10 09 2011

 I am sitting here at my desk on this Friday afternoon before the storm and I am not really sure what to do. My family has left for Pennsylvania and common sense shouts to me that I should be with them- but for some unknown reason to me- I am still here and I can’t go yet. I am not trying to be stupid. I am not trying to prove anything. I am not really feeling any extreme male need to seek a thrill. I am just frozen in place at this moment. I can’t seem to muster the gumption to kick my body into high gear to function and move! So I sit and I wait and I wish I genuinely knew what it was I was looking for.

I just got home late last night from a trip to western Pennsylvania where I spent the last few days visiting with my son Rudy and my beautiful daughter-in-law Lindsey and my new grandson Jude. They just recently moved to Johnstown where Rudy is the new Assistant Pastor at the Pike Grace Brethren Church. I was so very proud that I got to see him in action on the job and I got to love on Jude as much as the time on the fleeting clock would allow me to. It was worth every mile of the long drive to and from just to be able to hold him and let him know by my touch how much his Pop-Pop loves him. If contentment could be frozen in a moment of perfection this side of heaven- it would be the simple activity of just being with Jude and having him in my arms and looking into his eyes and being grateful. I wish it could have lasted a lifetime.

During our time away together, my son Joel and I took in an Indian’s baseball game at Progressive Field in Cleveland which just happens to be my favorite ballpark in the world. I lived in the area while they were constructing this masterpiece of a stadium and even though I moved to Nebraska before it actually opened- I have returned many times since and I have found it to be the absolute best place to watch baseball! My son and I had a blast together Tuesday afternoon as the Tribe won in walk-off fashion with a bottom of the 9th three run home run complete with fireworks. We also got to see a young lady named Vickie with two of her boys at the game. I was Vickie’s Pastor when she used to be in my Youth Group when I worked in Stow, Ohio back in the early 1990’s. She has always been like a daughter to me so you could imagine my joy when we actually got to hang out together. God gave us a great little reunion in the middle of a city that has always rocked in my book!!!

Before we left Johnstown on Thursday, Rudy and Lindsey took us to a local restaurant called “Off The Rak” where I ordered a sandwich called “The Belly Buster,” which consisted of 2 grilled cheese sandwiches with a half pound rare hamburger and 2 fried eggs with cheese in between the grilled cheese. It was an incredible dining experience even though it wasn’t the healthiest of food fare that I have ever partaken of but I wanted to go for it and I am glad I did! One of the best parts of visiting new areas is eating a specialty of that town and I am open to trying new treats anyplace, anywhere at anytime! We also got to see the world’s oldest record store in Johnstown called George’s Song Shop which holds 5 floors of records and over 1 million 45’s in stock. Needless to say a music lover like me could have spent a month here but Jude wasn’t as delighted his grandfather so I made sure that I found a long lost golden oldie that I can’t wait to play on Rudy’s Morning Funhouse soon!

I just spent a lifetime of memories in the last few hours this week and I get home to be hit with the chaos and confusion caused by Hurricane Irene. Why do storms have to come and spoil the feeling? Why does there always have to be an end to our celebrations here on earth? Why can’t the joy ever last? Why does some frightening forecast always have to rain on our parades? I don’t know the answers to my quandaries other than that this world is not my true home! I am only passing through and I am not to get too attached to anything here that would get in the way of my desire to seek higher ground. Maybe that is why I am still sitting here in Cape May County when everyone has been ordered to evacuate. Maybe I don’t want to leave something that I am too afraid that I might not ever see again. Maybe I think that I can prevent this powerful storm’s paralysis by my presence alone. I don’t know! I do know that I need time to reflect and that is what I am doing. And I pray that God will keep His hand of protection upon me while I wait in His presence. What will happen? I guess we will all find out by the time you read this in the paper. As for today, I can honestly tell you that I am fully resonating with the truth that my times are in God’s control for right now, I feel helpless! I didn’t say hopeless- just helpless. God please save us all from ourselves and help us to cherish what matters most- while it most matters! Amen…



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