Welcome to my blog, or should I say to the ramblings of an old man. I doubt that my ramblings are of much value, but at least I have an opportunity to share them.  So, please be kind and humor me. If nothing else of value stands out in these thoughts, I hope that you at least sense the value I place on a daily walk with the Lord.  That walk is what has provided me with motivation and a sense of purpose throughout my lifetime.  My prayer is that you, too, are experiencing this direction and joy in daily living which is available to everyone who puts his trust in Christ.  So, thanks again for joining me.  Please don't go without leaving some comments here so I can get to know you better as our paths intersect today in this blog.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Lord You're Holy


          Recently I was searching on the internet for one of my favorite worship songs and I was surprised to find a rendition of it that just stirred my heart and mind.  The song which I think isn't too well known is "Lord You're Holy".  I first heard it sung a few years ago by a group called "Calling Levi" at the Pinebrook Bible Conference.  It touched me then and continues to do so every time I hear it.  And I believe this time the Lord led me to this stirring rendition because I needed it again.  Now the words speak for themselves but it is the section that shares many of the attributes of our God that really touches me.  Now I invite you to listen to this rendition and, if you aren't also stirred, maybe you need to ask this holy God to bring back the springtime in your life.


Listen to it here:
LORD YOU'RE HOLY

          As I look around and I see 
all the works, your hands have made, 
the awesomeness of you
and how your love will never fade. 
Mere words cannot express what I feel inside,
I can't even describe Your glory divine;
but as a token of my love, this is what I'll do,
I'll lift my hands and cry.
Lord, you're holy, Lord, you're holy
and we lift you up and magnify your name.

There's not enough words that I can say
to tell you how much I appreciate,
all of the wonderful things You've given me,
Your love, Your kindness, Your tender mercies
It's my desire to praise you
And tell you how much I love you
Your worthy of all the honor
And your worthy of all the praise

I don't know how you can love me
Why you give me so much mercy and 
How you would suffer and die for me 
way back on Calvary
But I thank you 
Your worthy of all the praise

Your Wonderful, glorious, holy and righteous,
victorious conqueror, triumphant and mighty,
healer, deliverer, shield and defense,
my strong tower and my best friend,
Omnipotent, Omnipresent, soon coming King,
Your Alpha, Omega, Lord of everything;
holy, holy, holy is Your name.

Your Omnipotent, Omnipresent, soon coming King,
Your Alpha, Omega, Lord of everything;
holy, holy, holy is Your name.

Holy is your name
We cry holy
You are Holy 
Holy is your name

Wonderful, glorious, holy and righteous,
victorious conqueror, triumphant and mighty,
healer, deliverer, shield and defense,
strong tower and my best friend,
Omnipotent, Omnipresent, soon coming King,
Alpha, Omega, Lord of everything;
holy, holy, holy is Your name.

Omnipotent, Omnipresent, soon coming King, 
You're Alpha, Omega, Lord of everything; 
holy, holy, holy is Your name.

Holy, You are holy 
Holy is your name

You are holy 
We cry holy
Holy is your name

Sunday, July 8, 2018

PRAY FOR A MIRACLE

Their faces look out at us from our big screen TVs.

          Twelve Thai boys and one soccer coach huddle in a cave, couched over a narrow ledge. They were missing for nine days, but now that they are found, they are confoundedly trapped. They are safe, but things are deteriorating. The oxygen levels in the cave are lowering and rains are forecast that could flood their exit route. As the old saying goes, all the kings’ horses and all the kings’ men . . . all the world’s resources and advanced technology have been helpless to deliver them to their families and safety.
          Day after day the entire world stands by helplessly.
          I woke up early this morning, turned on the news to see if there was any development on their behalf. They have written letters to their parents. “Don’t worry about me. I am OK.” “I can’t wait to eat everything.” Their boyish assurances, meant to comfort their parents, will not convince parents who know they are anything but OK.
          This morning I also saw a FB post by Wess Stafford, President Emeritus of Compassion and an Awana board member, calling all of us to believe in and practice prayer on behalf of these boys. I agree this is the time for the Kings’ people to pray . . . the kings’ horses and kings’ men need the power of prayer on their behalf. Let’s pray for a miraculous delivery for these young boys.
          I had a conversation with my sister yesterday about prayer. She is hospitalized and in a serious condition right now. She herself needs prayer. As we spent the day together in her hospital room, she shared that she has been studying Mother Teresa’s life. At one time Mother Teresa was trying to rescue a group of special needs children caught behind enemy lines in a war zone. The army general told her there was no way to rescue those children without a cease fire. That tiny woman looked him in the eyes and said, “Tomorrow there will be a cease fire.” When that next morning dawned, bathed in prayers as it was for the release of those children, there was a cease fire and the children were evacuated to safety.
         Let’s pray for these children. Let the prayers rise from God’s people in Kenya and Norway and Bangladesh and Brazil. Let us cover these children with prayers in English and Korean and Swahili.
          Pray. Pray, Pray. Pray that soon there will be a miracle.
(Reprinted from an Awana post by Valerie Bell on Facebook)

Thursday, July 5, 2018

God Bless America


           This week we in the United States will celebrate Independence Day.  Parades and other community activities will help us remember and celebrate the freedoms that we have enjoyed through the sacrifices of many courageous people over the years.

          But over the years we have often failed to remember the religious heritage on which our country was built.  In fact, today organizations like the ACLU have worked to rid us of those facts.  History taught in our schools has been revised and facts about our religious foundation are eliminated.
           But if any open-minded person really looks at our early documents they will see how important faith in God was to our leaders in the days of founding this great country.  So because of the holiday, I have decided to share with you the preambles of the constitutions and documents of our states.

          Alabama 1901, "We the people of the State of Alabama , invoking the favor and guidance of Almighty God, do ordain and establish the following Constitution.."
          Alaska 1956, "We, the people of Alaska , grateful to God and to those who founded our nation and pioneered this great land. "
          Arizona 1911, "We, the people of the State of Arizona , grateful to Almighty God for our liberties, do ordain this Constitution..". 
          Arkansas 1874, "We, the people of the State of Arkansas, grateful to Almighty God for the privilege of choosing our own form of government..". 
          California 1879, "We, the People of the State of California , grateful to Almighty God for our freedom.".. 
          Colorado 1876, "We, the people of Colorado , with profound reverence for the Supreme Ruler of Universe..". 
          Connecticut 1818, "The People of Connecticut, acknowledging with gratitude the good Providence of God in permitting them to enjoy." 
          Delaware 1897, "Through Divine Goodness all men have, by nature, the rights of worshiping and serving their Creator according to the dictates of their consciences." 
          Florida 1885, "We, the people of the State of Florida , grateful to Almighty God for our constitutional liberty, establish this Constitution.".. 
          Georgia 1777, "We, the people of Georgia , relying upon protection and guidance of Almighty God, do ordain and establish this Constitution.".. 
          Hawaii 1959, "We, the people of Hawaii , Grateful for Divine Guidance ... Establish this Constitution. "
          Idaho 1889, "We, the people of the State of Idaho , grateful to Almighty God for our freedom, to secure its blessings. "
          Illinois 1870,  We, the people of the State of Illinois, grateful to Almighty God for the civil , political and religious liberty which He hath so long permitted us to enjoy and looking to Him for a blessing on our endeavors." 
          Indiana 1851, "We, the People of the State of Indiana , grateful to Almighty God for the free exercise of the right to choose our form of government. "
          Iowa 1857, "We, the People of the State of Iowa , grateful to the Supreme Being for the blessings hitherto enjoyed, and feeling our dependence on Him for a continuation of these blessings, establish this Constitution. 
          Kansas 1859, "We, the people of Kansas , grateful to Almighty God for our civil and religious privileges establish this Constitution." 
          Kentucky 1891, "We, the people of the Commonwealth are grateful to Almighty God for the civil, political and religious liberties.". 
          Louisiana 1921, "We, the people of the State of Louisiana , grateful to Almighty God for the civil, political and religious liberties we enjoy." 
          Maine 1820, "We the People of Maine acknowledging with grateful hearts the goodness of the Sovereign Ruler of the Universe in affording us an opportunity .. And imploring His aid and direction. "
           Maryland 1776, "We, the people of the state of Maryland , grateful to Almighty God for our civil and religious liberty..". 
           Massachusetts 1780, "We...the people of Massachusetts, acknowledging with grateful hearts, the goodness of the Great Legislator of the Universe In the course of His Providence, an opportunity and devoutly imploring His direction "
          Michigan 1908, "We, the people of the State of Michigan , grateful to Almighty God for the blessings of freedom, establish this Constitution. "
          Minnesota, 1857, "We, the people of the State of Minnesota , grateful to God for our civil and religious liberty, and desiring to perpetuate its blessings:" 
          Mississippi 1890, "We, the people of Mississippi in convention assembled, grateful to Almighty God, and invoking His blessing on our work." 
          Missouri 1845, Preamble "We, the people of Missouri , with profound reverence for the Supreme Ruler of the Universe, and grateful for His goodness - Establish this Constitution.".. 
          Montana 1889,  "We, the people of Montana , grateful to Almighty God for the blessings of liberty establish this Constitution.".
          Nebraska 1875, "We, the people, grateful to Almighty God for our freedom. Establish this Constitution." 
          Nevada 1864, "We the people of the State of Nevada , grateful to Almighty God for our freedom, establish this Constitution..". 
          New Hampshire 1792, Part I.. Art. I. Sec. V  "Every individual has a natural and unalienable right to worship God according to the dictates of his own conscience."
          New Jersey 1844, "We, the people of the State of New Jersey, grateful to Almighty God for civil and religious liberty which He hath so long permitted us to enjoy, and looking to Him for a blessing on our endeavors." 
          New Mexico 1911, "We, the People of New Mexico, grateful to Almighty God for the blessings of liberty.". 
          New York 1846, "We, the people of the State of New York , grateful to Almighty God for our freedom, in order to secure its blessings."
          North Carolina 1868, "We the people of the State of North Carolina, grateful to Almighty God, the Sovereign Ruler of Nations, for our civil, political, and religious liberties, and acknowledging our dependence upon Him for the continuance of those..". 
          North Dakota 1889, "We, the people of North Dakota , grateful to Almighty God for the blessings of civil and religious liberty, do ordain..". 
          Ohio 1852, "We the people of the state of Ohio , grateful to Almighty God for our freedom, to secure its blessings and to promote our common." 
          Oklahoma 1907, "Invoking the guidance of Almighty God, in order to secure and perpetuate the blessings of liberty, establish this "
          Oregon 1857, Bill of Rights, Article I Section 2. "All men shall be secure in the Natural right, to worship Almighty God according to the dictates of their consciences '
          Pennsylvania 1776, "We, the people of Pennsylvania , grateful to Almighty God for the blessings of civil and religious liberty, and humbly invoking His guidance..".
          Rhode Island 1842, "We the People of the State of Rhode Island grateful to Almighty God for the civil and religious liberty which He hath so long permitted us to enjoy, and looking to Him for a blessing...". 
          South Carolina , 1778, "We, the people of the State of South Carolina grateful to God for our liberties, do ordain and establish this Constitution."
          South Dakota 1889, "We, the people of South Dakota , grateful to Almighty God for our civil and religious liberties. "
          Tennessee 1796, Art. XI.III. "That all men have a natural and indefeasible right to worship Almighty God according to the dictates of their conscience..." 
          Texas 1845, "We the People of the Republic of Texas , acknowledging, with gratitude, the grace and beneficence of God. "
          Utah 1896, "Grateful to Almighty God for life and liberty, we establish this Constitution." 
           Vermont 1777, "Whereas all government ought to enable the individuals who compose it to enjoy their natural rights, and other blessings which the Author of Existence has bestowed on man." 
           Virginia 1776, Bill of Rights, XVI  "Religion, or the Duty which we owe our Creator can be directed only by Reason and that it is the mutual duty of all to practice Christian Forbearance, Love and Charity towards each other "
           Washington 1889, "We the People of the State of Washington , grateful to the Supreme Ruler of the Universe for our liberties, do ordain this Constitution "
          West Virginia 1872, "Since through Divine Providence we enjoy the blessings of civil, political and religious liberty, we, the people of West Virginia reaffirm our faith in and constant reliance upon God ...." 
           Wisconsin 1848, "We, the people of Wisconsin , grateful to Almighty God for our freedom, domestic tranquility."...
          Wyoming 1890, "We, the people of the State of Wyoming , grateful to God for our civil, political, and religious liberties, establish this Constitution..." 
          And we weren't founded as a "Christian nation" ?   After reviewing acknowledgments of God from all 50 state constitutions, one is faced with the prospect that maybe the ACLU, the liberals and the out-of-control federal courts are wrong! Let us retain God in America !
          GOD BLESS AMERICA !

Saturday, June 30, 2018

Heat Waves And AC


          So do you long for the "good old days?"  Do you yearn to go back to the way things were when life seemed simpler?  Maybe your opinion depends upon how old you are.

          Now for those who have good memories of the past, let me just share with you a simple phrase - heat wave!  Heat and humidity, as we are presently experiencing, can be very hard to bear - especially without air conditioning!
          Unfortunately I remember the days before air conditioning and what we often had to do just to survive.  And survive we did.
          My parents grew up and lived most of their lives without air conditioning.  In their later years they did have two window conditioners that provided some relief.  But they never  had central air and they never complained because that is all they really knew all of their lives.
          As a youngster, I remember "suffering" with the heat. On the worst nights I would take a pillow downstairs to the living room and try to get comfortable on the floor in front of the open side door.  Sometimes a slight breeze could be felt there.  And there was nothing else we could do.  It was the best we could do.
          And until I went to college my parents never had a car with air conditioning.  In the early years only the "rich" had ac in their cars ands we certainly weren't rich.  We drove with all the windows open. Now when you buy a car you just assume that it has ac.
          When we were first married we bought a large window fan that used to pull in the cooler air through other open windows.  That provided a little relief.  A few years later we bought a window air conditioner and that was an excellent improvement.  Finally in 1991 we were able to afford to invest in central air and it was like heaven.  Now I don't know how we'd survive without it.
          But my worst experiences without ac came during my first 25 years of teaching. During those years I taught and had my office on the third floor of a building with a flat roof.  Because of the layout of the rooms there was little cross ventilation.  And my office and the classrooms that I usually taught in were on the morning sun side of the building and caught the early morning rays of sun.  Often when I began the day, the rooms were already at 90 degrees.  And the temperature never dropped throughout the day.
          Teaching and working in those conditions was a major challenge.  I would often be soaked by the end of the first period.  Eventually we bought a floor fan for each math classroom to try and at least move some air.  And while we proposed some possible solutions with large exhaust fans to the administration, nobody was willing to provide the funds to do so.  And they didn't even appear in our area during those times. And, of course, the office area was air conditioned.  It was probably the only time in my life that I actually enjoyed attending meetings when they were held in the office area.
         I don't know how anybody actually learned anything in that situation during the hot days of the late spring and late summer months.
         My biggest joy came when our building was finally remodeled and expanded.  And everything was then air conditioned.  What a change! Teaching then was again fun.
          We also spent a summer in Florida while I was attending Florida State.  And it was hot, but everything there was air conditioned and that made it bearable.  However, it actually wasn't as humid there as it usually is in Lancaster County.
          Now you younger readers really have no understanding of what I am sharing.  Be glad you don't.  But for you older readers who yearn for the "good old days", maybe you should think about how things really were.  And pray that you don't lose your electricity and ac in these miserable hot and humid days.

Saturday, June 23, 2018

Phone Menus


          Isn't it "fun" when you are trying to reach somebody on the phone and you first get a whole menu of options which you must listen to so that you can eventually navigate to the person you need to talk to?  Often it can become an Anxiety Hotline, especially if you are in a hurry.
          And often one of the biggest challenges is trying to find a way to actually talk to a real person about your problem.  Then when you finally find the right way to get to a real person you often end up with a message that says "I am out of my office. Please leave your number and I will get back to you as soon as I can" (maybe when they get back from vacation).
         Well for those of us who get bothered by these phone menus, recently I came upon the choices for a real Anxiety Hotline.  How would you like to be greeted by the following choices?
          If you are obsessive-compulsive, press 1 repeatedly.
          If you are co-dependent, please ask somebody to press 2 for you.
          If you have multiple personalities, press 3, 4, 5, and 6.
          If you are paranoid, we know who you are and what you want.  Stay on the line so that we can trace your call.
          If you are delusional, press 7 so that your call can be transferred to the mother ship.
          If you are schizophrenic, listen carefully and a small voice will tell you which number to press.
          If you are manic-depressive, it doesn't matter which number you press, no one will answer.
          If you are dyslexic, press 969696969696969.
          If you have a nervous disorder, please fidget with the hash key until a representative comes on line.
          If you have amnesia, press 8, and state your name, address, phone number, date of birth, social security number, and your mother's maiden name.
          If you have post-traumatic stress disorder, slowly and carefully press 000.
          If you have bi-polar disorder, please leave a message after the beep or before the beep. Or after the beep.  Please wait for the beep.
          If you have short-term memory loss, press 9.  If you have short-term memory loss, press 9.  If you have short-term memory loss, press 9.
          If you have low esteem, please hang up.  All of our operators are too busy to talk to you.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

A Special Man


          Every Father's Day I especially think of my dad and what he meant to me.  He loved the Lord and devoted his life to serving Him.   He knew  how to trust the Lord when facing adversity.  My father knew how to work hard.  He was very wise. He loved his family.   He was a very special man.  I just wish that I could be half the father that he was to me.

          It would take pages for me to write about all that he taught me and what I observed while he was living.  But one thing that always impressed me was how he knew that all that he had was really the Lords.
          Dad didn't have a car until I was in first grade.  But when he finally had one, it was dedicated to the Lord.  For years every Sunday he picked up folks to take to church, even when it meant going way out of his way.  We picked up kids, or more often adults, who needed a ride.  One of those that he often picked up was an overweight lady - probably over 300 pounds - who had to be very hard on the springs of his car.  But dad never complained as we transported her to church.
          Dad was extremely influential in the founding of our church in Lancaster.  He worked with the denomination to get it started.  He helped the builders and spent hours doing things like painting the walls of the new building. and pouring cement walks.  He served as a teacher, an elder, delegate and financial treasurer for decades.  One thing that I learned later in life, that nobody else knew, was though he had little money, when our struggling church couldn't pay all of its bills, dad quietly gave enough to pay them.  Often he bailed out our church and nobody ever knew it.  He showed that all that he had - his, time, money and possessions - belonged to the Lord.
          Dad spent hours behind the scenes doing work for our church, our denomination, CBMC, Berean Bible School, Calvary Homes and Lancaster Christian School.  He was faithful in doing this work and spent many hours serving .  Actually, just hours before he died, he even completed reports for the denomination's Board of Directors which was meeting the morning of his death.  I found the reports ready to go and actually delivered them for him.
          In 1969 when our denomination closed our sister church in Millersville and could not find a buyer for the property, dad bought it.  He sold us what had been the parsonage.  Later he rented the basement church structure to a variety of groups and probably lost money on that.  Finally he was able to sell it to the local Lions Club.  But he still had about two acres of the land that would be too expensive for him to develop.  For many years we and a neighboring farmer grew things there.  I don't think he ever charged the farmer for using it.  So for years the land sat there with no prospects to sell or develop it.  And he still had to pay the taxes every year.
          Then suddenly a developer purchased some adjoining land and offered to buy dad's land,  In the Lord's perfect timing, this was the same time when our church was purchasing another property for our new church.  Dad was able to work out a deal to give his land to our church who then was able to sell it to the developer.  So this land which once belonged to our denomination provided a considerable gift to help get out new church started. Neither he nor I received anything from this sale, but dad was thrilled with the knowledge that after many years this "investment " could return to the Lord's work.
          Dad also taught me the importance of being faithful in attending the Lord's house.  Whenever the doors of the church were open, we were there.  I still remember when I was on little league baseball and football teams dad would pull up at 7 pm and I had to leave with my family to attend prayer meeting.  I now realize that dad knew that I would never be a star player, but he did know that I could become a man of God.  And today I thank him for doing that.
          But I guess one of the biggest lessons I learned from dad came with his experience at RCA.  He worked there for many years.  As a manager he was going through a process of laying off people in his department.  This was hard for him to do.  And after completing that process, when he walked in one Friday he was told that his job also was being eliminated.  He had to pack his possessions and immediately leave the plant.  While this was very hard on my mother, dad accepted it as the Lord's will.  He never complained but went about finding other jobs.  He did things like substitute in schools, complete income tax forms for people and a variety of other things.  He never missed a day of work.  Finally the Lord opened up a job as plant manager for the Osteopathic  Hospital.  Dad trusted the Lord and the Lord never failed him.  What a testimony that was for me.
          I could write much more about dad and his walk with the Lord throughout his life.  I was blest to have such a godly father who was a real example to me.  And I still miss him.

Saturday, June 9, 2018

Thinking of Retiring?


          Are you looking forward to retirement?  Well some folks never retire.  General Douglas MacArthur understood this when he famously stated, "Old soldiers never die, they just fade away."  That might be true for five-star generals, but here are some things that happen to others as they age.

* Golfers never retire, they just lose their drive.

* Lumberjacks never retire, they just pine away.
* Accountants never retire, they just lose their balance.
* Bank managers never retire, they just lose interest.
* Vehicle mechanics never retire, they re-tire every day.
* Roofers never retire, they just wipe the slate clean.
* Engineers never retire, they just lose their bearings.
* Beekeepers never retire, they just buzz off.
* Musicians never retire, they just decompose.
* Farmers never retire, they just go to seed.
* Watchmakers never retire, they just wind down.
* Academics never retire, they just lose their faculties.
* Painters never retire, they just put a gloss on it.
* Tree surgeons never retire, they just branch out.
* Old librarians never die, they just check out, become overdue, and lose their circulation.
* Old crossword puzzlers never die, they just go across and -- hopefully -- up.
* Old milkmaids never die, they just kick the bucket and lose their whey.
* Old plumbers never die, they just get out of sink and go down the drain.
* Old teachers never die, they just grade away and lose their principals, their faculties, and their class.
* Old math professors never die, they just go off on a tangent.
* Old mimes never die, they're just never heard from again.
* Old housemaids never die, they just return to dust.

(From "The Gift of Age" (c)2010 by Richard Lederer)

So what about you?  Why not leave me a comment to tell me what happens to those in your line of work?

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Change



        I grew up in the 50's, graduating from high school in 1959.  Those were good years and I have many great memories. But change happens and things have really changed since then.  Things that we never would have predicted or believed have happened and sometimes we forget all that has changed.  Well here are several comments that could have been made in the 50's.  Enjoy how things have changed.


          "If they raise the minimum wage to $1, nobody will be able to hire outside help at the store."          "Who would have thought gas would someday cost 50 cents a gallon."
          "Pretty soon you won't be able to buy a good 10 cent cigar."
          "Did you see where some baseball player just signed a contract for $75,000 a year just to play ball? It wouldn't surprise me if someday they'll be making more than the president."
          "Do you suppose television will ever reach our part of the country?"
          "I never thought I'd see the day when all our kitchen appliances would be electric. They are even making electric typewriters now."
          "It's too bad things are so tough nowadays. I see where a few married women are having to work to make ends meet."
          "Did you know the new church in town is allowing women to wear slacks to their service?"
          "Next thing you know is, the government will start paying us not to grow crops."
          "There is no sense going to Philadelphia or New York anymore for a weekend, It costs nearly $15 a night to stay in a hotel."
          "No one can afford to be sick any more, $35 a day in the hospital is too rich for my blood."
          "If a few idiots want to risk their necks flying across the country that's fine, but nothing will ever replace trains."
          "I don't know about you but if they raise the price of coffee to 15 cents, I'll just have to drink mine at home."
          "If they think I'll pay 50 cents for a hair cut, forget it. I'll have my wife learn to cut hair."
          "We won't be going out much any more. Our baby sitter informed us she wants 50 cents an hour. Kids think money grows on trees."

         Interesting.  Now I wonder what comments we are making now that we will laugh at  60 years from today.  What do you think?

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Time


          Time - something that we all wish that we had more of ... something that passes too quickly the older we get.  If you are like me, you often reflect upon the past and wonder where all the years have gone.  I look at my boys and my grandchildren and wonder how they can really be that old.  And how can I really be this old?  My how time flies!
         William Penn is said to have remarked, "Time is what we want most, but what we use worst."  Benjamin Franklin said, " Lost time is never found again."  Then it was Dr. Seuss who remarked, "How did it get so late so soon? It's night before it's afternoon.  December is here before it's June.  My goodness how the time has flewn.  How did it get so late so soon?"
        A Denis Waitley said, "Time is an equal opportunity employer.  Each human being has exactly the same number of hours and minutes every day.  Rich people can't buy more hours.  Scientists can't invent new minutes.  And you can't save time to spend it another day.  Even so, time is amazingly fair and forgiving.  No matter how much time you've wasted in the past, you still have an entire tomorrow."  And Tom Bennett has added, "Don't waste time in anger, regrets, worries and grudges.  Life is too short to be unhappy."
         Recently I was going through some items from by Grandpa Wolf's time as a pastor.  I came upon an old copy of "The Evangel", a monthly publication that he produced when he was pastor at the Emmanuel Bible Fellowship Church in Sunbury.  This one was dated February, 1965.  The front page included the poem "There's Time" by a Priscilla Leonard.


Life is never so short
But there's time for a song
To hearten the hours
As they hurry along:
Through the dark and the day
Its brave music can rise,
No matter how swiftly
Each winged second flies.

Life is never so short
But there's time for a deed
Of courtesy gentle
Of kindness in need:
Along the thronged highway
Where multitudes press
Each moment brings chances
To help and to bless.

Life is never so short
But there's time for a word
Of trust and of courage
Faint hearts to upgird;
Through the rush of the mart,
Through the din of the fray,
Hope finds ever its moment,
Faith conquers its way.


          So take some time in your day today to enjoy a good song, to do a good deed for somebody and to do something to encourage a "faint heart".  What a good use of our time that would be.

         A Michael Phillips has said, "The best things are never arrived at in haste.  God is not in a hurry.  His plans are never rushed."    Those thoughts remind me of one of my favorite choruses.  Meditate on these words.
1.   In His time, in His time,
He makes all things beautiful in His time.
Lord please show me every day
As You're teaching me Your way
That You do just what You say
In Your time.


2.   In Your time, in Your time,
You make all things beautiful in Your time.
Lord my life to You I bring 
May each song I have to sing
Be to you a lovely thing 
In Your time.

You can listen to this chorus here.    LISTEN

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Fwd: Things Only A Mom Could Teach



          I know the official Mother's Day is now over for another year, but I thought you might enjoy some of the memories that most of us have about our mothers.  Actually, everyday should be Mother's Day so I guess this blog is still appropriate. So here are some things our mothers taught us.

*     My Mother taught me about ANTICIPATION: "Just wait until your father gets home."
*     My Mother taught me about RECEIVING:. "You are going to get it when we get home!"
*    My Mother taught me to MEET A CHALLENGE:   "What were you thinking? Answer me when I talk to you ... Don't talk back to me!"
*    My Mother taught me LOGIC:  "Because I said so, that's why."  and also  "If you fall out of that swing and break your neck, you're not going to the store with me."
*    My Mother taught me MEDICAL SCIENCE:   "If you don't stop crossing your eyes, they are going to freeze that way."
*    My Mother taught me to THINK AHEAD:  "If you don't pass your spelling test, you'll never get a good job."
*    My Mother taught me ESP:   "Put your sweater on; don't you think I know when you're cold?"
*    My Mother taught me HUMOR:   "When that lawn mower cuts off your toes, don't come running to me."
*    My Mother taught me how to BECOME AN ADULT:   "If you don't eat your vegetables, you'll never grow up."
*    My Mother taught me about GENETICS:    "You're just like your father."
*    My Mother taught me about my ROOTS:   "Do you think you were born in a barn?"
*    My Mother taught me about WISDOM OF AGE:   "When you get to be my age, you will understand."
*    My Mother taught me about JUSTICE:   "One day you'll have kids, and I hope they turn out just like you. Then you'll see what it's like."
*    My mother taught me RELIGION: "You better pray that will come out of the carpet."
*    My mother taught me about TIME TRAVEL:  "If you don't straighten up, I'm going to knock you into the middle of next week!"
*    My mother taught me FORESIGHT:  "Make sure you wear clean underwear, in case you're in an accident."
*    My mother taught me IRONY:  "Keep crying and I'll *give* you something to cry about."
*    My mother taught me about the science of OSMOSIS:    "Shut your mouth and eat your supper!"
*    My mother taught me about CONTORTIONISM:   "Will you *look* at the dirt on the back of your neck!"
*    My mother taught me about STAMINA:  "You'll sit there until all that spinach is finished."
*    My mother taught me about WEATHER:   "It looks as if a tornado swept through your room."
*    My mother taught me how to solve PHYSICS PROBLEMS:   "If I yelled because I saw a meteor coming toward you, would you listen then?"
*    My mother taught me about HYPOCRISY:  "If I've told you once, I've told you a million times: Don't Exaggerate!!!"
*    My mother taught me THE CIRCLE OF LIFE:   "I brought you into this world, and I can take you out."
*    My mother taught me about BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION:    "Stop acting like your father!"
*    My mother taught me about ENVY:   "There are millions of less fortunate children in this world who don't have wonderful parents like you do!"

          Thank you mother for all the valuable lessons you taught us!

Saturday, May 12, 2018

My Regrets


          Mothers need to be celebrated!  So, President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed May 9, 1914, as the first Mother's Day. He asked Americans on that day to give a public "thank you" to their mothers and all mothers.  However, some say that the first Mother's Day in America was actually established by Anna Jarvis and was celebrated at St. Andrew's Methodist Church in Grafton, West Virginia, on May 10, 1908.

         No matter when the first celebration actually was, possibly thanks to Hallmark and other card companies, it has continued and really grown in popularity.  Today thousands celebrate by sending cards or flowers, taking their mothers out to eat, visiting with them or at least calling them.
          Now I have very few regrets in life, but one is that I should have done much more for my mother, not only on Mother's Day, but throughout her life.  Now that I am older I am beginning to realize how much visits from family members really mean to an aging parent. Visits mean so much more than even gifts or going our to eat.  There is nothing better to a parent than spending time with their children. I should have done so much more when I could have.
          In our family we never really celebrated special days, except maybe Christmas.  Others have big birthday parties and special days have special elaborate celebrations.  But that isn't the way we were raised.  But I know now that tradition isn't a good excuse.
           Unfortunately, some of us learn those lessons too late in life when things can no longer be changed.  I loved my mother.  I couldn't have asked for a better one.  I miss talking to her.  I would love to be able to tell her once again that I love her.
          Fortunately, the Lord prompted all of us to visit her the night before she unexpectedly was killed in an auto accident.  That was unusual and I thank the Lord that He prompted all of us to do that.  That is a time that I will never forget and I would have felt horrible if I had been too busy to be there.
          My mother lived a very challenging life.  As a youngster she lived through the Depression and her family had very little in the way of material goods.  Then she and my father lived through World War II and the postwar era when jobs were very limited.  For years they lived without an automobile.  They always had large gardens in order to feed us. They made nine different moves until dad was finally able to get a full-time job in Lancaster where he then worked for 25 years.  All those moves must have been very hard for her.  But I never heard her complain about it.
          Those days were challenging.  I remember how excited we would be as kids when mother would have an extra quarter and allow us to purchase a bottle of soda as a treat for the family.
          My mother had the gift of hospitality and we often had visiting missionaries and students staying with us.  She was very active in serving the Lord, teaching Good News Clubs in our homes and teaching Sunday School classes.  Her love for the Lord was a major influence in my life.
          Most people don't know that in her latter years she had many difficult physical problems and despite many visits to specialists and many tests, nobody was able to diagnose her problems or give her any relief from her pain.  I hate to admit this, but at times I began to think that much of this was just in her mind.  But now I have become my mother and am having the same discouraging problems.  Oh how wrong I was to think this about her.  But maybe my family now thinks the same about me.
          Now I still miss her and wish that once again I could call or visit her.  I miss knowing that she was praying for me.  I miss knowing that she loved me and was proud of things that I was able to do.  I miss being able to share with her my joys, my fears and my sorrows.  I wish that I had been a better son.
          If your parents are still alive, please make sure that one day you don't have similar regrets.  The greatest gift that you can give them is you.  Do that now while you still can.  Those times pass too quickly.  Here today, gone tomorrow!

Saturday, May 5, 2018

Tombstones


          Sometimes it can be interesting to walk through a cemetery and read the tombstones.  Growing up I lived a block away from the Moravian Cemetery in Lititz.  There I used to enjoy reading the tombstones which date back to before the Revolutionary War.  The cemetery also contains the tombstones of many of the former citizens and families that I knew growing up in Lititz. And my parents are now buried there.  
          One summer while I was in college I worked digging graves in a cemetery in Sunbury where my in-laws are now buried. There I recognized the graves of many of the former members of the church that I attended and often had heard many of the "old-timers" talk about. 
          But, I must admit that I never have come upon tombstones as crazy as these.


Harry Edsel Smith of Albany, New York: 
Born 1903-Died 1942 Looked up the elevator shaft to see if the car was on the way down. It was.

In a Thurmont, Maryland, cemetery: 
Here lies an Atheist 
All dressed up And no place to go.

In a London, England cemetery: 
Here lies Ann Mann, 
Who lived an old maid 
But died an old Mann. 
Dec.  8, 1767

In a Ribbesford, England, cemetery: 
Anna Wallace: 
The children of Israel wanted bread, 
And the Lord sent them manna. 
Old clerk Wallace wanted a wife, 
And the Devil sent him Anna.

In a Ruidoso, New Mexico, cemetery: 
Here lies Johnny Yeast. 
Pardon me For not rising.

In a Uniontown, Pennsylvania, cemetery: 
Here lies the body of Jonathan Blake. 
Stepped on the gas 
Instead of the brake.

In a Silver City, Nevada, cemetery: 
Here lays The Kid. 
We planted him raw. 
He was quick on the trigger 
But slow on the draw.

A lawyer's epitaph in England: 
Sir John Strange. 
Here lies an honest lawyer, 
And that is Strange.

John Penny's epitaph in the Wimborne, England, cemetery: 
Reader, if cash thou art In want of any, 
Dig 6 feet deep; 
And thou wilt find a Penny.

In a cemetery in Hartscombe, England: 
On the 22nd of June, 
Jonathan Fiddle Went out of tune.

Anna Hopewell's grave in Enosburg Falls,Vermont:
Here lies the body of our Anna - 
Done to death by a banana. 
It wasn't the fruit that laid her low, 
But the skin of the thing that made her go.

On a grave from the 1880s in Nantucket, Massachusetts: 
Under the sod and under the trees, 
Lies the body of Jonathan Pease. 
He is not here, there's only the pod. 
Pease shelled out and went to God.

In a cemetery in England:
Remember man, as you walk by, 
As you are now, so once was I. 
As I am now, you soon will be. 
Prepare yourself and follow me.

To which someone replied by writing on the tombstone:
To follow you I'll not consent 
Until I know which way you went

From Boot Hill, in Tombstone, Arizona: 
Here lies Lester Moore 
One slug from a 44 
No Les 
No More