Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Mini-Blizzard

Awoke this morning to a couple inches of snow already on the ground with another 2-4" underway. Winds are whipping the snow to and fro, with gusts anywhere from 30-50 mph across the High Country.

Here are a couple of pictures... one of the house and one of our four legged friends weathering the snow and wind. The wind chill is around 5 degrees above zero at present!



Saturday, March 2, 2013

Winter's View

The 2013 Winter has been an active one for the High Country! Here are some pictures...







Tuesday, January 3, 2012

A Blustery Day!

Some pictures from the snow and cold on January 3, 2012:

From the front porch...



Water Wheel on Highway 105 in Boone...



Little man, big icicles...

Our first real snow!

Well it has finally come... our first real snow event since moving to Boone.

You can follow the data at

http://home.roadrunner.com/~scmarks/Steve'sWeather.htm

or at

http://www.wunderground.com/weatherstation/WXDailyHistory.asp?ID=KNCVILAS2

I will post some pictures later this afternoon. Enjoy!!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

A Montreat Lesson

I hope you will not tire of my thoughts from our youth trip to Montreat. It was such a wonderful experience and there is much to share from our journey. This week I would like to address the theme of God’s love – an important lesson for young and old alike. As a youth at heart trapped in the body of a 40 something year old, I have a unique perspective. For the youth, God’s love is often overlooked as one of His most special gifts.

Life as a teenager has its ups and downs. It’s a time of great transition from childhood to adulthood. Yet there is much turmoil during this period of change, for both the youth and those who care for them. Youth are often insecure and uncertain about their future. They can be emotionally unstable at times. Every now and then they may make poor choices as they test the waters of responsibility and authority. We have all been teenagers but our memories of these trying times have faded over the years.

Perhaps now more than ever, our youth need affirmation. During our time at Montreat, the adult leaders stressed to the youth that God will always love them. Through the good times and the bad times, through the right decisions and the wrong choices, God’s love for them is a special gift. It is not something that must be earned or purchased. It is something that must simply be accepted. In return, we should all learn to share His gift.

As their congregational guardians, we can demonstrate God’s love for our youth. We can take a moment to reaffirm God’s love to the youth (as well as to one and another) through our positive comments, through a hug or pat on the back, or simply through a smile of encouragement. I am confident that the outcome will be quite favorable for the youth and for you too! It’s a lesson we can all take to heart.

“O give thanks to the God of heaven, for his steadfast love endures forever.” (Psalm 136.26)

Thursday, June 30, 2011

A New Opportunity

Back in January I wrote about the start of something new. This evening I am writing about a new opportunity that I would have never envisioned back in January. It is truly amazing how God can work in one's life. With all the changes we have experienced in our move to the High Country of North Carolina, we have been so very blessed!

Next week I begin my work as the Interim Director of Youth Ministry with First Presbyterian Church in Boone. I am excited about this call to serve the youth within our faith community. In the coming weeks I will blog about this new journey. To learn more about First Presbyterian Church in Boone, please visit their website at www.firstpresboone.org.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Finding Balance in Boone

There is always a balance in life. Without sadness, one does not fully appreciate happiness. Such opposites provide this necessary balance as well as a perspective for comparison.

Lately I have been feeling sad… missing my friends, disappointed that our house has not yet sold, discouraged that we cannot find a home we really like here in Boone, wondering what I should do next and confused as to the direction that I am being led. I think God is just sending me a little reminder that patience is a virtue (which by the way is not necessarily one of my strengths). God provides the appropriate balance at the right time.

I have discovered that taking a few minutes to reflect on my blessings and the grandeur of life helps me to regain my balance. Last night I walked to the top of our neighborhood hill, some 3400 feet above the sea. Off in the distance lightning danced across the sky. There was no thunder as the storm was many miles away. At that altitude, one can see for miles and miles, so I stood quietly just taking it all in.

As I was pondering the meaning of life atop the mountain, captivated by the beauty of my surroundings, I was suddenly startled back into reality by what I can only describe a loud snorting noise. Have you ever felt like someone was breathing down your neck? Well that’s how I felt! I couldn’t see any movement but I sure could hear it and even feel it. In a brief moment of panic, I uttered a few choice words and jumped back away from the side of the mountain top.

I really believe that God was looking down on my little pity party and decided that some levity was in order. It had to be a funny sight - a grown man so startled by the local wildlife. But all I could imagine was a scene from one of the animals gone wild videos. Here I stand watching quietly in awe the majesty of a distant thunderstorm only to be trampled and devoured by a heard of deer.

As you can see, I made it home alive (thanks to my family for the ride back down the hill). And we all had a good laugh at my expense. Last night God provided the necessary opportunity for a little humor and the perspective that I needed to achieve some balance. The serenity of the mountain top is a wonderful place to experience God’s grace. Next time I’ll take a flashlight and maybe even some deer repellent.