In Todd We Trust

In the North American IRONMAN Championships, my brother-in-law Todd Wilson has just completed his amazing run in the 50-59 age category.

Fifteen hours, 27 minutes, 52 seconds.  Let this sink in….

The first leg, a 2.4 mile swim.

The second leg, a 112 mile bike ride.

And finally, a grueling 26.2 mile marathon run.

I can’t wrap my head around it, and I am so proud of this guy.  I’ll tell you his incredible story some day.

So glad to know you, brah.   Congratulations!!

Todd Wilson

Monday thoughts

Romans 1: 19-20

19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.

20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:

Luke 6:35

…do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again;


The video which follows was produced in Thailand, “The Land of the Free.”

If I ever needed evidence of  “that which may be known of God is manifest in them,”   it is presented here.

Certainly, the Spirit of the Gospel is alive and well in southeast Asia.

The video is poignant, thought-provoking, and extremely well-made.  Enjoy.






Looking For Abigail

I wanted to take a moment and share a local story of interest with our readers.  Please, if anyone sees Abigail, please respond at the links shown below.  Thanks …  Nuke!

Update:   Bloggers, please cut/paste this post on your own blogs.  Let’s help get the word out.



abigail bonnerThis is Abigail Bonner, my 17-year old niece in Madison, Mississippi. She has gone missing as of late night August 2 or early morning August 3rd. Police have begun searching without any results. If you see her, please contact us at 

Be sure to “like” our facebook page “Looking For Abigail”. Share the page and tell others to do the same so that we can spread the word about Abigail and she can come back home.






Please help find Abigail Bonner.
UPDATE:  Be on the lookout in the NJ/NY area… JWF:  I tagged your blog because you’re a Jersey guy.
Breaking (from FB):  We received information that seems to indicate that if Abagail is not in Madison or nearby, she may have made her way to the New York / New Jersey area.We are still continuing our search throughout Madison/Jackson because the information we received is not conclusive but it is sufficiently valid to ask for focused help from people in New York and New Jersey.

Happy Father’s Day!

From babies to ladies, we love our young’uns.

Happy Mother’s Day!

There is no love like a Mother’s love. It just isn’t possible.

Mother’s are Mighty.

Unfolded out of the folds of the woman, man comes unfolded, as is always to come unfolded,
Unfolded only out of the superbest woman of the earth, is to come the superbest man of the earth,
Unfolded out of the friendliest woman, is to come the friendliest man,
Unfolded only out of the perfect body of a woman, can a man be formed of perfect body,
Unfolded only out of the inimitable poem of the woman, can come the poems of man—only thence have my poems come,
Unfolded out of the strong and arrogant woman I love, only thence can appear the strong and arrogant man I love,
Unfolded by brawny embraces from the well-muscled woman I love, only thence come the brawny embraces of the man,
Unfolded out of the folds of the woman’s brain, come all the folds of the man’s brain, duly obedient,
Unfolded out of the justice of the woman, all justice is unfolded,
Unfolded out of the sympathy of the woman is all sympathy;
A man is a great thing upon the earth, and through eternity—but every jot of the greatness of man is unfolded out of woman,
First the man is shaped in the woman, he can then be shaped in himself.

Walt Whitman-Unfolded out of the folds

*Cross posted at Urban Grounds.*

Christ is Risen. Easter Sunday 2013

cesar_chavezs_86th_Easter-SundayThe most holy day of the Christian calendar, Easter Sunday, is the day that is celebrated to mark the Resurrection of Jesus from the dead. But not at Google. No, at Google, this isn’t Easter Sunday. It is Caesar Chavez’s 86th birthday.


bingContrast this with Bing, a large display of Easter Eggs.  Google has been my default search engine for years.  To “google” something is understood to mean to search for somthing on the web.

I think I’m going to change the default setting on my personal laptop to Bing.  Couldn’t hurt.  Plus, they have more respect for my faith than google does.


To my friends on the inner webs, “Happy Easter!  Christ is Risen!”


We’ve No Less Days

I picked up the copy of the Sunday bulletin for the 60th anniversary service of the Alta Woods UMC.   On the front page was the customary wide-angle photo of the church sanctuary.  In the lower left of the photo was another steeple, that of the Alta Woods Baptist Church.  If the photo could pan a hundred yards or so to the right, you would see the Alta Woods Presbyterian Church, and a few hundred yards to the right of that was the Carmelite Monastery.

I would see a group of the Carmelite Nuns each Saturday morning at the A&P as they did their grocery shopping.  I didn’t really know how to address them, “Miz” just didn’t seem right, so I just called them “Sister”, even though I wasn’t a Catholic.  It didn’t seem to bother them, though.  And between school, the A&P, and sleep, the true passion of my week was the time that I was able to spend with the youth of Alta Woods United Methodist Church.  Because for me, there was only one “Alta Woods.”  And coming back to celebrate this occasion was something  wonderful.  So full of tenderness and love, that I believe  that the celebration, not just the date on the calendar, is the real gift  to share and remember.

Forty years ago, the youth group was huge.  I don’t remember exact numbers, but I think maybe 100 or so high-school aged folks would get together each Sunday afternoon for choir and Sunday evening for MYF, and on Wednesday evenings for Bible Study.  Some of the parents in the adult Sunday School classes could probably give a better estimate, as they volunteered to feed this ravenous bunch of teenagers every Sunday afternoon.
Late night Kung Fu episodes at Sue Mac’s, choir tours, and lot of other activites contributed to what Travis Tichenor described to me this morning as  “a magical time that we were all fortunate to be a part of.”  I’ll always be grateful to Travis for inviting me to come to the youth choir that Sunday that my family visited Alta Woods for the first time.  I got that chance today, to thank him.  That was cool.   I suppose I should have also thanked him for prompting Sam Morris to let me sing the solo part of “I Believe in You.”   I was the new guy, and way to diffident to ask for myself.  David White told me today that he thinks of that song every time he thinks of me.

I didn’t get much time to talk with Murray  Nichols.  I hate that.  I spent many hours with ol’ Murray in his red VW.  Murray made me an 8-track copy of the first Dan Fogelberg concert that was broadcast on WZZQ.  I played that tape until it was unplayable.   I think I learned all the guitar and vocal parts to every song on that tape.  Thanks Murray.  I miss you, Bud.

I wish I could have gotten to everyone that I wanted to visit with.  And for those that couldn’t come, I missed them too.  The memories were as sweet as the pecan pie at the covered dish lunch.  It was delicious, by the way, and my wife didn’t believe me when I told her later, that I didn’t go back for seconds.  But I couldn’t have seconds and see the people that I wanted to see.  These are the people who shared their love for God with me, who loved me and welcomed me to their lives, and to this day, even though I rarely see them, are some of my best friends that I have, or will ever have.   And, even though it hadn’t occurred to me until just now, I spent only two years in this nurturing cocoon.  In my typical Baby-Boomer fashion, I find myself surprised to realize that the entire history of this congregation didn’t revolve around those two years.  So many other souls have been a part of the Alta Woods family, so many I’ve never known, but on this day, we were one in the Spirit, breaking bread together.

And now I am reflecting on memories of years gone by, of places and people dear to me.  Family, friends, fellowship, tender love:  it really doesn’t get any better than this in this lifetime.   And that, my friends, makes the next one even more amazing to contemplate.

Which was your piece of chicken?

This evening at Supper, I was taken on one of those memory jogs that lasts only a few seconds, but is as clear and vivid as any, by a question my wife asked her brother.

“How were your gizzards?”

And just like that I was sitting at the kitchen table 40 years ago in Natchez, waiting for the Blessing to be asked, and eyeing the prize that was the staple of so many Jones family Sunday dinners.

Momma’s fried chicken.

Brenda would take a drumstick.  Mom preferred the pulley bone  and the liver.  I would start with two pieces also, a thigh, and the gizzard.  Nobody else liked the gizzard, but I loved it.  Especially hot, and I would always eat it first.  Frank would take a thigh and the back, and Dad would get the breast.  Later on, Frank would begin to get the pulley bone, and Mom would take the other breast. I attributed this to favoritism until I realized that Mom had simply given up on the idea of stretching two meals out of one chicken.

So she was simply deciding to go ahead and let us finish it all in one sitting.

And boy could we eat.  Especially when Frank and I were both in our teens.  Dad would claim that it took so much to fill us up that our legs must have been hollow.

Momma‘s fried chicken is famous in our family for its seasoned crustiness, lovingly prepared, to tasty Southern perfection.

Even the gizzard.


A Thanksgiving Video

This day is celebrated as a day of Thanks from the earliest days of our nation. An annual reminder to reflect on all that we have to be thankful for.

In the times we are currently living, it isn’t difficult to overlook the many blessings we have even if we believe times are tough.

As columnist James Lewis wrote several years ago:

Gratitude is a noble virtue; you have to respect yourself to be grateful to others. Only those who feel blessed can be filled with gratitude. It is a kind of courtesy of the heart.

I encourage all to be thankful, have gratitude and be kind to yourselves.

*Cross-posted at Urban Grounds*

Happy Father’s Day

This picture is from around 1958. My Dad, my big brother, and me.

I miss you Dad.

Welcome Home

(Pearl Harbor: Nuke’s nephew gets a warm welcome from his family)

Seasonal Videos Gone Viral

From Gateway Pundit, two terrific seasonal videos that are racking up views.

First, with nearly 10,000,000 views in 18 days.

Next, with over one and a half million views in 9 days.

To my Christian friends, Merry Christmas.
To my Jewish friends, Happy Hanakkah.

Happy Anniversary

Happy Anniversary, Babe! You’re the best.

Easter Sunday 2010

The Mrs. and I drove up to Jackson today for the morning worship service at my Mom’s church. We were joined by my son, his wife and their new bundle of joy, my sister, her husband, and their three kids.

Mom was mighty proud to have her family present for the service, especially since my daughter was singing a special music piece. Naturally, I was a pretty proud papa.

I recorded all but a couple of seconds, which were blocked by the usher passing by my seat.


And, Happy Easter, y’all.

He is risen.

Merry Christmas

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.

And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.

And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,

Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.

And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. Luke 2:8-16

Issues update

I took a lickin’, but I’m still tickin’.

Surgery sucked bad. Kidney was stage 2 renal cell carcinoma, but contained.

Radiation treatments for maltoma sucked.

But, not quite as bad.

Doc says, “99% cure. I’d give you a 100%, but I’m an M.D., not a G-O-D.” Heh™
(And, that reminds me of several “God Moments” that have occurred over the past 90 days or so. Remind me to tell you about them sometimes.)

Looks like y’all are going to have to put up with me a bit longer.

Happy Thanksgiving y’all

Thanksgiving greetings from the Hacienda Del Nuko!

Hope y’all have a great one.

The “Get-out-of-housework-free” Card

Sometimes, the best answers are the simplest.

And, sometimes, the simplest answers are the best.

When they come together, it’s like … synchronicity!

From the Mail (h/t bonz)

A study has found that household chores – including using a vacuum cleaner or microwave oven – could reduce a man’s chances of having children.

Researchers exposed male volunteers to electromagnetic fields – high doses of which are produced by all electrically charged objects, including refrigerators and vacuum cleaners – and found such exposure could double the risk of having poor-quality sperm.

Great idea, especially for you younger whipper-snappers.

But, I gotta say, the idea of raising a family, again, leaves me exhausted just thinking about it.
Think I’ll have a nap.

Weekend prayer request

I learned yesterday that my good friend’s wife may be about to face some difficult health issues. I want them both to know that they are high in my thoughts and prayers.

Certain prayers availeth much: effectual, fervent prayers of righteous men and women. Those are the ones that I covet most for my friends, Bobby and Pamela.

I humbly ask the Lord to grant them His special favor, lifting up his Countenance upon them, and bringing them Peace, as only He can.

I pray in Jesus’ name.


Friday gratitude list

It’s long.

Trust me.

Sunday Mojo


L’il Nuke came home from the hospital today.

That’s is one fine looking boy (and a mighty proud Grandpa).

Get your Mojo on!

MojoWelcome to the world L’il Nuke.

Grandpa is mighty proud to see you!

Mom and baby are fine. Nuke, Jr. is one proud papa.

Ahhhh.  Life is good.

Cigars, anyone?


“Hi Nuke.  Howya doin’?”

“Oh, pretty good.  How ’bout you, Doc?”

“Good.  Look, I need you to drop by my office.  Are you in town today?”

“Yeah, I can be there in 30 minutes.”

“Great.  Come on by.”

—   —  —

I knew it wasn’t going to be good news.

They don’t call and tell you to come right over just to tell you good news, unless you’re at a much higher pay grade than I am.

Looks like ol’ Nuke has some big-time health issues.  I’ll be going under the knife, so to speak, and then, God only knows.  As a believer, I’m mighty glad about that last part.

At best, these are life-changing  events.  And, if I’m not so fortunate, well, if it’s my time, then so be it.

The running joke with Mrs. Nuke, is that I’m an “idea man,”  basically meaning that I’ve got bunches of unfinished projects around the Hacienda Del Nuko. And, that’s the tough part:  I just hate leaving so much unfinished business, know what I mean?  There are grandkids to play with, gardens to plant, plans to make, trips to take, love to share, and so much to discover.

So much unfinished business.


Later y’all.


The Laux Family. Someone You Should Know!

In the current culture wars, the battle between life and death has been brought into view by political events.

The debate over the proposed health care reform has created much consternation, with the idea of “death panels” being promoted by pending legislation, as well as government funded abortions.

A story, in two parts, has reminded me that each day there are new stories of life and death, of hope for loved ones, young and old.

These stories appeared in the Dallas Morning News. While I’m a Dallas resident, I seldom scan this publication, but due to divine direction, I discovered this story last week.

Before I post the links, I should caution any that read these stories of unrequited love for an unborn child, tears are guaranteed to follow. Having a towel handy would be recommended, as I found Kleenex was inadequate.

The first story, introduces us to Deidrea and T.K. Laux, and the discovery that their unborn child is a boy that has a severe condition, trisomy 13. They learned what the prognosis was and what their options were, and chose life for their child, knowing it may be only for minutes.

Those(tests) confirmed that Thomas had trisomy 13. The condition is fatal and so rare that only three or four babies are born with it yearly in Collin County and only six or eight in Dallas County.

After hearing the grim prognosis, T.K. spoke first: Thomas was meant to be theirs, he told the doctors, and Thomas had a purpose. However brief his life might be, it was a gift.

The second, and last part of the story, introduces us to Thomas Gordon Laux, and his brief time with us here on Earth. Thomas left them and went to God, on Independence Day 2008.

“We never knew that we could love that much,” Deidrea said. “Our son brought us together and taught us how to be a family.”

Thomas also showed them how much God cared about the details of their lives. They felt God’s presence in every doctor and nurse, in their hospital and hospice.

“We learned that God is still in the business of miracles,” she said. “Some people say, ‘Well, you didn’t get the miracle.’ … But we did.”

“Thomas was a miracle from the moment he was conceived,” she told the congregation. “We are better because Thomas existed.”

As painful a story as this is to read, the lessons of life and love are numerous.
There are likely many such stories we never hear about, and even more likely that too many parents take the option of terminating the pregnancy.
While I don’t know the Lauxes, I think I know who they are, and am blessed to know of them.

At LGF2.

WFFOT: Third Anniversary Edition

(forwarded from Brenda)

Lawyers should never ask a Mississippi grandma a question if they aren’t
prepared for the answer.

In a trial, a Southern small-town prosecuting attorney called his first
witness, a grand motherly, elderly woman to the stand. He approached her and
asked, “Mrs. Jones, do you know me?”

She responded, “Why, yes, I do know you, Mr. Williams. I’ve known you since
you were a young boy, and frankly, you’ve been a big disappointment to me.
You lie, you cheat on your wife, and you manipulate people and talk about
them behind their backs. You think you’re a big shot when you haven’t the
brains to realize you never will amount to anything more than a two-bit
paper pusher. Yes, I know you.”

The lawyer was stunned! Not knowing what else to do, he pointed across the
room and asked, “Mrs. Jones, do you know the defense attorney?”

She again replied, “Why, yes, I do. I’ve known Mr. Bradley since he was a
youngster, too. He’s lazy, bigoted, and he has a drinking problem. He can’t
build a normal relationship with anyone and his law practice is one of the
worst in the entire state. Not to mention he cheated on his wife with three
different women. One of them was your wife. Yes, I know him.”

The defense attorney almost died.

The judge asked both counselors to approach the bench and, in a very quiet
voice, said, “If either of you idiots asks her if she knows me, I’ll send
you to the electric chair.”


This is the World Famous Friday Open Thread: a free speech zone. Track-backs welcome.

WFFOT: Celebrating our third anniversary on the internet this weekend….
Thank you readers!


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