Help Us Help Others

Help Us Help Others
Chaplaincy Clark County

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

I don't want to be a bathroom door

Good morning,
I pray the day is finding you well.

I was sitting out by the river this morning reminiscing about the ride.

One of the things that came to mind was the question, “What do you think about all day on a bike?”

I do not carry a radio or anything that will distract me; I like to ride along just thinking about things, I never seem to get bored with my thoughts. During our ride, we rode through Navaho Nation and my thoughts went to them. How they feel that they are living in occupied territory. The feeling of their hopeless situation is ever present.

I thought about them a lot.

I also thought about bathrooms, more aptly bathroom doors.

For the life of me, I cannot figure out why they open to the inside of the bathroom.

One only goes to the bathroom during a time of need.

I only go to the bathroom during a time of need; I do not go to the bathroom to just be there. When I enter the bathroom, I push the door open and walk in. I do what I came to do, wash my hands, dry my hands and turn to leave. This is when I notice that there is a pull handle on the door. The handle is either brass or stainless steel, depending on the bathroom.

Now I have a dilemma, there is no way of getting out of the bathroom without touching the handle, which will just get my hands really germy again. If there is a paper towel, I can grab one and use that to open the door, but sometimes there is nothing but a hot air machine, which leaves very few options and requires some imagination on how to open the door. There have been times where I had to wait for someone to walk through the door so that I could grab it with my foot, kick the door open, and walk out.

I have come to the conclusion that architects must have poor hygiene.

I have many people that walk into my office at the YMCA.

These people do not come to my office to just be there, they come in because they have a need. Often times they sit in the “chair” and recount a hurtful experience. Many times, they went to see someone about their problems and before they left they felt germier than when the first went to see them.

I have a library in my office.

Staff and members come in and grab a book.

I have a rule; there are no books in my library that I have not read.

This way people can read a book and then we can discuss it together. One of the staff is reading Philip Yancey’s “What’s so amazing about grace.” There is a story in the book where a woman who had had a pretty rough life and made some pretty bad choices and was contemplating suicide. A counselor asked her, “Have you tried going to church?” Her response was, “Why would I go there? I feel bad enough already.”

I think about that statement often.

When I talk with people, there are times I have to correct them, I do my very best to do this with love.

I really do not want to be a bathroom door in someone’s life.

I want them to feel the cleansing power of Christ.

Not the germy feeling of judgment and self righteousness.

Blessings,

Monday, July 30, 2012

It is good to be home

Good morning,
I pray the day is finding you well.

I am home from the trip; actually, I got home Saturday afternoon.

When I got to the house I looked at my odometer and found that I had traveled right at 4,600 miles, truth be told I rode 4,595 miles, I actually thought about riding 2.5 miles past the house and back again just to make it 4,600 but my butt was sore and I was ready to get off the bike.

We saw many amazing things and covered a lot of miles, we had a great time.

Of course, there are things to be done post trip along with some honey-do’s that always seem to accumulate while I am gone.

I unpacked my bike.

I set up my tent, cleaned the tent, swept the tent out, repacked the tent, and put it away ready for next year.

I gave my bike a much needed washing. It still had Arizona clay on it.

Actually, I took it to power wash and power washed it. I like taking my bike to a place that recycles the water, instead of washing it in my front yard, this way the soapy water is caught and reused instead of soaking into the ground along with all the other things that just shouldn’t soak into the ground.

I think about things like this.

After I was done with the post trip duties, I started on the honey-dos.

I changed the oil in three cars and washed two of them. Actually, I found a place that was doing oil changes for $15.00 dollars and took the cars there to have the oil changed; they even threw in a carwash. Once again, I validated this by; I cannot change my oil for $15.00; I do not have to collect the used oil and try not to spill it on the ground; I used a car wash that recycles their water.

I am an avid reader.

If I am sitting somewhere I will occupy my time by reading; there is nothing worse than sitting somewhere with nothing to read.

In dire instances I will read anything that is on the walls, t-shirts…you name it even hairspray bottles, it is amazing what is in hairspray.

Laurie and I are sitting there in the oil changing place, and Laurie brought a couple of Good Housekeeping magazines. Someone had given her these magazines, the one I was reading was from May 2012. I am skimming through the magazine; women’s magazines baffle me, there is no rhyme or reason to them.

I run across and article called, “She inspires me; Unforgettable stories about mothers and daughters who found beauty and strength in each other.” I start reading about these two daughters who were the winner and runner-up on The Biggest loser, 2011. Sometime during the show, the girls came home for a visit. This is what Betsy, the girls mom said, “Hannah sat my husband and me down for a candid discussion about what could happen to us if we didn’t lose weight.” She went on to say, “My size was weighing me down, too. I was achy and lethargic, and I wanted that same feeling of freedom. I joined the YMCA.”

Here I am, sitting in an oil changing place reading a women’s magazine and out pops the YMCA and how this YMCA positively impacted a life.

After she returned home after the show Hannah said, “My mom didn’t have anyone to push her, yet she lost weight.” What we know but Hannah did not is that the YMCA is like family. We encourage, empower, and sometimes push people to keep going. We will motive, give inspiration, and walk right alongside people as they work toward their goals.

We care.

I finished the article feeling good about the YMCA.

I started flipping pages again.

After too many advertisements and mail in coupons I ran across another article, “My faith pulled me through.” It is an inspirational story about a family and tragedy; there is a quote in the article, “I think God runs the show, completely. Life proves it every day He runs the show.”

I could not agree more.

After all, He is God and I am not.

Blessings,

Friday, July 27, 2012

Making room

Good morning, I pray the day is finding you well. I am in Richland Washington this morning. We got here last night. We pulled in to find that there was no place at the inn to lay our heads. Actually the KOA was completely full. Chuck and I left Missoula yesterday, but before we left we stopped by IHOP for breakfast. I am not really sure why they call it IHOP; I sure don't feel like hopping when I am done. As we ate breakfast we started noticing things. We notice that the walls that made up the booths were very high. We noticed that we had the feeling of isolation in this restaurant filled with people. We felt alone. We started talking about what it would look, taste, and feel like to bring a truly family atmosphere to a breakfast place. An atmosphere where people sat together, conversed, and shared there lives with one another. A place where strangers could become friends. We started thinking what would make such a place. First we would tear down the booth walls, in fact we would take away the booths altogether. We would create a kitchen environment; kind of like a Bennihana's, where the chef would prepare a meal with all the people sitting around talking while he cooked, kind of like home. Then we decided that it should be an all you can eat breakfast so people would take their time, further enhancing the community feel. Of course there would be plenty of pancakes and coffee, all you can eat. We thought this was a great idea. We started thinking up names for our new restaurant. We thought we would call it International, it sounds impressive. Then we thought Pancakes should be in the title. The next part took some thought; we wanted to portray a homey kitchen experience, but bigger, so we settled on Ultimate Kitchen. We also wanted breakfast to be more than breakfast, we wanted an experience. That's it....we would call it the International Pancake Ultimate Kitchen Experience. IPUKE We were still full when we rolled into Richland last night to find that the KOA was full. We were tired, we were hot, we really did not want to ride to another campground. We just kind of stood there. We were reminded of ancient biblical times where travelers would enter town and sit in the town square and wait. They would wait for someone to come along and offer them a place to stay. They would wait for someone to show them hospitality. Chuck and I were not invoking biblical tradition, we were just trying to figure out our next move, when out comes the innkeeper. Actually he is the manager of the KOA camp. He looks at us and says, "We are all filled up, but you guys look tired. I do have one place if you don't mind camping there. (This is when I thought he was going to pull a manger out of his hat.) and walks us over to a small piece of grass tucked in between a fence and the indoor pool. He says, "It isn't much, how much room will you need?" We said that it would be perfect and we pitched our tents. Hospitality, sometimes when you try too hard to create a space you get an IPUKE experience. Hospitality is really looking at a persons need and doing your best to create a space, no matter how small, no matter how insignificant, no matter if it puts you out just a little bit, to make their life experience better. Sometimes we come down hard on the innkeeper for giving Mary a stable to stay in. But he gave her a stable, a roof over her head, a place to lay her baby. In doing so, the innkeeper without his even knowing it gave hospitality to Christ. How often do we miss our chance to to be hospitable and in doing so miss a chance to be hospitable to Christ. And Christ said: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; (Matthew 25:35 NKJV) The Pharisees answered Him: When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? (Matthew 25:38 NKJV) Listen to Christ's words: Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’ (Matthew 25:40 NKJV) I learned a lot from a KOA manager yesterday. Hospitality is not hard. Blessings,

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Dinner with my niece

Good morning, I pray the day is finding you well. I am in Missoula Montana. Chuck and I arrived yesterday. We left Big Timber, had lunch at Mikes burgers in Livingston, and arrived in Missoula around 3pm. Before I left Big Timber I gave my niece Hannah a call, she lives in Missoula. I had not seen her in a few years and when she said that we should go to dinner when she gets off work I was pretty excited and waited patiently for 7:30pm to role around for her to come pick us up at the KOA. We went to dinner at Mackenzie River Pizza, a good pizza place; if you are ever in Missoula you should look them up; tell them that Roger sent you and they will give you a pizza for twice the cost. Not really, they will just look at you like your nuts and probably say, "Who?" We had a great time, we ordered her favorite pizza and some cheesy bread. I love to make Hannah laugh, she giggles. Hannah goes to Montana State in Missoula and is majoring in sociology and gerontology. She has a real heart for the elderly and those in the sunset of their lives. One of the things that I truly love about Hannah is her heart. She has a very big heart. She found this passion quite by accident. She took a job while in high school at a nursing home and found that there is a real need. She found that there are many that have no-one and need a friend and a helper. Hannah saw this. She decided that she would do what she could to make the lives of those she touched better. Hannah is not in it for the money; no, she is in it because she cares. Hannah is the upbeat, positive type of person who gives you hope. Life has given her some bumps and bruises, but she doesn't let that get her down. The last time I talked with her she had a boyfriend, so I asked about him. They had broken up in the meantime and her heart was broken, but she kept the dog and showed me pictures of this goofy, handsome dog that looks very happy; who wouldn't be happy with Hannah around. While we laughed and talked and laughed some more; I started to think about how Christ attracted people. How they flocked to Him. Yes, He had amazing teachings. Yes, He was God incarnate. He also was full of love. Not the kind of love that feeds on others, but the kind of love that expects nothing in return. Hannah has the love of Christ in her; it exudes from her every pore. If you cannot tell by now, I love my niece very much. Hannah, I am very, very, very proud of you. As I go through my day I will try to be more like Hannah; since, and this is just me, I believe that she models how Christ treats others, Loving others without consuming them. Hannah makes Christ smile. I want to make Christ smile too. Blessings,

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

That's why

Good morning, I pray the day is finding you well. We are still in Flagstaff. We are going to see the Grand Canyon today, I have never seen the Grand Canyon and I am pretty excited about see it. Last night, in camp, a couple stopped by and during our conversation they warned us about the thunderstorms that can happen here. They told us about the rain and the lightning. We had already ridden through a couple of these storms. One storm in particular, as we rode through Nephi Utah, was so bad we had to take shelter at a local gas station. The lightning blew out the transformers and half the town lost electricity. Looking back, sitting in a gas station during an electrical storm was probably not the smartest idea. My wife Laurie grew up in Minnesota, I grew up in Kansas. Both places have amazing thunderstorms. We can talk about them all day. How the thunderheads would come and the sky would grow dark and the lightning would dance across the sky. Back on the farm we we only had one TV station, KLOE Goodland. It was not much of a station as stations go, in fact if you remember the Mary Tyler Moore show from the 70's the newscast was much like that show. I think we even had the original Ted Knight. Needless to say there was not much on TV, it is a good thing we had thunderstorms to watch. Our house had a nice front porch; It had a porch swing and everything. Unfortunately my sister Katie and her friend Mary Ann, Mary Ann lived on the farm down the road. Swung in the porch swing so hard that the eye-bolts pulled right out of the ceiling and so the porch swing just sat on the cement slab, which sat on top the ground, which made up our porch. One day, dad and I were sitting on the front porch watching a thunderstorm roll in; it was more fun than watching KLOE. Dad was sitting in his wooden chair and I was sitting in the porch swing that was sitting on the porch. As the Thunderstorm got closer, and the lightning show was really revving up, dad looks at me and says, "I wouldn't sit in that if I were you." I looked up at him and said, "Why?" The words barely left my mouth when lightning struck the ground in our front yard. The next thing I know I am laying on my back on the front yard, gasping for air, thinking what just happened to me. I am kind of twitching and a little scared so I just lay there. I must have shot ten feet from the porch swing. I look toward the porch, and I see my dad coming to me. In my mind I start to prepare my answer of, "I'm ok thanks for asking." when dad gets to me and asks, "Are you ok? I was really scared when you flew through the air." Dad walks up to me, looks down into my eyes and says, "That's why....now get back up on the porch and sit in one of the wooden chairs before you get hit again." I didn't ask why; I just got up and sat in a wooden chair. Many years later Laurie took me to the emergency room, we thought I might be having a heart attack. They hooked me up to all these electrodes and stuff. The results came back that no, I was not having a heart attack but I did have a reverse "J". They told me that a reverse "J" is an event were your heart stopped at some point. My mother thinks it is from one of those particularly hard hits that I took playing ball. I know differently, I know that it came form the day I asked, "Why." God is a lot like my dad. He will give you a nudge to do something or not do something. Sometimes He will shock you right out of your boots if you don't follow His lead. Sometimes He will look at you and say, "That's why" Looking back, I have learned to not ask why when God gives me nudges to do something, or not do something. I have learned that I make a lot of mistakes but if I do my best to sit in the middle of His will, as best as I can discern it, He won't have to use lightning to get the message through my thick head. My dad loves me, I know that. God loves me, I know that too. I have a reverse "J" as a reminder that I am not smarter than God, or even my dad. My takeaway from that experience, is that when I hear the Spirits soft, still voice, urging me to do a certain thing, I have learned it is best to not ask....why. Blessings,

Friday, July 20, 2012

Saving us from honeybucket lives

Good morning, I pray the day is finding you well. Chuck and I are in Flagstaff Arizona. We have seen many wonderful sights and have experienced many wonderful things. One thing that I have noticed is that there are a lot, and I mean a lot, of RV's running around. We see many of them on the road and when we camp, Chuck and I like to camp at KOA's, They have laundry mats, showers, and bathrooms; things that seem to become important the farther you get from home. We noticed that there were a lot of RV's in the camp grounds. Actually we noticed a lot of RV rentals. You can always tell the rentals; for one thing they are clean, the other thing is that they have a big picture of something, which I guess is better than a big picture of nothing, which I guess would amount to a white trailer wall. Maybe that is what the other RV's have, a big picture of nothing. We saw so many rentals that we started talking about getting into the RV rental business. One thing that we did notice was that many of the Rv spots smelled really bad. Really bad in a sewage sort of way. We would watch an RV drive up, park, and then someone would get out and start dragging a hose a around, a big hose, a corrugated hose, and then stick it in the ground. I bet you can figure out what the other end was connected to. Chuck and I tried to think of a good name to call our RV rental company. Then after a curiously bad waft of air, it just came to me. I said, "Let's call it Honeybucket RV rentals." We decided that Honeybucket RV rentals probably would not be a good marketing strategy and decided not to go into that business at all. Thinking about it was giving me a headache. Just like when we were trying to invent travel mugs 30 some years ago. In the morning the RV's started to leave, and we would watch them go and say, "There goes another Honeybucket RV. I started thinking about that. Here were all these people driving down the road and they all had bathrooms in them complete with storage tanks. A mobile honeybucket. I started to think a little more deeply. I started to think how our motorcycles do not allow us to take any unnecessary garbage with us. We are forced to carry the bare essentials. Well exterior garbage anyway. We still have more than enough room to carry our own internal, personal garbage. In a metaphorical sense we are our own mobile honeybuckets. Then my thoughts turned to Christ and how he can cleanse us of all our personal garbage, if we would just allow Him to. How he can make us clean as a baby. In Christ we are new creations, the old is gone the new has come. 2 Cor. 5:17. I think I will let Christ do what He does best, will you. Blessings,

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Things a horse taught me

Good morning, I pray the day is finding you well. I realized this morning that I failed to tell you that Chuck and I annual ride. We spend the better part of two weeks riding around the country seeing the sites. We started Sunday morning and rode to Mountain Home Idaho. Monday we rode from Mountain Home to Filmore Utah. Do you know what is in Filmore? Not much. Yesterday was a great day. We traveled through some pretty amazing country. As I rode along on my bike I started thinking about Tinker. Back on the farm we had a horse named Tinker. She was half quarter horse and Half Shetland pony. I guess that is why I have a dog that is half golden retriever and half basset hound. I seemed to be drawn to the unusual. Tinker was the horse that all the kids learned to ride on. She was a great kid horse. Looking back, I was really lucky to have been able to learn on Tinker. Tinker had her quirks though. She did not like saddles, so we all learned to ride bareback. Dad would put us on her back and she would start walking. At first just staying on her back at all was hard. She would walk along and before long I would start to slide off to one side. Tinker would feel me sliding and she would start walking almost sideways twisting her back in a vain attempt to keep me from falling off. By the time I slide down one side or the other she would be at a complete stop with her back twisted as far to which ever side I had fallen, then would give me the classic Tinker look. There I would be laying on my back, on the ground, and she would crank her head around and look me straight in the eyes as if to say, "Moron, get up and get back on." I would get back on, which by the way resembled nothing like the cowboy movies with the cowboy throwing a leg over like a gymnast and riding off into the sunset; no a kid grabs anything he can hang onto and kind of jumps the best he can and then scrambles and kicks his way back onto the horse. It is quite a process really. Tinker would just stand there patiently allowing me to pull her mane, kick her belly, lay on my stomach, pull a leg over, finally sitting up on her back. She would wait for me to get ready and then start walking again. I would fall off and the process would start all over again. When we got the walking part down, Tinker would start trotting training. Tinker must have had 15 different trots. No matter how hard I would kick her or say, "Come on Tinker lets go." Tinker would just trot a little faster. I don't know if you have ever ridden a horse, but trotting bareback is like sitting on top of a jack hammer. Have you ever seen a baby bouncing on a gram pa's knee, that is what I am sure I looked like. It is not very comfortable, but Tinker was a kid trainer. She would trot, I would fall off, she would give me the look, and I would scramble back on. After I mastered the trot Tinker moved on to cantering and finally galloping. I was always amazed, we could be half a mile from the house and she would just stand there waiting for this goofy kid to get up and back on. The other horses would have just bolted to the barn, free of their encumbrances. Tinker finally taught me how to ride. By the time she got done with me I could ride just about any horse. They would try to get me off but I would just sink myself into their withers like I had crazy glue on my butt. As I rode through Utah, I thought about Tinker. I thought how patient she was with me. I thought how I might never had learned to ride if she had not taken the time to teach me, really teach me, not just go through the motions. As I rode through Utah, I thought about the YMCA. I thought how we have the opportunity to teach kids, adults, families how to become whole. Psychiatrists would call it self-actuated. I thought what an awesome responsibility it is. Tinker taught me how to be patient. Tinker taught me that everyone is learning something. I will try to do a better job of emulating Tinker. I wonder how often Jesus felt like Tinker. Teaching people, watching them fall and get back up. He never left them either. I bet Jesus feels like Tinker with me sometimes too. He never leaves me either. Have a great day, I know that I will. Blessings,

Monday, July 16, 2012

See God through the rearview mirror

Good morning, I pray that the day is finding you well. I woke up this morning to the sounds of crickets chirping; I thought how nice is that. After a few chirps I realized it was my alarm clock going off. I mumbled some things and then turned it off and went back to sleep. A few minutes later, crickets start chirping again. I role over turn the alarm, yes the one that I turned off a few minutes ago, and turn it off again. I guess God wanted me to get up. As I laid there awake early in the morning I realized something.....I have to go to the bathroom! This seems to gain importance as we get older. I look up to heaven and say ok, I'm getting up. So now I am sitting here in Mountain Home Idaho at a KOA camp contemplating things. When we got to the KOA camp my friend Chuck and I asked about Don, he was the guy that used to check us in. The new girl said he is retired and is not doing very well, he has cancer. We met Don a few years ago after a long ride from Yellowstone park. It was a hot and windy day. We had been riding hard and we were worn out, our bikes were out of gas, so this seemed to be the stopping point for the day. We pulled into the KOA looking rode-worn. Don greeted us in his typical Don fashion; you see Don is an old world war two veteran and retired navy. His speech and mannerisms come right out of one of those old films, you now the ones I'm talking about, he is an old sea dog. He has anchors on his forearms and hold-fast tattooed on his figures. I was in dire need of a shower, so I asked Don, "Are there showers here?" Don answers, "We got showers, they're in the poophouse." Now that isn't really what Don said, but I'm not an old sea dog. When he said this my mind immediately went to an outdoor privy with a hose attached. I am not fond of outdoor privy's. Don says, "I will show you where it is." He walks us out of the main office, across the hall to a door with a code box on it. He types in some numbers and opens the door. We walk into the most beautiful bathroom a camp ever had. It had marble floors, very spacious, air conditioned, and the best showers in the world. Don says, "Welcome to the poophouse." and smiles. I look at Don and he laughs. Laurie and I live in a house by a river. We are in the process of closing which is taking long than any of us thought it would take. At first I was wondering why. Both Laurie and I continued to feel that we where still in the middle of God's will regarding the house but could not figure out why the delays. We were coming back from our anniversary weekend, we celebrate anniversary weekends; this may sound over the top but I know someone who celebrates birthday months, so we feel an anniversary weekend is just right. As we walked to the front door we found a package. We opened the package and inside was a book, a house blessing book. Caryn, who by the way is regarded as one of the family now, gave us that book. Caryn is who we are buying the house from. I emailed Caryn to thank her; Caryn emailed back. Caryn is an amazing women of God. She said that two years before her family started praying for just the right people to buy the house. We are no longer worried about the house. It will close, everything will be alright. Jerimiah 29:11 comes to mind. "For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord, plans to prosper you, not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." As Chuck and rode yesterday we thought about Don, we thought about the poophouse. I also thought about the river house and Caryn. It is a funny thing; when you relax and just let God be God and trust in Jesus, it is amazing who you meet. Chuck and I will visit Don before we leave today. We will talk with him and pray with him. Caryn and Laurie will be praying as well, I know that. Will you pray for Don with us? Blessings,

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Hootin and Hollerin at the river

Good morning, I pray that the day is finding you well. One of the best things about the house on the river is it is so peaceful. It is a place where a person can sit, relax, and learn how to breathe again. I like to say that it provides a “thin spot” to Christ. Laurie and I have chairs that face the river and we sit in them, listening to the river, reading and watching for the deer that like to cross the river near our house. It is very peaceful. It is very peaceful unless our neighbor’s nephew is having a party. Tuesday night as Laurie and I were getting ready for bed the music started. It was country western and the speakers worked very well, this is to say it was very loud. When I left Wednesday morning for work the music was still playing, Laurie told me later that it finally ended around 9am. Considering the length of time that the music played and the volume which made it impossible to disregard I will have to talk to this young buck about having more than four or five cd’s in his collection. I think I have most of the songs memorized. The thought did cross my mind at 4:30am to go over and tell them to turn the music down and stop “Hootin and Hollerin”. I was not a happy camper. Then my curiosity got the best of me and I wanted to see, just how long this would continue. As I stated earlier, I found out just how long it would go on. Wednesday, Laurie and I watched as cars started to show up at the property. We decided to go have a conversation with this group. We met the young bucks father who was pretty embarrassed and said that it would not happen again. We left on good terms and went home. I was pretty tired and frankly watching the bachelor is not my type of television so I went to bed early. I awoke at 2:30am to more “hootin and Hollerin”. I was just about to walk over and just yell, “Shut up and turn off the music!!!!!!!!!!” I just finished reading, “Walk in the Light and twenty-three tales, by Leo Tolstoy. One of his stories entitled, “A park neglected burns the house” tells of two neighbors who came into conflict over an egg. The story goes on to say how the conflict continued and became so big that eventually both homes were burned to the ground. Forgiveness, it is a word that we often talk about but is so much harder to put into action; Tolstoy’s story talks about how if they would have just resolved the issue with the egg both homes would have stood. Yet, as you read the story you see how easy it is to become myopic and narcissistic, taking a narrow view and think only of yourself. It even goes on talking to the point that the neighbor was only thinking of himself. As Christians, we are to put into action, a better way. Laurie and I have forgiven our neighbor’s nephew. We are not angry, a little tired, but not angry. We will have another conversation with him when the opportunity presents itself. However, we will do this out of love. A funny thing happens when you forgive someone whom you feel has trespassed on you. You stop thinking about it and find humor in the situation. Here is another story from another book. 21 Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me? Up to seven times?” 22 Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.[f] 23 “Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. 24 As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand talents[g] was brought to him. 25 Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his children and all that he had be sold to repay the debt. 26 “The servant fell on his knees before him. ‘Be patient with me,’ he begged, ‘and I will pay back everything.’ 27 The servant’s master took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go. 28 “But when that servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii.[h] He grabbed him and began to choke him. ‘Pay back what you owe me!’ he demanded. 29 “His fellow servant fell to his knees and begged him, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay you back.’ 30 “But he refused. Instead, he went off and had the man thrown into prison until he could pay the debt. 31 When the other servants saw what had happened, they were greatly distressed and went and told their master everything that had happened. 32 “Then the master called the servant in. ‘You wicked servant,’ he said, ‘I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. 33 Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’ 34 In anger his master turned him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed. 35 “This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother from your heart.” (Matthew 18: 21-35) Love and forgiveness, two concepts we fail to totally understand. Love and forgiveness, two concepts that we continually need to work on. Love and forgiveness, two concepts that we simply need to do! Blessings,