Aches and pains
This afternoon, I went to the specialist to have a word about my new boot, the only way I can get there is by walking for an hour each way. It's over seven hours since I left the health center to return and m legs still ache.
I don't expect the pains to go before the end of next week it's hard to imagine that last year I was doing more than this walk twice a week.
That shows how badly my legs have weakened in the last few months.
Amazon kindle rating.
Amazon Kindle ratings.
I don't take a lot of notice of my Amazon kindle rating, but for once there has a been a slight rise. It isn't much, but as I was heading for the lowest rank in a year, I will take some comfort in the climb.
The singer not the song.
I won't linger on what I think of the likes of Jimmy Swaggert, if you wish to know what I think you can read it on this blog.
I've always said it's more about the singer for me, and I have to admit his ministry has some fine singers in it.
The Chronicles of Mark Johnson
Did it really happen? Did he write the award-winning book - The Chronicles of Mark Johnson?
People kept telling him that once were win an award, you are always an award winner, but he had trouble believing that the last few years; especially as his book sales were not coming anymore.
The book was going to be the start of a new series, but after the award it never sold as he became the victim of jealous writer who he had once known.
He pondered on how people's perceptions of him changed with the news, those who bragged about going on courses at Universities and selling books suddenly became silent, and cut him off. He hadn't changed, but they viewed him in a different light.
Sitting at his desk he thought "That was a different life several years ago in another time." A time when he believed in his ability as a writer.
A light at the end of the tunnel.
I used to think the readers valued my work, it would appear I am correct so long as they don't have to pay me to write. This blog is well-read, but my sales are so low as to be invisible this year.
Fighting your demons.
He sat staring at the blank screen, the only thought going through the writer's mind. It was Neitchze who said: "if you stare into the abyss, the abyss stares back at you."
You are not kidding!
He'd spent days gazing idly at the blank screen, once he'd had dreams of writing about the worlds he's created, now all he could think was "Is it worthwhile?"
The more he thought about what he could be writing, the harder the task became for him to write. He found his mind was locked in a downward spiral to oblivion; the venue he'd fought to avoid now loomed large in his sight.
For years, he'd tried to convince himself that what others had said about his writing was true. Was he truly a good writer, or were they just being kind to stop him from falling apart?
No matter, it didn't help now, even if he was a good writer the drive had gone. Where once dwelled the flames of passion now had turned to an icy cold that no flame could change.
He began to wonder what stage of Dante's seven stages of Hell he'd reached since he convinced himself he was not any good at writing?
He knew where the root of the problem is, he'd chosen not to chase the trends others had done for years. He'd always said: "I'll sink or swim on my work," and he had died a lingering death over the years while those who chased trends had prospered.
He sat thinking, "I've said many times I'm my worst enemy, how true that is."
He sat and smiled remembering how he was an award-winning writer several years ago, not that winning the award meant a lot to him. The biggest impact it had was on some of the people he used to chat to online. They turned away from him after the award, he hadn't changed, but their views of him and his victory turned them sour towards him.
He sat watching his TV and thought; "How my life has changed in such a short space of time."
The likes of John Hagee and Jimmy Swaggart preach that the more you pay to the church, the greater your chance of redemption will be.
This is a total corruption of the Scriptures as the Bible says "It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to buy his way into heaven."
This brings to mind another Biblical story that of the "Widow's mite."
A rich man made a great show of giving his donation while at the back of the church a poor widow hid the fact she could only afford a tiny sum,
The worth of the amount given was more for the poor widow than for the rich man as she had so little to give, and yet gave what she could.
The modern televangelists have forgotten the Scriptures for it is written in the Gospels that Jesus turned the traders out of the Temple when he entered Jerusalem.
You cannot buy redemption - only you can give yourself redemption by being sorry for your sins.
I realize this post may well cause a lot of friction.
I suspect the name of Jimmy Swaggart could cause as much ire as the name of John Hagee.
My views on the high profit business of tele-Evangelism are well known. I appreciate the churches need to be kept in good state, but some of the modern preachers of Evangelism take such a high cut on the takings it is obscene to call them men of God in my opinion.
I don't profess to know much about the ministries of Mr. Swaggart, but from what I have read I would not be a believer in his ministry.
I can accept the first time he was caught with a prostitute he was set up, he was going after people in the church who frequented the ladies of the night. This lead to him being trapped in a web of deceit, and he did confess his sin for that crime and ask for forgiveness from his flock.
However, two years later, he was caught in a lay-by with another lady.
This time he did not ask for forgiveness for his sin, he turned to his flock and said "What I do in my life is none of your business!"
What message is that sending to his flock?
At a time when the church is against same-sex marriage; I think there are greater evils within its bounds that need tending to.
The Lord protects his flock
The horse trod slowly into the village, his rider urging him on despite knowing his pain.
Their ride had been long and the tracks were rough and dry, but they kept going.
Pedro, the horse hobbled and stumbled on the rocky road as the pair moved slowly into the village.
The pair came to the village center where the bar was, the man got down and patted his friend; "We can rest here for a day or two, Pedro. Our journey is long and we're not getting younger, but the work of the Lord never ceases."
Don Miguel Astansia took a look along the road they had traveled and thought Lord, your work is worthwhile, but at times I wish I could rest my bones, the road goes on forever. Don Miguel took down his saddlebag and pulled out his Bible. The man of God had been on the road for so long he forgot the last village he went to, or from which direction he'd come; the Lord was guiding his travels.
He glanced behind him to see Pedro sipping the water from the trough slowly through parched lips, "I'm sorry that you've had to endure this torment," he said as he patted his friend. Pedro looked up from drinking with sad, tired eyes and returned to sating his thirst.
Don Miguel left his friend and walked to the saloon doors, as he entered he paused to cross himself, "Lord, you've sent me a challenge I may not be able to fulfill this time, but I will try."
The saloon's noise died as the man on the Lord walked to the bar, he brushed some of the sand off his lorn brown coat, and said, "Can I have a glass of water, please?"
At the back of the room was the poker table, and the man dealing was the worst of the worst of the gamblers, Dick Sanders. Even the pit bosses stayed away from Sanders, men who tried to take Dick Sanders on, usually took the journey to the cemetery. The presence of Sanders meant nothing but trouble, so when he put the cards down and stood up, the room went deathly quiet.
"Well, what do we have here? I don't recall asking for a Padre in my town!"
The barman out the glass of water on the counter, and reached down for the hidden gun, expecting a gunfight, but Don Miguel saw him and shook his head. The barman stopped what he was doing, but kept his hand near the stock of the gun.
Don Miguel said, "I don't know who you are, or what you've done. I do not think I am any threat to you, so keep your hand off your gun, or you will regret the next thing you do!"
Sanders sneered at his cohorts, "Look at that, if that wasn't a challenge, then my name isn't DIck Sanders and this ain't my town! What're you going to do Padre?"
"I won't do anything unless you do. I am a man of God and wish you no harm, but don't think you pose a problem to my soul if I need to kill you. I made my peace with God and he knows what's in my heart."
Don Miguel realized the situation needed to be handled carefully, so he placed his Bible gently on the bar, leaving his left hand on the cover.
The next thing Sanders did was the biggest mistake of his short life, as he reached for his gun.
Before he'd cleared leather, the Padre reached down to use his swivel holster and fired. The bullet tore into Sanders' hand and he dropped the gun to the floor.
The next few seconds flew past, those at the scene didn't believe what they'd seen as Sanders lay before them clutching his gun hand. The crowd gathered around watching as the blood seeped into the sawdust and formed clogs of red amid the yellow dust.
As the Padre tied his gun down again, the barman asked, "As a man of God, how do you live with carrying a gun, as it goes against your reading?"
Don Miguel smiled as he took the first sip, then he replied, "As I said, I#ve made my peace with the Lord. He'll take care of my spiritual needs and he allows Mr. Colt to allow me to protect my physical needs. I won't kill a man unless it's in the defense of a life." Looking at the writhing figure on the floor, he finished, "That is why you're clutching your hand, not your stomach, sir. If I felt the need to have killed you, I would have done so on a clear conscience."
WW1 ghost story
This is a photo of my grandfather. I didn't know what my grandmother looked like until about four years ago when my mother died and I got possession of some family heirlooms. If you want to read a story based on my grandfather, I wrote "From Elgar to Vaughan Williams, as a commemorative to the people whose lives were changed beyond recognition after #WW1