Monday, February 27, 2012

"G" Rated

Cole gave Janie a b-day card and a pot plant.
This weekend was a Great one.  There was a Good crowd at Walnut Street Baptist church for both services.  The messaGe from the SonG of SonGs received a "G" ratinG.  The Sunday niGht sermon was lonGer than the usual Sunday niGht sermon but was very enjoyable, at least to the pastor.  The Holy Spirit of God is stirrinG in the hearts of the church and Good thinGs are happeninG.  A very Good bass sinGer joined Heaven's choir last week and we miss him so very much.  God sent this wonderful bass sinGer to Walnut Street to help out the choir and especially the pastor.  He was such an encouraGement to all.  We really miss him. 
Janie with mother and her new dress
The back yard finally dried up enouGh to mow.  It looks so much better now.  The outside faucet does not leak any more now that it has a new washer and bib screw.  The pastor's portion of the bulletin is ready to Go for next Sunday and the SonG of SonGs sermon for next Sunday is off to a Good start.  A "chick flick" was enjoyed by this pastor and his sweet wife and now it is time to bloG and head for bed.  It feels Good to get a lot done in a day.  Here's hoping tomorrow will be the same.  This has been a "G", (as in Great), rated day!  God bless you.

7 puzzles Mother put together in the dinning room
Preaching from the Song of Songs

Friday, February 24, 2012

Janie's Birthday

Janie's Birthday Cake
Today is Janie's birthday.  She turned __ years old today.  I will let you fill in the blank.  She took her mother to the hairdresser while I went to Wal-Mart and got Janie a Kindle Fire, a birthday cake, and a birthday card.  I wrote her a poem on the inside of the card.
Janie's Birthday gifts
While waiting for their return I took a walk in the woods behind the cottage.  I blazed a trail with my trusty axe back to the trail which the pipeline people had made across the back side of our property.  The placement of the pipeline could not be better.  It passes through a very marshy area along the creek.  I will be glad to see the jungle cleared.  I am making a hiking trail which will trail head at the cottage and make its way weaving back and forth and around and through 7 acres.   I am planning to have a campsite with a picnic table and running water about 300 feet behind the cottage.  I thought the grandkids might like to camp out back there in the woods this summer.
The grandkids sang happy birthday to Janie over the phone
My mother-in-law took us out to eat for Janie's birthday.  It was a very late lunch and we enjoyed it.  Upon return to my mother-in-law's house Janie opened her birthday card and gift and then played with the Kindle until she had it figured out.  We ate some cake and Janie talked by way of phone to our 5 grandkids in Moss Hill.  Janie is helping her mother right now balance her check book, a task I never did enjoy doing.  Tomorrow I will spend working on my Thesis and then go by to see my mother before heading back to Hillsboro.  We will not return to Henderson for 2 weeks.  God bless you.
Janie with her gifts

Tuesday, February 21, 2012


Mowing in February!
I had to mow our yard here in Hillsboro on Monday.  I can not remember ever mowing a yard in February before.  I waited hoping that there would come a killer frost but with all the rain and moderate temperatures the weeds and grass in the yard were lush and thick.  As you can see from the picture the yard is greener now than it was this past summer when the heat and drought had turned everything brown.  I mowed very little this past summer due to the drought.  However mowing is better, in my humble opinion, than shoveling snow.
Visiting mother Saturday, she made the wall hangings.
The Song of Songs sermons are going very well.  I rushed the sermon on Sunday a bit and left out some of the details about the text which will be in the book.  The sermon this coming Sunday will be more difficult than them all up to this point.  It is not a matter of understanding what it means but rather how to deliver the message in such a way as to be discreet and "G" rated; All this and still give the people as full an understanding as possible.
Arianna in France, no mowing there in Feb.
I will be putting some statistics in our church bulletin this coming Sunday which I find to be most interesting and informative.  In the nine years I have been at Walnut Street Missionary Baptist Church we have lost 31 members due to death.  45% of our current active membership joined our church in the past 9 years.  That means that 55% of our congregation were here before I became pastor.  The average term for a pastor has been 4.7 years.  The longest term was 18 years, Pastor Paul Owens from 1974-1992.  Next to him was Pastor Luther Crawford who stayed 10 years from 1964 to 1974.  If I make it to December I will surpass him when I start my 11th year here.  Time has past very quickly. 
My mother continues to do well.  My mother-in-law does also.  We are planning to visit with our Lorena friends Thursday morning and head over to Henderson from there.  My son-in-law, Justin, has painted a small bench for my mother-in-law and we will go by their house on Thursday to pick it up for her.  Of course that means we will see Naomi.  God bless you.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Tuesday at the Ladies Bible study at our house (birthdays)
It has been a busy week and things unexpected and unplanned have kept me from getting more done.  These things of which I speak were things that needed to be done and I am not displeased with them or that they have kept me from my goal.  God's plans for our day are better than our own.
There were not many in my class Wednesday night but where 2 or 3 are gathered in His name He is in their midst. Janie and I went to see Naomi and her parents.  They were doing well and we enjoyed having supper with them.  Friday I spent with Janie and her mother.  I needed to take care of some business in Tyler which did not pan out like I had expected.  We spent Friday evening at the cottage and watched some movies. 
Naomi eating in Janie's lap
This morning I got up and worked on typing up the sermon for Sunday.  That is finished now and Janie and I have just gotten back from taking a walk down the road.  They are about to put a pipe line across our property and we walked down to see where they had flagged the trees marking where the pipe line will be. I am anxious to see what the property will look like without the jungle even if it is only a 50 foot wide path across it.  I need to continue the project of clearing the land behind the cottage.  I would like for that path to intersect the pipe line path when all is said and done.
Sarah and Justin's new puppy
We are going to go by and see my mother on our way back to Hillsboro this afternoon.  I am looking forward to seeing how she is doing. 
It has rained all night and even some today but tomorrow is suppose to be sunny and pleasant.  I am hoping for a big crowd at church tomorrow.  God bless you.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Let it Snow

The special music right before the sermon
As we left for church tonight it was snowing.  This was not in the forecast.  I have been making remarks to my Facebook friends in Massachusetts about our warm winter and when I looked the other day it was the same temperature here as there and now it is snowing.  What's up with that?  The snow did not stick of course for the ground is way to warm for that.
We had really good services today and I believe that things, for the most part, are looking up for our church.  The attendance was good even though we had many out sick.  The sermon this morning went longer than normal which was surprising because I thought it would actually be shorter than the other sermons from the Song of Songs.  The special in music was a song entitled "If the Rapture were yesterday would you still be here today?" The lady who sang it did an outstanding job!
Cole, the young boy in Janie's Sunday School class
This week will be a busy one as I get back to the grindstone after vacation.  I will be preaching at the nursing home at 10:00 and then take care of some business in town before going to the office for some serious thesis writing.  God bless you. 
This bloom caught my eye right before time to leave for church
Naomi on Saturday, we went by to see her on our way back to Hillsboro

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Good Vacation

Janie at the cemetery, trying to stay out of camera shot
It was a good vacation.  Our oldest daughter and her five children left this afternoon about 3 and Janie and I went to the State park near by to see if the lake was up and then over to see her mother by way of the cemetery.  One of the flower arrangements had fallen over and we took it away to see if it could be fixed up. When we arrived at my mother-in-law's I helped her with a computer question while Janie fixed her some supper.  She hopes to be able to be in church this Sunday. 
Fallen flowers
It was nice to have the grandkids share in our vacation.  The kids helped cut down some small trees and blazed a short trail through the woods behind the cottage.  They enjoy working in the woods.  I am trying to clear a path back to the property line and they have been a big help with that job.  While they worked clearing land and blazing trails I cut out another portable picnic table and have it ready to sand and paint.
We took the grandkids with their mother in tow to see Janie's mother and my mother on Thursday.  My mother is doing very well and seems happy.  She was picking at the two youngest boys tickling them which reminded me of my grandfather for he use to like tickling us when we were little. 
Built a guard around the stove pipe in the loft
We ate supper with Janie's mother which was basically a potluck supper.  We brought leftovers and combined them with her leftovers and food prepared by Janie's niece.  It was good and our granddaughter, Ruth, helped clean up the mess afterward.  I took the kids for a short walk and our grandson, Joshua, got to give his new skateboard a workout.  Janie's mother is having some problems with her feet and is going back to the doctor on Monday.  I installed a couple of new hand holds around her bathtub while we were there on Thursday.  It has been a very productive vacation and most of all I have relaxed at least mentally and am ready to hit the ground running again come Sunday.
My Blog may be much neglected in the next two months as I put forth my best effort to finish my doctoral thesis.  I need to turn in the ruff draft by early April so I can get the corrections made and the book printed by the middle of May.  Janie may not be seeing much of me as I make this final push for the finish line.  My stress level will be greatly reduced once this task is done.  Enjoy some of the pictures I have posted below of our vacation. God bless you.
Elijah, one messy, tired little boy
Spring flowers are here early
Movie night with the grandkids
A propane tank becomes a school bus
A visit with my mother
Trying out Papa's breakdown picnic table
Jonathan and Elijah playing on Papa's trailer
Mother and me after the nursing home service Sunday

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Grandkids in the House

Supper at the cottage with the grandkids
The grandkids arrived last night and the spoiling began.  We have fixed the upstairs for the kids to sleep and to watch TV.  We let them watch a cartoon while we fixed them some supper.  We let them stay up late knowing full well they would still rise early.  It was up and at um this morning with a pan full of biscuits and an assortment of homemade jellies.  Though it is damp and cold outside, 50 degrees, they are loving being in the country.  Joshua has a new skate board and is out there on the oil road giving it a workout.  It looks like it is going to be a glorious day.  God bless you.
Our grandkids enjoying a movie waiting for supper

Monday, February 6, 2012

A Rare Preaching Engagement

Childproofing the rail upstairs at the cottage
It may be a very rare event when I am able to preach at the nursing home where mother is.  Janie and I attended services at a Baptist church which is just a little over a mile from the cottage.  One of my TBI instructors is the pastor there.  The services were really good and the message the pastor preached was outstanding.  We returned to the cottage for lunch and then loaded mother's chair and sewing machine up and headed off to see her.  We put her things in her room and visited for a few minutes before heading to the cafeteria for the services.  Janie played the very old upright piano which they had while I led the singing.  I preached a sermon entitled "The Ultimate Destination of the Child of God."  We stayed after the services to visit a while with mother. She is doing really well and was glad to have her sewing machine.
Mother this afternoon after the services
The rail that surrounds the staircase upstairs needed to be child proof so we bought some lattice and got the job done.  The grandkids will be here this week and we don't want to worry about them falling down the stairs.
A man from a pipeline company stopped by the other day to negotiate with us terms for putting a pipeline across our property.  It will be on the very western edge of the property and they will be clearing a path 50 feet wide the length of our property line.  It will be good to have the land cleared for it is a jungle right now.  In the 35 years we have owned this place we have never done anything constructive with it.  We bought this 7.555 acres with the house that was on it for $12,500.00 by the time we got it paid off after 15 years it actually cost us about $24,000.00. 
My mother-in-law's birthday present
Having sold the timber and having received royalty payments over the years for the minerals and now being paid for a pipeline right of way the land has more than paid for itself.  Most of the north western part of our land is flood prone and useless for building.  The pipe line will be in that area so it will be no huge loss to us.  God truly blessed us back in 1976, as He has all through our lives. 
The grandkids will be here tomorrow and that is exciting to us.  I have work all lined out for them.  We will go over to see my mother-in-law to do some work there and then over to let the grandkids see my mother.  If the weather is pretty we will sit around a camp fire in the evenings and will build another knock down picnic table and clear some land.  It is going to be a really good time.  God bless you.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

We'll Work

Janie and me waiting at the hospital
Wednesday Janie and I were at a hospital in Waco for a good part of the day.  We had a church member who was having fairly major surgery and she came through it just fine.  We got something to eat immediately afterward and then while Janie worked with the laptop for Sullivan Supply I went shopping at Best Buy.  I had gotten a gift card from a couple at our church and had found just what I wanted.  We returned to Hillsboro and got ready for our Wednesday evening services.  I had an extra large class and the discussion was really good.  Janie also had a good class.
Janie's wardrobe
We had planned to go to Canton on Thursday but instead we stayed around the house in Hillsboro getting some things done there.  I finished Janie's wardrope and we moved it into place. 
Friday Janie spent with her mother as I spent it with mine.  Mother is doing very well. She seems happy and her memory seems to be okay for the most part. She right off the bat apologised for the way she treated Janie and me on our last visit. She has put the family pictures back on the walls of her room. She said she took them down because she was mad at us but she is not mad at us any more so she put them back up.  I brought her a phone but it did not have the cord with it so I took her to Walmart where we got that and some yarn for her.  She did not think they would let her leave the building but I assured her that they would.
Mother's Room; Talking on her new phone.
I am going to preach at her nursing home Sunday afternoon at 2:30.  I am really looking forward to it.  She seems excited by that prospect.  She asked me to bring her other glider chair to her along with her sewing machine.  She really takes that old gospel song serious which says "We'll work till Jesus comes."
I had lunch today with Steve and Teresa.  They had just been to see mother and it was good to get a heads up on what to expect.
Janie and I are planning to go to Canton tomorrow. It looks like it is going to be a beautiful day for it.  God bless you.