My Grace Notes

This post was inspired my good friend Lady Barefoot Baroness at If you have not read her blog check it out today. She has lots of inspiration for you!

The premise here is to describe your life in 4 or 5 musical choices. Here is my musical description:

My childhood was filled with encouragement to imagine and think. My father often said “I don’t care what you believe but I won’t let you just regurgitate someone else’s beliefs. If your going to believe something,J, know why you believe it!”

While Dad wasn’t completely truthful with his statement about caring (he wasn’t thrilled with my choice to become a practicing Christian) I will forever be thankful that he required me to be able to defend what I believed.

Charlie Brown was my first musical role if you don’t count playing Joseph in school pageants (that was back in the day when the birth of Christ was still allowed in public school).  I was in eighth grade. I didn’t realize how this one song would set my course for the remainder of my school days.

I was the “Wimpy Kid” through most of my high school career. I was labeled “Jesus Boy” and “the Band Fag” (that last one was a name all instrument players got from our good friends on the football team). For the most part I didn’t mind the labels.  I took the comments as persecution for doing and being something that few others had the guts to do or be. I determined to just keep running kite in hand until I graduated. Then I hit my stride.

I learned about “The Piano Guys” just a week ago from Deb, another blogger friend of mine. Check out her work at and Since I heard them I have been listening incessantly to their beautifully complicated arrangements.

The last twenty-five years have gone by in such a rush. I can’t point to one thing  that I would say is THE BLESSING of those years. So much has happened: marriage, children, four or five different career paths, ministry and miracles galore! God has done so many wonderful things for me and each blessing has played its part in making life a beautiful song for the world to hear Jesus through.

I have learned that the river of life cuts deep wounds into all of our lives. No one is exempt from the cutting. It has happened to you and it has happened to me.  While we have no choice about receiving the wounds, we can choose what fills them.The gorges of our pain can run with the waters of bitterness or blessing. God has helped me to keep my eyes fixed on Him in praise through it all.

I don’t know exactly where my life is going to take me. I don’t know what adventure lies beyond this morning’s sunrise.  But I’m secure in the knowledge that my ultimate end is Heaven. Between here and there and beyond even that this eternal life promises to be a great adventure!

Please! Please! Please! share your Grace notes in a post and link back to this site so I can read them!

Share Your World With Cee Cee Pt. 34

I am loving life this Christmas season. I have tried really hard to simplify and to keep my stress level low by concentrating my focus on the Christ in Christmas. I am picking and choosing my activities and making sure that while I do a smattering of Christmassy things I keep those activities under control so that I can still live normal life… like answering these weekly questions! 🙂

  • Your most favorite fiction book? I love so many books. I’m a big fantasy reader and I think one of my favorite series was the Chronicles of Thomas Covenant by Stephen Donaldson. Currently though I am loving John Jakes American Dreams. American Dreams
  • What one thing you miss about being a kid? When I was little my friends and I used to run through the woods behind my house pretending we were superheroes. My life doesn’t  give me much time to pretend these days. I miss that. thCAE2M4N5
  • If you were an ice cream cone how many scoops and flavors would you be and why?   I would be a large orange pineapple ice cream cone because right now I am wicked hungry!
  • What was one of your first moneymaking jobs (other than babysitting or newspaper delivery)? My dad owned a restaurant. I learned how to operate the dishwasher by the time I was ten. Aside from my paper route I worked as a dishwasher from the time I was fifteen. I started waiting tables when I was seventeen and by eighteen I was short ordering. I still love to cook.

Share Your World With Cee Cee Pt. 33

Wow Cee has reached her 50th Share Your World post! Congrats Cee! As you can all see I am 17 blogs behind.  I am so sad I missed 17 weeks of questions but there is no sense crying over spilt words…. So on to answer this week’s questions…which, by the by, turned out to be a lot harder to answer than I initially thought they would be.

  1. If you were to move and your home came fully furnished with everything you ever wanted, list at least three things from your old house you wish to retain? My first question here was “Does fully furnished imply that the house comes with a piano?”               My second question was “What about a coffee maker? Does fully furnished mean we’re all good in the coffee department?”       If not then two of my items are taken up by
    my Roalnd

    My Roland

    And by

    my Keurig

    my Keurig

    Now if those things are taken care of then my three items would be100_0981 100_0982 100_0983 Books! Though this seems to be three things it’s really only one you see. My number two would be

    Great Aunt Maud's antique dishes

    Great Aunt Maud’s antique dishes


    Uncle Tom's Steamer Trunks stuffed with everything else I couldn't fit! :)

    Uncle Tom’s Steamer Trunks stuffed with everything else I couldn’t fit! 🙂


  2. Are you mostly a clean or messy person? I am officially considered “clessy”.
  3. What is the most enjoyable team or club you have belonged to and what was it that made it so? I have been privileged to be part of so many wonderful teams but I have to say my favorite would have to be the acting casts I have been a part of. “Welcome Home Sgt. Patterson” and “Four Tickets To Christmas” stick out in my memory.
  4. What do you feel is the most enjoyable way to spend $50? Why? I enjoy taking people out to eat. Though 50$ doesn’t take you to far these days fellowship over a shared meal is worth the price of admission!

Liebster Blog Award Pt. 2


I didn’t have space to finish accepting the Liebster award yesterday. In fact I went waaayyy over what I usually like to publish. So today I am going to attempt to finish up this award acceptance. Here are the requirements I didn’t finish up: Once again thank you to Kim at

C) Answer the 11 questions asked by the person who nominated you.

Here we go!

1) Why did you start blogging? I started blogging to work through familial changes I was facing. The idea of course was that life-change gives us an opportunity to reinvent the “we’ll”, that is who we are in community. I didn’t realize how far the changes would go. I also didn’t realize the blog would become more about the Source of Strength in change than about the changes themselves, but there you go.

2) What do you like most about blogging? I love the idea that I have touched people on my own doorstep and across the world. I love this group of people who have gathered around me at “R.T.W.”

3) Which book has most influenced your life? Oh that’s too easy! The Bible!

4) What is your favorite hobby? Reading!

5) If you were given $1,000,000 to give to a cause, which cause would it be? Spreading the Gospel.

6) What’s your favorite scripture? See yesterday for these answers!

7) What makes you smile? God!

8) Who is a person that you admire and why? Aside from Jesus  I really admire my lead pastor Barry Risto. He is a never-ending ball of energy directed by the cause of the Kingdom of God!

9) If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be? I like where I am thank you.

10) If you could change one thing about anything what would it be? Now that’s a loaded question but if I could change anything it would be to have Adam and Eve change their choice about eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Just think what that would change in our world today!

11) What are you most thankful for at this moment? I am most thankful that Jesus died on the Cross for my sins and the sins of all mankind.

OK this is going to have to go into day three because once again this post is getting too long! See you tomorrow


Liebster Blog Award


And a big shout out to Kim from

for nominating me for the Liebster Blog award. If you have never checked out her blog Unwalled please give her a read!

For those who may not know, the Liebster Award is an award given to blogs that have less than 200 followers as a way to show encouragement and appreciation to fellow bloggers, as well as to spread the word about new blogs. 

The conditions of accepting the award are as follows:

A) You paste the award picture into your blog.- This picture is at the top of the blog. Prettyish huh?

B) When you receive the award, you must post 11 random facts about yourself.- Those of you who have been reading me for a while have already heard about all my strange musical instruments and know how many kids I have and all the normal 11 things about myself that would make this part of the post boring; So I’m going to take a different tack with this one. I am going to share 11 Scriptures which have special meaning to me.

Here we go.

1. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to [his] purpose. Romans 8:28   This is one of my life verses. I have walked through my share of good and bad. But God turns everything! everything! everything! into a blessing if we do not forget to love Him through the good and bad times!

2. You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you! Isaiah 26:3 Peace through every moment in life is possible if we only just keep our eyes turned on Jesus. Turn your eyes on Jesus look full in His wonderful face and the things of Earth will grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace

3. Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me. John 14:6 Maybe these next two verses should have been numbers 1 and two but I am just laying these out in random order. I am so thankful that Jesus settled this issue for me all those years ago. When I came to the realization that practicing witchcraft was getting me no closer to the living God this verse cleared the way for me to repent and come to a right faith!

4. Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God.” John 3:3 The next question asked of Jesus was “How is this possible?” With man it’s not but with God it is and I am so glad that Jesus showed me I could be born again spiritually and have a fresh start on life.

5. But when people keep on sinning, it shows that they belong to the devil, who has been sinning since the beginning. But the Son of God came to destroy the works of the devil. I John 3:8 Having come from a rather potent sin background myself I was well acquainted with the devil and his demons. I actually called them angels. I talked with them took advice from them, channeled their power. I am so glad Jesus destroyed those works in me!

6.  If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. John 15:7 I love this verse because it reminds me that not all of god’s promises are unconditional. Answered prayer doesn’t come without a constant seeking of God and His will for me and for those I pray for.

7. A psalm of David. The LORD is my light and my salvation— so why should I be afraid? The LORD is my fortress, protecting me from danger, so why should I tremble? When evil people come to devour me, when my enemies and foes attack me, they will stumble and fall. Psalm 27:1,2  I love this verse because it reminds me that even when things look lost and my ship appears to be going down, I am truly unassailable as long as I stay in the place of His grace.

8. 51 But let me reveal to you a wonderful secret. We will not all die, but we will all be transformed! 52 It will happen in a moment, in the blink of an eye, when the last trumpet is blown. For when the trumpet sounds, those who have died will be raised to live forever. And we who are living will also be transformed. 53 For our dying bodies must be transformed into bodies that will never die; our mortal bodies must be transformed into immortal bodies. 54 Then, when our dying bodies have been transformed into bodies that will never die, this Scripture will be fulfilled:

“Death is swallowed up in victory. 55 O death, where is your victory?     O death, where is your sting?”

56 For sin is the sting that results in death, and the law gives sin its power. 57 But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ. I Cor. 15:51-57 Do I really need to explain why I like this one?

9.  For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the Christians who have died  will rise from their graves.  Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever. I Thess. 4:16,17 This is one of the weirdest truths in the Christian faith. It makes me smile to think that Star Trek wasn’t that far off with the whole “Beam me up Scotty!” thing!

10. The LORD appeared to us in the past,  saying: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness. Jer. 31:3 I know this was directed toward Israel, but I am grafted in…adopted. His love is for me as well and for that I can never say “Thank you!” enough.

11. Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, [which is] new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and [I will write upon him] my new name. Rev. 3:12 I just think this verse is great incentive to let the Lord liberate me from every evil thing!

I hope these inspired you! I am way over my word allotment for the day so I shall finish this tomorrow! 🙂  

Share Your World With Cee Cee Pt. 32

I know this is actually week 49 for Cee but I have only been following for 32 sessions. Have to say though this has been fun!

I have heard from my readers that my Share Your World Posts are some of their fave reading 🙂


  • What is the most incredible natural venue that you’ve ever seen in person? I have been blessed to see so much of God’s beautiful world. While I haven’t seen the Pacific Northwest I have driven the southern route to the West Coast through the Great Plains, Arizona and New Mexico. The red desert in New Mexico and the Grand Canyon were absolutely stunning. I also love the white sand beaches in Pensacola. The rolling hills of Valley Forge Park have to be figured in here as well; But I think the one picture I have in my mind right now is the moonscape of Iceland. I can still see the volcanic dirt dotted with stands of purple lupine. The snow-capped mountains rising in the distance. I would love to see that again!
  • What as your favorite food as a child? Do you eat it now? I am with you Cee. Mac and cheese was a Sunday night favorite. But Mom made it with cheese Whizz and often would cook up hot dogs in it. I still like a good bowl of macaroni and cheese but once a few years ago I tried cheese whizz. EEEWWWWW.
  • Would you travel into outer space? I used to sing with a group called “Faithful Men” one of our songs was “Steppin on the Clouds” the lyrics went something like this.In the heaven blue dawn (in the heaven blue dawn)Sometimes I get in a hurry (Gonna pass the moon) The stars and the planets (the stars and the planets) I’m gonna walk (I’m gonna walk) On that milky white way (on the milky white way) Oh, and Gabriel (me and old Gabriel) He gives the signal (he gives the signal) I’m gonna leave (I’m gonna leave) For heaven to stay (for heaven to stay).   So I suppose someday I just might travel through outer space!
  • Tell how you are feeling today in the form of a weather report. (For example, partly cloudy, sunny with a chance for showers, etc.) Sunny with cloudless skies! Light and variable warm winds coming from the south! 🙂


Share Your World With Cee Cee Pt. 31

Happy week after Thanksgiving everyone! 🙂 I trust that you are all still enjoying the turkey and turnip soup, the chicken pot pies and the cold chicken and stuffing sandwiches. I am eating chicken and rice casserole as I answer Cee’s great questions!

  • What feeds your enthusiasm for life?  Jesus Christ is all my hope and stay. He is my life source and the fire deep in my bones. The thought that I shall dwell with Him forever in eternity causes me to wake everyday with a fresh hope!
  • If someone made a movie of your life would it be a drama, a comedy, a romantic-comedy, action film, or science fiction?  My life would definitely not be an action movie (Indiana Jones I am not) and no one is going to mistake me for the romantic lead. But  a drama driven by sarcastic humor? I think most people could buy that one.
  • If you were to perform in the circus, what would you do?  I’d be the guy with the little white dogs in the shiny blue tails and top hat. 🙂
  • You are given $500 and the chance to exchange it for one of two envelopes. One envelope contains $5,000 and one contains $50. Do you make the trade? Why or why not? I’m not much of a gambler. I’d probably keep the $500.00


Share Your World With Cee Cee Pt. 30

I absolutely love the questions this week Cee!  By the way I have heard from some of my readers that this weekly post is their favorite bit of my writing. Thanks for being such a blessing! Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

  • Would you accept $10,000 to shave your head and continue your normal activities without a hat or wig while not explaining the reason for your haircut? I would absolutely shave my head for $10,oo0.oo. As far as not telling anybody the reason… sure that would be almost fun. I would just tell people they have to keep guessing. 🙂
  • Which of the following restrictions could you best tolerate:  leaving your country permanently, or never leaving the state or area in which you live now? I think leaving the country permanently would be a great adventure!
  • If you had to spend one weekend alone in a single store but could remove nothing, which store would you pick? I like Cee’s idea of a furniture store. We have one nearby that also sports a restaurant and an IMAX. So Jordan’s furniture would be my choice.
  • If you could have a servant come to your house every day for one hour, what would you have them do? Light carpentry. You did say it was skilled labor right? 🙂



Have you ever had one of those months?

I think I have just come through one of the busiest falls of my entire life! I finally hit the writer’s- block -wall this last weekend and got thrown right out of the blogging truck. You know it’s bad when you can’t even come up with a decent photo blog on the theme “green”.

Anyway, as I was laying there on the literary pavement trying desperately to come up with something witty to say to y’all, I realized I was going to miss a few days. I can’t tell you how hard it was to just stay silent  so my thoughts could catch up with me. I hate setting goals (like daily blogging) and not meeting them but now I am resurfacing!

I think this song says it all!

Have you ever been here?

Oh BTW how do you like the new look?

Share Your World With Cee Cee Pt. 29

Well while Cee’s autumn seems to be starting, ours  is ending. Our nights are beginning to get that wintry feel and snow fly was last week. Here’s what I saw on my walk the other night.


the autumn shine is being replaced with winter’s stark beauty.

Here are this week’s questions and answers:

  1. Do you prefer eating the frosting of the cake or the cupcake first? Who needs cake? If it wasn’t wrapped around the frosting in the middle I would probably discard the cake altogether!
  2. What is your favorite cheese? I love mozzarella, but on spaghetti you can’t beat a good parmesan! 
  3. What is your biggest fear or phobia? (no photos please) Failure. You would think by this point in my life I would be over that but nope.
  4. Would you dare to sleep in haunted house overnight? Probably not by choice. I figure why expose yourself to dark spirit powers unnecessarily? If you’ve got to stay in a “haunted” location I think the spirit should be dealt with first.

Thanks Cee! Great questions.