November 17, 2016

My sister, Elaine sent me a Facebook birthday greeting. She reminded me of a couple of things we used to do together.

Marble races.

We would set up a ramp, line up two marbles at a time, and race them. Single elimination tournament. All the marbles til we got down to the final two. We would cheer for the winner of each heat as if they were human.

There would be one winner.

The world champion.

Magnattel dollhouse.

A one story dollhouse on legs with no roof. A mom, a dad, a girl, a boy, a dog, a cat, and a mouse all had magnets attached to their bottom side, or feet. There were wands that we would use to move the inhabitants through the house. They could open doors, move furniture, leave so the animals could have free run of the house.

We were the gods of this family. We planned their lives, arranged their circumstances, even gave them their words.

They were totally dependent on us.

There are four kids in our family ( well, we used to be kids) and my sister and I were the middles.

We had great imaginations and we spent countless hours together in her room, away from the other two, making up worlds and situations. We had cowboy and Indian figures that would have all sorts of terrifying circumstances to overcome.

All at our whim.

We controlled everything, every outcome.

Except that time when a bad guy captured my favorite cowboy, the one with the legs bowed so that he could ride his horse. I called him “Jim.” (Good cowboy name, don’t you think?) Anyway, the bad guy was trying to extract information from Jim and put him in his torture device, a gooseneck desk lamp. As the bad guy laughed maniacally, Jim’s right leg melted off.

Nooooooo! He never rode a horse again.

There have been times in my life when I wondered if my imagination was the only reason I believed so strongly in God.

Except, I was never able to plan His moves, His words, His life.

I was the one under His power. He orchestrated my circumstances, the lessons I had to learn, the trials I had to endure, the joys I got to experience.

Maybe he gives us imagination so that we can begin to anticipate the unseen invisible world around us, and to receive visions and dreams to propel us forward into a LIFE of His planning.

Thanks, Elaine, for sharing that most important part of being prepared for what is yet to be.



November 11, 2017

We had been working on this wedding for weeks.
Wendy planning.
Jennifer pushing, helping organize, making calls.
Me just trying to follow orders.
On Friday, we spent half a day at the venue, with the first part of the decorating.
They worked on the flowers.
I did ladder and assembly stuff with my manly tools.
Carrying, loading, unloading.
Then rehearsal and rehearsal dinner.
We got home about ten.
I curled up with a blanket in my chair while Wendy did some finishing touches on the Cornhole Game we had built.
She woke me up about 12:45, and we went to bed.

Wedding Day.

5:30 AM. I began loading the last of the stuff.
I woke Wendy at 6:00, and I kept working.
Man, I was really looking forward to the end.
My favorite part would be the visiting with friends and family during the after celebration.
I knew that there would still be the tear down, reloading, and unloading the uhaul before I could really relax.
But I can’t possibly think that far ahead.
Wendy was running late, and was ready to leave.
I hadn’t even had my shower, so she went on ahead.
She called me in a few minutes. “I feel horrible. I’m just asking God to please don’t let me have a stroke. My blood pressure feels really high.”
I said, ” Just go there and be the boss. You know what needs to be done. Just get the others to do it.”
Of course the big task would be Zoe’s hair. She figured she needed 2 to 2 1/2 hours.
When I got there, I delivered the last of the stuff, and took food orders for McDonald’s.

Delivered the food. Wendy took two bites.
“I don’t have time to eat.” ( Or drink. She left it all sitting there.)
I made a few trips to Walmart, moved all through the venue filling in some gaps.
Wendy was doing Zoe’s hair. I called her a couple of times.
“Doing hair. Too busy to talk.”
Finally, the place was decorated, guests were arriving, I was suited up, and I spent some time visiting the early arrivals.
My favorite part.
It was quickly time to get with Zoë, to lead her into her next chapter.
Wendy looked at Zoë. “What’s wrong? Are you crying?”
Zoë replied, “I’m scared!”
I asked,”About the future or about now?” (Visions of runaway bride flashing in my brain.)
“No, I want the future! I’m scared about right now!”

The walk, the ceremony, man and wife, the kiss….it is done.

Now to the fun part.

Oh, wait. The pictures first.

Then the fun part.

Pictures over. The sun is down. The lights are illuminating, and Wendy and I begin our walk up the sidewalk to the barn to visit (YEA!) and have a cup of something hot. ( Man, I am really looking forward to that coffee!)

Dick and Ann were walking with us, and we kept stopping.

I looked toward the barn, wanting Wendy to see my brothers and sister.

I looked back. Wendy was looking down at the ground. My head started to turn, and I saw her go down. Fast. Her forehead head hit the ground with a thump.

“Wendy! Are you okay?!” I was kneeling beside her. I tried to get her to respond.
No response. No twitch. No movement.


I have never felt fear like I felt it at that moment!


A nurse, a doctor, more nurses, a nurse practitioner, paramedic, all at the same wedding.

Wendy’s eyes opened, she answered every question lucidly. Name. Date. Where we were. She didn’t know why she was on the ground.

But she was alive.

Ambulance came.

Everyone clapped as they rolled the gurney carrying Wendy through the pavilion…right past the barbecue…like she had just scored the winning run.

When they put Wendy in the ambulance, three year old, Harper, my great niece, came up with her Nezzie, Belinda. “We should pray for Wendy,” she said.

We did.

The paramedics did some checks, and we left the party that we had been working on so long.

Ambulance to the hospital, check-in, all the tests. Medicine for high blood pressure. Nothing else.

And that’s why the cracker dinner was okay with me.

The nurse said, “We are going to go ahead and release you as soon as your blood pressure goes down a little bit. We have never let someone out this quick.”

Power of prayer.

God is good.

We made it back to the wedding in time for the last dance.

We got to see Zoë before she and Evan left.

And, we had so much help, doing the tear down, it was almost like a party in itself.

Every wedding needs a story.

Wendy said,”Yeah, but I wish I wasn’t the story.”

But there is much more to this story….