Saturday, June 25, 2011

A Few of Larry's Lessons for Our Sons

Just a few of my treasured memories about Larry when our boys were young …

*Larry leading night time family devotions and prayers

* Early each morning, before they were awake, Larry would kneel beside each boy’s bed and pray for them.  Many times, that was the first thing they saw when they woke up.

* Larry wrote a note, including a scripture, to put in the boys’ school lunches.  They were blessed, as well as the kids at their tables, since the note was passed around each day.

* He taught the boys to tie a tie and dress appropriately for the occasion.

* Going with the boys, when they first started mowing lawns for other people, to make sure they knew exactly what was expected to complete the job.  Of course, I loved the day that they all had been mowing our grass.  The weed eater started up again because, “Dad missed a spot.”

* Larry, to this day, still calls to let us know when he is on his way home and then asks if we need anything.  It was natural for the boys to do that when they started driving and going places.

* He taught the boys the importance of changing the oil in the car and keeping up with the maintenance so that the car would run well, last longer, and be safer to drive.

* Larry has shown us, by his example, the importance of having a passionate desire to know Jesus and humbly serve others.

* By his words and actions, Larry has modeled for our sons what it means to love your wife like Jesus loves the church.

Proverbs 22:6
Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.

Ephesians 6:4
Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.

3 John 4
 I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Lessons from Dad

* Always treat and speak to your mother with respect.

* Keep in touch and spend time with your family.

* He taught me how to make a list for things that needed to be accomplished.

* Always take a moment to smile before you answer the phone.

* In business, the person who answers the phone, is the voice of the company or organization

* In response to gossip toward you, live a life that makes everything they say about you a lie.

* I’ve never heard a bad sermon.  If I can walk away with one thing I can apply to my life, it was a good sermon.

* You will have your friends at school and your friends at church, but your friends at church will be your life-long friends.

* Kill them with kindness.

* Never burn your bridges behind you.

* Always dress appropriately for the occasion.

* Always do your best.

* Be grateful and express it.

* Education was a priority…it was never “if” you go to college, but “when” you go to college.

* School attendance was important.  If we were going to Lubbock for the weekend, 560 miles away, we did not leave until after school was out for the day.

* Church was very important to Dad.  He loved and supported his church.  You might stay up late on Saturday night, but you would go to Sunday School and church the next day.

Ephesians 6:2
“Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise—

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Like Father, Like Son

Chad is in a two week class at Truett Seminary, as he fulfills requirements toward the Doctor of Ministry degree.   In one of the class discussions, on family, he stated that he only had one memory of his PaPa, Larry’s dad.  He and Brad had just turned two the month before Mr. Bertrand died.  Chad shared that he remembered sitting on the floor in front of PaPa’s recliner while his grandfather watched him play.  At that point, the professor said, “Well, let me tell you about your PaPa.”  You see, Dr. Creech had been the Youth Minister at Larry’s home church and had known Larry’s parents.  He told Chad about looking forward to hearing Mr. Bertrand pray.  (He spoke with a thick French accent.  It took him a while because he prayed in French and then translated into English when he spoke the prayer.)  Dr. Creech remembered that during his prayers he would always pray, "Lord, bless our children wherever they may be."  He also said that Mr. Bertrand’s encouragement and support made it easy for a young minister to work in a church.

Although we have told the boys stories about Larry’s dad and shown them pictures through the years, what a priceless gift it was to have Dr. Creech share stories that made an impression on his life more than 30 years ago.  Even though Larry does not speak with a Cajun French accent when he prays, he is just like his dad when it comes to having a servant’s heart, integrity, a strong work ethic, and a love for the Lord, His people, and His Word.  In a way, Scott, Brad, and Chad do know PaPa because they know his son and the son is very much like his father.

In John 8 and 14, Jesus encourages his disciples, followers, and us when he says that when we know Him, we know His Father.

John 8:19
19 Then they asked him, “Where is your father?”
“You do not know me or my Father,” Jesus replied. “If you knew me, you would know my Father also.”

John 14:6-11
6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. 7 If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.”
8 Philip said, “Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.”
 9 Jesus answered: “Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? 10 Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you are not just my own. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work. 11 Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Ready or Not

A few weeks ago, Harold Camping caused more than a little stir when he announced that May 21, 2011, 6:00 p.m., was the date and time of Jesus’ return.  The closer it came to the time that he prophesied, the more the news media picked up the story with articles, questions, and interviews.  Some people were very serious about the approaching time and date, while others mocked fun at the announcement.  At the very least, the possibility had people talking and questioning what could happen.

That was a great time to read and believe scripture, share beliefs, and take inventory.  If Jesus did return on that day, I knew where I would be.  But it did make me stop and think about whether all the people I know and love had the same assurance of their salvation.  Had I shared with them and others the difference that following Jesus and having a relationship with Him has made and is making in my life?  Were my thoughts, words, actions, and reactions a testimony to that?  Did they know that the hope, peace, desires, joy, and contentment I have are because of God’s unconditional love for me?  Was I taking the opportunity to speak and live out Truth so others would know that God wants that for them, as well?

It’s almost like God used Harold Camping’s false prediction to give each of us a second chance to let others know about what we believe about who He is and what He has done and continues to do in our lives.  I need to be ready for Jesus’ return every day because ready or not…He’s coming!

And just for the record…I did leave two loads of clothes spread out to fold and hang up, until after a wedding we attended…just in case…

Matthew 24: 36; 42-44
36 “No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son,[f] but only the Father.
42 “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come. 43 But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have kept watch and would not have let his house be broken into. 44 So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.

I Timothy 2:1-6
1 I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone— 2 for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. 3 This is good, and pleases God our Savior, 4 who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 5 For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave himself as a ransom for all men—the testimony given in its proper time.