Ordinary Days

This past week our close nit community of North Florida was rocked to its core by the senseless death of two young men. Out to lunch while on duty, just a regular day on the job. For most people a regular day on the job is never life threatening. When they go anywhere, most people don’t worry about where they sit in the restaurant or how many people are there or think about the exits. For those who wear a uniform though a regular day on the job is always life threatening. The minute they made the decision in life to put on that uniform and accept that badge is the minute the definition of a regular day changed.

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Following the news and Sheriff Bobby Schultz unparalleled press released, everyone’s heart across this area was broken. On Friday most of us wore blue to honor the fallen and show love and support for the loved ones left behind. Most of us have probably sat around trying to figure out what on Earth went wrong and how could this happen in Little Ol’ Trenton?

Governor Matt Bevin has a video going around and I watched it recently. There is actually more than one. Of course he is being questioned about gun control. He corrects the other people in the discussion though and explains to them that it has nothing to do with guns. People have had guns since guns were invented. Twenty years ago people had guns in their vehicles at school and on them at school. It was no big deal. The problem is that the value of life no longer exist. We as a society do not value life. He went on to name some examples such as abortion, school shootings just because someone got turned down for prom, gang violence, video game violence along with music that has violent lyrics. 100 years ago people would have chopped off their arms to save a child’s life or to heal a loved one, they would have given anything to have the resources we have today. Our society as a whole has taken for granted the life, health, healing, vitality, freedom and in general all the wonderful things the last century has brought us.

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I’ve been watching Dr. Quinn recently along with some of the older western stuff, just something to listen to while folding clothes. Those small towns use to have to send off to big cities for a U. S. Marshall or a Judge anytime they had criminal problems. Or they had to advertise for a sheriff and hope someone with integrity and courage stepped up that wouldn’t turn into the town drunk or a tyrant. This is another thing we take for granted. In a matter of minutes I can have a deputy sheriff at my door steps if I need one. I don’t have to wait six months for one. So why has our society gone from begging for law enforcement, to killing them out right for no reason, just because.

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The next afternoon Jesse Clay was scrolling through his Facebook. He’s always showing me recipes or funny memes. So half the time when we are on the couch, or settling down for the night, I can’t look at my phone cause I’m looking at his. So while he is scrolling along, he pasted Taylor Lindsey’s girlfriend’s post. She had written a post for the most part I think just grieving and remembering, wanting to share some of who he was. I couldn’t read it, I got past the second or third line and turned away. I found something else to do. I could not sit there and read a letter/post I pray I will never have to write.

No he doesn’t where green, but he does wear a uniform. He does wear a badge. Bad guys with guns see a badge and a thin blue line. They see someone between them and their goal. I may be half a sleep when he leaves at 5:15 in the morning but I pray every time he walks out that door. I know that he may never come back. Anyone one who has a loved one, whether husband, wife, son, daughter, sister, brother, you know what I am talking about. You get a call that a riot is going down, or that an inmate has escape, or a chopper has been called or the ambulance is on the way to the prison or the Sheriff’s department, your heart drops out of your chest so fast you can’t breath. You feel like Dumbo’s mom just dropped kicked you into the next dimension. The asthma attack you are having isn’t over until you can talk to them. Then you can breath again. For a little while anyway.

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For all those out there who want to, as Sheriff Schultz puts it “demonize” law enforcement, take a good look around. Just because they are wearing normal clothes doesn’t mean anything. The minute they are in a crowd, they are what I call “switched on”. This means that they are very aware of their surroundings and everything going on. They don’t rest or relax. They have people to protect. The families of these willing to serve pay a high price as well. You try finding a vacation spot with not a lot of people, that still has a lot of fun stuff to do.

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There are those who have taken advantage of the badge, dragging it through the mud. There are 1,000 times more honorable men and women out there laying it down just so you can sleep a little better at night. Remember they are human, they have bad days, they have families that don’t always cooperate and sometimes wash red sweaters with their uniforms or put salt in the tea instead of sugar. This could potential make for a bad attitude for the day. That being said, take it into consideration the next time you see some one in a badge, they may not be serving their country the same way as those in our military, but they are serving us, right here at home, day in, day out, over worked, under paid, dealing with the loonies nobody else is willing to.

When all is said and done, after putting up with everything they do during the day, the nasty, the druggy, dirty, awfulness of it all, they come home to us. If we are lucky they make it home before supper time, if we aren’t lucky and they had to work overtime then at least they made it home.

My thoughts and prayers go out to the families of our fallen! My heart breaks for the sorrow you are feeling. The words I have can never heal your hearts. May you find the peace that surpasses all understanding, and may God’s Grace abound in your life!

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Jan 11, 2018

I’m nauseous at the thought of turning 31. And am I starting my third decade or am I in the second year of my third decade. But holy crap this isn’t the third decade is it the end of third decade. I’m actually beginning the 4th.

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Yay I can do math. My husband will be proud of me at 7:39 in the morning. And my brain is racing trying to think about all the things that I need to be doing. The things that I haven’t gotten done. As of 11 days ago, because as we all know my birthday is the 11th January. So I don’t have New Year’s resolutions I have birthday resolutions. Not many people can say that. Not many people can say “I want to go on a diet on my birthday!” and then eat cake that night.

But if I was nauseous at starting my third decade I’m really sick to my stomach thinking beginning my fourth. And I doubt many people actually think of their life in decades. For example this summer Jesse Clay and I will end our first decade. And when I was 25 I thought of myself as two and a half decades. I guess you could say I do math little bit differently than everyone else.

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So really I’m not beginning my third decade I’m actually ending my third and ask with most endings of something there’s usually a beginning of something. So letting that sink in for a moment how do I want this ending to begin.

P.S. I wrote this one on my birthday, and have wrote a few others since then. Happy Beginnings!

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You need a ride. Whether across town, across the parking lot or you’re just going to lunch with your friends. Better yet it’s your car, you’re doing the driving, you’re the one giving the lift, either way the front passenger side floorboard is full of garbage. We’re talking half way up to your knees. From junk mail, soda cans, leftover fast food, you even have a grocery bag full of garbage where you attempted to clean the car out, and then didn’t finish. There’s a few candy wrappers thrown in there, you might even find your good pen down there. If you could think of the one thing you’ve been looking for all week long that you can’t find, it’s probably in that front floorboard.

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But you haven’t had time to clean it out, between the morning rush, the afternoon rush, the weekend hurry, the lunch busy, the Sunday sleep, and in between clocking in and out at work, the front floorboard of your truck just hasn’t been at the top of your to-do list.

Think about all that garbage, like sin, each little piece represents a sin in your life and as it builds up and built up, we leave it there and we don’t do anything about it. When people climb into our space and into the area of our lives, they have to climb over that sin to get to the real us. You wouldn’t think that they have to deal with that but they do. Because you see if we’re the ones driving our life, then they’re the ones that are riding, catching all the junk we throw over there. They’re the ones that are having to shove their feet knee deep into our sin just to have something to do with us, knee deep into our mess because they love us, and if the people that love us are willing to do that, shouldn’t we be willing to deal with our sin.

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First off you got to admit that you got a floorboard full of junk. You need to admit that you got problems. Everyone has problems. For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, Romans 3:23. Everybody has garbage in the truck, unless it’s just been detailed, and even then you got that little paper thing in the driver side covering the mat, and that’s automatically garbage. So it doesn’t matter how clean you think your truck is you’re always going to have garbage.

But every time you get out of your truck, take a little bit of that garbage as you go. Throw it away. Ask for forgiveness, that’s all you have to do and your sins are washed away. They are as far as the East is from the West, from you. Will we have more garbage? Yeah, but that doesn’t mean it has to stay there, that doesn’t mean your loved ones and your friends and your children and your spouse have to trip over it.

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Romans 3:24 goes on to say, we are justified freely by grace through the redemption that is in Jesus Christ. There are some key words there. The first is free or freely if you want to get technical. The other word there is Grace, which if your floorboard looks like mine right now I need a lot of. Then Redemption, we all need to be redeemed, and the only way we can be redeemed is through Jesus Christ.

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Passenger Floorboards