Friday, September 23, 2011

Goodby Summer 2011

Summer is over. Wow! Where did it go so quickly?

I seem to have spent the season immersed in all the usual activities, as well as some new ones. Linda and I built a small deck at the house. Weeks of work went into finishing off the remodeling project on the house on the corner as Benji, his father in law, several other kind volunteers, and I got the place ready for Ben's family to move into just before the arrival of the new bambino. It's been a very nice thing to have some of our grandsons living next door. But even though we see the boys more often, Linda and I were talking last night about the fact that we really haven't had as much quality time with the boys since they moved in next door as we had when they use to come over and spend Friday nights with us! We'll look into correcting that situation.

I have also spent an unusual number of hours mowing grass. Did your grass grow faster this summer that in years past? Mine certainly did!

Linda and I observed our 40th Wedding Anniversary in June, and celebrated it with a Caribbean Cruise on the week of Labor Day. I still marvel that I managed to grab her so many years ago, and that she has had the grace to stay with me all these years. Must be love!

I had opportunity to spend some time (not nearly enough) with the Louisiana grandkids for a few days in June and September, and cherish that time together. They are growing so big and handsome and our hearts yearn to be with them more, yet we are appreciatave of those fleeting opportunities when we can.

There was no Little League baseball for us this Summer, but there was Soccer in the Spring, and Football kicked off before the end of Summer.

No trip to Cincinnati this Summer to watch my beloved Redlegs, but Jay and I had opportunity to take in a Diamondback/Giant game in Phoenix together this Summer, after the close of the Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting.

Lots of ministry activity this Summer, with sermon prep, counseling sessions, radio program productions, meetings, Seminary and local Baptist Association business, four funerals, and numerous hospital, nursing home, and other visits. And, as always for the past 7 years, regular monthly visits to the Ashland Bellefonte Cancer Center as well as the other required specialists for podiatry and endocrinology! I thank God daily for each additional day He has chosen to allow me to be here.

An entire Spring and Summer have passed, and I have not set foot on a golf course. I miss that, and must make some time next year (if there is a next year).

Biggest joy of the Summer? There were many blessings, but I suppose the highlight was the birth of our fifth little grandson, Nathaniel Ray Adkins.

Greatest disappointment? The sad treatment of several dear brothers in the ministry, who had their positions defunded in an arbitrary, "top - down" action by an agency of the SBC. These missionaries and their families had faithfully served the Lord and their convention for years as local association missionaries, campus ministers, and in resort missions. My heart breaks for these brothers and sisters and their children, but the good news is that they serve a God who is greater than any agency or administrator or council. Although many of us were shocked and disappointed by the way this all came down so quickly - none of this came as a surprise to Him.

Brothers, remember the promise of God in Isaiah 41:10 "Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.'"

Some of you might also take comfort in those next three verses as well. Just sayin'...

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