Monday, April 16, 2012

The Last Time

As I write this, the time is approaching midnight which begins Monday, April 16th. But for now, it's still Sunday, April 15th, and I'm writing about today. Today was a special day at my church, St. Paul Lutheran Church in Hamel, Illinois. Our pastor, William Weedon, received a call about two months ago to be the Director of Worship for the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod and the Chaplain at the LCMS International Center. He accepted that call, and today was his last Sunday as our senior pastor. Unlike many of the members of our church, I am not one of the "natives."  I transferred my membership to St. Paul about five years ago.  Nevertheless, I am among the privileged who have heard the Word of God taught by someone who exudes pure joy each and every time he reminds us who we are:  People loved by God.

In our Bible study this morning I was thinking, "This is the last time we will gather to hear Pastor teach our Bible study." Is it proper to give a Pastor a standing ovation at the end of a Bible study? Proper or not, we did. He always packed 'em in. In today's study he talked about the rich man and Lazarus. His first question was "What do we know about the rich man?" Well, we know that he was in hell. We know that he was thirsty. We know that he still didn't "get it." We know that he still wanted to be served. None of those were the answer he was looking for; a common occurrence.  After finally realizing we weren't going to deliver the goods, Pastor exclaimed, "HE WAS ALONE!"  And then he said this:  "Unbelievers are damned alone.  Christians are saved together."

After the study it was up the stairs to the Divine Service.  I must confess, throughout the service, I kept returning to the thought, "That's the last time..."

That's the last time I'll hear him say "Please stand" after the ringing of the bell;
That's the last time I'll hear him say "...and in the stead and by the command of my Lord Jesus Christ, I forgive you all your sins...";
That's the last time I'll hear his homily as my pastor;
That's the last time he will bring the Sacrament to me as my pastor;
And finally this: "The Lord bless you and keep you. The Lord make His face shine upon you and be gracious unto you. The Lord lift up His countenance upon you and give you peace."


The last time?  No.  Thanks be to God there will never be a last time.  Nothing will separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus.  We are saved together.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

"A Litter of Puppies Aint So Bad"

Last weekend after having Easter dinner with my brother and his family, I extended my weekend travel another hour further south to my parents' home in Missouri. I had pre-arranged a vacation day for myself for Monday, because I knew the pace of Sunday would  So a relaxing evening down at the lake and sleeping in on a work day sounded like a nice remedy. Little did I know, my grandson and two of my great-nieces had additional plans for me. They wanted to spend the night at Great-Grandma's and Great-Grandpa's too. I'd say that's quite a testimony for my octogenarian folks, and it is ... but the urchins had ulterior motives. Yes, children do that. Not only do my parents have electrifying personalities, they also have seven puppies at their house; and everybody knows kids and puppies go together just like peas and carrots.  So who could say "no" to three children who couldn't wait to get their paws on those pups?

We arrived too late in the evening to get to see the six-week old babies who live in their home-made dog house (built by my father) out on the deck. Monday morning came soon enough, though, and I'm happy to report that I did get to sleep in as planned. Dad has a routine of taking mama dog across the spillway on his golf cart so she can run on the dam every morning. It's there they she takes care of her morning constitutional, and then they return to the house where she is awarded a treat. I explained to the kids that they would have to wait for their Great-Grandpa's permission before they could go out on the deck for their first visit with the puppies. Well, I might as well have been talking to a brick wall. They waited for about five minutes and couldn't stand it any longer. I can't say that I blame them. Those little rascals are so darned cute. After wading through a herd of seven happy puppies and lovin' on each one of them, my brother's youngest granddaughter came back into the kitchen to report that "a litter of puppies aint so bad."

The highlight of the day was when they all received their first vaccinations and were ready to be adopted. After making sure that her parents were on board, S received one for her upcoming birthday. My son had also reserved one of them to train for duck hunting, and my grandson was more than happy to take one of the bigger bruisers home with him. I learned yesterday that things are going well so far at my son's house. The puppy seems very content in his new home. There's no doubt he won't be starved for attention.

Before I sign off, I'm excited to report a new addition at my house too.  No, not a puppy. A horse. No, not a real horse; a decorative, primitive rocking horse. A $5 flea market find this afternoon.  Score!  Next blog post will be complete with before and after photos of it so you can be excited with me.

Happy trails!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

I Think I'm Done For Awhile

Nothing much to report with my life right now, but in case you haven't noticed yet, I have a hard time making up my mind.  Recently, I started gravitating back to a home decor style that must be in my  heart of hearts -- country, primitive, rustic, shabby, whatever you want to call it.  Maybe it was all that country living I did when I was a little girl. You know: "You can take the girl out of the country, but you can't take the country out of the girl." I've always missed living in the country since we moved off of the one-acre plot of land on my grandfather's farm. I was twelve years old then, and I remember on the night before we moved to the "big city" (it really wasn't big at all), I went off to sit in my empty bedroom where I had a good cry. These days, I would chalk part of that up to being a moody twelve year-old, but there's no getting around the fact that I knew I was going to miss the home where I had lived since I was a baby. And let's face it, being twelve is a difficult age for a girl.  Well enough about that.  The point is, here I am with another blog design. Good thing I haven't made it to the blog big leagues, or my followers' heads would be spinning from the various "looks" I've used here. I only have to apologize to a couple of you for the whiplash, and I hope you'll forgive me. I took photographs of some of the decorations I have around the house and made the blog title banner using "Paint" on my computer.  A couple of the photos are a little distorted, but oh well. I tried a different banner maker, but I found it too confusing. I also found a few cute fonts that I thought fit the bill, and here we are. So this is it for now -- unless, of course, I see a little tweaking that needs to be done. Thanks for checking in.