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Love and marriage are the greatest adventures in life, and they point they way to our relationship with the Almighty.

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Thursday, November 15, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 540 - I Didn't Come This Far To Only Come This Far

Brave words, these.

I didn't come this far to only come this far.

They speak of determination, to play the game...and win.

But they're not true,at least not always. Sometimes the game wins, and your king is toppled on the chessboard.

And then you have to learn.

First comes the test, and then the lesson.

The lesson is this, and it was perfectly expressed by Paul in 2 Timothy 4:7 (NIV):

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.

Our path in this life is not determined by our goals and our ambitions. It's determined by God, and only He knows where the finish line is.

Our job - our only job - is to keep going, with faith, hope, and love.

There's no 'to only come this far'. Whether we dash across God's finish line, or crawl across it, incontinent and vomiting blood, when we give God everything we have, we've won.

Cancer will beat me at life's game; the past week has taught me this.

But if I stay cheerful, holding up others in my words and prayers, and remaining grateful to God for the blessings that surround me, I will win the Great Game.

There's no 'I' in loser.

But there is one in winner.

Music from Matchbox 20, with Let's See How Far We've Come.


Thanks to Carol Ashby, Blessed Are The Pure Of Heart is back on Kindle, and will be available in paperback soon.

Friends are everything. I couldn't have done it.

Marley, the canine waif from Afghanistan, whom WE helped save, has a Facebook page! Please drop by to see how happy he is today.



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.








Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 541 - Walled In, Raised Up

There's something about being constantly short of breath that's awfully claustrophobic.

Your world constricts; the other side of the room is a long way away, and the gate to the street's an expedition.

I usually try to open the gate for Barb when she leaves for work, and to have it open when she comes back. It's one of the few privileges I still have, and I'm not able to do that most days. It's just too long a walk.

But the funny thing is that as the walls close in, and my available square footage decreases, my world grows in height, and I can see God better.

I can see that He's keeping me from the discouragement I would have expected here, and that it's His influence, through the small bright moments that come my way, that keeps me cheerful, and looking forward to tomorrow.

Certainly it's not me; though possessed of a cheerful and upbeat nature, I'm quite well aware that what I'm going through is bad, bad enough to crush any Cheerful Charlie into the ground.

An it threatens that or me; I have my moments.

But those moments don't last. I feel my heart drawn upward, even when I'm sitting on the floor in physical misery, coughing and coughing.

The brightness is still there, all around me, lifting me to the Light.

Music from Josh Groban, with You Raise Me Up.


Thanks to Carol Ashby, Blessed Are The Pure Of Heart is back on Kindle, and will be available in paperback soon.

Friends are everything. I couldn't have done it.

Marley, the canine waif from Afghanistan, whom WE helped save, has a Facebook page! Please drop by to see how happy he is today.



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.








Monday, November 12, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 540 - Don't Ever Stop

Even I can't maintain a lot of optimism here.

Hope, yes. I hope for a miracle. I hope for the grace to allow me to keep doing hat I have to do to help Barb and the dogs for as long as I can last.

But optimism's a harder road.

And yet.

In the face of high fevers and a throat-and-gut ripping cough, and chest pain and other things I'd rather not describe in this cancerous smorgasbord, there's something else.

Optimism isn't how you feel.

It's how you act.

It's what you do.

It's looking up and forward in your speech, holding to the promise of the moment, and the dreams of tomorrow.

It's working toward goals...like next year's rose garden...that you may never see. But working anyway. (No, I'm not a gardener...I just thought this would be a better example than 'fabricating aeroplane parts.)

There's no perfection here. I get discouraged, and say things like, "This is NOT gonna end well." But I try to say it with a smile, and pass it off as a joke.

It's OK to slip. It's just not OK to stop.

I mean, look at Ps. 1:1 (NIV):

Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers,

Two of these involve stopping. So, like Churchill said,

If you're going through hell, keep going.

And what better music than Fleetwood Mac, with Don't Stop?


Thanks to Carol Ashby, Blessed Are The Pure Of Heart is back on Kindle, and will be available in paperback soon.

Friends are everything. I couldn't have done it.

Marley, the canine waif from Afghanistan, whom WE helped save, has a Facebook page! Please drop by to see how happy he is today.



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.












Thursday, November 8, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 539 - Not Faith For The Journey; Faith For NOW {FMF}

If you had asked me in my previous life how I would retain faith in a loving and merciful God...or any God...through terminal cancer, I would have scratched my beard and shook my head and then spit out a bunch of tobacco juice.

Which is Chinese Redneck for I have no idea.

But I know the answer now, and it's simple.

You find faith in the next moment. Look too far, and you're messed up.

It's like walking a rocky trail. Look down for the next step, and you're fine. Watch the horizon, and you're in twisted-ankle-land.

You don't need faith for the journey. You need faith for the right now.

I don't know what I will face tomorrow, but I can hold my faith to my heart by appreciating God's blessings in the moment.

Blessings like the friendly, gentle contractor who's finishing off some tornado-repair damage to the house. He's replacing some drywall today, and the dogs love him.

Blessings like a good movie, The Last Jedi, which takes me to a different place, and may the Force be with you!

Sometimes you have to dig. It could be worse. I could be slow, soft, and ugly.

Yeah, humour helps.

But the point is that, like the lilies of the field or the wandering and muttering Israelites, I don't have to worry about tomorrow.

God will provide.

Grace is manna, and there will be more tomorrow.

Just for fun of it, here are The Searchers with Love Potion #9. Enjoy!


Thanks to Carol Ashby, Blessed Are The Pure Of Heart is back on Kindle, and will be available in paperback soon.

Friends are everything. I couldn't have done it.

Marley, the canine waif from Afghanistan, whom WE helped save, has a Facebook page! Please drop by to see how happy he is today.



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.











Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 538 - Influences

I'd like to that you all for your prayers; I'm experiencing really crushing chest pain (not angina), fever, and chills, and writing is hard. But being thankful, well, that's easy.

In deference to the "it's hard to write" excuse, I'm recycling a comment I used at today's Steve laube Agency blog, The Book That Changed My Life, penned by the inimitable Bob Hostetler.

"I wonder if any of you have had this experience, that something you read fundamentally changed you, and you didn’t realize the change until years later, looking back?
"A long time ago I read Richard Collier’s book on the Battle of Britain, and in it was a description of how badly the Luftwaffe’s Stuka squadrons were mauled by the British in the summer skies of 1940.
"Their commander, Wolfram von Richthofen (cousin to the Red Baron of WW1) displayed typical Prussian warmth and compassion, and put up a sign in his headquarters:
"“The last man will go again.”
"When I read it, I probably thought, “Well, HUH!” and moved on. But I realize now that it became the harsh lodestone to my heart, and formed the basis of the faith that today keeps me going through experiences I would not have wanted to imagine.
"When the tears are wrung out, you’re overwhelmed by a gutting fear, and the only prayer you have left is a sob, you’ve still got to cowboy up and face the dawn."

Thanks to Carol Ashby, Blessed Are The Pure Of Heart is back on Kindle, and will be available in paperback soon.

Friends are everything. I couldn't have done it.

Marley, the canine waif from Afghanistan, whom WE helped save, has a Facebook page! Please drop by to see how happy he is today.



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.