Hope you'll indulge me a collection of random thoughts this week:
My week got off to a sweet start last Monday as I stopped by Calvary Baptist Church on Lane Parkway for prayer and coffee. It's not my home church, but I wouldn't let that keep me away from a blessing. I skipped the coffee part, but got much love from pastor Tom Henry and his team. They are 'serving' each Monday between 6 and 8 a.m., and I'm looking forward to visiting them again tomorrow.
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The featured artists in my CD changer right now are Caedmon's Call, Mercy Me, Bebo Norman and Justin Beiber. There's a song lyric that's struck a chord with me lately, and I find myself replaying the song all day as I drive around town. In One Trick Pony, Mercy Me sings:
If I hear just one more time
That I should try and be more open-minded
I think I just might scream
The world says this is all there is
Yet I believe the One who says there's life after this
Now tell me how much more open can my mind be?
The world (and the internet) are filled with folks taking a stance on this thing or that, and along the way people of faith are almost universally regarded by them as being hopelessly close-minded. Yet, I believe with all my heart a story that is so impossible, so implausible - well, if you're out and about and hear someone shout, "Glory!" it might be me. (If you hear "Baby! Baby! Oh-oh!" it might be Margie.)
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Talked to Carolyn Comacho this morning and Alex is doing pretty well. He's been in some pain, but managed to visit the Grand Old Opry last Friday and was a special guest of the Predators at a game on Saturday. He got lots of autographs from the players. The family hopes to make that trip to Gatlinburg very soon.
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If you watch Food Network long enough you'll hear the phrase, "There's no crying in the kitchen." I hope that standard of professional demeanor doesn't transfer to the newsroom, because there were definite tears this week as news of the car accident involving two Cascade seniors evolved Thursday morning. The Marcouliers have become treasured friends of the Simmons family this year, and our hearts, prayers and thoughts are with Mike, Kim, and the rest of their family as they face Michael's recovery.
My prayers are also with the Hasty and McFarlin families in the loss of Drew, as well as with the Cascade community who inexplicably have faced the loss of a student each year for many years running now. None of my words may be cleverly crafted enough just now to sound like anything other than an empty platitude. I take comfort in knowing both of these to be strong Christian families, who enjoy fellowship with brothers and sisters in faith who will surround them with love in the days to come.
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I wrote last week about how blessings are often apparent with much hindsight. I shared a revelation on my Facebook page this week, "I'm happy," which my friends celebrated with many "likes." Tommy and I are emerging from a long season of struggle, and everywhere I look I can see provision and blessings. I am thankful for where I am, how He's brought me here and where He's taking me.