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Showing posts from November, 2008

Nobel Peace Prize for Pete Seeger . . .

Editorial addition . . . 12/1/08) . . . I have a great respect for the musical efforts of Pete Seeger since I first became aware of him in the late 1960's and early 1970's. I do not agree with all the causes and stands Pete has taken over the years. I have, however, been drawn to his music, simple as it is, and his style of performing which invites the audience to participate in the concert. Other favorite artists of mine, Harry Chapin, John Denver; Peter, Paul and Mary, Arlo Guthrie . . . did the same thing. All shared in many different ways how Pete Seeger was an influence to them.

I guess I am drawn to stuff like that.  Seems a lot of folk singers in the past not only sang for people, but also sang with people.

Singing, for me, is a way of getting different people who believe different things to all come to the same table . . . for while singing around that table, different people (in my humble experience) become family together. Becoming family (again, in my humble experie…

In Memory - Jewel Brown-Sharpe . . .

Yesterday, Tuesday, November 25, 2008, around noon-time, my dear maternal grandmother, Mrs. Jewel Brown-Sharp, passed away at Scott and White Hospital in Temple, Texas. She was 93 years old.

For a few moments yesterday . . . the music that is always in my heart and life . . . stopped.

My mother, my uncle, along with my eldest daughter and her husband, and I were having lunch down the street from the hospital. My daughter and I sensed that my mom, an only child, was a little "tired" and we had driven down to be with her, and to visit "Granny", who had been mercifully sedated by her doctors following two heart attacks over a 3 day period. When we arrived at the hospital, my grandmother, as we were told, had just died only a few minutes before. The hospital staff so tenderly prepared her for viewing by the family, and my mom received many hugs and condolescenses from hospital staff.

We are all so grateful that her recent physical and mental sufferings are now over. Grann…

Sniff, sniff . . . ah chooooooo!

For the record . . . I do not like or enjoy allergies.  
The same time every year, right before Thanksgiving . . . my allergies blow up like a Oklahoma farm house hit by a tornado.
I don't like the way I feel with the allergies.
I don't like the way I feel taking medication for the allergies.
What I "most" do not like . . . is how it affects my voice.  Singing for the children's time tomorrow will be difficult.
If I am not singing or whistling . . . I am sick.
Ever forward . . . ><>

I can't help falling in love with you . . .

One of the highlights of my year is to present my pastor's report at our annual Charge Conference.

Seriously.

The reason I enjoy it is that I usually sing a song as part of, or as all of my report, inviting those in attendance to sing with me.

Truly, more so than any other activity, when we sing together we are family . . . one big happy family.

At least, that is my experience and perception of what happens when we sing together.

Guess Pete Seeger had more influence on my life than I thought.

I shared that I wanted to sing a song that put into perspective what I hope people of our community hear when we live with, witness, share and help on a daily basis.

The song I chose to sing . . . I Can"t Help Falling in Love With You!

Wise men say, only fools rush in
But I can't help falling in love with you

Shall I stay, would it be a sin
If I can't help falling in love with you

Like a river flows, surely to the
Darling so it goes, some things are meant to be

Take my hand, take my whol…

The Red Marble . . .

One of my fishing buddies, Ned Conner, sent me this story. I do not know the author's name. If you know who wrote the following, then please let me know so I can give appropriate credit.

Yeah, yeah, I know . . . I am a sucker for a good story or song that tugs on my heart.

After reading this story, I thought how true last line of the chorus is a from the Randy Travis song, 3 Wooden Crosses. "It's not what you take, when you leave this world behind you . . . It's what you leave behind you when you go."

I was at the corner grocery store buying some early potatoes. I noticed a small boy, delicate of bone and feature, ragged but clean,hungrily apprizing a basket of freshly picked green peas.

I paid for my potatoes, but was also drawn to the display of fresh greenpeas. I am a pushover for creamed peas and new potatoes. Pondering the peas, I couldn't help overhearing the conversation between Mr. Miller (the storeowner) and the ragged boy next to me.

'Hello Barry, h…

Is the "Religious Right" dead? . . .

My friend, Floyd, sent me the link to a recent article by columnist Cal Thomas.

Floyd is a good friend.

In the past few years . . . I have moved away from the conservative side of faith and politics. I have not gone to the left, but rather find myself in the gray area between the left and the right.

I guess by some people's definition, that makes me a moderate, or "centrist."  I like that term better than moderate. Call me whatever . . . just listen to what I have to say first.

I have used a joke a time or two about religion and politics . . . it goes something like this:

I want to start a new political party . . . the "something has to change" party.
I want to start a new church . . . the "something has to change" church.

Funny thing . . . the other day at IHOP in Euless (my favorite IHOP in the whole entire world), I was sharing the joke with the waitress (my wife and I know all of them by name . . . we go to tthe Euless IHOP a lot) about starting the &quo…

More thoughts on the ESV Study Bible . . .

Well, I have had my ESV Study Bible for almost a month. Except for the words of Christ being in black (and yes, I know that most all scholarly study bibles do not put the words of Christ in red) . . . I find that I am becoming more and more pleased.

The ESV translation . . . if I can put this is a politically correct way . . . and can borrow the words of my friend, Floyd . . . is what I would have hope the NRSV could have been. It reads very well . . . actually, it flows so well that I enjoy reading it out loud. I have decided to make this the translation I use for personal reading and teaching through the end of 2009.

The ESVSB is set in a single column format . . . something I appreciate. I still have my old Harper's Study Bible (RSV) from my college years . . . it was a single column format . . . with headings and good notes. I have used the Life Application Bibles for some time because they also were single column formats. It is just easier on my eyes.

As for the ESVSB notes . . …

Check out Pandora.com

For those of you who have not yet purchased an iPod type music player . . .

And, that may just be me for all I know . . .

Check out Pandora Internet Radio. No commercials, and just the artists you want.

I have set up about 25 stations . . . from southern rock-n-roll to the cool Joan Baez tunes I am listening to as I type this.

I am a happy man.

Yes, I will own an iPod sometime in the near future . . . because I can no longer stand AM / FM stations on the radio . . . and I am too cheap (or a good steward of my resources) to purchase a satelilite radio.

But until then, Pandora is the music source for me.

Check it out!

Ever forward . . . ><>

An after-election reflection . . .

Some good words from author John Mason concerning the recent election, and the future that each of us chooses daily to live out.

I offer for your consideration . . .

Ever forward . . . ><>

America has selected its next President. And whether or not you may agree or disagree with this selection, we definitely should note the significance of an African-American elected to the highest office in the world. We have come far as a nation.

Many people on election night, as all election nights in the past, felt overwhelming joy or sadness in the result. But to those of you who voted, I commend you for taking action.

In this time of economic uncertainty and with election results that may not be what you desired, it is easy to feel powerless. And what I have found in most situations is that people tend to quit at two significant times in their lives. After a victory and after a defeat. But now is not a time to shrink away and let outside influences take over. It's a time to, now more …