Showing posts from May, 2021

Tortoise Repatriation

  During the course of an average summer, I deal with an assortment of living things. Our yard becomes a sanctuary for squirrels, rabbits, chipmunks, and a variety of birds from the beloved Cardinals to the bullying Bluebirds. We also have to control some welcomed pollinators like honeybees and bumblebees, but we're on guard against too many pesky wasps and spiders! We have had geese and ducks from a nearby pond try to lay their eggs under our bushes and “start their families” on our premises as well. Several years back, our dog Freddie gingerly rolled one of those goose eggs out of his mouth and onto the ground right in front of me. His tail was wagging wildly and the expression in his eyes seemed to say, "See what I brought you today, master! Do you still like me?!"😕 However, in the nearly thirty years we've lived in this house, I don’t think I have ever had a sizable tortoise (or turtle) take up residence under our rose-lavender flowering rhododendron plant though

Belts and Suspenders Etiquette

This past weekend, I wore my mask into the church building even though the CDC and our denominational leadership agreed that those who have been fully vaccinated no longer need to wear a mask. This is something new for those of us you have only recently returned to in-person worship. I certainly welcome getting rid of my mask, but wanted to be considerate of others who may for one reason or another have yet to receive their shots. I’ve had a couple of portly pastor friends who would wear suspenders on occasions when they dressed up in a suit to preach their Sunday sermon. I’ve seen some who liked the idea of dramatically punctuating the points, especially their sermonic zingers, with a snap of the suspenders for emphasis!  I'm told that it's a fashion faux pas to wear both a belt and suspenders! It’s technically not necessary since they have the same purpose... securing trousers to avoid an unexpected wardrobe malfunction! Etiquette says it's one or the other! Yet in these

"I've Been Misunderstood!"

  Monique read me the riot act recently over another misunderstanding! She had to make a quick trip into the school to retrieve some papers for one of the grandsons. I told her that I would remain in the semi-circular driveway. However, when I saw some parents coming behind me to pick up their children. I decided to pull forward a little so they could easily get the children into their cars. When she came out the door, she didn’t see me in the growing line of cars. She assumed that I had moved to the adjacent parking area and walked to it.  Waiting and fuming with each passing minute, she finally called my cell. I held the phone away from my ear when her voice became louder, “Where are you? I have been waiting here and looking all over for you! You told me you'd be right outside the door!" I tried responding in a playful, but sensitive way, “I’m in the driveway just outside the door in front of the line. It’s the white Buick with our initials on the license plate!" "

The Blessing of Diversity

Rice University's Kinder Research Institute has reported that "Houston, Texas is the most ethnically diverse city in America." ( ) That's a pretty bold statement and I could expect that some residents of Los Angeles, Chicago and New York might take exception to this research conclusion. I do know that it was the most diverse city I have ever lived in! From 1984 to 1991, I pastored in southwest Houston and witnessed firsthand how Sharpstown was undergoing demographic and ethnic changes. At that time, the Houston I.S.D. was a reflection of this shift with 125 languages being spoken within its school population. Our children were in the minority attending their neighborhood schools that were approximately 40% Hispanics, 40% Asians and the other 20% divided among the Blacks and Whites. Linking Hands and Hearts! Image Credit: Our church was si