Monday, September 18, 2006

Vacation Adventure...

Never fails, everytime we go away on vacation, I always think of some things I'll miss:
1. My Greys, Ben and Jett.
2. Playing the daily Trivia on RGBP even though I am as slow as
molasses. How do folks read through the questions so fast?!!?
I know my rhythm is slower, I just didn't think I was cart and
buggy slow. But everyone seems to be Ferrari Fast!
3. I confess. I will miss the Season Premier of Desperate Housewives.
4. My ripening tomatoes. Hope there's still some left when we return.
5. My bed.
6. Talking with my sister.
7. Keeping up with all the RGBPs.

Things I won't miss:
1. Writing a sermon!!
2. Hospital/nursing home visits!!!!!
3. Committee meetings!!!!!!
4. Women's meeting!!!!!!
5. Cleaning house!!!!!
6. Feeding the humingbirds, bluebirds, greyhounds
and husband!!!!
Well, I'll still have to feed the husband while on vacation, since he'll be with me!!!
Well, Gals, I'm off across the Pond headed for the mists and fog of the land of Scots and the Isle of Iona. I'll be off-line for 2 full weeks, soaking up a different culture, making space for God, and looking for more signs-along-the-way. LH and I are ready to brave driving on the opposite side of the street, wish us well. Let be known, that we drove around Florence, Italy for four solid hours trying to find our hotel. That was driving around the old part of Florence for at least 2 hours and then driving around in the old part for almost 2 hours. I do not joke. I do not kid. I am not proud of this at all!!! So, we'll see what awaits us on this vacation adventure.
In the meanwhile, God's peace be with each and all of you.

Saturday, September 09, 2006


Simple Things: Name five things you enjoyedd this week:

1. LH's 50th birthday celebration on Sunday with my sister and brother-in-law, LH's Dad and twin sisters. Time together, champagne toast, wonderful dinner out, great birthday cake!

2. My sermon came together in record time! Yeehaw!!!
3. The last of my stash of Fat Tire beer.
4. Massaging my pair of Greys.
5. The blissfully cooler weather and sunshine.

BONUS: How could I forget the reddish-burgandy purse I found yesterday?!!? It doesn't match a thing I have but it so caught my eye. All my purses are practical beige, brown and black. So, I felt very girly and look forward to using it this fall. Now that's a simple enjoyment!!!

Go ahead and name the 5 things YOU enjoyed this week!

Thursday, September 07, 2006


LH was indeed surprised when my sister and husband rang the doorbell at dinnertime having just flown in from the Windy City. I pulled out the defrosted Italian Sausage hidden in the bottom of the crisper under a bag of tortillas.
Although, LH was mildly anxious/stressed over the gathering, he did settle in and enjoy the gathering of family, champagne toast, the reading of the lame little B-day ditty, opening of gifts, wonderful dinner at the Best Restaurant in Town, and the traditional birthday cake afterwards at home.
I even managed to find the bobble Hula girl as I was looking for something else. Didn't find the something else, but found the Hula Girl who was in hidden in a bag I looked through three times. Don'tcha know it!!! I will find the something else when I go looking for the other thing.
So, it was a wonderful gathering and a birthday worth celebrating. LH now joins the 50 and Over Club!!!!
Me? I've got some time before I join. And I'm in no hurry to get there!!!!!!

Wednesday, September 06, 2006


I am a prayer partner for a colleague of mine, friends since Sem days and all the trials and ord exams we suffered through together. His latest ministry is the challenge of new church/church redevelopment. Into this mix, rears the ugly head of a retired pastor who is constantly a "thorn in the flesh".
Having served as an interim in several congregations in over a decade, I have run into this time and time again. The ominious presence of a retired pastor.
Perhaps, precisely because I have served as an interim, I have learned the spiritual lesson of letting go, of knowing I am called to serve a community of faith that has been around (for ages) before me and who (by God's grace) will be around long after me. I join with others in the midst of their spiritual journey and mine because God has brought us together for his good purpose. When it is time for me to leave, I pray, that I will graciously take my leave of my brothers and sisters in Christ, entrusting them to new leadership and ever to God's care.
Leavetaking is difficult and a hard process especially when the relationships have been mutually loving, and a great match. But, I remind myself, that in the end, my time is always temporary, even in an installed position. It's also not about me, but God. It's not my agenda (or at least, a very tiny piece, if I'm honest), but God's. It's what God is doing and will be doing with them. I need no memorial to my ministry. I don't need to say, "I accomplished this or that while I was pastor." It's not what I do, it's what God does and is doing. What is success in any pastor's life anyway? Certainly, not measureable by the world's standards.
I pray I will live to see retirement and that I will not interfere in any way any church that I attend and of which I will be a part. It is not MY church, ever. It belongs to God and the people God has called and invited to be that particular community of faith. I pray that retired pastors can honor the well-being of a congregation that they have loved and served, that they would honor what God is doing through the leadership of another, even when you don't agree with them. I repeat, it is not YOUR church!!!!!!! If you love the people and God whom you have served so well, ably and faithfully, you will let go and trust in God's good work through others. Celebrate with them new adventures in discipleship and new ways of being the body of Christ. For their health, well-being, and good, move away, find another church to attend and be part of offering in gently, non-threatening ways your gifts or skills. Do not keep socializing and making regular visits with former parishioners - the new pastor needs to build those relationships. Decline doing funerals and weddings, except in extreme instances after following protocol and with the present pastor's full knowledge and invitation.
It is a spiritual lesson for us all, to learn to surrender to God and to let go of those things to which we cling too closely. Pray for a spirit that is willing to surrender. Pray about what you most cling to and why that is.
Honor your service to God and God's people by not interfering or being a"thorn in the flesh". And thank you, for your love, care and gifts with which you served that particular community of faith.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006


1. Driving: an enjoyable way to clear your mind? a means to an end?
a chance to be quiet with one's thoughts? a necessary evil?
the downfall of our planet and its fossil fuels? Discuss.
I do enjoy driving for the most part. Sometimes, I will drive a bit
to clear my mind, create space between shut-in visits, and often my
commute or little drive during the day also is some of my prayer
Yes, driving sometimes becomes a means to an end and a necessary
evil when I'm in a hurry, have to get somewhere I'm not thrilled
about going or am dealing with orange barrels and construction or
am stuck in traffic. Not too much of a problem here.
Here it is 2006 and all the Weekly Readers I read in Elementary
school said that by now we would live more space-agey and have
little hover crafts or Jetson-like crafts. I'm waiting....I'm still
driving a mini-van dependent on gas. So where's my hover craft?

2. Do you drive the speed limit? A little faster?Slower? Have you ever
gotten a ticket?
Yes, I usually drive speed limit and shade faster (5 mph over limit).
LH usually drives just under the speed limit because limit means
limit, which you are not to exceed. Yes, I've gotten a couple of
tickets, in Indiana, in Ohio. Been fortunate in that I haven't had
a speeding ticket in several years. Did get a parking ticket in IL
while parked by a church during Synod Assembly. Had to show
up in court and it was thrown out.
3. Do you take public transportation? When? What's your opinion of
the experience?
Not possible here in the country. I suppose I could take a horse
and buggy ride but that would really lengthen my 17 mile
I did take the bus to HS and it was fine. I've ridden the Bus and "El"
while in Seminary. And I never was mugged. That happened in
Sem parking lot!!!!!!
4. Complete this sentence: ______has the worst drivers I've ever
Let's see, that would be Florida or Italy. They can be soooo slow
in Florida and sofast in Italy, course in Italy you're contending with
Vespas and motorcycles, bicycles, cars, and trucks on narrow
streets, one way streets, piazzas, and just try to find a parking
space in Florence, I dare you!!!!
5. The city with the 6th longest average commute is 29 minutes. How
does your personal commute rate?
Well, I'd be pretty close with 25 minutes, unless I get stuck behind
a farm tractor, retiree tourists heading to Amish Land, or an ODOT
truck spray painting the yellow lines down the middle of the road!