Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Inspiration Thursday - Thank You Lord

As I look around this troubled world in which I live, I can only say, "Thank you Lord for the life that you have given to me.  Even though I am nearing the end of my sixth decade on this planet, and some things don't work as well as they used to, still, my life is blessed.  Yes, I have a pacemaker.  Yes, I have two bad knees and replacement surgery is probably in my future.  Yes, I have a couple of other medical issues that require monitoring, but I have access to adequate medical care.  I can do most anything that I want, deep knee bends excluded, but who really wants to do those anyway?  All in all, my health is good, not perfect, but good.
I live in the greatest country in the world!  I have freedoms that other people from other nations only dream about.  I may not like what my government is doing on any given issue and I may not like the choice that the people have made regarding some of our elected officials.  Still, the democratic republic that our forefathers established and the Creator of the universe has blessed, is the greatest nation in the history of the world and I am ever thankful to be a native born citizen of the United States of America.
As a citizen of this great nation, I am most thankful for our freedom of religion.  It is that freedom that is most responsible for the greatness of this country.  I am thankful for it because it is through the freedom to preach and teach the message of the Gospel that I came to know about Jesus Christ and my need for a savior.  When my time on this earth is over I will move from the greatest nation on the planet, to the greatest home ever created.  Christ has prepared a place for me in heaven so that I might live forever and worship Him.  As good as this life has been, it does not compare to an eternity without tears, without pain, without suffering of any kind.  Thank you Lord for this life and the one that I will experience some day.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Ruby Tuesday Too

Saturday Morning I got up early and headed into Rogers, AR for the car show portion of their Frisco Festival.  The city of Rogers is named after the vice president of the Frisco Railroad at the time of it's founding.  My dad worked for the Frisco for 42 years, so there is a bit of a connection for me. 

This little red & whithe Austin Heally 3000 caught my eye.  A friend of mine owned one when we were both much younger and actually able to enter and exit the car without making more creaking sounds than the automobile.  Getting down is easy.  Getting back up is another story.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Skywatch Friday - From the Balcony

If you find yourself fortunate enough to take a cruise, get a room with a private balcony.  There is nothing quite like the fresh breeze that comes off of the water and, if you have your camera, the photo opportunties are endless.

Inspiration Thursday - Wayfaring Stranger

The dictionary defines "wayfarer" as someone who travels from place to place, usually by walking.  While we utilize planes, trains, and automobiles to do much of our traveling today, we still spend a great deal of time placing one foot in front of the other, in order to get around the office, the house, etc.  To most of us the word wayfarer implies wandering aimlessly, without clear direction.  The dictionary doesn't really place the word in that context.  It simply states that the method of wayfaring is usually by walking.  Walking is an ideal methond of travel.  It doesn't cost anything.  It provides us with much needed exercise and it give us the opportunity to truly stop and explore the world around us.
All of us are wayfarers in this life and this life that we live on planet earth is but a milisecond in eternity.  As I walk through this life I have to ask, "Where am I headed?"  "What is at the end of this road that we call life?"  The day that I draw my last breath on this earth I will begin a new adventure that I have spent far to little of my life preparing for.  The instant that I step into eternity I will spend it with the Creator of the universe.  I am not going there because I am a good person, nor because I believe that everyone goes to heaven, because they don't.  I will spend eternity in a place prepared for me by Christ himself because I have admitted that my life is filled with sinful behavior, I believe that Christ is indeed the only Son of the true living God, and I believe that Jesus died on a cross to pay the debt for my sins.  I can never do enough to repay Him for what He has done for me.  Thankfully, I don't have to.
The Bible tells me that this earth is not my home.  My home is with my Lord.  Until the day that the Creator calls me home, I am here as a "Wayfaring Stranger."

Monday, August 18, 2014

Ruby Tuesday - Branson, Missouri 2014

I know, there is no ruby red in this image.  Bear with me, we'll get to some red along the way.  Each year our family spends a few days in Branson, Missouri.  Branson is definitely a tourist town, but that's okay, we can choose to be tourists or not.  Branson sits at the west end of Table Rock Lake and Lake Taneycomo runs through town, so swimming, fishing, water skiing etc. is available to everyone.  Branson is also home to a multitude of entertainment theaters that feature shows of all kinds, from country music to magic, to the acrobats of China.  Of course there is a major outlet mall in Branson and a newer shopping/dining district on the waterfront to satisfy the "shop til you drop" crowd.  Just out side of town, on the lake, is world famous Big Cedar Lodge.  You really need to check that place out.  Last but not least, there is Silver Dollar City, the Disney World of the heartland. 
The past three years our family has rented a condo outside of town and sitting on the shores of Table Rock Lake.  I would take my bass boat and rent a slip in the marina.  Everything was very convenient and the grand crew LOVED the place.  This year we decided to stay closer to town and do the tourist thing.  We haven't done that in years.


Our first day started off at White Water, which is a large water park.  We rode several of the slides, floated down the Lazy River, and enjoyed the Wave Pool.  A couple of us also got just a touch too much sun.  The weather was perfect and the crowds were smaller than normal, because Missouri started back to school that day.  The photo above was taken the next morning, before the park opened so there was NO crowd.


The next day found my wife and I, with the youngest grand daughter riding the iconic "Ducks".  The ducks are amphibious vehicles that transport you from Branson to Table Rock Lake for a brief spin around an island and then back on shore for the return trip into town.  The original ducks were WWII surplus vehicles.  They have all been replaced with newer commercial models.  This ride has been in Branson since the late 60's and I had never ridden it before now.  What we won't do for our grand kids.  The Ducks are definitely a "Branson Thing."

Next up was the Hollywood Wax Museum.  Here the middle grand daughter and the grandson join the "Men in Black" for a photo op.  Some of the pieces were very good.  I'll post a few for Wordless Wednesday tomorrow.


 The middle grand daughter is second cart from the front, and there is enough red here to qualify for a Ruby Tuesday.  WoooHoooo!!!!!
Our final night found us up on the entertainment strip at one of the amusement parks.  Video games and go karts were the source of fun on this night.  All in all, it was a great vacation.  So what will we do next year?  We're going back to the lake and leave the town to the tourists!  "The Branson Thing", been there, done that!