Being at home on a Sunday morning was interesting. I miss being at church. So, I did some channel-switching to see some TV preachers and hear their messages. It's hard for a pastor to be totally non-judgmental or un-biased when watching other preachers, especially those who get a lot of hype on the religious programming networks.....ha ha. But, I will not tell you my opinions.....only that I was blessed by some and turned off by others. I flipped through and saw some of Franklin Jentezen, John Hagee, Joel Osteen, Ed Young, Charles Stanley, David Jeremiah and a few others I had not heard of. Anyway, one can feel lifted spiritually through "church by television," but you can't experience the warmth and love and fellowship of a congregation through the TV screen. Once again, it is evident how important church attendance, church fellowship and church involvement is! I love my church congregation so much! It is small in comparison to the mega-churches, but our fellowship is sweet...and we see God's hand touch the lives of many that the world has rejected!
Finally, last Thursday I felt like my strength was returning and the "bug" finally gone.
Last Friday morning, I dropped by to visit David McCullough who has been diagnosed recently with colon cancer stage 4. He is out of the hospital and back living at the Sober Living House in Fontana, where he is a house manager for the program there. He has had one round of chemo and is waiting for authorization for the second round from Medi-Cal. Dave had taken a shower the day before, and clumps of hair were falling out. He went to the barber and got his head shaved. Here is a picture of him and friend Louis.
On Friday evening, I had a wedding rehearsal scheduled. The couple had attended our church in the past, and are now attending Harvest in Riverside which is closer to them. For various reasons, they were not able to have a pastor there do their wedding, so they called me. I was happy to be a part of their special day.
It was an outdoor, backyard setting for the wedding day. It was at 11 am on Saturday morning. The sky was blue, the weather was nice and the day went smooth.
On Sunday morning, we had an ensemble group called "Light" come from California Baptist University to come and present a concert for our worship hour. It was a blessing as they shared in testimony and song about the Good News of Jesus Christ. I began to feel very old as they told their ages, year in school and major in school. None of the nine students were born before 1990! They shared that CBU now has over 6,000 students enrolled this semester.
Later, I told some of them my experiences at (then called) California Baptist College. I started as a freshman in 1968, where we had about 700 students total and the tuition was $25 a unit! Yes, my friends, times have changed. We took them to a little Mexican restaurant on Mission Boulevard down from the church called Dos Pablos for lunch.
During the worship hour, I also had the privilege of leading in a Baby Dedication service. The dedication was a joyous time, and the baby (Cecilia) came to me with open arms and a smile as I held her to pray for her.
Then, yesterday afternoon, we drove over to Chatsworth for the Third Anniversary for The Vision Plus Church 2 of Chatsworth with Pastor George Nelson. It was a glorious day indeed.
I got home late last night, and both Sondra and I were exhausted. Tired. But a "good" tired! Today, we are watching the grandkids -- Bailey and Brynnlee. They are too much fun.