I don't know how long I can keep this up, but I will try to work in the Word. (it's SING.)
It's been a bad week, with ned adventures. Check here if you're interested. But I am fading.
Anyway, to begin...
Wow. Three hundred posts.
I was going to tie this into the Spartans' stand at Thermopylae, the Three Hundred under King Leonidas holding off a million Persians.
When Leonidas was told that the Persian archers' arrows would darken the sun, his reply was, "So much the better. We shall fight in the shade."
Cool attitude, and great moto.
But I have something more mundane to say, and it's about Bucket Lists.
I've stood on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon, and the colours and the space and the air lifted my heart in a way that no place has ever done. I felt God there.
I'd like to see it again.
But now, even though I live only a few hours away by car, it's unreachable. I don't have the health to support an out-and-back trip. And travel by airline is out; I'm not well enough to be carried as a commercial passenger. And I can't afford it.
So, there was an offer from a friend, to create a GoFundMe page to charter a plane to Flagstaff, and a medical transport company to run me 'up the hill' to the Rim. It could be done in a day.
Yes, it could. And it's appealing.
But I'd lose one day here, in my home. I'd lose the company of the dogs for a day, and an evening spent with Barbara, watching a rerun of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.
The days are precious now. A day at the Canyon gained is a day here, lost.
A day without the dogs singing, melodious howling for no known reason except perhaps jot.
It's not worth it.
This isn't pride. If I absolutely had to see the Canyon one more time, I'd gratefully accept any and all help to get there. I can't do it on my own, not in the time that's left.
So I guess I have fulfilled my Bucket List, and it's around me every day. I love my life, and I'm not willing to sacrifice a second for any epiphany.
I have my epiphany.
(Those who might be revisiting here may notice that there's something missing...I had mentioned in this spot that I was in need of a pair of Clark Desert Boots to fit my swollen feet - they're the only boots that work for me - and I had asked if anyone might have a used pair, as they are, new, out of my price range.
Well...two early readers have gone to the unexpected trouble and expense of ordering a pair for me, and I am simply bowled over by her generosity. Susan and Christy, we are so humbly grateful for this; You've made a huge, huge difference here. I can stay somewhat more mobile through this lovely gift. Thank you so very, very much.)
And for the musical theme...I won't pretend that it's been a good week. Things are deteriorating, and what was possible a mere seven days ago is now a wistful memory. Nonetheless, John Fogerty delivers a good sharp stick into death's eye with Almost Saturday Night - please give it a listen, if you want to know my heart. I want you to know my heart. It's all I have left.
A bit of news..."Blessed Are The Pure Of Heart" has come home! Tate Publishing has gone south, and I regained the rights, so it'll soon be available in both Kindle hardcopy versions once again. In the meantime, if you absolutely can't wait (!), you can still get used copies from Amazon.
I have another blog, "Starting The Day With Grace". The focus is a grace quote from someone you might not expect (like, say Mick Jagger) and a short commentary. I hope you'll join me.
Marley update... been moved to a sanctuary, and Bay County will revise their 'dangerous dog' codes.
If you can, please do leave a comment. I am trying to answer all, and I am failing, but please know this - I read and treasure each one.
Below are my recent releases on Kindle -please excuse their presence in the body of the blog. I haven't the energy to get them up as 'buttons' in the sidebar. You can click on the covers to go to the Amazon links.
sorry to hear that you have had a bad week and you feel your end is drawing nigh. Know the thoughts of many go with you.ReplyDelete
Thank you so much, Annette. The kind thoughts and prayers do keep me buoyed up.Delete
You are right to stay put, but I don't think I could do it! The South Rim---yeah, pretty amazing. Sounds like your family and Star Trek can't compete anyway. We love you, Andrew. Sorry for your sucky week.ReplyDelete
Thanks o much, Christina! The South Rim is really magical for me; seeing it changed my life, each time. It would be so tempting to go if I could...but just not quite tempting enough.Delete
I do feel the love, Christina, and I hope that I am returning it in due measure...I sure try to.
Awww, Andrew. Your priorities say so much about who you are. Your people, your dogs are top in your book. That resonates. I'm so sorry it's been so miserable. I've prayed for you guys frequently throughout each day. I know God is walking with you in this terrible hard season. I pray you sense His presence and the pleasure He takes in you. Sending very gentle hugs and multitudes of prayers, my friend.ReplyDelete
Jeanne, we really, really appreciate the gentle hugs and the prayers. It was a pretty awful weekend - you can ask Barbara, as I was out of my head with pain. Thus, the delayed reply.Delete
God is good, all the time, and all the time, God is good.
Your boots are being shipped from Macy's. Lord, I hope they are the correct ones. LMK, ok? Love from NC. Are you copping out on our "2020 Vision?" xoReplyDelete
good for you Susan!!! I was ready to figure out how to make it happen!Delete
Susan and Christy. thank you so much!!!!!!!!!!!Delete
And Susan, no, I fully intend to be there with 2020 Vision. The hill will be steeper than I thought, but I won't quit.
Some bucket items are better left behind. I'm certain the Grand Canyon is AMAZING but I agree (for what it's worth) savoring the time with your family who loves you dearly, surrounded by familiar seems to be the better choice. And I wonder...what's the Grand Canyon when heaven awaits dear friend! Love, hugs and prayers for you and Barb.ReplyDelete
Christy, I agree completely, that some bucket list items really are better left undone. So often, they're not things we've done because they're not 'who we are'.Delete
With The Canyon, seeing the light and the space did give me the kind of uplift I had never experienced, something palpably transcendental. If I had a feeling of the indefinite in life, I'd probably be OK to take a day. But an inexorable calculus of ever-worsening days makes that a poor choice.
Time is, in the end (and at the end), rationed. That's OK.
So glad you're here!
Love this part Andrew- "So I guess I have fulfilled my Bucket List, and it's around me every day. I love my life, and I'm not willing to sacrifice a second for any epiphany." Isn't it so true that the best parts of our lives are the every day things we sometimes take for granted? Thanks for the reminder to appreciate right where we are- no matter how it looks!ReplyDelete
Amy, you're so right - the best parts are o easily taken for granted, and we fail to notice the magic made true, all around.Delete
So glad you're here, and please pardon my delayed response.
So true that what really matters is the ordinary things of life and finding contentment there. I'm sorry it's been such a bad week. Praying for you!ReplyDelete
Lesley, thank you so much, for being here and especially for the prayers...and please pardon the lateness of my reply.Delete
Thanks for sharing your heart, Andrew.ReplyDelete
And thank you for being here, Jeannie.Delete
Dreams never die. But you are defining what is most precious to you in the long run. Thank you for fighting so hard to live. Your grit and determination is that of a true champion, who fights the good fight and never gives up the fight, come what may. Bless you. Still praying. N.ReplyDelete
Norma, I have no words but thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for this gracious comment.Delete
And thank you so much for the prayers. They are needed. Things are bad.
I'm only just getting to understand your story through your posts, Andrew, and can I let you know what an inspiration you are? The way you shine grace and hope and strength is powerful... just wanted you know. Praying blessing bigger than big upon you for each day He gives you!ReplyDelete
Christine, thank you so much! Your words do me such great honour. I'm really overwhelmed. Again, thank you!Delete
(And please pardon my delayed reply.)
Oh I'm so glad you are receiving the boots you need! What a blessing.ReplyDelete
It is always good to read your words here. You give me much to think about! Thanks for sharing. Spending time with Barbara and your dogs sounds like a good use of your precious time and energy. Thanks for the reminder that time with our loved ones is so much better than the Grand Canyon!
Rachel, yes...I am just bowled over, about the boots. They will be a huge help, not the least in steadying my footing, and preventing falls!Delete
You are in my prayers daily...and yeah, The Canyon's cool, but it doesn't hold a candle to what I have around me now.
Leave it to Susan and Christy! They both embody God's love in this world. Oh and I'm so sorry it's been such a rough week. Continuing to pray for your peace friend. Treasure the time with Barbara and your pets. Too often the world forgets to treasure what they do gave. Love you bro! I'm in the 49 spot this week. (Come over...there's a surprise there)ReplyDelete
Tara, yes, Susan And Christy are really wonderful. I am so grateful! We really appreciate the prayers, and yeah...it's all to easy to overlook what's right in front of us, and all around us.Delete
heading over to your place now! Love back!
Andrew, when you realize what you have in front of you is more important than what is outside of our reach, well, that is something, isn't it? Oh, I learn from you every week. You become more melodious to God all the time. In #55 this week.ReplyDelete
mMry, yes...it's definitely something to realize that my heart's desire was really in my hands, all along.Delete
I so appreciate your comment, and your presence here...and ask your forgiveness for my late reply.
glad you are being provided for by people who care for you andrew. also glad you realize where your priorities lie as time runs out here. for each person it is different. blessings. i'm at slot 58 today.ReplyDelete
Martha, you're absolutely right - the blessing are indeed different for each person.Delete
Thanks so much for being here!
Cannot imagine what you are living through. Praying grace and power and peace.
So glad you liked the song, Linda!Delete
I would hate to know that anyone else was living through my days. Not even my worst enemy...and I guess that is the keyto forgiveness, and another post, if I get 'round to it!
Thank you so much for the prayers, and for being here.
What a wonderful gift that Susan and Christy have given you, Andrew! I wasn't aware of this small but necessary convenience that has make your life and mobility so much better. You are a man who enjoys the simple like it is an extravagance! And we are the ones blessed by your humble and perspective-shifting focus! It's like you are the rocky complexity and colors of the Grand Canyon for us. We come here, stand at the edge and are awe-inspired by your optimism, humility and strength! We don't even need a jet to get us here either! Aren't we the lucky ones! Hugs and prayers for you, my friend!ReplyDelete
Beth, your words simply stun me...I'm so honoured, and can say nothing besides a 'thank you' from the bottom of my heart. It's truly a privilege to be here, and to be able to share this journey.Delete
That I've touched lives...wow. That makes it all worthwhile. I would not change a thing.
And thank you so much for the hugs and prayers!
Sorry you've had such a bad week, Andrew. I love how your family, including the dogs, are really your bucket list. Cherish the time you have and may God make it a sweet and special time. Thank you for being the inspiration you are to so many.ReplyDelete
Gayl, thank you so much...and I'm just so glad that I realized that my home really IS my bucket list, before it was too late.Delete
I so appreciate your words, my friend, and your presence here.
You have learned to prioritize. Blessings to you. Soak up every second with your beloved. Blessings to you and yours.ReplyDelete
Leigh, yes...and while prioritization was a hard lesson, and made me face some truths, it is SO worth it!Delete
Thanks so much for being here, and blessings back!
I love how you make us rethink the present. It all matters in this moment that we do not lose one second with those we love. Sending love to you and Barbara. This comment is for last week. I'll hop over tomorrow to do tomorrows. Thank you for kind words. #fmfpartyReplyDelete
Carolina, thank you so much for this! Love back, from both of us. And the dogs, too.Delete
Yes, and the cats. Can't forget them