Pumpkins, Cornstalks , Hamburgers, and Lot of Fun

Yesterday I was a parent volunteer on Ryan’s first Kindergarten field trip. I even volunteered to drive three of his friends with us, and we spent the day at the Corn Maize. It was great! It was windy (everyday in Lubbock is windy), and dusty (everyday in Lubbock is dusty); but it was a great, great, great time. We got lost in the corn maze for a hour, we ate hamburgers, looked at turkeys, took a hayride, and finally got to pick a pumpkin from the pumpkin patch.

I’m so happy that I have a job that allows me the opportunity to go on field trips.

Antithesis of a Warrior

Today President Bush awarded the Medal of Honor to a fallen soldier. I was surprised to learn that it is the first one given out for the war in Afghanistan. (Two have been given for the war in Iraq.)

What did he do to deserve it? Gave his life up for another, which reminds me of John 15:13.

Follow this LINK for the amazing story of Lt. Michael Murphy.

I also found this information interesting about the Medal of Honor:

The Medal of Honor confers special privileges on its recipients, both by tradition and by law. By tradition, all other soldiers, sailors, Marines, and airmen—even higher-ranking officers up to the President of the United States—initiate the salute. In the event of an officer encountering an enlisted member of the military who has been awarded the Medal of Honor, officers by tradition salute not the person, but the medal itself, thus attempting to time their salute to coincide with the enlisted members’. By law, recipients have several benefits:

  • Each Medal of Honor recipient may have his or her name entered on the Medal of Honor Roll. Each person whose name is placed on the Medal of Honor Roll is certified to the United States Department of Veterans Affairs as being entitled to receive the special pension of US$1027 per month. The pension is subject to cost-of-living increases.
  • Enlisted recipients of the Medal of Honor are entitled to a supplemental uniform allowance.
  • Recipients receive special entitlements to air transportation under the provisions of DOD Regulation 4515.13-R.
  • Special identification cards and commissary and exchange privileges are provided for Medal of Honor recipients and their eligible dependents.
  • Children of recipients are eligible for admission to the United States military academies without regard to the quota requirements.
  • Recipients receive a 10% increase in retired pay.
  • Those awarded the medal after October 2002 also receive a Medal of Honor Flag. The law also specifies that all 143 living Medal of Honor recipients receive the flag along with all future recipients.
  • As with all medals, retired personnel may wear the Medal of Honor on “appropriate” civilian clothing. Regulations also specify that recipients of the Medal of Honor are allowed to wear the uniform “at their pleasure” with standard restrictions on political, commercial, or extremist purposes; other former members of the armed forces may do so only at certain ceremonial occasions.

Relax, Refresh, and Refuel

Climb the mountains and get their good tidings.
Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees.
The winds will blow their own freshness into you…
while cares will drop off like autumn leaves.

-John Muir

This weekend Starr and I had the opportunity to getaway for a church leadership meeting in Ruidoso, NM. (All the pastors, elders, and deacons come to Ruidoso, NM once a year for a special time of refreshing and renewal. Being that I’m new to the church, it was my first time to attend.) I use the word ‘getaway’ because the conference/meeting allowed for many hours of free time. It’s been a great refresher for Starr and I. We found some excellent childcare for the kids back in Lubbock, and being alone for the first time in months we’ve been able to sit and talk for hours, look at the beauty of God’s creation, and spend time getting to know some new friends.

Yesterday we took the 12 mile drive through the Sierra Blanca Mountain range, and I realized how much I am inspired by nature. There were some amazing vistas to behold, and the photos taken do not begin to do the scenery justice. After the hour of looking at the beautiful scenery, I felt as if my soul was full. Gazing on God’s beautiful creation makes me feel close to him. Every time I’ve ever saw something that took my breath away, I would think of Psalm 24:1‑2, Psalm 95:1‑7, and Romans 1:19‑20.

We’ve had a great time, and today we’re headed back to the flatlands of West Texas. Which holds beauty in it’s own special way.