Category Archives: Life in general

A Blessed Week

Last week was one that was full of blessings. I suppose we could really say that about every week, but this one was especially so.

Our church held Vacation Bible School beginning on Sunday evening. We had an incredible week that was the highest attended we have ever had. The kids were enthusiastic and the adults really worked together as a team. Several good contacts with unchurched families were made. Most importantly, two children placed their faith in Jesus as their Lord and Savior.

On Tuesday, we got the news that my oldest son, Clay, had received a good report on an unusual mole that had been removed from his back a couple of weeks ago. The doctor said that it was not malignant. Thanks a bunch to all of you who offered prayers on his behalf.

After such a full week, we were ready for a little getaway, so my family and I travelled to the Julian Bruce State Park at St. George Island, Florida. We had a wonderful day at the beach and experienced some beautiful sights. Some sea turtles had recently hatched and you could see the trails through the sand where they had made their way to the water. We saw a number of different birds, but to cap everything off, we had all four swam out to the sand bar that was about forty or fifty yards offshore. While we were there, playing in about three feet of crystal-clear water, four dolphins came swimming by within just a few yards of us. They were unhurried, one even stuck his head out of the water to get a better look at us. It was an amazing moment.

On the way back home, we swung by our old haunt, St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge and drove down to the lighthouse at sunset. On our way in we had a close encounter with a raccoon. Coming out we got a good look at a great horned owl and a pair of ospreys. We even got to see a whip-poor-will. As often as I have heard these birds sing at night, this was the first one I had actually seen.

Praise the Lord for His everlasting goodness.

 

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What’s Up?

I hadn’t intended to let this much time slide by without posting. Time flies when you’re busy.

My family and I had a very nice (albeit short) vacation. We watched the Braves get clobbered, ate some good barbecue, visited a church where the preacher didn’t even carry a Bible into the pulpit, visited Callaway Gardens, hiked all the way to the bottom of Providence Canyon and hiked all the way to the top again (those who know me realize what an accomplishment THAT was!), came home for Clay to have his little procedure done (still waiting on the results), watched as he and his baseball team battled hard to take second place in their league tournament, put up fifteen gallons of snap beans and ten gallons of squash, picked five gallons each of butterbeans and black-eyed peas, been sick (along with my youngest, Glen) for the last three days with some kind of bug, and amidst it all still have been having church and ministry going on.

What’s up with you? ūüėČ

A Day Observing God’s Glory

It happened a little over a week ago, but I am just now finding the time to write about it. My two sons and I took a field trip to our favorite haunt, St. Mark’s National Wildlife Refuge. It would take a whole series of posts to describe all that we saw and experienced, but it was an incredible day observing the glory of God in His creation.

We were able to get within arm’s length of baby alligators, saw some awesome sights on a hiking trail, identified over 50 different species of birds, had a nice picnic lunch, took a boat ride on the nearby Wakulla River where we saw a 12 1/2 foot long gator literally launch himself out of the water in an attempt to catch a FLYING great blue heron. We then went swimming in the 69 degree water of the springs there. We grilled some brats and sausage for supper and discovered a new dessert that was almost too good to be true, ROASTED CHOCOLATE MARSHMALLOWS STUCK BETWEEN THE SEPARATED PARTS OF AN OREO COOKIE. (Kings should eat so well.) We saw deer, a raccoon, got buzzed by a bat, serenaded by bullfrogs and illuminated by fireflies.

It was a trip that started at 7:30 A.M. and ended about 10:00 P.M. and it was non-stop, but we all decided we would do it again in a heartbeat.

Here are a few pictures of some of the things we saw.

A baby alligator

 

Is God great or what?

I’m Alive

I just wanted to let everyone know that I’m still kickin’ down here in south Georgia.

¬†As you can see, I haven’t posted a lot this year. There are several really good reasons and a whole bunch of excuses. As with many of us, the demands of life have mandated that blogging be pushed to a back burner for the time being.

I hope to be able to get back to a higher level of frequent posting soon. In the meantime, feel free to leave your thoughts on the election, NCAA basketball tournament (go Duke!), theology or any other family-friendly topic.

 God bless you and keep you in His love and grace.

Do I Look Like a Threat to National Security?

I’m serious. I’m a patriotic, law-abiding, tax-paying, voting¬†citizen of the good ol’ US of A. I have ancestors who have fought in every war in our nations illustrious history. My forefathers were among the earliest colonists. I still get chills when I hear the “Star-Spangled Banner”. I am an American.

Which is why I was shocked and humiliated on my recent trip to Washington, D.C. to find myself being pulled aside and searched in a very personal manner.

As most of my readers will know, my brother, his family and mine got together at his home in Virginia a couple of weeks ago. We had a great visit and saw some incredible fall foliage. While we were there, we had planned to tour our nation’s capital together. One of the sites on the itinerary was the U.S. Capitol building.

I took great pains in preparing for the day to deliberately eliminate items from my attire that might arouse suspicion. I left my pocket knife in the hotel room. I chose not to wear my shotgun shell studded belt since it has a lot of extra metal on it, opting instead for a plain black leather job.

I had already passed through a number of metal detectors without incident. We went through the very thorough security checkpoint to enter the capitol building without a hitch. Just innocent tourists seeing the sights and pointing them out to our kids.

Having obtained some passes to the Senate gallery from our tour guide, we decided to drop in and see our tax dollars at work. We dropped off those items, such as cameras, etc., that were prohibited at the check room and proceeded to yet another security point.

The rest of our group went through with no problem and I assumed that I was okay as well. As I approached the gate, I noticed a box of disposable rubber gloves on top. It seemed as if a few were missing. The forefinger of one stuck ominously out of the slot in the box. It seemed to fold over and point itself at me as I handed my keys to the guard.

“I’m sorry, sir,” he said, “You can’t take these into the Senate.”

“Are you serious?” I asked. “These are keys.”

At my use of the word “serious”, his left eyebrow arched slightly as if to say, “I never joke.”

“This is a battery-operated, electronic device,” he replied, pointing to the remote keyless entry thing-a-ma-bob that opens the door to my Jeep. “You can’t take battery operated, electronic devices into the Senate. Please take it back down to the check-room.”

Feeling a bit foolish (although, I don’t know why) I made my back down the corridor to the check room. The attendant grinned when he saw me.

“Back so soon?”

Wordlessly, I handed him my key ring.

“Ah,” he said knowingly, “Happens all the time.”

Feeling a little less confident I once again approached the security point. The two guards, one male and one female, were eyeing me suspiciously. The rubber finger sticking out of the box of gloves seemed to be getting longer. I took a deep breath and walked through the gate.

Sure enough, it lit up like a Christmas tree and emitted a loud tone that caused several heads in the corridor to turn and look at me as if I should be on the next boat to Guantanamo.

“Sir, please step over to the side and raise your hands,” the female guard instructed with all the sternness of a fifth grade English teacher reprimanding a little boy for saying “Ain’t”.

Right there, in front of my family and the world, I stood with my hands in the air as she swept me from head to toe with a battery-operated electronic device that for some reason made me think of these guys.

As the device passed over my right pants pocket, it gave a loud “Beep”. I flinched, expecting to be vaporized at any second. The guard’s eyes went to the box of rubber gloves.

It was at that moment that I had an epiphany and discovered what James meant by “effectual, fervent prayer.” Thankfully, God intervened and the gloves remained in the box.

“Sir, what do you have in your pocket?” She asked coldy.

Before I could stammer out that I had a pocketful of change, she suddenly decided to FRISK me and began grabbing handfuls of my leg.

YIKES!!!!

“It’s change, it’s nothing but money,” I was finally able to gasp.

She finally became convinced that I was telling the truth and let me pass, but my humiliation was complete.

Can you believe that? It was money, legal tender that had been validated and minted under the authority of the very people I was going to see working (?).

Then, after all of that, we entered the Senate and saw a grand total of five Senators on the job. I have a hunch the other ninety-five were hard at work coming up with a bi-partisan plan to further humiliate their constituents.

Now, I realize that security is important. One of the most basic rights guaranteed to American citizens is the government’s protection of the innocent’s right-to-life from those who would threaten them.

That makes me wonder, how strictly do they search the Senators before they release them upon the general public?

Happy Thanksgiving

I hope to get caught up on posting about what has been going on in my life the last couple of weeks after the holiday.

Until then, have a blessed and happy Thanksgiving. Enjoy the time with friends and family. Indulge in the traditional feast and collapse on the sofa in a turkey-induced coma and sleep through the football game of your choice. Wake up and enjoy a second piece of pumpkin pie.

Most of all, take the time to be thankful for all of the many blessings that our gracious Father pours out upon us daily. He is so much better to us than we are to Him.

 God bless.

Getting Out of Town

Things have been slow here at Heavenly Heartburn for the last few days and are about to get a little slower.

I’m going on vacation.

Yeehaw!

Going to see my Aunt Sarah and Uncle Randy in Walterboro, SC, then on up to Farmville, VA to visit my brother and his family for a few days. We hope to see a little of Washington, DC, while we are in the neighborhood.

After that, we will be returning to Augusta, GA, to attend the Georgia Baptist Convention Annual Meeting. (Just typing it makes me tired!)

I will try to give you a full report when I return. In the meantime, if you think about it, say a prayer for us.

Bits and Pieces

It’s been quite a weekend. On Friday, I took my two sons along with my mom and dad to St. Mark’s National Wildlife Refuge. We had attempted to go the week before, but had to postpone the trip due to sickness.

We had a great time and saw a variety of birds including, wild turkey, bald eagle, osprey (a really big one), white ibis, glossy ibis, wood stork, egrets and herons of several varieties (including a beautiful great blue heron), kingfisher, pelicans and some blue-wing teal. We also saw a deer as we were leaving. Migrating butterflies were everywhere and we were able to see a really nice rainbow.

On Saturday, my wife and I went with some friends to see the Seminoles beat up on North Carolina State. It was a great game, even though the weather was a little wierd. We had a lightening delay of about 49 minutes, but when we re-entered the stadium, there was a beautiful double rainbow arching over the field. (I wonder if there is any significance in that? hmmm).

We had a wonderful day at church yesterday. There was a great spirit in the services and the fellowship was sweet. Last night we had several members share some scriptures that they had been reading and talk about what they were learning from the Word. It was really great and some edifying thoughts were brought out. On the way to church, we saw yet another rainbow, making it the first time in my life that I have seen rainbows on three consecutive days.

I also want to share with those of you who might be interested about a blog that some friends are running right now. Keith and Julie Parker and their son race are the son-in-law, daughter and grandson of Cleve and Judy Dixon who attend Pine Park Baptist Church. Keith recently graduated from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. They are in the process of adopting a little boy from Viet Nam. Julie is keeping a blog of their trip and the process. You can read about it here. Please keep this family in your prayers as they travel.

I hope you have a blessed day. Come back soon.

Sorry, Y’all

¬† I’m sorry that I have been so absent in posting this week. It’s been sort of busy in my neck of the woods the last few days. Hopefully, things will settle down soon and I will have time to start thinking again.

Weekend Survey

¬†¬† Blogging provides us with a unique ability to experience virtual community. I feel like I know some of you even though we haven’t actually met. Yet and still, if we were to meet face-to-face, I’ll bet there would be a few surprises. So the topic of this weekend’s survey will be: “Something you don’t know about me”.

¬†¬†¬† Here is something you don’t know about me, I once worked as an apprentice brick-layer. Isn’t that exciting?

    How about you? What interesting bits of trivia about your life are you willing to share?

   God bless and have a great weekend.