A Friend of Jesus
Updated: Dec 31, 2021
Sweating with the Oldies
I've heard Houston referred to as the "armpit of Texas". Whoever said it wasn't too far off. I don't think it was this humid all the time in Kansas or even Minnesota when I lived there. The city was built on swamp land. It is also called the Bayou City as Buffalo Bayou runs through it. The streets are full of pot holes because the ground is unstable. The farther away from Houston you get the better the streets are. The constant rain we've been having has not helped the humidity much. The temperatures aren't bad at about 90 average. Coming from California and 110 - 115 degrees in the desert around Palm Springs, 90 is pretty cool. The addition of 80% humidity makes the 90 degrees oppressive to your entire body. Even Wagsley, who loves being outside, can only take a few minutes before he is headed back to the apartment.
As per my usual daily routine I went out for an evening walk around 9 tonight and while the temperature has dropped to 84 the humidity was just as high as it was earlier. The only relief came from a gentle breeze. I was walking and enjoying the breeze, listening to the highway traffic from the nearby toll road when I had a very strange deja vu moment. I think it was more or less a long forgotten memory that sprang to life.
When I was a child of unknown age we took a short trip to St. Louis to visit my mother's Aunt Marie. We weren't there long, just a couple of days, and aside from being served oatmeal for the first and last time in my life, there were only a couple of other memories that I have of those few days. I vaguely remember my great Aunt. I recall asking if I could sleep on her screened in porch because there was a chaise lounge there and it was cooler than inside the house. She agreed and I felt special. That is the memory. I think the humidity and the breeze tonight were what brought this to mind.
As I tried to remember more about that trip I had a funny recollection of my dad and his famous sightseeing tours. "Look at that kids!" he would say as we passed a landmark. Then he would give us the historical run down of what we had just seen fly past the window. This particular land mark was the St. Louis Arch. We didn't stop, we just drove by and looked out the window at this amazing structure. Daddy had seen it before, so to him it wasn't that interesting.
That was my dad. When we took a trip to New Jersey in 1981 right after I graduated, we went on a similar tour of Boston. We drove by the harbor and he pointed out ships. We drove by the North Church and he told us about Paul Revere. We did actually go to the Bunker Hill Museum where we sat through a video history lesson about the Battle of Bunker Hill. But most of this trip was done with Dad pointing to stuff and telling us what it was.
Imagine Jesus as life's tour guide. Unlike my father, I believe Jesus wants us to experience things, amazing things. Not necessarily man-made landmarks, but our own historical landmarks. I think he brings back memories to remind us of where we were and how far he has brought us from those places. Just like landmarks in this country are a reminder of who we are as a nation, our life's landmarks remind us of who we are as God's children, and all the incredible things He has done for us.
When we go on vacation to experience the culture, or the history of a place sometimes we just want to stay there. I know I did when I went to Scotland, Wales and Ireland. There was just something so enchanting about castles and pubs and such. Our memories are that way. I spent too much time today in my memories. They distracted me from writing yet again. It is amazing how God always redirects me when I get caught up reliving those moments. I Imagine Jesus saying, "Come on, you can't live here. Its great to visit, but I have something much better for you. The journey is this way. There is lots more to see."
I'm enjoying this journey. Every day is new. I love my history even though there are parts of it that were painful, but it is my history. With Jesus as my tour guide it will only get better the farther down this road we travel together. The future awaits and it is so bright I gotta wear shades.
Psalm 25:7 "Do not remember the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways; according to your love remember me, for you, Lord, are good."
Ephesians 2:11-13 "Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called “uncircumcised” by those who call themselves “the circumcision” (which is done in the body by human hands) remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ."
Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."