Archive | April, 2010

Live from the VA Clinic

30 Apr

How bored am I?? I am sitting in the waiting area at the Gvl VA Clinic. Waiting. They let me go back for his nurse assessment but the doc threw me out.

Interestingly enough, the nurse pulled me back into her office to give me a speech about Mom needing help and not being able to do this alone. I told her I’ve been giving her the same speech until I am blue in the face. She told me it’s time to put my foot down.

I do agree but wonder how well she knows the case! She said “If he has another stroke it will probably be a bad one.”. I told her he alledgedly has not had a stroke (or so we’ve been told).

Wow. And my stress level was just starting to come down.

On the other hand, I just blogged this from my iPhone. Cool!

Big Day Ahead

29 Apr

Today I will point the car back toward the place where the Blue Ridge Mountains yawn their greatness … For you novices, that is Clemson.  Krissy took her last exam last night and we can’t wait to see what her grades are!!!  :-p

ALSO, while there we will spend some time with Mom and Dad AT HOME!!  There is more work to be done AND this weekend we are renting a ramp van to let Mom try one out.  If she likes it, the next task will be a purchase.  We’ve already been working towards that, but if it goes well, we will get really serious about it.

My Purchase, vol 3

29 Apr

Okay, now I find out they might have modified a service report … Hmmm.  Not trusting that dealership too much right now.

My Purchase, vol. 2

28 Apr

After discussing with several friends, apparently (whether the dude was telling the truth or not) they DO have those kind of issues in car dealerships.  HUH … I would’ve NEVER guessed it!

What was it Jesus said about “A house divided can never stand??”  Maybe things like that are why our world is so messed up right now (especially our economy).  But, then again, I am no economist.  Just a poor dirt farmer … err … I mean a simple man of the cloth.

My Purchase

27 Apr

Yes, I used Twitter yesterday to call out for prayer.  I really do believe God will be with us, even in the most stressful times of life.  I ran through the gauntlet yesterday at a dealership in Florence.

Diana was in last week for some warranty work on her car and mentioned to our service guy (with whom we have a pretty good relationship) that we were looking for something to replace Gretta the Jetta (Krissy’s long lost VW), but we were not looking to spend a fortune.  (OK, we had already decided if we could find something that Krissy would take Ramone (MY Accord) and I would drive an older car for a while.  One of the sacrifices a parent makes who has one in college and one about to get his driving permit.)

Well, as luck would have it, they had just received an older car that was immaculate.  And it WAS!  And it was in our price range, too.

So the research started … All over the internet, looking for recurring problems.  In every way, this car seemed to be a good choice.  Then we realized that we KNOW the couple that traded this car in.  SO …  I called and asked a few questions.  I DID NOT AS ANYTHING ABOUT MONEY for a couple of reasons, the biggest being keeping this thing ethical.  I believe in doing honest business.  I found out everything about the history of the car, and quite frankly, was even MORE interested in it.  And then the bad news … it was overdue for a timing belt change.  That would HAVE to be part of the deal.

When we sat down with our salesman, I told him we don’t play games.  I told him everything I’d found that I wanted fixed.  Three of those were minor repairs, and then the timing belt (and water pump).  And the haggling began!  (WAIT, I THOUGHT WE DIDN’T PLAY GAMES!!)  Diana had researched the prices of this car from all over, both from multiple book values AND what is for sale right now on different lots and by different individuals.  After a long, painful negotiation, we bought the car and my mechanic will be doing the repairs.  Which, honestly, I KNOW he will not cut any corners.  I really thought they would’ve preferred to make the repairs, and we DID negotiate it both ways.  But either their used car manager LIED to me OR they have some serious internal issues at this particular dealership.  My guess is the first.

And I hate it when people lie to me.  Makes me wonder if I will ever go back to this dealership, one at which I’ve bought three of my last four cars.

Progress is slow

25 Apr

Between services here at EBC I called Mom.  Actually just a few minutes ago.  Yes, Dad came home Thursday.  Thankfully Elaine and Karl (my little sis and her hubby) are there helping both Mom and Dad adjust.  The learning curve is rapid and Dad seems to be making some progress.  But progress is slow.

They will return to Florida early this week and we will go up to move Krissy home.  So we will get to see it first hand.  I am trying not to be a pessimist, but I think there is neurological damage of which we are unaware.  And perhaps we will never know.  And maybe that doesn’t matter, because SLOW progress is much better than NO PROGRESS!!

The Domain Name

23 Apr

Choices … choices …

Why did I choose the domain name  Did you notice the R?  THAT will be the most common misspelling of this blog address!  But it is there out of necessity!

You see, I tried   TAKEN!  Apparently THAT David Wike is a photographer in the state of Washington.  His stuff looks good, but I bet the travel expenses would be MURDER, so I would use Bethany Robinson.  🙂

I also tried   TAKEN!  No one around here calls me Dave, but sometimes my sister and Diana’s sister does.  I could get used to it as a blog name.  BUT …. This site belongs to a very gifted guitarist, ironically, who now LIVES in Greenville, SC  (my hometown).  I met Dave’s dad once years ago when he sent an email to me intended for his son on AOL.  He was cool!  And Dave is now my Facebook friend!

So the R was inevitable … And, yes, isn’t it ironic that I have earned a doctor’s degree AND my initials are D.R. Wike, making me Dr. D.R. Wike.  drdrwike,com   Hmmm…. that has a ring …

Sleepless Nights

22 Apr

Last night’s Bible study was about worry.  Luke 12 shares those words from Jesus.  We are told not to worry about earthly things, even about our needs,but to focus on the kingdom of God and if we seek Him first, He will help us sort out all the rest.  And I must not be doing a good job of that!

For the third morning in a row, I’ve been wide awake WAYYY before my alarm went off.  Two mornings at 4:30, and I slept late yesterday (until 5:30).  And I don’t know why …

Actually, I can guess it has something to do with Dad coming home from rehab today and my belief that he is not quite ready.  I’ve asked Mom to come down here for a little while, but she will have none of that … And I guess I understand why.   But she can’t keep going like this …  And neither can we.  My car now knows the way to Easley so well all I have to do is crank it, tell it to go, and sleep for three hours:  It does the rest!!!  🙂

And I KNOW I need to stop worrying and trust all of this to God.  That is all that’s pulled us through so far!!

A Word to Churches …

21 Apr

No church is perfect.  No pastor loves their church more than I love Ebenezer, but even in that I know we are flawed.  And that starts with me.  I am not perfect, I make mistakes, sometimes I can’t see the forest because of all the trees ….

With all that said, I am a believer in evaluation.  And, believe this, there are MANY people at Ebenezer who evaluate my every move!!!  🙂  And my children … and my house … and my car … and my clothes … (Well, you get the picture)

And, churches, it is time we evaluate OURSELVES.  There are some frightening trends going on in many churches right now:

One trend is the “squeeze everything we can out of our employees mentality.”  Growing up in Greenville, SC, which was once known as the “Textile Center of the WORLD,” I am familiar with this management philosophy.  And I know where it ends:  Staff burnout.  And that is not only bad for your staff, it is bad for the church!

Another downward trend involves pastoral tenure.  The average tenures in all denominations are going down.  Why??  In some cases, ministers are too quick to jump ship.  When the honeymoon of a new ministry is over, some look for the next honeymoon or a bigger ship to jump onto.  In other cases, churches seem to be quick to jump the gun with calling minister, then in a few months deciding that minister needs to go.  And some churches do this YEARLY.  At some point, you need to wonder if it is all of these ministers, or the church??

What is the remedy for the pastoral tenure problem??  MINISTERS, if you are not in it for the long-haul, don’t get in it at all!!  CHURCHES … (insert previous sentence here)

ANOTHER frightening trend is complacency.  “I don’t know, and I don’t care.”  When we stop caring, we stop BEING the church God called us to be!!  Enough said!

Every church is different.  Each situation to which we are called is unique.  The best thing we can do to advance His kingdom is find what He wants us to do and do it!!  Maybe if I’d written that as the first sentence of this blog, you wouldn’t have had to read all of this!!!

The week as it shapes up

21 Apr

This week is shaping up to be a momentous week in Wike history … After SEVENTEEN weeks in the hospital and rehabilitation, Dad is COMING HOME.  Thursday at 3pm he is paroled from the Cottages at Brushy Creek and will re-enter the house he built with his bare hands over 35 years ago.

This IS an exciting thing.  Physically he is close to being ready.  Mentally, maybe not so much.  I believe there was more neurological damage than we realize (resulting from the subdurals).  But many people have said getting him home will help the mental side as well.  So I am hoping and praying …

On another positive note, next week I get to move KRISSY HOME!!  At least, for the summer!  She has worked hard this semester and so far is doing very well.  I am just praying for a strong finish!!