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Category Archives: Laughter

“Let’s Do Something Crazy”

I have some pretty incredible grandkids, nine of them as of now. (the number will be 10 in a few weeks!) They’re all amazingly unique in their own ways. I had no idea, going in, that being a grandparent would have so many blessings attached to it. It has been a source of great joy for Julie and me for, now going on 19 years. I was talking to a friend about how much we enjoyed grandparenting and he gave the usual reply, “Yeah, you can spoil your grandkids and send ’em home”. I said, “Not us; we spoil ’em and keep ’em there”! Pretty much sums it up. We’re extremely blessed in that of the 9 grandkids we have, all but one little girl (2 hrs away), lives within five miles of us!

Our newest grandchild is Timber. She’s something! She’s about to turn 3 and like all the rest she’s been an unbelievable blessing. Clay and Chelsea are great as first-time parents. A few days ago they were at our house and Timber was playing around and just doing her thing. She ran from the kitchen into the living room full of excitement and said to Clay, “Dad, let’s do something crazy!” Without hesitation, Clay jumped up, grabbed Timber and threw her into the air….her little head nearly touching the ceiling. She cackled and said, “Let’s do it again!” And they did; but, this time he threw her up and spun her around in a 360* and caught her again at the same time. “Do it again, Dad!” This time he grabbed her by her little legs, held her upside down and flipped her up in the air and, just like clockwork, caught her again. She was laughing almost uncontrollably throughout the whole process. I guess it would’ve gone on all evening if Dad hadn’t given out.

Little kids have an incredible level of trust in their parents. We love to stand them up on the table and then tell them to ‘jump’ to us. They’ll do it every time! Why? ……’cause they trust us. They know we’d never let them fall. Wouldn’t it be something if we had that level and depth of trust with our Father!? I think it’s something we should shoot for!

Can’t you imagine how excited God might be if you woke up tomorrow and said to Him, “Let’s do something crazy!!”

 

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You Oughta See Us When We Ain’t Winnin’!

It was back in the late ’70s, during my rodeo days.  We had driven all night the night before from Montgomery, Alabama with very little sleep. Only what little you could get in the back, or front, seat of a car with four others packed in there too. We had finished riding on this particular night in the rodeo in San Angelo, Texas. It was around midnight and we pulled into an all-night convenience store to get stocked up for another all-nighter to Phoenix. We dropped off one guy so there’d only be four of us for this trip. One less driver….but more room to sleep!

We made our trip around the c-store and brought all our stuff and put it on the counter to check out. Out there on the counter were big bags of potato chips, Doritos, pork skins, Cheetos, Louisiana Hot Sauce, Slim-Jims, Fritos, bean dip, beef jerky, peanuts, a few candy bars………oh, and a case of beer. The night manager, a gentleman in his 40’s, looked over all the items we put on the counter, shook his head back and forth a few times, ….looked me square in the eye and said, in an extremely serious tone, “How in the hell do you guys live??!!” …..To which I quickly replied, “Heck, that ain’t nothin’, you oughta see us when we ain’t winnin’!”

True Story!

 

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Sacrifice Cats? Why, Yes…..Yes We Do!

When we started Trinity Fellowship back in 1989 there were less than ten of us. We didn’t know much but we were sure we’d heard the Lord. Those early years were extremely challenging (as have been the rest of ’em! lol), but really rewarding too. Looking back, those were some great years. The little group of people we started with were growing in the Lord….and we were growing in how to lead them. We were literally in the ‘school of the Spirit’! Being the only non-denominational church in town we had to grow through what I call, “the snake handlers syndrome”. Because you’re different there’s a lot of talk….and much of it was negative talk. They don’t know what you’re doing….but because it’s different it has to be wrong. We were looked down on by the other leaders and churches in town and often ignored, made fun of and treated with disrespect. That all served to make us that much more determined to hear the Lord and be obedient to what we believed He was saying to us.

One particular case in point was when one of the ladies in our group came to me somewhat distressed. She said that another person asked her at the beauty shop if it was true that we sacrificed cats, …….if you can believe that! I asked the lady from our group what she told them, to which she replied, “I told her….NO! ….absolutely not!!” I said, “Well, you go right back down there and tell ‘em that we do sacrifice cats!” She had a surprised and puzzled look on her face. I said, “But be sure and tell ‘em there’s nothing religious about it……we just don’t like cats!” I don’t think she told ‘em!! LOL, I do think we had quite a few visitors who came just out of curiosity!

But, seriously, there’s not one thing that cleanses a feller’s soul quite like a good ‘ol cat sacrificin’!

*(Easy cat lovers….I’m just kidding!)

More humor:

“It’ll Ride”

Them Swallows Can’t Return to Capistrano Soon Enough For Me!

Just Some Friendly Advice: Always Approach a Possum With Extreme Caution!!

 

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“Are We There Yet?”

If you’re a parent you’ve heard that question more than a few times. In fact it could happen on just about any trip. Doesn’t matter if it’s a short trip or a long one you’re apt to hear it. We had five kids so you can imagine how many times we heard, “Are we there yet?”, in their younger years. Little kids don’t really have much concept of time and distance. If they’re in the car and you drive a few miles they immediately start wondering why we’re not already there.

Our Christian walk of faith is kinda like that too. We go a ways, encounter a mess of trials tribulations, overcome one thing after another, win a few, lose a few, slowly but gradually get better…..and you’d think we oughta be there. Our life is an incredible ‘road trip’ if you can think about it that way. We may not express it to the Lord exactly like our kids do on a trip, but you gotta admit….we’re thinkin’ it! “Are we there yet?” I bet the Lord gets a kick out of our impatience at times. But in the long haul we’re like our kids; as we mature we begin to realize it’s not a quick trip. It takes a while to get ‘there’

Spiritual maturity is not an elusive thing at all. It’s attainable alright,……it just takes awhile. We’re on our way there now. But we might as well just settle in and realize it’s a lifelong endeavor. It takes a long, long time for people like us to get conformed into the image of Jesus. When I look at my own life I can tell I’m more like Him than I was….but in all reality I’ve got a long way to go.

It’s an incredible trip we’re on; not a short one by any means, more like a marathon. and when we wonder, “Are we there yet?”, we might need to remind ourselves; no, we’re not there yet……but we’re closer than we were!

Here’s a few you might like too:

 

Dysfunction Junction

“You Are Here”

Livin’ It Up

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Anti-Social Media

Social media; That’s a term that hasn’t been around forever. My, totally uneducated,  guess is that it started being used somewhere around year 2000. And, now you can’t go a single day without hearing it. I did read today that FaceBook now has one billion, seven hundred million users….and growing by the second! Twitter has over three hundred million and Snapchat currently has over two hundred million users. So, when you consider those staggering numbers, you’d have to surmise that the entire world is pretty much  ‘connected’!

President-Elect Donald Trump seems to be a prolific Twitter user. It’s a rare celebrity that doesn’t post a daily, if not several, ‘tweets’ a day. Facebook users post everything from where they are, what they’re doing to family pics, video clips of virtually every kind, recipes…and the list goes on and on. I like Facebook because it’s made it possible to reconnect with a lot of my friends from the past. It’s also a really good way to communicate important information in real time to the masses. As a church we use it for prayer concerns and notifying our people of events and information. All in all it can be a very good thing, even a valuable tool, if it’s used in a sensible, mature way.

Here’s something to keep in mind, too; one of the first thing employers are now doing when someone applies for a job with their company is to check their social media activity. I’m gonna say that there’s been thousands, so far, who’ve been disqualified for a job after having their social media investigated. Definitely something to think about.

But, there are a few folks that use Facebook and other social media sites to spew out negativity, profanity and drama of every kind. I’ve even seen a few who were threatening someone else with bodily harm. That’s crazy! So, here’s my idea; why doesn’t someone build a site that’s just for the negative stuff!  It could be exclusively devoted to ‘anti-social media’. You could call it Gripebook or you could get even more graphic with the site name, if you know what I mean. And, that way those folks who love to could rant and rave, cuss their ex, make fun of minorities, use foul language, show rude video clips and just anything else that suits their filthy fancy. Then the rest of us wouldn’t have to tolerate that kind of thing so much.

If we’re going to use these sites let’s try to keep it social…..and stay away from that anti-social malarkey!

Check these out:

“Known”

We’re on a ‘Need to Know’ Basis with the Lord!!

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Fail Forward

It doesn’t matter what you’re doing in life, missing the mark is always a possibility. In fact, it’s inevitable that we’re going to fail at something. Whether it’s not making the 5th-grade basketball team or coming up short for class president. Most of us experienced the heartbreak of not doing quite good enough early on in life. You know, if it’d just stop there it wouldn’t be too bad. We could surely overcome that class president thing and move on with life. But, challengingly enough, it doesn’t stop there.

Every single thing we do in life the possibility of failure is staring us square in the face. It can be distracting and downright intimidating. Get yourself two or three of those heartbreaks in a row, which is not hard, and it makes for a really tough patch of life. It would be easy for anyone to get stuck in that same old pattern and let it set the course of their entire life. It’s happened all too many times.

But it doesn’t have to happen that way. Actually, failure has some profound potential if we just don’t allow it to get the best of us. Failures provide some amazing learning opportunities and they can give us some incredible perspective if we’ll just let it.

Peter was one of those guys that failed. He didn’t just fail a little….he failed BIG! At the time Jesus needed him most he folded like a cheap lawn chair. Three times he denied that he even knew Jesus, once to a little 12 year old girl. You may have had some major blunders in your life but I’m bettin’ you haven’t had one that big. It would have been easy for that failure to define the rest of Peter’s life. But he had an encounter with Jesus after the resurrection and something miraculous happened; something so miraculous, in fact, that for the next 25 years he was the most important man of the planet as it related to the plan of God! That should be a source of great encouragement to people like us.

Failure is a strong word; and, just because you failed at something doesn’t mean you’re a failure! We shouldn’t allow our failures to define us. We should use them as a stepping stone to greatness. Learn your lesson, get back up and get going again, use your bad experience to help someone else. 

You’re gonna miss the mark; you’re gonna fall short, you’re gonna fail occasionally. But when you fail, …….fail forward! Failure is not final…..unless you let it be!

Oh, and don’t forget what really made the difference for Peter! That encounter with Jesus is the ‘clincher’!

It’ll work for you, too!

Here’s a couple more you might like:

Critics……..There’s One On Every Corner

“Nothing I Can Do About it Now”

 

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“It’ll Ride”

Famous last words from yours’ truly!! I’ve said those words many a time…only to find out that they, somehow, don’t always ring true. I’m a trusting kind of guy, you might say. When I load something on a vehicle it just seems like a waste of time to me to have to secure said items with a chain, rope or bungie cord……. Overkill, is what I’d call it.

One such example was after buying sixty chairs for the church some years ago. Our little group had grown from about ten people to somewhere in the neighborhood of fifty. We needed more room so we knocked a wall out and the chairs would be placed in the new space.

Julie and I went to Sam’s Club in Oklahoma City bought the chairs and loaded them in the back of my pickup. We laid the stacks of chairs on their sides and it was amazing how tight they stuck together. The pickup bed was completely full of brand new chairs. I took a good look at the load and it looked good to me. Julie said, “Don’t you think you should get a rope or something and tie them in?” She worries way too much so I double checked; “Nah, they’ll ride.”

We headed home and it was right square in the middle of rush hour traffic in OKC. But, no big deal. We eased our way out onto the interstate and everything’s fine……….for about two miles! The first chair that flew out the back of the pickup looked like it was spring-loaded and on steroids! It was bouncing three feet in the air….and then ten feet in the air. It hit no less than 3 cars, maybe 5, maybe more; I mean, hit ’em good! The second chair just kinda slid out the back into the bumper-to-bumper traffic….all of which are now maneuvering to give me all the room I need. It finally came to rest right in the middle of three lanes of traffic. I looked back and, I swear, it looked like the Red Sea was parting around that little chair. We’re still surrounded by cars and they’re all giving me that, “You stupid idiot”, look when we make eye contact. Interestingly enough, I look across the seat in the pickup….Julie’s giving me that exact same look! I won’t even get into the generous, heartfelt, animated encouragement that she was giving me at that point! *Just use your imagination!

Well, we made it to the next exit without losing any more chairs. (Thank ‘ya, Jesus!!) I went into the truck stop, bought me a few good rubber bungie cords, strapped them chairs down (strapped ’em down good!!).…and we made it all the way home without any more mishaps.

I wish I could say that this was just an isolated incident…but no such luck. Nope, it’s happened other times, too. I’ll tell you about some of those other times one of these days, soon.

So, just a little ‘heads up; if you’re ever around and you hear me say, “It’ll ride”, stand clear!! Anything could happen! 

P.S.-Don’t even ask Julie about this…….she still doesn’t like to talk about it!

Need another laugh? Click on these:

Avoid the Vending Machine, Microwave, Green Chile Burritos at the Albuquerque Airport  at All Costs!!

It Was A “Test” of Epic Proportions!

Just Some Friendly Advice: Always Approach a Possum With Extreme Caution!!

The Luge….Western Oklahoma Style!

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“Greatest Misses”

I’d love to have titled this one, “Greatest Hits”. But, as a rookie and aspiring writer, I doubt I’ve achieved that status yet. Maybe, someday! In the last year and a half I’ve written nearly three-hundred blogs. That’s not much writing for a ‘real’ writer but for a guy like me it’s fairly significant. I’m a ‘learner’; you’ve read that in my blogs more than a few times. I’ve learned a lot in this little stretch of time….and most of what I’ve learned are the things I’ve learned about myself. I have wanted to write things that would be helpful to others but found that some of those things have helped me, most of all. It just does something when you ‘write down’ your feelings and opinions. I highly recommend it for everyone, it’s therapeutic!

One of the things that’s been interesting are the blogs where I really thought I ‘nailed it’. I think,  as a writer, you kinda know if you got it done…..or not. But some of those that I thought I did my best work on at times happened to be ones that didn’t get read all that much. I get that. I’ve learned that people like stories. And, it’s a nice surprise when one just ‘takes off’ and gets read by three or four hundred people. Then there are a few that were just fun to write and still fun for me to read again. I’ve listed several of my “Greatest Misses” and if you have the time you might check ’em out. I’ve also included a few that still make me smile. Hope you enjoy ’em! If so, “Share” ’em with your people! Thanks for taking the time!

*Click on the highlighted link to read:

Identity Theft

Relational Equity

You Got To Me Too Late

If God Has Your Heart, He Can Get Your Feet Where They Belong!

Retaliate!!

Virtual Reality

Weapons of Mass Construction

God Is My Co-Pilot! ……and therein lies the problem!

That ain’t all the “Greatest Misses”! I’ve got a ton of ’em!

…….and just for fun:

You May Not Know This, But I’m Kind of a Big Deal!

Tee-Ball…..The #1, Undisputed, Very Best Team Sport of ‘Em All!!

There’s Just So Much of This Stuff in Life We’re Gonna Have to Learn the ‘Hard Way’!

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Have a Nice Day, Lord!

It’s been a real adventure raising 5 kids. We had Clint, our first, only a year into our marriage..and the parental learning process began. Parenting is one of the most challenging and rewarding things you’ll do in your life. We’ve enjoyed every minute of it even though there’s been plenty of things to work through with each of them. I will say, looking back, that the years of raising kids goes by incredibly fast.

We have thousands of great memories from those years. One of those memories is when we started praying before meals. We’d often take turns and let the kids if they were willing, pray a lot of the time. I’ll never forget how one of our boys, who was about three at the time, often prayed. I’d help him get started and then he’d take it from there. He had just a little lisp at the time and his prayer would go something like this: “God, Bleth Mom and Dad, Bleth my brotherth, bleth MeMaw and Papaw….and uh…..have a nithe day, God!” It was about the sweetest prayer you’ve ever heard. I can’t help but think the Lord, Himself, loved the prayer and especially the part where He was told to, “Have a nithe day.” He probably doesn’t hear that too often.

I was thinking about that recently and I made a little Top-10 list of the things that should help the Father to have a ‘nithe’ day: 

  1. Get to know Him….No, I mean, really get to know Him! *He wants to be relational with you. Interact, and relate to Him as Father!
  2. Receive His ‘gift’! *Salvation is free……Receive it!
  3. Find your place/Discover your destiny! *You’ve been gifted so you can be a functional contributor to the Body of Christ. Get in the process of finding out how you’re gifted!
  4. Gravitate into your ‘sonship’! *He has handpicked you to be His son/daughter. Make the most of it….and keep it simple!
  5. Be ‘who’ you are! *There’s no one like you. Don’t try to be anyone else!
  6. Use your faith! *Learn to be led by the Holy Spirit!
  7. Get along! *Be a peacemaker! Dad’s love it when their kids get along!
  8. Get back up! *Everybody gets knocked down….not everybody gets back up!
  9. Be a ‘learner’! *It’s a lifetime endeavor. Make every day a day to learn!
  10. Be ‘free’! Jesus died for us to be free; free from sin…free from the Law! Enjoy your freedom!

Don’t forget…..He’s already extremely proud of you and He wants to see you succeed in every area of your life! And, maybe sometime in your prayer time, you can even tell Him to “Have a nithe day”!

You might like these, too:

Good Ground Grows Good Weeds, Too!

What If It’s Not to ‘Break’ You,….but to ‘Make’ You?

 

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It’s All Good!

Here’s a catchy little Robert Zimmerman (more commonly known as Bob Dylan who turns 75 this week) tune that you might like titled, “It’s All Good”. (click here to listen) Not everyone likes Dylan (understandable, ….and you’re forgiven).…and hardly anyone likes him like I do but either way he’ll go down in music history as being the greatest poet/songwriter of our generation.

It’s all good! I like that phrase. I’ve already used it a time or two today. It’s ultra positive and anytime it’s spoken it gives everyone involved an upbeat feeling. It may not always be entirely a 100% accurate, which I think is still OK,  but it’s a perspective thing. It’s about making a positive declaration even when everything might not be exactly like you had hoped it would be. And, I think if we’re declaring that “It’s all good”, we might actually feel better about the things we’re having to deal with.

There’s just something about making a positive confession that’s good for the soul. It stirs optimism in our spirit, but that’s not all. It’s really an authentic statement of faith of the highest order. If you back up a little bit and look at the big picture you’ll grasp the reality that the Lord really does have control over all these, seemingly, chaotic things happening in the world today……including our own little petty dilemmas that we struggle with day in and day out. But we’ll only see those problems of ours’ as ‘petty’ and insignificant if we can look at them with an eternal perspective. When we do that….then we can start to believe our way out of our discouragement, knowing that there are better days ahead.

Looking back over 60+ years of ups and downs, victories and failures scattered along the road of life…..and considering where I COULD be. I’d have to say, “It’s All Good”!!

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