Preparations, Questions and Imaginations

Dearest Rachel – There’s something strange about driving back from a workout, and needing to stop and prepare for the next one before going home. It’s not unlike finishing up lunch, complementing the chef, and wondering immediately thereafter where and what one would be having for supper that night – a scenario that I’m muchContinue reading “Preparations, Questions and Imaginations”

The Illusion of Choice

Dearest Rachel – I’m not entirely sure how it is that my mind found itself pondering this concept throughout the course of the last night. Quite possibly, it was due to the video I saw that was reviewing Kurt Vonnegut’s book Slaughterhouse Five. I had read the book (and watched the film, for that matter)Continue reading “The Illusion of Choice”

A Feature, Not a Bug

Dearest Rachel – I was probably dealing with a little bit of overconfidence after having helped the table I had been sitting at win the Christmas trivia contest – which I really should not have had, seeing that I had also been responsible for a run of three wrong answers in a row, that hadContinue reading “A Feature, Not a Bug”

First Contact

Dearest Rachel – After discovering last night (or rather, this morning, I suppose) at 3:30 that I had fallen asleep in the bedroom rocking chair five hours earlier, I made to brush my teeth, get myself undressed, and drop myself into bed where I belonged. It was easier than it had been for some time,Continue reading “First Contact”

This You Cannot Make Me Do

Dearest Rachel – The climax of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol is the moment when Scrooge brushes the snow away from the tombstone of the ‘unknown’ man he had seen lying dead earlier in his travels with the Spirit of Christmas Future. It’s the turning point in which he realizes how worthless his life hasContinue reading “This You Cannot Make Me Do”

A Light from the Heights

Dearest Rachel – After lunch at Caesarea Philippi, we take an hour-long ride into the Golan Heights (still a part of the Galilee region), to a town called Gamla. You would think that a nation barely the size of Rhode Island wouldn’t have such long drives from place to place, and yet, here we are.Continue reading “A Light from the Heights”

The Point of Power

Dearest Rachel – As soon as I wrote it out, it occurred to me that someone might read the title and assume it was something like the Five Point Palm technique from Kill Bill or some such. And while I understand that something along these lines actually exists among certain aboriginal tribes in Australia –Continue reading “The Point of Power”

The Pile of Questions

Dearest Rachel – I’m sure that you would tell me that I’m a too bit free-spending these days, dropping money on frivolities that I neither need nor even want, if I really were to think about it. Granted, part of it could probably be attributed to the combination of prices going up as our portfolioContinue reading “The Pile of Questions”

What Lamech Learned from Great-Grandpappy

Dearest Rachel – This letter, and the one preceding it, have got to seem to be a little strange to you, I’m sure. What are these about? Did something happen in my life that I’m trying to allude to in the most oblique of terms, lest I upset someone with murderous intent on me (orContinue reading “What Lamech Learned from Great-Grandpappy”

The Way of the Wayward Son

You know the rules. Driver picks the music; shotgun shuts his cakehole. Dean Winchester (Jensen Ackles) to his brother Sam (Jared Padalecki), as they begin their adventure, in Supernatural Dearest Rachel – I never got into the series; it was something you would watch as you were doing your chores or whatever it was youContinue reading “The Way of the Wayward Son”

What Can I Do?

Dearest Rachel – So, last night we wrapped up Colossians in our Bible study. Joel had everybody go over what each of us thought was the most individually significant part of the last four lessons. For my part, what struck me was the last section of the third chapter, where Paul talks about various responsibilitiesContinue reading “What Can I Do?”

Long Term Plans

Dearest Rachel – Well, wouldn’t you know it. Just yesterday, I was saying how I need to be telling you a bit more about Yvonne, and last night, she comes out and asks me some hard questions. So, it looks like I need to talk about her at this point. I will say that timeContinue reading “Long Term Plans”

from Rachel: Near to God

[starred for emphasis] Our God is faithful and true. He is not playing games with us or changing his mind. He loves us. Jesus died for us. The Bible speaks to us. The Holy Spirit works in us. And in all these things, God is glorified. With no worrying about right or wrong answers, howContinue reading “from Rachel: Near to God”

They Don’t Break All At Once

Dearest Rachel – So, I’ve just done three loads of laundry and run the dishwasher, all in a single afternoon. Not out of some sense of nostalgia for appliances that will soon be pulled from the house and discarded – odds are, I’ll still need to do a load or two yet between now andContinue reading “They Don’t Break All At Once”

If It’s Northbrook, Forget It

Dearest Rachel – I think I should feel sorry for the good citizens of Northbrook, Illinois. If my experience is any indication, they will never be able to call someone out of the blue and get a willing response. That’s because so many of these stupid robo-call emanate from their town. What’s even crazier isContinue reading “If It’s Northbrook, Forget It”

The ‘All Right’ Lie

Hush… It’s going to be all right Dearest Rachel – It’s a lie that we tell our children. In the most extreme case at present, a Ukranian father has to tell them as he bundles them off with their mother; they are to head for the border and relative safety, while he must stay behindContinue reading “The ‘All Right’ Lie”

Ask You No Questions

Dearest Rachel – I guess I should thank you for showing up last night (this morning?), despite the fact that I can’t seem to stop myself from asking you questions and breaking the spell. So if the dreams you appear in are all too short, I guess that’s on me. Anyway, I should get toContinue reading “Ask You No Questions”

Kidding Aside

Dearest Rachel – Well, that was an odd end to the day. The Sparks club activities, from my limited perspective, went fairly smoothly. We were doing the usual wrap-up; putting away chairs and tables and the like. You remember the drill. Once we would finish, we’d head over to the Cubbies room, where Ms. CContinue reading “Kidding Aside”

R-E-S-P-E-C-T

Dearest Rachel – I suppose this evening, I’m going to ‘find out what it means to me.’ Which I could really stand to do, as I do not understand the concept. I should be giving you a little context, here. Tonight is the annual men’s night at church, when they bring in a speaker toContinue reading “R-E-S-P-E-C-T”

Settling For Less

Dearest Rachel – So, last night, the girls came over – probably for the last time for the next month. Since I had fixed a meal last time (well, sort of; I’d heated up a bunch of stuff that I’d gotten from Costco and whatever), I suggested that once we were assembled at the house,Continue reading “Settling For Less”

Do You Miss Anyone?

Dearest Rachel – One of the reasons you were so concerned about your folks as they gradually moved into their twilight years was that – as far as you could see – their lives gave no indication of the salvation they supposedly had. Sure, they were in church every Sunday, and put their few bucksContinue reading “Do You Miss Anyone?”

Improbable Warmth

Dearest Rachel – I suppose I should be thanking you, yes you showed up in my dreams last night. Twice, in fact. The first time, you were just lying in bed here beside me. Just reaching out to me, asking to be held (with, perhaps, the offer of a little more than that). The oneContinue reading “Improbable Warmth”

An Answer Out Of Season

Dearest Rachel – I saw you last night, but I couldn’t understand you. It was, of course, a dream. I don’t know exactly where we were; I think Daniel and the girls were with us, but the location didn’t look familiar. It was a dream, so it’s probably irrelevant. I just know you were there,Continue reading “An Answer Out Of Season”

How Much Will Be Carved Away?

Dearest Rachel – Occasionally, I will spot something or other left behind by Chompers that I have yet to give away. Kris took a number of things to give to her daughter (I think it was; it’s been well over a week since she was last by) to use with her own dog, but hisContinue reading “How Much Will Be Carved Away?”

The Pointlessness of it All

Dearest Rachel – It hasn’t been the easiest night for sleeping, and I’m not entirely sure why. Maybe it’s because I allowed myself to fall asleep in the chair yet again – I’ve really got to stop doing that – but considering how short a period of time it was that I slept there, itContinue reading “The Pointlessness of it All”

Having the Right

Dearest Rachel – My parents celebrated their sixty-first wedding anniversary last Friday. It’s a difficult number for me to wrap my head around. Of course, they’ve always been married for seven and a half years longer than I’ve been alive, but the longer I live, the larger their number gets, to the point where it’sContinue reading “Having the Right”

A Day to Remember

Dearest Rachel – Twenty-nine years ago today, we were simply hanging out at the hotel, waiting for family and friends to arrive and greeting them as they did. Only one story stands out with me at this point – most of the others, I’m afraid, have faded into obscurity. It was some of your mom’sContinue reading “A Day to Remember”

Giddyup, Four-One-Nine

Dearest Rachel – Among the many channels that we used to entertain ourselves with on YouTube, both before and during the lockdown (and you probably see where this is going, but the rest of the folks reading this might not), there was a fellow by the name of James Veitch who had a particular talentContinue reading “Giddyup, Four-One-Nine”

I Need the Hat and Bullwhip

Dearest Rachel – I want to first point out that I don’t say that out of any need to be ‘cool’ or anything – although those accessories would seem undeniably make me look a lot cooler than I am. It’s also not just because this is turning into an archaeological dig of our relationship. It’sContinue reading “I Need the Hat and Bullwhip”

Out of the Closet

Dearest Rachel – I know you’re looking at that title; and no, it doesn’t mean that. Just take it literally, like you’re supposed to. I stayed home from the office today, because both Jan and Kris were over as part of the (seemingly) never-ending cleaning effort. I left Kris to her own devices – andContinue reading “Out of the Closet”

What Does This Say About Us?

A ·good [righteous] person can look forward to happiness,but ·an evil person can expect nothing [L the hope of an evil person will perish]. Proverbs 10:28, Expanded Bible Dearest Rachel – It wasn’t all that long ago that we were, in fact, looking forward to happiness together. So many of the things that cause most people to struggle inContinue reading “What Does This Say About Us?”

from Rachel: Lacking Nothing

“‘The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.’ Psalm 23:1 (most accurate translation for the Hebrew phrase) “Surviving attempted takeovers by the enemy: Colossians 2:8 ‘See to it that no one takes you captive.’ [We have an] active responsibility to protect ourselves. “Who is the authority in my life?” Is it My Life in theContinue reading “from Rachel: Lacking Nothing”