Tom with kids in Kuwait

Tom with kids in Kuwait
Tom with kids in Kuwait

Thursday, December 20, 2012


The next generation of digital camouflage has come to western Oklahoma.  We will call it dirtouflage.

Old timers in these parts like to spot a newbie—that’s a newcomer in your old timer vocabulary—and then they ask the same question.

“Do you remember the Great Flood in the Bible?”

You don’t have to be a biblical scholar to know the answer.  All say, “Yes.”  Even the occasional atheist knows about the flood.  They may or may not believe it, but they answer in the affirmative as well.

One of the old timers will then reply, “Yup, we got 2 inches of that.”

Dry is the new normal in western Oklahoma.  It has been 2 consecutive years of very dry.  Wells are going dry.  Farm ponds are dried up.  Lakes and rivers are all low.  Pasture land is scarce.

But into every life a little rain must fall.  Much would be welcomed, but only a little fell yesterday evening.  In fact, so little rain fell that it was just enough to make mud but just not enough to wash the mud off of the local vehicles.

The result was dirtouflage.

Dirtouflage resembles modern digital camouflage but it is much more transient for the dirtouflage will blow away if it doesn’t get washed off first.

It is still dry in western Oklahoma.  Folks understand drought and dust bowl more than they like, but they are still able to laugh when the sky gives up just enough moisture to make droplets of mud.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Advent of the King

Advent of the King

Silent Night
Holy Night
I think I may
I think I might
Wonder if we've gone so wrong
Do we even know what is right?

The days are filled again with ads
Of 3D games and new IPads
Of things that surely we must have
To ease life’s pain and be our salve
So we may just keep going on
The road so wide instead of the narrow path.

But as we live so lukewarm day to day
Will we hear the one who says, prepare the way
Or just go about our lives in dismay
Blinded to the arrival of our hope and stay
With the victory already won
Will the words Jesus is Lord be what we pray?

But one will be taken and another left
Joy and sorrow in such glorious theft
Some shouting for joy and some bereft
Where do you stand in this judgment cleft
Without the Lamb of God, who is his Son
Or washed in his blood with steps both blessed and deft.

And one day we will see him coming on the clouds
The trump will sound much louder than loud
And heaven will celebrate with such renown
That every soul will in joy abound
When Christ the Kings comes and rules as the Son
Love has won the victory and all will astound.

We do so wish that this day would come soon
Even if trouble must first come to the sun and the moon.
For we know what to do in the words of a familiar tune
Let every heart prepare him room
And heaven and nature will sing on and on
And every trouble and tear will be long gone.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Is the end coming quickly or a thousand years away?

Is the end coming quickly or a thousand years away?

The sky is dark
The sky is light
The Day of the Lord comes
Like a thief in the night.

So much to understand
So much to learn
Is prophecy fulfilled in our time
Can these events we discern?

For disturbances in the sky
And events upon the ground
Seem to say the end is near
Where is there refuge to be found?

Will you take me before the trial that is to come upon the earth
While we sing of a Savior and the humble estate of his birth
So we can eternally proclaim his glory
And sing to the Lamb of God of his immeasurable worth?

Or will we endure the days ahead as witnesses to the end
Surely that is not too much to ask from One who called us friend
To see with our own eyes and even suffer now and then
Until the day the world proclaims him Lord and every knee does bend?

But this day I am troubled
Wrapped in the things of worldly struggle
Praying, Lord reveal to me this day
My part in this cosmic puzzle.

And so my Bible reveals words that seem to stand alone
Yet my fingers scrolls without my guide to the same words on my phone
And then the wisdom of the ancients
Is now clearly seen and fully known.

That we are to trust him
Not just in our mind but with our hearts
Even when his direction
Conflicts with what our knowledge does impart.

And we show this trust in earnest
When all we do we do for him
And give him praise and thanksgiving, so that
He sets our sails and rudder on the wisest course time and time again.

For it matters not the hour
Or the weather, day, or time
Such transient things do pass away
But his words are forever mine.

No storm or human calamity
Can snatch away my life
For I have all my trust in him
I trust fully in God and in his Christ.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding;
 in all your ways submit to him,
    and he will make your paths straight.