Sunday, December 28, 2008

Hiking Through the Scriptures

I plan to start reading the Bible through this year from a slightly different perspective. I will hike through the scriptures. I will be concentrating on the geography of the Bible and its significance to the lives and times of the people of the Bible. I will watch for the various animals that I encounter along the trail. I will take notice of the plants and trees as I walk. My hike will not be lonely for walking with me will be Adam, Abraham, David, and Jesus. The trail will cover thousands of miles taking me through North Africa, Egypt, Israel, Syria, Iraq, Iran, Italy, and many other countries around the great sea. I can't wait to get started.

Tomorrow we will have services at the nursing home and I will work on the sermon for Sunday. The tree will come down tomorrow and many thank you notes will be written. A trip to the post office and car wash should round out the day nicely. The picture is of Janie and the grand kids at her mother's house the day after Christmas. God bless you.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

35 years

It is our 35th wedding anniversary today. We tried to decide what was the exact time we said "I do." Our best guess was 7:15 pm. Janie was 19 and I was 20 years old when we got married. My life with her has been wonderful. God truly has blessed me. We got all dressed up an went out to a nice place to eat and then returned home, got comfortable and watched a "chick flick." It was fun just sitting in the quite holding hands and enjoying a good movie. The picture is of Janie and I five years ago standing in the same spot where we first met. God bless you.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas day has past

It is the day after Christmas and we have arrived in Henderson by way of the DFW airport. We met up with my sister, Peggy and gave her three hour ride to mother's house. We have left her there and are now at my in-law's house. We will spend the night here and return to Hillsboro in the morning. We had a great Christmas day. We went to bed at 3:00 am and got up at 8:30 am. The kids loved their toys and things. My son-in-law gave me a pencil sketch that he had done of a lake scene in Kosovo. He is a really good artist and this morning was working on a sketch of my father-in-law. It too was very impressive. I have no talents for art so am amazed by those who do. Janie and I had a nice visit at the airport. We waited for nearly an hour for my sister to arrive and I enjoyed her company. Our 35th anniversary is tomorrow and we have no plans for celebration. I will work on my sermons and lessons tonight which I will use Sunday. The picture is of Janie and her mother on our wedding day. God bless you

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Eve

Tis the day before Christmas and all through the house I am the only one stirring and I hope there are no mice. We have another busy day planned. My oldest daughter and her family should be here this afternoon and we need to get things ready for them. I will go up to the church here in a bit and get things setup for the evening service. We are going to have a birthday party for Jesus tonight. The word "birthday" occurs three times in the Bible. Pharaoh celebrated his birthday in Egypt with a feast and King Herod celebrated his birthday by having a supper. I suppose that this would indicate that people of importance, at least, celebrated their birthdays. Christmas is a celebration of the birth of Jesus. We will have cake and punch, maybe hot chocolate as well, tonight at church. I will bring a Christmas eave message on the subject of "What Can We Give Jesus for His Birthday."

Janie and I opened our Christmas presents to each other last night. I got two sweaters, a puzzle, a set of drill bits, an air compressor, and some flannel sheets. I gave Janie a pair of pajamas, a snuggle blanket, a book, a game, and a necklace. She was very pleased as was I.

We will be picking my youngest Sister up at the DFW airport and taking her to Henderson on the day after Christmas. We plan to visit a little with her and my mother and then run over to see Janie's parents and spend the night there. We will return to Hillsboro on Saturday. I have a new years sermon for Sunday and am anxious to preach it. My youngest daughter and her husband will be headed for Bronson the day after Christmas to spend a week there. I bet that trip will be a lot of fun for them. I better get busy, I have a lot to do before church tonight. The picture is of us at our granddaughter's birthday party. God bless you.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Schlepping (to carry with great effort, lug)

My youngest sister used this word in an email she sent to me. I like learning new words and so I looked this one up. Her use of this word was most appropriate for I am a schlep (a person who is slow or awkward). The older I get the more schleppish I become.

A new year is about to begin and I enjoy the prospect of a fresh new page in my life. We measure our lives in years and the beginning of a new year is so wonderful for it is a time to put the past behind and move forward. I have much I would like to accomplish this year. I plan to have my blood pressure under control with diet and exercise. I plan to be 1/3 of the way through my thesis by this time next year. All these plans are dependent upon God's will because His plans for my life and use of my time must come before mine.

The services at Church this morning were very good. We had a good crowd and the Cantata went very well. I will be preaching from Isaiah chapter 61 tonight and plan to use that same text tomorrow morning at the nursing home when I preach there. We will do a little shopping tomorrow and some visitation as well. The picture is of a picture frame we bought this past summer at "First Monday" Trades day in Canton, Texas. We finally got some pictures printed out and put in the frame and hung it on the wall. The top row is our oldest Daughter's children and the second row is of our Son's children. The bottom row contains pictures of us, our children and their spouses. The Lord truly has blessed our family. God bless you.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Allow me first....

Jesus called a man to follow Him and to go where ever He would lead. (Luke 9:59) And Jesus said unto another, Follow me. But he said, Lord, allow me first to go and bury my father. Our priorities rarely agree with God's. When God calls us to service we often say to Him "wait, let me do this other thing first and then I will go." There is a thin line between "Corban" and "allow me to first go..." Some focus completely on the work of the Lord and leave no room for family. Others use the least of excuses to keep from doing God's work. I started work on my thesis and it has taken a back seat to many other things. I must have the prospectus finished by the end of February and I will really have to get busy to make that deadline. It will be a balancing act to know what things should take priority over the Thesis and what should not.

The Mid-Week Bible School kids performed their Christmas program this evening and had it not been scheduled for tonight we would not have run the bus due to heavy fog. We made it to the Church and back safely and we thank God for that. My cell phone had a mind of its on while I was driving the bus tonight. It called one of our church members 11 times. They could hear the noise of the bus and wondered if the kids had overpowered me and took control of the bus. They turned their phone off and left it off until they knew that we were through with the bus run. The program was good and the ride home was very good because we had a Sheriff's deputy riding on the bus. He truly was a peace officer.

We will go over to Henderson Tomorrow and I will visit with my mother on what would have been their 62 year wedding anniversary. I will get some work done on my thesis this week, hopefully. We still need to get some Christmas shopping done and hope do some of that tomorrow. I have the sermon ready to go for Sunday. It is entitled "Gabriel's introduction of Jesus Christ to His Mother, Mary." We have business meeting Sunday night and I will bring another Christmas message for that service. The pictures are of our new bus seats and some of the children practicing the Christmas program. God bless you.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made

(Psalms 139:14) I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well. King David said it right, we are wonderfully made. Physically the human body is an absolute wonder; But there is an intangible part of our beings which is also wonderfully made, our hearts. We have this wonderful capacity to love. We learn to love our parents and our brothers and sisters. We then make and have friends which we love. Next comes love for a spouse and this is indeed a wonderful thing. The first thing that God said was not good was that man should be alone. He gave to mankind the gift of marriage. It is a time for man to leave his father and mother and cleave unto his wife. That relationship ends when one of the two dies. The sorrow and mourning that follows is heart rending and serves to demonstrate how wonderfully we are made. My parents would have celebrated their 62 year anniversary this Friday the 19th of December. Janie and I will celebrate our 35th on December 27th. I want to thank my sister Jean and my Mother-in-law Charlcye for allowing the Lord to use them to get Janie and I together. It has truly been a wonderful 35 years. The picture is of my brother Ralph and his wife Denise on their wedding day. His first wife, Donna, died and God has blessed him again with another loving companion.

Janie has her ladies Bible study this morning and we will attend a funeral this afternoon. I have much work to get done today so I had better get started. Have a Merry Christmas and God bless you.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Jeremiah 31:33

"I will be their God." (Jeremiah 31:33) Christmas is a wonderful season of the year. It is my wish for each of you that you have a very Merry Christmas. To have a Merry Christmas Jeremiah gives us a wonderful key. “I will be their God.” This is all you could possibly need. Happiness lies in satisfaction and what could be more satisfying than this wonderful promise from God “I will be their God.” If you can pour this promise into your cup, you would say with King David, “My cup runneth over.” When this, “I am thy God”, is fulfilled and you accept Him as being so you truly possess all things. Desire, like death is never satisfied, but he who “filleth all in all” can fill the longing and emptiness of your soul. The Apostle Paul was able to be content with what ever he possessed. He knew how to abound and to be abased. Happiness is an attitude of choice. If you want more than quiet satisfaction and you desire joyous delight this Christmas season then here is music to your ears “I will be their God”, for God is the Maker of Heaven and Earth. Here is a deep sea of bliss to which there are no limits. “I will be their God.” If this does not make your face beam and your heart leap with joy, then surely your soul is not in a healthy state. This is the masterpiece of all the promises, “I will be their God.” This Christmas season enjoy and delight in knowing your God who has chosen you and loved you so much that He sent His Son into this world to be your Savior.

This is Sunday morning and it feels odd that I will not be preaching this morning. Rusty Teer, a missionary to Thailand will be preaching for us this morning. He use to be the youth director at Walnut Street several years ago. He preached for us this time last year and did a great job. I love to preach but I also love to hear someone else preach a good sermon. I will not be disappointed this morning. We also have a substitute song leader this morning and that will change things up a little bit also. I am expecting a really good service today.

I will be getting up at 3:00 in the morning to go to Dallas. One of our church members is having heart surgery. Janie will have her Bible study Tuesday morning and I believe we are to go to Waco Tuesday night for services there. Wednesday is our Midweek Bible School Christmas program and we pray the weather will be favorable and all will go well. Next week is Christmas! Hope you have a Merry one. God bless you.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Tempest in a Teapot

I heard the term "a tempest in a teapot" today. I am over 50 years old and frequently think back on the events of my life. Many of the tempests I encountered in my life's journey seem like terrible storms at the time but looking back I can see that they were just "a tempest in a teapot." This means that they were actually not significant in the greater scheme of things. I can remember being laid off from my job back in 1982. At the time I was very stressed out and worried. But six weeks later I was back at work and all was well. Reading the Bible and keeping the bigger picture in mind will help one to realize that their tempest is not as big as it may seem. Angie called me to say that she had missed her flight and missed her connection in Chicago. I know that must be worrisome for her but she was able to make other arrangements and get to where she needed to be. God was looking out for her. When Jesus was asleep in the ship and the tempest hit, His disciples were all worried. They awoke Jesus saying "Carest thou not that we perish?" Because they lacked faith in God they could not see that this storm was just "a tempest in a teapot." The picture is of my wife and kids back in 1981. The youngest one looks like she is having "a tempest in a teapot" moment.
Tomorrow will be a busy day. I am not sure yet what all will be happening. I may be taking my father-in-law for his doctor's appointment and Chemo therapy. I will take my laptop along and try to get some work done while I wait. We need to get some shopping done and maybe we can do that tomorrow night and Saturday. I visited with my mother some today and had a good time. I went to the house and got out on the roof and looked it over. It is still leaking and I was trying to see if there was anything obvious causing this to happen. I could not see anything so will probably have to redo the shingles. The house needs a lot of work and I am not sure that Steve will be able to get all the work done as quickly as he may need it done. He may have to rent a house for a time while the work proceeds. I can not be depended upon to work on the house regularly due to my pastoral duties and family responsibilities.
Remember that when you are in a storm look up to heaven and see things from God's perspective and you will see that your storm is only "a tempest in a teapot." Merry Christmas and God bless you.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


Friends are a wonderful thing. Friends usually have something in common. For example we have friends that are a part of our church family. I have friends who are, like me, pastors here in Hillsboro. I met this evening with the Hillsboro Ministerial Asscociation. There were round tables and we had supper together. I took a seat at one of the tables which was empty. I was soon joined by the pastors who have been in this town as long or longer than I have. We have known each other for six years and have developed close friendships. They pray for me and I pray for them. The pastor of one of the churches here in town along with his wife cooked and served our meal and it was good. Some of these pastors I have worked together with at funerals and have prayed with them on the town square. It is my hope that we will have many more years together as friends.

Janie and I moved our freezer into the house from the garage and I am going to make a place for it in the wash room. I hope to have this project completed tonight. Tomorrow we will install a seat on the bus and get ready to pick up the kids for Wednesday night.

I want to spend more time with my friends. My work and my family sometimes keeps me from spending time with my friends and when they do I know that my friends understand and many of them have the same situation. I feel the need to deliberately schedule time for friends this holiday season. The picture is of me and my best friend lighting our half of a unity candle at Jason and Angie's wedding. God bless you.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Christmas Tree is Up

The Christmas tree is up. The picture is of my youngest daughter and her husband standing next to the tree. We had a fun time at our tree decorating party. We had eggnog, chips and dip, pizza, and hot chocolate. The tree looks great and there are gifts already under it. Justin drew the star and Sarah cut it out and covered it with tin foil. Justin poked 2 holes in it and I tied it to the top of the tree. My oldest daughter and her family will be coming to our house on Christmas eve and our youngest will be coming over sometime on Christmas day. We will try to have a skype session with Jason and Angie while we are all here together. It will be a very merry Christmas.
Janie and I extracted another seat from the bus today and got it delivered down to Waco to be reworked. We had a good visit with the Woffords, the couple that are doing the seats. We brought back the one they just finished and will install it tomorrow. The seats look really nice.
Janie is about finished with her lesson for tomorrow and I am going to go now and work on straitening up the bedroom and moving the furniture around a bit. It is time for a change. It is good to move the furniture every now and then. I have a supper meeting tomorrow night with some of the other pastors in town. We have not met in a very long time and so it will be good to see them all again.
I am working on the sermon for the Sunday before Christmas and it is shaping up to be a good one. My brother should be in Texas by tomorrow and I am looking forward to seeing him on Thursday. I will need to help Janie with her parents on Friday so will work with Steve on Thursday and will work on my thesis on Friday during and after my Father-in-law's Chemo therapy treatment. God bless you.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Pearl Harbor

Today is the anniversary of the bombing of Pearl Harbor. It was a terrible morning when 2403 men lost their lives and 1178 were wounded. As time passes there are fewer and fewer people of that generation living. My father died in July of this year and thousands of other World War II veterans die each year. It is my hope that the horrors of war will never be forgotten and that men would beat their swords into plow shears. One day the Lord will return and we will have peace on earth like the World has never know.
Our services went well today. We had a good crowd at church and a good time of worship. We observe the Lord's Supper tonight which causes us to remember the suffering and death of Christ on the cross for our sins. I am off to church now. God bless you.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Tree Times Four

My mother and I had lunch together yesterday. She told me a Christmas story from when she was a very little girl. There would eventually be 7 children in their family but this story occurred when there was only 4. She is the next to oldest child in her family. They lived in a very old house back in 1929 and it was a small house. They did not normally put up a Christmas tree because there was just not room for it in the house. The 4 of the kids each begged for a tree. They each wanted their own tree. They were wanting to set up 4 Christmas trees not one. Their parents consented and they went out had found 4 small pine trees and cut them down. They used buckets of dirt for tree stands. They each made their own decorations out of paper and each placed a paper star on the top of their tree. There was no electricity so there were no lights at all on these trees just homemade ornaments. Christmas morning under each of these trees was one homemade present, one apple, one orange, one piece of hard candy, and a handful of nuts (still in the shells). Their father, "Papa", bought a large box of raisins and they all shared them. They were never allowed to do that again. Four trees was just too much. It was sweet of Andrew and Lourie Nutt to indulge their kids that way. It was hard times in 1929. But they still were able to have a Merry Christmas. Mother also shared with me that there were 2 years when she lived at home with her parents that she got nothing on Christmas day. She admits that she was disappointed but that feeling soon passed.

Mother and I worked on the house together and she seems to enjoy working with me. We start by building a fire in the fireplace to take the chill out of the house. I went upon the roof and fixed a roof leak while mother drove nails and floated sheet rock. We ripped out the old shower next and cleaned out that corner of the down stairs bathroom. We called it day and she returned to her crochet and me to pastoring. The picture is of me, my brothers, and my parents in 1970 at Ayer Massachusetts. Merry Christmas mother and God bless you.

Thursday, December 4, 2008


We got three more seats installed in the church bus. Just in time to make the rounds and pick up the kids. We picked up over 40 kids and had a real good Bible School session. The kids are working on a Christmas program which they will perform the week before Christmas. The couple in the picture were the ones who fixed the seats. They are a sweet couple and hard working. As you can see the seats look great especially when they are seen next to the ones that have not been reworked. Janie took some pictures of me under the bus bolting the seats back down. There are six bolts to each seat four of which have to be reached from underneath the bus. I thought Janie was going to scalp one of the kids when she saw him with his feet on the new seat. The bus is running really well and the new seats will make the inside really nice.

Our plans did not work out like we had thought they would. We got to Henderson this morning around 1:30 and got to bed about 2:30. We got up at 7:00 and due to Janie's dad having some problems I ended up taking her mother to the doctor. We left about 8:00 and got back home at 3:00 this afternoon. It was a long day but I did enjoy spending time with my mother-in-law. Janie spent the day taking care of her dad and he seems to be doing ok right now. Pray for him, please.

Tomorrow I plan to work at our house in Henderson but that may or may not happen depending on the needs of the in-laws. I am going to try to get some work done tonight and get to bed a little earlier than I did last night. God bless you.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Boils At Christmas

"Boils At Christmas" is the title of the sermon I plan to preach this Sunday. The theme of this message is how to have a Merry Christmas. I wanted to bring this message the first Sunday of December so that as the holiday draws near people will be armed with the knowledge of what Christmas is really all about. One of my favorite Christmas TV specials is "The Grinch That Stole Christmas." It has an amazing message but does not quite go far enough. Dr. Seuss placed the emphasis on human relationships, that is "Christmas will always be just as long as we have we." But what if we don't have we? Can a person who is all alone have a Merry Christmas? Dr. Seuss makes clear that a Merry Christmas is not dependent upon things and that is true but neither is it dependent upon the quality or quantity of our relationships with others. "Boils At Christmas" may be heard online Sunday at 11:00 AM CST at .
We will work on the church bus tomorrow removing 1 seat and installing 3 others. I will try to post a picture of that process tomorrow. Janie's Dad is not doing well and we are very concerned about him. She takes him to the doctor on Friday and she takes her mother on Thursday. I will put the finishing touches on the sermon for Sunday Thursday night and will get the Sunday School lesson ready Tomorrow. There will be a tree decorating party at our house Saturday evening at 6:00 PM. We will have Christmas music and refreshments. We will watch a Christmas movie of some sort as we string popcorn and make construction paper chains for the tree. It will be a joyful time because of the REASON for the season. Oh yes and, Jean, I will decorate a shoe box as you suggested, thanks. Does anyone know where you can buy ribbon candy? God bless you.

Sunday, November 30, 2008


Christmas will soon be here. In the past several years I have had little or no enthusiasm for the season. The tree seems like more trouble than it is worth. Our kids are grown and it was more fun when they were around to enjoy it. I am going to try to work up some enthusiasm for Christmas. I think I will start with a tree decorating party. Hot Chocolate, homemade pie, Christmas music everything that sets the mood for Christmas will be there. I want to try stringing popcorn for the tree. I may also make a chain out of construction paper and a foil covered cardboard star for the top of the tree just like when I was a kid.

I am contemplating a series of sermons for Christmas. The object of the Christmas season ought to be Jesus Christ. The tree, the gifts, the songs, the fellowship ought to be centered around Jesus Christ the Lord. It is a time to rejoice and celebrate God's gift of His Son.

We hope to have a visit from our children at Christmas. I am going to make a big pot of chili, homemade fruit cake and rolls for Christmas day. Family being together and enjoying each other's company is my favorite part of Christmas. It is my hope that our family can be together at Christmas and play games together and enjoy good eating and good singing. I have in the past told my children not to buy me presents but to come and see me instead. The best things in life are not things. We celebrated Christmas early with my son and his family in Paris, France. Just being with them for the week was a joy.

This will be a busy week. I am to get a hair cut before I preach at the nursing home in the morning. I need to go to the post office and to the store. "From the Pastor" for next Sunday will be composed tomorrow afternoon and my lesson for Wednesday night will be completed before I call it a day. Tuesday I will be preaching at a funeral and will be going down to Waco for services with the Faith Missionary Baptist Church. Wednesday will be spent getting ready to pick up the kids for our Mid-Week Bible School. I should also get our local Baptist association minute book to the publisher. I will finish my work for the MBA of Texas and get that emailed off this week. Janie and I will need to return to Henderson for her parents doctor's appointments. I will use my day off to work on the house there and will work on my thesis Friday before returning to Hillsboro. The picture is of Christmas 2005. We celebrated Christmas at a motel in Kingsville, Texas that year. God bless you.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Town Dog

A dog that lives in town and is fed by everyone in town is usually fat from over eating. After lunch today I feel like a town dog. There was way more food than our family could eat. We had lunch today at my in-law's house and there were 18 present. It was a good time. I road in an old Ford pickup over to my wife's uncles house. I visited with him and installed a new clock for him. After a good visit I walked back to my in-laws house and about 1/10 of a mile from their house I met a group out for a walk on their way to meet me. We walked a while and then returned to the house. It is a beautiful day.

The picture is of us talking to Jason and Angie over in France. We enjoyed seeing them and they enjoyed seeing us. He took his computer to the kid's room and showed them sleeping in their beds. Everyone was excited about being able to talk to them. We will be back in Hillsboro on Saturday and then back to normal. God bless you.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Thanksgiving Memories

This season of the year brings back many fond memories. I remember that my mother use to set out snacks and finger foods like celery and cream cheese for us to eat while we waited for the turkey to cook. We would watch the Macy's parade and snack. When it was time for the main eating event I would try my best to eat down to the bone the turkey leg. In my younger years I was never able to finish it. Every memory of Thanksgiving is sweet to me. I like to cook and I like to eat so Thanksgiving is a perfect holiday to me. There is much for which I am thankful. I am thankful that Jesus Christ saved my soul and that He called me to preach His word. I am thankful for my wife and for our children and grandchildren. Have a happy Thanksgiving. God bless you.

Monday, November 24, 2008


In 1937 the German zeppelin Hindenburg burst into flames at Lakehurst, N.J., killing 35 of the 97 passengers and crew on board and one of the ground crew. There was an explosion at the New London school (the same school our children attended) in march of that year killing over 300 students and teachers. That same year the main part of our house in Henderson was built. It was a three room house and a family of six lived in it. There was no indoor plumbing in those days when the Pierson family lived there. In 1946 they added two more rooms onto the south end of the house and a bathroom on the north end. We bought the place in 1976 and remodeled the bathroom and the kitchen. In 1994 we enclosed the front porch which added a walk in closet and a small office space to the house. In 2001 we added 3 rooms upstairs and one downstairs to the house. Today the porch has been restored and my oldest Brother and I stripped all the Sheetrock out of the old bathroom and now have it ready to be completely overhauled. It was dirty work but the end result will be worth it. The expensive part will be the kitchen cabinets. I was in the process of building the cabinets when I left Henderson 6 years ago. I now have incentive to get back on them again. I will build them in Hillsboro and bring them to Henderson for installation. This will take a while for I will not allow it to interfere with my pastoral duties.
Next week we will begin to run the bus on Wednesday nights again and I am so looking forward to that. The kids have expressed their eagerness to come and I feel like the teachers are also refreshed and eager to help these children have a relationship with Jesus Christ. In 1937 Dr. A. J. Kirkland left Walnut Street Missionary Baptist Church after being their pastor for 6 and 1/2 years. In those years 678 people joined the church. Perhaps the Lord will again bless His church with such growth as we reach out to our community with His Gospel message.
Tomorrow I plan to work with my brother on the house and then return to Hillsboro for a very special thanksgiving service on Wednesday. God bless you.

Friday, November 21, 2008


To piddle is to waste time. My daughter use to have a teacher that would send a note home with her stating "Stacie sure had the piddles today." The teacher thought that Stacie was wasting time and not getting her work done. Focus and planning are the keys to combating the piddles. Stay focused on executing the plan and you won't piddle. Yesterday I had the piddles. I would pause a lot and think about what to do next and how to do it. This seemed like piddling to me. It is worth the time spent planning ones next move. Janie wanted to move the piano from the porch into the house so we planned a way to move it up a 6 inch step into the house without hurting ourselves. With a square ended shovel and a couple of 2X4's we moved it with very little effort. I actually got a lot done yesterday even with the piddles. I got the front door moved and it works better than it ever has. With my mother's help we insulated the front wall of the living room. I burned a bunch of trash and removed the old awning above where the old front door had been. I am ready to remove the walls that enclose the front porch and hope to get that done this morning and then head over to Bro. Davis' house to pour water on his hands (2 Kings 3:11). The picture is of the house in Henderson as of yesterday. It shows that I have removed the front door and one of the windows. I will try to post the after picture showing the porch walls removed. God bless you.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

And They're Off

Janie has just left with her parents in tow to spend a very long day in Tyler, Texas. They have multiple doctor appointments today including a three hour wait for a shot to take effect before a bone scan test. They did not sleep much last night and I expect they may doze in the waiting room. I am off to run some errands and work on the house. Not sure what I will get done today but will do what I can. Tomorrow is Thesis day and a visit with Bro. Davis to pick up a package that their church has prepared for Jason and Angie in France. Jason is in Denver, Co. today to get his driver's license. He returns to France on Sunday. We sent a lap top computer to my sister's house for Jason to pick up and hopefully it made it there safely.

Sunday I will be preaching from the 103rd Psalm. It was the text I used for my first sermon after being licensed to preach. Thanksgiving will be the theme of the message. Sunday is the sixth anniversary of my first day as pastor of Walnut Street Missionary Baptist Church. It has been truly a blessing to pastor such a wonderful group of people.

We got the newly covered seat on the bus and it looks good. We took out two more seats and carried them down to Waco to be recovered. That makes three seats waiting to be recovered and another 17 to go. I took a picture with my cell phone but I do not have with me the blue tooth device to get the picture off my phone so will post a picture later on. I am looking forward to next week and Thanksgiving with family. Well They're off and so am I. The picture is of my father-in-law and my granddaughter Lilia. God bless you.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Night is Coming

The old song says "work for the night is coming." There is a limit to what one can do in a single day. I am going to try to accomplish as much as possible this day. I need to print out the minutes of our local baptist association meeting and get that to the print shop so they can get the minute books ready for me. I need to put the new seat back into the bus, that new seat looks great. I will take a picture and post it here later. I need to take 2 more seats out of the bus and get them delivered for recovering. I need to finish my part of the minutes of our state baptist association and get those mailed off to be published. I need to put the finishing touches on tonight's sermon and will get that done first of all. Then the night will come and what remains will carry over until tomorrow.

The plummber came by yesterday and fixed our stopped up sink. I did all that I could do to fix it myself but to no avail. He had it fixed in about 30 minutes. A little know how and the right tools go a long way. Monday we had a flat tire and had to have it fixed. There was a nail in it. We donated blood yesterday and that went very well. I am still amazed that I can lose a pint of blood in 10 minutes and feel no differently than before.

Janie will have a busy day tomorrow with her parents and doctor visits and again on Friday when her dad has another Chemo therapy treatment. I plan to work on our house and on my thesis while she is taking care of her parents. The picture is of my mother sitting in her yard. She turned 84 on Monday this week and is doing great. God bless you.

Monday, November 17, 2008

The Remembrance of Christ

I preached at the nursing home this morning to a crowd of about 50. I used as a text Paul's account of the Lord's Supper. The purpose of the Supper is for us to remember the Body and Blood of Christ. I went over the life of Christ and all that He had done from the time of His birth until His return into Heaven. I reminded them of the Blood of Christ. It was shed when He was but an infant 8 days old. I covered many of the references to the blood of Christ in the scriptures concluding with the fact that the saints in Heaven have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of Jesus Christ the Lamb. I simply took them through the scriptures and there was joy on their faces. I believe that the best homilies are those that are all about Jesus and devoid of any opinion or comment by man. "Tell me the Story of Jesus. Write on my heart every word. Tell me the story most precious, sweetest that ever was heard!"

We will be attending the Ladies Thanksgiving Dinner tonight at our church. Janie is in the kitchen preparing the food she is taking while I blog a bit. I am going down to Waco tomorrow afternoon to donate blood. I use to fear it but now it is no big deal. I need to call and see if the Faith church in Hewitt want to meet this Tuesday night. I am going to take a bus seat down to one of the ladies in that church. She has recovered one seat and is ready for another. I also have a check in my pocket for her and I need to get that delivered. Next week is Thanksgiving and we plan to spend the day with Janie's parents. My mother will be at my younger brother's house for Thanksgiving as will my older brother from California. I am preparing a sermon for next Sunday on a Thanksgiving theme. I have not settled on a text yet but will before Wednesday. Janie will be doing a one act skit for the ladies tonight and It is a good one. The picture is of her preparing for the skit. God bless you.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Goofing off

To goof off is to be doing something when you are suppose to be doing something else. When you have a job to do and you are suppose to be doing it but you choose to do something else instead you are said to be goofing off. Usually the thing you have chosen to do is more fun than the job at hand. Thus the word goofing is used to indicate that the thing you are doing is more fun than the thing you are suppose to be doing. I am goofing off. I am sitting on a stage with about 300 people in front of me as I am writing this blog. There is a break in the action while a report is being read. I have no notes to take at this time which is why I am on this stage before all these people. I do enjoy blogging. The meeting has gone very well. We had a good lunch break and got to eat with my daughter and Son-in-law. Excuse me I have to take some notes now. Ok I am back. I love my new son-in-law. He has such a friendly and humorous personality, I just enjoy being around him. I miss my other daughter and son-in-law, he had to work and could not come to the meeting. The picture is of me and the other clerk of the MBA of Texas. We sit at a table and take the minutes of the meeting. The meeting ends tonight around 10:00 pm. Janie will be taking her parents to the doctors in Tyler tomorrow while I get some work done on our house here. We plan to work on the house again on Friday and will be back in Hillsboro on Saturday. God bless you.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


We are at the Messenger meeting of the Missionary Baptist Association of Texas. The TBI alumni banquet was very good. The food was great and the program was outstanding. It is the 60th anniversary of Texas Baptist Institute. It has rained all day today. We got Jason's booth set up and have given away about 40 measuring spoons with the France mission logo on them. Janie attended the Ladies meeting while I attend the mens meeting this morning. I had to work on a small problem with the Data Base program we use for the church directory. I found the problem and got it fixed. There was a small problem even this afternoon but it is fixed now. We are to eat supper with my niece and her family tonight before the evening session. Here are some pictures I have taken so far of the meeting. One is of me and Mike at the booth. The other is of the ladies meeting where you might be able to see Janie sitting in the lower right hand corner of the picture. God bless you.

Friday, November 7, 2008


I have a song stuck in my head. It got stuck there yesterday. I thought that a little sleep would cause it to go away but the first thing that came to my mind this morning was that song. "Escuchen al pepino, oigan su voz fuerte, como un leon...." My mind sings it in spanish and causes it to burst forth from my mouth. It is called "The dance of the Cucumber." Search for it on YouTube if you want it stuck in your head. I have another song stuck in my head and it will be there for the next three years. It is the Song of Songs. I do not know how the tune goes but I may make up one as a finishing touch to my Thesis. I am thinking about making a paraphrase poem of the Song of Songs and then putting it too music. Could you imagine the Song of Songs done as a Rap?

Someone out there, would you explain to me the analogy of Song of Songs 8:11-12. Email me your pithy comments at and they will be considered. It would seem that her vineyard is her companionship and that Solomon should give her something precious in return for it. I don't know, I am still working on it.

I got up early again this morning to get some work done. I will work on my prospectus this morning and hope to get another thousand words or so done. Plan to work a little on our house here this afternoon trying to get it liveable for my brother and his wife. We want to attend the Syrup Festival in Henderson Saturday morning, I want to get some cans of real Ribon Cane syrup to give to friends over in Hillsboro. The picture is of our choir at Walnut Street a few years ago. God bless you.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Up and Adam

God walked in the garden of Eden in the cool of the day. The coolest time of an average day is early morning. Adam had to be up early the morning the Lord confronted him about his sin. Early morning is my favorite time of day. It is, as it was with Adam, a time for prayer. It is, as with Adam, a time for confession. It is, as with Adam, a time to recieve forgiveness. It is, as with Adam, a time to earn your living by the sweat of your face.

With a firm grip on the day its off to work. Study the Sunday School lesson for this Sunday right after breakfast. Blog, as with all things, for the glory of God. Help my brother, for a brother was born for adversity. Honor my parents this day for this is a work that God would have me to do. Help someone I have never met before just because it is the right thing to do. Give to my spouse "due benevolence" for God has commanded it and I love her so. These things please God and because He has, as with Adam, redeemed me from sin and death, I have risen early and will do these very things for Him this day.
The picture is of Janie washing dishes in France. One of the many things about Janie that I admire is her heart for service. She is constantly serving others. God bless you.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


We arrived back home safe and sound about 10:00 last night to discover that the election was over and Obama had won. It is good to know that the Lord is in control of all things including the direction of our nation. I am completely optimistic about the future and am anxious to watch it unfold.

Whenever I travel by plane I wonder who will be sitting next to me. I knew that the flight to France would be long and I hoped that I would sit next to someone who might need to hear the Gospel. I thought that the odds were favorable that the person who would land in the seat next to me would not have a relationship with Jesus Christ and that I would have a chance to talk to them about Jesus. On our first flight a man from Nairobi, Africa named John sat next to me for just a few minutes before moving to another seat. The plane was not full and he moved to have more room. He was a business man on his way to Sweden for a meeting and then he was headed back to his home in Nairobi. I asked what his name was and he said "John" and when I said my name was Paul he replied "Two Apostles." Between his name and his knowing the Apostles I figured he was a Christian. Our next flight was also not full and their was no one sitting next to me except of course my sweet wife, Janie. On our return flight Janie sat next to a nurse from New Mexico who had been on vacation in Europe. On our flight to Dallas I sat between to men. The man to my left was a black man from Texas who put his earphones on immediately and slept most of the way and wore his earphones the whole way. The man to my right saw my Bible right off and began to tell me his story. He was returning from a mission trip to Africa. He was a member of Lake Fork Baptist Church near Lake Fork, Texas. He said that they had over 2000 professions of Faith while they were there. I told him about our church and our mission work in France. He spent his flying time reading a book about a missionary in Africa while I read the Song of Songs. It seems that everyone I sat with had some connection to Africa. I return to the news that our country has elected a President with an African connection. I am not sure what is going on with this African connection and our trip to France but at the least I will begin to pray for Africa and God's mission works there. I brought home from France a package that an African Missionary who is in the States right now wanted Jason to send to him. I will be putting that in the mail today.

I got up early this morning to get started on my day. There are several things I must get done today. I will work on my sermon for tonight and do some visitation. I have been working on a text in First Corinthians chapter five, which I will be teaching Sunday night. I will try to put the finishing touches on that today as well. We will be going over to Henderson on Thursday so Janie can see to her parents needs and I will work on our house there. Friday morning I will try to get some more done on my thesis before returning to Hillsboro Friday evening. The picture is of Jason and his kids out in front of a super store named "CORA." It is about 4 times the size of Wal-Mart and has just about every thing you could want. God bless you.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Worship from afar

We spent our Sunday here in France Worshiping God. We started with a morning worship with praising, praying, and preaching. We went to the Louvre and saw many paintings of Bible stories. The picture here is of the wedding in Canaan. It is on the wall opposite of the Mona Lisa. The crowd were all oooing over Mona while I was in awe of the wedding in Canaan. We went back to the apartment and tuned into the services at Walnut Street. We could see several people there and enjoyed Bro. Davis' sermon very much. We sang every song with the good people of Walnut Street, including the invitation. We were in a far away place but worship was just a sweet.

Today is Lilia's birthday and I expect we will celebrate it with great joy today. The weather is beautiful today and we will most likely take the kids to a park and let them play. We head home in the morning and though we have thoroughly enjoyed our stay here it will be good to be home. I will include a few more of our pictures with this blog post. God bless you.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

We enjoyed our Saturday in France. Went shopping and bought Angie a food processor for her birthday which was back in September. We waited for a bus to go to a mall that is several miles away and it never came. Angie asked a lady who was waiting for the same bus if something was wrong with the bus schedule. I, again, was impressed that Angie was able to engage in an extended conversation in French with this woman. Afterward Angie said that there was one word which she said that she did not understand. I did not understand any of them so she has come a long way. We walked to the store near by which is called Cora it is like a Wal-Mart only about 5 times bigger. We bought sandwiches from the sandwich shop just next door for lunch and for supper we had pork tacos and they were very good. Angie is a really good cook.

We have slept really well for being in a foreign land. The kids wake us every morning and we come down for a good breakfast to start our day. Tomorrow will be church day. I am looking forward to experiencing the services at Walnut Street from Jason's point of view.

Friday, October 31, 2008

The People

Janie and I went, on our own accompanied only by 8 year old Lilia, to the grocery store. It was interesting to be almost illiterate when shopping. We found the items for which we were looking and went to the check out. The cashier was in training and Lilia had to go back for something we thought of after arriving at the check out line. The two ladies who were there, the cashier and her trainer, did not speak English. They knew only a few words and I only knew a few words of French. I struck up a conversation with them and they smiled while trying to speak what few English words they knew and at my poor attempt to speak French. I have found that the French people are very friendly. I have felt very safe here. The people seem to mind their own business and are very quite. I notice also that the dress in dark colors. I have a light tan colored hat that you have seen in some of the pictures I have posted here. I felt like I was wearing loud clothing. After the grocery store we stopped at a bakery shop and bought some baguettes. The lady behind the counter seemed to be amused that we were relying on an 8 year old to place our order. We are going to watch a movie with our grand kids now before they go to bed. They are eating their Halloween candy right now. All has gone well with our visit here so far and we are having a great time. God bless you.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Hiking in Paris

Jason and I went on a hike today. We walked about 12 miles in all. The trail itself was about 12 kilometers in length. I have placed here some pictures that we took along the trail. The weather was perfect for hiking. It was in the 40's and cloudy. We enjoyed good conversation on a number of different topics ranging from the Bible to hiking. We caught the train back to the apartment. I was impressed when Jason stopped a lady on the trail and said something to her in French and she said something back to him and the only word I caught was "wee." Jason seems to have a good grip on the language and the train system. He navigated the maze of tunnels in the subway without any problem. We saw a sign for a McDonald's but never saw the actual place. It rained on us from the train station to the apartment. When we got home we ate liver sandwiches, mmm mmm good. We have had tuna pizza, crepes stuffed with ham and cheese, and monkey bread and boiled eggs for breakfast. We had a good visit with Jason and Angie after the kids went to bed. Jason showed us a YouTube video of a comedian who was very funny. They had to pause it at one point so I could catch my breath I was laughing so hard. We are planning to have another busy day tomorrow. Enjoy the pictures of our hike. God bless you.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Really Good Music

We went into the city of Paris today and I was amazed by the train system. It is very efficient and not much waiting. We saw 2 really big church buildings and a really tall tower. The last sentence was composed in honor of my grandson, Micah and here's why. We watched 2 acrobats performing for the crowd and they were really good. They had a CD player playing in the back ground and as we walked away, amazed by their act, Micah said "That was a good song." If my summary of our trip into Paris still has you wondering here is what we saw. We went first to the Eiffel Tower and it was amazing. We did not wait in the 1 kilometer long line to take a ride to the top. I had no desire to go to the top and so it suited me to move on. We went to a vantage point where we could see the tower from afar and passed by several statues of dead guys. We went to a church building on a tall hill. I can not spell nor pronounce its name. We climbed over 300 stair steps to reach it. It was a great view of the city and it was here we saw the acrobats. There was a Carousel there and we let the kids ride it twice. While they were on the ride Jason began to feed the birds. A whole host of pigeons gathered and one landed on my head and sat there for a while which amused the kids. We went next to Notre Dame and it too was amazing especially for a building that was started back in 1623 and took 170 years to complete.
Jason and I will hike on a walking trail from Massy to Paris tomorrow and I am looking forward to that. We had a good visit this evening after the kids went to bed. I am going to head for bed now and get rested for tomorrows long hike. The pictures should be self explanatory. God bless you.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

"Its good to have you back"

We made it to Paris, France without any problems. We slept a little on the plane and were hit by a tidal wave of grand children's affection. Caleb kept saying over and over again, as we walked from place to place, "Its good to have you back." We have been busy since we arrived. The train ride from the airport to Massy was about an hour long. We ate a sandwich for lunch and then took a good walk to see the language school where Jason and Angie attend. We saw their kid's schools and then Jason and I, with the kids, walked back to the apartment while Janie and Angie went shopping. We have already celebrated Christmas and Birthday's with opening of presents before supper. I have included some of the pictures we have taken so far. The first is of us on the plane waiting to depart from Chicago. The second is of Jason and I carrying the baggage from the train to the apartment. The third is of the Clarks in front of Lilia's school. The fourth picture is of the kids opening their Christmas presents and the other goodies we brought from the States. We are going to head for bed early tonight and try to get over this jet lag. God bless you.