Sunday, December 4, 2016

Second Sunday of Advent 2016

  • In this season of Advent it is meet and right that we should reflect on the coming of the Christ in flesh to mingle with mankind and to lay down His life for our salvation.  But it is imperative that we think, too, on the Advent when Christ shall return to Earth as conqueror and king, gathering His faithful to rule with Him.

Collect for the Season (from Boston's Church of the Advent)
Almighty God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness, and put upon us the armor of light, now in the time of this mortal life in which thy Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge both the quick and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal; through him who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
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Thursday, December 1, 2016

Christmas Kickoff


The article on the front page of our local newspaper announced Friday's "'Tis the Season" celebration in downtown Perfect.  Many fun things planned for residents of all ages, but the clip about the ice sculptor caught my eye.  I am sure his art work is stunning and to see him work should be entertaining.

But the thing I wonder is Where on Earth did he find "18 odd chickens"?  I know that cats are odd, and I have seen some strange rabbits, but just what makes a chicken odd?  17 chickens would be an odd number of chickens, but eighteen?

I am so confused.  Silly, too.

Well, it is December now, so on with the Christmas celebrations!

Monday, November 28, 2016

The Joys of Being Connected to the World

One of "those calls" of the sort you always get at mealtime.

     "David, I am callink about your computah which have a virus. Okay?"

     "No, it is not okay!"   CLICK


Well, the guy gave me the perfect setup for that one.

Not quite as slick as my "grandson" who was calling from The Dominican Republic where he was incarcerated, and could I help him with bail money?  


My oldest grandson.

There's a clue.  Doubt that young'n has ever so much as heard of The Dominican Republic.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Turkey


This bird has been wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving since 2008.  First he was too scrawny to eat, then eventually he was too old to eat.  Yet he is still around, freeloading and having a scratching, squawking good time.  He knows now, I think, that the axe is no longer 
a threat and that he will ultimately die a natural death. barring a possible coyote.  But he is pretty wily.  The bird, I mean.  The Coyote is Wiley.

May the blessings of the Lord abundantly fill your life.
Happy Thanksgiving
_____

2√2b2

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Thanksgiving in another time, another place

 Thanksgiving in the Bowl

Did I tell you about the time we had but one bird and thirty-five people for Thanksgiving?  Well, your Aunt Grace decide we gonna be thankful whether we had anythin' or not.  She didn't miss hardly a fambly member, sayin' to 'em all, "We gonna have Thanksgiving over to our place this year.  Jep and me has been blessed, and we'd be disappointed you didn't join us."  Now in the manner of the times, I guess we had been blessed.  We was still alive, and we managed to scrape somethin' together each day to keep our souls connected to the bodies.

It was Dust Bowl days, doncha know, and nobody had much a nothin'.  We was much better off 'n many around us, 'cause we had saved a little coin which I had failed to put in the bank back in '29.  Always was a bit leery them suited guys with they green visors.  So anyway, we weren't total broke, and I gone up to Canon where I was able to get a few things, couple hunnert weight a cracked corn, hunnert pound a cornmeal, pinto beans, enough for the whole town.  So it looked like beans and cornbread for some time to come.  I'ma thinkin' you was maybe three, four years old at the time, 'cause your Mama and Daddy come on down for Thanksgivin'.

Anyways, when I left Canon to come on home, I stopped by Arly's over to Florence and wha'd'ye reckon?  Ol' Arly had hisself half-dozen turkeys he'd been nursin' along.  Scrawny they was, too, eatin' what they could scratch up.  Arly give me one a them birds, insisted I have it, so I tuk hit.  Well, I bring that bird home, and glory be! I have all that cracked corn and two months 'til Thanksgiving.  Well, son, I kept that bird pretty close, pen him up in the ol' tool shed.  Yessir.  Fed him good and give him more water than I tuk myself.  Well, talk about surprises!  When people start gatherin' in our house on that Thursday mornin', the aroma like to knock 'em down, hit smell so great.  Some a the fambly had had little enough, and then some, when it come to meat in Lord only knows when.

Well, your Aunt Grace had kept the winders sheeted over purty good, and the sugar and flour were kept wrapped tightly and inside half-gallon Mason jars.  Couldn't set out a sugar bowl, nor even keep it in a cabinet, 'cause even with a lid on hit, the dust would just natural get inside.  Gritty sugar ain't fit'n to use.  So Grace had been bustlin' around two days gettin' fixed for dinner on Thanksgivin'.  Now she only invited people to come, she never ask them to bring anything, but they all come with they hands full, and those ladies were bringin' the best they had.  Why Marcella Dean, you know Marcella, her'n Larry brought they six kids along, but Marcella make the best "apple" pie you can imagine from nothin' more'n pie crust, sody crackers, and vinegar and sugar.  I don't rightly know how she done it.

Anyway, the feast was on, and Grace would have it no other way but that she would make a little speech afore we et.  And she lay it on.  She said as how times had been bad for a long time, and some folk was gettin' discouraged.  Why the whole Palmer tribe, she says, done lit out for Cally-forny, and if we was all givin' up, wouldn't be nothin' here no more but tumble-down shacks and rattlesnakes.  And wouldn't you know, like right on cue in a stage play or somethin', Fred Baker speaks up and says, "Let the snakes have 'er.  She ain't no good no more no how."

And Grace let him have it.  "That," she says, "is just what I'ma talkin' 'bout.  This is Thanksgivin', and y'all need to be thankful.  Be thankful that we are still a makin' it.  Be thankful that we have loved ones who care about us and would give the shirt off'n they back to he'p ary one of us.  Y'all buckle in, keep the faith, he'p one another and pray, I mean pray like you believe the promises of God, and pray some more, day and night.  We will be okay.  Now Darryl, please to offer thanks to the Good Lord over these vittles, and we'll tuck into 'em!"

So right then and there the prayer meetin' start, but hit warn't so drawed out thet the food get cold!  No sir, we done justice to that spread, let me tell you.  And that bird with the fixin's fed them thirty-five people plum easy.  And the prayin' continue, and behole, the very next Fall the drought breaks and the rains come.  And then, well we are still here, hain't we?

© 2013 David W. Lacy

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Be Still

"And as they were going down to the end of the city, Samuel said to Saul, Bid the servant pass on before us, (and he passed on), but stand thou still a while, that I may shew thee the word of God."
--I Samuel 9:27

In the previous study we saw Samuel in communion with the Lord, for the people were demanding a king to rule over them so that, "we might be as other nations."  The Lord told Samuel exactly what a king would do to the people (Chapter 8) but nevertheless, He said, they have rejected my rule over them.  Give them what  they want.  And thus ends theocratic rule and that not to be re-instituted for untold millennia.

Samuel in obedience searches the people for a king and finds Saul, handsome and taller than all the people, son of Kish of the tribe of Benjamin.  Samuel called Saul to dine with him,  But Saul was on a mission to find his father's donkeys.  Samuel said, Forget about the donkeys.   They walked together after dining. Now the scripture quoted above.

"Stand still," Samuel said, "that I may show you the word of God."

The word to Saul is the word of the day for us in this day and time.  We must learn to stand still and attend to the message that we may see the will of God.   The hustle and bustle, the pressures of life and living, the distractions of both needful things and the frivolous must all be set out of mind as we stop and listen.  Kish's donkeys were a distraction to Saul.  Samuel told him to put that away and tend to what was truly important.

"Be still," the Lord says, "and know that I am God." --Psalm 46:10

Friday, November 18, 2016

Walter Tell Retold


This from five years ago today, which makes this the 709th anniversary of the famous shot.










Turtle duck turtle duck turtle duck duck duck!


We all recognize instantly the phrase from The William Tell Overture. But this article is not about opera, or music, or Rossini.

Today, if our legends are to be trusted implicitly, is the 704th anniversary of the famous cross-bow shot in Switzerland by one William Tell. It is a story that casts William Tell as a larger-than-life hero. I am of the opinion, however, that the real hero to be memorialized on this date is Tell's son, Walter. In case you need to brush up on your fifth-grade lessons, Tell refused to salute the hat raised on a pole which represented the Habsburg authority in Altdorf. Gessler, Austrian ruler of the dorf, was a harsh and unforgiving despot. He had Tell arrested, and because of Tell's fame as an archer, he required that Tell shoot an apple from his son's head, or both would be executed.

My father never earned any medals for it, because he never entered any competitions. But he had a clear eye and a steady hand which enabled him to be a crack marksman with a rifle. Prior to hunting season each year, we would go to the range to "sight in" the rifles. I have seen him shoot, and he was good. And yet. And yet I think that to persuade me to stand before him with an apple on my head-- oh, no. No, thank you very much. And thus I nominate Walter Tell as the hero of the tale to this point.

At any rate, Tell's shot cleanly split the apple. This is pretty much the end of the school-child tale as I recall it from my ten-year old experience. But Gessler had noted that Tell had taken two bolts from his quiver prior to the shot, so he asked, Why the second bolt? Tell replied had he killed his son, he would have put the second bolt through Gessler himself. Irate, Gessler had Tell arrested. One might like to read the rest of the tale, for it ultimately cost Gessler his life, and forever immortalized William Tell as a Swiss Hero.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

God Will Allow a King

And said unto him, Behold, thou art old, and thy sons walk not in thy ways: now make us a king to judge us like all the nations.
But the thing displeased Samuel, when they said, Give us a king to judge us. And Samuel prayed unto the Lord.
And the Lord said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them. 
 --I Samuel 8:5-7
 Sunday last I posted this scripture along with the admonition to study the Word.

From the time of Israel's release from bondage in Egypt and their subsequent occupation of the Promised Land up to the time of this account the people, unlike the nations around them, had existed without a king over them.  They had relied on a series of judges, men and women of God, prophets to communicate with God and with the people to maintain leadership and justice in the land.

Samuel's predecessor, Eli, was Israel's thirteenth judge and dispensed justice until the day a messenger brought the news that the military had suffered a serious defeat at the hands of the Philistines and the Philistines had taken The Ark of the Covenant.  Eli, at age ninety-eight and extremely corpulent heard this horrifying news, fell from his seat, broke his neck and died.

Now Samuel, Eli's protege, assumed the role of Israel's leader. He has served in his capacity as judge for forty years and is now himself an elderly man.  He places his sons, Abiah and Joel, in positions of judgeship.  But they are faithless and open their palms, ruling not justly but corruptly.  The people start their plaint,  "Give us a king that we might be even as other nations."

Samuel, distraught, lays this case before the Lord.  God now tells Samuel that the people are not rebelling against Samuel but against God Himself.  Further he says, Let them have what they want and here is what they will get.  For the detailed account of the Lord's word, read verses 11-18 of this chapter.

God's guidelines for living are clear and adequate.  Is it possible that we sometimes, like the Israelites of old, pester Him for something until He gives us what we want to our detriment?