Archive | June, 2010


28 Jun

So, how was YOUR weekend?  Do anything interesting?  I DID!!

On Saturday, I participated in TWO weddings.  Within two and a half hours of each other.  One at First Presbyterian and one at Ebenezer.  Dustin and Ellen Fails were wed at First Presbyterian.  I’ve known Dustin for the entire 15 years I’ve been at Ebenezer.  It was quite a privilege to be part of that one.  Billy and Margaret Early were wed at EBC, to a standing-room-only house.  Margaret was at Clemson when we got to EBC, but she and her family have been great friends to us, so it was equally an honor.

I call this the double-header … I’ve never had to do two weddings in one day.  Now, there was another minister in each wedding, so I didn’t have to do two complete weddings.  But it was interesting just the same.

After the second wedding I came home, cooked out for the family, and watched the Tigers not hit the ball and lose to USC in the CWS.  And, regardless of some of my Gamecock friends that have told me I am not allowed to do this, I have EVERY INTENTION of cheering for USC as they try to beat UCLA tonight.

And the cherry on top of all this:  A BEAR WAS CAPTURED IN FLORENCE THIS WEEKEND!!!  A BEAR!  IN FLORENCE!!  They apparently caught him at All-Star Lanes.  And the sad thing was he was on track to bowl around 250 until they cuffed him and stuffed him!  (They really DID catch him near the bowling alley.)

Hope your weekend was a good one!

The Latest on Dad

23 Jun

Dad is still in the Cottages at Brushy Creek rehab.  He will be there for another week, and will then run out of rehab days according to Medicare.  He IS getting somewhat stronger, but is still struggling with the intellectual side of it all.  It is so clear now that there is additional neurological damage and Dad is now dealing with the “swiss-cheese” effects of it all.

Mom is doing better with things.  She wants to purchase a wheelchair accessible van, which Elaine and I are searching for now.  One of the next big personal goals is my nephew’s graduation from Air Force OCS  in July down in Montgomery.  I sure hope Dad can make that trip.

Today’s Funny from Mikey

22 Jun

Our teacher asked us what our favorite animal was and I said, “Fried chicken.” She said I wasn’t funny. But she couldn’t have been right – everyone else in the class laughed.

My parents told me to always be truthful and honest, and I am. Fried chicken is my favorite animal. I told my dad what happened and he said my teacher was probably a member of PETA. He said they love animals very much. I do, too. Especially chicken – pork and beef and fish too.

Anyway, my teacher sent me to the principal’s office. I told him what happened, and he laughed too. Then he told me not to do it again.

The next day in class my teacher asked me what my favorite live animal was. I told her it was chicken. She asked me why, just like she’d asked the other children. So I told her it was because you could make them into fried chicken. She sent me back to the principal’s office again. He laughed, and told me not to do it again.

I don’t understand. My parents taught me to be honest, but my teacher doesn’t like it when I am. Today, my teacher asked us to tell her what famous person we admire most.

I told her, “Colonel Sanders.”

Guess where I am now…

[forwarded by Gordon Moore]

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Father’s Day 2010

20 Jun

Father’s Day.  2010.  Wow.

We’ve got some great dads here at Ebenezer.  Giants of faith and leaders of families who live it just the way God wants them to.  Who make no bones about the fact they are ready to lay down their lives, if need be, for their families.

I guess we might catch grief over this, but we did not ask the dads to stand up during the worship service.  We always do that for the moms, but seldom ever do that for the dads.  And I am SURE someone will fuss.  But I have never been one to make worship about US and about OUR RECOGNITION.  Isn’t it supposed to be all about JESUS??

Anyway, Happy Father’s Dad to all dads out there!!  I’ve already called my Dad.  He is still in the Cottages Rehab in Greer and making progress.  Hopefully he will be home in a week or so.  Hope all of you and your families have a great day!!!

VBS Finale

17 Jun

Yes, tonight is the last night of VBS at Ebenezer.  I don’t know the numbers from every night, but they were all in the mid-400s.  And that’s not REALLY the important thing at all …

This week, we’ve had the opportunity to share Christ with HUNDREDS of children and adults.  We’ve had rough spots and rocky roads.  We’ve seen storms and endured heat.  Our walk-in freezer decided to resign this week, probably carry-over from the lightning strike.  We’ve dealt with death, sickness, and probably pestilence.

And we are still standing!!  TO GOD BE THE GLORY!  And our prayer is that somehow, some way, somebody has received a seed of the Gospel that will flourish in their life.  And they will continue building the kingdom.

And if that only happens to ONE person this week, it is all worth it!!!!  And I mean that from the bottom of my heart!


16 Jun

I started to subtitle this post “ACS is the devil!”  Yeah, I don’t believe that for a SECOND!!!  ACS is AWESOME!!

Several years ago we started talking about using the ACS CheckPoint system, in which people check their children in to activities and events at our church.  The software logs their attendance and prints a badge for each child and a parents badge with a transaction number that matches each kid.  This number can be used to verify the identity of the parent when the child is picked up.  In a VBS that is running about 450 children and adults, and many of the kids are from the community and NOT regular EBC attenders, this is the SAFEST WAY I know of to protect children.  Having NO security makes NO SENSE WHATSOEVER in this day and age.

I never thought anyone would ever complain or criticize the fact that we were taking measures for safety.  And last night I was proved wrong.  I won’t go into details, but let me just say that I do NOT believe Ebenezer is enabling the Mark of the Beast by using this system.  The numbers are randomly generated and we neither keep them nor upload them to any type of national database.  We are NOT taking the easy way out in this.  The system works when we do it right, and it makes me feel safer as a pastor that we do it.  Kudos to ACS for this system!!

And I will NOT apologize for taking steps to ensure the safety of children at Ebenezer.

Latest on Dad and VBS2010

15 Jun


Dad was moved back to the Cottages at Brushy Creek today in Greer.  Hopefully for a limited stay.  More details to come on that as they develop, but at least he’s out of the hospital!!!


AWESOME!!  This is hump day for VBS.  It ends on Thursday.  Tons of kids, adults, youth (or as My Cousin Vinny said, “Youts”) on the campus tonight.  We are hoping for a good night with NO STORMS!

God is at work in this place and for that we are grateful!!!

An Incredible Feat

14 Jun

VBS 2010 is in FULL SWING!  And I just have to write this:  Watching such a volunteer machine work, and work WELL, is just unreal!  Yes, the EBC staff is there in supportive roles, but the heart of this VBS is found in THE WORKERS!!

This is truly the Church doing what the Church is called to do.  And it makes me glad to be the pastor of EBC!!!

13 Jun

Yes, you read it here first:  I love it!!  There are very few things I cannot do with it.  Most of all, I’ve been PREACHING FROM IT FOR SEVERAL WEEKS and very few people have NOTICED!!  And, I LOVE not having to shuffle papers while in the pulpit!

I know somewhere someone will hear about this and accuse me of trying to be state-of-the-art or “cool” or trying to hard to be modern, but they can just say and think whatever they wish:  It really does help me do a better job at what I do.

Another night at GMS

11 Jun

This week has been one of the toughest weeks at Ebenezer on many different levels.  For those who’ve been there for more than 12 years, you might really understand the depth of that previous sentence.  I never should’ve mentioned that anniversary thing … Jinxed myself and the EBC staff!!!  😉

And here I am, after another semi-sleepless night in Greenville Memorial Hospital.  Dad slept.  I didn’t.  He has a bed.  I have a medieval rack of torture, and for some reason this room does not have a recliner I could jump into.  Just the rack.

Dad says things that are way out of left field.  It’s hard to know if this is still the UTI talking, or if this is where he is.  Today we will talk with the social worker and make a decision about which facility to move Dad to.  They say it’s only for a couple of weeks, but we’ve been down this road before.  I see quicksand on the trail.

Yesterday was a unique day.  Drew rode with me to Kershaw.  There we did Archie Catoe’s funeral.  It was very well attended for a graveside.  And it was HOTTTT!

Then Drew and I embarked on a journey from Kershaw to Greenville.  You CANNOT get here from there.  We drove to Lancaster and picked up SC 9.  SC 9 took us all the way into Spartanburg, where we hit I-85 South into Greenville.  I guess it took us about two and a half hours.

So now I sit here.  Man, I could use some sleep.