Willohroots


I miss fitting in, am I a misfit?
October 30, 2009, 19:05
Filed under: blessings, Christ | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Thomas Grunfeldmisfit_4Thomas Grunfeld is my favorite taxidermist.  He has taken the Jackalope to new heights.  I really relate to these images.  Quite often I have felt that I too am an assemblage of cast off parts.

In my search for a new career,  OK,   job,  I  get the weirdest comments about my resume from interviewers.  ” So you were an Electrician for over twenty years, went from being  Pa.’s youngest licensed Journeyman electrician,  to an Electrical Inspector, then a teacher of robotics at a  junior college , yet you have a Psychology degree , spent more time as a volunteer Fire Chief  than in any kind of job,  worked as a banker for 12 years managing branches,  and you say you have been a Pastor since 2004, and now you want a career in with us?”  I can’t imagine why they are confused.  From this side of the desk it all seems so logical.

At least there is this degree of consistency,  my ministry resume is just as odd.  For years I did not go to any church planting meetings, as I did not think I was a church planter,  as I was in a pulpit of a church that was built 25 years ago.  Now I am in a church that is a new plant that started four years ago. It is the same  Church building, but a new church was born there.   I was just along for the ride.  There were no meetings or trainings offered for people serving in a church that was being reinvented.  Church Strengthening,  yes,  church Planting,  yes,  Church Reinventing or Church Rebirth, not so much.

I have been preaching the Gospel  as pulpit supply on and off for 32 years.  I never went to seminary, and that was by choice.  There is a  conservative Baptist dispensational  seminary almost in my back yard, and even though we preach from the same book and share so many values, I find an attitude there that repulses me.  I have looked back in the history of a few local churches and found that they were doing great, until a preacher from that Seminary was called to serve there.  After that church growth would cease and families would be torn apart, all in the name of Jesus.  As I looked into other sources of education I found two schools.  One so loosey goosey that scripture was a suggestion,  the other so sure of their doctrine that they would choose it over Jesus, and in fact I think some of them did. I then judged all seminaries by this one.  I am also nonjudgmental.

In most areas of doctrine people say I am quite conservative,  but I am comfortable with gays and addicts and criminals, and atheists,  many of whom really are nicer than I  by any standard.   I do not like liberal theology,  nor do I like the cocky conservative who is so sure of himself that he would advise the Apostles.  I am comfortable with reading conservatives, but would rather associate with liberals.  The conservatives think I am aberrant, the liberals think I am conservative.Neither side will buy me lunch.

I have never been ordained,  as the only groups whose ordination I would accept would reject me for some of my beliefs.  My head does not fit in the jar. I have sat on ordination councils, but it is not likely I will ever be ordained.  There does not seem to be too much of a problem with this in practice,  no one really seems to care.  When I was an Atheist I was ordained in the Universal Church Of   Life, as a professor of mine thought that if a bunch of ministers of this group met at his home , it would be tax exempt.   Ordained as an atheist,  but not as a believer.
What a misfit!

The people I baptize become Baptists, yet I was baptized Church of Christ.  I was dedicated as a Methodist, but was never a dedicated Methodist.   I play guitar in a praise band with drums and all, but I personally prefer the old hymns of the faith.  I serve communion with Matzo and Welches, and yet think that if there is  no Real Presence, something is awfully wrong.  I do  not believe in divorce, but the best elders I have worked with were divorced men. Divorce ends a marriage, not necessarily a ministry.

I preach out of the Holman, but only because I bought them for $3.00 a piece.  I love the King James, but lean on the NASB, study out of the ESV and put up with the NIV.  In the 70’s, after King James study and them discovering the NASB I really enjoyed the Good News bible.  I taught with a guy who claimed he was saved with the Good News,   and soon after his conversion the Holy Ghost told him the only translation was KJV.  Go figure .

To me the Catholic church has let down thousands of people,  so poorly taught them that the vast majority know very little of the Gospel, and fall into unbelief.  A couple weeks ago I sat in Mass  at a funeral and had a wonderful time of prayer and worship.  I disagreed with a couple points of the homily,  but the priest has such a loving attitude it did not bother me. It was all about Jesus and that suits me fine. I’m not turning, but I’m not all that turned off either.

I tell my  wife who is of Italian heritage that my Welsh heritage of song is superior to all, yet I listen to this, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f2SZ-nCBmsU Nice as it is, it can’t compare to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R_XJFp5JXpk

So none of the pieces fit together.   Well I have been given a great gift of faith,  I know that my loving, Father will not allow a sparrow to fall, but that He knows.  Even if it is a funny looking sparrow.

Thomas Grunfeld misfit_8

Thomas Grunfeld, artist for today's images.



Baby Jessica Update! Praise God, keep praying!
October 13, 2009, 08:49
Filed under: blessings, faith, Jesus | Tags: , , , ,
By the Grace of God, still with us!

By the Grace of God, still with us!

Patti sends us an update on our miracle girl!  This is Jessica, who was so ignored by her birth parents, that she needed to be Life flighted to Hershey Medical Neonatal Center, on the brink of death.  They neglected to give her food or water.  She is a survivor! Thank you Jesus

From Patti:

First of all I would like to thank all for your prayers to our awesome God for our sweet Jessica and Bob{[Patti’s husband, Jessica’s uncle]and myself. Don’t ever doubt that your prayers aren’t heard and answered,  and so gratefully and humbly appreciated by Bob and I.

Jessica will be 18 months old on October 21st. She is now almost 20 lbs and a healthy, bright, energetic little girl.  She is running, and talking.  She loves reading and can recognize all of the alphabet and some numbers. She knows pretty much every animal and the sound they make.

We took Jessica to an animal park/zoo.  She loved it so much.  She just laughed and pointed at all the animals and called them to come to her.  She fell in love with Twigga, the giraffe, who she got to feed carrots to. She had no fear as this huge animal bending down to her and wrapping his tongue around her little hand to take the carrot.  She laughed and wanted to keep feeding him, which she did many times.  Many people there took great joy at watching Jessica enjoying the animals.  They followed us around, some took pictures of her, one man took a video.   All had such smiles on their faces watching this little angel enjoying God’s creatures.

She is the biggest little helper.   She loves to help me cook and bake.   She is very stubborn and determined and just understands so much.   She truly is a miracle and a wonderful blessing and an amazing little girl.

October proves to be an eventful month.   Her birth father is awaiting a bench trial.   He has pleaded not guilty although the DA thinks he may end up pleading guilty at the trial.   This trial is to be within the next two weeks.   Her birth mother has her plea hearing on October 27th and is expected to plead guilty.   They both have been testing positive for drug and alcohol throughout the entire judicial process.     They had a meeting with Children and Youth and the mother showed up drunk.   Children and Youth have tried to get them to give up their parental rights, but the birth father said “it’s my kid” and they think the birth mother would have given up her rights,   but she was drunk,  and the birth father wouldn’t let her alone with them.

God has been proving to me over and over again who is in charge. In my most anxious moments He wraps His arms around me and says,” be calm, I am here”.  We had the nightmare case worker, and then she went on maternity leave and we were assigned a new case worker who was a dream. In September the old case worker was back.  She called me on the phone to set up a visit and not two minutes into the conversation she was already telling me not to get my hopes up about keeping Jessica.   Well, needless to say, my asthma kicked in because of my anxiousness.   I dropped to my knees and prayed God to let me just not listen to her.   I prepared myself for this meeting by having people pray,  and I spent all morning going from room to room just praying the blood of Christ and glorifying God for all He has done and will do.   By the time the knock on the door came the Lord had me in a peaceful state,  knowing he was in control.  When Miss Nightmare  came in and sat down,  I took a deep breath and smiled.    I  asked her how she was,  and told her how Jessica was doing.   She then told me (brace yourself)  Children and Youth were going to give total custody of Jessica to us and they would be out of the picture.   What an awesome God!!!   So on October 21st (Jessica’s 18 month birthday) we have a hearing to appoint Bob and I as Jessica’s sole legal guardians.   Thank you Jesus again and again!

We will now pursue adopting her. We have no idea what it will involve. Our prayer is that both parents will give up their parental rights. Maybe once they are convicted and jailed they will realize what they have done and if they care anything at all about Jessica they will realize that she is happy and thriving and in the best place she could be.

Please keep us in continued prayer. We look forward to adopting our little Jessica. Pray that we have wisdom in what to do and who to go to.

I thank Pastor Will and Dawn for their constant prayers and help. I thank my family at Dayspring Bible and also all of you who I wish I could meet and just give you a big hug.

Thank you so much! God bless you all!

Patty