Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Thanks for everything, Part 2

I think you know from past posts that I am very thankful for my family, friends and church.  I also recognized my clients and my partners in this week’s SpotOnTheLake post.    For those of you that take the time to check this blog, I  wanted to tell you about my Client Services Manager, Janet Jeanes.  All of my clients already know how great she is, but those of you that we haven’t helped buy or sell real estate probably don’t know her.  Janet has been working with me for the last 5 years.  She is the heart and soul of my business.  When I show up at closings, my clients says “Oh, I was hoping Janet would be here.”     After my ego recovers, I realize how fortunate I am to have Janet working with me.  She is a licensed agent and is technically competent with everything real estate related.  Many of the things that she does, I know longer know how to do.  But more important to me is the servant attitude that she exhibits with me, our team and our clients.  It is unbelievable.  It is even more unbelievable knowing that for the past year, Janet has actually had two full time jobs.  As well as taking care of the business, she has been taking care of her husband Alan, who has been diagnosed with

PSP ( Progressive Supranuclear Palsy).  PSP is a rare degenerative neurological disorder that has no cure.  Alan is now confined to a bed and has very low ability to communicate.  Caroline and I went to see them last week, and I was comforted to see Janet respond to Alan when he called out, immediately knowing exactly what he needed.  I am so thankful to know Janet and Alan and to have them a part of my life.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Soul Music

As we approach Thanksgiving, I continue to be amazed at how early we see signs of Christmas.  The Halloween jack-o-lanterns are like bright orange gifts under the artificial Christmas trees at Home Depot.  The broadcast Christmas music is right behind with multiple XM stations to choose from including Traditional, Holiday Pop and Christmas Soul.   

Music has always been a big part of my life.  I sang in the children’s choir at First Presbyterian Church in Columbus.  I participated in musical theater at the Springer Opera House, with my role as Winthrop in The Music Man being my largest role.  It was in that show that I was presented with a trumpet that we only pretended to play during performances.  That was enough for me to want to learn to play it “for real” in the sixth grade.  My wife and I were in  school band together, and I have always loved church music – from the traditional hymns to contemporary worship music. 

In trying to connect my soul to music, I couldn’t find a better way to do it than with Morten Lauridsen’s choral arrangement of O Magnum Mysterium performed by the Kings College Choir in the Cambridge Chapel.  The translated Latin is simple and perfect for the season approaching: 

O great mystery and wondrous sacrament, that animals should see the new-born Lord lying in their Manger!

Blessed is the Virgin whose womb was worthy to bear the Lord Jesus Christ. Alleluia! 

Please don’t be in a hurry.  Find a time when you can be still for six and a half minutes, then click here. 

For more about how the text and visual art inspired Lauridsen to arrange this composition, read more here.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Soul Provider

Our small group at The Vine is about half way through our study of Soul Keeping by John Ortberg.  I can’t say that I am tracking 100% with the way that the book is organized, but the combination of the book and our talented leader, Dan, has allowed for some great discussion.   This is a lot more interesting to me than sitting around watching everyone nod their head “yes” and repeat what they read in the book.  So while I’m not sure I have come to any revelations about my soul yet, Caroline and I did have the opportunity to attend Buckhead Church with my daughter and son-in-law Sunday evening.  This is one of my favorite things to do, and our decision to drive downtown was blessed by an amazing service.  My soul seemed content.  My soul seemed full.

Thursday, November 6, 2014


At the very north end of Lake Hartwell, in Westminster, SC, you can branch off from the main channel into a narrow stream in a kayak or small boat.  It kind of reminds me of the Okefenoke swamp ride at Six Flags where the trees and bushes create a canopy over the water.  After rounding several bends you start to hear the sound of rushing water.  That sounds get louder and louder until you see a large waterfall feeding the stream.  On a hot humid day, I can remember the feeling of climbing over the rocks until I could get to a place where the water would pound on my head and shoulders and completely engulf me.   

My good friend, Richard, has been faithfully following my posts on the soul the last couple of weeks.  He sent me a link to a video with Chris Tomlin talking about one of the songs on his new album “Love Ran Red”, and I found this acoustic version from the recording session. The name of the song is “Waterfall”.   The lyrics are simple, but true.  “Your love is like a waterfall, running wild and free.  Your love is like a waterfall, raining down on me. You’re an ocean to my soul.”  No doubt, Chris borrowed those ideas from an ancient text:  “Deep calls to deep in the roar of your waterfalls; all your waves and breakers have swept over me.”  Psalm 42:7No matter how much the world presses its needs on me, no matter how much I think I know what I need - and am wrong, I can’t escape his presence.  My soul is only at peace with Him.