December 31, 2006

Happy New Year..

Let me be one of the first to wish you a Happy New Year. And for grins and maybe a smile or two, unless you’re too terribly religious, let me give you the TOP FIVE reasons why BEER Is Better Than RELIGION! (given to me by a friend who is very much a Christian, just non-religious.)

Some of you will have to think to even get these. So I guess this is for my non-religious, thinking friends.

1-No one will kill you for NOT drinking BEER!
2-BEER has never caused a major war!
3-There are LAWS saying BEER labels cannot LIE!
4-No one has been burned at the stake over his brand of BEER.
5-You don’t have to wait 2,000+ years for a second BEER!

These would be real funny if they weren't so true.

Lighten up a little! And may your 2007 be the most FREE & ENJOYABLE year of your spiritual journey thus far!

December 26, 2006

Fireside Memorial

It was somewhat sad that Preacher's Wife's dad died on Christmas day, but it was nice that all the children were home for Christmas and got to see him before he died. We had Christmas dinner together, then the children and grandchildren gathered around the fireplace as we had a family memorial service. We laughed as we recalled many wonderful memories with granddad. We decided not to have a funeral service since Mr. Lupher had out-lived all his friends. Preacher's Wife is doing fine and says thanks to all who have called and e-mailed. Mr. Lupher had been living with us for 5 years and she had been taking care of his needs 24/7. She told me she would like to take a restful trip. So off we go after the after the first of January.

December 25, 2006

UPDATE

To all our many friends, especially those who have been aware of the illness of Preacher's Wife's Dad. This is to inform you that he passed away at 11:20 a.m. today (Christmas Day). Thanks for your prayers.

The Preacher's Son

December 24, 2006

Creative Memories...

A university professor from Salt Lake City conducted an experiment at Christmas time, several years ago. He randomly selected six hundred names from telephone directories from several major cities and sent Christmas cards to each of them. His return address was included on the card, and he received an amazing one hundred and seventeen responses from the 600 cards sent to perfect strangers.

One replied, “I just got out of the hospital, and how good it was to hear from a longtime wonderful friend!” (Must have had amnesia!)

Another said, “We had difficulty at first remembering who you were, but after some thought, we finally remembered. Please give our love to your father. He is a wonderful man.” (What creative memories!)

One reply was unexpected, “It was really great to hear from you again. We will be in Salt Lake City this summer, and if you have a spare room, we would like to stay with you two or three days!” (I guess that’s what friends are for!)

December 23, 2006

Preacher's Wife's Dad

Preacher's Wife is such a loving and devoted daughter. She has been caring for her dad 24/7 for the past week. He took a turn for the worse and the doctors are saying now that he will not be with us but a few more days. Of course we cancelled our trip to Taos and the kids are coming here for Christmas. Hopefully, they will all arrive in time to see their granddad once more. You might keep Preacher's Wife in your prayers. Feel free to e-mail her at Preacher's Wife.
I know she would love to hear from you. As a preacher for over 30 years, people have told me they don't know what to say to their friends around the subject of death and dying. An old preacher once told me to just be my loving self. It has always seemed to work. So, just be your loving self. Preacher's Wife is one of the most realistic Christians I know, when it comes to life, death and dying. I will keep you posted.

The Preacher's Son

December 20, 2006

Ski San Antonio...Not!

We put our ski trip on hold, due to the fact that we had to take Anne's 85 year old dad to the hospital. He hasn't been doing well for a couple of weeks. We have decided as a family to all gather here and turn the A/C thermostat down as low as it will go, light the fireplace, and watch the Travel channel while eating a deep fried turkey. Being together as a family at Christmas, and eating turkey and ham is the most important thing anyway. We must always remember to keep the main thing --- the main thing.

December 18, 2006

Skiing Taos on Christmas Day

Everyone seems to be looking forward to leaving on Thursday to spend our Christmas in Taos, N.M. We have only skied Colorado and are looking forward to giving New Mexico a shot. I guess it all just depends on whether we get fresh snow. Anyway, our friends who have skied Taos said we will enjoy it and have a great time.

December 12, 2006

The devil's workshop...

Preacher's wife is determined to keep me busy during the holiday season. She said, "you know it is good for you to keep busy, because an idle mind is the devil's workshop". For some time now she has not liked our kitchen ceiling, so she chose this time of the year to keep the devil from overcoming me. Yesterday I overcame the devil by climbing in the attic and installing new lights in the kitchen, as well as a pot rack over her kitchen island. All we lack now is painting, and she will have her new kitchen look. For now I am free from the devil, but I am sure she will find something new for me to do, in order to keep me free. By the way the painting is now completed and this is the finished product.

December 5, 2006

Promises, Promises, Promises...

Why stay married? Simply because you promised you would. In my reading this week I came across something that I think sums it all up. At least it does for me.

In Thornton Wilder's 1940 drama The Skin of Our Teeth, a man named George comes back from the war to his wife Maggie, only to inform her that he has decided to leave her for another woman. Maggie counters with the announcement that she has a few words for him:

I did not marry you because you were perfect. I didn't even marry you because I deeply loved you. I married you because you gave me a promise. That promise made up for your faults. And the promise I gave you made up for mine. Two imperfect people got married and it was the promise that made our marriage... And when our children were growing up, it wasn't a house that protected them, and it wasn't our love that protected them, it was that promise. (Strong in the Broken Places, Leonard Sweet, page 150)

So the bottom line after acknowledging and dealing with our selfish human desires for greener pastures is... When we were married we made promises to each other. Promises are not made to be broken, they are made to be kept. We either keep them or we don't.

Why stay married?

Preacher's wife and I took some time out to discuss our 38 year marriage. We talked about the good, the bad, the ups, and the downs. Our conclusion was that we try it for another 38 years. Often people don't give marriage a fair shot. If they encounter something bad or difficult they just throw in the towel. We discovered that a lot of things that either was or seemed bad, actually turned out to work in our favor. I read an article this morning on Yahoo's home page about why spouses cheat on each other. There were some interesting insights, but the bottom line was that they take each other for granted and began to look for greener pastures. Preacher's wife and I both have observed lush greener pastures, but the problem is, they're not our pastures. And when we look closely there is always a 'No Trespassing' sign staring us in the face. So when the grass withers or flower fades what is it that keeps some couples together? I may address this in my next post.

December 1, 2006

Welcome back December

Well, December has arrived and it brought with it a cold spell to South Texas. I just love this time of the year. I love Thanksgiving and Christmas. I love turkey, ham, and pumpkin pies. I love being with family and friends. Oh, the smells, the goodies, and the music of Christmas brings to mind so many wonderful memories. Dr. Seuss was not thinking of me when he wrote, The Grinch That Stole Christmas. Charles Dickens would not have asked me to play Scrooge in his story. I don’t display the bumper sticker, Put Christ Back into Christmas. I have no bone to pick with this season, unless of course it’s off the turkey. I am not a preacher of anti-holidays or anti-Christmas trees. I choose to enjoy all of life without looking everywhere for something to be against. So what if others have forgotten the reason for the season, I haven’t. Did I fail to mention I love December because on the 6th day of this month every year I get to celebrate another year of being married to Preacher’s Wife. Yes, this year will be 38 years. It just seems to get better every year (at least for me).