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Hmmm… I Am a Woman

Today we hear much reporting about the women’s march on Washington. At the risk of showing my ignorance, I do not understand the agenda. According to their web site,

The Women’s March on Washington will send a bold message to our new government on their first day in office, and to the world that women’s rights are human rights.

Hmmm… I am a woman. I am a member of the human race and my rights as an American are covered by The Declaration of Independence, Constitution, and Bill of Rights.

Hmmm… Is fear the motivation behind this “movement”; fear Planned Parenthood will face defunding and Roe v Wade could be reversed.

Hmmm… I wonder if the 2017 March for Life event scheduled  next week press will receive as much press coverage as that of the protests over the last few weeks/months. Oh wait, so silly of me. I forgot. Life is considered disposable not valuable. Right? (Psalm 139:1-18)

An after-hmmm… The organization’s title, planned parenthood, is an oxymoron.

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Hmmm… False Hope

Can anyone give me a definition of false hope?

My recent reading of The First Phone Call from Heaven, by author Mitch Albom, where a character asks what is false about hope prompts this question. I don’t believe there is such a thing as false hope but instead the unreliability of the subject we place our expectations.

What do you think?

Hmmm… Weathered Skin, A Violin and Joy

Tucked away somewhere in our family home is a black and white sketch that frequents my subconscious. An elderly disheveled looking man with weathered face and hands contentedly draws the bow across the violin strings. My thoughts are not taken to where he might be standing or for whom he is playing, but the look of joy on his face as the voices of cords and wood filter into the air. That expression brings to mind a quote by Sarah Young from her devotional book, Jesus Calling,

When you let others’ expectations drive you, you scatter your energy to the winds.

This aged gentleman is not concerned about others’ enjoyment of his performance, but the pure pleasure of producing a joyful sound.

I must find this sketch for my office wall as a reminder that joy is found within oneself not from outside circumstances.

Hmmm…The Practice of Giving Thanks

Neglecting the practice of giving thanks has darkened their minds.
~ Sarah Young, Jesus Calling

This I know is true; focusing on the negative is blinding. Following the February death of our parents, I found myself in a blue funk, a gloomy place with little interest in what normally brought pleasure. Yet today, as soft fluffy clouds float across a baby blue sky, nearly naked trees stretch their arms heavenward, and the smell of Mom’s stuffing tickles the nose, I find myself excited with anticipation for the day’s traditions and the making of memories with family and friends.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Hmmm… A Whole Lot of Roaring

There is a whole lot of roaring around the globe over the killing of Cecil the lion. Some are calling for the hunter’s extradition to Zimbabwe, while others suggest his punishment through bodily harm.

Hmmm… I wonder the absence of the same level of protest over the removal and sometimes desecration of our own national symbols; reminders of this country’s faults and merits.

If we remove and/or destroy the memories of paths traveled, how do we decide the next step in our journey? (Psalm 78)

Hmmm… The Essence of Family

Iridescent glass, sparkling china and knickknacks, a drawer full of bread ties, kerosene lanterns, stove-pipe covers on display. The soft glow of converted gas lamps, clocks with silent faces staring back at you, a welcoming field stone fireplace, the creak of a staircase where each child learned to “alleybump”.  A gallery of family photos lining the walls waiting to tell the family history, the “circle” each child traveled on the first floor; all represent the unmistakable smell of stability, familiarity, and unselfish love. That is what envelopes me as I sit in the quietness of home; the house where our parents raised us and where our own children learned the essence of what it means to be family. (1 Corinthians 13:4-7, 1 Timothy 5:8, Proverbs 22:6)

Hmmm… Devil Dog, Lovely and Me: A Recap

Seventy-two years have gone by since I first met Devil Dog. He was a fresh-faced kid on that hot July day in 1942, and kind of a smart-aleck, too. So, when the drill instructor gave me orders to be this new US Marine recruit’s protection from Mother Nature’s sting, I knew I was in for a wild ride. The excitement began shortly after leaving Parris Island, SC for our assignment in Jacksonville, FL at Aviation Machinist Mate School. Yep, an olive drab scratchy wool blanket in Florida, but I had my orders. Devil Dog must have learned his way around F4U Corsairs quite well. You see, sometime later while stationed on Emirau Island in the south Pacific, he had the privilege of being Colonel Charles Lindbergh’s line mechanic. Oorah!

Now, a lot of globetrotting was done by land, air, and sea before arriving at that tropical land mass along the equator. Yes, I know, a wool blanket in the tropics, but I had my orders. Semper Fi!

We saw some interesting sights along the way, giving us pleasant and even humorous memories, and some haunting ones that continue to hang around to this day. But, it is the memory of coming home to Vestal Center, NY and meeting Lovely that is the most precious, and the beginning of the best ride of my life.

It was Christmas 1947 and Devil Dog decided to join the local church in Christmas Caroling through the neighborhood. After spending the last few years in warmer climates, he was more than happy I tagged along. You see, the temperature that evening was five degrees below zero and we were huddled in the back of a stake body truck with only loose hay to keep us warm. Wahoo! Finally, my chance to carry out my duties after six years had arrived and was kind of exciting. However, I didn’t know how exciting until I saw Lovely sitting across the way. Devil Dog was watching her; in fact, he had been keeping an eye on her throughout the entire frigid night. Realizing she must have been as cold as he was, Devil Dog worked up the nerve to ask Lovely, “Would you like to share my blanket?” Wow, what a line! I held my breath waiting for her answer. What if she refuses? Will he turn me over to her? I have my orders. But wait, she is kinda cute.

Well, Lovely’s answer led to a sixty-six year adventure involving six children, 12 grandchildren, and 12 great-grandchildren. You see, Devil Dog and Lovely were married on December 24, 1948.

Over the years, I have heard Devil Dog say, “To me a woman is someone special. This may sound corny, but after all my travels and having observed the beauty that is of God, nothing He has made is more beautiful than a woman. A woman can buy and use many things to make herself look beautiful, but to me that doesn’t make her look lovely. Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary describes lovely as beautiful, morally and spiritually attractive, and enjoyable.”

Yes, Devil Dog, you are right; Mrs. Devil Dog is Lovely.