Updates from January, 2013 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • ivanildotrindade 10:42 pm on January 17, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , farm house, Farmhouse, , hanging things, History, hooks, horse barn, hustler, new things, Norman Rockwell, , old farm house, old houses, old things, World War III   

    Unmovable Hooks 

    I am living temporarily in an old farm house. The house is 150 years old and though everything works pretty well, it is still 150 years old — no amount of make up can hide. At night, because the house is heated by oil, you hear noises coming out of the metal plates on the floor – and there is no pattern, no logic, and no apparent rhythm to the cacophony of sounds.

    The house sits behind a cluster of newer homes, not on the street, but back about one-tenth of a mile, as you follow a gravel road. The GPS lady can never find us. It has an old basement that looks like a dungeon and a red barn that used to house animals. The barn may be as old as the house, I am not sure, but it has the character of a well-built structure that might survive World War III. With enough hard work and artistry, it could be converted into a quaint little house where the occupants might live happily hereafter.

    Down to the east there is a farm, which is part of the property. It is an 8-acre parcel of land, I am told. A beautiful descending field takes you to the other, where a dog is always barking and I am told that people go hunting for deer and walking on Sunday afternoons when the weather is nice. I can’t wait to go there some time in the future, but I will stay away from the dog’s path.

    Though the house is small and we are not even totally moved in yet — our stuff is not coming until 1/25; Though we have no garage and the sink in the bathroom has only one basin, we love the element of simplicity our lives gained since we moved there. We love the quietness and the fact that our neighbors are far enough they will not complain about our two dogs. We love the beautiful mornings when the sun comes up against the fields. And we love not having to pay mortgage, most of all (it will be better once our house in Ohio is sold!).

    But by far the most peculiar thing about this house is none of the things I mentioned. It is rather the unusual number of hooks and hanging gadgets of all sorts and ages I have found around the house. There are original metal hooks painted over multiple times in years past. There are some shiny new metal strips, old nails of all sizes and shapes, hung at different heights over walls, doors, on the sides of cabinets and the showers.

    This interesting phenomenon has made me ask the question: Why do we have so many of these objects in our homes? Obviously, to hang things. We hang pictures, calendars, dish towers, coats, hats, charts, boards, bags, belts, etc. But why do we hang thing? I guess we do it because we love to hang things because the stuff we hang gives us a sense of permanence in a place. They help us build a history, make memories, leave a trace. The proximity to things give us more of a sense of home, I guess.

    The things we hang say a lot about the kind of person we are. Whose picture goes on the wall of the living room? What type of calendar — Norman Rockwell paintings or Hustler magazine’s? Clean or dirty towels? Expensive or cheap china? Diplomas or Birth certificates?

    But we also hang things to try to make our lives easy. If I hang my coat by the door, I don’t have to look for it deep within the house if I have to go somewhere in a hurry. We are too busy to waste even a couple of minutes looking for something that is not obviously in front of us, so we transform what could be a beautiful, plain, empty wall into a utilitarian space always at my service.

    But life is so transitory and things pass away. No amount of hanging will prevent you from having to part with things. And your organizational scheme will some day fail you. We have all experienced the pain associated with a relocation and the feeling of empty walls that had for long been occupied with stuff. The pristine, bright paint in the space where the picture once was serves as a vivid reminder of how new things used to be.

    I can’t help but think that the only secure place to “hang” things is the wall around your heart. If you have hooks there, they will remain with you no matter how far you go. So I encourage you to cultivate your heart with wisdom and love. Wisdom is the application of solid principles to daily living. The Book of Proverbs says that a healthy reverence for God is the beginning of wisdom. I couldn’t agree more. And love is the irresistible force to accept even when logic pushes you the other way. “Love covers a multitude of sins.”

    Wisdom and love will never need to be unhooked from your soul. Happy travels.

    Ivanildo C. Trindade

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    • lionjudah 12:49 pm on January 18, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      Pastor, Ivanildo, what a illustrive musing about hooks in the “Farm Camp!!” You are in Pennsylvania now, one of the 13 original colonies! One connects to yesteryear in an old Pennsylvania farm homestead, which I have affectionatly dubbed, your “Farm Camp!”

      Sylvia and I have spent a number of years of our lives in fasinating old houses. With these, you have rodents, flying things and creeping things. Not always pleasant, but it goes with the teritory. As do dungeon like basements which harbor all of the above mentioned residents.

      At the funeral of Ammon Stoltzfus, one of Sylvia’s many cousins, it was mentioned that he wished to build a house of all doors, because then there would be enough room for everyone to drop their shoes and other items that folks wanted to leave by the doorways. I suppose that goes for hooks as well. When we move into a house I am always grateful for ever waiting hooks for my wraps–that is coats, handbags, etc. In new houses one always hesitates to make a new hole in the wall or your landlord wraps your knucles if you do!

      • ivanildotrindade 3:14 pm on February 2, 2013 Permalink | Reply

        we, thankfully, have great landlords. a house of all doors — i love that concept. and with as few pieces of furniture inside as possible. open spaces fascinate me, even if it is indoors. and considering how much time we spent indoors, we should find the most comfortable and amiable environment possible inside our homes. i have a friend who calls himself “an indoor enthusiast.” i would’t go that far…

  • ivanildotrindade 1:29 pm on January 13, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , anti-adoption forces, anti-adoption law, Moscow, protests in moscow, Russia, russia's new law, Russians,   

    Thousands Hit the Streets to Protest Against Anti-Adoption Law in Russia 

    You might want to read this if you are interested in the story about the ban on Americans adopting Russian children. I hope this movement protesting this self-serving decision will grow, but don’t hold your breath, some politicians traffic in stupid as only pros can.

    Ivanildo C. Trindade

     

     
  • ivanildotrindade 1:24 pm on January 12, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: absent grandparents, book of lamentation, , Grandparent, , Holiday, Home, lament, lamentation, losing grandparents, nostalgia, , ,   

    My Book of Lamentation 

    It’s amazing how much you learn about your surroundings just by sitting at Starbucks and listening to people talk. Now I know this is dangerous business because you can be accused of eavesdropping or worse yet you may hear threads of conversations and build a whole narrative around them. Or you may think you heard something when in reality the people were talking about something also.

    I noticed today an elderly couple who walked into the store. The woman looked frail, she carried a cane and had a distant look in her eyes which I have seen in people who are about to depart. I also noticed how one of the employees was so deferential to that couple and immediately told them to grab a table “before it was gone” — Starbucks was rather crowded this morning. He got their drinks ready and then, as the lady came to get her freshly brewed coffee, I heard him refer to her as “grandma.”

    A few minutes went by and before I knew it the employee took a break, sat at the table with the couple, and began to talk. He told them about a train trip — which was not as comfortable as going by plan but it was good; he even said they had Internet on the train! They talked about the advantages of having or not having a car — this guy rides the bus to and from work, which is how I started talking to him the first time I met him at the store, as he was waiting for a co-worker to get off so he could get a ride home. The last bus had already come and gone. They talked about budgeting and the demands of Holiday spending. They talked about an optimum time for him to go see his mom. Then the couple inquired about his day off — tomorrow, and they made plans to pick him up for lunch. 11:30.

    You know what I mean about being accused of eavesdropping now? Please, believe me when I say that I was sitting across the room from them and the words were floating in the common air space where decoding is free. I heard all of that while quietly removing dead cuticle from my nails in my corner of the store, and I was not taking notes!

    But that scene made me nostalgic. I realized I was witnessing something unique. And I realized I was indirectly living something I was never privileged to do in my life. You see, from the time I was seven, my siblings and I moved to a different state, and from that time on, we were never in the presence of our grandparents on both sides of the family for more than just a few precious minutes. Actually, I don’t even remember my grandparents on my dad’s side of the family, and I had oh so little interaction with the ones on my mom’s side.

    And today I lament that. Yes, lamentation is the right word for it. I don’t use that word lightly. My rules for lamentation are plain and simple: 1. You are only allowed to lament over stuff that has already happened — no “lamenting forward” in my book, for life is too precious to have it ruined by the possibility that something might not turn out the way I want it. 2. You are only allowed to lament over stuff you had no control over. If you see the “check engine” light go on and you still decide to make that 500-mile one way spring break trip and the engine blows up circa 299 miles, don’t come to me lamenting your bad luck. 3. You are only allowed to lament over stuff that cannot be fixed.

    My grandparents are all dead and gone now. I cannot fix that. My wife and I also moved, not to a different state, but to a different Continent, when our children were small. I cannot fix that. But perhaps I can do something about not moving away from my grandchildren — if and when I get my own. I can do something about my children being the last generation in the Trindade line that will have to lament the loss of the grandparents’ presence.

    Starbucks awaits.

    A footnote: I just spoke to “Joseph” (the name I am ascribing to the employee aforementioned) and he told me that indeed they were his grandparents, that they are well into their 80’s and that his grandmother had a devastating stroke last year but she is doing much better today. I told him, “You are honored to have them in your life.” He said, “Thank you for telling me that.”

    Ivanildo C. Trindade

     
    • Bob & Linda 4:05 pm on January 12, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      My Dear Brother in Christ Our Lord,
      You are so “spot on” with this post. I was blessed to be able to be in close proximity to all of my Grandparents. That was good. They were unique in their own rights. They have all passed away but I have no regrets. In my time I believe this was more normal than not. That certainly isn’t the case today. We are all over the place. I heard a man this week with tears in his eyes talk about only seeing his two grand daughters but twice in their life since they live in different states. So sad but so true.
      Keep looking up, “perhaps today!”
      Bob & Linda

      • ivanildotrindade 1:03 pm on January 13, 2013 Permalink | Reply

        thanks for your comment, bob. yes, indeed, u were blessed to have your grandparents in your life. i feel sad for that man who connected so little to his grand daughters. that is even worse than my case, I think.

    • Ted Beaver 9:20 pm on January 12, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      Thank you pastor, this gave me something to think about!

      • ivanildotrindade 1:05 pm on January 13, 2013 Permalink | Reply

        that’s my purpose, ted — help u think, but not too hard. i hope somehow this will help you in your journey. we can all learn from each other’s experiences. thanks for posting a reply!

    • Mary Barr 9:45 pm on January 12, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      I’ll give this a great big “LIKE”… I was SO blessed by grandparents that filled in for absent parents!

    • lionjudah 10:12 pm on January 12, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      I doubt if we can live without lamenting about something. May I comment on this blog: The discussion reminds me of a conversation I had, maybe 40-years ago with a gentlemen. It was, “Are we stealing when we pickup a newspaper and read the news and do not purchase the paper?”

      He said, “The papers print for market profit, information that they received free!” As I think about it, wouldn’t this be the same as eaves dropping?

      Nevertheless, I am always amazed that important men and women meet in restaurants or public meeting places/hotel lobbies and discuss private stuff–they get so involved in conversation that they become oblivious to the persons around them who can easily eaves drop! I confess that I love to oblige whenever I can.

      A short time in my life I slept in a second bed in my parents room. I loved to pretend I was sleeping so I could then listen as they talked. Was that eaves dropping? How often we will be talking in a public place and suddently the person we are speaking with, suddenly cocks his ear to hear another conversation?

      When a high school senior we took the usual trip to the nation’s capitol. (1954) A guide led us in the hugh capitol rotundra and demonstrated how someone in the periforary could hear discussions from the center. In this way he explained a civil war plan from one side was easily understood by the other side.

      One can sometimes learn important news as well as lessons from eaves dropping. Your reflections, Pastor Ivanildo clearly point that out. Well done.

      Lamentation serves us well–it is like holding the “stuff” of life in tention. When I wrote my autobiography: RESOLVED TO FINISH STRONG,” I often wept while I wrote and relived scenes from my life. I lament that had I had a mentor to walk with me I believe could have avoided some pitfalls and have “Strengthened My Grip,” as Chuck Swindoll wrote.

      I was lamenting and musing this to a close friend, Dr. Arthur G. Mcphee, professor of missiology and he gave me this quote BY jAMES bARRIE:

      “THE LIFE OF A MAN IS A DIARY IN WHICH HE MEANS TO WRITE ONE STORY
      AND WRITES ANOTHER: AND HIS HUMBLEST HOUR IS WHEN HE COMPARES
      THE VOLUME AS IT IS WITH WHAT HE VOWED TO MAKE IT.”

      • ivanildotrindade 1:10 pm on January 13, 2013 Permalink | Reply

        thanks, harold. i think i have written here about the ethics of taking discarded newspapers at starbucks, but that is a different situation from what your friend was talking about 40 years ago. i am not even going to try to think of the logic behind his line of thinking. wouldn’t this apply to a whole lot of other things — like library books, for example? and your james barrie quote? sounds to me like the problem could be solved if he simple had a good publicist and a merciless editor — that will take care of writing a book that is longer than your original plan. 🙂

    • lionjudah 4:53 am on January 13, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      Your excellent eaves dropping reflections has jogged my memory of eaves dropping, too! I remember discussing the subject of “Is it stealing if you pick up a newspaper and read it without purchasing the paper? His rationale was this: “NO. He argued that newspapers actually are printing information that costs them nothing plus they are selling it for profit. I love to oblige “eaves dropping” when folks discuss private info in public whenever I can. Great article!
      The lionjudah.

  • ivanildotrindade 6:14 am on January 8, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: blog impact, blog news, blog readers, Ivanildo's blog, starting a blog   

    2012 in review 

    The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

    Here’s an excerpt:

    600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 5,300 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 9 years to get that many views.

    Click here to see the complete report.

     
  • ivanildotrindade 7:03 pm on January 7, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: arranged marriages, child abuse, dowry, forced marriages, India, New Delhi, rape capital, rape in india, , South Asia   

    Femme Fatality — the perilous side of being a woman 

    Too Young to Marry

    Today I lend my voice one more time in defense of young women and children, two of the groups that have suffered more injustices than any other group in the history of the world.

    Young women, children really, continue to be forced into arranged marriages in more traditional parts of the world, especially Sub-saharan Africa and South East Asia. For example, in Niger (Africa), it is estimated that 77% of the women between the ages of 20-24, were married before they turned 18. In Bangladesh it is 65%. UNICEF global figures from 2009 show that 36 per cent of women aged 20–24 were married or in union before they reached 18 and the latest numbers estimates 51 million of girls under 18 are married world-wide. In the UK an estimated 1,000 out of 8,000 forced marriages every year involve a person under the age of 15.

    So in light of these grim realities, I would like to nominate a 15-year-old Saudi girl as my heroine of the week. Why? Well, she simply locked herself in a room and refused to allow her marriage to a 90-year-old man to be consummated. Now the would-be husband is suing the family to try to recoup the roughly $18K he paid as part of a dowry to the family. I say give the girl the money and protect her sisters (if she has any) against their dad’s future transactions involving his daughters.

    Whenever a youngster like this one finds the courage to do something as extraordinary as what she did, we need to celebrate. She was a lot smarter and luckier than the 14-year-old boy who was raped by a Saudi Air Force Sargeant stationed in the U.S. and she is most likely in a better place than the 23-year-old who was raped (and later died in a hospital in Singapore) by 6 men on a bus in New Delhi in India recently. The attack on this woman, a medical student from a middle class in India, was so vicious that I post the story here, but caution you not to read it if you don’t want to be disturbed by the details. On the other hand, if you read it, you will understand the reason for my being so outraged.

    This last story is repugnant to the highest degree. It is this sort of rapacious, grotesque, indignant behavior that reminds us constantly that there is something terribly wrong with our species. And then, to add insult to injury, some bearded guru in India goes around saying that the girl was as guilty as her killers: “She should have called the culprits brothers and begged before them to stop,” he opined.

    Where in the world do these “religious” types get their mores? I am so outraged that if I hear another baseless pronouncement coming out of the mouth of a clergy type, I might just create a website where people will be allowed to slap the face of gurus, reverends of all sorts, imams, and all manners of priests, until they are forced to shut up. You know, one of those where the voice keeps repeating, “Shut up, shut up, shut up, you imbecile…” Okay, I know that will not solve anything but it will at least help me deal with the anger I feel inside toward people who are supposed to be connected to the Almighty and yet fall so deeply into the abyss when speaking about matters so critical to our human dignity. I have no patience for these people anymore.

    I mourn for the family of this 23-year-old girl whose only “crime”  was to be out with a friend on a night of merry-making-moving-going. And they wanted to “teach her a lesson…” I hope the Indian judiciary will put those brutes away for life. Perhaps they will learn THEIR lesson then.

    And may the whole country of India (and the world) learn this lesson: if you don’t protect your most vulnerable, you will eventually become the victim of your own indifference.

    Ivanildo C. Trindade

     

     
    • lionjudah 7:46 am on January 8, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      Dear Brother you could well be dubbed the “Compassionate Pastor of the World.” You probably are moved greater because you travel more than some of us do. Also you know how to rescue abused children from the sex trade in far away countries. May God bless you and your work!

      I would guess there is also a connection because of your “burning bush” experience this past Sunday when you were installed as Lead Pastor at Lititz Grace Church. I’m praying for your local and worldwide ministries.

      Harold, the Lion of Judah

      • ivanildotrindade 3:56 pm on January 8, 2013 Permalink | Reply

        thanks, harold. yes, there is something like that related to traveling. i call it “the burden of seeing,” and sometimes i wish i didn’t have it, but most of the times i am thankful that I have had the opportunity to travel. i have seen the glory and the gory. thanks for your encouraging words.

    • Mary Barr 8:58 pm on January 8, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      So well written. Thank you. I shared this blog on FB.

      • ivanildotrindade 9:04 pm on January 8, 2013 Permalink | Reply

        thank u for commenting, mary. this is so sad. thanks for sharing on FB. we all need to let our voices be heard on this issue.

  • ivanildotrindade 5:51 pm on January 4, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Dorcas, , installation service, memorial service   

    Two Services and A Thought 

    Last Sunday I preached on the brevity of life. Little did I know that just a couple of days later a dear friend of mine, John Weaver, would die suddenly in Wooster, Ohio. John’s funeral and memorial service will be this coming Sunday at Wooster Grace and I will have to miss it because it is my installation service at Grace Church, Lititz.

    This turn of events and the coincidence of services have given me much more than pause. What if it was my service in Wooster and John’s here in Lititz? John was a godly man. Though a builder by trade, he could well be a pastor somewhere based on his knowledge of Scriptures and love for people. I, on the other hand, can’t build even walls made of Lego’s.

    The last couple of days I have only heard (and seen) positive, God-honoring comments about John and his legacy. John touched literally hundreds (maybe thousands) of people with his gentle ways, his firm convictions and exuberant love for God’s Word. I just can’t help but think about what people would be saying and writing about me if it was my service there and his service here… Do you ever think that way? And do you think that you would be remembered as a godly person who left a legacy of love for God and compassion for people. Would people would not only you but your character and integrity also?

    Yes, people miss John’s character and integrity. I also miss his generosity. John gave in so many ways. A thoughtful guy, he never missed an opportunity to bless someone, even if he did it behind the scenes.

    Today I thought of Dorcas, “who was always doing good and helping the poor,” according to Acts 9. When she died suddenly, the poor widows who came to her funeral actually brought with them Dorcas’ evangelism tools — the robes and other clothing she had made and given them while she was alive (Acts 9:39).

    What would people bring to my funeral? Only the funny jokes I told or a memory of a time I actually went out of my way to make sure that they were blessed? Scraps of memory from a reluctant follower or a flood of vivid reminders of an unwaivering faith in a God who delivers?

    What would people bring to your funeral? On Sunday the auditorium at Wooster Grace will be filled with people who loved John and there won’t be a single one who will have any doubts where he stood in his love for God and people. I can’t think of a better memory to bring to a funeral. May it be that way for ours as well.

    And sorry for the morbid tone. Death does make us melancholic, especially on the eve of a great celebration.

    Ivanildo C. Trindade

     
    • lionjudah 8:15 am on January 5, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks, Pastor Trindade, for opening the discussion of death and dying.

      How can one not contemplate the end of his life? Especially when death knocks on the door of his life. The death angel has knocked at my door a handful of times. He has also knocked at my wife’s door several times, too.

      Marketing firms try to remind us to prepare for the eventuallity of our death. My sister-in-law quipes, ” None of us are going to get out of here alive!”

      Then too, those of us who attend funerals find them to be dress rehearsals of out own home going–that is our own funerals.
      And how can one not attend a funeral and listen to the words of remembrance and ask, “I wonder how will people sum up my life?”

      More importantly, How will God sum up our lives–do we have our reservations made?

      Who does not ask, will my death be sudden without farewells all around usually around a bed of infirmity? or will we need to suffer with lingering pain?
      Or who does not ask, will our money last as long as we do?

      There is a multitude of questions that swirl around ones mind as he winds down his pilgrimage.
      I think it is important to address these questions and plan for your end.

      The one thing I am sure of is, “I have done business with God”

      Because of Jesus,
      Pastor Harold

      • ivanildotrindade 11:44 am on January 5, 2013 Permalink | Reply

        Harold, you are doing just fine with the blog thing based on the 10 minute tutorial i gave u. thank you for sharing your thoughts here. your sister is right but she is not right: some of us will make it alive — 1 Thessalonians 4. Take care!

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