Category Archives: Random

UNDERSTANDING

The news media overflows with yesterday’s “protests” by many NFL players, comments from team owners, and even NBA players picking up the offenses of others—a process apparently begun by Colin Kaepernick last season when he knelt during the national anthem. [He reminds me somewhat of me (a Baptist preacher) in a Catholic church—no real clue about when to stand, when to sit, when to kneel, or what to say!]

Given the current bruhaha amongst us, it seems to me that if anyone on the playing field of American life should understand what is happening, it should be professional athletes. Here’s why—(and I’ll limit my scope to the NFL)—the principles would apply across the boards.

Almost everyone understands there are two sides to every contest—offense and defense. If Mr. Kaepernick (and all the subsequent players who have joined his expressions of concern for a cause)— (I’ll expand this momentarily)—of all people, he should have expected to see pushback. No one should be surprised that whenever one side goes on the offensive, the defense responds, pushes back, and stops advancement.

However, if Kaepernick was the one man setting the example for the offense, then yesterday Mr. Alejandro Villanueva, a former Army Ranger, set a perfect example for the defense! While the Pittsburgh Steelers coach, Mr. Mike Tomlin, sought neutral political ground on which to stand, his decision shows a lack of understanding.

If Mr. Tomlin truly understands solidarity and team unity, then he should understand that solidarity and unity as a nation is more important than that of a team of grown men fighting over a piece of pigskin filled with air. However, what escapes an apparently growing number of sports figures, commentators, and everyday citizens, has escaped increasingly many political leaders in our nation’s capital as well—sacrificing our national health for some warped political prowess.

So, in my thinking, I see two examples before me, representing two sides: Colin Kaepernick and Alejandro Villanueva—the one side offensive, the other defensive. One demonstrates a lack of respect for my country (by disrespecting my flag), about as offensive as it gets, while the other exhibits respect and good character, even if it means standing alone.

However, when Mr. Villanueva walked to the head of the tunnel, stood at attention with his hand over his heart, I said to myself, “There’s a great representative of the defense.” It takes character—backbone—to put our highest premium on principles. Principles transcend pigmentation, and it’s high-time that Americans sorted these issues based on principles. While the NFL is filled with tremendous talent, without principles and good character, it becomes a disgrace and dangerous for the health of our nation.

BTW, do you pray? If so, wouldn’t today be a wonderful time to pray for the health of our country? Our national health has little to do with politics or pigmentation, but everything to do with principles—well established for us in the Word of God and in the Constitution of the United States.

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WE LOST A FRIEND TODAY

Each day, 151,600 times, millions of people around the world will lose a friend—ripped from their lives by the icy fingers of death.  Today the snatch ‘n grab of morbidity targeted Mr. Terry Watson, friend of all who ever called the Detroit Skating Club their “home.”

 For forty years Terry and his wife Diane operated the Ice Sports Café off the main lobby of Detroit Skating Club, one of the world’s premiere training facilities.  While there are numerous reasons why DSC became a club of renown, one of the reasons has been Terry Watson and people like him. 

 That may sound strange to some people, especially since Terry really had nothing to do with coaching Olympic hopefuls or training world medalists on-ice.  However, he had everything to do with setting an example, creating an atmosphere, and establishing a mindset for winners … oh, and serving up some pretty darn-good, delicious food! 

 No matter who came through the doors at DSC—a newly enrolled learn-to-skater, a hockey player from any of the high schools or universities that called DSC their home ice, seasoned world and Olympic medalists, parents, grandparents, or nannies—if they interacted with Terry, the thumbprint of his influence on them was certain. 

Last Friday evening, 130 skaters took the ice in front of a packed house in C-Rink at DSC to honor their friend Terry, who only a couple of weeks earlier had received the diagnosis of advanced Stage-Four pancreatic cancer.  I was there – for three reasons really. 

 First and foremost, I love Diane and Terry Watson, so I was in town and wanted to be there for them.  Second, my wife Debbie (DSC office manager) had assigned me the responsibility of purchasing several cases of bottled water and delivering them early for the huge meal that DSC members brought for the event.  Third, Diane and Terry had asked if we could talk privately. 

 What I observed throughout the evening is beyond my ability to adequately describe, so I won’t even attempt it in detail.  However, I want to summarize it this way—Terry Watson, with his precious wife Di and daughter Bethany by his side, and his extended family surrounding him at center ice, gave a standing ovation to the representative crowd to whom he had given his life—one specially prepared meal, snack, or encouraging word at a time. 

 Further, Terry and his entire family graciously allowed hundreds of parents and skaters  the opportunity to come by for a few moments of private words, hugs, and photo ops.  A few hours later, Debbie, Diane, Terry and I got our few minutes together privately—behind the closed door of the Ice Sports Café, moments which I will harbor in my heart as some of life’s most precious.

This morning, Terry stepped from time into eternity.  The loss hurts everyone who knew and loved him.  However, we have awesome memories until we catch up with him one of these days … and I have it in my mind that there will be a time when Debbie, Diane, Terry, and Dale will join hands there, just like we did here! 

BTW, do you pray?  If so, would you ask God to minister His comfort, grace, and peace to the hearts of the Terry Watson family?  While you’re asking for that, would you also petition Him for comfort for the hearts of the thousands of Terry’s friends … who will miss reaching across the counter of the Ice Sports Café counter and shaking his big, hard-gripping hand?  Thanks

RIP, my friend

USING MEMORIES ON FATHERS DAY 2017

Perhaps it’s a natural component to the process of aging, but I find myself reflecting and reminiscing more these days. However, I know that I’m not alone in this. A casual review of Facebook also verifies that we humans have the innate propensity of remembering the past … or at least glimpses of it.

One of the first things I see each morning from Facebook is “On this day …” or “You have memories …” For most of us it is a picture of something special that happened, a place we visited, or a person that we enjoyed meeting. Sometimes the memories are painful perhaps, like the death of a loved one or some personal tragedy.

Memory is an interesting phenomenon to me … perhaps because mine isn’t always very good (if it ever was)! For example, I can recall events of fifty years ago while forgetting where I put my truck keys or left my sunglasses just five minutes ago! I’ll remember the details of a story of something from decades ago, but forget that I told you the same story a few weeks ago.
However, approaching Father’s Day, I’m thankful for many excellent memories from childhood, especially of my father—Ralph Henry Peterson. Perhaps this is because I’m quickly approaching the age of my father when he died.

Ralph, Hazel, & Dale

Since all dads either have died or will die at some point future, that isn’t what’s on my mind today, but rather how are we living the lives that we have today? Reflecting on that is one of the greatest advantages of memories—especially when they are memories of a father who exemplified great character qualities, Ralph Peterson did.

Do you doubt me on this? Ask his friends, former employers or employees, neighbors, or relatives! Everyone who ever knew dad for any length of time beyond a casual passing could tell you. He was quiet, thoughtful, courteous, wise, and gentle … well, usually gentle. (There are plenty of memories from childhood when he wasn’t very gentle with me. Dad thought that Dr. Spock was a crock, so memories of waiting in my bedroom for dad to come home from work, the sound of his lunch box hitting the kitchen counter, and his belt coming out of the belt loops are still vivid to me!) But I digress …

No …, the digression is a vital part of what I’m saying. What Dr. Spock thought of “spanking” ill-behaved children didn’t matter to dad, since it was dad’s responsibility to raise me, not Spock’s. Dad chose to believe God’s Book over Spock’s and therefore it was dad who took a time out—to spank his three children when he deemed it necessary.

Further, neither today nor on any of those days when it was me receiving a spanking (we actually called them “whippings” back then), did I blame dad or doubt that he was doing what he deemed best in love for me. (I still think he should have loved my younger brother Dennis much more. 😊) But I digress … again …

Approaching this Father’s Day, reminiscing about my own father, while sitting in the Virginia Beach (VA) home of my oldest daughter Charity, her husband Brandon, and their two children Brynn and Cole, I find myself wondering, “What kind of dad was I … really?”

However, the sad thing about this line of thinking—most of that answer is already in my life’s review mirror and cannot be changed. I can only hope that it was sufficient in the past, and that I can use the mistakes of the past to become a better dad and Papa Pete going forward.

BTW, do you pray? If so, wouldn’t now be a wonderful time to thank God for your dad? Even with whatever deficits he may have had, you owe your very life to a man somewhere in this world, whether he’s in a church, a prison, or a graveyard! If you were raised by a godly father, you especially should be thankful, and endeavor to live out the godly characteristics that he modeled.

For those whose fathers were absent or less-than-favorable, do not waste that pain! Make a mental list of the deficits and turn that into a positive list of goals and objectives for yourself, and become the kind of man, woman, parent, or grandparent that you wished to have growing up. Turn your tragedy into a triumph!

Got to run! It isn’t a gate agent calling me today … it’s two grandkids who want Chick-fil-A! Bye!

Dale on Coronado (CA)

Political Perspective

Listening to the non-stop wrangling of politicians and their respective followers, I’m reminded of the importance of perspective.  The late Victor Borge was known for his “phonetic language,” postulating that we do not always understand each other because we do not use punctuation marks when we speak, as we do when we read and/or write.

Perhaps more closely to the truth, we misunderstand each other at times for various reasons, but quite often it’s because of our limited perspective.  Someone once said, “We don’t see the world the way it is; we see it the way we are.”  That’s a very limited perspective.

While Meriam-Webster offers four dimensions to their definition of the word perspective, let me simplify that in two.   First, they offer, in part, this meaning—“the technique or process of representing on a plane or curved surface the special relation of objects as they might appear to the eye.”

This explanation conveys to us the concept of illusion—that, for example, as we view a drawing or painting, we perceive depth when in reality, it is an illusion.  What is not real is created in such a way as to cause an observer to see it as real.

Secondly, Webster adds this dimension to their explanation—“the interrelation in which a subject or its parts are mentally viewed,” in contrast to the subject being physically viewed.  Ideally, the greater our understanding is, the better our capacity to view things in their true relations or relative importance.

Most of us have heard or said to others, “You need to maintain your perspective.”  I suppose each of us has come to realize keeping our perspective is more easily said than done at times along the trail of life.

BTW, do you pray?  If so, wouldn’t this be a great time for us to pray for perspective for ourselves as we navigate the twists and turns of life?  It may be that you, your friends, associates at school or work, or neighbors are faced with financial or physical difficulty.  Ask God to give you His perspective.

During the 1970s when I served as one of the missions pastors under the late Dr. Jerry Falwell Sr, I often heard him say that wisdom is “seeing things from God’s point of view.”  That is the perspective that each of us needs daily in life!

Thankfully, according to James 1:5 (ESV), “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.”

Further, as America approaches another presidential election, our citizens desperately need wisdom and perspective.  Without wisdom, many voters will be fooled by candidates who paint an illusion—pretending to be one thing, when in reality they are another.

Historically, America began with men—though imperfect—who understood the importance of Godly wisdom, and they appealed to Him in prayer, and did so in earnest.  I fear that some 240 years later, our nation is being lead to our demise by men and women who pretend to talk the talk, but their walks betray their talks!

Let us humbly pray until we see, not “through a glass darkly,” but rather from God’s perspective, and see all things clearly!

Dale on Coronado (CA)

Dale on Coronado (CA)

Will the Real President Please Stand Up

As a boy growing up on a dairy farm in Tennessee, I watched somewhat regularly the CBS television show To Tell the Truth, hosted by Bud Collyer, beginning in December 1956.  The show consisted of the host and a panel of 3-4 celebrities such as Tom Poston, Kitty Carlyle, and Orson Bean.

The premise of the show was for the “celebrity panel” to ask questions of three guests in order to determine which guest was telling the truth about who they were.  One guest was truthful, while two guests were imposters, merely pretending to be someone they were not.

Watching last night’s Republican “debate” on Fox News, I was reminded of that old television show.  Truthfully, there were a few resemblances.

For example, To Tell the Truth only had one host, whereas last night’s debate had three—two men and a woman—which is sure to tick off the women’s rights crowd … unless they feel that one Megyn Kelly is equal to a combined Chris Wallace and Bret Baier.

Also, last night there was a live audience to watch the taping of the show … er … debate … only the audiences at the NYC tapings of To Tell the Truth listened intently and quietly, while last night’s audience appeared to be more like cheerleaders for their respective guest panelists.

And speaking of audiences—and panelists—unlike the TV show To Tell the Truth, where the celebrity panel voted on who they thought was telling the truth, it’s the combined live and television audiences who must eventually vote for which “celebrity panelist” we think is telling the truth!

The thing that strikes me most, however, as I compare the old To Tell the Truth with last night’s debate is this—Was there even one panelist in seven who told the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth—with no spin?

To tell the truth, I’m not sure—and therein may be the greatest issue of all.  Grassroots America has been lied to so many times by so many politicians concerning so many issues that citizens no longer trust ANY politician to tell the truth!

BTW, do you pray?  If so, then from now until Election Day would be an excellent time to pray for our country.  That we are a nation in crisis, distress, and trouble is not debatable.  The debate lies in who is the right leader, with the right solutions, so that we—the grassroots panelists—can vote this November for a real president, not an imposter!

Dale Peterson First Grade 1956 scan0001

Impacting Others

Two deaths in recent days have captured my attention—one on the west coast and the second in the Midwest.  Both have my mind racing with thoughtful consideration of the impact that one individual’s life can make in our world.

The first death was that of USN Master Chief (Ret) Joe Hutchins.  In a blog on 11 November 2014, I wrote a few Veterans Day Thoughts about Joe Hutchins, whose military career was stellar, though almost entirely under the radar, since he served as a SEAL.  [Click here, then scroll down to VETERANS DAY THOUGHTS, if you’d like to read it.]

Perhaps few people alive today, will ever know the impact that Joe’s life in the United States Navy made.  However, I know that within the duration of 45 minutes, just sitting beside Joe on the couch in the lobby of his realty office on Palm Avenue in San Diego and chatting, deeply impacted my life.

Our conversation that day in July 2012 wasn’t about Joe and his accomplishments—it was about America and the principles that once made our nation great.  That quiet man spoke softly and I listened intently to the words of an experienced and wise man.  Thank you, Joe—for your service of stealth to our country and for a few minutes of your time as you made your way down the home-stretch of your journey in life.

Celebrating Freedom with a Hero

Celebrating Freedom with a Hero

The second death was that of forty-nine year old Scott Lewis.  It was in the early 1970s when I met Scott, his late-father Bill, mother Jean, and older siblings Greg and Sherry when I served as an associate pastor at First Baptist Church of Washington, Michigan.  While losing touch with Scott after leaving that ministry, I was reminded by his family each time I returned through the years that he had come to faith in Christ on Sunday evening when I preached a story-message on John 3:16.

That’s such a small detail, isn’t it?—except to Scott, his family, and now to me.  You see, by the time Scott was old enough to be in the youth department, I had relocated and was ministering in another church and city.  However, the results of one man, one message, and one Sunday service made an eternal difference for one pre-teen in that audience.

Yesterday, as my wife Debbie and I talked with the family and friends at the Wujek-Calcaterra Funeral Home, the most prominent topic in almost every conversation was about how Scott had come to faith in Jesus Christ after hearing that “John 3:16 sermon!” In those moments, I realized the profound comfort this family was experiencing because the lives of one young lad and one young man (at least I was young back in the 1970s!) intersected in a meaningful manner.

That begs the question—Whose life am I impacting today?  Whose life are you impacting?  Each of us impacts someone else … lots of them … along life’s journey.  Some impact may be revealed to us in this life; all of it will be revealed in the next.  Let’s make it count for God and for good!

BTW, do you pray?  If so, would you pray for Pat Hutchins, Joe’s widow, and his family and friends as they grieve his death?  Also, would you pray for the Lewis family?  Although they find great comfort in knowing they will see Scott again because of their mutual faith in Christ, they still sorrow—especially his two daughters, Anna and Grace.

Finally, it would be fitting for each of us to pray for ourselves, asking our Heavenly Father to allow our lives to leave a positive influence on those we encounter each day.  Since we have no assurance of another day, let’s make that impact today!

Dale on Coronado (CA)

Dale on Coronado (CA)

Dale

Great Friends

It seems that saying “Goodbye” to great friends never gets easier.  A few minutes ago, we pulled in front of the airport terminal in Roanoke (VA), where two great friends were dropping me off for my now-delayed flight to Atlanta (GA), where I still hope to catch another flight to Hartford (CT).  It isn’t unusual for me to spend Mondays in airports and airplanes.

However, I am discovering in recent years especially that it is never easy to say “Goodbye” to good friends.  Such was the case a few minutes ago here in Roanoke.  Friends have come to mean so much more through the years to me.

Late Saturday evening … the night of the Spring-forward time change … my friend of twenty years, Mark Grooms, picked me up out front.  We were both exhausted, so other than the non-stop conversation during the one-hour drive to his home east of Lynchburg, we quietly retreated to our bedrooms and collapsed for a short night’s sleep.

Mark and I talked away any hope of an afternoon nap, while his mother, Albertina Grooms, graciously listened to two Baptist preachers excitedly try to tell stories to each from decades of ministry experiences, especially as they related to two of our mutual mentors—Dr. John Rawlings and Dr. Jerry Falwell.  Periodically, this wonderful octogenarian (who celebrates another birthday today) would inject a comment, then listen quietly as we continued.

Following the evening mission conference banquet at Thomas Terrace Church, and comfortably settling into the family room, Mar, his wife Renee, Albertina, and I returned to our conversations.  Evening after the ladies had retired for the night, Mark and I kept talking until after midnight … but continued over morning coffee right where we’d left off only a few hours earlier.

Some 36 hours later, our time together was over.  We’re saying and hugging our goodbyes, when someone said, “Let’s pretend like we’re young and know what we’re doing and take a selfie!”  Mark took a better photograph than I captured on my phone, but any photo is good when great friends are saying “Goodbye!”

mark albertina dale 09 march 2015

BTW, do you pray?  If so, would you join me in praying for God to use TTBC’s “Regions Beyond” mission conference to impact many lives for eternity?  I was only the keynote speaker to open their conference, but other ministry guests will do the main work throughout the week.  Also, pray for my friend Albertina Grooms.  This wonderful widow (her husband was J.O. Grooms of Treasure Path to Soul-Winning and other scripture-memory publication fame) continues to be a blessing and encouragement to all who become acquainted with her.

Well, they’re announcing flight DL4962, so I must adjourn for now.  Cheers!

Son and Grandson

Yep—here I sit in my DTW-Online Café “office,” and my mind is a whirl of thoughts … answering emails, scheduling meetings, booking flights … all the typical stuff.  However, my mind continues to default to thoughts about tomorrow.

Oh, these aren’t thoughts really of the details and meetings that are scattered from Manchester to Stafford (England).  No, they are thoughts of my grandson Jared.  Fifteen years ago tomorrow, my first grandchild was born back home in Michigan.

The mental gymnastics that spin in my mind are bittersweet though, since his father, my oldest son Justin, is not here to witness his son’s fantastic journey.  There is one thing for certain; Justin would be very proud of Jared.

Most times when Jared and I are together, I bite my tongue lest I weary him of comments about how much like Justin he is!  It has been that way since he was an infant.  There have been times when I was ambushed by my emotions when we have been together—a look in Jared’s eyes, his hands, some mannerism.

427192_374487109286790_1033388708_n

I understand the DNA aspects and inherited physical characteristics, although I don’t grasp the differences in height and shoe size!  All that 5’ 9” Justin could muster was an 8.5 shoe, but his 6’ son is wearing a size 12!  Yet, beyond the physical are the personality characteristics—the wit, the sarcasm, and the list could continue.

Through the myriad of thoughts is the solid constant—Justin would be proud—very proud—of Jared as he turns 15 tomorrow.  Though Justin was not a hunter or fisherman, he was ever the athlete.  Jared not only captured the athletic genes from his dad, but added to those skills, hunting and fishing as well.

BTW, do you pray?  If so, would you join me in a brief prayer of gratitude for Jared and his family, and an extended time of prayer for all the kids across America who are growing up with the empty seat in their lives where a parent once sat?  The price of freedom is far greater than dollar signs reflect.  There is a silent price tag hanging in the hearts of children, teenagers, and adults—those who experience daily life without someone they would love to have with them every day!

The flight to Manchester is boarding, so I’ll leave you to pray.  Cheers!

Dale on Coronado (CA)

Dale on Coronado (CA)

Preparation

Debbie and I are hosting an after-Christmas dinner tonight for our local children and grandchildren.  While I spent New Year’s Day working in the office, she spent the day cleaning and preparing for this family get-together.

Before leaving for her office at the Detroit Skating Club this morning, she walked me through all the steps of preparation that I must make before everyone else arrives late this afternoon—plates, napkins, chips, bowls, dips, platters of hors d’oeuvrs, ice bucket, drinks, etc.  She wanted to make sure that we are ready for the arrival of our family members.

Well, all of that started me thinking about other preparations.  For example, I’ve noticed that most people carry a spare tire—(not the one around the middle)—in or on their vehicles, just in case they have a flat tire while traveling.  I suppose that most adults have some kind of health insurance, just in case they get sick.  A few of us have a “go bag” or “bug-out bag” stashed somewhere, just in case there is an emergency.

Just in case …

Here’s my question—have you made preparation for the one event that is certain to happen to you?  This is something that few people care to discuss, for fear of sounding a bit morbid (pun intended). However, there are no if’s, and’s, or but’s” about it, as mother used to say.  “It is appointed unto man once to die … “ (Heb 9:27)

Like it or not, that event is one day closer for each of us than it was yesterday.  Have you made the preparation?  I’ve had a wonderful life—every year—since 1950, in spite of a few tough times, storms, and valleys along the way!  Could this be the year that the icy fingers of death tap you or me on the shoulder because our numbered days have come to their end?

BTW, do you pray?  If so, perhaps today would be a great time to pray, while it’s in your control, in preparation for that time that is beyond your control—death!  I know!  I know!  “What a depressing way to begin a new year!” you may be thinking.

Quite the contrary—there’s nothing in the world more depressing than the thought of anyone who ever reads these words failing to make preparation for the inevitable in life!  The Good Book says, “Today is the day of salvation!”

BTW, if you do not pray, the greatest way that I know of to begin praying would be to blurt out to God in your own words that you recognize that you are a sinner … that you recognize that He is the Savior … and that you want Him to personally be your Savior!

Then, tell someone else that you made that decision!  Don’t know who to tell?  Write and tell me!

What an exuberant thought—I’m prepared!  Cheers!

dale

Remembering Mom

Thirty-four years ago today, I stood before a standing-room-only audience in the chapel of Mynatt’s Funeral Home in Knoxville, TN and delivered a eulogy—one that was at the same time one of the most difficult that I have ever given and also one of the easiest.  It was for my 53-year-old mother—Hazel Peterson—whose life had been cut short by a drunk driver.

MOM AND DAD WEDDING DEC 20 19470001

Also three and one-half decades later, I have forgotten many of the details.  However, there are some things I haven’t forgotten.  Let me divide those memories into two categories—the difficult and the delightful.

Once the word circulated that I was preaching my own mother’s funeral, many people asked, “Oh! How will you do that?!”  To be sure, I knew that it would be difficult, but that was what mother wanted.

When mother died on Friday, December 19, 1980, I was with her.  Other than the few medical staff who quietly came and went, she and I were alone.  From my arrival at her bedside in the wee hours Monday morning, December 15th, I had spent the majority of each day and night by her side.  Though mom initially tried to respond to both my brother Dennis and me when we each arrived in ICU, she remained unresponsive thereafter.

In spite of the missing responses, I talked to her, prayed with and for her, and even sang to her.  Friday morning, was no exception, although that day would be different.  It would be the last day that I would hold those hands that had cared for me since the day three decades earlier when this lady had given birth to me in that same hospital.

As the medical staff reverently removed all life support, I silently watched the heart and respiration monitors until someone broke the silence by softly stating her time of death.  The staff slipped from the room, I prayed once again, and quietly walked to another room a few doors away.

Because of his own injuries from the same accident, dad was confined to another ICU room down the hall at St. Mary’s hospital.  All week I had reported any changes in mother’s condition to him immediately. Now I am standing by his hospital bed, his hand in mine, and our eyes fixed on each other.  “Dad,” I said softly, “she’s gone.”

I do not recall how long we remained almost motionless with silent tears coursing down our cheeks, but I think it was dad who spoke first.  Among the things he said were these words, “Your mother had a request.  She wanted you to preach her funeral. Can you do it?”  With my eyes still locked onto his, I replied, “If that’s what mom wanted, then that’s what mom will get.”

Now, with the most difficult behind me, I stand before those assembled to pay their respects to my mother.  The sheer magnitude of the crowd—hours of visitation that went past midnight on Sunday, combined with this audience—told me something of this simple woman’s impact in the lives of others.  What a delight to see her influence on others!

Skipping the details that were used that morning thirty-four years ago, let me summarize the delight this way—my mother lived a life that gave me something with which to work at her funeral!  I did not have to dig for positive things to say about her life—the evidence was everywhere any of us looked!  The people on those pews had their own testimonies of how her life had impacted them for good and for God!

BTW, do you pray?  If so, perhaps this would be a prime opportunity to join me in praying that our lives can be lived that way, too!  Perhaps in this life we may never know the magnitude of our influence for Christ.  However, we can faithfully do our best each day in obedience to His Word, perhaps like an old song says:

Sowing in the morning, sowing seeds of kindness,

Sowing in the noontide and the dewy eve;

Waiting for the harvest, and the time of reaping,

We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves.

To my way of thinking, the child of God’s daily life should stand in stark contrast to the world in which we live today.  Such a life will certainly stand out for the right reasons, and will impact positively the lives of others.  Thank you, mom, for setting that kind of example for your three children!

Dale, Gina, & Dennis

Dale, Gina, & Dennis