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Musings of the Minstrel

Monday, June 29, 2009

Happy Birthday Lady London

Today my little girl turned 15 years old. London, it is hard for me to believe that you are that old. I love you and I am proud of you.  It was a great day when God gave you to us.  Our house burned down 2 weeks after you were born and been smokin ever since. lol

You are the apple of my eye!  Happy birthday little lady.  (By the way, I have a surprise for your birthday)

Love Daddy

Friday, June 19, 2009

Earning Respect

I am sure by now many of you have read or at least heard about another embarrassing moment by one of California's senators. A particular military officer was being interviewed by a committee and was asked a question by a certain female senator. The officer responded and in the course of speaking he respectfully called her "Ma'am". Barbara Boxer interrupted him and demanded that he refer to her as "Senator" instead of Ma'am because she had earned the right to the title. While I was trying to figure out how she earned the title (she was elected) my mind began to think about truly earning respect. I am sure that "Senator" Boxer was trying to gain the upper hand in somewhat of a heated exchange and was trying to establish a level playing field. It must be a little intimidating sitting across from this big strong, effective, experienced and well decorated man in uniform on national television. So I am sure she was using some type of strategic debate verbiage to rattle him but her attempt fell flat and only resulted in making her look even smaller and more intimidated.

Respect cannot be demaded....it must be earned. I have listened lately to many "johnny-come-lately's" who are shouting their revelations, wisdom and answers from blog-land. It is interesting to me that most all of their revelations have to do with deconstructing the faith of their fathers. They seem to be attempting to establish some new something (who really knows) upon the heaps of ruin (destroyed by their own hands) while demanding the attention and respect of the rest of us. Is it just me or is anyone else a little confused by their pomposity with so little accomplishment? As we used to hear growing up "there is no corn in the crib".

Leadership is about respect but it cannot be demanded it must be earned. Sure, if you have an office or position or badge etc. you may can force your agendas on people for a season but somewhere things are going to begin to break down. People look for leaders whose lives have produced greatness.

Just some musings from the minstrel this morning as I thought about the craziness of the world we live in. Try and earn some respect before pontificating your greatness upon the rest of us.

(I think I need a latte....maybe it will make me a calmer and gentler soul this morning)

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Monday, June 15, 2009

"What A Friend We Have In Jesus"

Pastor Crawford, myself & Pastor Budgell

Scriven's little house

Beautiful "Rice" lake

Joseph Scriven was young Irish student who settled in Ontario Canada around 1849. He became the tutor to the family of a retired British Naval Officer named Pengelly. He lived in the little house over looking "Rice Lake". He fell in love with Pengelly's daughter and they were engaged to be married. The day before their wedding, she drowned in "Rice Lake". With his heart broken he penned the words to a poem and mailed it to his mother. It was entitled "Pray Without Ceasing". As the years went by the poem was set to music and given a new title "What a friend We Have in Jesus".

As I looked at the graves of Joseph Scriven and his sweetheart and gazing down the hill to "Rice Lake", I could not help but think, "blessings come from the strangest places"! This little place is out in the middle of nowhere. This was just a common man who experienced a gut-wrenching heart-ache. Here I was standing at his grave over a 100 years later and singing the poem that he had written so long ago. This song has become one of the most sung songs around the world. In China over 23 million people sing it every year. Scriven could never have imagined that his struggle would produce such a song of blessing for so many.

You may be going through a hard time right now and you feel like everything has gone crazy. You may not write a great song but I can tell you that out of your struggle can come great blessing as time goes by. I have thought about my own life over the last few days and remembered how God carried my through some very trying times. As time has gone by the difficulties that I had to face have become a source of faith, because I know that if God brought me through that situation then he will carry me through whatever I face today.

Keep your head up! You may have tears running down your cheeks but look to the hills from whence cometh your help. Your gonna make it.

Who knows, you may write the next great hymn!

p.s. Thanks to Pastor Crawford for taking me to Scriven's grave.

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Thursday, June 11, 2009

Oh Canada

To all of my friends in Canada, I am headed your way. I will preaching a youth conference in Peterborough, Ontario Friday and Saturday. I am looking forward to being in Ontario. Toronto is one of the great cities of North America. I have so many fond memories of Ontario. When I evangelized I spent about 2 months in that beautiful province. Send some prayers up for the meeting this week.

TRC I will be back Sunday Night....let's have some church!

See ya in a minute!

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Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Boss's Big Day!

I had no idea how emotional I would be when I watched my son walk down the aisle of Memorial Auditorium last week.  Standing an inch taller than me in his blue robe with that silly grin on his face, he brought tears to my eyes.  It is hard to believe that Boston is now graduated from High School.  I watched with bitter sweet emotions as his mother helped him sign up for his first college classes.  It seemed like only yesterday I could hold him in my arms and rock him to sleep. I am sure he will think this is totally uncool if he happens to read this...but what kid goes to their old man's blog anyway! lol ...  

I have to say that I am proud of him.  He applied himself and finished a year early. It was a tough up hill battle for him but he did it and so I am a very proud father today.  I want to follow the example of my heavenly Father and say..."this is my beloved son, in whom I am well pleased".

Fathers, are you encouraging your children.  There will be enough times that you have to rebuke, correct or advise your children so take advantage of the times that they accomplish to speak honor to them.  The Father spoke from heaven at the baptism of Jesus.  Before he began his earthly ministry he needed to hear the support from the Father.

We only have one life, and just a few short years with sons and daughters in the home before they launch out into the wild blue yonder, so, love em' while you can.  Let them hear how proud of them you are.  Sure they don't do everything right....but....uhhh....NEITHER DO WE!  So grab that son in a bear hug and say I love you and I am proud to be your dad.

Boston, I love you and I will always be there for you.



19 years ago, yesterday, I married the most beautiful woman on planet earth.  Sheila, I love you with all my heart and I am looking forward to the next 20+!  You are still my best friend and my help-meet.  I LOVE YOU WITH ALL MY HEART!


Monday, June 8, 2009

On January 4 we started revival here at TRC with evangelist Cody Marks. It has been a tremendous spiritual journey for all of us.  Close to 200 people have received the Holy Ghost and over 120 have been baptized in the name of Jesus Christ.  The Marks family are great people and we are so thankful for their ministry over the last 5 months.  I personally believe that we will look back in years to come come at this revival as a landmark time for TRC.  We will be praying for the Marks family as they continue to bless the body of Christ throughout the United States and beyond.

Oh, by the way....we will still get to see them on a regular basis!  They bought a beautiful new home here in Elk Grove.  Cody, Amanda, Caden, Kye, Addy we love you sooo much!

And we didn't even have to say good-bye!
Isn't God great!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Hey everybody! It has been a crazy last few weeks of ministry, life, graduations and travel.  Maybe as summer hits life will resemble some form of normalcy.  One of the things we have been working on here at TRC is our website.  Today we launched a shiny new website.  If you have never stopped by 'therockchurch.org'  or if it has been a while then take a moment and click in.  We have developed a whole new team of web-site ministry so stay in touch for new things in the future.  I am excited!  TRC loves you and wants to do everything we can to "help you become".