Grasping Your Purpose

December 18, 2014

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SCRIPTURE

I’m not implying that I’ve already received “resurrection”{perfection}, or that I have already become complete and mature! No: I’m hurrying on, eager to overtake it, because King Jesus has overtaken me.

~Philippians 3:12, CT

QUOTE

We cannot do what God does but God will not do what we can.

~Oswald Chambers

my thoughts red

Paul uses the word ‘apprehend’ [AV] twice in this verse. It means to grasp or to take hold to. Paul said Christ took hold of me for a purpose {Telio’os} and I intend to take hold of the purpose for which He took hold of me. God did not call you to do everything but he did call you to do something: find out what it is and get busy. To grasp your purpose in life you need three things that Paul alludes to in this passage.

  1. YOU NEED A GOOD ATTITUDE–A Jay Cutler type attitude will not do the trick. You need a Tim Tebow type attitude.
  2. YOU NEED TO NARROW YOUR INTEREST–A jack of all trades is a master of none. You will never excel at anything as long as you are trying to do everything. A laser is concentrated light. It is light with a narrow focus. It is the narrow focus that gives the laser incredible power.
  3. YOU NEED TO INTENSIFY YOUR EFFORT–Paul was a sports fan and “press” is a sports word…He said, “I press on to possess that perfection for which Christ Jesus first possessed me”.… [v.12, NLT]….”press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.” Are you as intense about the LORD’s work as you once were? Why are you letting up? The clock is running out, it is time to pick up the pace. It’s time to go into a full court press.

Do you really want to know your purpose {Why Christ laid hold of you}? Begin with a good attitude, narrow your interest to pleasing only HIM and intensify your effort. Bro. Inman use to tell the story of the woman who kept coming to her pastor complaining that the LORD never used her. Finally he told her, “Lady, if you will get usable, God will wear you out.” I concur.

For those who heard this last night, I apologize but I did not see many there who read the blog and I was tired.

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  • Don’t know exactly how many we had last night but we were down. I had a good time but I always do. Next Wednesday night I will offer communion at 6:00 and on December 31, we do not meet. Many of the LCBS classes have parties on that night which is good. Our class is having ours on December 28 and we are meeting at Cracker Barrel. What a shock, right?
  • Today we pray for those having TRIALS. Russ and Katie were thrilled that Preston’s surgery went well and two hours later Katie Sparkman gave birth to triplets. DBC has four babies in the infant ICU at Huntsville Women and Children. I think that is 6 in the last 5 weeks and 7 or 8 in the last two months. Continue to pray for Kenny Holladay.
  • Remember the Sunday schedule is different: Deacons and wives at 8:55, LCBS at 9:00 and one worship celebration at 10:15. No pm services for the rest of the year which is two Sundays: unbelievable!

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Confidence

September 15, 2014

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SCRIPTURE

[Moses said to Joshua] Be strong and brave! You’re going to lead these people into the land the Eternal promised their ancestors He’d give them. You’ll give it to them, and they’ll give it to their descendants. And He will be leading you. He’ll be with you, and He’ll never fail you or abandon you. So don’t be afraid!

QUOTE

Confidence in the natural world is self-reliance, in the Kingdom of God, it is Christ-reliance.

~Oswald Chambers

my thoughts red

Confidence is a positive attitude toward the future and the assurance that whatever tomorrow brings; we, by the grace of God, will meet the challenge. It is a comfort to know that in spite of the condition of our fallen world, God is in complete control. As the song says, “I don’t worry about my future,  for I know what Jesus said and today He walks beside me,  for He knows what lies ahead.” We don’t know what tomorrow holds but we know who holds tomorrow. Personally, I am relying on His grace to give me what I need when I need it. I have no doubt that Christ is my peace, my courage and my hope.

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  • Another good LORD’s day to give thanks for: God is good.
  • The Deacons have been meeting for the past two weeks discussing [At my request] [1] The Reform movement in the SBC and how this will effect Mission and Evangelism and [2] Small Groups on Sunday night. I think we need at least one more week, perhaps two to word our recommendation to the church. Right now we are trying to get as much information as possible. We have given both items a lot of thought and some prayer: we need more prayer. May God help us to make the right decision.
  • I may have mentioned this already, can’t remember but we are planning to have Sunday Morning Communion on September 28. Joe David will preach next Sunday morning.
  • We do have some Sunday night activities coming up: October 12 will be a cook-out and a bean bag tournament and then between Thanksgiving and Christmas I want to do another Mass Visitation [over 1800 homes] on back to back Sunday nights. We will be delivering a Christmas gift, I just don’t know what it is at this time. Suggestions are appreciated.
  • Also have a MISSION OPPORTUNITY September 27, “Taking the Gospel To the Park.” We will be going to Birmingham. I don’t know the name of the part but it is beautiful.
  • What about those CHARGERS and Mr. Humble {Phillip the great}. I’m glad I don’t bet. No, I did not see the game, just the highlights.
  • Today is a traveling day for Joe David.
  • Today we pray for MINISTERS and MISSIONARIES.

Ghost Stories

September 9, 2014

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SCRIPTURE

He saw that the disciples were making little progress because they were rowing against a stiff wind. Before daylight He came near them, walking on the water, and would have passed by them. Some of them saw Him walking on the surface of the water, thought He was a ghost, and cried out. When they all saw Him, they were terrified.

~Mark 6:48-50, The VOICE

QUOTE

Faith is absolute trust in Christ–trust that could never imagine Jesus forsaking us.

~Oswald Chambers

my two cents worth.

Jesus dispatched His disciples by boat to the other side of the lake while He went to a mountain top to pray. The mountain overlooked the sea and the disciples were never out of Jesus sight nor mind. Before the disciples can reach the other side, they get caught in a turbulent storm. The disciples frantically fight the elements but seem to be making no progress. Just before daybreak, Jesus comes toward them walking on the water. They are terrified thinking He was a ghost. Jesus knew they were horrified so He called out, “Don’t be frightened, it is I.” When Jesus stepped into the boat, two amazing things happened: [1] The storm calmed and [2] the bank was very near.

All believers encounter storms even when we are being obedient to Christ. Storms can be frightening and they put our faith to the test. We must remember Jesus is always above the storm and in the storm. Some times it takes a while to see Him. Sometimes it gets frightening because we see the disturbed elements and we see the ghost but we don’t see Jesus. But in His time, Jesus will reveal Himself clearly and this will bring a calm and a peace to our soul. As a bonus, Jesus climbs in the boat with us. Jesus walks on the very waves that terrify us. All the elements we fear are under His feet.

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  • Miss Clara came home yesterday, PTL.
  • You need to call Mandy today if you are coming to supper and I need to call Michelle and make arrangements for the bus kids. Someone remind me! I forgot it yesterday.
  • I talked with an IMB board member yesterday. He did answer my questions but I am still in a quandary. I was not shocked: what I expected was true. I want to discuss it with the deacons Sunday before we make any decision about what to do next.
  • We ordered the bibles for the MORNING IN THE PARK event September 27. I am excited. I came up with a way today to make coffee in the van so we can set up a table and serve coffee, muffins, water, etc.
  • Today is our day to PRAY FOR TEACHERS.

Loving Jesus

August 20, 2014

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SCRIPTURE

Sir, if you are the one who carried Him away, then tell me where He is and I will retrieve Him.

~John 20:15, The VOICE

QUOTE

A person’s soul is in grave danger when their desire to know doctrine surpasses their desire to know Jesus. It is possible to know all about doctrine and not know Jesus.

~Oswald Chambers

my two cents worth.

At one time in His earthy ministry, Jesus was very popular but He knew well the reason for His high ratings. He was healing the sick, raising the dead, giving sight to the blind and feeding the masses by the thousands. On His last entry into Jerusalem, I have a feeling that only Jesus Himself understood how His mission would turn ugly. I think even His disciples still believed He would claim the throne. We have a tendency to love people who are in a position to do good things for us. Everyone loves a philanthropist. We all want to get in line, hoping to get our fair share. Jesus knew that the miracle-working aspect of His ministry was coming to a close. A lot of people turned their backs to HIM but Mary Magdalene was not among them. When she went to the tomb on Sunday morning, she was looking for a body. Her intentions were to anoint the lifeless body of Jesus. She was not coming to Him for a miracle or a free lunch. She was drawn to HIM by her love for HIM, not for HIS gifts but for HIMSELF. Mary loved Jesus even when He lay in a tomb.

Some people love church; some love to sing, preach, and teach. It is easy to fall in love with the spotlight. I don’t think this temptation is limited to preachers. When you are on the stage, there is a constant temptation to perform, to try to impress the audience and if we are not very careful, we will become performers instead of lovers of Jesus. Even the well intended become more devoted to “Their idea of what Jesus wants” than to Jesus Himself.

Personally, I am overwhelmed by my selfishness. It seems to be a never-ending struggle. Yesterday I read a verse in James that both convicted me and gave me hope…You may think that the situation is hopeless, but God gives us more grace when we turn away from our own interests. That’s why Scripture says, God opposes the proud, but He pours out grace on the humble. My comment is WOW, what an encouraging word. “God grant me the grace to turn away from my own interest.”

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  • I am trying to work us out a PRAYER CALENDAR…I have some of the pieces in place…Sunday would be our day to pray for preachers and church staff…Monday would be Missionaries…Tuesday would be Teachers…Wednesday would be widows, widowers, the elderly…Thursday would be the sick…Friday Youth and Students and Saturday Civic Leaders/the Country or better still REVIVAL. I am open for suggestions: matter of fact, the above is a suggestion. You may have a much better idea. I just know we need to get organized.
  • I have been forgetting important things and it upsets me but I do want to ask you to join me in lifting up Chanda Morgan who is having a procedure today, Daphne Hutto {Teddy’s daughter} Kenny Holladay who has treatments on Wednesday, Bill Wilbourn [Debbie Gilliland’s brother], my Aunt Angie Blackburn and Barney Sessums [old friend]. If you want to, pray that I will be faithful to remember these people in prayer.
  • I don’t know for sure if it is the LORD or just me being confused but I may need to fast from the internet and blog. It has become a passion and it very well could be that there is much more Jack than Jesus in it. If you don’t see one for a few days you will understand what’s going on. When Joe David mentioned fasting Sunday, the blog is the first thing that came to my mind. It has become a big part of my life; perhaps too big.

The LORD Is My Strength

August 1, 2014

 

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SCRIPTURE

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

~Psalm 73:26

QUOTE

There is only one Being who can completely satisfy to the absolute depth of the hurting human heart and that is the LORD Jesus Christ.

~Oswald Chambers

my two cents worth.

God is infinitely perfect and immutable, He does not change. He is perfect in all His ways and attributes. Therefore, He is perfect in His faithfulness and love. When all else fails, God can be trusted. Jesus trusted no man because He understood our human nature and knew we have a propensity to fail. Jesus was neither shocked nor angry when Peter denied Him. He knew Peter would fail but loved him anyway. Jesus never put His confidence in people but that didn’t make Him cynical or judgmental; He always relied on His Father in heaven. Some times we are demanding of others,  expecting more than they can produce. If your trust is in humans, any human, you will ultimately be disappointed. There is only one person who you can trust completely and that is Jesus. It is fine to love people but don’t idolize them; you’re setting yourself up for disappointment if you do. Men fail but Jesus never fails. I think someone wrote a song saying this very thing. The chorus goes like this…

Jesus never fails. Jesus never fails.
You might as well get thee behind me, Satan
You cannot prevail, because Jesus never fails.
 

grace barn

a Clara

a cooking team

acting goofy

Kerri and Allen

a joe-wheeler

a mass visitation

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  • GOLDEN GIRLS Saturday morning at Cracker Barrel in Hartselle at 9:00 a.m.
  • Really big week coming up…pray for the mass visitation on Wednesday night. We are getting the gifts and the bags lined up. If any of you are really gifted on maps, I could use your help. I would like to know exactly how many stops we are going to be making. Right now, I have 30 routes in mind but I think of new ones every day. Let’s pray for 30 teams and that is with 3-4 to a team. Families can do this: it’s trick or treat in reverse, you are giving them a gift.
  • Guatemala Team arrived safely but you knew that already: I’m not as fast as facebook.
  • Children come in today.
  • My proof reader retired early last night so I had no one to proof read. You probably saw a lot of mistakes but I have to switch gears and study for Sunday.

a sam on libs

porkypig

 

 

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SCRIPTURE

Out of your heart come evil thoughts, murder, unfaithfulness in marriage, vulgar deeds, stealing, telling lies, and insulting others.

~Matthew 15:19, CEV

QUOTE

Good people know about good and evil; bad people do not know about either.

~C.S. Lewis

my two cents worth.

 

Oswald Chambers said, “Either Jesus Christ is the supreme authority on the heart or He is not worth listening to.” Accepting our depravity is a blow to our ego. We do not like it when we are told that nothing good resides in our flesh. It offends us when the bible states our inherent evil and its potential to show out. Jesus confirmed what Jeremiah the prophet had stated, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” The fall corrupted all and to the bone, to the deepest part of our being. Religion tries to clean up the mess by working on the outside. Religion can reform us but it cannot transform us. God works from within. He begins at the deepest part of our being, our spirit. When we acknowledge our need for Christ, the Holy Spirit comes in and begins a sanctifying work deep within us. He is the antiseptic who fights sin and He begins the process of purifying us from within. Religion creates a fool’s paradise and deceives us into thinking we can purify ourselves by our virtuous works. There are two kinds of people; those who see their wretched wickedness and their desperate need for Christ and those who don’t.

jennifer sue_n

rick is ready

  • Children left for Shocco about noon yesterday. They will be returning on Friday and the College and Career Team will leave for Guatemala on Thursday.
  • We are working on our maps and our handouts for the mass visitation on AUGUST 6. We are going to need 30 teams and 3 on each team. Everyone can do it, there is nothing to it, the handouts will be in bags. If they are not home, you hang them on the door knob. They will contain info about Block Party, AWANA, and Church in general. Young people and children can help. Matter of fact, we will never get the 90 we need without them. Your immediate reward is a Chick-Fil-A supper. Our commitment service will be this Sunday so be praying.
  • PTL, we got ice machine working yesterday. It was making ice when we left. Sammy has given us a second machine so we should be good to go for the BLOCK PARTY.
  • Halls and part of sanctuary were flooded yesterday morning: one of the urinals stuck. Trustee’s you or I one are going to have to check them before we leave.

Bob’s Pics

Ireland, The Emerald Isle

Ireland, The Emerald Isle

 

Foghorn bad luck

Slothful Saints

July 11, 2014

celebrate Jesus

SCRIPTURE

Take a lesson from the ants, you lazybones. Learn from their ways and become wise.

~Proverbs 6:6, NLT

QUOTE

The real danger of spiritual laziness is that we don’t want to be stirred up; we want to stay in our comfort zone.

~Chambers/Yaakov

my thoughts red

Have you ever seen a lazy ant? Ants have a reputation for being active: they are workers. The average ant can carry six times its own weight. This would be like me carrying 1200 pounds on my back. Ants are incredible creatures; they are hard and strong workers. The temptation for every believer is to become lazy. We make comfort our primary goal. We avoid all the rough roads and our primary objective is secure a peaceful place and retreat from the front line. We use prayer and bible study as an excuse for retreating from our obligation, calling and privilege to share Christ with the world. We have all eternity to worship but we have only a brief window called time in which to share Christ with our lost friends.

Are you in a spiritual rut? Do you need stirring up? Are you engaged in what matters most or trivial pursuits? The war is on, battles are being fought everyday. Come out of your hiding place and put on your armor and get into the battle. Don’t be like the Israelites under Saul who hid in caves and holes to keep from fighting.  Amen or O’me!

 

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  • This Sunday, July 13 we seek God’s will for the BLOCK PARTY. We need an offering of $2,000 or better to go forward.
  • Youth leave for camp Monday July 14.
  • FRONT PEW shower July 20 for Children’s Friday Backpack Program…these items will go to DMS and the Elementary. Unrefrigerated snacks and underwear [new]: don’t buy for a child more than 12 years old. 
  • Sunday July 27 will be CHILDREN’S MULTI-VITAMIN DAY….our goal is 100 bottles. These will be going to Guatemala in August.
  • Speaking of Guatemala: Teco Vargas will be with us Sunday Night at 6:00.

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The Chamber’s Test

July 10, 2014

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SCRIPTURE

Joshua said to the people, “You cannot serve the LORD…”

~Joshua 24:19

QUOTE

You cannot live a holy life but you can decide to let Jesus Christ make you holy.

~Oswald Chambers

my thoughts red

I am reading through MY UTMOST FOR HIS HIGHEST for the third or fourth time and yesterday’s devotion really struck a spiritual nerve. For whatever it is worth, I do agree with Chambers, “You cannot live a holy life.” Holiness is not the way to Christ–Christ is the way to holiness. Are you trusting His grace to make you holy or your goodness? Take this test:

  1. Do you have the slightest reliance on anything or anyone other than Christ?
  2. Are you relying on your gifts and abilities?
  3. Are you relying on circumstances?
  4. Are you relying on yourself, even in the slightest degree?
  5. Is your relationship with Christ sufficient for you to expect Him to work through you?
  6. Are you waiting to feel worthy before you commit yourself to Christ’s service?
  7. Are you waiting for perfect faith to make yourself available for Christ’s service?
  8. Are you willing to take risk for His sake?
  9. Are you willing to let Christ be to you, all that He said He would be?
  10. Are you willing to undergo suffering and humiliation if that is what it takes?

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  • Great service last night {July 9}. We are blessed and I had a wonderful time. I love the GATHERING!
  • Vote on Block Party this Sunday. Our goal for the offering is $2,000. Pray for God’s will to be done. If anyone wants to meet with me for prayer about this project, give me a call and I will meet you somewhere. The more we pray, the better I will feel.
  • FRONT PEW shower July 20 Children’s Friday Backpack Program…these items will go to DMS and the Elementary. Unrefrigerated stacks and underwear [new]: don’t buy for a child more than 12 years old. 
  • Sunday July 27 will be CHILDREN’S MULTI-VITAMIN DAY….our goal is 100 bottles. These will be going to Guatemala in August.
  • Speaking of Guatemala: Teco Vargas will be with us Sunday Night at 6:00.

shut up son I'm Talking

 

porkypig

God Is God!

July 4, 2014

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This blog is dedicated to a couple of my best friends: John Wydner and Kenny Holliday.

SCRIPTURE

“Why do you call me good?” Jesus asked him. “Only God is truly good.”

~Luke 18:19, NLT

QUOTE

God does not want our goodness. Our goodness is putrid to Him.  But He is willing to give us HIS goodness in exchange for our badness. 

~Yaakov {adapted from Oswald Chambers}

my thoughts red

The Rich Young Ruler believed one could get into heaven by being good. Whereas it sounds good, it is a very bad theology. Our goodness is not good enough to measure up to God’s standard which is perfection and we are not perfect.  Even the good that we do is vainly motivated which makes our goodness bad. Jesus did some things for us that we could never do for ourselves: {1} He lived a perfect life, {2} Died an atoning death and {3} Rose from the dead.

It is true that only God is good and it is also true that Jesus is God. Our hope is built on nothing less than Jesus blood and righteousness.

A REAL EXTRA

The following is a letter to the editor submitted by Reis R. Kash and published in the Register-Guard of Eugene, Oregon on March 19, 2014. It certainly primes the pump as to comments regarding the quality or lack of political leadership in this country. I have done no editing so get our your dictionary and enjoy.

Those who compare the bare-chested conqueror of the Crimea with the metro-sexual ruler of the United States and find our emperor weak to the point of deserving ridicule miss the essential strength of Obama. It’s no ordinary weakling who can turn a once-respected Republic into an international joke; reduce congress to a gaggle of sniveling sycophants; turn the world’s finest medical system into a failed third-rate socialist nightmare with a stroke of the pen; shatter our constitution without attempted recourse by the sons and daughters of frontiersmen and pioneers whose blood was used to write the inspired document; and turn the people our once-united states into a herd of competing minorities who, like suckling pigs, are each afraid to lose his spot at the government trough.

So do not denigrate the nonentity ruler who has overcome his uncertain ancestry and ludicrous incompetence to do what no other king or dictator has been able to do in 237 year history. He has destroyed America.

Reis R. Kash, Springfield, Illonios

A sycophant is: a person who praises powerful people in order to get their approval.

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  • David Andrews father Jiles Otis Andrews age 65 of Elkmont, passed away on Thursday, July 03, 2014, at his residence. Mr. Andrews was born January 17, 1949, in Jasper, AL to Joe Bob Andrews and Zada Trull Andrews. Services for Mr. Andrews are Saturday, July 5, 2014, at Limestone Chapel Funeral Home at 3:00 p.m. Visitation will be Saturday, July 5, 2014, from 12:00 until 2:45 p.m. at the funeral home. Burial will be in Roselawn Cemetery with Larry Remington officiating.
  • To hear an astounding speech about the “Peaceful Muslims”, clink on this link or go to this web address…it is unbelievable. http://ozziesaffa.blogspot.com/2014/06/i-bet-she-regrets-asking-her-question.html

 

Bobby From L.A.

The United States Border Patrol is asking everyone to keep on the lookout for a red 1951 Chevy. They suspect this car is being used to smuggle illegal immigrants across the border from Mexico and into points along the U.S. border.

If you see the vehicle pictured below and have reason to believe that it is the suspect vehicle, you are urged to contact your local police department or the U. S. Border Patrol.

Red 51 Chevy

 

The Hour Of Power

June 28, 2014

celebrate Jesus

SCRIPTURE

“When I was with you daily in the temple, you did not try to seize Me. But this is your hour, and the power of darkness.”

~Luke 22:53, NKJV

QUOTE

The “So Called” innocent man or woman is never safe.

~Oswald Chambers

my thoughts red

When we fail to recognize the presence and power of indwelling sin, we set ourselves up for failure, miserable failure. Peter was so sure of himself but Jesus never trusted human nature. He was not cynical about our human nature but he was realistic. Jesus knew that Peter would stumble because he failed to recognize the presence and the power of indwelling sin and the influence of the world system, which is antichrist. When an adult pretends to be innocent and refuses to accept responsibility for their sin, they make themselves a target. There is nothing innocent about flirting with another man’s wife or husband. In my case it would be wife: I want this understood.

Would you consider a man/woman innocent who came home with a rattlesnake bit after handling a snake at one of the churches that do such things? You would think one of two things: [1] They fell out of a stupid tree and hit every branch on the way down. They did something dumb because they did not consider the risk or the consequences or[2] They are retarded mentally. They don’t have enough sense to know that a rattler is dangerous or in some cases deadly. They do not have enough sense to understand the nature of a snake.

Peter was not mentally challenged, he just did not think through. He relied on the flesh [human nature] and it betrayed him. All sin has consequences but according to Paul, no sin has greater consequences than sexual immorality.  Always read the fine print before you sign the contract. If you put another man or woman before your children [this person not being their mom or dad], you children will never forgive you: never, as in a life time.

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  • Two twelve hour days in a row and I am shot; as in tired and worn out. Things went well today. I do want to thank Shohn and all the ladies that brought food. I was shocked twice yesterday but I don’t have the ability or humility to tell you about it: perhaps someday.
  • John Wydner’s surgery went well and he was to come home as soon as he walked. Could have been last night [June 27] or today. Bill Wilborn’s  surgery went well but the healing process is not working the way they had hoped.
  • Ronnie Shipley mom had a knee replaced and she will be in the same nursing home as Wanda for a few days. Mrs. Shipley is a trooper, she is tougher than a pine knot.
  • Joe’s grand baby is a little doll. She gave me the once over today. I think she gets to come home in the next few days.

foghorn if you try to fail