Strict//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/DTD/xhtml1-strict.dtd"> EAGLES' REST: June 2010

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The Church of Glacier Bay.......



MEMBERSHIP: One.

LOCATION: Glacier Bay, Alaska.

Announces that Revival Services were held this past Monday.

The congregation wept. It could do nothing else.

He hideth my soul, in the cleft of the rock

That shelters a dry, thirsty land.

He hideth my life, in the depths of His love

And covers me, there, with His hand.

He covers me there, with His hand.

Monday, June 28, 2010

WHEN I THINK........

...that God spoke the earth into existence, I feel awe.

...that God saved my soul, i feel like shouting "Hallelujah!!"


...but ... when I gaze upon what He did in Alaska ...



I.

Am.

Speechless.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Facing Fears, God's Magnificence, and Other Stuff

That's me, with my (older) brother and Mom. I was probably about two, so this was likely in 1940. I don't remember it, but we'd stopped alongside a road somewhere (probably en route from Calumet City to Indianapolis) and Dad snapped this picture. And the post is partially, at least, about Mom and me.

Mother was deathly afraid of thunderstorms. Probably stemming from her childhood, she said that lightning and thunder had terrified her for as long as she remembered. But, as a young mother, she'd decided she didn't want that terror to show around her kids, and the only way she could think of to deal with it was to attack it head on. And she did just that.

Whenever a thunderstorm would hit the neighborhood we lived in, she'd pick me up and carry me to the front window, open the curtains, and tell me we were going to look at all the pretty lights in the sky. She said the lights made a big boom, but it was OK cuz we were in our house, nice and dry. When we'd get a big clap of thunder, she'd laugh and make some remark about it.

I never knew she was scared, until I was grown, and she told me.

One lasting legacy of her facing that fear was that, to this day, I love thunderstorms.

Which brings me to last Saturday afternoon. We had a thunderstorm here that we used to describe .. in Indiana .. as a "Trash Mover". It rained long and hard, and the lightning and thunder were just awesome.

I sat on our back deck, and just relished the moment, and was reminded that God produces dozens of these wonderful displays of power, every minute, somewhere on earth. And Jesus is Master over even the worst of them, as He showed some frightened fishermen on the Sea of Galilee, one day.

And this God, and this Savior, are the Ones Who tell me They love me! And want me to serve them!

Wow.

The storm was bad enough that our dusk-to-dawn light, on the little shed we built out back, came on at 2 in the afternoon.

I silently thanked my Mother for her facing of her fears, and showing me the pretty lights in the sky, when I was just a little kid. And that reminded me that the good we do, lives on, long after we physically leave this earth. In more ways than we'll know, this side of eternity.

See the settee and the chair in the photo? They're part of a set .. a table, eight chairs, a chaise, and the settee .. that Mom bought for us in the 1990's, after we'd enclosed the deck. Mom died in 1997, and years later I spent a good deal of time immensely enjoying her legacy, last Saturday afternoon.

Thanks, Mom. And, most of all, Thanks, God.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's Day, Dad

That's my dad, there, on the right. The picture was taken when he and Mom were on vacation in Colorado in 1962 .. which is kind of a long time ago .. but that's how I remember Dad.

That's who I see when I think of him.

He was an exceptional guy. For starters, when I was about 9 years old and had been struck by a real dread of dying .. I think that was my arrival at the "age of accountability" .. he's the one who noticed my distress, asked me about it, and reminded me of "what you heard in Bible School .. if you believe in Jesus, when you die, you go to heaven".

It was that moment at which I was saved.

But he did a lot more than that. First of all, my dominant "action shot" in my mind, of Dad, is his arrival at home from work. Mom would be on the lookout for him, as he always got home about 6, and she'd meet him at the front door. He'd grab her in a big hug, plant a smooch on her, and as he wrapped his arms around her, he'd play "patty cake" on her fanny with both hands. Now, I've heard that the most important thing a father can to for his kids (secularly speaking) is to love their mother, and Dad certainly did that in a visible way.

Second, he was fiercely protective of his family. Once, when a hobo tried to get through the back screen door, to get at Mom, Dad came roaring up out of the basement, ax in hand, putting the hobo to immediate (and frantic) flight. Another time, when a somewhat odd cousin of my (future) sister-in-law started harassing my brother, Dad looked him up and told him face-to-face that, if he took one more step to harass my brother, Dad would make his sole task in life to make him .. the cousin .. miserable.

Dad must have been a good salesman. The cousin never again caused any trouble.

Then there was the episode with me and Purdue. I'd breezed through High School on the honor roll, without any real study habits. When I went away to Purdue, I hit the inevitable reality and flunked out big time. When the "Letter To The Parents" hit the house, Dad suddenly cropped up at the dorm one evening and requested my presence in the car. There, he said he knew what had happened, that Mom was devastated, but they had decided that they would put the year behind us, I would go back home right then, and would enroll at Butler University that fall, where I could live at home and they could guarantee that I would do the studying necessary to prepare myself for a career.

True to his word, the topic never came up again, and was, I suppose, the first real encounter with the desperate need for, and the giving of, the forgiveness we all need as beings made in the image of God.

Dad was a man who did things the right way. I learned more from him than I can recall, but then I've heard that your education consists of what you remember after you forgot what you learned. I suppose that's true because those things make up who you are, and not just what you know. In that sense, what I am today (again, humanly speaking), I owe to my Father, from whom I learned so much, when I didn't even know I was learning.

One of the accomplishments in my life is, during their sunset years, Dad was proud of me. My career in Insurance was rather Horatio Alger-ish; I'd started as a Mailboy at an insurance company and ended up traveling all over the country managing a National Sales Force, conducting meetings and lecturing on insurance sales.

Then I started my own business and he was really pleased to see the measure of success God sent my way.

One of the things which brings great satisfaction to me is that my own family's regularity in church attendance and activity, even on those Sundays when they were in town visiting with us, was instrumental in leading them back into church; eventually, when they moved to Birmingham (from Clearwater) to be close to family, they joined FBC Pelham. That served Mom quite well after Dad had died; her Sunday School class did all the things for which a good Sunday School class is usually noted.

That was in the early 1980's, and I still have the Sunday morning Bulletin announcing their joining of FBC Pelham!

I was the world's biggest Daddy's boy. I guess I still am, and there's no way I could let another Father's Day pass without doing something to explain why, in large measure, I'm as I am today.

Thanks, Dad. I'd have written more, but I think Blogger has a limit on the length of posts, and I'm sure I could easily exceed it.

You certainly left me with enough to do that.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Maybe Our Best Performance of the Trip

In 1997, a group from Living Word Church, and First Baptist Church .. both of Pelham, Alabama .. went to Russia and Latvia on a mission trip. When in Bauska, we toured the Palace Rundale, located near there.

When we got to the second floor ballroom, there was a piano there. Someone said we ought to sing the song we'd learned in Russian, so after they played the beginning chord on the keys, we gathered and sang it.

Last week, I happened upon the VHS Tape I'd made, from the video that Pastor Truitt Murphy shot while on the trip. I watched it, and decided to put this up in order to, among other things, honor Pastor Truitt, who died a few years ago. Had it not been for his approaching Sam Neugent, our worship leader at the time, during a community Thanksgiving service in 1996, we'd never have made this trip.

SO .. thanks, Truitt.

The song is "I Love You, Lord..", and I don't think we ever did it any better than that.