Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Ending of Summer in Oklahoma

The humming birds are gone.  They left us early this year ....   what do they know?   ........ The fleas are laying as many eggs as possible before the freeze .......       ..... The banana leaves are drooping.   .......Winter berries are appearing.      .......   And fancy grasses are turning purple. ....   while  Grasshoppers are chewing and chewing ...........    The dogwood leaves are showing the first sign of color.     .....   The pink bromelied blossom has dried up ......  .... The final hibiscus has bloomed. .......  Dried leaves are dropping into the elephant ears which will have to be dug up.   ........Ken is sweeping leaves  ....    while babying Duke who is feeling very puney.......   our summer is ending ...........    soon will be the season of raking leaves and throwing new fescue grass seed ..... mulching ..... and bundling up ...... the fall comes ...... and then the winter .......  every season is vital ........ a part of new life.   ....................................... ......                         "As long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and  night will never cease."  Gen 8:22

Saturday, September 26, 2009

People are Just Human Beings ... and We All are God's Creatures .....

I always wondered if there was something wrong with me. You know those surveys where one of the questions is “if you could meet any famous person in the world, who would you want to meet and spend a day with.” I never could think of one specific person I would want to meet. Made me feel something was wrong with me. But people are just people. I love them all (mostly all) and I just can’t think of one person I would like to meet. Usually people put down the name of a famous movie star, singer, a past president, whatever. I’ve never had an answer for that question.
I remember many years ago, someone, I think it was the Vice President of the USA at that time, came to Tulsa to give a speech. Interpreters were provided, and I was selected. A newspaper reporter came to me and said, how does it make you feel to be interpreting for the Vice President of the USA? I lied I think, with something like oh it is so exciting and an honor. Though excited to work, it was not about the man. He was just another person and I had a job to do.

I tend to feel more honor for the office than for the man. More respect for the office of president than his humaness. (Off track now:  At the same time, some are far more respectable than others. If one disgraces his office, it is repulsive to me.)  But so much for that introduction: here is my point.

Yesterday, I was on an interpreting assignment in which when the ‘man’ walked out, albeit with the aid of a walker and a person on each side,  I grabbed my camera for a picture. I knew the pictures would not be good, I just had something to document . I thought to myself, what am I doing … this is not like me. The man was Oral Roberts, age 91, and he had come to celebrate, to pray for and pronounce a blessing on the new President of Oral Roberts University.

The difference -- the heritage, the stand this man had taken. Though a man with human frailties and mistakes, he certainly hated the criticism, yet he stood for righteousness in the midst of opposition much of his life. A man who, when he believed God told him to take God’s healing to his generation, was ostracized by his church denomination and by his community. Though in those days, he was responsible for bringing more economic blessing to our community, Tulsa disliked him, scoffed at him.    During my college years, professors repeatedly made derogatory remarks about Oral Robert’s City of Faith and his 900 foot Jesus. But the man never gave up on what he believed God wanted him to do.
So here again, I think my love affair is not for the person, it is for what the man represents … the office he holds. His attributes of integrity, creativity, faith in God, willing to do what he believed correct in God’s eyes and righteousness. Yes, Oral Roberts is just a man, yet, he had a great impact upon my family, both positive and negative. We were close enough to know his warts, idiosyncrasys, humanness, but he stood for something much greater than human frailty.

When Ken was a young child, Oral Roberts was his pastor in Shawnee Oklahoma.. When I was 13 years old, my father moved our family to Tulsa to work with the Oral Roberts Evangelistic Association. When Ken and I were newly weds, we traveled with those massive tent crusades during  the 50’s. And finally, two of my children graduated from ORU, even though neither of them aspired to do so.
In their high school years, the local attitude toward ORU was one of mockery among their peers and teachers. What Tulsa high school teenager would aspire to go to a university whose motto came from a man who believed that God told him to:
“Raise up your students to hear My voice, to go where My light is dim, where My voice is heard small, and My healing power is not known, even to the uttermost bounds of the earth. Their work will exceed yours, and in this I am well pleased.”
 Who wants the emphasis of college days to be educating the whole person … the body, the mind and the spirit. The youthful mindset is college is a time for party fun.

A young 17–year-old boy, dying of tuberculosis, received a touch from God, healing his body and commissioning him to build God a university built on God’s authority and on the Holy Spirit. He may not have known how to do it, but he was willing to be obedient to his convictions, one step at a time, willing to be jeered, and willing to learn as he traveled his journey through life.
So now I know, that is the reason why I pulled my camera out yesterday. Knowing I was too far away for a decent picture, I wanted to document integrity, I wanted to remember the visual aid of faith in God, and to document that when one honors God and parents as best they know, anyone can live a long fruitful and honorable life. Here is to honor, here is a tribute to Faith in God.  This to me is exciting.

Monday, September 21, 2009

The Deck is Done .... for now

Now we will have to have a party ....  We have to wait for the wood to dry before sealing it and that might be next spring.  But it looks very nice.  Pops bought the bench and two lounge chairs from the neighbor who was moving away.  The spa is now level.  We can put tangerine scent in the spa, put on the Hawaiian music on and dream of our trip to our favorite tropical country.  We can even bring the banana trees to the back deck now while we eat pineapples and coconuts.      Great vacation ... our back deck ... which we are very happy is safe again.

PS: And Lowes boasts we will receive an 81% return on our investment when sellling our home.  hummmm..
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Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Broken Arrow Made the "1 of 25" Best Places to Retire in the USA

Population: 90,700
% over 50: 23%  (Thats Ken and Me)
Typical 3-bedroom home: $140,000
State income tax: 5.50%*

Located about 15 miles southeast of Tulsa, this quiet community provides residents the ease of suburban living with close proximity to metropolitan offerings like museums, shopping and dining. Broken Arrow has seen major growth in the past decade, thanks to home prices that start in the low $100,000s.
Golfing is a chief pastime here, with seven courses in town and several just beyond its borders. Broken Arrow has a traditional downtown commercial district, with local shops and restaurants. The downtown also boasts the Broken Arrow Historical Museum, the Broken Arrow Community Playhouse, and a spanking new performing arts center, which will host its inaugural concert Sept. 29.
Broken Arrow's hospital shut down a few years ago, and residents currently have to drive to Tulsa to reach the closest hospital. But construction began in March on a 96-bed hospital right in Broken Arrow. Plans for the development also include a medical office building and a retail center. --B.B
This is what Money Magazine reported.   Anybody want to move here?

Thursday, September 10, 2009

This Tree Was My Mothers Sacred Spot in Her Youth

My Parents left us children a rich heritage.  In one of her letters, Mother wrote the following:  "I was born on March 14, 1902 in a one-room addition to the old log house that was located where the old barn now stands.  In the fall when the leaves came down, we would go to the Sugar Tree, rake up the leaves and play in the leaves.  We would also swing on the long limbs that ran out from the base of the tree.  After I was saved at age 18, the Sugar Tree became my favorite PRAYER Place.  I especially liked it as a  place to read God's WORD because I was far enough away from the house that I felt I could pray aloud.   I remember the Sugar Tree as a place to play and pray.... ...... when I felt that I'd really received a blessing, I would take a maple leaf from the tree and place it in my Bible to remind me that God had really met me there." 
In MY childhood, our only family vacations were to visit our Grandmas.  The  foundest memories are of our Mothers ole' home place where we played in the creek, in the barn and hiking to the Sugar Maple Tree or up the hill to the cemetery were my sister Virginia Merle was burried.  Mother would also show us the little bed she slept in and tell us stories of her childhood in those Virginia hills.
The Sugar Maple tree today is 300 years old, and reported to be second  largest Sugar Maple in Virginia  in trunk circumference.  This tree is the largest for canopy spread and height.  The photo was taken by my nephew, Stephen, and standing by the tree is my oldest brother, Bill.  It was taken last week when they visited the ole' home place.   Thanks Steve for sharing.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Making the Foundation Sure

"If you work the words into your life, you are like a smart carpenter who dug deep and laid the foundation of his house on bedrock.  When the river burst its banks and crashed against the house, nothing could shake it: it was built to last.  But if you just use my words in Bible studies and don't work them into your life, you are like a dumb carpenter who built a house but skipped the foundation.  When the swollen river came crashing in, it collapsed like a house of cards, It was a total loss." Luke 6
Posted by PicasaWe are in the process of making our foundation sure.   The wear and tear of the world upon our lives can rot out a once good support system.  Never forget to be open to change when the hard knocks overcome what we thought was right in our life. Sometimes it can be those we trusted and loved the most that knock us the hardest.  With the Master Planner in control, it can only escalate from good to great.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

We Were Out In Our Back Yard .....

Right over our heads, it looked way too low for our neighborhood.   
I have no idea where it landed ... maybe in the parking lot of the corner shopping strip.Posted by Picasa

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Bonita and Kevin Visit Red Bud Valley

Kevin and Bonita sent photos of their family hike in Red Bud Valley. Hopefully they will tell us more about their outing. They look like it was a wonderful experience discovering those little creatures and beautiful flowers.  http://www.oxleynaturecenter.org/redbud.htm
To see photos more clearly, click to enlarge.Posted by Picasa

Good Morning World

We had a wonderful rain last night. I was called out on an emergency job in the night, so I slept in while Ken enjoyed the hot tub. It often serves as his prayer closet experience. This morning he grabbed the camera to behold the humming birds feeding, a sleepy Duke dog and the Morning Glories entwined with the Mandevilla which April gave me for Mother's Day. The eagle is the top of the American Flag pole on our back deck. The deck is still not complete, but it is getting closer.
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Thursday, September 3, 2009

Handiwork by the Master

Wednesday evening coming out of COTM about 8:15. There was beauty everywhere.

Last night there was lightening, thunder and rain in abundance. This morning my work day started at 7:00 and my last job ended at 10:00 pm. What a day!
It's almost midnight and I decided to look at something beautiful before I go to bed.

"With your finger you opened up springs and creeks, and dried up the wild floodwaters. You own the day, you own the night; you put stars and sun in place. You laid out the four corners of earth, shaped the seasons of summer and winter.

Mark and remember, GOD, all the enemy taunts,
each idiot desecration. Dont throw your lambs to the wolves; after all we've been through, don't forget us.

Remember your promises; the city is in darkness, the country side violent.Dont leave the victims to rot in the street; make them a choir that sings your praises.

On your feet, O GOD----- stand up for yourself/ Do you hear what the're saying about you, all the vile obscenities?

Don turn out their malicious filty, the brawling invective that never lets up.

We thank you God, we thank you -- your Name is our favorite word; your mighty works are all we talk about." Psalm 74 - 75 The Message

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Do Something Today That You Don't Get Paid For

I was raised in a home with the philosophy that you work your head off in the beginning even though you may be working for pennies .................
But If you work for nothing or for pennies long enough, the day will come when
My Dad use to tell us children all the time: "do something that you don't get paid for, and tomorrow, you will get paid for something you didn't do".

Crazy part is I married a man with the same philosophy. All our married life he has provided services for ministries and/or for individuals. Sometimes he thought he was going to get paid and didn't and other times he knew all along he was giving himself without monetary gain.
We've been married for 52 years now, he is 71 years old and today he still is doing it..... giving and giving and giving.

We are a blessed family. When our children were little and would ask us, "are we rich?" I always told them YES.....even when we did not know where the next dollar was coming from to pay the bills.

Thanks Ken, for being such a wonderful husband and father. And thanks for having the heart of a servant and serving as unto the Lord.

My Daddy went to be with Jesus more than 40 years ago, but thanks Daddy for teaching your children valuable principles of life.
And thanks to my Heavenly Father for your precious promises and your faithfulness. Your mercies are new every morning. I'm a blessed woman!