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“It Was the Best of Times, It Was the Worst of Times.”

Jerry Comforts Tina, originally uploaded by Shirley Buxton.

Jerry began his sermon with the words of Charles Dickens opening line of his book, A Tale of Two Cities. And indeed on Sunday morning, at Christ Alive, it was the best of times. It was the worst of times.

For on Saturday, Ernie Hudson had died. (follow the link and scroll to November 4th for more about Ernie). Despite their raw grief, Ernie’s wife Tina and her daughter had come to Christ Alive for the Sunday morning service. Already scheduled was the dedication of our great-grandson, Brody Wake. And so, honor was paid to Ernie, and condolences to his family and many friends. And to Lindsi and Ryan were given charges to be faithful parents of Brody and his big brother, Evin.

It was the best of times. It was the worst of times. For in that one service, the full cycle of life was seen; the fresh promise of life and the sure inevitability of death.

Brody had just slobbered all over Jerry.
Ryan is Mike and Melina’s son.
There was standing room only, so we must buy more chairs this week.
And so today, I offer this tribute to two fine families: first to Tina and to the memory of Ernie. Second to Ryan and Lindsie Wake.
My devotional blog is here.

By Shirley Buxton

Still full of life and ready to be on the move, Shirley at 83 years old feels blessed to have lots of energy and to be full of optimism. She was married to Jerry for 63 years, and grieves yet at his death in August of 2019. They have 4 children, 13 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren...all beautiful and highly intelligent--of course. :)

6 replies on ““It Was the Best of Times, It Was the Worst of Times.””

Standing room only!? WOW! That is incredible. Your post explains why people are gathering there in larger numbers…you care and show the love of a God who cares! Our prayers are with you.

John 12:32
“And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.”

Thank you, Gene for coming by and for your sweet words. Have to tell you it’s not as phenomenal as it sounds, for we only had 43 chairs. Four persons were standing. But that’s great for us and we’re very excited, and we’re off to buy chairs this week. The Sunday we had 85, we expected a large crowd so we rented chairs. The attendance this past Sunday was a surprise to us, although we are steadily growing. God is good, isn’t He? Takes our pitiful efforts and effects His work. Love it!


You are right, Sis. Buxton! YOU don’t feel like it’s sacrifice, but to others, it seems so.

Now that I think more about it, when I work for the kingdom, even if I get tired, I don’t feel it’s a sacrifice either. It’s the most satisfying feeling in the world!

Love and appreciate you!

You’re right, Tena. It’s all in the perception of what we’re doing. I know you work extremely hard on projects at your church, and probably fall exhausted into bed at night. But when the project is our heart–our passion–it just is not sacrifice. It’s privilege.


I want to mention, also, the great sacrifice, your son, Andrew made in order to begin the Lake Havasu church. Many, many (don’t know for how long) Fridays he would drive from his home in San Diego to teach a Bible Study there in Lake Havasu with his brother, Mike. Back and forth, week after week. I know he got tired, but look at what his sacrifice and efforts have produced! Thank you, Andrew and Shawnna! Great, will your reward be in heaven, also!

Now, you’re right about that Tena. Andrew sacrificed greatly–as did Shawnna–during those long months he drove here from San Diego nearly every week. It’s at least a five-hour drive. Andrew was starting his own church, he works a secular job hanging drywall, and at that time he had four children. I am very proud of both him and Shawnna.


What wonderful, mixed, feelings I had while reading this post. Happy, sad.

Proud…of you and Bro. Buxton. You two are two of the most unselfish people I know. Giving of yourselves for the Kingdom when most retired couples are traveling or doing hobbies or things just for themselves. Great! will your reward be in heaven. When I grow up, I plan on being just like you. πŸ™‚

So glad about the chair problem. πŸ™‚ Yipee!

Hello, Tena. You know this does not at all feel like sacrifice. Look at all those people…look at Mike! could it be sacrifice to be here to help lead them to know Jesus? We’re not sacrificing–we’re exceptionally blessed.


I am sorry about your friend Ernie.

So good to see your family on such a joyous occasion. Happy for you.

I am so excited for your and your chairs problem! Awesome report! Didn’t expect less from our Great God working thru you and Bro Buxton – faithful servants. We are believing the same for us.

God bless you today Sis Buxton.


Catherine, thank you for your kind and uplifting words. May we all run out of chairs. πŸ™‚


Oh Sis. Buxton,

Please expresses our condolences to Ernie’s wife & family, and to Michael, over the loss of his friend. I’m so sorry. What a loss.

Congratulations on the dedication of your GREAT Grandson Brody, he is gorgeous. You all look beautiful.

And, HALLELUJAH! on having to buy more chairs – what a fantastic problem to have. It’s so exciting to see what God is doing through you.

We love you guys, and keep the Lake Havasu church in our prayers.

HG & crew

Holly, we’re so sad about Ernie. He went so quickly, after showing signs of improvement. I hate cancer. But I love God and appreciate all He is doing for us here in Lake Havasu. We’re very encouraged, although there are things we want to happen, that haven’t yet. But we’ve only been here ten months, and I’m quite aware that in that short period of time, a Church cannot be fully built. But we’re making great headway. Thank you for praying for us. Thank you so much.


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