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The Journey Continues: 2019 Highlights

Sunday, January 12, 2020

I returned to Texas in July 2019, after two years in upstate New York, where Judy and I spent time with our youngest granddaughter.

Through modern technology I was able to continue the “Journey Continues" column for the San Marcos Daily Record. Most people did not know I was writing about folks in my hometown from New York state.

Summary of the New York experience: brutal cold winters, beautiful falls and springs, good drivers, same Jesus, strong believers, and time for reflections which resulted in the establishment of the Veterans Patrol a faithbased nondenominational Veterans support group.

"Jesus said…'Go home to your family and tell them how much the Lord has done for you and how he has had mercy on you.'" Mark 5:19b

Observations on returning to Texas: Speeding — after crossing the Red River and driving the speed limit on the Interstate, a pickup pulling a big, loaded horse trailer passed me going 85 mph. Texas men wear hats and belts and carry pocketknives. I witnessed a real Texas cowboy eating a pint of Blue Bell butter pecan ice cream with his pocketknife. I was glad to go back to my barber Mr. Silva in Staples for a good $ 7 haircut.

Looking back at all my 2019 columns I want to highlight the following:

The only column I repeated from previous years “word-for-word” is the Nativity Play, this two-part series offers the complete story of Jesus’ birth as recorded in Matthew and Luke.

Encouraged by Bonnie Pecina, CM Allen Public Housing coordinator, poet Cathy Carson wrote “Thank you, Lord," from Carson’s book, "Inspirational Poems."

From Redwood Baptist Church: The Mission Good Neighbors’ 10-week reading program continued; along with Bible teaching and the SMCISD summer feeding program.

Rose Ann Bilodeau said: “It doesn’t get any better than telling kids about Jesus as they practice their reading skills.”

From Phil Walker’s “walking staff ministry” that reflects his talent, creativity and generosity. Beginning in 2004 he has made hundreds of personalized staffs from crape myrtle or cedar wood. These are greatly appreciated by the recipients.

When you love someone, you want to give to them.

Faithful readers, you know I have written more columns on veterans than any other topic over the last four years, especially on Memorial Day and Veterans Day. I am a Christian and a veteran — both are deeply woven into my journey. A soldier’s purpose is to protect life, not take life. I believe it is our privilege to remember the fallen and their families. "Their blood may dry and fade, but it will always stain the hearts of loving families.” As for veterans, I invite all to attend a meeting of the Veterans Patrol , organized as a faith-based support group where one feels the camaraderie and warmth of fellowship with the mission of “veterans standing together in faith to support each other for inner place.”

The next meeting is Jan. 27 at 7 p.m. at Abundant Life Christian Church, 20131 Highway 80.

San Marcos Record

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P.O. Box 1109, San Marcos, TX 78666