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Showing posts from May, 2009

St Louis

We're here. We rolled in about 5:45 PM this evening and it's a great place. We almost took a later flight, but were too slow getting to the counter for the voucher! Ah well - we're here!
It's a lot more industrial than I remember. Given that was more than 10 yrs ago since I was here last, that should be surprising.
We didn't rent a car on this trip. Instead, we're relying completely on public transportation - the SUBWAY! I love subways! They take you through parts of the city you don't see in the travel brochures and give you a decent idea of what the city is really like. St. Louis is no exception. Some of our friends in Frankston will think we're crazy since all you see about subways is the murders and such but we've always used it when possible - it's the only way to go when you're not sure about the city.
Tomorrow, we'll visit the Gateway Arch, Busch Stadium and whatever else we can get into. Check our facebook accounts for p…

I wouldn't do this except. . .

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This shot might look like any other ordination going on and, in many ways, it is. The only difference between this one and others is what Donnie Maib (kneeling) does for a living. More on that in a moment.

For most of the time the Lord has allowed me to be in ministry, I've tried to reinforce to people that they can be ministers right where they are. They don't have to quit their "day job" to be active and useful in the ministry of the Lord. In fact, many times they can be MORE useful to the Lord by staying in their present job. The Lord doesn't always call you away from a "regular" job to be a minister. Sometimes (in fact most times!), He plans to use you right where you are.

That brings us back to Donnie Maib. Recently ordained at Promiseland West Church, he says this about his job: "God's given me a platform," Maib said. "I don't want to be offensive or preachy, but for those searching, I'm here to share my life'…

A lazy Friday

Today is my usual day off and a welcome one at that. I've been praying, reading and catching up on my TV shows. One story that seems to keep coming up wherever I turn is the homosexual agenda. The power they seem to exhibit is disturbing to me. Exhibit A - voters in California approve Proposition 8 barring gay "marriage" in their state. Immediately, there's a clamor to overturn a democratically approved piece of legislation. Lawsuits are filed and accusations of manipulation, racism, homophobism, etc. Today, I read that the California State Supreme Court (who ruled gay marriage was acceptable forcing the issue to the ballot box in the first place) will rule on Tuesday on the constitutionality of Proposition 8 (here's the link). Any guesses how they'll rule? *snarky smirk*

Let me be clear on this issue: I have friends that I regard as close friends who are gay. Furthermore, I have never (nor do I expect to) feared gays as individuals. Their demand, …

Date Night

For the first time in a long while, Julie and I got to have a full-fledged date day / night. We ended the night at Bernard's Meditteranean Restaurant in Tyler. We wouldn't have gone there had it not been for a friend who gave us a gift certificate to go there. Classy, dark, and expensive. A great combination for a date night! The food was good - I had rack of lamb (never had that before) and Julie had Veal with scampi. We washed it down with some Tuxedo cake - DARN good!
Before the meal, we went to a double feature. I let Julie choose them both. We went to see "17 Again" and "Ghosts of Girlfriends Past." Here's a note on each
"17 Again" - I was shocked - SHOCKED - at how moral the movie hero was. He encoraged compassion, morality and sexual abstinence. WOW! I wasn't expecting that. Good movie for a teen date or a general chick flick.
"Ghosts of Girlfriends Past" - Sort of a re-telling of Charles Dickens "Christmas…

MISSION GALVESTON 2009

"The God of Heaven will give us success. We will start rebuilding." Nehemiah 2:20

That's our theme verse for our trip to Galveston this summer. On September 13, 2008 Hurricane Ike struck our Texas coastline with destructive force and devastating winds. We're going to Galveston for the express purpose of rebuilding people's lives by helping rebuild their homes. It's awesome thing to be useful to the Lord like that.

Maybe you've never been on a mission trip before and you're wondering what it might be like. Here's a sneak preview of what a regular day might be like.

6:30 AM - Jim Smith and Phil Parks get up. As our foremen, these guys always lead the way.

7:00 AM - Breakfast - Prepared by our masterful chefs led by Kathy Lummus. (As a side note, let me just say I've been on a number of these trips. Only since I came here have I GAINED weight while on a mission trip - a credit to Kathy's cooking!).

7:30 AM - Out to job site. Depending o…

MISSION GALVESTON 2009

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By now you've probably heard we're going to Galveston this summer. In the last two days, I've spoken with them twice and let me say they're excited about us coming! There's really only one problem - they can't tell us what we'll be doing until about a week in advance.

"WHAT?" the planner in me says. "How can I ask people to sign on for a trip when I don't even know what I'm asking them to do?!" I've had that conversation with myself numerous times recently. I've even had that conversation with some of you who are planners too (you know who you are!). At the end of the day, I've come to this conclusion - as soon as the Hurricane went through Galveston, I felt sure the Lord was leading us go there instead of somewhere else. I'm confident, despite the lack of surety in our work, the Lord WILL use us there.

I can't help but think of Hebrews 11:8 - "By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would …

I'm not really sure what to say about this

A friend of mine sent me an email regarding another Darin Wood in this world (God help us all!). This one is a home builder who has constructed an. . . .interesting house. . . .that's a good description! Here's the link. I'm afraid to post a picture of it. Go see the story and you'll understand why.

A Scientist's Delight

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Our own Dan Blair came to me a few weeks ago requesting I inquire about bringing a gentleman here to do a talk on the Shroud of Turin (information about the Shroud can be found here). Being an fan of ancient Christianity, my curiosity was piqued. I called Dee German and have him scheduled to share his story with us on June 7th at 6 PM.

I gotta tell you, this is no chump who got his info from the internet. Dr. German was a part of a team of scientists in 1978 who performed tests on the Shroud. He taught Physics at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, CO. His expertise and insight are even more poignant given that he was a self-proclaimed agnostic when he was a part of the 1978 team but has since come to faith in Christ. I can assure you this evening will be well worth you time. Join us at 6 PM on Sunday night, June 7th.

Monday Morning Reflections

- First off, let me say how proud I am of us as a church! Our blood drive yielded 65 units! Wow! If all those who had desired to give had actually given, we'd have bumped 80 (we had several turned away for one reason or another)! Thanks to all of you who contributed to the blood drive either by giving blood or by contributing your time to help it go smoothly. We had a CROWD! Thanks.
- The final of our deacon series messages was well received. Please continue to lift those who need to serve in those roles. If you haven't already picked up a recommendation form, please find them on the crescent table in the foyer.
- Please continue to lift up the family of Shelley Burks-White. I've had time to spend with Judy and Johnny over yesterday and today and they're doing as well as can be expected. The single greatest comfort is that Shelley is no longer limited by the body that constrained her.
- This weekend is Memorial Day - one of the poorest attended Sundays of the…

About our blood drive. . . .

I've gotten this question a lot this week - "are we still having the blood drive?" The answer is YES! ABSOLUTELY! NO DOUBT ABOUT IT! I can think of no better way to honor Shelley's life and memory than with continuing the blood drive.

Just yesterday, Frankston High School committed their blood drive to Shelley's honor and gave a number of units. Palestine Westwood High School did the same. There's been at least two blood drives in Dallas and at least one in Houston. What a privilege it is to be a part of something so God honoring and so clear in it's premise. While Shelley has gone home, others still need the blood that we will give in her memory and in her honor.

I know some can't give for one reason or another - but if you can, come ready on Sunday morning to give blood - in honor of Shelley.

Shelley Burks-White Arrangements

In case you haven't heard, here's the schedule of services for Shelley.

Thursday
Shelley's funeral service will be at Wilshire Baptist Church (4316 Abrams Road, Dallas) at 3:30 PM.

Friday
A visitation for the family will be held here at FBC from 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM. We'll have doors open

Saturday
A graveside service will be held here in Frankston City Cemetery at 11 AM.

Please pray for Greg, Alyssa and Reed. Pray for Judy and Johnny Burks, her parents. Pray for Susan and Stephanie, her sisters. Pray for her church family at Wilshire Baptist in Dallas. Pray for grace and comfort for the services.

We're back

Thanks for praying for us over the last several days. We got back home last night around 10 PM. In case you're curious, it's a 953 miles round trip from here to Rogers, Arkansas.

The service went quite well. I think Grandpa would've been pleased. He requested one song and Julie sang it beautifully. My father-in-law, David, spoke briefly with a testimony about Grandpa. Bro. Gary Orr, our uncle and Grandpa's son-in-law, did the funeral message. All in all, we had five preachers take part in the service. No wonder it lasted an hour! :-)

Truthfully, it was more a celebration than any service I've been to in a long time. He lived an God-honoring life, leaving a legacy of faithfulness and passion for Christ that we hope we can emulate. Today, we know he's home. Thanks for sharing him with us, Lord - our lives are forever changed as a result.

Shelley White - Home at last

By now, you've probably heard Shelley went home tonight around 7 PM. There were simply too many issues for her to overcome. Thus, the Lord gave her rest. Please pray for Greg, Alyssa and Reed during the difficult days that lie ahead.

BREAKING NEWS: Update on Shelley

The news from Shelley this morning is not good. Overnight, she had a massive brain hemorrhage inducing a stroke. She was rushed back to Baylor Hospital (she has been at a rehab center the last week or so). The family has been called in. Please pray for Shelley, her husband Greg, her daughter Alyssa and her son, Reed. I'll update this as soon as I know more.

Update on Shelley White - May 7

Here's the latest update on Shelley Burks-White. Thanks for remembering to pray for her on this National Day of Prayer.

"Shelley is now in the Baylor Specialty Hospital. She was moved Tuesday afternoon. As you might expect, Tuesday was a very difficult day - she was so frightened and anxious as well as being in so much pain. The goal for this hospital is to get her off the ventilator and further along with physical therapy so that she can be moved to Baylor Institute of Rehabilitation. Our hope is that that will happen within another four weeks. Please pray specifically for that.

Shelley seems to be doing well from the transplant prospective. Her liver has not shown rejection and her "numbers" continue to improve. The best thing so far - her kidneys seem to be acting again. Coming from a woman who kept her babies's diapers dried, did not allow puppies in the house, and has encouraged her sweet husband to "lift the lid", I have never been so ha…

An unusual birthday

For those who don't know, today I celebrate my birthday. Today, however, the celebration will be a bit more muted.

We received word early this morning that Rev. Ken Brown, Julie's grandfather, passed away sometime in the night. Like the true Christian gentleman I knew him to be, he slipped away quietly into the arms of the Savior he's longed for and served these many years. He just turned 91 this year (last week in fact) and had been in failing health, so it wasn't really a shock. It is, however, a loss to us in a profound way. Shadows of legacy like the one he cast are long. The legacy of faithfulness and Christian service is one I hope someday I can say I tried to emulate.

Please pray for us as we make plans to gather and mark his home-going. Right now, it appears it will be early next week near Rogers, Arkansas.

Update on Shelley Burks-White

Here's the latest update on Shelley received this morning. Remember, our blood drive for Shelley is Sunday, May 17th from 9:30 AM - 2 PM.

"As I believed it would, today went so much better than the week-end. Shelley was kept very busy today with physical therapy, etc.
She got a good assessment from the Transplant Team and plans are still underway to move her to the Speciality Hospital either tomorrow or the next day. I hope it is tomorrow so that she will be settled in before her birthday which is Wednesday. The best thing today was that she got to get her dialysis line removed. The doctor said that didn't mean that she might not have to have dialysis later but for now he does not plan it. Her kidneys are beginning to activate!
When she is kept busy she has less anxiety, so, overall, today has been a better day.
Tonight, pray that Shelley will rest and that her move to the other place will not be too stressful. Continue to pray that our move there will be the perfect …

Update on Shelley White - May 4

Below, you'll find our latest update on Shelley White's condition. Please continue to pray for her as she continues her healing.

Another week-end has passed and as usual, not much was accomplished. On Friday, Shelley was able to stay down to "5" (which is very good) on the ventilator for 2 hrs, but today was not able to withstand any reduction in settings. I think this is partly because the week-end nurses come in not knowing much about what she is able to do and don't work with her very much. She has not received any physical therapy since Friday. I look forward to Mondays when the routine starts over and we see progress.
Shelley has been in a lot of discomfort today and it has been very difficult to watch her suffer. She has had a lot of bloody mucous from her throat which the doctor thinks is old blood coming from her stomach (something they are watching). She is becoming increasingly frustrated over not being able to speak or swallow liquid. I had ex…