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Inspiration and hope

WHATS IN THIS BLOG: • I spent a morning with Staci. • Staci heard the audible voice of God. • The memorial service. • The white feathers.

Staci was my step-daughter. I have known her for 30 years. She passed away last Sunday on April 1 – Easter Sunday — which was resurrection day.

I SPENT A MORNING WITH STACI before her fourth brain operation to remove cancerous tumors. A delightful time with a gracious lady. Drove her down to Bartlesville for a blood test. At Vintage restaurant we shared lunch. Three of her close high-school friends dropped by after lunch: Lisa, Robin, and Jaci, and I watched the four girls bubble and sparkle in their conversation. Their love for each other spilled over onto me.… More

WHATS IN THIS BLOG: • The reverend Billy Graham died this week • I spent an afternoon with Billy Graham’s sister • The canvas crusade that made Billy Graham • Relationship with Martin Luther King • What did Billy mean to be born again?

THE REVEREND BILLY GRAHAM DIED THIS WEEK. When I was a kid in Australia, I heard Billy preach over my Dad’s radio, and I can remember him railing at communism, as well as inviting people to come forward to receive Jesus. Moved in some mysterious way, people would come forward hundreds at a time.

My Dad was born again when I was 6 years old (he was 33). I have a clear memory of him stumbling toward the back door, leaning heavily on a neighbor.… More

WHATS IN THIS BLOG: • Filling 450 Christmas gift packs. • Delivering them to a women’s prison.

This blog falls in the category of Inspiration and Hope. My other two blog categories are Science and Energy, and Health and Hiking.

DAY 1: WAS SPENT FILLING 450 BAGGIES WITH GIFTS FOR CHRISTMAS: Candies such as Reese’s Peanut Butter, tracts which share the gospel of Jesus, a New Testament, and a pair of white tennis socks. Woops I nearly forgot: Rice Crispies, and Oreo cookies, and a Bible study guide.

The organizer was Don Compton of Shalom Ministries, which has had a prison ministry for 45 years. Don began his ministry by witnessing to the hippies who lived in communes in the mountains around Santa Fe in early 1970s.… More

WHATS IN THIS BLOG:

You mean kids don’t have a bed to sleep in? A visionary program Beds-4-kids. How it all started. Excitement on their faces.

I VOLUNTEERED SOME HOURS THIS WEEKEND TO GIVE BEDS TO NEEDY KIDS. Some families may need food, yes, but there are welfare and church programs for this. Some kids may need doctors, but we have Medicaid. Some kids may need clothes, but we have Goodwill, etc. Some kids may need beds, but…… Wait– do you mean kids don’t have beds???

But when a church gets out of the pews, and gives time and money to provide beds for poor and needy kids in the community, that’s impressive.

HOW DID IT START? Steve Stucker is an ordained pastor at New Covenant Church in Albuquerque.… More

WHATS IN THIS BLOG: • Mind-bending labyrinth in the sand. • Crashing waves and captivating video. • The rugged south Oregon coastline. • Tsunami warnings…. An overdue mega-quake is coming.

Our rental house in Yachats, on the Oregon coastline, was only 20 yards from the Yachats River and 150 yards from the Pacific Ocean. The water was always moving – tides coming in and out of the river which supplied a thousand seagulls with minnows every day, and waves breaking on rocks and ledges with hidden tidal pools of crabs and anemones.

Like gazing at a fire, water movement is enchanting to me. From my training I find the physics of water flow fascinating. But more than that, my mood gets reflective as I recall other rivers and oceans I have seen.… More

WHATS IN THIS BLOG • Salmon spawning. • Marathon running. • Brazilian stew. • The Devils Churn.

WHEN I WROTE THIS, I WAS LISTENING TO THE POUNDING OF OCEAN WAVES ALONG THE OREGON COAST. As I looked toward the setting sun, large waves curled over and broke into agitated foam. Even closer than the waves is the Yachats river – I could throw a stone into the water from the deck where I sat. Sometimes the river flows gently into the sea, but at high tide the ocean submerges it and pushes it back in a flood.

Salmon swim in from the ocean to spawn in this river. I wouldn’t have believed this except that a local man was fishing across from my deck, and showed me some piccies.… More

WHATS IN THIS BLOG: • Video of the song Lean On Me (3 mins). • We all need hope. • Hope can come to us from other people. • We can do something tangible to help another person. • Hot new kind of jewelry

Just to clarify: each of my blogs centers on one of three categories: (1) Inspiration and Hope, or (2) Science and Energy, or (3) Health and Hiking. Probably too broad a spectrum, but I can’t decide how to narrow it down. Any suggestions? This particular blog is about hope.

An old song popped up the other day, and it’s one of my favorites….. Lean On Me by Bill Withers, whose group was called Soul Train (vintage 1970).… More

I ADMIT A VERY STRONG AFFECTION FOR MARY’S DOG CHANEL. This has come about in the past 6 months. It’s partly because I scratch her back, and give her treats, and take her for walks. When I come into the room, her tail wags furiously and she now enjoys being held, as in the picture.

Mary became jealous for a while, as it seemed that Chanel preferred to sit with me, which of course wasn’t acceptable. I realized I needed to learn how to understand dogs. When I get a leash out for a walk, tiny Chanel bounds down the corridor like a greyhound in a racetrack. In the middle of this she’ll often do a 360, little legs churning on the wood floor.… More

WHATS IN THIS BLOG: • Immobilizing back pain. • The Laser Spine experience. • The surgeon. • A nasty diagnosis. • Where is the finish line?

BACKGROUND. This is Part 3 of a long story about hopes built and crushed. This is a story of one woman’s faith and enduring persistence through a debilitating health crisis. In Part 1 (click here for link) Mary was immobilized by a new back injury received during a bad fall in her bathroom. She can’t drive, she can’t walk, and she can’t stand more than about 10 minutes without excruciating pain.

In Part 2 (click here for link) was described cement injection into Mary’s spine. After the slow-burning disappointment of this, she clung to God and explored his spiritual resources.… More

WHATS IN THIS BLOG ABOUT FORGIVENESS • What Jesus said about forgiveness. • Forgiveness is vertical but reconciliation is horizontal. • The danger of unforgiveness. • Examples of unforgiveable damage or hurt.

OLD-FASHIONED SPIRITUAL WORDS. It is said that old-fashioned words, from the Bible for example, are going out of fashion. Words such as sin, repentance, grace, or mercy don’t appear in our conversations much, and certainly not near as often as words like I-phone, apps, Facebook, likes, or Wifi.

THE WORD FORGIVENESS IS AN EXCEPTION, since the concept is brought up frequently in today’s conversations. When a couple split, for instance, they are told they must forgive the other person. If we make a huge mistake in life, we are urged to forgive ourselves to be able to move on.… More

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