"... TO GIVE UNTO THEM BEAUTY FOR ASHES, THE OIL OF JOY FOR MOURNING, THE GARMENT OF PRAISE FOR THE SPIRIT OF HEAVINESS; THAT THEY MIGHT BE CALLED TREES OF RIGHTEOUSNESS,THE PLANTING OF THE LORD, THAT HE MIGHT BE GLORIFIED." ISAIAH 61:3
Monday, October 4, 2010
Daddy was down to visit this last week! Woo-hoooo!!
He's been preaching since 1964 . . .
and is taking a much needed sabbatical.
The Dr. suggestedordered one full year, minimum, time off. No preaching, teaching, revivals, no anything that could possibly bring on any type of stress. (You gettin' all this, Paddy?)
As the Doc so gently explained flatly put it, if we want dad to be around another year, (we do), and if he eventually wants to get back into ministry, (he does), then this time off is crucial!
The 'rents currently live in their old hometown and attend dad's childhood church. Small town America is a great place to be, kind of like 'Cheers' - everybody knows your name.
They also know where you live.
So to really get away, daddy heads to our house. He can pack up his overly frayed nerves, over-worked pacemaker, and his sleep apnea machine, throw them along with a hefty bag full of prescription drugs into the old 'red Bomber' (more on that later) and high-tail it out of town.
As it turns out, Hattiesburg is a pretty good place to 'get lost'. Dad can go to church with us and just blend in. He's not a known pastor who could be called on at any time for anything. He's just another member lost in worship.
He can buzz all over town and remain anonymous. No one here knows him.
He can take a chair and sit at the beach all day, or splash in the waves with the grand kids.
Usually his visits go a little something like this;
After all, relaxation is the main goal here!
This last trip however was a little different.
For years now, my dad has had a 'wish list' of sorts. Things he'd love to have, but wouldn't die without. The a fore-mentioned 'Red Bomber' is a prime example. In a previous life it was a Geo Metro. Why did he want a Metro, asked I? 50 miles to the gallon that's why, said he! A friend put him on to this particular little wonder a few months back, and daddy just couldn't pass on the deal. He saved it from being parted out, and after a few quick fixes, like getting the doors to close and putting tires on it, he finally had the car of his, ahem, dreams!
With that one checked off the list, daddy was on to the next conquest - a camper!
Up until now, practicality had always won out in the 'Great Camper Debate'. But this time the RV gods dropped a golden opportunity right in daddy's lap.
Just a few miles down the road from us, and auction house was having a big sale on campers. Crazy good prices!
Yeah, an auction house. I'm sure that's exactly the kind of calm, serene atmosphere the Doc was recommending. (smirk)
Anywho, when daddy heard about the sale he headed down for the week.
It wasn't as relaxing as usual, but he accomplished his goal. After 4 days messing around at the auction house, blood pressure through the roof at times, I'm sure, he was the proud owner of this little baby;
Did I mention he called an old preacher buddy (the one who sold him the Metro, of course) and told him about the sale? Yep. A quick nine hour drive later, he and his missus were here buying a trailer of their own!
It wasn't exactly a laze-about week, but there was one quiet evening spent at the beach. And a new 'toy' to play with!
The only thing missing was mom. She, bless her heart, was working. She has a wonderful job that she'd love to keep for a few more years!
Until then, daddy will be tweaking the trailer and, as he put it, 'frilling it up'. So that when mom does retire, they can runaway together - in style!