“It is a curious thing, the death of a loved one. We all know that our time in this world is limited, and that eventually all of us will end up underneath some sheet, never to wake up. And yet it is always a surprise when it happens to someone we know. It is like walking up the stairs to your bedroom in the dark, and thinking there is one more stair than there is. Your foot falls down, through the air, and there is a sickly moment of dark surprise as you try and readjust the way you thought of things.” ― Lemony Snicket, Horseradish
This blog began with encouragement from my children and friends as a way to document my journey with living on Stop Hunger Now meals and my experiences with working to end world hunger. That desire has lead me down many paths, some interesting, some profound and some you might call mundane.
However since that initial journey has ended to some extent, this blog seems to be changing into a kind of public journal for my thoughts, feelings and experiences in a much more personal level. I don’t know if that is a good or bad thing. It is just….well, it just is.
Tonight I have been sitting on the front porch of our new home, in our new community, among our new neighbors. I have been watching Netflix, Hulu, and viewing YouTube videos. For the past 2 weeks, I have struggled with deep-seated sadness and a feeling deep within me of pain that has threatened to manifest itself in tears, screams of frustration and other unpleasant expressions. Some of it is I miss my mother who died in 2006. And I miss my grandparents who died in 1992 and 1993. And I am hurting for my Aunt & Uncle as she battles cancer and faces a shortened life span. But it is more than that. It is a deep, painful, frustrating, ache born of a brokenness I cannot name or explain. But I am going to try and find words for it – or at least a part of it.
Those that know me know that sports are not my thing. I enjoy playing games; I enjoy attending games with others who can help me understand what I am seeing. I enjoy the excitement of the environment of a game and I REALLY enjoy the concession stands. (I need to avoid those!)
I see all the energy invested by fans. The proper clothing, the hats, jerseys, the car tags and decals, the tailgating, the expense of the tickets, the investment of energy, spirit, thought and finance. And I don’t begrudge them their fun. As for me, I love my Harley-Davidson motorcycle and I love to ride. It cost me to buy the bike, proper riding gear, fuel and other things when I ride. I often ride 5-16 hours in one day. I have invested up to 10 days riding over 4,000 miles. I understand the need to do something for pleasure and relaxation. I really do. But even doing what I love, it makes me stop and think.
We invest so much in so many things – and yet we fail to do that for things that really matter — things that can change not only our own lives, but also the lives of those around us — and not for the span of a game or a ride, but for eternity.
Today I had the honor of celebrating the life of a lady who lived 67 years. I never met her. She was only 67 years of age. She was a sister, wife, mother, and grandmother. She was as far as I can tell a very nice, loving woman. Her name is Charlene Gilmore. Her family grieves her death like every family I have ever been honored to journey with when death comes. And my heart hurts for them. And my heart hurts for many others.
In Jasper County Georgia, according to a web search, there are 13, 432 persons that call it home. And according the number frequently quoted (80%), 10,746 of those persons do not attend a house of worship or community of faith on any given Sunday. As a pastor and as a follower of Christ, that number bothers me. And not because I want the number of persons that attend the congregation I serve to be larger. (I do, but that is not exactly the point.) If there are 100 communities of faith in Jasper County, each could have 108 persons join in their church. Given that most churches are under 100 in attendance, that means each church could double those attending.
Beyond just counting the numbers, it means those of us who call ourselves Christians, followers of Christ, are not doing what we profess to do. Jesus never asked anyone to join anything. He reached out and built a relationship with everyone he met. His caring about them was contagious. It drew people to him. It changed their lives. And in changing THEIR lives, it changed the world.
I wonder what would happen if everyone were to invest just part of the time, energy, effort and finances that we use for our pleasure/recreation into building relationships with the people we meet each day. What if we actually cared about them? If when we say, “How are you?” we meant it? What if we actually got to know the cashier at Ingles? Got to know their names and about their day and about their lives? What about actually engaging in conversation with those in the waiting room at the doctor or across from us at the restaurant? Would they find that meaningful? Would they desire to know why we cared? Would they come find out about this Jesus we claim to follow and model our lives after for themselves?
I am preaching a series of messages about the Law of Influence. We are about half way through the series. The sermons are drawn from a book written by King Duncan. I have shared these messages in other churches – it is good material. The law states: “One life touches another life and potentially both lives are changed. One life touches another life and potentially the world is changed.” This is the way Jesus touched those around him. And the world was changed. And the world continues to be changed – by those that follow his example.
It breaks my heart; it creates great sadness in my spirit to see what could be. We worry about who will win a championship, a game, a tournament, a contest — and we don’t consider that our friends, neighbors, clients are going to spend eternity in hell if they don’t life the life of righteousness. There are differences of opinion about what does and does not constitute a life of righteousness – but living outside the Biblical guidelines and example of Jesus matters – for eternity.
We worry about taking leisure time, vacations, cruises, bike rides – but not about sharing how our lives have been made better, the miracles of healing we have experienced or witnessed, the broken relationships that have been mended, the truly awesomeness of life if lived in relationship with Christ. We would rather talk about the game, the last great meal we had, the new toy we purchased, and the last trip we took than talk about what God has done for us.
Maybe that is the genesis of the pain I feel deep down. That I don’t feel like I have done what I could, what I should – that I have not cared enough to talk with those in my sphere of influence about their relationship or lack of relationship with God.
I was honored to have that kind of conversation with the Gilbert family over the last 2 days. I hope I was a good representative of God and that they saw HIS love expressed through me. Our conversation revealed that their family was very much like my own — that we were not too different. And I hope they will seek out a community of faith as they work through their grief and find that what I shared about God giving them comfort, strength and healing through others who follow Christ to be true.
I don’t know what it will take, but those of us who claim Jesus as Lord and Savior better start acting like it – or we will have a lot of explaining to do when we stand before the throne of Judgment. And contrary to what the world believes, and what some of the popular church leaders are teaching – there will be a time of accounting. It is plainly spelled out in scripture.
My heart hurts for so many who could find life much more joyful, rewarding, comforting, healing, abundant – if they only could hear about the love of God that manifested itself in Jesus – the Christ – our Savior.
“When it comes time to die, be not like those whose hearts are filled with the fear of death, so when their time comes they weep and pray for a little more time to live their lives over again in a different way. Sing your death song, and die like a hero going home.” — Chief Aupumut, Mohican. 1725
I began this Blog to journal my experiences living on Stop Hunger Now meals and the work of this wonderful organization. That journey was incredible and has enriched my life, the lives of my family, and provided much-needed food for those in need.
However, it has been a long time since I have written anything. I have been kind of experiencing a wilderness time in my spiritual life. I have moved to a new place of ministry, a new community and many new things.
For the past several days, maybe even weeks, I have wrestled with a number of things I have seen in the news and happening in the world. I don’t really want to get into political or social debate. But I do feel a need to just speak my feelings and see where that might lead me.
I have watched persons I respect stand up for a person convicted of a crime be sentenced to death and ultimately executed. And while I understand their place, and to a large extent agree with much they have to say — I have to ask about the person who was killed. I have to ask about the fact that actions have consequences — sometimes very harsh consequences that do not arrive until much time has passed. In the face of words about God’s mercy, redemption, repentance, forgiveness, I have to ask about Samson, Judas, and others.
Samson was loved by God, given wonderful gifts. But he could not resist his urges and women. He sinned and as a result had his eyes gouged out, was put in prison pushing a mill stone. In time, he realized his sin, repented and was forgiven by God and restored. What we often miss in the story is the fact that his eyes were never restored. They were gouged out as a result of his sin. They were never given back. AND, as he in obedience acted on God’s behalf as a forgiven person — his life was forfeited in the process.
I look at Judas and how he tried to force God’s hand and the result was not only the betrayal of Jesus and his crucifixion — but Judas, in his guilt lost his life.
Now I don’t know how to really reconcile these three events. What I know is that actions have consequences and being repentant and forgiven doesn’t always stop the arrival of those consequences. What I know is that being forgiven we have resources to deal with the consequences we would NOT have if we were not forgiven.
Tonight I am bothered by the new shooting in Oregon. Already everyone is trying to make it political. And there is certainly a political piece to it. After we grieve, pray, weep and grieve some more I have to ask — will we ever learn that the tool used to kill has no emotion or investment in the act. The act is the choice of a person or people. And almost every time it is someone with mental health issues. We talk about it for a few sound bites at first. But in the end it always comes down to a debate about gun laws. Time, money, energy and people get used and yet we never get around to doing anything about doing a better job taking care of those with mental health issues. Getting treatment is expensive while getting medical treatment has gotten more accessible. I pay a $30 copay for medical care. When my ex-wife needed mental health care we paid 50% of the cost and had to fight to get coverage of the medication. Not to mention the continued stigma that goes with a diagnosis.
The guy that killed so many childcare in Sandy Hook broke some 41 gun laws. Law number 42 would not have prevented it. But if everyone in his life had paid better attention to his mental struggles, and if the diagnosis, treatment and care had been better it might have been prevented. The gun wasn’t the problem. Days after this act another mentally ill person used a knife to kill almost as many persons. The weapon isn’t the issue. The lack of medical care and support is very much the issue.
Again, I am not looking for a debate or to get into a back and forth argument. These are just my thoughts as I, along with many, wrestle with the events of the last few weeks. May God give us wisdom. May God give us courage. May God be merciful to all involved. And may we try to discuss the real problem and not what is easiest to point to and argue about.
Everyone is invited to join us in the celebration! We have raised $2,983.65 as of Tuesday lunch to fund meals for starving children around the world. This will allow us to package 11,935 meals!! What a great effort!!!
If you didn’t make your gift, or you have a friend, family membed, co-worker or someone else that would like to contribute, it’s not too late! They can drop their gift by the church office or make an online contribution at: http://events.stophungernow.org/ChatsworthFirstUMC
We need you to join us Sunday, April 27 at 4 PM to package these meals. We will gather and receive instructions and then actually prepare the meals. We need 40-50 folks at least to make this a success.
I could also use 5-10 strong workers to meet me at 3 PM to unload the truck and set up the materials. If you can lift 50 pounds, I can use your help!!
This whole process should take us about 2 hours to complete — plus set up/tear down.
Don’t miss this wonderful opportunity. You need to register if you plan to participate. The easiest way is on line at: http://events.stophungernow.org/ChatsworthFirstUMC
Use this same link to register or make a donation. Pass this along to everyone and especially those you know who do not do email. We want EVERYONE to have a chance to participate.
“Hunger is not a problem. It is an obscenity. How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”- Anne Frank, Holocaust Victim
I must confess. I have had a bad attitude lately. Returning from a mission trip to the Philippines, Rev. Maria Bowers shared one experience with me. The local church in Manila gathered the children in the area once a month for a meal, to weigh the children, and to access their over-all health. In conversation with our District Superintendent, the local Bishop heard about how Stop Hunger Now might provide a relationship that would allow the children to have a meal daily instead of monthly. This could radically change their lives. The Bishop had not heard of Stop Hunger Now. And he was very interested.
Maria and our DS mentioned my work with Stop Hunger Now and that I might be part of connecting the two groups. Imagine my surprise and excitement that I might play a role in this wonderful ministry connection.
I made contact with Stop Hunger Now staff to learn who was the connection person for international efforts that should be involved in this conversation and then reached out for information. I scheduled a meeting with the DS and made the ride to the District Office to see what could be done.
And then my world crashed. As Herzen, our DS, and I talked, I learned I was “late to the party” as it were. He had already had several conversations with Stop Hunger Now staff, the Bishop in Manila and others and 2 in country packing events had already been set up, funding had been provided from our Bishop and Annual Conference and everything was already in place for this relationship to get up and running.
While this is all very exciting and a great thing to happen – I left that meeting crushed. I had hoped to be part of this process. I was hoping to participate in making things happen. I envisioned being a connecting part of this ministry.
And that is where my frustration began. I. Instead of just being grateful then children would eat, that the Bishop and Stop Hunger Now had made a connection and an ongoing relationship had been created; I was focused on how I had been left out of the process. And I let it create negative emotions in my spirit and in my attitude.
You know, sometimes we see a place of ministry, we dream of a new ministry effort, a new venture to share God with someone, some group, in some way – and then we find out someone has already to that, someone has “beat us to the punch,” someone else made the effort first and now we are left just standing there wondering what to do.
The thing we need to focus on is not how WE got “left out” but rather we need to rejoice that God used someone else to make it happen. That God’s love and resources are already being made available to those in need, that needs are being met quickly and effectively. We should shout, “Glory, Hallelujah!!” rather than words of disappointment and frustration.
I am ashamed and embarrassed at my own reaction in this situation. I responded with frustration and ego – not joy and thanksgiving. And I should know better. And, that leads me to remember what we seek to learn in the season of Lent.
We take time during Lent to focus on our lives and where we have not been all God desires for us. And not just to acknowledge our shortcomings, but also to look at them, repent of them, seek God’s forgiveness, and then take intentional steps to change our lives to do better in the future. We are to turn our lives around and deliberately move in a new direction. A direction God will provide so that we can grow into a better person and walk more closely with God in the future.
My attitude has improved. I have repented of my self-centered attitude and I am truly glad so many things have already taken place to feed those who are hungry. Maybe I have taken a step towards improving the world by changing my attitude and focus.
I want to encourage you to keep putting aside your coins, your cash, and your gifts as we fill our red rice boxes during the remainder of the Lenten Season. Every penny helps. Every quarter feeds a hungry child. Make plans to be present in worship Easter Sunday so that you can place your gift on the altar as a Thanksgiving Gift in response to God’s great gift of his Son through the Resurrection. And plan to join us the next Sunday evening as we package the meals we fund to that those who are hungry may be fed. And the obscenity of a world that lets persons go hungry when there is enough food for all to eat will be brought closer to an end.
May God bless you as you move through the last days of Lent this season.
Until the next time….
The Hog Father
Making a Difference – version 2.0!
I am preparing to take a renewed journey in my life. I would like to invite you to join me as I travel. I have never been much for social media – just never felt “cool” enough. However, with the urging of a friend — and standing on the edge of a new life adventure — I’m going to see where this goes this time.
I continue to be passionate about a few of things in life — my motorcycle & world hunger are 2 of them. Quite a disparate group, right?
I am privileged to own (make payments on) a 2009 Harley-Davidson Ultra Classic Motorcycle (Pastor + Harley = The HOG Father). Since December 29, 2008 I have ridden 84,595 miles. The longest ride was 2,450 miles in 65 hours going from Rydal, Georgia to Canada to Ocracoke Island, NC to Rydal, Georgia in 3 days — just because I wanted to. And that is part of my motivation for this blog and my concern for the next two things. My longest single day ride was 1, 096 miles from Santa Fe, NM to Roswell, NM across Texas to Texarkana, LA down to Alexandria, LA only stopping for food, gas, and, well – you know.
At the 2010 North GA Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church I learned about an organization called Stop Hunger Now. This is an organization that provides meals, primarily to children, for only 25 cents per serving. A team of 40-50 persons can package 10,000 meals in around 2 hours. I can wrap my head around that — 25 cents feeds a child.
March 5, 2014 marks the beginning Lent, Ash Wednesday – the 40 days before Easter. Lent is a time where Fasting is encouraged as a spiritual discipline. It is not the abstinence from the food that is the purpose. It is using time typically spent preparing, eating and cleaning up from a meal to meditate on God’s word, God’s purpose, God’s will for one’s life; reading the Scriptures; or otherwise growing in one’s faith.
It is my intention, for a second time, to live on the same food that I seek to offer to those in need. If it is good enough for them — it ought to be good enough for me. It is formulated for starving children — I am not starving nor am I a child (childish but not a child). I expect eating the equivalent of 6 servings per day (about 1,500+ calories). However, if I am successful in this effort at the same level I was the first time, I will live on 1-2 servings amounting to 220-440 calories per day. Once again, I am seeking to use this experience as a journey towards understanding while I grow more and more aware of my place of privilege. Forty days to grow deeper in my understanding of the scarcity of food.
This blog will once again be a place to share my experience. It will be a place to work out what it means to be part of the privileged class in the world. It will be a place to see how I can combine my love of riding with rasing awareness about the plight of the majority of the citizens of the world A place to share facts and information about hunger (and just maybe some riding tips and experiences) and how everyone can be part of the solution.
In short: the solution already exists to solve world hunger — only we, the world community refuse to deploy them. (More on that in the days ahead.)
I ask for your prayers, your support (donations can be made to Chatsworth First UMC, P O Box 152, Chatsworth, GA 30705) and that you join me on this journey.
Until the next time….The HOG Father
I know I have written before about changes. Changes in my life, the world, people, etc. But today I am thinking about change again.
Partly because I am sitting in a new office, in a new town, at a new church, serving a new congregation — but more because I saw a change yesterday that demands my attention.
I was honored to stand by the bed of one of the matriarchs of Chatsworth First UMC as the decision to remove life support was made and carried out. This saint of the church had grown older, frail and had suffered a broken hip as is common. Having been cleared for surgery, she was given a small dose of medication to put her to sleep and in an unusual response, she had a very significant reaction to the medication.
For some 6 minutes, she had no heartbeat. This lead, as it commonly does, to a series of major organ failures and eventually to the place where her body could no longer successfully sustain life. The family in love and concern gave the consent to remove mechanical help and allowed nature to take its course.
We had gathered around her bed, surrounded by medical equipment, medical staff, and a very real presence of the Holy Spirit. We offered a prayer for God to touch her, the family, and the medical community. And then we turned it over to the hospital staff & God.
Medication that was keeping her blood pressure artificially raised and the ventilator were removed and nature began to once again move in its own way. And we watched, and we waited, and we prayed, and tears were shed…….
AND WE WATCHED AS GOD SHOWED UP IN A VERY REAL WAY TO RECEIVE HIS DAUGHTER BACK INTO A PLACE WHERE ILLNESS, HEARTACHE, LONELINESS, PAIN, AND DISEASE DO NOT HAVE A PLACE AND WHERE TIME IS MEANINGLESS.
We watched as her earthly tent was taken down and she clothed herself in glory as scripture promises. We listened trying to hear God speak words of welcome as she made the change, the transition, the move from time-bound, temporal living to life abundant and eternal. Unlike our family moving to Chatsworth, she carried nothing from this life to the next. For there she has everything and more.
Change is not always bad, Change can be good. Change can bring new opportunities, new relationships, new skills, new joys and newness of life. Change can be the answer to prayer.
May God have mercy on us as we often resist changes, and may we find in those changes of life the very presence of a loving, merciful, gracious God.
Rest in the arms of your loving Heavenly Father, Miss Ann Hemphill.
Until the next time….The Hog Father,
Sometimes it seems impossible to explain why working with Stop Hunger Now matters so much to me, why I am so passionate about raising awareness of the issue of hunger in the world today, why it is maddening to consider that it is not a shortage of food that causes persons to suffer from hunger, why I try so hard to get folks to see how easy it is to give these meals for only a quarter per meal.
Back in March of this year I had the opportunity to return to Nicaragua with Stop Hunger Now to see again and in new ways how these meals are used through ORPHANetwork to feed those in need. While on that trip I got to meet and get to know the band Willet. These guys have used their musical abilities, and speaking abilities to change the world. They have developed a passion for feeding the hunger among other charitable efforts.
Today, Jeremy Willet posted a comment on Facebook that really touched my heart. Broke it actually. And I want to share his word with you. It puts into words many things I have tried to say, and that I feel. I hope they touch you as well. For more about this group, visit their website at http://www.willetmission.com.
I need it because I’m angry.
There’s no other way to describe how I feel.
Without [ ] from others , my feelings might offend.
I try to have [ ] with others when they hurt me, but tonight, its hard.
During my last trip to Ghana just a few weeks ago, my wife, Kat and I traveled to the community where our son, Evans, was born. It is a community called Bolgatanga. While there, we saw the extreme poverty that our son was born into. We witnessed the generational poverty that has plagued his family, and many other families in the area for years. We heard countless stories of children suffering from malnutrition, malaria, HIV/AIDS, and special needs. We learned about the aggressive movement of hinduism throughout the community, and met Christian missionaries from the U.S. that are working daily to advance the true Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Prior to traveling to this community, we learned of a young girl that was extremely sick. While in the village for several days, we were able to go and meet her. She was so frail and underweight due to malnutrition that we carefully held her in our laps and tried to comfort her as she looked up at us with her big, beautiful eyes. I know it sounds weird, and potentially cliche, but you could see the face of God when you looked at her.
When we left Bolgatanga, we were filled with joy because we passed court for our adoption…but we left with mixed emotions knowing the many children that would still struggle to survive in this area… boys and girls just like the one we held.
Today we learned that this little girl died.
God, please give me [ ]. I really don’t want to offend anyone, but this hurts.
Do you know why she died?
She died because of starvation…from not having enough food for her little body to operate.
She died because we closed our eyes. She died because the “system” of orphan care is broken. She died because her story was never told. She died because while you and I went for “seconds”, she had none. She died because somewhere along the line, we made “missions” a line item in our Church budgets, and felt it only deserved a small % of our income. She died because we blamed our complacency on the false-truth that, “we have starvation here in America…we should help our own first”. She died because we forgot why we exist.
As followers of Jesus, we were created to worship.
We love to boil “worship” down to our Sunday-morning-U2-sounding-praise-teams jamming out to 3 songs and a offertory…but God says “away with the noise of your worship!” In Amos Chapter 5, He continues by saying “what I want is JUSTICE to roll down like a river, RIGHTEOUSNESS like a never failing stream”.
God, please give me [ ] .
There is no justice in the death of a child due to something we could have prevented.
Do you know that this little girl had the most beautiful name?
I couldn’t believe it when we found out her name was [ ].
I’ll never forget that girl. Jesus please give her a special place at the table tonight.
It’s weird you know? Life just doesn’t make sense without [ Grace ] .”
The Hog Father is on the road today. I’m taking the scenic route down Highway 19 towards Florida. My ultimate destination today will be Auburndale, FL. After a pleasant day riding down, a good night’s sleep in a beautiful home (thanks Al & Dee), I will pay a visit to the Orlando Stop Hunger Now facility.
I will have an opportunity to meet the team, see their base of operations, maybe treat them to lunch (don’t tell them it will be SHN rice). Then a dreaming and planning time about a major PR Fund Raising event for next summer.
After that, a great ride home in time to celebrate my daughter’s graduation from GA Highlands College.
Be on the lookout fur the Stop Hunger Now Harley and the Hog Father. Honk and wave if you see me.
Until the next time….The Hog Father
I don’t know if you have noticed lately, but around here, the winds have blown often and strong. My mother once said it was God sweeping the sky and the tree tops to clean things up. And if you looked around the next day, the ground would be covered with dead branches and leaves and such as if God had truly cleaned up the tree tops.
In my world, the winds of change have blown. Change in my work with Stop Hunger Now, change in my personal sphere of life, and change in my place of ministry.
I have dreamed of a GREAT RIDE. A motorcycle ride to every SHN site in the US. And at various times that ride seems like it will happen, and not happen — depending on how the wind was blowing at the time. As part of this, I will be looking at a ride to the Orlando, FL site this week. I had the opportunity to ride to the Jackson, MS warehouse in April and had a great visit with Matt Casteel and Pat Ware. They had just moved into a larger space.
I look forward to meeting the folks in Orlando and seeing their place of operations and learn how God is using them to change the world.
Winds of change are blowing in my sphere of life in several ways. My daughter is moving from Middle School to High School. We are seeing her close the chapter of her life in middle school as the last concerts for All State Chorus, District Honor Chorus, County Honor Chorus/Band and such take place. And we see change in looking forward to High School and marching band. My BABY is no longer a baby and is getting bigger and smarter with each day.
I had to replace the family van last week. Meridy and I have begun conversations on how we would replace her car — given it is the older vehicle. However, it turns our the van had terminal issues. After putting $1,500 in the car, we had to put $500 in the van and after evaluation learned it needed nearly $2,000-$3,000 in repairs — to maybe get 40-50,000 more miles out of it. Not a good investment. SO, we now have a new vehicle and a new, larger monthly payment.
Other changes in my sphere include trying to raise the funds to do our 3rd year of meal packing at East Coweta Middle School with the 6th Grade. After it looking like it would NOT happen, it now looks promising. With several people making gifts, we now are sure to package at least 10,000 meals and if everything comes together the projected project of 20,000 meals. Praise the Lord!
Changes in my place of ministry include some interesting opportunities to have deep spiritual conversations lately in unusual places and unexpected times. The biggest change will be a move to a new pastorate. For those not familiar, United Methodist pastors are assigned to their place of ministry each year. I have been with the people of Senoia UMC for the last 3 years. Due to financial issues, it is necessary to take a new place of ministry to allow SUMC to lower their salary to a level that allows for funding ministry — which is the purpose of the local church.
I am not ready to leave Senoia, but it seems to be the time — so we begin to pack and dream. If we HAVE TO LEAVE Senoia, then the idea of serving the people of Murray County, GA — namely those who worship and engage in ministry at Chatsworth First UMC breeds excitement.
We are excited about that which is new, that which we believe God calls us to, that which will be our new world. The winds blow strong sometimes. The winds blow in seemingly uncontrolled ways sometimes. But even if we do not know where they come from, where they are going, or why they even blow — we know that they are in God’s control and if we will simply trim our sails properly — we will travel safely and securely to our destination.
I hope you will continue to follow this blog. I don’t really know where it will go, but I will try to be more faithful to post regularly. I will continue to be honest in my thoughts. and I hope you will take a minute to comment, share with a friend or two, and if you can spare a few quarters — feed a child.
The place to give for our ECMS event is: http://www.events.stophungernow.org/ecms. All donations are helpful and will make sure we have a great event for these students.
The place to give or sign up as a sponsor for THE GREAT RIDE is to drop my a note (and check if you can) to P.O. Box 98, Senoia, GA 30276.
Thanks for your time, your prayers, your support, and your donations. I will share about my latest trip to Nicaragua in a bit……
Until the next time…..The Hog Father