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3 years, 2 months ago 22

 

His name was Samson, but I affectionately called him “Big Brown Dog.”  Even from the time he was a puppy he was a big, awkward, lumbering, ball of  brown fur.  They say that a dog is man’s best friend, and in some ways that is true.   I never remember him being ashamed of me, mad at me, or unwilling to come over and let me love on him.  In fact, every time I visited Catherine’s and Clint’s house, which is often, he would rush over and lay his head in my lap as if to say, your late, get to work rubbing my ears!  Big Brown Dog was a faithful friend, never wavering in his devotion to his family.  When they adopted a small hyper-active Boston Bull Terrier named Charlie, Samson took it in stride, and shared his home with the the new comer, even though one of her favorite games was pestering him in every conceivable manner, he stayed the calm loving old boy he had always been!  He knew no other way.

 

You can know everything there is to know about someone when you look into their eyes, and if they look back,  you can sense their soul.  Big Brown Dog was and open book to read and you knew he loved you, when you looked into those big brown eyes!  Samson would love to get up on the couch and lay his head in your lap, and would never move as long as you would hold him there.  If he got to warm he would get up and move to the floor, but never go very far from your feet.

 

Several years ago, Samson ran off and got lost, he was gone for days and we frantically searched for him, it seemed he was gone and we were all torn up, but then he reappeared, thinner, and oh so very glad to see his family!

 

After that he rarely went very far from home, I think in fear he would be lost again.  Yesterday he took his last trip.  At almost 11 he succumbed to what we believe was a heart attack in the kitchen floor next to his beloved family, as they had lunch.  I joined them in the kitchen and after consoling my grandchildren, and Catherine, and Clint I ran into town to run errands.  As I drove alone my mind was filled with all those wonderful moments loving on my Big Brown Dog.  He wasn’t really my dog, of course he belonged to the Catherine, Clint, Cassidy and Cade,  but then again he was my dog too, in fact anyone’s he allowed into his big warm heart, was truly his friend.

 

I’ll miss you my friend,  it was great to have you to love, and to be loved by you, I’ll see you before too long, on the other side.   Be at peace Samson, and don’t worry, I’ll watch over your family until we meet again.

 

Blessings,

 

the pilgrim

 

I allowed myself to really let loose and cry after writing this dedication to Big Brown Dog this morning, it feels good to let it go……  It would be an honor and a privilege to be remembered as warmly as he will.

3 years, 2 months ago 7

 

Some years ago the Firestone Tire Company produced ads that quoted the idiom; “Where the Rubber Meets the Road…..”  It is a much used phrase, one of my favorites.  Now to matters of faith.  A dear friend of mine, someone you would know, a public figure in the world of photography, once said to me, I wish I could do what you do, I find it hard to openly share my faith!  My answer to him was that God uses each of us in different ways to accomplish the same goal, to express to the world how much He loves us!  Some do it by example, some by words, but not everyone is comfortable standing on a soap box, and announcing their faith.   I don’t think God prefers one over the other, I think He prefers that we Want to share His love.  He will guide us through the Holy Spirit on how to do, what He asks us to do!

 

This brings us to another key question;   “How do we position ourselves in our relationship with Him to be able to serve Him better?”  For me the answer to that came many years ago when I read a wonderful little book called, “Prison to Praise”  by Merlin Carothers.  The foundational principle in this book is to praise Him in all things.  You have great success, Praise Him, you have great defeats, Praise Him, you are in deep sorrow, Praise Him, you have doubts and fears, Prasie Him.  On first thought it makes absolutely no sense at all.  However, there is a wonderful, foundational principle in this act!!! God’s deepest desire is that we trust Him, that we truly know deep in our hearts that He is in control, and will never do anything that is not in our best interest!

 

Thus the scripture;   “For all things work for the good of those who love the Lord.”

 

If God is in all circumstances, and will ultimately bring what is is best for us out of them,  praising Him is an act of acknowledgment that we trust Him. Nothing pleases Him more than to hear us say, “I trust you Father.”   I often pray prayers that go something like this;   “Father I don’t understand this circumstance I’m in,  and I don’t like it very much,   but I know you will use it for my good, and it will bring glory to you, so I praise you Father for your goodness, faithfulness, and your love.”

 

As Christians this is where, “the rubber meets the road”!  Do we trust Him with our lives, our daily walk, our ups, and our downs?  Want to gain some “traction” in your walk with Him?  Tell Him you trust Him, and praise Him in all circumstances.  Then,  buckle your seat belt, the results will amaze you!!!

 

Blessings,

 

the pilgrim

3 years, 2 months ago 2

For the past two years Old Car City has been the first of our workshops to fill up!  We are only three week from the start of this years event.  We have a small number of folks that will be joining us and we would love for you to join us too!  I’ve got two good reasons, the price has been dropped from $799. to $599. and I think even if we get a few more the group will be small and that is always great for the attendees.  The dates are Wednesday Evening the 12th to Sunday morning the 16th of March.  We will have three days of shooting in Old Car City and classroom work with a special emphasis on processing images of Americana subject matter like Old Car City!!  If you are into color, design, and old rusting cars, and trucks, this is heaven!  I’ve posted some additional favorite images of mine, all of which are right there waiting of us….. and thousand more shots to boot!

 

 

So if you think you might like to join us, please shoot me an email  (billfortney@earthlink.net )  or call (606) 528-6119.  We still have rooms at the Hilton Garden Inn for $99. per night!   It’s not to late to be at the first His Light Workshop of the season!!!  Jim Begley, Nick Coury, and I will look forward to fellowshipping with those that can join us!

 

Blessings,

 

the pilgrim

3 years, 2 months ago 10

During the Super Bowl there was a ridiculously narcissistic song that backed up the Beats Headphones commercial by Aloe Blacc.  Even though it had a catchy beat, it was dead wrong!  It told us everything we need to know about  the thinking of the world, self glorification, self worship, self reliance!  When will we learn, God does not wants us to conquer our world, but for our hearts to be conquered by Him  I took the song and changed the lyrics, oh how I wish a Christian artist would re-record this song to be our anthem!

 

 

PRECHORUS                                                                        New Version
Stand up now and face the sun                                                Stand up now and face the Son
Won’t hide my tail or turn and run                                         Don’t leave in fear and run
It’s time to do what must be done                                          It’s time  to do what you must do
And be a king when kingdom comes                                      and belong to the King when the kingdom comes

CHORUS                                                                                  CHORUS
Well, you can tell everybody                                                     Well, you can tell everybody
Yeah you can tell everybody                                                     Yeah you can tell everybody
Go ahead and tell everybody                                                    Go ahead and tell everybody
I’m the man, I’m the man, I’m the man                                  He’s the Man, He’s the Man, He’s the Man
Well, you can tell everybody                                                     Well, you can tell everybody
Yeah you can tell everybody                                                     Yeah you can tell everybody
Go ahead and tell everybody                                                    Go ahead and tell everybody
I’m the man, I’m the man, I’m the man                                  He’s the Man, He’s the Man, He’s the Man
Yes I am (x3)                                                                           Yes He is! (x3)
I’m the man (x3)                                                                     He’s  the Man (x3)

 

VERSE 2
I got all the answers to your questions                                 He’s got all the answers to your questions
I’ll be the teacher you can be the lesson                                He’ll be the teacher you can be the lesson  

 I’ll be the preacher you can be confession                            He’ll be the Savior you can be confession’

I’ll be the quick relief to all your stressing                            He’ll be the quick relief to all your stressing

(This is my world)                                                                   (This is His world)

It’s a thin line between love and hate                                     He’s the line between love and hate
Is you really real or is you really fake?                                  He’s real, the world is fake!
I’m a soldier standing on my feet                                          I’m His soldier standing by His feet
No surrender and I won’t retreat                                           No surrender and I won’t retreat 

(This is my world)                                                                   (This is His world)

 

PRECHORUS                                                                       PRECHORUS
Stand up now and face the sun                                               Stand up now and face the Son!
Won’t hide my tail or turn and run                                        Won’t hide from Him, or turn and run
It’s time to do what must be done                                          It’s time to do what must be done
And be a king when kingdom comes                                      And be the King’s when kingdom comes!!!!

 

The beginning of victory, is surrendering to Him!

 

Blessings,

 

the pilgrim