Sunday, November 30, 2008
I haven't seen the announcement, but it would appear we are going to be playing Missouri next week for the Big 12 Championship.
For some reason, Oklahoma dropped to number 4 behind AL, FL, & TX in the AP Top 25. What's up with that?
Did our defense even bother to show up?
Brent Mussberger did better last night, but he stilled showed a bias against the Sooners. Why can't ABC hire a non-partisan commentator? I blame the Democrats.
Now, we wait to see if we get to play in the conference championship. Now THERE'S a strange way of determination!
Boomer Sooner, Baby!
Saturday, November 29, 2008
Sally cooked the turkey this year. It was GOO-OOOOD!
Sally's mom made her famous "Parker House Rolls" - my favorite bread!
Thursday, November 27, 2008
- My family: Sally & the girls, my parents, my sister, my grandmother.
- My church: from the tiniest baby in the nursery to Mabel, the oldest member.
- My friends: Martin, Randy, Bill, Todd, Tim, Becky and too many others to name.
- My blog buddies: Steve, Kevin, Art, Quinn, Michael, Camey, Dorcas, Neil, Debbie, Terry, Les and others.
- My former colleagues whose names I cannot mention because of their security status in foreign lands.
But most of all, thank you for Jesus Who gave His life that I might live.
May God truly bless you who read my blog! Happy Thanksgiving!
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
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Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Won't you consider what you'll give to the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering to support International Missions?
(The boy in the boat (@ 0:25) with Rankin is his grandson, Zachary. My older daughter was in the same class with him in Thailand.)
Have you ever heard someone say, "It hurt so bad I thought I was going to die!"? Everyone has a different threshold for pain; that is obvious.
I have, for the past 20-25 years, judged my own wellness on a scale of 0-100% On any given day, I am at 100%. I don't use this scale for emotional or spiritual well-being; only for the physical elements. One a very few occasions, I have rated my physical condition (which includes pain, strength, etc) at 25%. Most common sicknesses get a 60-70%.
This past weekend, I encountered a new kind of pain that I had to judge down around the 35-40% range. To me, that's pretty bad.
The worst pain I have ever had is that of a kidney stone. That was definitely the 25% time! The first time I had them was when I was 21 years old. I ended up passing 10 stones and it took ten days to do it. For half of those days, I prayed, "God: heal me or kill me; I can't take any more of this!" My next door neighbor called me to "encourage" me. She said, "I've had 3 kids and 4 kidney stones. Given the amount of pain, I'd rather have a kid any day!". Thanks so much for your encouragement! In my life, I have now passed over 35 kidney stones. I know, I know: TMI.
Another bad pain was when I had malaria and Hepatitis A at the same time. I got Hep A from a meal in China and malaria from a short vacation to the Philippines. Their incubation time, unfortunately for me, happen to coincide. That was back in 1990.
Other severe pains have been when I fell on the ice and sprained my back or when, overseas, I ate something bad and it felt like you are trying to "digest broken glass". Giardia is bad, but the cure was worse.
This weekend, I ended up with stomach flu of some sort. No "bathroom troubles"; only a severe stomach cramp. I'm not one to complain about things, too much (I hope). But this weekend, my stomach REALLY hurt!
It started hurting last week sometime, but it felt like I had done too many setups or something (trust me; that wasn't the case). I had put up Christmas lights on the house and I thought perhaps that climbing up and down the ladder had made me sore. Sunday morning was bad, but it was a big Sunday at church and we had our Church Thanksgiving Dinner and I needed to be there. As the afternoon went on, however, the soreness got worse. As time for the evening service came, I thought to myself, "surely I can last an hour". But I was wrong.
At 15 minutes til time to start, I came to the realization that if I couldn't even stand up straight, there was no way that I could bring the evening message. Several around me perceived that something was wrong and everyone told me to go home, that they would take care of the evening service. Finally, I agreed and made the longest 100 yard walk of my life! About 2/3 of the way home, I didn't think I was going to make it. I hurt so bad that I had to hold on to the electric pole. That 100 yard walk to me about 10 minutes!
I found that I could sit in my recliner without too much pain, but anytime I moved, breathed deep, or coughed, the pain was incredible. Monday was spent in my recliner. I improved slightly as the day went on.
Today, I am at 85%. My stomach is sore and I am kind of weak. At least I don't have a headache and fever like yesterday!
I sure hope you don't get this stomach flu; it really hurts. But, then again, pain is relative.
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Friday, November 21, 2008
The Baptist Foundation of Oklahoma
Contact: For Immediate Release
Director of Communications
Fundraising Solicitation a Phone Scam
The Baptist Foundation of Oklahoma has learned that someone is calling individuals claiming to be the Baptist Foundation. The caller asks for monetary donations and requests credit card information.
“We would like to alert our Baptist constituents as well as the Oklahoma community in general to this phone scam,” said Taprina Milburn, Foundation director of communications. “The Foundation does not conduct telephone fundraising campaigns.”
John Rinehart, an investigator with The Oklahoma Attorney General’s Office said, “Fraudulent fundraising is on the rise—especially during the holidays. If you do receive one of these phone calls write down the number that appears on the caller ID—even if the number appears as the Foundation’s number (scammers have the ability to use organizations’ telephone numbers)—notify the Foundation, and report the incident to The Oklahoma Attorney General’s Office at 405.521.2029.
You may contact The Baptist Foundation of Oklahoma at 800.949.9988, 405.949.9500 or visit our website at www.bfok.org.
What a morning!
Thursday, November 20, 2008
What is it with guys and pony tails? Especially the old dudes. Do you know how ridiculous you look? Cut if off and send it to "Locks of Love"; we'll all be better off for it!
Today, on the way home from Tulsa, there was a Jeep Wrangler come roaring up behind me. I had my cruise set on 65 and I was in the middle lane of the three lane highway. I was passing slower cars and faster cars were passing me. It was an arrangement that seemed to be working.
That is, until Mr. Jeep showed up!
He rode my tail for about 4 miles. There was plenty of room to pass me in the fast lane. Finally, the three lanes went down to two and I was in the "slow" lane. He finally roared his engine and passed me, then zoomed right in front of me to get off at the next exit!
Hmmmm. As my mom would say, "God love 'em".
Remember back in the '70's when it was REGULAR or UNLEADED? Now it's regular unleaded, unleaded PLUS, or premium unleaded. Some places even have more of a choice than that!
I remember driving our family 1972 Ford LTD to Southern California in 1975. Our car took regular, but they were out. I remember there being quite a discussion whether or not we could put unleaded in our car. And my goodness! It was $.72! Why was gasoline so expensive? We thought that the White Bros. $.42 was outrageous in the dessert along I-40! (And it was!)
As I'm walking to the store, there is a very large, young black man walking ahead of me. No big deal. I just happen to look down and the crotch of his pants is right at his knees!
For pity sakes! Pull up your pants! Use a belt! You look ridiculous!
I don't get that one at all!
I received this picture by email yesterday with the following note:
Passed this house this morning on the way to work in Hollywood, FL. Hard to see are the life-size marlin over the garage door, and the large snowman in the fishing boat next to SUV in driveway. Somehow, this just doesn't cut it without pink flamingos, after all, this is Ft. Lauderdale!!!!
I can't imagine having a lawn that cluttered with Christmas junk.
Last year, I had all red lights on the roof, but only 4 strings of them. After Christmas, I found four boxes of green lights for 75% off, so, I spent the time to alternate between red and green to make our home a festive holiday place!
Since it gets dark so early, they were on when the girls got home last night from Muskogee. Audrey and Sally liked them; Emily was upset that I put them up without her. I told her that I had ONLY got the lights on the roof and next Saturday, we'd have plenty to do, putting up the lights around the windows and in the bushes. She was OK with that.
Once I get it all together, I'll take a picture and post it here for all to enjoy. I just hope we can have the status of "Christmas House" this year!
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
I'll be hanging Christmas lights on the roof today, as the weatherman says it's the last warm day of November.
That ought to do it!
You may now go back to whatever it was you were doing.
The announcement is over.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Monday, November 17, 2008
Presumably, it comes from Isaiah 40:31 "But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint."
My wife impressed me the other day with the idea that "to wait" could/should also meant "to serve". When we are waiting for God to answer/work we shouldn't be idle. We should be serving (waiting on) him!
The whole idea of servanthood is not popular in the church nowadays. We want to be waited on, not waiting on others. But Jesus said that if we want to be great in God's kingdom, we must learn to be the servant of all.
Let's not be idle while we wait! Let's wait while we wait!
Good observation, Sally!
Sunday, November 16, 2008
I know many of these folks. May God bless them as they serve in West Africa. May God bless you as you support them through the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering.
Click here to give directly to the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering or you could send a check to my church and we'll forward it on. (Make checks payable to Immanuel Southern Baptist Church) and send to:
Lottie Moon Offering
c/o Immanuel Southern Baptist Church
611 N. Gertrude Ave
Wagoner, OK 74467
All gifts are tax deductible.
Friday, November 14, 2008
Wal-Mart, K-Mart, Walgreens, and even Ace Hardware are all in "FULL CHRISTMAS RETAIL MODE", hoping for a halfway decent shopping season. I was in Bass Pro for lunch the other day at the BGCO Convention and they are all decked out, too.
Sally and I have bought the girls a FEW things for Christmas, but something seems out of whack this year. Maybe I just need to play my Dean Martin Christmas Album to get me in the mood.
I've been a bit disappointed that I can't find a particular decoration. I used to have some blow-mold outdoor Christmas candles with "NOEL" on them. You could ALWAYS find them at Wal-Mart or TG&Y. Wal-Mart has some Santas this year, but no candles. I found some at a second hand junk shop the other day, but they were really faded and the "flames" were cracked. We had some in Thailand, but I left them there, since we moved to Hong Kong and lived in a high-rise apartment house. I went through this same problem last year.
I've got a really great plan for my lights this year. Last year was all red and only went around the front half of the house. After Christmas last year, I found green lights on sale so bought enough to cover the other half of the house. I'll alternate red and green lights on each string then have a "Holly Jolly Christmas House" once again!
Thursday, November 13, 2008
The Church at Battle Creek was an interesting venue, to say the least. It was formerly an Outlet Mall of America, back in the early 80's. It then became Gracemont and finally TCABC. Not your typical Baptist Church. As you walk in, you are greeted by a huge waterfall that as you look at it closer, realize that it is the church's baptistery. Kind of cool, really. Then, there is a coffee shop and book store.
The exhibitors have set up in the aisles of the old mall. Some of the old mall is still recognizable from my visit to shop there 25 years ago. Quite frankly, that part was a very nice set up. There was LOTS of room!
The first part of the meeting was the Pastor's Conference. That was really great! There were three notable speakers: Dr. Bobby Kelly, OBU professor, Dr. Robert Smith, Beeson professor, and Dr. Frank Cox, pastor of N. Metro FBC, Lawrenceville, GA. There were three other speakers as well, who did a fine job. The Pastor's Conference was a great encouragement.
Monday evening, was the first business session. The music was provided by TCABC praise band. I'll be the first to admit it wasn't my cup of tea. They were given the freedom by conference organizers to "be themselves". That is what they did. Now, don't get me wrong, they were a great praise band. But, I am a 44 year old guy and I thought the music was too loud. I also didn't know ANY of the songs they sang. They did sing two "hymns", but when we actually sange them, the words were the same, but the tune was unfamiliar. I guess I'm just an old "fuddy duddy". Does a praise band really NEED a fog machine? It looked more like a show than a worship time. That's my observation, only.
The business sessions were all unremarkable, for the most part. There was one point where one person objected to the way a resolution was written, but did not offer an amendment. All other points passed without discussion. The only "tense" time (and it wasn't really tense) came for the election of the new president. They called for a hand vote. It was too close to call. Then they called for a counted hand vote. It was too close, so they called for a written ballot vote. Finally, Emerson Falls, pastor from Glorieta Baptist Church in OKC was elected. All other officers were elected by acclamation.
The reports from the various minitries was indeed encouraging. It is a good time to be an Oklahoma Baptist! The only negative aspect of the entire meeting was the report about baptisms for adults 18-30 is down 26% over the past several years. This was alarming and we all prayed for this situation. All of our agencies are in very good financial shape as we enter this period of economic uncertainty. Jerry Rankin reported, by video, that 609,000 baptisms were reported last year by IMB personnel and partners! PTL!! David Whitlock was presented as OBU's new president. His enthusiasm was contagious!
All in all, it was a very good "first" annual meeting for me. I enjoyed the fellowship. I enjoyed seeing old friends. I enjoyed meeting new friends. And I enjoyed meeting "blog" friends for the first time face to face. As an added bonus, I even got to meet KOTV-6 weatherman Alan Crone who was there to play drums in the FBC Tulsa praise band for Tuesday afternoon's session.
God bless Oklahoma Baptists!
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Well, today on Facebook, I found a "status update" that had something to do with this:
I went to the church where she worshiped in Penglai and saw where the original girl's school was located. On the grounds of the church is an outhouse. We unofficially dubbed it, "Lottie's Potty".
Since we are entering the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering time of year, I thought I'd show it to you:
(for my China savvy friends) It is fun to walk in the "footsteps" of the faithful.
Sunday, November 09, 2008
We can't make those kinds of mistakes the next two games.
Kudos to TT. I wasn't rooting for you, because I'm an Okie. But good game.
Friday, November 07, 2008
Audrey received the character award "Truthfulness" for the month of September. Emily received the character award "Obedience" for the month of October.
I am proud in the Lord for both of my girls!
Thursday, November 06, 2008
I decided to get up and make sure rain wasn't blowing in, as the winds were raging. Gusts were in the 40-50 mph range. I first checked the dining room window and, sure enough, rain was coming in. As I looked in my half-sleep mode, I noticed that rain was splashing in off of my gas grill. That was odd because it is normally on the back porch/stoop and it is a good distance from the dining room window.
As the morning light came and I was able to get out and look at it, I found that, not only had it been blown from the porch, but it appears to have some damage, too. All the guts were out of it, which shouldn't be a big deal. The left hand shelf was broken off at the screws. That isn't good. Also, the OU SOONERS grill cover was GONE. We later found it about 100 ft from the grill, around the corner of the house.
It obviously could have been worse. I know that. Someone about 75 miles away had their house completely destroyed by straight winds. I just found it interesting that it messed with my grill so bad.
This morning, the skies are clear. The wind has stopped for now. It is supposed to blow pretty hard again later. The temps are crisp. It was a nice 46 degrees when I left the house at 7:25.
I hope you have a good day!
Wednesday, November 05, 2008
Let's be clear about this. No man will save America. Our trust should be in God. If McCain would have won, I can't imagine anyone saying that he was the "savior of America". It is rather scary to me that people are calling Obama the "messiah" and Obama isn't denying it.
"For false Christs and false prophets will arise and will show great signs and wonders, so as to mislead, if possible, even the elect." Matthew 24:24Am I calling Obama the anti-Christ? No. I am saying to not follow anyone but Jesus.
We need to pray for Obama. Proverb 21:1 says, "The king's heart is like channels of water in the hand of the LORD; He turns it wherever He wishes. " Let us pray that God would use Obama for good in this nation. Pray that God would make Obama's heart completely His. Pray that God would heal our land. Pray that our nation would humble itself and call out to God, once again.
Nothing has changed from yesterday. God STILL sits on His throne!
Tuesday, November 04, 2008
The lepers found food and ate their fill. Then they carted off silver and other loot and hid it for later. Finally, their consciences got the better of them and they decided that since this was a "day of good news" they better not keep it to themselves. They went back and told the city that salvation could be found in the camp.
I likened this to the Christian's journey: salvation is found in Jesus; the new believer gets his fill of the new blessing (discipleship), then goes and tells others of the blessing (evangelism/missions).
Well, it seemed to go OK. I interspersed stories of our time in Africa in the sermon and tried to make it very personal. Before the meeting started (like a few months ago) I was told that I would have 2o minutes for the sermon. When I looked at the program yesterday afternoon, I found that I had actually been allowed 45.
The sanctuary of the church where the meeting was held didn't have a clock for me to go by. There was one on the pulpit, but the battery was dead. I forgot to take my watch off and lay it there (but we all know it doesn't mean anything when preachers do that!).
Well, I got confused on the time. I kept trying to snatch glimpses of my watch, but mixed up. As I finished, I was proud of myself for finishing 20 minutes early. As I walked away, I began to think about it some more and then realized instead of finishing 20 minutes early, I had actually gone over by 40 minutes!
A wave of humiliation/grief/lament/sorrow/embarassment swept over me. I had been afforded this incredible opportunity and had unabashedly abused it! My heart began to race and I started sweating from all the adrenylan in my system. I was losing my breath! My heart was pounding!
Finally, as I thought more about it, I decided to take another look at a program. Then I looked at my watch again.
I HADN'T gone over 40 minutes! I was only over by 8! And since we were a few minutes late anyway, no one thought a thing about it!
Another funny thing that happened during the sermon was that my phone began to ring. Now, I had it on vibrate, but everyone who knew me (I thought) knew I was going to be preaching at about this time. However, my good friend, Quinn, from South Carolina, wasn't aware of this particular addition to my schedule. He ended up leaving a voice message asking me who the quarterback for Texas Tech was, (as if I knew or cared!).
Sorry I didn't call you back, Quinn!
I did vote for one or two democrats today. (Not Obama) Most of the folks I happened to have voted for were Republican. I think if everyone in Oklahoma who were Republican at heart would actually register that way, we wouldn't have any Democrat candidates!
I am excited that all the political ads will be over tomorrow! Actually, I heard that they will start campaigning for 2012 by November 15.
One of the first things we did was stop at a grocery store and buy some picnic goodies. This was a spontaneous idea, otherwise we would have brought it all from home. We found a nice State Park on Lake Tenkiller. We were all alone and had a great time.
We all enjoyed skipping rocks on the lake.
Yes, there is a little bit of color in those trees!
Emily was the Uni-brow witch from the Far East
Audrey was the poor little hobo
Together they made quite the pair.
They didn't really want to go Trick-or-Treating this year. They wanted to stay home an pass out candy. However, they finally gave in and went to a few houses.
We didn't have many children this year; probably 30 all together...
Audrey carved the pumpkin all by herself this year.
Monday, November 03, 2008
"Gary" asked to speak with the person who is in charge of making charitable contributions. I informed him that we, as a church, do not make those types of donations, but would be happy to receive them from his organization.
"Gary" made the comment that he thinks that we probably already have too much money, but that is "another thing".
I immediately asked to speak to his supervisor. He said his supervisor was in a meeting. I asked to speak to his supervisor's supervisor. He said that's who he's meeting with.
I told him that I didn't care that they were in a meeting, I wanted to speak to the supervisor immediately. (I am surprised he didn't just hang up on me.)
The supervisor came on the line and told and asked how he could help me. I explained the situation and told him that the comment was inappropriate and and was unappreciated and was offensive. He went on to tell me that they were in a collection campaign for something or other. I interrupted and told him that I didn't care WHAT they were doing that the comment and call was inappropriate. He finally agreed. He said that they weren't supposed to call churches anyway. He said he would take our number off the list and speak with Gary. I asked him to take our home phone number off the list, as they had called us many times at home.
My goodness! What is this world coming to?
My friend, Steve, has taken drastic measures to control his son. He had a "special purpose" room built to contain the rambunctiousness of a nine month old. Here, the child is pictured imprisoned in this special room.
Click here to read the whole story.
Love ya, Bro! :-)
Sunday, November 02, 2008
Something I don't understand is why the gasoline was back up to $1.97!?!
I think there is a conspiracy in our town about gas price fixing anyway. I think this may prove it.