Wednesday, October 31, 2012


I have such wonderful memories of Halloween.  Although I was raised in a very strict religious home, the gloves came off for Halloween.  All the rules changed.  Mom worried about evil all year long, but on Halloween, she just wanted to have fun.  It was so nice to have the pressure off and just be able to be a normal kid.

We would all dress up, put on scary music, and cook good things to eat.  She had a sign that had a witch on it that she would put on the door, the sign said, "Welcome kiddies, put all your goodies in the box below.  Go quietly and no one will get hurt."

I am so pleased as an adult, that our family has enjoyed this holiday together.  My children always had such fun roaming the neighborhood.  I have always enjoyed taking out the Hershey bars from their loot after they went to bed. Scott is in Denver, but the girls are coming over on Wednesday night and it will be a happy time.  I hope yours is as well.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

not a believer

I am meeting soon with someone who tells me that they are not a believer.  I think that they want to believe, they just have a lot of doubts. 

When you have doubts, just remember this.  You may not be able to see Him, you may not be able to feel Him, but He is always there.  You may be feeling dismal, but God is still there.  Every day, every moment, you are never alone.

When the eyes of my soul are open, I see Him in the fall colors, in the miracle of the human body, in the laughter of a friend.  Oh yes, God is here and He is always around you.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Monday, October 29, 2012


So, last night we had a lot of fun.  The girls came over and we carved pumpkins.  I hope that they last until Halloween, but we carved them none the same.  I have one normal daughter and one with an odd sense of humor.

They get their odd humor from their mother.  I carved one pumpkin.   One daughter carved a normal pumpkin, the other carved one that said, "don't eat it [the candy]- lol ...."  How strange is that.  Ornery she is.  Last year she made one that said, "watch out, we have bad candy!"

Family can be so much fun.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

self esteem

I have a cat that has low self esteem.  He is never happy unless he is sitting on your lap.  You can throw him off 30 times in a row and he just keeps coming back.  It's hard to understand- good looking cat, well fed, life long member of our family, why would he have self- esteem issues?

Then I look at so many of us.  Nice families, great lives, but low self esteem.  I cannot tell you the number of people that I talk to that are unhappy with themselves or feeling bad for some little reason.  Sometimes they don't even know why they feel badly.

Let us take comfort in the loving reach of our heavenly Father.  He is always there for us.  He never throws us out of the room.  In His arms are comfort and consolation.  He can sooth the painful days.

Peter wrote, "cast your cares upon Him, for he cares for you."  The psalmist wrote, "cast your cares upon Him, for he will sustain you."

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

college football

Today I am driving to Columbia for the MU game.  A friend called me last night and offered me a ticket.  How do you pass that up?  Whether you are an MU fan or a KU fan or a K-state fan, college games are awesome.

I hope that you are doing something enjoyable today. 

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Friday, October 26, 2012


Hmmm.  When you see people as souls, everything changes.  Remember what is really important.  They are just souls, on a journey.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

a little pain

Did you ever have a day that was just another day?  You just went through the motions.  Same old same old.  [we should not live this way, but we often do....]

Well there is a sure cure for the same old same old day.  Just add a little pain, and suddenly you know that you are alive.  A broken toe, a paper cut with lemon juice, an angry friend, or a disappointment is all it takes for you to become very present in your day.

Although we, by nature, do not like painful things, they do cause us to pay attention to life.  When we are in pain, the moments crawl by.  Days seem to stretch into weeks.  Maybe that is not a bad thing.  Sometimes I wish I could have more time in my life.  The days sure seem long when you are struggling.

So if you have something going on, rejoice!  God is with you and you are alive.  Smile, make friends with the painful thing and work to look past it to see the good.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

one foot

Some days hold little inspiration.  You don't feel particularly on.  You don't feel particularly spiritual.  Yet we awake in God's world, which is full of wonder.  So you get up and go.  Plus, your boss is expecting you.

One foot in front of the other, we enter the day.  We go about our tasks and hope that somewhere along the way we will feel it.  It.  That special joy of being alive.  You know, it is just around the corner.  I know it is right there if I can just see it.

And so we go into this day.  One step at a time.  Looking, waiting.  Hoping.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

acting and reacting

I have written about this before, but it is a constant issue for us humans.  In a given situation, am I going to react or act? 

Reacting is what we do when we respond to stimuli without thinking.  We just do what comes naturally.  Someone cuts us off in traffic and we retaliate.  Someone says something hurtful to us and we hurt them back.  That is reacting.  It's human, but it is rarely the best course.

Acting is different.  To understand that you can act instead of reacting is some very powerful news to humans that are able to learn this lesson.  You don't have to react to everything.  You have another choice.  Stop yourself, take a step back, take a deep breath.  Ask yourself who you are.  Ask yourself what you are about.  Say a prayer.  Breath in the Holy Spirit.  Consider your options and choose the healthiest course.  Then act.  Act out of the best of who you are.

Things always go better when we act instead of react.  I am sure that we will get another chance to do it right today.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Monday, October 22, 2012

the part you don't see

Be well aware that 90% of an iceberg is underwater.  It is also true that a good deal of most people is hidden beneath the surface.  Usually the part that you don't see is a person's fears, worries and hurts.

So, you see someone and you have a feeling about what they are like and how they are doing.  Please remember that there is a man, or a woman, behind the curtain.  Behind what you see, is the unseen.  Understand that they need even more grace than you had thought.  Especially people that are not very nice, it could just be that they are dealing with very painful things that you cannot see and they will not tell you about.

You will probably run into just such a person today.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

what are you thankful for?

During the month of November, I would like to post/share things that you are thankful for.  So, please take a few moments and post a comment or send me an email with a list of things, or a story of what you are thankful for.  It can be short or long, it just must be from your heart.

The practice of gratitude, the exercise of giving thanks is likely the one central key to learning to live a happy life.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

the good things

Yesterday I wrote about the hard things about ministry.  Here are some of the good things about being a pastor.

You get a chance to love people.  To forgive them.  To welcome them.  To help them along the way.  You get to baptise children.  For that matter, any baptism is great.  It is a joyful reminder of God's promise with us.  Whether sprinkled, poured or dunked, baptisms are great.

You get to serve communion.  To offer someone the body and blood of Christ is an awesome thing.

You get to help people in their time of need.  I have seen marriages come back from the brink.  Families survive tragic illness.  Young people transition times of fear.  Hope restored.  Faith secured.

You get to hold the hands of people in their most painful moments and remind them of God's love and presence.  You get to try to teach people about spirituality.  You get to share your own journey of change and perspective.  You get to be a part of the great high church days- Ash Wednesday, Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas.

You get to tell the story of grace.  Of God's amazing love. 

You get to forgive people who misbehave.  You get to model forgiveness.  You get to release people from their worries and fears.  You get to preach.  What a great opportunity to try to help folks take the next step along the way.

You get to preside over weddings, which are usually wonderful.  You get to preside over funerals.  It is a joy when you get to celebrate a life well lived.

You get to hug people and smile with them and love them.  It is a wonderful calling, a wonderful job, a wonderful life.  I am the most fortunate pastor that I know.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Friday, October 19, 2012

the hard things

Someone asked about the hardest things about being a pastor.  Here are some of them.

Burying someone that you love.
Absorbing the grief of those who hurt.
Listening to someone tell you that they are terminal.

Saying "no" to people who want things.
Not doing someone's wedding or funeral.
Managing budgets in a bad economy.
Not having enough funds to do everything that you want.
Telling someone why they aren't getting a raise.
Dealing with unhappy members.
Dealing with unhappy staff people.

Knowing that everyone expects you to be "on" every Sunday.
Disappointing people.
Not knowing all of your members.
Not being able to be apart of every program.
Dealing with folks that only want to talk to Jeff.

Listening to someone tell you that they are moving to another church.
Watching people disappear from church and never tell you goodbye.
Hearing complaints about various things.
Encouraging folks that can't seem to see the good.
Keeping your chin up day after day.

Someone asked, so there you go.  And so, the challenge for every day is to see the good.

It is a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Thursday, October 18, 2012


With my recent knee problem, I have become very aware of the difficulty some face on a daily basis going up and down stairs.  My knee will get better- others struggle every day with stairs.

With that said, I have a friend that is in need of a stair chair lift thing.  If you know of one for sale, please let me know.

Spend some time today being thankful for health.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


It's gonna be getting real quiet around here.  Alli moved out a year and a half ago.  Scott left a year ago.  Jenny is moving out this weekend, into an apartment near Town Center.  That makes us officially empty nesters.

Last night while she was upstairs packing, I'm sure she was singing and feeling very excited.  I was down stairs fighting off that melancholy feeling.  I put on a western.  I love westerns.  Sometimes a good way to move yourself past your feelings is to find a good diversion.

Change is inevitable.  At least she isn't moving far away.  Sometimes it is easy to see the good.  Sometimes, we have to work at it, even if it means acclimating to things that make us feel funny.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

a tribute

I participated in a memorial service on Friday night for Bill Apel.  A great man.  Almost his entire family got up to speak.  They said such wonderful things about him.  It is my belief that it doesn't matter what you tell others about yourself, it is the testimony of those closest to you that will give an accurate picture of who you really are.

At the entrance to the chapel last night, there was a big picture of the family.  Mom and Dad, grown kids, grand kids.  The caption of the picture said this:

"A man's most lasting influence on this world is seen in the faces of his family.  The light in their eyes when they talk about him, in the love that they will hold onto forever.  Here's to a good man.  to the life he lived, the hearts he touched, the legacy he leaves behind."

May we all live in such a way as to receive such a tribute from our family.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Monday, October 15, 2012

funny not so funny

Someone asked about a funny moment in my life.  This wasn't funny at the time, but I can laugh about it now.  Here goes.

The names have been changed to protect the innocent.  It's 1994 and I live in Princeton, but I know I am moving to Woods Chapel so I start studying the church directory to learn the names and faces of the people at the new church.  I work hard at this and get them imprinted pretty well in my brain.

Along comes the first big church wedding.  The entire congregation is present for Susan's second marriage.  In the church directory she was married to Robert, but the directory is several years old and now she is marrying Paul.  Do you see where this is going?

The music starts.  It is big and dramatic wedding music.  The bridesmaids all come in.  Here comes the bride.  The bridal party is all lined up across the front.  There is a prayer, the people are seated, and now comes the moment.  The new pastor is about to open his mouth.

"Friends, we are gathered together here today in the sight of God and the presence of these witnesses to join together Robert and Susan in holy matrimony."

The moment that I said this, the closest bridesmaid bent over and made a noise like she was sick to her stomach.  I stepped toward her and asked her if she was alright.  She said, "You said Robert!"

Oh my.  The embarrassment of that moment.  Everyone knew that I had just made a terrible mistake.  I wanted to shrink down to a tiny size and crawl out of the church.  But, since I couldn't do that,  I stepped out to the bride and I said, "I am so very very sorry."  Then I took a deep breath, looked across the entire audience and said, "let's start over again from the beginning." 

The wedding went on after that without a hitch.  Susan actually got married to Paul that day, and to this day, I write the names of the bride and groom in very big letters in several places in the program. 

May you be spared such moments of trauma in your life.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Sunday, October 14, 2012


I have a great family.  Great wife and kids.  Sometimes, though, they drive me crazy.  I am sure that sometimes your family drives you crazy too.

Well, when I start to get upset about some dumb little thing, I try to remember how good it is of them to put up with me.  If they were all gone, if they all moved to Moscow and I was all alone, who would put up with me?

When I think of things that they do that annoy me, I get annoyed.  When I think of annoying things that I do, I am really glad that they are around to love me and to put up with me.  Life is all about perspective.  Sometimes the difference between a good day, and a frustrating day is a choice of how you will look at things. 

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Saturday, October 13, 2012


I was on Vacation last week.  My dear wife and I spend 6 days in San Francisco, Napa and the redwoods.  I lived in the bay area for 8  years from the age of 12 to 20.   Part of my heart still lives there.  We watched the Blue Angels fly over San Francisco bay.  We saw the sights and smelled the smells of Northern California.  We are back now and glad to be home.  Thanks to everyone who covered for me at church.  Here are some of the sights that we saw and the things that we experienced.
Alexander Valley.  North of Sonoma.
Fisherman's Wharf 

The Blue Angels over SF bay 

Navy Destroyer coming under the Golden Gate Bridge.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Friday, October 12, 2012

losing one's self

We have always talked about losing one's self, As in denying one's self, mortifying the flesh, denying one's own pleasure.  Causing yourself pain over pleasure.  Hurting yourself for the common good.  Causing yourself pain instead of taking pleasure for yourself.

What if there is something else to the concept of denying yourself.  What if denying yourself is not about hurting yourself, but is really about coming to the realization that you are not the person that you thought you were.  Stop.  Think. What ever you think that you are, you are not.  You must now release yourself of the ideas that you have had about your self.  Leave your imaginations of what makes you good or bad.  You are not the dancer in life, you are being danced by God.

What if everything that you are is no longer defined by your mind, but is defined by God.  You no longer have control over who you think you are.  God alone speaks to you and tells you who you are.  Wow.  Does that change your, my self image?

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

anything that I want

If I could spend one day doing anything that I wanted, I would wear blue jeans and tennis shoes.  I would be off work and no emergencies would arise.  I would get up at 5:30am and feel great.  I would spend the morning doing things that I love.  I would plant flowers, mow the grass, vacuum the car, ride the motorcycle, paint the house, build a shelf, and get the mail.  I would catch up and complete every project that is open around the house.  I would eat watermelon for breakfast, a tuna sandwich for lunch.  I would be by myself all day because everyone else would be at work.  My kids would come over for dinner and we would grill chicken and peppers and onions.  Mmmmmm.

I might read a book in the afternoon.  Some friends might stop by for a bit and visit.  I would be friendly and say hello to everyone that I met during the day.  I might help a kid in the neighborhood with their bike after school.  I would certainly take a nap at 4pm.  After dinner we would play a game- maybe the "game of things."  It would be 70 degrees all day.  I would fall into bed at 10pm with a feeling that it was a great day, that sense that it is great to be alive. 

Someone asked what I would do on a day if I could do anything that I wanted.  Now you know.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

characteristics of friends

Someone who reads this blog asked me to write about friendship.  Their request opened my mind to many things to write about.  I would like to know who you are that made this request.  Please send me an email at if you are willing to identify yourself.

What kind of people do I seem to be attracted to as friends?  All of my close friends are Christians.  But I have many people that I am friends with that are not Christians.   I have friends of both political parties.  Some of them talk politics with me, some of them don’t.  I like learning from others why they think the way that they do.  My friends tend to have very good senses of humor.  They are honest and fair.  They treat others with respect.  They don’t mind telling me if they think I have made a mistake.  In fact, I consider this type of honesty to be mandatory in a friendship.  They are trustworthy.  I can tell them anything, and they tell me about their hurts and joys as well.  One characteristic that I love in people, whether they are my friends or not, is that they are generous and they are engaged in living a generous life.  I don’t like spending time with negative people, so my friends are pretty positive.  They also know how to dish out the grief.  They have to be able to give me a hard time, and they have to be able to take it.  My friends love their wives and children.  My friends love my wife and my children.  I guess I would sum it up by saying that the people that I am friends with have a deep sense of goodness about them. 

I have won the friend lottery.

It’s a beautiful day in God’s world, be sure to see the good.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

rock in the house

Sunday, as we walked into the 10:10 Sanctuary Service, we watched as Adam started in on a tune from the late Stevie Ray Vaughn. Wow, SRV at a church service! I was not so much surprised as I was filled and moved. A while back Kevin K. let his hair down by singing a little Supertramp and a year or so ago U2 was played to close out a service...So what does this mean? Maybe not much to you, but for me at least, it was great to hear music that stirs the (my) soul... I admit I am more of a secular music fan than a Christian one. Something about the stories hidden inside some of the that music really moves me. The stories of the broken person, the artist, who found something to grab hold of or someone perhaps, who was able to help pull them out of the muck and mire....I like stories like that... they are everywhere. I guess it is that message of hope that is there for all who are lost....

Lion's Den Man

Monday, October 8, 2012

enjoy today

do you ever take time to think back to a time in the past, maybe it was a year ago or a few months or just weeks or days and there was this "thing" that was consuming you at that time. maybe it was important maybe it was trivial, but now it has passed. during the time this "thing" really had a hold of were distracted from enjoying life. maybe you lost sleep. maybe you were on edge because of it and that bled over into your relationships. and now, today, the thing has past and maybe since then a new "thing" has replaced it maybe even several new "things" have come and gone. they come and go as do the days that are now gone and the time has passed and you will never get the chance at those days again. kind of sad when you think about it. our time is short and yet we let "things" steal away our time and our ability to be fully present in the here and now.

"Worrying does not take away tomorrow's troubles. It takes away today's peace."

Lion's Den Man

Sunday, October 7, 2012

freeing people to live

So, someone thinks you are mad at them.  Maybe they think you won’t forgive them.  If they are a people pleaser, it really wears on them.  Every time they think of you [or me if I am the person]  their hearts are heavy.

I have been thinking about this.  I do not want them to have a heavy heart.  I don’t want them to hurt when they think of me.  Think of the power that you have to release them.  Maybe your kid has disappointed you.  Maybe someone hurt you.  Do we really want to live the rest of our lives with bitterness towards them?  Do we really want them to feel badly when they think of us?

Release them.  “I hereby forgive every person for everything and anything that they have ever done to hurt me.”  Now, there you go.  Not a single one of you should feel sad when you think of me, cause I just love you.  God bless you, I just  love you.  The air is clear.  It’s a new day.

It’s a beautiful day in God’s world, be sure to see the good.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

I have your back

Someone apologized to me the other day because they were involved in a legal action against someone who had not paid them in their business.  No need to apologize.

First of all, I understand that sometimes legal action must be taken to get people to do the right thing.  That is why the court system is there.

Secondly, as a friend, I have your back.  All of you, I have your backs.  I am not going to judge you.  You may have faults, we all do.  I may, in the course of living life with you, find out about your faults.  And you will surely find out about mine.  I am not going to condone everything that everyone does, nor do I expect you to condone my faults.  However, I will accept you and love you and support you, warts and all.  I will never focus on the bad or uncomfortable things.  I will only focus on the good.  This is the gift of friendship.  This is the grace that God shows to us.  And if God can love us and support us warts and all, then we need to give the same to each other.

There is never a reason to apologize to me for being human.  Last time I checked, I was one too.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Friday, October 5, 2012

friendships continued

If you pinned me down, about my best friends today, I would surely leave someone out and  hurt their feelings.  So forgive me for that.

There are so many people that I love at our church.  Many of you I think of often, and fondly.  We may have never shared a hamburger, but I love you so much.  A great example of this is Phil Hart.  Man I love that guy. 

Another guy I dearly love is Lions Den Man.  He does not know this, but over the last two weeks I have thought of him every day.  Not sure why.  I need to call him.  He is the best.

Ok, friends.  P, D, M, H, J, S, C, J, R, LDM, K, S, T, DJ, B, T, H, J, R,M, B, L, A, F, M, G, T, D, A, W, B, D, and on and on I go.  You can see that I have won the friend lottery.  I am the most fortuante human being.  I am the most fortunate pastor.  I have canoed with these guys, played softball, bowled, rode on pontoon boats, listened to music, talked about life, ate pizza, laughed and cried.  Oh, the value of a friend is the most precious thing that a person can have.

I will also tell you that I am friends with my children, Alli, Jenny and Scott.  I love them so much.  Their friends come over and I love them as well.  I don't see them much but when the girls college friends come over, we always have such a great time. 

If you have a friend, count yourself as blessed.  If you have more than one, smile, because life is very very good for you.

It's a beautful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Friendships in Lees Summit

This is where I am going to get in trouble, because I am going to leave someone out.  Please don't be upset.  It is early in the morning and my brain is moving slowly.

There are two things that I have learned about friendship since I moved here in 1994.  First of all, I have learned that you can have more than one friend at a time.  In fact, I have won the friend lottery since I moved here.

The second thing that I have learned, painfully about friendship, is that sometimes they change and people move on.  Difficult as that is, it is something that I have had to make peace with.  I have lived here for 18 years and four months.  Almost three times longer than I have ever lived anywhere else in my life.  So I have had many friends here at Woods Chapel.

Where do  I begin?  It took me about a year to get over leaving Princeton and the loss of my friend Roger.  Finally I became great friends with S and J.  S is still in my life.  We bowl together on Monday nights.  I love him and he is awesome.  J I only see occasionally, but again, he is a great guy.  When all three of our jobs changed, we had less time to hang out. 

I then became great friends with B and another fellow.  I can't use even an initial for the other fellow, because he got mad at me and dumped me.  It crushed me.  B is still around and I see him occasionally, but not as much as we used to.  I still love him dearly.

I should mention the Armadillo softball team.  Every single one of those guys is my bonded brother for life.  I will never forget the parade of their faces at the funeral visitation for my father. 

Well, that is all for today.  More tomorrow.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

post college friendships

I am continuing to write on friendships.  My last year of college I had no friends, as Dallas Moore moved back to Bethel, Ohio.

After college I laid asphalt for two years.  During that time, my best friend was Bob Walls.  I also dated a couple of gals.  Then I went off to Seminary.  My best friend there was Vic Heister.  Again, what a fine man he was.  So talented.  He could build or fix anything.  He was from Bethel, Oklahoma.  Two friends from Bethel.  That is interesting.  I learned so much from him about construction.  We installed hot tubs and built decks.  I found him a year ago thanks to the internet, but we have not really kept up.  You know, people get busy and life goes on.

After seminary, I served my first churches in Cache and Indiahoma, Oklahoma.  You will have to mapquest those to see where they are at.  I did not really make any long time friendships there, although there were many people in the congregation I dearly loved.  Daryl and Syd Perry to name a few.

I moved back to Kansas City in 1986.  I rekindled my friendship then with Bob Walls.  I found Bob a few years ago.  When he got remarried I performed the service.  He had a brain tumor a few years ago.  It was removed and he is doing well.  He lives in Overland Park, but we don't really stay in touch very much.  That is bad on my part, because he is a great guy.  Odd, all of my friends have been really great guys.

Cathy and I moved to Lebanon, MO in 1989.  We lived there for two years.  My best friend there was Tim Marcum.  Isn't it odd that I have only had one friend at a time for all of these years?  Tim and I played golf together and took third place in a 3 on 3 basketball tournament.  He was in the Army and was a tremendous man. 

We moved to Princeton, MO in 1991.  I loved the people of the Princeton church.  My best friend there was Roger Grout.  He truly is one of the finest men I have ever known.  Our souls were knit together. It crushed me when we left him and moved to Lee's Summit.  I will never forget the day that I loaded up the last van load and pulled out of the driveway.  I sobbed for 30 miles from Princeton to Bethany.

That does not mean that I don't love it here in Lee's Summit, the tears were a testament to what a wonderful friend he was.  More tomorrow.

By the way, today is my Dad's birthday.  In some ways, my Dad was a great friend to me as well.  Although he once told me that he could not be my Dad and my friend at the same time, he was wrong.  I miss him a lot.  Happy Birthday Dad.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

best friend

Someone asked that I post about my best friend besides God and Cathy.  Here you go. 

Best Friend.  I hate to write about this because there are so many people that I dearly love.  Years ago, there was a couple that Cathy and I were close to.  I one referred to them as our best friends.  He startled me by saying that they don't have or don't identify best friends, because they have so many friends.  It hurt my feelings at the time, but now, years later, I totally understand.  So let me write for a few days about friendship.

When I was young I had very few friends.  I usually had one friend at a time.  When I was in grade school at South City View in the Center School District, my one friend was Greg Fisher.  He lives in Arizona now, and we do not keep up.  I do keep up with his mom.  We had lunch a few weeks ago.  His sisters and mom attend St. John's UMC at 6700 Ward Parkway.

When  I was in Jr High, I attended Bret Harte Jr High in San Jose, California.  My one and only friend was Mark Stanton.  Mark lives in Illinois now and I have not heard from him in years.  He is a great guy and very funny.  Mark, if you google yourself one day, I would love to hear from you.

When I was a senior in high school, I began dating.  I was pretty serious about that.  Mark moved away.  My best guy friend was Mark Flammer.  I have no idea where he is or what he is doing.  His dad was a teacher.  We played tennis and went out on his Hobie Cat Catamaran.  My best girl friend was Lisa M.  She was my first love.  We dated for 2 1/2 years.  It crushed me when she ended that.  I thought life was over.  But it wasn't.  I am sure that there is a lesson there.

My first year of college was at San Jose State.  My best friend was still Mark Flammer.  Then we moved back to Kansas City and I finished college in Springfield.  My best friend there was Dallas Moore.  He lives in Cincinnati.  I drove out to visit him in 1998.  He is such a fine man and such a great person.  So funny.  I have not talked to him for years.  If you know him, ask him to call me.  We played tennis, soccer, baseball, Foosball, and every other sport in the world together.  I was the right side linebacker, he was the left side linebacker.  I miss him.  I dearly loved him.  When he did not come back for our senior year, I was crushed.

Ok, that is all that we are going to do for today.  Make it a wonderful day.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Monday, October 1, 2012

what to do

Sometimes in life I have these moments that can only be summed up with the thought, "well what do you do with that?"  There are moments that leave me dumbfounded.  I have seemed to run into something that just leaves you shaking your head.

The other night I had a dream.  Dreams are a funny collection of things.  Here is the dream:  Sunday morning church was full.  Lots of people.  The power went off so everyone left.  I couldn't get the folks to understand that we could still have church without electricity.  Now the strange part.  A woman called me and suggested that we start a ministry of doing laundry for people. She would be willing to buy two washers and dryers to get it going.  I liked the idea.  For the homeless, for the elderly, what a great ministry.  Then the kicker, the caveat, the followup.  She wanted her 15 year old son to be in charge of the ministry and to be paid to do the laundry.

I am not sure what to say to her.  Something about a conflict of interest.  Something about the concept of mission usually does not include payment.  Something about volunteering or giving.  I was dumbfounded.  I didn't know what to say. 

Fortunately for me, the alarm rang.  I was only a dream.  It was time to get up and deal with real life, which is only slightly more crazy sometimes than what I find in my dreams.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.