2020 June 25 Sitting Bull

Thursday

Welcome, family and friends to our daily journal,from Liberty Hill, Texas

WeatherBug declares the morning air to be “partly cloudy”. Could be. I won’t know for sure until the fog lifts.Fog has surrounded us. It wraps us in lace curtains that shields us from the sun’s prying eyes and burning glare.

“Faith is like radar that sees through the fog — the reality of things at a distance that the human eye cannot see.”

Corrie Ten Boom (1974). “Tramp for the Lord: The Story that Begins Where The Hiding Place Ends”, p.12, CLC Publications
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THROWBACK THURSDAY

THIS DAY IN HISTORY

On June 25, 1876, Native American forces led by Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull defeat the U.S. Army troops of Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer in the Battle of the Little Bighorn near southern Montana’s Little Bighorn River.
(Read more)

June 2013: I woke in the night with severe back pain. With a history of heart attack, I choose to take the pain seriously and go to the emergency room at the VA in Des Moines, Iowa. Mistake number one. There were ERs much closer AND, if you think you may be having a heart attack, don’t drive anywhere ~ call 911.

At the VA they did an MRI and x-ray. It was not a heart attack, just muscle spasms. I was given muscle relaxers. I was also told that the tests showed a spot on my lung as well as one on my kidney. I was told that a VA doctor would call in the morning about those items.

After nearly two weeks of ME calling THEM, I finally got and appointment. The doctor looked at his computer (never at me) and said, “The spot on your kidney is benign and we’ll just keep an eye on your lung.” This is why I no longer go to the VA when I’m in Iowa.

.Something that most people would never guess about me, most of my life I’ve been an introvert, sometimes bordering on asocial. I wear the persona of a gregarious person, but under that mask, is still the young boy who was in speech therapy for stuttering. On occasion, when stressed, he again controls my tongue.

As a youngster, I would memorize speeches, poems, and parts from plays. When alone, I would practice saying them out loud.

In a college speech class I learned to organize my thoughts for an oral presentation. A good speech is much like music. If music was all one note, played over and over at the same tempo, it would bye only boring noise. I was shown how to change pace, volume, and inflection for emphasis and to keep the audience’s attention.Little did I know how that would be out help to me later on in life, when I began to preach.Watch Ella beat me at a game of Fast Track, and then say I cheat. We also explain the rules and show how to play..

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  • 8 months 25 days since we returned to Texas.
  • 3 months and 11 day being self isolated.

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2020 April 19 Sunday

In Liberty Hill, Texas

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ep! I’ll buy that. It was foggy earlier. By ten o’clock it was cloudy bright. By Early afternoon the sun was all alone in the sky. Good to see you back, buddy.

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Oatmeal with rains and raisin cinnamon bread/toast for breakfast.

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ur worship team has improved the worship-in-isolation every week. This weeks service was seamless, all of the parts of a normal worship were separately recorded then stitched together. Ella and I had reception problems because of our location with less than good signal strength.

Our plan for next Sunday it’s to go to town for better reception. I think we will sit in the empty church parking lot. Maybe even put on our “Sunday go to meetin’ clothes.”

y the time worship and Sunday school (via Zoom) were over, it was lunch time. I had failed to prepare anything. We drove through Dairy Queen for burgers and a shake. Then we sat at the picnic table, located outside the worship center at Cross Tracks Church, and ate..

hat’s all for today. It is our Sabbath.

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  • God bless and g’day.
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  • ©2020 Thomas E. Williams

Day 201, in Texas.Day 35 being self isolated.

2020 April 06 Monday in Liberty Hill, Texas

Welcome to our daily journal. Share it with a friend.www.TomAndEllaJournal.comooking through the fog toward the East at the rising sun. It’s right there. You see it, right? No. No. A little to the left. As you missed it.he view to the South is just as foggy. The far hills have ducked of sight. Don’t take it personal. They are very shy hills. Sometimes they even disappear behind clouds of cedar pollen. No kidding. When the cedar and juniper are pollinating, it drifts like smoke through the valleys.he Western view is probably the foggiest direction at the moment. A couple of yard lights are trying in vain to fight their way through the mists. Just try to hang on until sunrise. Oh … right. No sunrise.

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e broke with tradition and took a morning walk. And it did not involve checking the mail box.love the old time look of the rough cut siding. This building isn’t quite as old as it appears. It was built in the late 1990s with the idea of making it appear like real old western frontier general store.ots of yellow weeds and pink flowers, I think they may be primroses.small patch of blue bonnets and more yellow weeds. Texans go bonkers over blue bonnets. They run out into a large patch of flowers, plunk their baby down for a photo op. Folks, there are rattlesnakes out and about. THINK.into beans and rice with smoked sausage and carrots for lunch.The dishwasher is broke. No, we have no machine that’s broken. It’s me. I’m broker.Found a mask that’ll cover my beard.And it doubles as a cap. How great it’s that?My HUM device notified me that the truck’s battery was in the yellow zone. So we went for a drive to charge it. We were still in isolation. It just was a rolling isolation.God bless and g’nite.

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http://armchairsermons.com

  • ©2020 Thomas E. Williams

Day 188 in Texas

Day 25 of us being self isolated.

2020 April 03 Friday

2020 April 03 Friday in Liberty Hill Texas

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.esterday, just before the rain, I put the awning out.The hope was that we could leave the door open, without rain coming in. It worked~mostly.Today I was looking at the awning and thinking. “It just doesn’t look right.” Finally I realized why the awning looked wrong. I hadn’t installed the rafters / braces. These rafters keep the awning fabric wretched and tight. That means less likely to tree tear.ow many different ways of saying gray can there be? “Without interest or character; dull and nondescript.” (Thank you, Google.”

Synonyms for gray/grey

  • Dove
  • ash
  • ashen
  • battleship
  • cinereal
  • clouded
  • dingy
  • drab
  • dusky
  • dusty
  • granite
  • heather
  • iron
  • lead
  • leaden
  • livid
  • mousy
  • neutral
  • oyster
  • pearly
  • peppery
  • powder
  • sere
  • shaded
  • silvered
  • silvery
  • slate
  • smoky
  • somber
  • stone

(Thank you thesaurus.com)I had to look up the meaning of cinereal.
“Cinereal is an old English word that comes from the Latin ‘cinis,’ which means and relates to ashes, specifically the dead cold heavy black ashes left after a fire.here are hills hidden by the cinereal foggy mist that permeates the air this morning.was up hours before Ella, I went to the living room and closed the door to the upper level, so as to not disturb her. Sometime later, I heard her in the bathroom. I asked if she was staying up or going back to bed. “Bed,” was her groggy reply.s time progressed, my stomach began to growl like a hungry lion. So, in fear, I prepared some oatmeal.Nobody wants a lion in their tummy. Though they may want a tiger in their tank.oments before ten o’clock, my bride appeared and was ready for breakfast. The oatmeal was easily reheated in the microwave.

This is day 22 of us being self isolated. These days we seldom dip a toe into the news-stream. We are already doing all of which we are able be remain safe. Hearing all the bad news of the day its not not going to change that.

I do not accept ANYTHING I read on social media as fact. I writes family and friends would stop sending misinformation and links to potentially harmful websites.

Hearing that one million now are infected needs to be balanced with the news that six billion nine hundred and ninety nine million are not not infected. (Numbers are not to be taken as exact, they are estimates) I did hear an assumed expert saying that we are still closer to the beginning off this pandemic than we are to even the middle. I suspect, and fear, he may be right. But right or wrong, there’s still not a dang blame thing that Ella and I can do, beyond what we are doing, praying and taking all precautions that we can.

hicken tortilla soup. It looked prettier before I stirred the cheese into it. I used V8 juice to extend. It had corn, black beans, red and green peppers, spices, and, of course, noodle sized bits of a couple flour tortillas.

God bless and g’nite.

  • If you enjoy our journal: comment, like, and follow. Also see our Facebook page and our new Instagram page. Just search for “Tom and Ella Journal.”

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My NEW sermons blog Armchair Sermons. Sermons posted most Sundays 10 AM central time.

http://armchairsermons.com

  • ©2020 Thomas E. Williams

Day 185 in Texas
This is day 22 of being self isolated, not wanting to be around folks with the corona-virus.

2020 March 24 Tuesday

2020 March 24 Tuesday in Liberty Hill Texas Welcome to our daily journal! Send Mail to: TomAndEllaJournal@gmail.com

Day eleven of being self isolated because of the corona-virus.

id you notice something different? No fog! That’s right,”there’s magic in my eyes I can see for miles and miles and miles and miles and miles.” Oh yeah.” (song by The Who – 1967)

e opened the windows overnight and the door, once we were up. We will keep them open as long as it doesn’t become too warm. And, if is truly going to reach eighty three degrees, it might be before noon. Then we’ll close up and start the air conditioner.

ccasionally, the clouds would thin enough that the sun would appear as a bright disc, looking for all the world, like the moon. And soon, too soon, was hidden once again. But wait! The forecast, as yet unproven as I write this morning. Is for a sunny afternoon. Now I pray that the next forecast issued for COVID-19, will be equally cheering.

ust before noon the sun shook off the coat of clouds and began to pour out a week’s worth of sunshine. Though the return of that long lost friend was welcomed back, and though he warms our souls, we shut the door and drew the shades to half mast. His rays through the windows soon had the indoor thermometer creeping up on eighty. Outdoors it reached a record breaking (for this date) eighty six degrees.

Today’s Instapot lunch was lentils, kielbasa, carrots, celery, chicken stock, and (just for the heck of it) a little bit of barley. For dessert was a banapple no bake pie. Instant banana pudding and a can of apple pie filling in a shortbread pie crust.

Remembering My Youth

Once there was a boy-child who played and stayed in the brilliant summer sun ’till his hair was near white and skin near chestnut.

Trees, hills, and fences too, were made for climbing. And climb he did. From top branches smaller than a man’s thumb he hug by his hands, knees, and toes.

As he was swayed by that ever restless breeze of summer, his mind’s eye looked down to the pirate ship’s deck far below, where Captain Hook shook his one good fist at the fair-haired boy, dressed in green, far up in the crow’s nest.

Next, as he squatted in his loin-cloth, high in the vine covered tree, a gentle African wind carried with it, a strange aroma among the normal scents of the jungle, the aroma of a dangerous rogue elephant. as it came crashing through the underbrush.

Now the international man of danger lay flat against the skyscraper roof, binoculars to his eyes and studied the movement of the band of spies that were just coming ashore from the foreign submarine.

All too soon, mother called him down from his perch. Time for lunch and a nap. He had no need of a nap. He had been dreaming all morning.

Water for awhile.

Survival food for awhile.

Trash bags, TP, disinfectant wipes, and towels for awhile. Oh yes, buddy burners and a few yards of rope.

Tools for simple repair and construction.

His and hers duffle-bags with everything that NEMA, National Emergency Management Association recommends, was well as FEMA, Federal Emergency Management Agency. And other supplies recommended by various survivalist and preppers. I don’t think of Ella and myself as “peppers”, as a good scout I do believe in, “Be Prepared.” Oh yes, the truck and topper for temporary shelter.

God bless and g’nite.

  • If you enjoy our journal: comment, like, and follow. Also see our Facebook page and our new Instagram page. Just search for “Tom and Ella Journal.”

  • Visit my devotions blog. New devotions every day (nearly)

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http://armchairsermons.com

  • All content (except quotations) ©2020 Thomas E. Williams

Day 175 in TexasProgressive 43.17Progressive 47.09

2020 March 23 Monday

2020 March 23 Monday in Liberty Hill TexasWelcome to our daily journal! Send Mail to: TomAndEllaJournal@gmail.comDay ten of being self isolated because of the corona-virus..Thoughts on Fog

Fog there was and fog there is. I pray it is fog, else the world beyond is disappearing. Hunkered down, miles from town, how am I to know that underneath the sodden, dripping, grey mass that the water tower, the churches, the gas stations, and stores are still there?

Thoughts on COVID-19

Facemasks, goggles, and gloves, hand sanitizers, disinfectants, and wipes; is this our new normal? Will ever we ride again buses, taxis, planes, and trains without fear of touching what others touched, of breathing in what others had breathed out?

Will people once again gather shoulder to shoulder, clasping hands, and giving hugs. Will worshippers pray, praise, and. sing, their voices muted by respirators?

Will those who cough or sneeze be set outside civilization, their faces covered, and made to yell, “Unclean!”?

airly early this mourning, I crawled into the topper and retrieved those two black storage boxes from the upper right corner. They are filled with freeze dried food.However, there was no rhyme nor reason to how they were laid inn the boxes. I brought them into the RV and sorted them. All of the same kind, e.g. Creamy Potato Soup, were stored together in grocery sacks. Using a Sharpe Pen, I labeled each sack with the contents. I also separated the entrees from the breakfast items, each to their own box.Both Ella and I had prescriptions read for pick up. So, I unsequestered myself and went to Cedar Park. Wal-Mart was beginning to restock, though paper products, flour, and eggs were nowhere to be found. Now we slide bank into isolation until possibly the thirty first. That is when Ella’s follow-up outs scheduled with her urologist… which may be cancelled.ust before five o’clock Ella and I went for our daily walk. We stopped at the.mail box. The letter Ella plac . ed in the box on Saturday was gone, but no new mail was present.8

God bless and g’nite.

  • If you enjoy our journal: comment, like, and follow. Also see our Facebook page and our new Instagram page. Just search for “Tom and Ella Journal.”

  • Visit my devotions blog. New devotions every day (nearly)

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http://armchairsermons.com

  • All content (except quotations) ©2020 Thomas E. Williams

Day 176 in Texas

2020 March 22 Sunday

2020 March 22 Sunday in Liberty Hill Texas Welcome to our daily journal! Send Mail to: TomAndEllaJournal@gmail.comDay nine of being self isolated because of the corona-virus.The fog comes. on little cat feet. It sits looking. over harbor and city. on silent haunches. and then moves on.” – Carl Sandburg

Dark was the night and gray the morning.

Fog clings, a coat so thick amidst the chill.

Smothered in silence, I await the day.

his Sunday morning we were listening to hymns on YouTube while waiting for church service to begin on Cross Tracks Church’s Facebook page. Pastor John Saint’s sermon on Facebook is here.Tom Williams’s message for today, “Praising God In Times of Trouble.”unch for today: chicken and noodles over mashed potatoes, with green beans. I made the noodles with powdered eggs. And I made them the way I like them, thick, wide,and chewy. Some might call them dumplings. But they would be wrong, dumplings are much lighter and airier.apioca pudding for a nice, warm, afternoon snack. It really was just going to be vanilla pudding. I mistakenly added an extra cup of milk. So I added the tapioca to thicken that extra cup. It was good warm. Does anyone else really like the “skin” that forms on the surface of real, cooked pudding? It’s my favorite part. Because I made too much, there was an extra bowl.ur favorite board game is Fast Track. We have introduced it to many other people and they’ve become as addicted as we are. I tell people that it is easy to learn. It’s just hard to win.lla and I went for what had become a daily walk. Truly, we don’t walk far enough to count as exercise, but we at least get out and “git ta stink blowed off.”nce again sunset is indistinguishable from sunrise, like a library filled with only one book, every shelf the same, every day bound in the same cover. I’ve read this day before, too many times.

God bless and g’nite.

  • If you enjoy our journal: comment, like, and follow. Also see our Facebook page and our new Instagram page. Just search for “Tom and Ella Journal.”

  • Visit my devotions blog. New devotions every day (nearly)

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http://armchairsermons.com

  • All content (except quotations) ©2020 Thomas E. Williams

Day 175 in Texas

2020 March 15 Sunday

2020 March 15 Sunday in Liberty Hill Texas

Welcome to our daily journal! Send Mail to: TomAndEllaJournal@gmail.com

Day two of being self isolated because of the corona-virus.

t appears that the good news in the forecast is that our present temperature of fifty seven is as cool as it going to be today. The less exciting news is that the day’s high is only going to be seven degrees warmer than our present temperature.

he Weatherbug declares that it is cloudy. I have no reason to doubt that it is indeed cloudy . . . somewhere above the fog. It doesn’t appear to be very dense right here. I hope that we don’t discover, on our drive to Cross Tracks Church, that visibility is limited in some of the low spots in the road.

ross Tracks Church, Pastor John Saint’s sermon, “Spring Cleaning.” It was based on the Gospel of John chapter 2:13-22, where Jesus cleansed the temple.

More, Life in the

Time of COV19

ttendance was W A Y down at our first worship service today. You will also notice that people are keeping their distances. There were five things, that we normally do, that today we did not do.

  1. Great each other with a handshake, hug, and word of greeting.
  2. Pass the offering plates. Instead they were left on a table by the doors.
  3. Pass the attendance books. I’m assuming that someone just did a head count.
  4. We had no adult Sunday school. I don’t know about the children.
  5. We had no breakfast bar. There were donuts that were served by one person with tongs. Usually there are tacos, sausage & egg sandwiches, and a variety of self serve pastries.

More COV19 related.

told you yesterday that we decided that we would not attend Over The Hill Gang* until there was some resolution to this viral pandemic. I received an email stating that the OTHG will not be meeting until at least April.

had yesterday said that going to Grandies** and choir practice were still unknowns. Grandies is no longer an unknown. I received an email from them also stating that they are suspending meetings until at least April. No word about choir practice.

f you will recall, Friday we attended the 50+ soup and salad lunch. Since attendance was far less than expected, they were giving leftover soup and salad to take home. We decided to forego the salad but did bring home soup. Today, for lunch, I dumped that soup into the Instapot, added some water, and some dumplings, then set the machine on the “soup” setting and let it go. I could have heated it faster in the microwave, but that would not have cooked the dumplings.

s I discovered, pressure cooking dumplings is not the best method. It made them very dense balls of cooked dough. There still tasted good but had to be cut into smaller pieces.

ix thirty and it is still fairly light. However it is also still overcast and foggy.

God bless and g’nite.

IF YOU ENJOY OUR JOURNAL, LIKE, COMMENT, AND/OR FOLLOW. Also see our Facebook page.

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http://armchairsermons.com

  • All content (except quotations) ©2020 Thomas E. Williams

Day 167 in Texas

  • *The Over The Hill Gang, (3307 RR 1869) Any area senior 50 years or older is invited to join for fellowship and a meal every Thursday at 11:30 a.m. The first meal is free; afterwards, individuals are asked to donate $6 for their meal.
  • **Grandies welcomes those 50+ every week with friendship, games and a ministry to connect to others. As a special part of their ministry, Grandies sign and send greeting cards with inspirational messages to those serving in the military, the sick or homebound and church members celebrating happy milestones like birthdays and graduation. Since this ministry started, more than 3,300 cards have been sent!

In the summer, Grandies also work to make available snack packs through Operation Liberty Hill for children who may not otherwise have enough food without a school in session. Additionally, they provide meals at Vacation Bible School. and host bake sales twice a year to raise funds for their important works.

Wednesdays, 9 a.m.
Currently meets at the OTHG building (3307 RR 1869)

2020 February 17 Monday

2020 February 17 Monday -Presidents Day- in Liberty Hill, Texas http://TomAndEllaJournal.com

ou may have noticed that the “WordPress” has been dropped from the URL. Yep, the domain name is officially ours.

nterestingly, it both shows the sleep starting at eleven twenty-seven and the thirty-seven minutes puff awake time. I don’t think it should show it both ways. Either I was asleep or I was not. It seems silly to add it and them subtract it. Right?

arm, cloudy, and dense fog alert. I concur. The view from my deck looked cloudy and foggy. At the same time it felt remarkably warm for mid February.

ince it is Presidents Day, all of the senior centers are closed. We had nowhere to go and all day to get there. That gave Ella the opportunity to beat me two out of three games of Fast Track.

The sky at noon when it was seventy four degrees outside and inside. That is why there is a fan in the doorway. Before long, the door will be shut and the air conditioning started. For those of you in locations with snow, freezing rain and below zero temperatures, I’m sorry. Consider this as a reason to join us in Texas.

nce it reached eight degrees outside and eighty five inside, it was definitely time for the air conditioning.

IN THE BEGINNING part 4

If you haven’t read “The Beginning Parts 1, 2, 3” you should read it first for a fuller understanding.(go to post “2020 February 14 Thursday”)

Originally published November 2011

Our dream had been to retire to amobile lifestyle’. I envisioned it being something like, waking in the morning and flipping a coin to decide if we were to travel left or right, forward or back. We were still several years from being able to retire but we were beginning to live a version of the dream.

Our friends and family were concerned for us to the point that when we said we were going to live in the RoadRanger during the winter they asked, “Won’t you be cold?” To which we replied, “I don’t know, ask us again in the spring.” Well, thanks to following the advice of other full-timers, we made it through that first winter with only minor difficulties. And, “No” we were not cold. We learned to use foil-backed foam insulation to skirt the trailer. We also learned to use 40 watt ‘trouble lights’ to provide just a little heat behind the RV refrigerator. (Unlike household refrigerators which use a compressor, RV refrigerators rely on evaporation and must have heat to work.) We learned to use plastic film to cover the windows. We learned how to depend on the fresh water tank for water and how to keep the water lines from freezing. But most of all we learned how beautiful God’s world is in the winter.
We watched the leaves on the trees around the lake turn from green to bright fall colors and then to abandon the trees for the winter. We watched the sunlight sparkle so brightly on the lake that it almost hurt your eyes. We watched the geese and ducks invade and then leave as they passed through to warmer areas. Gold finches changed to their drab green fall color. Rabbits, raccoons, deer and hawks became the winter time entertainment replacing the song birds of summer. We discovered that the winter sun shining on snow and ice mimicked the sunlight sparkle of the summer lake. We discovered how little we needed for us to be happy.

(to be continued)

he sun, at its setting, made me forget the lackluster, fog and cloud shrouded beginning of the day.

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  • Day 139 in our Texas home
  • *The Over The Hill Gang, (3307 RR 1869) Any area senior 50 years or older is invited to join for fellowship and a meal every Thursday at 11:30 a.m. The first meal is free; afterwards, individuals are asked to donate $6 for their meal.
  • **Grandies welcomes those 50+ every week with friendship, games and a ministry to connect to others. As a special part of their ministry, Grandies sign and send greeting cards with inspirational messages to those serving in the military, the sick or homebound and church members celebrating happy milestones like birthdays and graduation. Since this ministry started, more than 3,300 cards have been sent!

In the summer, Grandies also work to make available snack packs through Operation Liberty Hill for children who may not otherwise have enough food without a school in session. Additionally, they provide meals at Vacation Bible School. and host bake sales twice a year to raise funds for their important works.

Wednesdays, 9 a.m.
Currently meets at the OTHG building (3307 RR 1869)

2020 January 31 Friday

2020 January 31 Friday in Liberty Hill, Texas

ore haze and mote overcast skies until around two thirty I the afternoon when the sun came out to play

Grey skies are gonna clear up. Put on a happy face.

For lunch I made chicken fried chicken, fry bread. Corn, diced tomatoes, and kiwi.

An hour or so before sunset.

Sunset.

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God bless and g’nite

  • Tom and Ella’s Daily Journal of Our Lives

http://TomAndEllaJournal.WordPress.com

  • Visit my devotions blog new devotions every day (nearly)

  • My NEW sermons blog Armchair Sermons. Sermons posted most Sundays 10 AM central time.

http://armchairsermons.com

  • All content (except quotations) ©2020 Thomas E. Williams
  • Day 123 in our Texas home
  • *The Over The Hill Gang, (3307 RR 1869) Any area senior 50 years or older is invited to join for fellowship and a meal every Thursday at 11:30 a.m. The first meal is free; afterwards, individuals are asked to donate $6 for their meal.
  • **Grandies welcomes those 50+ every week with friendship, games and a ministry to connect to others. As a special part of their ministry, Grandies sign and send greeting cards with inspirational messages to those serving in the military, the sick or homebound and church members celebrating happy milestones like birthdays and graduation. Since this ministry started, more than 3,300 cards have been sent!

In the summer, Grandies also work to make available snack packs through Operation Liberty Hill for children who may not otherwise have enough food without a school in session. Additionally, they provide meals at Vacation Bible School. and host bake sales twice a year to raise funds for their important works.

Wednesdays, 9 a.m.
Currently meets at the OTHG building (3307 RR 1869)