For sixty-five years I have attended First Baptist Church. I believe it is foundational in its teaching from the Word of God. We lived in Lubbock for a couple of years and joined a church there but were glad to return home to FBC many, many years ago. The Holy Spirit has never led me from this place, even in times of questioning. It is our church home.
Here's the church, here's the steeple, open the door, and there are sinning people.
Here's the church, here's the steeple, open the door, and there are forgiven people.
Here's the church, here's the steeple, open the door, and there are grace giving people.
Here's the church, here's the steeple, open the door, and there are welcoming people.
Someone asked today why my thumbnail is painted green.
I'll tell you. Right now, it is green because this green is a favorite color, but it might be a different color another time. It is not always painted, but when it is, it serves as a reminder to me to extend grace and to look deeper into why another is responding to life the way they are. So, now you know!
Today as I was power spraying a ton of grackle poo off our porch, sidewalk and driveway, I was asking God what purpose the grackle serves. It is right up there with a mosquito on my list of disliked things.
So, there must be something good about them, right? Grackles, a native species in Texas, eat insects, for one. And that includes those you might not like crawling on you, such as wasps and spiders, and ones that damage crops, including moths, grasshoppers, and beetles.
Well, the thousands of Grackles in our neighborhood trees are not doing a good job of eating the mosquitoes, and their poo is horrible. So I am still not convinced of their goodness.
What God did share with me while I was cleaning the mess (2-hours worth of spraying) is that the Monarch butterflies are here. They were flitting around me in the water mist. God blessed me even though I was not happy and frustrated with these birds of horror!
Then, for the sixth time in a week, I saw a blue dragonfly...a God whisper reminding me that everything is going to be okay, "just keep following my lead." At my mother's graveside service, there were hundreds of blue dragonflies, a beautiful reminder of God's beauty in creation and, for me, a reminder from my mom that it's gonna be okay, whatever I am facing...just keep trusting God!
When I was all finished cleaning and scooping up buckets full of Grackle poo, God let me enjoy the Hummingbird at the feeder!!! No photo, it is too fast to run and grab my camera, so I simply enjoy the time it is there.
My lesson, in the "poo" of life; when we are frustrated and wondering, we must remain in Him, and he will continually bless us!!!
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. Lamentations 3.22-23
He set the earth on its foundations, so that it should never be moved. Psalm 104.5
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day. Genesis 1.1
From the rising of the sun to its setting, the name of the Lord is to be praised!Psalm 113.3
Every day with Jesus is sweeter than the day before!!!
On this day, twenty years ago, Plainview lost the best smile and the biggest heart. I was blessed to get to know Clay Warren when he served on the Junior Literacy Council of the Hale County Literacy Council. Everyone who knew him caught his "rays" of happiness.
He graduated, went off to college, and within five weeks, was with Jesus. A horrible accident that no parent should have to endure, but so many do. I don't think that I can express this day the same as his father does on his Facebook post:
"My heart is heavy today! 20 years ago today, I held my son Clay for the very last time. What a legacy Clay created for his life, even so short, and how simple he allowed his Mother and me to build on that legacy! I will never understand what happened that week, but know he went into the hands of God and has had total happiness since. Bad decisions and immaturity caused his death, and the system that allowed that bad decision by young men is to blame. Every year since his death, I have seen other parents and family members go through the pain, uncertainty, and hopelessness of the same bad decisions and immaturity that cause death on University campuses across the nation. It is an unbearable feeling and needs to be stopped. I will not stop asking for a change of tradition in student organizations, including Greek organizations, and totally, no more hazing! Some say this is part of life on campuses, but I say not true! Even the least harmful hazing leads to hazing that causes death.
Alumni, college administrators, parents, yes, parents, and fraternal organizations, wake up! This must stop!
May you rest, Clay, and understand your death, may if these individuals act responsibly, will save other young men and ladies' lives. I will always love you and do my part!
Clay Randall Warren
April 22, 1984-September 21, 2002
His parents, Freada and Mark Warren have worked tirelessly to make changes on university campuses to create a more safe and healthy Fraternal & Sorority life for students. Their goal is to educate to save lives so that other families may not experience such great loss. I am blessed to know Freada & Mark and consider them precious friends. Their Clay-rays shine bright as they extend the love of their son to future generations with hope!
The purpose of the Clay R. Warren policy is to allow Fraternity & Sorority Life staff the ability to work with organizations and student leaders to better understand risk management, areas of risk that apply to the organizations and/or its members, harm reduction, and current events surrounding the fraternal movement. This policy will ensure that the Texas Tech fraternity and sorority community receives education to develop a community of care. Moreover, this policy outlines expectations to ensure that Fraternity & Sorority Life and its organizations are a better partner to the Texas Tech University community.
Clay was an organ donor. Another "ray" of sunshine he offered. Several years back we hosted an organ donor awareness and walk in honor of Clay. We hope you will sign up to be an organ donor. In loss, we can help prevent a loss for other families.
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. 1 Corinthians 13:13
I do not own the rights to the lyrics or music of this piece, but aren't they beautiful ... just like Clay-ray!!!
Share Clay-rays wherever you go!!! Do unto others as you want to be done to you. Let's hold tight to this philosophy of living through goodness, compassion & hope as we make key decisions!
We have seen three concerts in five days, all at the WBU Harral Auditorium, and all three have been very enjoyable. The first two were with the Jimmy Dean Music and Arts Festival. Tonight's show was the season opener for the Community Concerts. Vinyl Radio carried us through the great music of the 70s. Their music, both vocal and instrumental, was excellent.
We always ask about heaven, what will it be like? As I think about this today, I am reminded that Jesus is our glimpse of Glory. The more we know about Jesus, what we learn is all we need to know. I love this thought.
Find joy in being lowly. Being a plebian allows us a true faith advantage of humbleness. Doing unto others as we want to be done to us is seen with way different eyes when we suffer. C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity, states, “True humility isn’t thinking less of yourself; it’s thinking of yourself less.” – be that person.
When someone is in a storm, be their encourager. Don't make everything about you and how others treat you. Allow others to see you being the encourager in their lives.