Thursday, September 1, 2016


     I turn the dial to “wash” and start filling the tub with water, I put in the soap, I put the dark or light clothes in the washer (never mixed), I close the lid and walk away to return later to clean clothes.  How simple is that? 
     In much of Africa they carry their clothes to the nearest source of water.  They then use a very strong bar of soap as they scrub the clothes on a rock with their hands.  After rinsing the clothes in the same water they then lay the clothes on a rock or a bush to dry.  Then after the clothes are dry they begin the long walk home.  This is real and this is today.
     What is the definition of convenience?  Something that makes life easier or more comfortable, especially a labor-saving device.”  How blessed are we to have so many “labor-saving device(s)” in our homes and lives.  Much of the world today is missing these conveniences but they still want their clothes to be as clean as possible and they go to great efforts to wash the dirt away. 
     Our lives are often stained with the darkness of sins that we cannot wash away ourselves whether we use a stream, a rock or a Maytag.
     The chorus of an old song asks the question;
“Are you washed in the blood,
In the soul-cleansing blood of the Lamb?
Are your garments spotless are they white as snow?
Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?”
     Thankfully there is a promise, a convenience, that can help us answer that question: 
Isaiah 1:16-18
Wash and make yourselves clean.  Take your evil deeds out of my sight; stop doing wrong.  Learn to do right; seek justice.  …Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow…”
     Thank you Lord for the “blessing/convenience” of our salvation. 

Until next time…

Mark & Vickie                                                     September 2016

Monday, April 4, 2016


Along the streets of Togo, and many other West African countries, casket makers ply their trade.  They seem to have taken on the role of helping those who die to make a last statement when they pass from this world into the next.  You may see a casket shaped as a fish, a car, a truck, a rocket, and yes even a helicopter or a flip flop.  When a person passes away there is a certain amount of protocol that must be followed based on their position in society.  Sometimes bodies are held for weeks as they order a special fabric to be designed for funeral clothes in honor of the deceased.  Included with the appropriate ceremony is the burial in a very distinctive coffin.  As we saw these helicopter and flip flop coffins we couldn’t help but think that as children of God we will not need an aircraft to take us up to heaven and we sure won’t be wearing flip flops as we walk those streets of gold.

1 Thessalonians 4:16
16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.