Category Archives: Family

Concert Review

   This past Saturday evening, my family and I had a wonderful time at a concert hosted by the Lighthouse Children’s Home in Tallahassee, FL. LCH is a wonderful ministry that for nearly thirty years now has been helping reclaim the lives of young girls who have been scarred by sin. Their choir started off the evening with some testimonies and songs that were a real blessing.

   A very pleasant surprise (for me) that evening was the Crist Family. I had never had the opportunity to hear this family before but I was incredibly blessed. They have one of the freshest sounds I have heard in years. Putting seven vocalists on stage allows them to be creative with their harmony and they did so flawlessly. They sang a particularly pleasing arrangement on the old classic “He Looked Beyond My Fault.” I look forward to getting to hear these folks again.

   They were followed by the Mark Trammell Trio. Mark is well-known for his years with the Cathedrals, Greater Vision and Gold City. The phrase that came to mind when watching them was “pure class”. This trio has an awesome blend and their song selection was great. Two songs that stood out to me were the old standard, “I Believe In a Hill Called Mount Calvary,” and their latest single, “Once Upon a Cross.” Don’t miss an opportunity to hear these guys.

   The evening was completed by Gold City. The fellows just got up there and did what they do best. Great quartet harmony, awesome vocals and plenty of energy made for an inspiring presentation. They sang many of their standbys such as “I’m Not Giving Up” and “Midnight Cry,” but some of their newer material like “Preach the Word” and “Truth Is Marching On,”were a blessing as well. Bass vocalist, Aaron McCune, did an outstanding job on Stuart Hamblen’s, “Teach Me, Lord, To Wait”.

   Above all, each group that took the stage exalted Christ. It was a blessing to see the truth presented unapologetically and the gospel given clearly. Praise the Lord for a wonderful evening.


Elvis Lives

   That’s right, you read it here. Elvis lives. I saw him with my own two eyes Saturday afternoon. I’ll bet you’ll never guess where, so let me tell you the story.

   As I mentioned in my Weekend Survey, I took the family to Lake Seminole State Park for some fun and relaxation. We left our house shortly after lunch and after stopping by my parent’s house to take them some strawberries, we went to the Wal-mart in Bainbridge, GA, to pick up some bratwursts and accompanying goodies.

   While we were doing our shopping, I heard the strains of “I Can’t Help Falling In Love With You” coming from the part of the store to where we were headed. As we passed the jewelry department, I saw a large banner advertising a karaoke contest. Sure enough, there was a short, somewhat chunky version of Elvis on stage singing to Marilyn Monroe. Elvis had on the ubiquitous white-sequined suit, unbuttoned in the front exposing his pasty white chest (it was whiter than the suit). His pompadour was bigger than he was.

   A few minutes later, we came back by and there was a preacher (?) on stage performing a marriage ceremony for Elvis and Marilyn. The cashier told me they were renewing their vows…dressed up in silly costumes…in Wal-mart. Isn’t that romantic?

   We continued on to the lake where we had a great time of fun and relaxation, all except for the four hours of non-stop jet skiing right in front of where I was trying to enjoy my Grisham novel. They were so loud that I could barely hear my Miles Davis CD.

   Pardon me for a ranting a little here. Why is that people on jet skis think that the whole world exists for watching them do stupid stunts and scream like maniacs? I began to recall a favorite episode of the Andy Griffith show in which Barney buys a motorcycle and begins to terrorize the citizens of Mayberry with it. Aunt Bee offered the solution of stringing a strand of barbed wire across the road. But, after I thought about it, I realized that probably wasn’t the Christian thing to do.

   Eventually they quit and I enjoyed fifteen minutes of blissful quiet before the mosquitoes came out and made me go home.

   All in all, it was a pretty fun day.

Weekend Survey

   I’m getting ready to take the family over to Lake Seminole State Park. It is a very beautiful and relaxing place away from the telephone and pretty much everything else.

   We will probably do some swimming, fishing, canoeing and just kicking back and relaxing. Later, we will grill some bratwursts (my boys’ favorite) for supper. Which leads me to this week’s questions.

1.  Where is your favorite outdoor getaway?

2.  What is your favorite grilled food?

   The aforementioned location is my personal favorite. St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge (pictured in my header) is a close second.

   As far as grilling goes, I love it all, but especially a thick, tender ribeye steak that has been nicely marinated in Dale’s Sauce.

   Have fun and be blessed.

Prayer Requests

   I want to share a couple of prayer requests with you if I may.

   My grandmother went into the hospital Sunday night. We first thought she was having a heart attack or something, but as it turns out she has a virus. The doctors haven’t told my mom very much yet, but it made her pretty sick.

   My dad is preaching a revival for us at Pine Park Baptist Church this week. God has really been touching the hearts of some of our people in the first three services. Please pray that He will continue to do so and that we will be receptive and responsive to His leading.

   Feel free to share your own requests in the comments.

And We’re Back!

  What a trip! My dad and I had a wonderful trip to Atlanta the last couple of days to attend the State Evangelism Conference of the Georgia Baptist Convention. We were not able to get there for the entire event but we were thoroughly blessed by what we heard.

    We had the opportunity to hear Dr. Fred Luter, Dr. Ergun Caner, Dr. Johnny Hunt, and Dr. David Jeremiah among others. I was refreshed and challenged on several levels. Charles Billingsley brought some inspiring music as well.

   In addition, we had some wonderful fellowship with some old friends and made some new ones as well. It was especially nice to meet Galen Towns, aka Misawa, and fellowship over a cup of coffee with him. He is a frequent visitor and commentor here and is just as pleasant in person as he is on the web.

   After a quick visit to Bass Pro Shops (I could have stayed there all day) we returned home yesterday feeling a little tired in the body, but very refreshed in the spirit. The only problem is, since my dad is preaching a revival for us at Pine Park next week, I don’t get to preach for another week and a half or so. I may burst a blood vessel or something in the meantime.

Squeezing One In

   I really am sorry for the lack of posting the last few days. I had fully intended to follow up on the previous post much sooner.

   We had a death in the family this past week and our family has been spending some time together around that. I have sandwiched several committee meetings and a concert in between that and homeschooling. Two basketball games, an RA Derby, and spending time with my wife’s family who is in town for a visit have kept me busy up until this point.

    Tomorrow, we have our normal church schedule with an ordination service at another church tomorrow afternoon. Monday I have to go to Madison, FL, for a funeral, then come back to Bainbridge, GA, that evening to teach my class. Tuesday morning my dad and I are traveling to Atlanta to attend our GBC State Evangelism Conference where I am looking forward to hearing Ergun Caner, Johnny Hunt and David Jeremiah among others. We are supposed to return home Wednesday.

    I said all that to say this, it will probably be Wednesday or later before I get to post again. I hope to post on the conference as well as the next article on Christian Statesmanship at that time.

    In the meantime, I pray that God’s grace and peace will be upon all of you.

Guy’s Day Out

My wife, Amy, has been out of town for the last couple of days at a retreat for minister’s wives in Stone Mountain, GA. This is an annual event that she attends.

Hoping to avoid what happened last year while she was gone, I decided to take my two sons on a hike at St. Mark’s National Wildlife Refuge in St. Marks, FL. We were joined by my dad.

 We had an absolutely awesome time. This time of year there is a wide variety of birds wintering in the refuge. Among others, we saw two bald eagles, great blue herons, tri-colored herons, black-crowned night heron, wood stork, double-crested cormorant, and a variety of ducks. We also saw deer, several large alligators and an otter.

It was great to get out in the outdoors and see the beauty (my header picture was taken at St. Marks), have a picnic lunch on the side of the trail and enjoy some good company.

I just wanted to share it with you. I hope you have a great weekend.

Nana Zings the Magazine

I will try to post something substantive in the next day or two. In the meantime, let me share something with you that happened with my 87-year-old grandmother the other day (I call her “Nana”).

A couple of years ago, she got roped into a deal subscribing to a number of women’s magazines. After she got them, she realized that she really didn’t enjoy them and they weren’t worth the money. So when a young lady from one of the magazine companies called her recently to see if she wanted to renew her subscriptions, Nana replied, “No thank you, all you have in them is sex and dieting and I’m not interested in either one!”

Ya’ gotta love her!

Bits and Pieces

I want to take this opportunity to share with you some new links that you may find interesting.

 This past weekend, Jamey Murphy, husband of singer, Kelley Murphy, led a parenting conference at Pine Park Baptist Church. The conference materials were produced by the Parent Project and were excellent. They offered great insights into the problems that kids are facing today, how a parent can identify those problems, and how to develop a strategy to deal with them. If any pastors or youth ministers read this, I highly recommend that you have Jamey come and do a conference at your church. You can contact him through his brand-new blog (WordPress should start paying me commission fees!), Blue Collar Parent.

Frequent visitor and commentor here, Ron Jackson, aka RBJ, has finally started his own blog (WordPress, are you getting this?). Bro. Ron is a member of Pine Park BC and is a genuine country boy. He has a lot of stories to tell along with some pretty good insights on living. Be sure and give his blog a visit.

You can always count on kids for a good laugh. This past Sunday night, I had preached on David’s sin with Bathsheba. On the way home, my oldest son, Clay, asked, “Dad, what does ‘adultery’ mean?”

Before I could answer, my youngest son, Glen, chimed in, “That’s when you make fun of adults.” 

Finally, congratulations to the Bears and the Colts. This should be a pretty good Super Bowl. I think Peyton Manning will finally be able to silence his critics by leading his team to a championship.

Games From the Good Ol’ Days

I love to go to family gatherings and get the old folks to telling stories. And when I say “old folks”, I mean that with all the respect in the world. Underneath those gray hairs is a wealth of wisdom and experience, and I have always felt if I can learn from their experience, I may be able to avoid certain courses in the “school of hard knocks”.

 At a recent family get-together, the elder statesman of our family, Ausmus Betts, started telling me about a game he used to play when he was a boy called “root peg”. I knew about marbles, hoops, and had heard of “mumblety peg” but I didn’t know how to play it. Ausmus said that root peg was similar to mumblety peg.

 The game was played with pocket knives (standard equipment in a country boy’s pocket) and, of course, a little peg. They would drive the peg almost all the way into the ground and then take turns trying to throw their knives and stick them in the ground. They would use a variety of trick throwing motions and positions. If one player was able to stick his knife in the ground and the other one wasn’t, the loser would have to get down on his hands and knees and “root the peg” out of the ground using his nose and his teeth.

According to Ausmus, this led to some dirty faces for some.

I found this fascinating and wanted to pass it along to you. Have any of you ever played this? How about other games you may have played as a child?