Yes, it has been a long while. Hopefully an opportunity will be taken into consideration. Welcome to 2015.
In Rudyard Kipling’s famous poem ‘If’ he states, ‘If you can meet with triumph and disaster and treat those two I posters just the same’. Jesus told his disciples, ‘Rejoice not that the spirits are subject unto you, but that your name is written in heaven’. From the wisdom of Solomon given by God we read, ‘A just man falls seven times, but rises up again’. When you have as we do six children, two daughters in law, and a grandson you know that in their lives and yours more than likely one or two may face the two impostors of which Kipling spoke in a given day or week. But Lord it seems like in the last couple weeks and next couple weeks nearly everyone of them and we ourselves has, is, or will be meeting them. It may not be them or Lois and I in particular, but someone near and close to our heart and life. God grant each both the wisdom and endurance to face these challenges, not be overwhelmed, and for Lois and I as we bear or rejoice in those we face along with those each of our children, their wives, and our grandson face.
We have been gone in the business of life, but this post is to signify that this blog has not been forgotten. Since my last post as the summer of 2011 was drawing to a close so much has taken place. I can only summarize the highlights with times of celebration, times of change, and times of sadness, all part of this big family who were once altogether in this small house. Andrea and Cherith did leave for seven weeks to work with Harvest Teen Rally out of Indiana. A few short weeks after they left Ricky and Karlyn moved to Baltimore to begin serving the Lord in ministry at Arlington Baptist Church. Ricky had to close down his electrical business and make that work transition. Karlyn had to make the transition especially from having close friends to unknown friends. A few weeks then after that Lois, Eunice, and I left for Michigan to go to the Allegan County Fair, my first time in 28 years. On the way there we had the privilege to stop and help in the first Harvest Teen Rally of the fall. Then on to Michigan we went for Lois and I to serve in the Child Evangelism Fellowship booth at the fair. We made time to visit Aunt Rose a couple of times as well as be with my family. It was our last time to see Aunt Rose alive. Andrea and Cherith finished their time with Harvest Teen Rally at Bob Jones University Farmfest. Josh and Hannah had an unexpected opportunity to visit Cordoba, Argentina for ten days in October. Shortly after their return to the United States Josh graduated from ECPI in Website Development. At the same time in early November Lois completed her therapy after her rotor cuff surgery in June. Thanksgiving was celebrated twice with family since Josh and Hannah had previous commitment for Thanksgiving week. So we celebrated Josh’s graduation, Thanksgiving with Josh and Hannah and family, then Thanksgiving Day with Ricky and Karlyn in town. For Christmas many of the family went to Michigan with the Blaha family. Lois and I spent Christmas with Jesse as he was notified he would be leaving for marine boot camp early in January 2012. He did not have his car to be taken care of as it had been stolen from the side of the interstate where it had broken down in the late fall. Many of the family where home to go to our somewhat traditional New Years Day visit to Chimney Rock, NC. Jesse found out the Wednesday before he would be leaving for MCRD Parris Island January 2, 2012. Once our last child left to pursue his next step of his life the business of life did not change. Josh and Hannah left for their planned visit to Argentina this time visiting both Buenos Airies and again Cordoba. Shortly after their return Andrea left for St. Vincent for a five week mission trip. Next Cherith was able to begin working at the Calvary Baptist preschool. As our income tax return came in and Lois’ settlement for the accident in early 2011 also came in we were able to payoff our unsecured loans and other outstanding debts. We were also able to purchase a very nice automobile to replace the vans that had become unusable the end of 2011. We also had the blessing of replacing our heating and air conditioning unit that had been dead for almost four years. Much excitement grew in anticipation as the time for Jesse to graduate as a new United States Marine quickly came the end of March. Ricky and Karlyn came in the week before as did my sister Ruth and her husband Rick. Andrea flew in from St Vincent on Tuesday morning. My sister Karla and her husband Todd came Tuesday night. Lois, Eunice, Andrea, and I left for Parris Island early Wednesday morning. The others all came the next couple days for Jesse’s graduation on Friday morning. It was a great time of celebration. The next couple of weeks we enjoyed having Jesse around on liberty. Then we took Jesse and PFC Cobb to Camp Geiger at Camp Lejeune, NC. We are hoping now things will not be as busy, but I doubt they will. God has blessed. God is good. God is love.
Some of the first Sweet Gum leaves have fallen, an indication of more to come, much more. The Yellow Poplar (Yellow Wood, Tulip tree) has been dropping its leaves since the beginning of July. There is no surprise there.
So much has happened this summer. There was camping with Grace Bible Church families, Lois’ surgery and continued recovery, celebrating birthdays, Ricky and Karlyn being accepted and preparing to move to Baltimore, MD to minister to people out of Arlington Baptist Church, Lois and my 34th Wedding Anniversary which we celebrated with all our family with great friends Tim and Beverley Roberson and their daughter Kelly, and so much more. Jesse now owns his first automobile. Andrea and Cherith have left to work this summer/fall with Harvest Rally out of Indiana and are enjoying prep work to begin.
Also, Lois’ brother Bruce and his wife Deirdra and their son Zack moved to minister in Montana. We went to spend a Saturday with them the weekend before they moved.
It is fun to look behind, but there is so much ahead. Welcome Autumn!!!