** The comment belowlabelled with ** was added March 13**
This will be a fairly short post of some “random” things. (Well maybe not so short now that I’ve finished it)
We just finished a fairly busy weekend – the first of 4 weekends of “preacher tryouts. We had a very nice young couple Kevin & Nancy Cleary here this weekend. They both grew up in the church in Southern Ontario (Hamilton/Port Dover) and Kevin is attending the East Tennessee School of Preaching.
Friday Paul & Michelle Hillier arrive from "out West" and they will be here for the next 2 weekends (and the week in between) – (the extended visit was planned largely because of the distance they were coming). Paul and Michelle are relatively new to our fellowship. He took the Sunset School of Preaching at their "international" program in Edmonton Alberta. He was recently the preacheratSt.Catherines but for a variety of reasons decided to leave that work last fall.
On April 1 we will have Jon Knutson – again a Southern Ontario native from a family with deep roots in our church heritage.
My last post was about the “anniversary” of my first post in March 2006. I had comments from 5 people who I have “met” as a result of getting into the blogging world, Click on their names (or their blog names) below to go to their excellent blogs. Each has a different style but I love them and their encouragement.
Neva (in Texas) I just “met” recently through a referral by someone else. She writes eloquently about the realities of the Christian journey. Her latest (March 10) post titled ”Facilitators of Forgiveness” is an authentic challenge to forgive as Jesus forgave. Neva – Keep dancing (because you can’t just walk) in the light of God’s love.
Tim Archer (Abilene Texas) I came into contact with through our mutual participation on the Berean list (and maybe because he was a visitor at other blogs that I frequent - I don’t really recall for sure) . One thing I do know is that the “half-baked” thoughts he cooks up in his “kitchen” are much better “tasting” (but at the same time often require some serious “chewing”) than most of my full blown ideas. His latest posting on March 4 asks “Have Christians forgotten that their first allegiance is to God?” . Tim, keep on “baking”- I like the “aroma”
Bobby Cohoon (North Carolina) is also on the Berean list and I often link to his postings from there. But I also think I may have initially visited with the “Little Sorrel” (Bobby- what’s up with this name?) through links on other sites. Bobby has an uncanny ability to move from common everyday things and events “Here in the Real World” into a very compelling spiritual lesson. See his latest post (March 12) (Duct Tape, Bailing Wire, Superglue and Nails) for an example. You’d probably never guess from the title that it is a lesson about Jesus on the cross. His previous one is drawn from North Carolina’s fame as a “racin’” center.
Dee O’Neil Andrews (Picayune, Mississippi) with her Wind Vane Chronicles has a special place in my circle of blog friends. I connected with her through John Dobb’s blog early on. She was displaced by Katrina (from Sliddell Louisiana). One of her adventures that I have been following over the past year is the building of her dream house with her husband Tom. She talks about that in her Letter to her readers posted to-day. What I like most about Dee is the way she openly shares her life and her faith. She shares her joys and her sorrows, her health challenges, her encounters of the “worst kind” with others and her graciousness –but most of all she shares her love for Jesus and her desire to follow him. She also hosts a very neat blog Grace Notes filled with great stories about people who extend grace (gifts of themselves) to others -mostly strangers. In many ways I feel like I’ve known Dee all my life – and we’ve never actually met except in “blogland”. I always come away from reading her posts challenged to be more like Christ and encouraged that there is indeed Hope even when things might seem hopeless. Dee keep those Wind vanes showing us direction – You are the best!!
The last one to comment was my friend Bobby Valentine. Of this group Bobby is the “baby” (in age only-nothing to do with his maturity or temperament). Based on his profile he is close in age to my oldest son (b. 1969) – and he was married in 1992 – same as my son. Bobby is a scholar and a prolific writer concentrating on the history of the Stone-Campbell restoration movement -as for example in to-days post which tells of an “union movement” in 1827 and the story of God in the Old Testament(or as he calls it the Hebrew Bible) – see for example his series on Deuteronomy in October 2006. Bobby started his “Stoned-Campbell” (never did quite figure out this handle Bobby!!) blog in April 2006 – a month after I started. I visited his site very early following a link from John Dobb’s “Hope Remains”. I have left numerous comments on his site (although not so much lately) and he has left several on mine. I know I’m missing lots of good stuff when I'm not able to visit everyday – but one thing about Bobby’s writing is that it isn’t (usually) light reading and so when I go there I like to have time to cogitate on what I am reading. From my files I know he visited my site as early as June. When I first started visiting him and getting to know him I found out he was in Milwaukee Wisconsin which is practically next door and that gave him “neighbor” status. He moved to Tucson at Christmas and I have kidded him about abandoning the North but he is such an interesting writer, I couldn’t hold that against him for long. I have read his book ”Kingdom Come” written with John Mark Hicks and found it interesting and helpful –both in terms of understanding some of my “restoration” heritage and in terms of a unique look at God’s kingdom here on earth. Bobby –what can I say – keep writing my friend and Shalom. And blessings to you and Pamela –the “pretty woman” in your life.
** Insert March 13 **
** I should have mentioned that in addition to these 5 who commented on the "Anniversary" post I have been encouraged by many other bloggers (mostly Christians with roots in the so-called RestorationMovement) and by my participationin the Berean Spirit list onYahoo groups. Most of my blog contacts I owe to John Dobbs ("Hope Remains") (see below) and his extensive list of blogs. I believe God lead us to Pascagoula last year and it has (as I've said) before been a life changing experience. The long-term impact of those changes remains to be seen but certainly my involvement in blogging is one of those changes.
** I also have received "off-blog" encouragement from other family and friends and I am grateful for that. One of the most active commenters by email has been my cousin Wilma and I have grown in my appreciation of her inquisitive mind and passion for Jesus (I hope thatothers who have sent me emails and talked to me personally aren't offended but it wouldbe impossible for me to make a complete list so I'm going to leave it at that - God bless each one who has read and commented - good or bad --I do this for myself but it is good to know that it touches others as well)
** end of insert.
Elsewhere, John Dobbs talks about his progress in the “battle of the bulge” (Congrats John – keep it going!!) but admits that he will be checking out his favorite “feeding troughs” while at the Tulsa Workshop – an annual event for him. I remember that he was away to Tulsa when we left Pascagoula last spring so we never really got a chance to say “Until we meet again” (Click on the link to see my March 24 2006 post for the story of our last day in Pascagoula) . However, maybe that was good because we seem to have maintained a strong “virtual” connection through blogs, email and our mutual participation on the Berean list. Since he was using the church bus to travel, he was generous enough to let us use his van for the last few days we were there.
Regrettably, I haven’t been following any ofmy favorite blogs to closely lately because I’ve been going in circles too much !!. (see post before last about wheels). Ever hear the “sickl” joke about the child who was going in circles and was crying about it so his mother says “Shut up kid or I’ll nail your other shoe to the floor as well).” Anyhow – we managed to close of (or almost close off) one of those wheel stories. We finalized a deal on a “new “vehicle on Friday which we will pick up on Wednesday. It is a used 2006 HHR (Chev) – Linda says its our “gangster car”—It is similar to the PT Cruiser and the body design is based on a 1948 Chev Panel truck
It can be towed 4 wheels on the ground behind our motorhome, the seat satisfied Linda’s comfort requirements –the color however is a little “out there” for us but we just couldn’t see shelling out another 2 grand to get the one that was the color we liked. I’ll leave you hanging until I can post a picture.
Well that’s it for now folks. Again with all that’s happening it may be a while before the next one but don’t give upon me.