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To Honor a Soldier

DSC_0036, originally uploaded by Shirley Buxton.

As we prepared to land in Las Vegas, the stewardess made an announcement.

“We have someone special aboard, and we are going to let him deplane before anyone else does so.”

Sure enough after we had landed and were at our gate, everyone remained seated, then this young man arose, looked around as if he were embarrassed and gathered his bags. Applause resounded within the cabin of that Southwest plane and continued as this young man walked down the aisle and through the exit door.

It was the least we could do to honor a young soldier and to thank him for his service. May he be blessed.

SPECIAL NOTE: Don’t miss my new feature. Click on My Church Activities.

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Truly a Match Made in Heaven

If there is such a thing as a match “made in Heaven,” its evidence may be marked in the beautiful relationship between Jarena Bates and Tye Johnson, a couple who is engaged to be married. One day last May their rare love affair took on a significant challenge when her doctors told Jarena, “You are in kidney failure and must have a transplant.”

Immediately the search for a donor began. The chances of finding a kidney suitable for Jarena were considered slim. There are 5,000 people living in New York who also need kidney transplants and the average wait for an organ is 7 to 9 years. Jarena was desperate.

      Then came the miracle. Her fiancé was found to be a perfect match, and overriding the arguments of Jarena, he made the decision to donate one of his kidneys so that his beloved could live.

      “Actually, I decided to do it on my own. She didn’t want me to get tested — she didn’t want to put me through the pain and suffering,” he said. “But, I insisted.” It’s a decision, Johnson said, he never thought twice about. “When I first found out that we were a match, I knew we were meant to be together.”

      This lovely story continues for the operations were successful, and now within Jarena’s body, and functioning perfectly, is the kidney of Tye Johnson, her beloved, her saviour. Truly this must be a match made in Heaven.

      There is more here including videos taken the day of the surgery which show touching scenes between the doctor and the families. Pictures, links and other information from Fox News.

      VIDEO: The Gift of Life

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      Happy 108th Birthday, Olive

      birrhtday-close-up.jpg

      Picture from her site……………………………….

      EDIT: JULY 13, 2008 On Saturday, July 12, Olive Riley slipped from this earth to the chambers of eternity. More about that here.

      When I wrote about her, she was only 107 years old, but through the peculiar doings of a typo and the mere flip of a keystroke, I added a year to her already remarkably aged life, calling her 108. Now, feisty Olive Riley continues to defy the norm, is indeed 108 and recently celebrated with a wild birthday party. The link takes you right to the video that shows school children singing, her birthday cake and her blowing out the candles…and the wild part. It’s a scream.

      Olive who lives on the central coast of South Wales maintains her own blog–which she once called a blob–and has with good reason been called The World’s Oldest Blogger. She’s adorable and quite witty. If you have time to check around, you will find lots of material on the internet.

      I’ve gone to her site and posted birthday greetings, and in addition I’m using my site to wish her a very happy birthday, continued health, energy, life, and the eternal blessings of God. Let’s make this a gigantic card for this remarkable and blessed woman, Olive Riley. Please add your greeting, and I’ll let her know the card is here.

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      God is Back!

       

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      Taken in (See more photos here)

      The outcry began shortly after 17-year-old Andrew Larochelle of Dayton, Ohio crafted a plan to send his grandfather the gift of a flag that had flown over the U. S. Capitol. He never thought his sentiments about “God, country and family” would be questioned, but was he ever wrong. When he received the flag, he noticed the word God had been removed from the greeting he had written for the flag certificate. The outcry began, and now there has been a correction.

      God is here to stay, say members of Congress who on Tuesday presented a 17-year-old Eagle Scout with a corrected version of a certificate that accompanied a flag that he purchased to fly over the U.S. Capitol.

      “God should never have been censored,” said Ohio Republican Rep. Michael Turner, who represents LaRochelle and processed his flag request. “Our religious freedoms, protected in the Constitution, will always be challenged, and it will take all of us to be diligent to protect these freedoms.” Fox News

      In recent years, developments in our country have disappointed many of us, especially in regard to numerous blatant challenges to Christianity and to morality. Such stories as these, though, put new fire in our eyes, and hope and trust in our bones. God is Back! All is well.

      (The flag is pictured at our place in Crestline in the beautiful San Bernardino Mountains. When we’re home, Jerry posts the flag almost every day.)

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      Yellow Chrysanthemums, Strawberry Pie, and a Pot Roast

      Yellow Chrysanthemums, originally uploaded by Shirley Buxton.

      The delivery truck stopped in front of the motor home and was stuck part way into the street when I saw him through the front window. Hmm, I thought. Nobody’s birthday, not Mother’s Day or Father’s Day or anything like that. I watched the driver go to the back of the truck, take out a magnificent plant and come up our walkway.

      “Shirley Buxton?” he asked when I had opened the door.

      “Yess..”

      “Sign here, please.”

      He handed in a gigantic, yellow Chrysanthemum plant, I thanked him, and as soon as he left I began poking around until I found the little plastic holder that would give me an idea who had sent these stunning flowers.

      HAPPY FRIDAY. THANKS FOR TACO MONDAY read the card, which was signed MELINA.

      No special occasion had caused my sweet daughter-in-law to think of me, to call her florist and to place this order. The previous Monday while Joel and his crew were still here, I had invited over all the family who live here in Lake Havasu, and we had cooked and eaten tacos outside, thus the Taco Monday reference. I called Mel and told her how sweet and thoughtful she was.

      Later in the day, when I opened our RV door in response to a knock, I found the lady who lives in the next RV to ours. They’re “snowbirds,” from Montana, who leave their rig parked here year round, spend the summers at their home, then come to the RV here for the winter. We had moved into the spot next to them while they were gone to Montana, and since they have only been back a couple of weeks, I don’t know her well at all.

      But here she stood before me, extending both her hands. “Made a strawberry pie this morning, and we surely don’t need to eat the whole thing. I want you and Jerry to have these.” Smiling, she handed in deep red pieces of fresh fruit pie.

      The next day Janey called. “What are you and Jerry doing for dinner tonight?”

      “Nothing special, Janey.”

      “Well, I want to cook a meal for you. I have a new crockpot and a nice roast. Come down about 6:30.”

      Within a 48 hour period, Jerry and I had unexpectedly seen the generous, giving side of humanity. For really no reason, three families had thought of us and decided to spend a chunk of their time to minister to us. Pretty nifty, huh?

      It’s touching when I know someone has thought of me, has paused in their activities, made a call, stuck a card in an envelope, considered me when they baked a pie, or rolled a cookie or looked at a chunk of beef. For a few minutes I was there with them, inside their sweet head and in their memory bank. That, my friend, is precious to me.

      And at this moment, I’m thinking of all you who are so generous to come frequently to my site, to read my little words, to think with me about life and its processes, to cry sometimes, and at others to laugh. With some of your names I connect faces; others are invisible, your forms unknown to me–yet in the human scheme of things, we speak and think and touch. Thank you. Truly you enrich my life.

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      Anguish and Forgiveness

      To plumb the depths of a person and there find pristine virtue and untarnished valor is rare, seldom sighted among us, notable because of its infrequent reality. To detect its presence in a lighted eye neath the furrow of sincere brow, to catch a drift of telling word and its corroborating moves–moves that signal not only the philosophy, but the exhibition of this thing called forgiveness, is an almost unknown factor in our jaded society. I mean real forgiveness, gut-wrenching forgiveness, ghastly forgiveness. Forgiveness that stops the world, that snaps to attention the heads of men and women across the globe. It matters not our divergence, our cut, our color or our class…for when we see it and hear it and know it, we understand that we are seeing, hearing and knowing God. It’s that rare.

      The Nickel Mines Amish did it. They showed us Forgiveness. Awful forgiveness, anguished forgiveness, bloody forgiveness.

      Recall that just over a year ago these Amish people–a religious group who lived in Nickel Mines, Pa. on farms without electricity and other modern conveniences had their lives splintered into untold agony when a person who lived in the area, their milkman, Charles Roberts, burst into a one-room schoolhouse, and shot ten young girls. Five of them died. Unbelievably, during these atrocious actions, one of the girls, 13-year-old Marian Fisher, offered to be killed first, thinking perhaps the others would be saved. The most telling of all is that within hours of the murders, these beautiful Amish people–the families of the slain children–not only spoke of forgiving Charles Roberts, but visited his wife and children and gave them food and money.

      Picture and the following from the Pittsburg Post Gazette

      Horrified strangers worldwide sent $4.3 million to the Nickel Mines Amish settlement in Bart, Lancaster County. But the Amish, who have no insurance, used the gifts for more than medical bills.

      They gave shares to local emergency services that came to their aid and, in a move that caught the world’s imagination, to the widow and children of the man who murdered their daughters.

      “It certainly means a lot for us to spend some time with the families,” Miller said after their meeting together on the anniversary of the shooting. “There’s no other place we would have rather been this morning.”

      Also attending were community members, state troopers and officials from Virginia Tech, where a gunman killed 32 students and faculty members in April, Miller said.

      Though grateful for all the help and sympathy it has received, the Amish community is hoping to be left alone as much as possible Tuesday during the actual anniversary of the shootings.

      The New Hope Amish School, which replaced the one torn down after the attack, was closed Monday and will remain shut Tuesday.

      Read more here.

      Now consider this–also from the Pittsburg Post Gazette

      Not everyone affirms the Amish response.

      Rabbi Alvin Berkun, rabbi emeritus of Tree of Life Congregation, Squirrel Hill, and president of the Rabbinical Assembly, the international organization of Conservative Rabbis, applauds the Amish care for Amy Roberts, but not their forgiveness of Charles Roberts.

      “In Judaism, there are some strings attached. I have to say I’m sorry for what I did, I have to resolve not to repeat that pattern of behavior again and I have to ask those I harmed to forgive me,” he said.

      “Letting somebody off the hook even though they are dead doesn’t sit well with me. Society can’t function when you just wipe the slate clean constantly. He did a horrendous, horrendous thing and he did absolutely nothing to repent.”

      This post was difficult for me to put together, and I truly can say as I finish here, that from the skin of my body to my inward parts, I am shaken, and at this moment physically tremble. I knew when I broached the subject it would be difficult. For in trying to be honest with myself, I wonder…I truly wonder…could I forgive such an assault on my family as did the Amish in Nickel Springs? Am I that Godly? If I’m not, why not? Is such forgiveness indeed Godliness?

      What about you? Do you have it within you to exhibit such a sterling quality? Have you been challenged in your resolve to forgive those who wrong you? Ever had to extend forgiveness when it really hurt, when it caused anguish? Do you perhaps agree with Rabbi Berkun that forgiveness in this instance is misplaced?

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      Would You Take Down that Flag?

      I want to ask a couple of questions.

      1. Is it right that someone comes into our country, sets up a business, and then flies their country’s flag over ours?

      2. Is it right when such a thing happens that a citizen removes the offending display?

      3. You who are citizens of the United States: Would you move to Mexico, set up a business there, then blatantly and disrespectfully fly the US flag above the Mexican flag? You who are citizens of any other country: Would you disrespect any foreign country that was your host by flying your native flag in an unlawful and rude way?

      4. Would you have taken down that flag as did Jim Brossert?

      5. Should Jim Brossert be prosecuted?

      6. Would Jesus take down such a flag?

      A Veteran from Reno, Nev. has hit headlines after he took matters into his own hands yesterday and tore down a Mexican flag that was being illegally flown above a U.S. flag at a local business.

      Local news station krnv News 4 had received calls yesterday afternoon from angry residents complaining about the Mexican flag. When the station sent a reporter to investigate the Veteran took the opportunity to make a statement in front of the cameras.

      The man commented “I’m Jim Brossert and I took this flag down in honor of my country with a knife from the United States army. I’m a veteran, I am not going to see this done to my country. if they want to fight us, then they need to be men, and they need to come and fight us, but I want somebody to fight me for this flag. They’re not going to get it back.

      Story by Steve Watson of Infowires.

      The entire story and the video is here. The video is awesome, shows the flags flying, Jim Brossett taking care of the situation, and the reaction of the storekeeper. Please watch this, and tell me your reaction.

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      U S Marines Forbidden to Film in San Francisco

      Captain Greg Coralles says of this development: “This is a slap in the face of every American and every parent of men and women who are doing their duty. ”

      Tuesday, September 25, 2006 Fox News

       

      AP Sept. 24: A member of the U.S. Marine Corps stands at attention in New York’s Times Square for the filming of a Marine Corps commercial.

      They’re the strong and the proud, but the Marines aren’t free to stand on the streets of San Francisco.

      The Silent Drill Platoon of the U.S. Marine Corps wasn’t allowed to be filmed Sept. 11 on California Street in San Francisco for a segment of its new advertising campaign, a Marine spokesman told FOXNews.com.

      Instead, the elite group took its austere display to the Golden Gate National Recreation Area for the final segment of its “America’s Marines” TV commercial. The group is on a two-month nationwide tour as part of the campaign.

      Rest of the article here.

      I’m ashamed of San Francisco, a city I love to visit, a beautiful, appealing metropolis. More deserving of such opportunity–more deserving than the filmers of Rice-A-Roni, baseball teams, and soft drink bottlers– are the Marines of the United States of America. Furthermore, I’m ashamed of San Francisco for trying to prevent the Blue Angels from performing during Fleet Week, and for disbanding ROTC in their Junior High schools.

      No matter our political preferences, our views on the war in Iraq, our consideration of health care issues, our stance on racial progress in our country–no matter–our military of every branch deserve our respect, honor and full consideration.

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      A Tribute to Terri Gurrola

       

       

       

       


      As you plainly see, she is wearing military fatigues. Her name is Terri Gurrola. The touching scene depicted here reveals her deep emotional commitment to her family, and to her country, as she hugs her tiny daughter, having been in Iraq for seven months. I understand “She’s home for a mid deployment R&R and will be going back to Iraq for at least another 7 months. She’s a medic near Ramadi, one of the most dangerous areas in Iraq.”

      Thank you for your sacrifice. Thank you for your service to our country. May your family be blessed.

      Picture courtesy YouSayToo.

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      Remembering…

      Remembering…, originally uploaded by Shirley Buxton.

      I cannot go to bed on this significant day without posting a few comments that speak to the condition of my beloved country. Unless we come to our senses, I truly fear for the future of the United States of America.

      The behavior of many of our senators is outrageous and incomprehensible. To speak with such disrespect and disdain to General David Patraeus (beginning even before he said a word) as he appeared to present his report before the senate yesterday and today was patently pompous, crasse and shameful. The despicable attack on his character by MoveOn.org in the New York Times should be condemned by everyone. General Betray Us, he was called in the ad sponsored by the far left activist group. Several Members of Congress have spoken against the slanderous ad, while others–including some who are running for the presidency of the United States–have not.

      Such behavior directed to a four-star general whom the senate unanimously voted to confirm, is a burning shame. Such stinging castigation and besmirching jabs are inglorious and unworthy of our leaders and of our country, still the greatest in the world.

      I call your attention to the Word of God as the prophet Isaiah speaks:

      “Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!” Isaiah 5:20

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