Thursday, July 7, 2011

A strange mix

Goodbye to an old friend
Last week our church family was saddened by the death of our good friend and 15-year church custodian, Derry DeGuire. Derry had just retired from his position at our church back in March. He was always a hilarious story teller. He was one of those guys that funny things always seemed to happen to. He was a professional baseball player in his younger days, but still had an arm like nobody else! Derry also worked as a medical courier, and when a guy threatened to rob him a couple of years ago, Derry decked him on the parking lot of the gas station. Don't mess with the "old man!" He always acted like he dreaded Vacation Bible School week at our church because we "trashed" the building every night for a week. But he loved the kids and the kids loved him. Along with his granddaughter, all our daycare kids called him "Pappa Derry." We will all miss him.

This week my Dad is at my home visiting for a couple of weeks. I'm very grateful to be able to spend some concentrated time with him. He has been through many challenges over the past several years. After dealing with heart surgery, cancer, two knee replacements and Parkinson's, my Dad's famous line is, "I'll keep what I've got if I don't have to keep adding things to it!" He is a trooper! He keeps on going. In the midst of it all he continues to serve the Lord with his gifts and abilities. I am grateful for his godly influence in my life.

4th of July
The 4th of July was a great day of celebration and relaxation all in one. The Marshfield parade was great as always - and hot! It is quite the tradition around here. It's the longest running 4th of July parade west of the Mississippi, with something like 132 consecutive years. Our kids came home for the day and my in-laws joined us, along with my Dad, for a family cookout, a little Bocce ball  and then we capped the day off with the rodeo fireworks. God bless America!

Happy New Year(?)
It's not quite the New Year yet, but in church life, it's closer than you think! Our ministry year and fiscal year begins October 1, so this week has been hard hit with a lot of planning and preparation time for the new church year. I met with groups to enlist new committee members (we try to do as few committees as possible, but there are still a few!), to nominate new or returning ministry leaders and to do budget planning. It took several hours of planning, but a lot of good work was accomplished with some great leaders in our church family. Throw in the final planning meeting for our 150th Anniversary Celebration and I've been slammed with meetings this week. Glad it's Friday! Makes me want to break out into a Rebecca Black song!

Branson, Missouri, here we come
Tomorrow night it's time for a little fun with Dad. He's never been to Branson before so we thought we would liven things up with a little Pierce Arrow comedy! Looking forward to that!

Been a strange week with a real mixture of events. I'm thankful for God's provision for comfort in time of grief, for family, for country, for strength, for milestones and for comedy!

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