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Author Topic: Rocking Chair Reflections
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ubject: A glass of water

A lecturer, when explaining stress management to an audience, raised a glass of water and asked, "How heavy is this glass of water?"

Answers called out ranged from 20g to 500g.

The lecturer replied, "The absolute weight doesn't matter. It depends on how long you try to hold it."

"If I hold it for a minute, that's not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I'll have an ache in my right arm. If I hold it for a day, you'll have to call an ambulance. In each case, it's the same weight, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes."

He continued, "And that's the way it is with stress management. If we carry our burdens all the time, sooner or later, as the burden becomes increasingly heavy, we won't be able to carry on. As with the glass of water, you have to put it down for a while and rest before holding it again. When we're refreshed, we can carry on with the burden. So, before you return home tonight, put the burden of work down. Don't carry it home. You can pick it up tomorrow. Whatever burdens you're carrying now, let them down for a moment if you can. Relax; pick them up later after you've rested.
Life is short. Enjoy it!"

And then he shared some ways of dealing with the burdens of life:

* Accept that some days you're the pigeon, and some days you're the statue.

* Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat them.

* Drive carefully. It's not only cars that can be recalled by their maker.

* If you can't be kind, at least have the decency to be vague.

* If you lend someone $20 and never see them again, it was probably worth it.

* It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others.

* Never buy a car you can't push.

* Never put both feet in your mouth at the same time, because then you won't have a leg to stand on.

* Nobody cares if you can't dance well. Just get up and dance.

* Since it's the early worm that gets eaten by the bird, sleep late.

* The second mouse gets the cheese.

* When everything's coming your way, you're in the wrong lane.

* Birthdays are good for you. The more you have, the longer you live.

* You may be only one person in the world, but you may also be the world to one person.

* Some mistakes are too much fun to only make once .

* We could learn a lot from crayons. Some are sharp, some are pretty and some are dull . Some have weird names, and all are different colors, but they all have to live in the same box .

A truly happy person is one who can enjoy the scenery on a detour.

Have an awesome day and know that someone has thought about you today. . . . . .... I did.

A Servant of Christ,

1 Tim. 3:
16: And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh..

Posts: 3978 | From: Council Grove, KS USA | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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God bless you;

I was reminded of days gone by, when they had the funeral for Puncher Cooper, from down Saffordville way:
He was a 70 year-old farmer who lost a wrestling match with one of the big hay bales, and it crushed him. The bales are shoulder high on a 6'er and weigh-in at 1/2 ton. He had it up on his tractor forks and went up too high. It rolled down the forks and on top of him.

He and Jeanine were good friends of my Mom and Dad's, and Jeanine would call up and ask about the crappie fishing. They were lifetime residents of Saffordville, and Jeanine was always one of the ladies helping with all of the church functions. It is a tragic loss, but I think that most of us would rather go with our boots on.

Puncher had a couple of older brothers, who were grown-up and gone by the time he and his younger brother were born. In reflecting I am reminded of Joe Cooper who my Mom and Dad rode with on the ranches, and who could have ridden right off the pages of a Zane Grey novel.

Joe was not a big man, just a bit under 6', and was built like iron and old leather harness. Burnt brown by the sun, with an eternal squint from searching for strays in the summer's sun, Joe sat the saddle like he and the horse were one dusty critter.

Most of us raised on the farm/ranch were a-sittin' on horseback from the time we first learned to walk, and at the age of four we could saddle-up and herd cows. Joe had been cowboying from the early 1930's, and by the time Mom and Dad got married in 1950, and were riding the ranches together, Joe was a fixture, and course Dad knew him for over 20 years. Course Mom went to school with Puncher and Jeanine down in Saffordville in the 40's.

There were quite a few old time cowboys around in those days. The railroad was an intrinsic part of ranching at that time, and the Texas cows would come into the Flinthills in the spring, to be worked and and turned-out on pasture. In the mid summer the cattle would be gathered, and the feeders to be shipped to the feedlots, such as the Anderson Cattle company in Emporia, to be finished for the Chicago meat packers.

Joe was a solitary breed and the consummate individualist. He would winter on a ranch down in New Mexico. When the snow had started to recede he would make the trek Northeast into the Flinthills of Kansas, where he would work cattle for the summer, and after the last of the roundups, he would pack-up for New Mexico. Course all Joe had was his horses and gear.

After roundup Joe would collect his wages, saddle up his horse, set a couple pack saddles on his other two, and turn into the setting sun and ride for New Mexico. He had his fencing pliers, and a pouch of staples. As he would ride across the big pastures he might come to a section gate to go through, if not he would let down the fence, cross over and then staple her back. Eventually he would be back on the ranch in New Mexico. He did this for alot of years.

Back in the late 60's-early 70's Mom heard that they had found Joe in a shallow grave down in New Mexico, and there might have been something to do with a certain Mexican lady and her family did not approve.

It sure caused me to reflect on how we all worry about road maps, airline connections, the price of gas. I cannot imagine saddling-up and outfitting a couple of pack horses, and pointing my horse's nose cross-country for 700 miles. Not too many of the old timers around any more, and not too many who remember those who never made the history books, but rode where the tall grass blows in the summer sun and you can drop down and get a drink of cold clear spring water from a rock-bottom creek, just make sure you are upstream from the cows.

Old Joe always liked his horses to be a bit on the onery/cantakerous side, so that no one else would want to ride them. Kind of like their owner individual and cantakerous.


This picture epitamizes so many of the men who I grew up around and who I serve with on our local fire department:


The photo reminds me of so many men that one sees at farm sales, church socials, etc. If you notice the forehead is pale and the hair squished down. He always wears his hat and so above the eyes never gets any sun. Only for Momma and the kids would he sit for this photo foolishness, for he would sure be more comfortable out in the barn with those new calves.

Those big hands with decades of toil imbedded in the seams/cracks/crevices, with nails that can never be cleaned. Hands that can grab the reins and control the frisky team on a cold winter's morn, yet so gentle that they can nurture the most feeble-wobbly calf back to Momma Cow's nourishment.

A face of stoicism, that with dogged determination meets life head-on. A face that though grim breaks into a sardonic smile when the twister takes out his barn.

The neighbor says,"So sorry to hear about your barn Jeb, quite a blow last night."

The Old Farmer nods his head, and then grins, and says, "Yup, but the cows and my team made it through, and Momma and the youngins made it through in the celler okay. The house and the shed are okay."

Within a couple of weeks men just like him, and their women folks and youngins will get together and rebuild his barn, and have a big dinner. Time will forever be divided between the "Before Jeb's barn went down', and "after Jeb's barn went down". Men endowed with stoicism in the face of adversity, and a deep faith and eternal optimism. Tomorrow's a new day, the next crop's going to come in, that nagging pain in my neck and shoulder's just a bit of arthritis.

Heroic hearts, stoic determination, deep and abiding faith, old before their time, as much at one with the land as that big old Oak Tree down by the creek that the youngins have the rope swing tied to.

Happy trails to you and yourn.

A Servant of Christ,

1 Tim. 3:
16: And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh..

Posts: 3978 | From: Council Grove, KS USA | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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Originally posted by Caretaker:
God bless you;

An Old Farmer's Advice:

* The biggest troublemaker you'll probably ever have to deal with, watches you from the mirror every mornin'.

Too true, too true.

Thanks for those posts.



Posts: 290 | From: UK | Registered: Jun 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Eduardo Grequi
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God bless you dear Brother, God bless! WOW what a witness.WHAT a tear-jerker!
Life's Railway to heaven! I remember singing that old song.

Posts: 771 | From: Belvidere, IL | Registered: Oct 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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God bless you;

My Grandpa once told me that life was just putting one foot in front of the other, and eventually one looks around and discovers that you've covered quite a distance.

When one is walking with the Master, when His Holy Spirt indwells the heart then one can savor the walk itself and not have to worry about the ultimate destination.

The greatest blessing that this old feller has ever experienced besides the love and peace of Christ, is to gaze into the face of my precious one, and to look upon the faces of my children and grandbabies and to tell them how much I cherish them. The privalege of laying a hand on their shoulder, or giving them a big ol bear-hug, and praying over them is an honor that causes the tears to well up, for to think that my Father has endowed this old sinner saved by grace, with the love and care of such precious souls is so overwhelming.

Every precious soul has a sunrise to experience, a day to be savored, and a dusk to reflect upon. May we take the time to allow our hearts to savor a moment for it is unique in all the earth, is fleeting at best, and the pathway goes on and it is left behind.

Memory is the treasurehouse of the soul, wherein are stored the sights, sounds, feelings, perceptions of life. The painful are stored with the joyous. The sands of time wear down the sharp edges of pain, and though a sadness remains, through experience we are able to understand the Words of God when He declares, "and this too shall pass". The sands of time polish the gems of joy into shining jewels, which can be taken out, held, and savored again with a smile, and the joy once felt resurrected.

When one shares the attribute of love, with others, the legacy which is passed-on is rich and everlasting in the hearts of those we touch. May the pathway we walk enable us to bestow a bountiful harvest of spiritual fruit in the hearts and lives of those around.

Happy trails to you and yourn.

A Servant of Christ,

1 Tim. 3:
16: And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh..

Posts: 3978 | From: Council Grove, KS USA | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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Member # 36

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God bless you;

An Old Farmer's Advice:

* Your fences need to be horse-high, pig-tight and bull-strong.

* Keep skunks and bankers and lawyers at a distance.

* Life is simpler when you plow around the stump.

* A bumble bee is considerably faster than a John Deere tractor.

* Words that soak into your ears are whispered...not yelled.

* Meanness don't jes' happen overnight.

* Forgive your enemies. It messes up their heads.

* Do not corner something that you know is meaner than you.

* It don't take a very big person to carry a grudge.

* You cannot unsay a cruel word.

* Every path has a few puddles.

* When you wallow with pigs, expect to get dirty.

* The best sermons are lived, not preached.

* Most of the stuff people worry about ain't never gonna happen anyway.

* Don't judge folks by their relatives.

* Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.

* Live a good, honorable life. Then when you get older and think back, you'll enjoy it a second time.

* Don't interfere with somethin' that ain't botherin' you none.

* Timing has a lot to do with the outcome of a rain dance.

* If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop diggin'.

* Sometimes you get, and sometimes you get got.

* The biggest troublemaker you'll probably ever have to deal with, watches you from the mirror every mornin'.

* Always drink upstream from the herd.

* Good judgment comes from experience, and a lotta that comes from bad judgment.

* Lettin' the cat outta the bag is a whole lot easier than puttin' it back in.

* If you get to thinkin' you're a person of some influence, try orderin' somebody else's dog around.

* Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly. Leave the rest to God.

Happy trials to you and yourn'.

A Servant of Christ,

1 Tim. 3:
16: And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh..

Posts: 3978 | From: Council Grove, KS USA | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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God bless you;

When I was first born, we lived with my Grandma and Grandpa out on the farm. We did not yet have rural electricity out our way, and the light came from kerosene lanterns. I was fussy from the croop, and many a night my big Grandpa would sit and rock me in his old family rocking chair. Growing-up I remember him sitting in it next to the kitchen table. Today that chair sits in my dining room next to the stove, and many a night I will sit and rock and reflect on bygone days.

Lets take it out on the front porch, with a tall glass of lemonade and rock and reflect a bit.

It was the winter of 1891 and the influenza epidemic was raging in the homes in Emporia, KS. Young Ina was just 3 years old, but for many nights she sat dilligently by her mothers bedside, mopping a fevered brow, fetching a drink of water. Alas it was not to be, and they buried her mother in Maplewood cemetary.

My Grandmother Ina was a small woman barely 5' and my Grandpa was 6'4", but my Grandmother was steadfast a pillar of strength and faith. Too many of her family would succomb to the ravages of diseases which are today treated by antibiotics, and penicillian,(which was discovered in 1928, more than thirty years after my great-grandmother's passing from influenza), and it was Ina who sat so many of the bedside vigils. Her grandfather was one of the first Methodist ministers in the area, and it was to Jessie Head's household that Ina would live with her Brothers and Sisters while her father Nemuel taught school out of town.

I was just reflecting on a wee-little three-year-old lass who had to shoulder such a burden. I had this story in my notes and thought I might share:

Does This Railroad Lead To Heaven?
As told by
Pastor F. M. Dosh

This is a true story taken from the 1894 edition of "Touching Incidents And Remarkable Answers To Prayer." As you'll see, this wonderful story seems to speak to adults as well as to children. It's easy to see why Jesus urged the disciples to "Permit the little children to come to Me, for to such as these belongs the kingdom of heaven." (Luke 18:16)

In traveling we often meet with people of different nationalities and languages. We also come across various incidents, some sorrowful, and others joyful. I recently witnessed one of the most joyful incidents while traveling on the railroad.

The train was going west, and it was evening. At a station a little girl about eight years old came aboard, carrying a little purse under her arm. She came into my car and quickly took a seat. She then began to study each face, but all were strange to her. She appeared weary, and using her purse for a pillow, she laid down on the seat to try to get a little sleep.

Soon the conductor came along collecting tickets and fare. Observing him, she asked him if she could lie there. The gentlemanly conductor replied that she could, and then kindly asked for her ticket. She informed him that she didn't have one, and then I overheard the following conversation. Said the conductor:

"Where are you going?"

"I'm going to heaven," she answered.

"Who's paying your fare?" he asked.

She said, "Mister, does this railroad lead to heaven, and does Jesus travel on it?"

"I don't think so," he answered. "Why did you think that?"

"Why, sir, before my mommy died she used to sing to me about a heavenly railroad, and you looked so nice and kind that I thought this was that railroad. My mommy used to sing about Jesus on the heavenly railroad, and that He paid the fare for everybody, and that the train stopped at every station to take people on board. My mom don't sing to me anymore. Nobody sings to me now, and I thought I'd take the train and go see my mommy. Mister, do you sing to your little girl about the railroad that goes to heaven? You have a little girl, don't you?"

With tears in his eyes, he replied, "No, my little dear, I have no little girl now. I had one once, but she died some time ago and went to heaven."

"Did she go over this railroad, and are you going to see her now?" she asked.

By this time every person in the coach was upon their feet, and most of them were weeping. An attempt to describe what I witnessed is almost impossible. Some said, "God bless this little girl." Overhearing someone say that she was an angel, the little girl earnestly replied, "Yes, my mommy used to say that I would be an angel some day."

Addressing herself once more to the conductor, she asked him, "Do you love Jesus? I do, and if you love Him, He will let you ride to heaven on His railroad. I'm going there, and I wish you would go with me. I know Jesus will let me into heaven when I get there, and He will let you in too and everybody that will ride on His railroad - yes, all these people. Wouldn't you like to see heaven, and Jesus, and your little girl?"

These words, so pathetically and innocently uttered, brought a great gush of tears from all eyes, but most profusely from those of the conductor. Some who were already traveling on the heavenly railroad shouted aloud for joy.

She now asked the conductor, "Mister, may I lie here until we get to heaven?"

"Yes, dear, yes," he answered.

"Will you wake me up when we get there so that I can see my mommy, and your little girl, and Jesus?" she asked. "I so much want to see them all."

His answer came in broken phrases, but in words very tenderly spoken, "Yes, dear angel, yes. God bless you." "Amen!" was sobbed by more than a score of voices.

Turning her eyes once more upon the conductor, she questioned him again, "What should I tell your little girl when I see her? Should I tell her that I saw her daddy on Jesus' railroad? Should I?"

This brought a fresh flood of tears from all present, and the conductor knelt by her side and, embracing her, wept the reply he could not utter. At this point the brakeman called out the name of another station.

The conductor got up and asked the brakeman to take care of his duty for him at that station, for he was busy. That was a precious place. I Thank God that I was a witness to this scene, and I was sorry that at that point I was obliged to leave the train.

The Sequel

A letter from the conductor to Pastor Dosh

Dear Pastor Dosh,

I wish to unburden my heart by writing to you and saying that that angel visit on the train was a blessing to me, although I didn't realize it in its fullness until some hours later. But blessed be the Redeemer, I know now that I am His and He is mine. I no longer wonder why Christians are happy. Oh, my joy, my joy!

The instrument of my salvation has gone to be with God. I wanted to adopt her in the place of my little daughter, who is now in heaven, and with this intention I took her back to her hometown, where she left the train.

When I talked with my wife about adopting her, she replied, "Yes, certainly, and immediately too, for there is a Divine providence in this. Oh," she said, "I could never refuse to take under my charge the instrument of my husband's salvation."

When I returned to the town where I had left the little girl, I asked about her and learned that in just three days after her return she died suddenly, without any apparent disease, and her happy soul had gone to dwell with her mother, my little girl, and the angels in heaven.

I was sorry to hear of her death, but my sorrow is turned to joy when I think that my daughter in heaven received word from earth concerning her daddy, and that he is on the heavenly railway. Oh! sir, I think I see my little girl near the Redeemer. I think I hear her sing, "I'm safe at home, and daddy and mommy are coming." I find myself sending back the reply, "Yes, my darling, we are coming and will soon be there." Oh, my dear sir, I am so glad that I know you! May the blessing of the great God rest upon you. Please write to me, and be assured I would be most happy to meet you again.

We learn many things from this incident. From the mouths of infants and nursing babes Thou hast established strength? (Psalm 8:2) Not only should we never be afraid to speak out for Jesus, no matter where we are, but we should never give UP praying for the salvation of those we love. The conductor's wife was obviously a godly woman who must have been praying for her husband's salvation. It looks like God honored her prayers with a visit from this "little angel" who came in love, boldness, and with a word from the Lord about the conductor's daughter. The right word at the right time is a mighty tool in the hand of God.

Author Unknown


Life's Railway To Heaven

Life is like a mountain railroad, with an engineer that’s brave;
We must make the run successful, from the cradle to the grave;
Watch the curves, the fills, the tunnels; never falter, never quail;
Keep your hand upon the throttle, and your eye upon the rail.


Blessèd Savior, Thou wilt guide us,
Till we reach that blissful shore;
Where the angels wait to join us
In Thy praise forevermore.

You will roll up grades of trial; you will cross the bridge of strife;
See that Christ is your Conductor on this lightning train of life;
Always mindful of obstruction, do your duty, never fail;
Keep your hand upon the throttle, and your eye upon the rail.


You will often find obstructions; look for storms of wind and rain;
On a fill, or curve, or trestle, they will almost ditch your train;
Put your trust alone in Jesus; never falter, never fail;
Keep your hand upon the throttle, and your eye upon the rail.


As you roll across the trestle, spanning Jordan’s swelling tide,
You behold the Union Depot into which your train will glide;
There you’ll meet the Superintendent, God the Father, God the Son,
With the hearty, joyous, plaudit, “Weary pilgrim, welcome home!”


Happy trails to you and yourn until we meet again.

A Servant of Christ,

1 Tim. 3:
16: And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh..

Posts: 3978 | From: Council Grove, KS USA | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator

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