Hello friends, hope this finds you doing well, a deep sadness out here on the Pike with the passing of friend and neighbor, Dale Johnson.
Wilma T., Linda Bolden, and I, went to the visitation in Rising Sun Sunday afternoon; we waited two hours but couldn’t get in, the line was still over a block long. The passing of the governor wouldn’t have had any more people come out to pay their respects.
The Johnson family was well liked and known in this community for many decades and that was most evident at the visitation. Almost 40 years ago (when I first came here from a large city in Florida – things were a lot different), there was this group on the Pike that welcomed Frank and me and our family: William and Vandora Bennett, Eldric and Joy Hazeldean, John and Carrie Ray, Gerald and Sherry Johnson, Emma and John Shackleford, and Wilma and Eugene Turner (there were others but these lived close by and formed a ‘community within a community’.)
William B., John and Carrie Ray, Gerald J., John S., Eugene Turner, and Frank Miller, have all passed away. Vandora lives in West Virginia with her son and has many health problems, Eldric and Joy have relocated to Madison to be near their doctors (Joy is on dialysis), leaving Emma, Wilma, Sherry, and me, still here on the Pike.
The family names are still represented on the Pike by the widows and children (all grown now); some farms have been divided and partly allocated to children, others of our children have settled in other parts of the county and country, but the feeling of ‘family community’ remains. God blessed me when He brought me here.
The loss of Dale leaves a big ‘hole’ and he will be terribly missed by his mother Sherry, his wife Diana and daughters (Chrissie, Leslie, and Nyla), his brothers and sisters-in-law, aunts and uncles, cousins, friends and neighbors. Dale was a good friend and neighbor, always willing to lend a ‘helping hand’. May the angels guard your rest Dale, until we meet again.
One morning last week, Ruth Osborn called to let me know that Easter was on March 23rd in 2008; she remembers it specifically because that was the year her son, Bill Nail, was so sick. You’d have thought I could remember just four years ago – but that is what you get for thinking; I am lucky to remember what I had for breakfast.) Thanks Ruth for the information and the good conversation.
Bridge last week was here, Rita Green was out of town (having fun with family in Florida) so Debbie Turner, Ana Slover, Carolyn Green and I played, ate, laughed, and enjoyed the day.
Friday was Spanish class at the ‘Y’ and that was fun too. ‘Professora Evelyn’ read articles, in Spanish, to us for us to interpret. Actually we didn’t do too bad, kind of surprised ourselves.
Stopped by the Library and talked to Margie Edwards; it seems I was not the only one enjoying ‘birthday celebrations’. Belated Happy Birthday Margie. Margie told me this was her 69th and she wanted to give ‘advanced warning’ to one and all, that she expected a ‘rip/roaring, surprise birthday party for her 70th. A word to the wise should be sufficient but just in case, I suggested she do a little reminding a little closer to the event.
An apology (not that that is an unusual occurrence with my memory) goes out to Mrs. Leona Baker (I called her Mrs. Wilson), Kyle Perry’s mom. Sorry Leona, I’d like to say it will never happen again, but liars go to ‘hell’…and I really hate hot weather – so I won’t say it.
Gayle Rayles had kidney stone surgery last week husband Jan told us Sunday; we need to keep her on our prayer list along with Joy Hazeldean. Joy had surgery (which was really preparation for more to come) and don’t forget to mention Eldric when you talk to the Lord also.
Michael Martin and Justin Brindley left for Wyoming last week for work there; it is temporary and mom Mary is glad for them but is already missing Michael. I asked Mike where in Wyoming Michael would be located…he said in the desert, at a power plant. Let me tell you that really narrowed it down.
Pastor Bobby had one of those weeks we are all glad we didn’t have…and on top of everything else he got sick. He still came in to preach (they live in Louisville) but was careful not to get close to anyone. Baby Emma Lynn had a ‘cranky’ week (she is getting close to cutting teeth) to which added to Bobby’s angst…didn’t help wife Mel out much either.
Debbie Bruce’s nephew, Hunter Hines, had a bicycle accident last week that tore a big chunk of flesh and hide off his leg. Cindy Anderson told us that her dad, Norris Works, is having some bad health problems. Please remember these two in your prayers this week. Charlotte Kroening is having some more health problems also.
Talked to Donna Miller (Frank’s wife) and she said she ‘over-did it’ and she was hurting with her shoulder. Donna said she was feeling so much better that she just got carried away and now she is paying for her bad judgment. I told her not beat herself up over it, a lot of us do the same thing – she said that didn’t help much but thanks anyway.
Remember also Lucinda Mangold (she is driving again and preparing to go back to work, for which she is grateful) but she is still having some health problems. Remember too Bob Miller for medical problems and two unspoken requests (God knows who and what) and definitely remember to thank Him for all He had done for us.
No matter what circumstances we find ourselves in (or what caused them), God promised never to abandon us…and He always keeps His promises.
Sometimes we let the distractions of life and the world get ‘between’ God and us; in other words, we stray off the ‘beaten path’, take our focus off Christ, and on self, and usually get in some kind of trouble or another…course maybe I am just speaking about myself, (yeah right.)
Once God accepts us as His children, brothers and sisters of Christ, He never leaves us; as eternally saved, we are ‘in-dwelt’ by the Holy Spirit (yeah I know that is kind of hard for some folks to understand but that doesn’t make it any less true.) Sometimes things get in the way of our ‘relationship’ with God; the Holy Spirit ‘prods’ us back on the right path in one way or another.
Through the prayers of caring friends, through occasions of Christian fellowship, radio and TV, conversations and music, (sometimes on billboards – ok, I admit it, I am hard-headed and need the message made really plain and simple so I can understand it), are some of the ways the H. S. ‘prods’ us back into a closer relationship with God. There are lots of other ways He works to bring us where we need to be to glorify God. How has He ‘prodded’ you? Scarier yet, are you too far gone to even feel/hear the Holy Spirit?
No one is beyond the ‘forgiveness’ of God; if Judas Iscariot had truly repented and asked for forgiveness, God would have granted it. No sin is too great, no ‘stain’ too deep, that God will not forgive…and forget it. Nothing is impossible with God.
Incidentally Linda, don’t give up; Patty Miller and Karen Nickell are supposed to send me a couple of ‘good-tasting’, diabetic recipes – course I don’t want you to hold your breath or anything like that. Proof will be in the pudding as they say.
Stopped in to visit with Patty and Mike Miller Friday afternoon and when I got there: Mike was sitting out ‘taking the sun’ as he said (Friday was a beautiful day), Patty was chatting with daughters Mindy and Jennie, and little Keagan and Traiten were rolling around in the grass and racing back and forth (we all wished we had their energy.) Florence Peters drove in from doing some chores and stopped to talk for a few minutes too. We all enjoyed the afternoon.
Jennie was trying to work through a migraine headache and earache (I don’t think all the noise was helping her out much though.)
Debbie Turner with son Alex and Lucinda Mangold attended Shawe High School’s presentation of “Guys and Dolls’ at the Ohio Theatre in Madison Friday evening. Debbie said it was really good and they had a good time.
Grandson Josh Carr and Tyler Peelman attended the Prom Saturday night (several of the kids met at a friend’s house to get ready; Kym Martin was doing hair for them.) Cyndi said that Josh told her they had a great time (I know parents were glad they had a good time but especially that they all got home safe.)
Until next week my prayer for each of you is that the Lord will cause His face to shine on you, to bless you and keep you safe from harm; may He lift up His countenance and give you peace. Amen.