Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Marriage Proposals

There is an engineer where I work that shared an interesting story about how she and her husband met and got engaged. This is the second marriage for both of them.
She’s from Kentucky, so it is rather entertaining to listen to her talk. (I told her it is hard to believe that she’s from Kentucky since she still has all of her teeth).

They had dated for a number of years. He was a contractor and she was an engineer for the state. On her way to work one morning, as usual, she stopped by the jobsite to see him. Their conversation that morning went something like this…..
(him = DS, her = J)
DS: “We’ve been together for a long time, haven’t we?”
J: “Yes DS, we have.”
DS: “And we’re pretty good together, aren’t we?”
J: “Yes, we are.”
DS: “And you know I love you, right?”
J: “Yes, I know you love me.”
DS: “And I know you love me too, right?”
J: “Yes, you know I love you.”
DS: “So I was thinking, maybe you and I should get married.”
J: “I think that’s a great idea.”

At this point, DS hands her his checkbook and tells her to go to the jewelry store across the street and pick out whatever ring she likes……

J (in total disbelief): “I can’t pick out my own ring!”
DS: “But I want you to be happy with it and I don’t know what kind of ring you would like.”
J: “I’m sure whatever you choose will be just fine.”
DS: “But…. “

The look on her face clearly said, “Are you freaking kidding me?!?”

She shoved that checkbook back at DS (more like hit him with it), then stormed off and went to work.

Nearing the end of her day, he called and asked her to stop by the jobsite on her way home from work. So she did.

DS handed her a small box (from the jewelry store across the street) and she opened it.

J: “This is very pretty. What is it for?”
DS: “It’s for you!”
J: “How nice. What’s the occasion?.”
DS: “It’s an engagement ring!”
J: “Oh. Really?”

After a long pause…….

DS: “Well?”
J: “Well what?”
DS: “Are you going to marry me or not?”
J: “No.”
DS: “Why not??”
J: “Because you have not properly asked me.”
DS: “Oh, good grief……”
He got down on one knee and proposed.
She accepted and they were married two months later in a park surrounded by family and friends in a small ceremony that had about as much romantic appeal as the proposal. But the flowers were pretty, she said.
That was over seven years ago and they are very happily married.

Well, I have finally met my very best friend. I have no idea yet as to how to propose, but I will.  What I do know is that the marriage relationship itself is so much more important than the proposal, or even the type wedding.  I am convinced that if both people spend their time putting the needs of the other person first, then that marriage will last a lifetime.  (Phillipians 2:3)  And because of the kind of person she is, serving her and honoring her is really easy, and enjoyable.


Wednesday, January 23, 2008

In God We Trust

Have you received one of those e-mails yet? You know, the panicky one that says “New Dollar Coin Omits 'In God We Trust’ ”. The e-mail explains how the US Mint has redesigned the one dollar coin and that “It does not have In God We Trust on it. Another way of leaving God out.”

Really? I’m not sure who started this nonsense, but not many people took the time to look on the side of the coin.

Can you see that?

Everything that used to be on the face of the coin is now imprinted on the side. A news article said that a certain number of coins had initially been distributed without anything imprinted on the side. But the error was caught and corrected.

But still, what is all the fuss about?

When I pointed out, to friends and family who had sent me that panicky e-mail, that “In God We Trust” is now imprinted on the side and to please check the story out before sending me panicky e-mails, they said “Don’t you see? They’re trying to remove God from everything. They’ve taken him off the face of the coin. What will be next? We have to do something!!”

It seems to me they are still caught up in the panic. But why?

I think it is because people tend to allow themselves to get caught up in things that don’t really matter all that much. At least it is better than replacing it with this…

don’t you think?

It may hit a little closer to home for a lot of people.
We could spend a lot of time talking about this one, but I’ll save that for another time and get back to the subject at hand.

“In God We Trust” has been imprinted on the face of American currency since 1938. That means it wasn’t on there before then. I wonder what those panicky people had to fuss about before 1938?

I honestly don’t know, but I can give you some pretty good ideas….

Consider those guys who tried to trick Jesus in Luke, Chapter 20, verses 20 through 26. They were asking him about paying taxes to Caesar. Jesus asked them to show him a denarius (not much different than today’s dollar coin) and then asked what was on it.

It had a portrait and inscription of Caesar, so Jesus told them

“…give to Caesar what is Caesar's, and to God what is God's."

You can bet that the coin did not say “In God We Trust”. But…..Jesus’ life DID!

Jesus provided us with an example of how to live our lives and how to treat other people (“…love you neighbor as yourself…”).

I don’t really think God cares a whole lot about what is or is not written on our money.

Think about it.

Prior to 1938, God’s name was not on our money. BUT…His name was in our schools, and in our government, and in our homes.

I don’t know about you, but I would much rather have “In God We Trust” written in my life, for everyone to see, rather than on my money.

After all, how many people do you know that were led into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ because of what they saw written on a dollar coin?

Whether you realize it or not, there are people in your town, in your neighborhood, perhaps next door to you, that are going to hell. But not because of what may or may not be imprinted on their new one dollar coin (which hardly anyone will actually use anyway), but because they don't know about Jesus!

Get it?

Remember, when God wants to reach people, He uses……people. And God wants people to know and follow His Son. God is way more interested in your heart, than He is about your money (it’s His money anyway, not yours).

Jesus said, “….give to Caesar what is Caesar's, and to God what is God's."

So…..what’s written on your heart?


Saturday, January 19, 2008

Only because this looked like fun…….

I normally don’t do this sort of stuff. But….I saw this over at EE’s at Life Unscripted and I caught myself answering the questions myself.

Besides, I know you are all wanting to know more about me……….

1. If you had to kiss the last person you kissed again, would you?

Oh yes. My Catherine has GREAT lips!

2. Do you take compliments well?
I’m getting better. Go ahead……try me!

3. Do you play Sudoku?
No. I don’t even know what it is.

4. If abandoned alone in the wilderness would you survive?
Absolutely. (What a sec….alone?)

5. If your house were on fire, what would be the first thing you would save?
My family.

6. Who was the last person you slept in the bed with?
The only person I ever share a bed with. My wife.

7. Who do you text the most?
I normally don’t, but most likely…Catherine.

8. Favorite children’s book?
Curious George.

9. How tall are you?
I’m not. I’m 5’-7”, but I try to stand up straight and I’m working on my self-confidence.

10. Favorite ex?
Yeah, right.

11. Where was the furthest place you traveled?

12. Do you prefer to sleep or eat?

13. Can you do splits?
Not anymore, but I used to.

14. What movie do you want to see right now?
Dan in Real Life (Steve Carrol).

15. What are you going to do for New Year’s Eve?
We went to dinner, watched a movie, watched the ball drop in NY on TV, drank Welches Grape Sparkling cider, went to bed.

16. Are you a cheerleader?
Are you kidding? I am the Alpha Dude!

17. What’s the last letter of your middle name?

18. Do you like care bears?
You’re joking, right?

19. What do you eat at the movies?

20. Do you know how to play poker?
Yep. That doesn’t mean I’m any good at it though.

21. Do you wear your seatbelt?
Always. Ever since this day.

22. What do you wear to sleep?
That’s classified.

23. Is your hair straight or curly?

24. Is your tongue pierced?
No. I still have a brain.

25. Do you like funny or serious people better?
Depends on the circumstance. But if someone doesn’t have a sense of humor, we probably won’t get along very well.

26. Ever been to L.A.?
Yes...I lived and worked there for several years.

27.Any plans 4 tonight?
Sleeping (after church, not during).

28. What's your fav. song at the moment?
Cartoon song by Chris Rice.

29. Are you a gullible person?
Why? What are you selling?

30. If you could have any job what would it be?
Stand Up Comic. Or a Pastor. (Maybe both?)

30. Are you easy to get along with?
Most of the time.

31. What is your favorite time of day?
Early morning, before anyone else is up.

32. Are you generally a happy person?
Most of the time.

Okay…..your turn.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Mental Meanderings of an Old Man….

I had been meaning to write about this guy for some time now. I’m not sure how he found my blog, but I am really glad he did. He left some nice comments and I, in turn, visited his blog.
The title of his blog is the same as the title of this post, Mental Meanderings Of An Old Man.

The fellow’s name is Dave G Dimelow, and he lived in Manchester, Northwest, United Kingdom. When I got there, I found that he had added me to his blogroll. Now, when Dave G adds someone to his blogroll, he doesn’t just place you in the blogger template so your name appears as a link on your sidebar, he creates a banner representing you and your blog. It appears that he tries to capture a bit of your personality as well. This makes me believe that Dave spent some time reading my blog and doing his best to get to know me a little bit before creating this banner……..

Here’s what Dave had to say when he first posted this banner/icon.
“I like this guy, he is simply a nice chap, entertaining too.”

(Thanks, Dave)

I meant to try to express my appreciation in some way earlier, but I just never seemed to get around to it (a lame excuse, I know, but it is the only one I’ve got). I would stop by Dave’s blog once in a while, looking for something new to read, and perhaps leave a comment or two, but like most bloggers, not seeing anything new, I moved on quickly without saying a word.

Then, the other day I stopped by and noticed Dave hadn’t posted anything new for a long, long time. I decided to leave a comment on his last post, wishing him well. I knew he hadn't been feeling well in the past, but he had said in one of his latest posts that he was doing much better now. When I scrolled through the comments that had been left there by others, I found this one from his daughter…..

It is with much sad regret that I have to post this comment.

Dave Dimelow sadly passed away on the 9th of November 2007 after a serious illness.
His eldest daughter
Sue x

I don’t know anymore about it than that. I was looking forward to getting to know Dave a little better over time. Even though he’s gone, his blog is still there. He has a good sense of humor and has an interesting way of telling his stories. A good read if you have the time.

I know I haven’t been posting as often as I used to. Even though there is much to write about, I have allowed myself to be involved in other things. I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you for everyone who stops by now and then, and to those who offer words of encouragement. Thank you for checking up on me.

You never really know sometimes, why someone stops blogging for a while. They could be ill, depressed or just plain busy. For those of you who stop by regularly and leave comments, thank you. I am honored that you take the time to think of me once in a while.
For the rest of you…….stay tuned. There is much more to come.

I have said this before and I will say it again…..
You may never fully realize what a tremendous impact you may have on someone else’s life (good or bad) by the little things you do every day.

I am going to try to put more effort into letting people know how much I care about them by simply saying hello and letting them know they are being thought of today.

How about you?


Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Pardon My French…..

Interesting thing to say, isn’t it?

I heard that phrase in a meeting today.
“Pardon my French, but….#@!! $%!#*.”

I wonder why people say that. Does that imply that the French swear a lot? I can’t recall the French being known for their fowl language so much as for their cowardliness.

It seems I hear quite often that someone will say “Pardon my French” right before they say a swear word or two.

The Bible says that we are to be mindful of the words we use, and that we are to exercise self-control. So it seems to me that if you have given enough thought to what you would like to say in that you take the time to exclaim “Pardon my French”, that you could take an extra second or two and think of better words to use than something vulgar or offensive. Don’t you think?

Given the nature of the French government towards America’s war on terror and their willingness (or UN-willingness) to rise to the defense of those who could not defend themselves from tyrants, perhaps it would be more appropriate to say “Pardon my French” right before you try to avoid conflict, or get out of helping someone out of a jam.

Or, you could just turn tail and run away.

What do you think?

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Another Christmas Gone!

And I am so thankful.

I mean, Christmastime always made me a little nervous. Over the many years, I have come to learn what Christmas is really all about. It is about celebrating the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is also a season of giving. And, as a kid, it was the giving that bothered me.

When I was a kid, there were no i-pods, or game-boys or any other types of video games. The types of gifts we got were those paddle ball games. Remember them? It was a small wooden paddle with a red rubber ball attached to a rubber string that was stapled to the paddle. I imagine we looked pretty goofy trying bounce that ball off that paddle. Well, once the string broke (and we never did find that stupid ball), Mom would write our name on the paddle and hang it on a hook in the kitchen. Yeah, we each had our own personal paddle, so whenever we got a spanking, we got spanked with our very own personalized paddle.

Not that I was a bad kid or anything, but the strangest thing I ever got spank with was…”Hot Wheels” tracks. Yep, momma raised a few speed bumps on my backside.
She must have smacked me hard one time, because one day, all of a sudden, it occurred to me…”Dude……you’re being spanked……. With your own toys!”

My life changed after that. Each Christmas, Sears would put out a catalog called the “Christmas Wish Book”. Mom would pass it around to each of us kids and we were to circle the items on our “Wish List” with a pen and dog-ear that page. I started circling things like socks, or underwear. One year, I even circled a pair of Bermuda shorts! (Yes, it was a long time ago).

Mom insisted I chose some toys, but I told her, “No, thank you. I don’t want anything. I don’t even need the socks. I’m fine. Really!

My parents were so proud. They thought that I had figured out the true meaning of Christmas and that I was becoming “spiritual”. Little did they know that it had more to do with self-preservation that anything else.

(I am so glad I never got that wood-burning kit I wanted!)

But, that was then, and this is now (which was also my favorite book in Junior High).

Now I have other reasons for dreading Christmas. Don’t get me wrong. My favorite time of the year is standing at our big picture window, next to our decorated Christmas Tree, watching the snow fall in our front yard while sipping a cup of hot chocolate.

I just get tired of all of the commercialism and greediness that comes along with the season.

I also don’t care much for hearing the tone of my daughter’s voice on the phone which tells me she is saddened that she didn’t get anything from her daddy at Christmas. Oh, I sent her some gifts. I made sure they were there before Christmas so she’d have them Christmas morning, but her mother said my package didn’t arrive. Strange that had a delivery confirmation from the post office proving that the package DID arrive on time. I guess it suffered the same fate as all those cards and letters I sent her, and the telephone messages that “disappeared” from their answering machine.

I really wanted her to be able to open her gifts on Christmas morning since I designed them myself. You can see them here.

I still don’t know if she’s received anything yet. I haven’t been able to get her on the phone. Her mother is doing all she can to kill our relationship, and it is killing me.

I have high hopes for 2008. It is starting out a little rough, but I know God loves me and will take care of me. He is in control, so I'll keep on trusting in Him.

I sat down tonight on the couch to eat my dinner (Catherine makes a great salad and baked potato) and I turned on the TV. There was old episode of “Reba” on. It was the one about when her youngest daughter wanted to move out of the house and Reba prayed. “God, please don’t let me lose my daughter”.

Yeah, I know exactly how she feels.

I don’t normally tear up over a sitcom, but that one got me.

I think the best Birthday Present we could give Jesus each Christmas would be if we could all just get along and show Christ’s love for each other, even when we don’t want to.

What do you think?