I got back in the truck and smiled, because I realized that I did not communicate my thoughts and desires very well.
Today I was having my red truck serviced. I was having the oil and windshield wiper blades changed and I received a free car wash as a bonus. Immediately after they completed the service work, they started the cleaning and washing process of my truck. They even took off my antenna and placed it in the interior of the truck so they could do a more thorough job. I was really impressed by their work and will gladly use them again. As I began to drive off, I went to use my stereo radio, but I did not receive the quality sound that I was used to having. Instead, I got this really high-pitched squelching noise. Something went wrong with my radio. Then I looked over and saw the disconnected antenna on the floor board of the vehicle. I had the antenna, but it was not where it was supposed to be.
Later, Nancy and I were about to leave for Macon when I realized that I had not corrected the problem. I was on the phone talking to someone as we were getting in the car. I used a few vague hand directives and hand motions as I handed Nancy the antenna thinking that she understood these wordless directives of mine to replace the antenna to the antenna holder. Nancy took the antenna and placed it on the outside table and got back in the truck. I was totally perplexed by her actions because I gave her the antenna and very good directions, I thought. When I got off the phone I asked her why she did not replace the antenna to its holder and she replied that she did not know what I wanted her to do with the antenna. I realized that my vague communication directives to Nancy were not so good and I got out of the truck to fix the problem. I walked over to the table and got the antenna and replaced it. I got back in the truck and smiled because I realized that I did not communicate my thoughts and desires very well. Also, I was smiling even more that the radio static had cleared up and was giving clear reception.
Take aways from this experience:
1. It is important to guard and protect your sound system.
a. Watch out!! It is even more important to protect your relationship with God others and yourself!
2. Even people with good intentions can lead you astray.
a. Even Godly people can lead you astray when the person is not tuned in to God’s call for your life.
3. When you realize your problem, own it and acknowledge it.
a. Sin, missing the mark of Christian living can be intentional or unintentional. The end results are the same, regardless of the motives. As soon as you recognize it, then own it and make the necessary changes.
4. Communicate well to others, do not assume others will understand your dilemma.
a. Communicate with clarity is necessary for better relationships with God and others. Do not assume someone is understanding your words or actions.
5. Do not become frustrated with others because they do not understand your dilemma.
a. I passed multitudes of cars and people who were nice people, but they did not know or care about my dilemma. Can you believe that? Unless someone is in the know of your situation do not be frustrated with them. Practice love and kindness. I sat in the truck with my wife and best friend, Nancy, but she did not even understand my dilemma.
6. Do not be afraid to ask for help.
a. Asking for help is a way of humbling ourselves before God and others. I have been overwhelmed with people’s willingness to help if we communicate our dilemma well. People are inherently helpful and kind.
7. Your problem may or may not be fixable.
a. Some dilemmas are simply unfixable. Learn what you can from the situation and begin to build off of the newly learned information.
8. Your antenna is your reception device for catching and transmitting the airways for your radio.
a. Like the antenna, your faith is the catching and transmitting device for your relationship with God! Stay tuned in!
Rev. Gale challenged the Broxton Circuit churches and the Lone Hill-Excelsior Charge to raise $6,000 in six weeks to install a water well in the Congo.
Six weeks later, Rev. Beverly King of Broxton UMC and Rev. Mary Ann Braswell of Lone Hill and Excelsior UMCs reported that the churches had raised more than $12,176 – enough for two wells instead of one. They presented Rev. Gale with two checks, one from Broxton UMC and one from Lone Hill UMC, at a special celebratory service of the water wells for Africa.
The five small churches, with a combined membership of less than 300 total, raised the funds by collecting donations from their communities, receiving special church offerings, hosting a pancake supper, selling baked goods, and many other ways.
In addition to raising more than $12,000, church tithes increased during this time instead of decreasing from this project. This just goes to show even the small churches can do big things when God is in it. Church leaders give God all the glory for these and many things he has done recently in their area.
I remember my little grandson, Noah, and his brief time here on Earth. I remember how excited we were that he had joined our little family. We had plans for his life from conception on. However, we only had him for 7 days. Silly me, I just knew everything was going to be okay even though he came prematurely. I remember flying out to Central America to do God’s work while he was in the hospital. I just knew that he was going to be there when I got back from my short mission trip.
I remember getting that call from Nancy that Noah was not doing well and we needed to be praying for him. Then came that painful call that he had passed away. I will never forget that day. It has been burned deep into my memory, even today.
Sometimes in life, we do not get a mulligan, a do over or a second chance, so we need to make life matter. I will always replay in my mind, “what if”. If you love someone then show them, because we are not guaranteed of the next minute. Your “what ifs” may have softer landings if you take time for your loved ones today.
After celebrating the installation of a new water well some of the Maasai Warriors wanted to give our team a “better” gift. They invited us to hike with them up the Sacred Maasai Mountain Sabache. It’s a sacred Maasai place of prayer, a holy burial ground of elders and is a great water source during severe droughts.
I heard the invitation, but I declined the offer. The other 2 team members chose to go. I was satisfied sitting right in the lounge drinking my Coca Cola and enjoying the ordinary. As they were leaving, I remember happily telling them to be safe and have a good time. After the passing of an hour or so, I began to regret my decision and wondered what they were seeing. I was very comfortable at the time of the invitation, but as time passed I wished that I had said yes, but it was too late. After about 2 hours, the first team member was returning with amazing stories and I knew as she spoke that I had made a terrible decision. After about 4 hours, the other team member was returning and she was beaming. She was telling of the scenic beauties that she had experienced. The whole time that she was descriptively talking about her beautiful experience I knew that I had missed out on something better because I was lazy, complacent, and comfortable. I will never know the great joys of hiking Mt. Sabache.
How many invitations has God invited me to participate in and I have not answered because of being complacent or comfortable? I learned a big lesson that day, that my human free will can cause me to miss the “better” and blessings of God!