(Taken July 10, 2006, from the archives.)
On our trip home from preaching at a church in the hill country, we stopped in Llano, TX, along the river of the same name and discovered the results of an annual festival held at Grenwelge Park, a rock stacking festival. Apparently, the good people of Llano have a festival every year in which people come in and stack rocks on top of each other. It is a competition and there is even a championship for it. In the words of Dave Barry, I’m not making this up. You can read about it on Texas Highways magazine.
In view of that, here are some photos from the park with left over rock stacks.
I love wind chimes. Every time Heidi and I go into Buckee’s, we have to bump into the chimes just to listen. We know we will never be able to afford them, since Buckee’s is so proud of their chimes. But it’s nice to hear the deep, rich vibrations with just a hint of barbecue sauce. (That is the predominant smell in Buckee’s.)
Here are a few shots from the central Texas B&B with tiny chimes.
Heidi and I had the wonderful opportunity of staying in a B&B this past weekend, so I could preach at a church in the hill country. For those who don’t know Texas, the hill country is the area around Austin and San Antonio that is known for its…hills. I know most people who have never been to Texas think of it as a flat desert with a skeletal cow’s head, and a funky cactus. But Texas is a large place, with lots of variety. The hill country is one such area. It is rocky, hilly, filled with cedars, lots of cactus, lots of deer, antelope, and other exotic animals. There are only two bad things about the hill country. The first is the lack of rain, and when it rains, it has a tendency to flood in low-lying areas. Heidi and I got a taste of that when we drove across an area with less than a foot of water. It took us into the on-coming lane, but thankfully, there was no oncoming traffic.
The other bad thing about the area is the influx of Liberalis Californius. This is a species that has migrated this way after destroying its own homeland area through socialistic tendencies, making their own area so unpleasant to live in, they have to migrate to Texas in order to spread their ill-gotten policies. Some how, they fool themselves into thinking that they can live the same way in a new place and get different results.
But alas, enough commentary. This is a photography post, and therefore, demands pictures! Here they are!
The following are from the industrial area in Sherman, TX. Old building always make good subjects. I would love to take the following building and fix it up into a house or apartments.
Maybe we could hide a church in this one. But definitely turn it into apartments.
This one has future art studio written all over it.
I pointed to one of the windows, upstairs on the right.
“See that room?”
Heidi said that she did.
“That’s the room where the LORD made me His own.”
We were driving across North Texas and I took a bit of a detour to show Heidi the house. In that room, upstairs on the right, is where I came to know the LORD back in November of 1990. I can’t remember the exact day, but I do know it was probably about 2 or 3 in the morning. It’s what I did when I got off work from the newspaper. I would go home, eat a quick meal, go upstairs to my bedroom and read the Bible. I couldn’t get enough of the Bible, to the point that it was causing me problems at the newspaper, and even my family.
My brothers would say, “Timmy found Jesus.” Or “Timmy got religion.”
Christ found me.
Taken from one of our forays to the lake. We’ve only missed one day this week, Wednesday, because we had to go to town for groceries. Every other day, the boys and I have loaded up into the 2000 Saturn Station Wagon ATV, and headed for the gnarly shores of Lake Texoma. We have played “monkey in the middle,” the “submarine game,” many rounds of mud ball fights with me declaring them off limits, and lots of swimming.
Here is the shot of the roots of the tree on the edge of the water. It’s a favorite spot on the lake because not only can I sit in the shade while watching the boys, I plant my chair in the water to stay cool, while reading a good book. So far this summer, I’ve read a John Grisham novel, and now Fighting the Good Fight: A Brief History of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church. You may think it boring, but I’m fascinated by it and rejoice at the steadfastness of those in the OPC.
While in Johnson City I saw this building that was being renovated. I thought it might make an interesting subject and ventured inside to capture the following pictures. You might think: “can you just walk in a building like that and take pictures?” After working in construction a number of years ago, I learned the trick to going into all kinds of buildings: look like you belong and have a purpose. So with camera in hand, I went inside and every time I lifted the camera to take a picture, the workmen inside scrambled to get out of the picture. I had to chuckle. None of them had the courage to ask me if I belonged there. All they knew was that they didn’t want their pictures taken.
When I moved to eastern Tennessee with Heidi back in 2015, I couldn’t help but being overwhelmed by how beautiful that portion of the state was. I remember driving to church our first Sunday there and seeing a small creek running along side the road, through the front yards of the people who lived along the street. Unlike Texas creeks, which only run after a good hearty rain, this babbling creek had a constant flow over rocks, under bridges, and was full of wildlife. It also has water that was somewhat clear.
In the Gospel of Luke, we find the following parable:
“When an unclean spirit goes out of a man, he goes through dry places, seeking rest; and finding none, he says, ‘I will return to my house from which I came.’ And when he comes, he finds it swept and put in order. Then he goes and takes with him seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter and dwell there; and the last state of that man is worse than the first” (Luke 11:24-26).
In this parable, Jesus gives us insight into the life of a counterfeit believer. A counterfeit believer is one who is deluded into thinking he or she is a Christian, but is, in reality, not. Jesus is showing us what is taking place in that person on a spiritual level. It’s an insight only He can give us.
I’m told, that there are no more spaces left in in the Dixie Cemetery. Unless there is a land donation, there will be no more expansions. Given that, the cemetery is full. But it’s a nice cemetery to look at as far as cemeteries go. I know, most people don’t like them, but I do.
Over the past several months, I’ve watched this boat slowly disintegrate. It was a complete boat the first time I saw it, but I think the owner has the idea of breaking it up into smaller parts to cart it off. I thought it made good photography.
William Gurnall writes:
If the provisions were left in our own hands, we would soon be bankrupt merchants. God knows we are weak, like cracked pitchers–if filled to the brim and set aside, the contents would soon leak out. He puts us under a flowing fountain of His strength and constantly refills us. This was the provision He made for Israel in the wilderness: He split the rock, and not only was their thirst quenched at that moment, but the water ran in a stream after them, so that you hear no more complaints for water. This rock was Christ. Every believer has Christ at his back, following him as he goes, with strength for every condition and trial.
The truth is that out Father often brings us to a sense of need before He provides. He wants us to feel the want of not having, so we can see that He is the One who supplies our need. He wants us to ask Him to meet our need and trust in Him to do so. He may not answer our prayer immediately, but may use the need to keep us coming back to Him. He would much rather have His children returning to Him for their daily needs instead of blessing them with riches, and have them fall away.
Character is character because it is unique. The moment you mass produce it, it loses its character. I’m sure the original TGIF’s restaurant was an unique experience. Same with the Olive Garden, Applebees, even McDonalds. But once those restaurants became mass produced they lost any claim to having character.