Posts

"I Got It! I Got It!"

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It’s baseball season for our three Hartman grandsons! We moved beyond practices this week to actual games. It has been fun for Mimi and Poppi to throw the lawn chairs into the car and head out to the ballparks in Athens and Williamsville to watch them. Danny, our fifth grader, has been playing for three years now and is the most experienced. He made us proud during his game by making two great catches defensively and laying down a ground ball on the third-base line for a single and an RBI. Charlie, third grade, has only played one official game and that was last season just before his family went to New Mexico for vacation. He is showing great promise during practices this season and is very eager to build upon last summer’s brief experience. He did a nice job of hitting a strong single during the game this week that resulted in a much-needed RBI for his team. "Awww! I don't got it!!" The youngest brother in the trio is Dawson Michael who is just wrapping up his kinderg

Dr. KG: Spirit-Animated!

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  Dr. Kevin B. Gibson March 20, 1965 to April 25, 2022   I am mourning the loss of my close friend, Kevin Gibson, who passed away suddenly while recovering from a recent heart procedure. I was privileged to be his pastor more than thirty years ago as we served the same church together. We became instant friends. Kevin was a valued colleague. While shocked and dealing with my own grief, I was humbled to be asked by Christy, his beloved wife, to share the message at his funeral on April 30. I had been the officiant at their wedding nearly twenty-eight years ago. I wrote these next few paragraphs of remembrance for the service and excerpt them so that you can feel a little of the grief and loss we all feel at Kevin's untimely passing...   "Kevin Brent Gibson grew up in a pastor’s home. Ed and Ida likely introduced him to the faith early on and it stuck! He answered the call to ministry and prepared well. Kevin and Christy met in January 1992. I wrote these reflections into thei

A Heart for God!

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In the days of Lent leading up to Easter, many of us may have made some renewed promises related to our spiritual growth. Now, I wonder how we are doing in keeping those promises. It is not easy to follow through when there are so many distractions. Clear, sunny days with warmer temperatures call us to get outdoors where sporting activities, family gatherings, and home projects get in the way of following through. Our progress report card may have various boxes to be checked: weekly church attendance. small group participation, and service in the community. Are we keeping current with daily Bible readings, making time for prayerful reflections, and for those who like to write, journaling our insights? I like to follow the advice of one of my seminary professors years ago who declared, “You haven’t really thought about something until you have written it down.” This adage has kept me thinking and writing! 😉 A Heart for God! Image credit: seekPNG.com This Easter season, our church pas

Make Space for Others!

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We like to stream medical-themed shows these days. They are rotated into our viewing queue of intense crime dramas, laugh-out-loud comedies and “who-done-it?” mystery-filled television series. The setting of our favorite “med shows” is usually the hospital emergency room. This is where the critically injured or ill patients are transported for triage. Some of these individuals are brought in for treatment without family or friends to accompany them. My Friend, Joel Newton! 20th Anniversary, Woodland, Peoria! “Is there anyone we can call for you to let them know you are here?” is a common question asked by hospital personnel. The other night, we were watching as doctors tried to treat a middle-aged professional who had a critical, life-threatening heart condition. He was demanding and impatient thinking he would be quickly diagnosed, treated, and released. You could expect this guy to describe himself as a “compulsive workaholic” and proud of it! A turning point in this episode came a

"Learning Anytime!"

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Our daughter, Michelle, made a post recently on social media. She does this a lot as she encouragers so many of her friends and contacts. She is a homeschool mother of four these days after spending fourteen years in the public schools teaching math. She has a small business on the side that promotes a healthy lifestyle. She serves as a part time administrative assistant for her church and serves another not-for-profit business as well. She is busy and productive! I’m proud of her! Dawson Michael In the "Lap of Learning!" She wrote this “on the fly” a few days ago, “Today, we untraditionally learned! We took our school supplies in the car and did our work while we waited for the boys’ haircuts to be finished! This is what I want – learning whenever and however! Learning anytime and every time!” I love how she “practices what she teaches!” The other night or shall I say, early morning, I was awakened with some mild discomfort from my osteoarthritis. I decided to spend the ti

Parables...Poems...Prayers!

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One of the things I have always enjoyed as a pastor is the variety of things that I am often asked to do. In a very real sense, the calling to pastor is the work of a generalist. The pastor is a care giver, a leader-administrator, and a proclaimer of the gospel. Of course, we are also friends, family members and citizens in our communities. Each of the roles we play are opportunities to serve. The Good Shepherd Image credit: freebibleimages.org Recently, I was asked to preach the traditional service in my home church - Springfield First UMC. One of our pastors took some much-needed time off and I had the privilege of substituting for him. Since the pastors were in a pre-Easter series on the Parables, I was assigned the one on the Talents from Matthew 25. Here is an excerpt from that message… ”This story today in verses 14-30 of the Talents , shows us the necessity of using well what God has entrusted to us. The point of this parable is not how much God has entrusted, but rather how

A Distracting Eye Issue!

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Recently, I had an experience that previously I had only heard about. One morning, I awoke with a “fly-like something” in my right eye! To make it even more fascinating and annoying, it also had a tail stringing from its center. It comes and goes from my field of vision. If I concentrate on it, it can be pretty distracting! Eye Floaters! Image credit: imgbin.com I have consulted an in-house expert regarding the matter. Monique recommends that I get an appointment with the eye specialist soon, but her diagnosis is that I have a “floater” in that eye. She has been dealing with such visual issues in both of her eyes for around ten years now! I guess I should be thankful that I haven’t had any such surprises until this time. I am creeping closer to my one-year anniversary of the “three-score and ten!” Isn’t it curious that they call these things, “floaters?” I have spent lazy hot Texas summers floating and tubing in the cool back waters of the Comal River in New Braunfels. That is an ent