Category: Tributes

I flew the small way this week — 8 seater. Not bad, a beautiful day, winds were at a minimum. Three seats actually carried travelers — two others and me. A pilot and co-pilot manned the front seats. We flew not by the “seat of our pants,” but for me it was an adventure. The term (flying by the seat…) emerged in the 1930s and was first widely used in reports of Douglas Corrigan’s flight from the USA to Ireland in 1938. “Douglas Corrigan was described as an aviator ‘who flies by the seat of his pants.”  “The old flying expression of ‘flies by the seat of his trousers’ was explained by Larry Conner — means going aloft without instruments, radio or other such luxuries.”  phrases.org. The phrase conjures up a ton of metaphorical pictures for believers. We believers must go many times without connective guides — gauges for equilibrium, location…

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The great significance of the Gettysburg Address, then, “is that it restates and reaffirms another great expression of the American mind, the Declaration of Independence—the opening “Four score and seven years,” in fact, points directly to the year 1776. There is one important difference, however, between our foundational political document and the Gettysburg Address: the Declaration of Independence asserts the “self-evident” truth that “all men are created equal,” whereas Lincoln refers to human equality as a “proposition.” What was self-evidently true to the men of 1776 had been challenged and even rejected by later generations, leading to a renewed defense of slavery, the great sectional divisions within the Union, and the hostilities then engulfing the nation. Likening the nation’s founding principle to a mathematical theorem, Lincoln suggests that the truth of this “proposition” is not immediately self-evident for all, but must be demonstrably proven to be true.”  historyplex “By insisting that…

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  I watched two moms, one my own, the other my wife. A third would be my wife’s mom. All these have a common thing – close ties with their offspring. The children love mom not because she is perfect or even for her giving, but this – she is always in their corner, no matter what. Moms forgive their children — at least the ones I have known. They so never lose hope that their son or daughter will be great or at least be OK. They pray for the kids and worry. Most worry is sin, but not for moms; it becomes sanctified worry. The kids know about this worry and it guides, even restrains them away from certain paths of sure destruction. In order for a kid to go wild he has to find a way around his mom. He has to disregard her. No matter, mom will visit sons in county jail, or…

Read More Mother Guides

On this day 12 years ago our son Joshua went to heaven. Now, what do we want? To see him again soon. You lit up our lives for a short 25 years and we miss you today, Josh, and the wait seems long; but eternity is longer. Can’t wait! St. Augustine says: He that loveth little, prayeth little; he that loveth much, prayeth much. What do you want? Surprisingly we rarely visit this thought. What do I need, what can I eat, what do I need to do and what does God want, are questions more common. Christians say, “I lost my vision when things didn’t work out and now I am just meandering.” “What do you want?” When I dutifully focus on my Savior. He says “what do you want?” Some folks in the Bible got healed because when Jesus asked them “what do you want?” —they had an answer.…

Read More What do you Want?/12Years

Parking was easy; we had a small rental car, low curbs and no real space markers. Pay at the credit card machine, don’t push the wrong buttons; decide how much time needed and add amounts slowly. Place your ticket on the dash visibly. We bought time together. Brother to brother, we were enjoying each other’s rare company. To the used book-nook, yes the sign said “open.” Mildew hits the nostrils, faintly, then stronger; the stay would have to be shortened. What treasures would be found? — Civil war, Christianity, Sociology, Nazi Germany? Personal stories of psychological exploration, biography of a war spy, sports strategies, the brain book; mining for gold, we endured as long as possible. Throats red, we paid and left; but happy with our tiny jewels. A free day, great conversation followed us throughout, unforced but “come as it may,” we enjoyed the next thought, and the next.…

Read More Not Groundhog, but Turkey Day

“How you feelin?” Bill Kraski loomed a giant among the weak. My first words to him were always, “how you feelin?” For as long as I knew him, Bill was a member of “the walking wounded;” sometimes seemed to be “dead men walking,” Just his appearance welled up tears in me — Till he started to converse. Authentic laughter Then came the smile, a little tease, then authentic laughter, now a return to a controlled face. “Okay!?” – was a half question/half reply — he “noted” my comments. “Okay?” Next came something that required deep thought, (some details were missing), nevertheless after a few queries, profundity occurred. Bill gave us, in a short sentence, hours of meditation; the baritone spoke as a news reporter.  Bill spoke of his D.J. days, when prompted. I think he played “MacArthur Park” first of anybody. He liked Bela Fleck and anything “light jazz.” I…

Read More Remembering Bill

It’s about the people. It’s about those faces; humble, hungry, hoping, honest. To be happiness for them, make them smile, somehow fulfill; this is all. We listen, we see their hearts. Having touched the Christ, they crave more. Clearer, greater, a basket without bottom is God new-found. You and me and them; we are all conduits of joy, gardens of flower, trees of apple and pear, apricot and lemon. It flashes through us, we bathe necks, waves come belly-basket, a bale of wheat. We dine at sacred table, the foe watches; he cannot mess. Love shields, we are whole, and in finger-less embrace the souls hug. They broaden love, they widen freedom, they coat the multitude; they mask all defamation. The broken heart finds bond, mended souls synchronize, blazing passions quell, devil-fright vanquishes; I am now Him; He is now us. His is in heaven and so to me; sorrow,…

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   Love allured me as my barely remaining chance. Nothing else attracted me. My shattering had stamped out any lingering self-effort in me; even the sense of nerves stirring had vanished. Inertia bound me. I became the man under the bed covers on a cold winter morning, paralyzed. I concluded, “The next transpiration of events would take place toward me, but not from me.” Then God came to me. He found me in my pool of blood, so to speak, and said “live.” Did you hear? God began to talk to me — thoughts of love, reintegration, joining, and joy. Love counterpoised my “death of soul,” percolating the threat and leaving it to seem like a mere concoction of my imagination. Then it set on fire a new beginning. Love’s infiltrating spheroid introduced an orb of extreme well-being in me, a far superior one with warmth and surety. Now, enveloping…

Read More My Bed of Languishing

Some members in particular are given, a joint that supplies, to breathe life into our corner of the body, and invigorate our group. These folks carry not a man’s energy, which can intimidate, but a quickening that removes intimidation. These don’t ask us to perform or do things, they instead perform the things concerning us. They effortlessly serve us, sometimes unknowingly. These inspirers spread grace, the God quality, through their weakened humanity. They not only know Christ but Christ interacts with us through them. They are full of grace and truth.  This kind has been with the Savior, their face shines reflecting His presence, and the glory of grace is praised in them. They have an eternal weight of glory in their soul through trials and temptations, mostly hidden sufferings. They have wept for their circle oft, their family daily. They have encompassed themselves in God’s songs of deliverance; they…

Read More The Life Bringer

Matt and his brother Josh This past week marked 10 years since we lost Josh. He was 25. We will never forget his ways and gifts. We will see him in eternity for sure but we miss him now. His Brother Matt posted this at mattsliva.com and he says it very well. love ya Joshua Sliva by Matthew Sliva This past week marked the tenth anniversary of the passing of my brother Josh. Over the last ten years I’ve come to understand a few things a little better. Many people cope in many different ways with death; my way seems to have been in the privacy of my own thoughts. In dealing with death, I had to face the fact that my brother was never coming back. This took some time, but, in accepting this fact, I was able to move on in my life; not without my brother, but with…

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