Thursday, July 31, 2008

In the Way

The Lord commanded Israel to teach the Law to their children. They were to talk about the Law when they walked in the way. That is to say that as they were traveling they were to talk about God's commandments. Traveling time is to be used constructively. When Janie and I travel we try to make the time productive time. We frequently listen to the Bible as we drive. Sometimes she drives and I have my laptop out working on a sermon. Other times she has the laptop out and is doing work. I have traveled over 47,700 miles in the past 14 months in my car. That seems like a lot but thanks to modern technology it was productive time.

I will be traveling to Henderson to help my mother with some business. I will put the finishing touches on the sermon for Sunday as we travel. I will be back in the book of John chapter 18. The sermon is entitled "Arrested." Jesus arrested the crowd that came to arrest him. I learned something new while studying for this sermon and am anxious to share it with my congregation.

A strange thing happened the other day. A woman from Colorado who had visited our service last December was visiting in a nursing home in her home town. She heard from the next room my voice preaching the same sermon she had heard back in December. She called her grandmother who is a member of our church and asked how that could be. We have no explaination for it. It may be that someone recorded our service from the radio broadcast and mailed it to someone in Colorado. What ever the explaination it is nice to know that our services are reaching more than just our local area. It just seems strange that the lady heard the exact same sermon on the very day she chose to visit the nursing home.

The picture is of my mother a several years ago. God bless you.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

I worked on the website some yesterday. I am trying to get a little done each day on the site for there is much work to be done there. I have Bro. Davis' portion working and will be adding to it a lot more in the weeks to come. I plan to see Bro. Brooks about the A.J. Kirkland memorial page week after next. I am also working on my Dad's history pages. I have to convert them from "Works" to "PDF" so they can be put on the website.
The picture is of me and Bro. Davis a camp many years ago. He and I made a good team. We would wake those boys up with a song each morning and they got a good Gospel message from Bro. Davis while they were getting ready for the day. It was the best of times.

Today I will be in the office working on Sunday's sermon and if I get it finished I will work on some more. There just does not seem to be enough hours in a day to get everything done. I am looking forward to tonights sermon from the Song of Solomon. I am going to cover the discription of the two main characters and they are very graphic. I will try not to become red faced. Marriage and family are good things. They get a lot of bad press due to the sinfulness of people. Below is an image I got off of the Web years ago. I do not know the artist's name but if I can find It I sure will give him/her the credit. It is a drawing based on the discription of the girl in the Song of Solomon. Check it out with Song of Solomon chapter 4. God bless you

Monday, July 28, 2008


Joy can be found in some very simple things. The picture is of my grandson at camp last week. I bought three of my grandkids a coke each. My grandson found joy in shaking his up and sucking off the resultant foam. I was at the nursing home this morning helping in the services. As I stood in a long line of wheelchairs waiting for the elevator I began to sing "Come Thou Fount." I was joined by a man who use to be a minor league baseball player. We sang a joyful duet and it seemed to bring joy to those around us. Later I was visiting in the room of one of our church members and I reached and got a picture from off her night stand and showed it to her and imediately a smile of joy came on her face. Tomorrow I plan to go to my office and spend the day. It will be a joy to sit alone with the Lord and study His wonderful word. Everyday brings us closer to the coming of the Lord. I love to think of the joy it will be to meet the Lord in the air and to join all my friends and family in praising God before His throne.

My son-in-law was ordained this past Saturday. I had the privelege of asking the questions. It all went well and his uncle preached an outstanding message. We had good food and fellowship afterward. The picture is of my wife and mother-in-law congratulating him after the service. Well I have some more visiting to do today so will get going. God bless you.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Home Again

We are back from camp now and we had a great time. The picture is of the group we took to camp minus 2 or 3. There were 28 reported saved and 3 young men surrendered to preach. We are hosting the district ladies auxilary at our church tomorrow and we will have to rush away from that to get to the ordination service in Palistine. It will be a busy day. Sunday should be fairly normal and I am excited about the sermon. I will be preaching on the subject of "Coming Before the Lord." I had worked the sermon up at camp and on the way back I asked one of the boys to help me with my sermon and he gave me some profound thoughts about the subject. I will of course use them tomorrow in my sermon and will give him the credit. It is amazing what young people can teach you. This second picture is of me waiting in line at the cafeteria at camp.

Next week things should be back to normal. I have no plans for the week other than to take off on Friday and take Janie over to Canton trades day. It will be a good time to spend some time alone with her, I love her so and she is so sweet to me. Monday the 21st was the 35th anniversary of our first date. I will be in the office most of the week getting caught up on some work. I have been putting off cleaning out the garage and I think it is time to set a day and just do it.

My mother seems to be doing well. Her life seems a little dull compared to my schedule. She crochets and is putting together a jigsaw puzzle. she does not even turn on her TV or radio. Gets her news from the paper.
I have not seen any news this week and was so busy I did not think anything of it. I don't seem to have missed anything major. The weather is going to be hot and dry here reaching above 100 every day this week. It will be a good week to get caught up on my office work. God bless you.

Sunday, July 20, 2008


This picture was taken with my cell phone. It is of my father and my oldest sister and my mother. They are waiting to order their meal and I think it is interesting that my dad and sister have the same pose. Like father, like daughter. I invite you to read our churches latest blog post about mourning.

What do I need to take to camp? I have asked this of myself for some 23 years now. Every year I take kids to camp and every year I make a mental list of what I need to take. I have my suitcase packed and usually I do not pack as many clothes as Janie thinks I should. I am looking forward to camp this year and wish it could be un-interupted. God knows best and is in complete control. He needed me to miss teaching my adult class on Tuesday morning so miss it I will. I plan to give the class a worksheet to do on the first day and then we will go over it the next day. I will have someone to hand them out and to help lead the discussion that is inevitable. The questions I pose will make them think and hopefully reason. They will be designed to raise their curiosity and long for an answer. So the first thing packed was my lessons and sermon.
I will take my laptop with me and if I can connect to the internet I will blog a little while at camp to let you know how things are going. If you check back and see no new posts you will know that I am either too busy or could not connect. God bless you.

Saturday, July 19, 2008


The ability to share the feelings of another, especially in sorrow or trouble; compassion. This is my favorite definition of sympathy. We arrived home safely and it is so good to be home!! We checked the mail first thing and were amazed and humbled by the huge stack of sympathy cards we recieved. I opened and drank in each word slowly and deliberately. The one from the Faith M.B.C. of Hewitt was particularly overwhelming! It seemed to me that each of these really do share my feelings. Each one truly displays compassion and kindness toward Janie and me. I want to say thank you to each and every one for your prayers and support the Lord truly has been our strength through it all.

We helped my mother with her adjustment to widowhood and we helped Janie's parents with some of their affairs and got a lot done. It was time well spent and a work that needed to be done. Times like these bring siblings, scattered by life's journey, back together again. It was good to visit with my brothers and sisters. I wish we did not live so very far apart.

Tomorrow I will be preaching a sermon on the subject of procrastination. It is entitled "One More Night with the Frogs." It is a sermon title my father used back when I was a very young child and I have never forgotten it. I do this in his honor and because it is a much needed lesson for God's children today. Next week we will be at church camp. We will return to Hillsboro Monday night for a funeral Tuesday morning. We will return to camp in Laneville, Texas right after the funeral. Janie is washing clothes tonight and we will be packing tomorrow to leave for camp at 6:00 Monday morning. I am looking forward to camp and pray that many lost souls will be saved. Tuesday, week after next, I will pick my younger sister up at the airport and take her to my mother's house. She is going to spend a few days with her and that will be good for the both of them. I will return to Henderson Friday and take her back to the airport Saturday morning. The upper picture is of the table set up at the funeral with the guest book. The lower picture is of my brother and his wife from California at the lunch that was provided by Tyler Road M.B.C.. God bless you.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Move On

My mother seems to be making the adjustment to her widowhood very well. She has already dealt with dad's clothing, sending some to TBI, giving some away to her sons, and burning the rest. She has gotten rid of her dish network tv, saying she does not watch tv cause there is nothing on it. A salesman called her to try to get her to reconsider and she told him very abruptly that there was nothing on tv worth watching and not to call again. It seems she truly has moved on.

I want to move on. I want to get back to my normal routine, what ever that might have been. I have camp next week and that will be interupted by a funeral back in Hillsboro. We will go to camp on Monday to get everyone settled in, I am the registrar for camp. We will leave camp Monday afternoon to return to Hillsboro for the family visitation and then I will help in the funeral service Tuesday morning at 10. After the funeral we will drive back to camp and finish the week there. I will have to get someone to take my class Tuesday morning. Also I will have to get someone to take Janie's class and someone to conduct the services Tuesday morning at camp. I am sure the Lord will provide.

Today we plan to get my mother's car serviced and filled up with gas. She has never in her life put gas in a car. I have been out this morning picking peaches for my mother-in-law though there were not many of them ripe. One peach I left on the limb for fear of being stung by red wasps whose home was much to close for comfort. Seeing them caused me to move on. My In-laws need their yard mowed so I may try to do that today as well.

We are suppose to visit with my sister-in-law and her husband from Mississippi today. Probably do that this evening. We have not had any quality visiting time with them in a very long time. I did take a few hours off yesterday to go to a sporting goods store with my 2 brothers and my nephew. They picked me up at my In-laws and we went over to Shreveport to the Bass-Pro shop. It was fun to get away for a few hours. When I got in the car they began to bombard me with Bible questions. I think they were loaded and ready for me. Some of the questions were very deep and I gave the best answer that I could. Some of their questions could not be answered due to the Bible's silence on the subject. I think all in all I helped them or at least gave them something to think about especially about the deep subject of the Kingdom of God.

My dad had written a 97 page account of the history of his life. I plan to finish this document by adding the story of his last days. His history will be posted on the web at which is going to be a site that I will maintain. You can go there even now and see bro. Davis' website. After finishing my dad's history I will move on to my new adopted dad's website and try to finish it as well. My adopted dad is bro. Harold Davis. He came up to me after the funeral service and said "Well SON, you did a great job." I told him that as he was walking up to me I had the same thought about our relationship. I have always considered him my father in the ministry.

Well I have work to do so lets move on. The top picture is of my mother the day we went to the cemetery to bury dad's cremains. The lower picture is of their tombstone. God bless you.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Where is the Fun in Funeral?

Dad's funeral was well attended. Judging from the guest book and the crowd I would say there was about 75 people present. Several of my TBI instructors attended. I was asked to write up something for the Baptist Monitor and will do that soon. The service went well, my older brother presented the American Flag to mother on behalf of a grateful nation. Bro Harold Davis came all the way from Tyler and it was a joy to have him present. He has been present at every major event of my married life. It was 83 degrees and there was an occasional breeze. The pavillion provided good shade and everyone was able to be seated on old fashion benches. We brought a few padded chairs for those who needed them. Some had a little trouble finding the cemetery but all in all everything went well.
My sisters had to head for Dallas to catch their flight and we left mother alone at home so she could get a short nap. I went over to my nieces house to fix her dryer. Every time they would touch it they would get shocked. It was wired incorrectly and so I rewired it and now it is safe. I am visiting with my mother and will return to Janie's parents for the night. We have a few things to do tomorrow and we have a wedding on Saturday then it will be back to Hillsboro. God bless you.


Cremains does not sound like a real word does it. It is the proper word for the ashes of a body that has been cremated. My mother, brothers, sisters and our spouses went to the cemetery on Tuesday to bury dad's cremains and to have a private time of reflection. My mother's brother met us there and provided us with a posthole digger. My youngest brother dug the hole and I placed the cremains in the ground and carefully covered them over. We stood in a circle and each read a passage of scripture. My younger sister was overcome with tears and could not read her passage so my older brother put his arm around her and read the passage for her. When we had all finished we sang "Farther Along", a song my father had sung just a few hours before he died. My older brother lead us in a prayer and then we embraced each other for a while and then returned to mother's house to bid each other good night. This morning we will have the formal grave side service. There will be many there and I will bring a short message from 2 Timothy 4:6-8, 18. Check back here to see more pictures and some details of the funeral. God bless you.

Sunday, July 13, 2008


It is raining here. That is special because it has not rained here in a very long time and we need the rain. We had a good day today and our attendance at church was up. Thanks to Michele's willingness to take the three girls to camp by herself we will not have to make the trip to Arkansas. The people of our congregation overwhelm me with kindness. They greeted me with hugs and cards and gifts. I am not worthy of any of these blessings. They have been so understanding of my prolonged absense from Hillsboro as I helped to take care of my mother and dad. They truly are sweet and godly people.

This picture was taken Saturday at our get together at mother's house. It was a really good time and a great joy to mother to have all her children together again. I enjoyed spending time with my brothers and sisters on Saturday. Mother had us to each take one of our dad's Bibles and we each got one of his harmonicas. I chose the $3.99 one that I had bought him when we went on vacation together about 7 years ago. It was on that trip that dad asked me what I planned to do with the house in which my daughter had been living. I told him that I was going to try to talk my dad and mother into moving into it. They moved in just a few months afterward. It may be a cheap harmonica but I would not take anything for it. We were to each take one of his whirly gigs and I have not gotten mine yet. Mother gave me dad's omnicord. It is a strange musical instrument and looks fairly simple to play so I will give it a try.

I had a good long talk with Jason and Angie today and they are doing well. We will be heading back over to Henderson tomorrow around noon and will spend most of Tuesday visiting with family. I will go with my brothers, sisters, and mother on Tuesday to the cemetery to bury the urn. We will have a quite time together and then on Wednesday morning at 10:00 we will gather with a host of family and friends to commorate dad's going home. Tomorrow I will work on the very brief message that I will bring from the text that dad picked to be read at his funeral. I would like to have had a conventional funeral for dad but that is not what he wanted. Out of a sense of duty to honor my father I yield to his wishes and will keep the service short.
Rain is refreshing and so is the time when loved ones gather to comfort one another. God bless you.

Friday, July 11, 2008

A Quick Update

I have only had about 2 hours sleep in 2 days so I will give this quick update. We will be visiting with family here in Henderson on Saturday and will return to Hillsboro Saturday night. We will spend Sunday in Hillsboro and then Monday morning we plan to go with the youth and one of the ladies from our church to Bogg Springs Camp in Arkansas. We will get them settled in there and then head back to Henderson either Monday night or Tuesday morning. On Wednesday at 10:00 AM we will gather at Langley Cemetery in Beckville Texas for a short memorial service. I am not sure what we will do next. If all is going well with Mother we may return to Arkansas and finish the week at camp. If we need to stay in Henderson we will do that and the youth and their sponsor will have the church van to return home to Hillsboro. We shall see how things go and play it by ear taking things a day at a time. The picture is of my Dad and Mother at their 60th celebration. He was a good husband and Father. God bless you.

Dad has gone home.

We are but pilgrams and strangers here on earth. My Dad has been gathered unto his fathers. He passed away this morning at 7:20. My mother is doing as well as can be expected. She is exhausted and needs some rest. Janie and I have been awake for 28 hours now and are begining to feel like it. I will post more later. God bless you.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008


We will be going over to Cleburne in the morning at 6:00. One of our church members is having surgery. My dad had a ruff day today and it is now looking like Friday before he can go home. I had a very productive day yesterday and a fairly good day today. That long list I posted on this blog is getting shorter. I have my lessons ready for the adult class at camp and my sermons for this Sunday are ready to go. The devotionals for next weeks camp are not ready yet so will try to get that done Friday. I am a little concerned that something might happen with my dad while I am in Arkansas. I will be there without my car and no way of getting back to Texas before Friday without pulling the kids out of camp early. I will pray that all goes well and that he has a really good week.

I will be preaching a sermon entitled "Putting out the Fleece." It is taken from Judges chapter six and the story of Gideon. Sunday night we will continue the life of Christ series. I will not be able to meet with the Faith church in Hewitt this month due to camp. I will miss seeing them for they are truly a joy to be around. If I were seeking a church home in the Waco area I would definitly want to join with them. They remind me so much of the people at Walnut Street. My father's birthday is July 30th and I plan to go to Henderson the day before so I can see him on his birthday. Doing that means more to me now than ever before. He is going to be 84 years old. The picture is of my parents and my oldest sister on the back porch of my parents house in Henderson. My dad built the porch and helped a whole lot when I built the house. He did most of the wiring and he and mother sheetrocked the upstairs by themselves, of course they were 10 years younger back then only 74.

Friday we will go to Henderson to check on our parents and to see my brother from California. We will also attend a birthday party while we are there on Saturday. We will be back in Hillsboro late Saturday night. Thanks for your prayers. God bless you.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Ties are Bad for your health

As a preacher I usually wear a tie each day. Even when I have no plans but to go to the office and work I usually wear a tie. When I have a tie on my legs quit working. I feel I need to drive the car and not get hot and sweaty in my good clothes. So I get in the car and turn on the A/C and drive everywhere I need to go. With my dad in the hospital I have taken a renewed interest in my health. My doctor has told me to exercise every day so I have taken to leaving the tie in the closet and putting on my walking clothes and walk to work. It is a good for me and saves on fuel costs. I arrived at my office this morning refreshed by the walk and ready to get to work. It is going to be a great day. My brother called and said that dad was doing well this morning and may go home tomorrow. His arm is still swollen from the blood clot but is improving. I am going to work on Sunday's sermon now and the Sunday School lesson after that. I stayed at the office until 9:30 last night and got a lot of work done. I hope to do the same today and try to get caught up. The picture is of my wifes parents and their three son-in-laws. God bless you.

Sunday, July 6, 2008


This afternoon we had the services at one of the nursing homes here in town. I took this picture with my cell phone of Janie playinng the piano. The announced that we were having services but no one showed up so Janie and I sang a dozen songs or so until it was apparent that no one was coming. She said I could preach to her but I thought we should probably just go home. I enjoyed singing praises to God with her. I am wondering about camp next week. We have six going and I am the only male in the bunch. I am suppose to do a devotional with our group every day at camp so will work that up this week. I teach the Adult class week after next at Pine Springs. I have not worked those three lessons up yet but will do that this next week as well. I plan to set up a website for camp registration next year. I want to have that set up before I go to camp so that I can give them the website for next years registration. It will take a lot of work off of me if I am elected as registrar.

My dad is doing well at last report. He has a blood clot in his left arm. Due to this set back he will not go home on Monday so keep him in your prayers. I do not plan to return to Henderson until Friday night. I just have too much work to get done. Lets see:

mail out registration letters for camp,

call camp and report how many registered,

write 3 "from the pastor",

get three lessons ready for camp,

get three devotionals ready for camp,

get a sermon ready for camp,

get Sunday morning sermon ready,

Sunday night sermon ready,

Sunday School lesson ready,

next Sunday's sermon,

next Sunday's evening sermon,

next Sunday's Sunday School lesson,

visit the hospital each day this week,

Sermon for Monday morning nursing home service,

burn cd's of today's services,

make church's bank deposit,

check the mail,

Wash the car,

clean out the garage,

clean out the storage room.

The list goes on and on. At least my hands are not idle. God bless you.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

We are HOME!!!!

We are home. It is good to be home. I want to stay at home but, alas, I must take kids to camp week after next and then the week after that as well. Then we get a break from traveling. I will go over to Henderson to visit with my father and my brother who is coming in from California. I am about to head over to the office for some much needed time and work there. My dad may come home Monday and he really is looking forward to that. He will have to live a very sedentary life style due to his weak heart. I think it would be good to upgrade his computer to a faster one because that is something he enjoys and he can do without any strain on his heart. I am going to talk to him more about that. Well I am must go for now. God bless you.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Dad's Tough Night

Dad has had a tough night. He has vomited, gotten hot, gotten cold, had an I.V. removed from his arm and not slept but just a few minutes here and there. It is hard to sit here and watch him suffer. He has vomited every day he has been here. No one seems to know why he is so sick. It has got to be hard on his heart to do all of the coughing and vomiting. The medicine they give him for nausea makes him mumble a lot. The medicine does not seem to work very well in his case for he just had a dose and now he is sick again. I know God has a plan here so will trust as does Dad that He is in control. It is 3:40 a.m. on July 4th. The picture is of my mother sitting in the hospital room. You would not want to see one of my dad right now he looks bad, exhausted, sick and in pain. The nurse tells me there is nothing they can do for the nausea he will just have to endure.
This has not been a very uplifting post so let me add this note of encouragement. The Lord never promised to keep us from pain and suffering but He did promise to be with us and to give us grace in every trying hour. I feel His hand in this room even now. I know we will get through this hour by His power, grace, and mercy. God bless you.

Thursday, July 3, 2008


I am sitting up with my dad at the hospital tonight. This is a picture taken with my cell phone of my parents in the hospital room. His nurse is named Jeremy. Jeremy is a young man of about 30 years old. He is very patient and has an excellent bedside manner. Dad really likes him. I find that a hospital stay is far better when you have good people waiting on you. Dad is running a low grade fever and I hope that it is not an indication of some problem. He did not walk today but did sit up on the side of his bed and eat just a little bit of soup and a couple of crackers. He is drinking more now and that is good. I expect he will be in the hospital for the weekend but it may be well into next week before he can go home. Janie took mother back to their home in Henderson for the night. Mother needs to get away and rest. Janie will bring her back in the morning. I will get some work done on my laptop and then will recline for a little bit of sleep. I had expected to get more work done today but things kept interrupting. To study properly I need time alone without distractions. I may just preach one of my old sermons for Sunday rather than the new one I have been trying to work up. "Where is the Lamb" will be a good sermon if I can get some time alone with it.
Janie and I took her parents out for a ride. We went to a cemetery where her great grandparents are buried. Moss had grown on the head stone and Janie is pictured here using my pocket knife to clean it off. You could not read the writting on the stone. We went out to eat with them afterwards and had a good time.
My new son-in-law is going to see about building my dad a wheel chair ramp at his house. I let dad have the say in where to put it and with Justin doing the work it will be a good one indeed. God bless you.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008


Well, here is a quick update on what is going on right now. The doctor said that my dad had a lot of damage to his heart and that his heart is very weak. He did not do well at all on Tuesday but today, Wednesday, he was much better. He ate a little bit of breakfast and threw up just before lunch. He did eat a little bit of lunch and supper and kept them down ok. I stayed the night with him on Tuesday night and he had to have a shot for pain about 2:30 Wednesday morning and then he became real talkative. He asked me what I was going to preach Sunday and I told him I planned to preach on the subject of "THE LAMB OF GOD." The title will be "WHERE IS THE LAMB?" I gave him the major points of the sermon and we talked a bit more then he said "Well I had better get some sleep" so we did. He was feeling much better today and they had him to sit in a chair for about half an hour. My brother, Ralph, will sit up with him tonight to give me a break and I will sit with him tomorrow and tomorrow night. He may go home on Friday but I have my doubts about that. I will return to Hillsboro on Saturday to prepare for the Sunday Services. I left the hospital early this afternoon and went back to Henderson to help my wife with her parents. They wanted to do some sight seeing and so we did. We took them out to eat and then upon returning home we packed up a suitcase and left to take my father-in-law to the hospital for a sleep study test in Tyler. We got back to Henderson about 10:30 tonight. I am about to go to bed and get ready for another long day tomorrow. It bothers me a great deal to be away from Hillsboro. I feel like I am not doing a good job as pastor when I spend so much time out of town. I feel strongly that God would have me to honor my parents and my wife's parents by being there for them when they need help so desperately. I would teach my congregation to do the same as I have done and hope that I am leading by example. Thanks to you all for your prayers. God bless you.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Quick Note

Just a quick note to let everyone know that Janie and I are in Longview. My dad had a heart attack and is resting comfortably right now. We are waiting to hear from the doctor about the test results. He is suppose to come and tell us how much damage there is to his heart and what plan of action he would recommend for his recovery. Please keep us in your prayers. The 1st Christian church next to the hospital has provided us a room in their hospitality house. It is very nice and we can take turns going there to get some rest. I am not sure right now how long we will be here but will blog somemore when time allows. Thanks for your prayers. God bless you.