Friday, February 27, 2009

It's Easier . . .

Found this at Revitalize Your Church:

It is easier to fix the blame than to fix the problem.
It is easier to make excuses than to make progress.
It is easier to duck responsibility than to take it.
It is easer to find fault than to appreciate good qualities.
It is easier to daydream than it is to pursue a dream.
It is easier to rock the boat than to row it.
It is easier to worry than to pray.
It is easer to put off a chore than to tackle it.
It is easer to blame society than to improve it.
It is easier to be self-serving than to be self-sacrificing.
It is easier to critique from the stands than to play on the field.
It is easier to spend money than to save it.
It is easier to waste time than to invest it.
It is easier to watch the news than to make it.
It is easier to follow the familiar path than to blaze a new trail.
It is easier to complain than to cheer.
It is easier to condemn than to bless.
It is easier to reprimand than to encourage.
It is easier to argue than to understand.
It is easier to talk than to listen.
It is easier to gossip than to praise.
It is easier to walk by sight than by faith.
It’s easier to ride the wagon than to push it.
It’s easier to be a victim than to be victorious.
It is easier to fail than to succeed.

The rewards of life come with price tags called hard work and commitment. Those to follow the path of least resistance will inherit the wind.

You’ll know when you’re on the right road – because it’s UPHILL all the way!

Rise to the challenge, and in the end, you will find sweet victory.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Weekend Reflections

Just some random thoughts from this weekend:
  • Got stuffed at IHOP on Friday night. I got rather embarrassed by my teenage boys (ages 16 & 14). They got all-you-can-eat pancakes and couldn't even eat the first round. Dang!
  • The ApologetiX concert on Friday was good. They take popular songs and make parodies of them and put Christian lyrics to them. So . . . I got to hear some of my favorite 80s tunes really loud!
  • Our Angel Food distribution on Saturday morning turned out real good! It was cool to see an 18-wheeler at our Fellowship Hall ready to unload. We were able to help over 300 folks cut their food bill in half. That's awesome!
  • We went to Norfolk Naval Base for an Eagle Scout Recognition Luncheon for our son, Kaleb. It was pretty cool to meet some pilots and tour some of the aircraft. At the luncheon, we were assign tables, and we were assigned to table 3. When we get to table 3, I recognize that one of the folks sitting there was someone that I should know. It turns out that we were sitting with MC, LaSalle Blanks of WVEC-TV 13 in Norfolk. Also sitting with us was the guest speaker, Major Schweiss from the US Army. She just returned from six months in Bagdad. Lots of great stories around the lunch table.
  • Probably the most unusual fact learned about LaSalle Blanks is that he plays in a kickball league. Never heard of it. Apparently is pretty big in some places. In fact his team won the 2008 World Adult Kickball Championship in Las Vegas. Who knew?
  • Great day at church today! Today we focused on the idea that You Can't Please Everyone. Basically, we tend to be people pleasers and think more of what people think than what God thinks. It seems that several wanted God to be bigger and what others think - smaller in their life. Awesome!
  • Went to Andy's today for lunch after church. New little tradition for us. We've been there the last several weeks. Not real healthy - but awesome in taste! We tend to laugh a lot while we are there. Today was no different.
  • Getting pumped about the possibilities of new facilities. Our Campaign Team is working hard, we'll begin to see some things before long.
  • Stinking tired of this cold. I've had it for over week. It's a little better but much. Didn't go to the YMCA at all last week, trying to rest and get over the cold. After prayer time in the morning with the fellas, I'm going to hit the Y hard.
  • Kaleb starts Driver's Ed this week. Kendall gets his license in a little over a month. Anyone want to contribute to the Spaugh Insurance Fund?
  • Big week coming up. Lots of things to get done. Lots of funs to do. Can't wait!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


Just got started on Facebook. Don't know why I haven't done this before. Already reconnected with High School and College friends. Check it out!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

One of them days . . .

I have not felt well since Sunday evening, some kind of bad head cold thing. Usually I shake these colds, but this one wants to hang on. At times today, I have felt real bad.

But right now, I feel awesome! I just found out that our February order for Angel Food is 435 boxes! That's great, but not the best part. We just got confirmation that Angel Food Ministries will send the food to us - in Bagley Swamp! We are now a direct ship location! We no longer have to go to Portsmouth, VA at 3 am to pick up the food. It will be at our church at 6am! Can you say Awesome!

Also on a high note, just spent an hour or so meeting about our Compassion Ministries. We are looking to start a ministry in our county where we do small home repair and the like. We have done this type of thing when we have gone on mission trips, but it is now time to bring it home. So . . . that's what we are going to do. I'm pumped about the possibilities with this! More news coming soon!

Needless to say, my cold is not any better, but I'm feeling better!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Angel Food

Just found out that we have close to 400 orders of Angel Food for the February order. Wow! That's a lot of food. This is what amazes me - this is only our fourth month and last month we had around 200 orders. This is awesome! Impacting people with a felt need.

A huge WHOO-HOO! to the Angel Food Team and all of the work that they have been putting in. Be praying for Saturday as the food is picked up - for smoothness in getting the food - and that connections are make for the Kingdom.

Saturday, February 14, 2009


Just wanted to pass along something that I have found to be benefitical. I have been reading more this year, so I've decided to do something a little different with my time in the Bible. I have been listening to the Daily Audio Bible on podcast each day. I have read through the Bible in a year several times, so this year I am listening my way through the Bible.

Check it out at I have subscribed to the daily podcast through iTunes, so I automatically get it everyday.

Friday, February 13, 2009

God's Dawg

Found this at Revitalize Your Church and thought I'd share it with you.

The Newbie

Back in August 2008, Amy and I joined the YMCA. We have enjoyed our membership and usually go to the Y each weekday morning and workout before work. I usually work out with weights and do a lot of the cardiovascular machines.

In November of 2008 we got real brave and decided to take a spinning (cycling) class. One of the guys that I have gotten to know began taking the class and suggested that we try it. He said that it was hard, but that it would really help us get in shape.

Amy had tried the class earlier at a different Y and said that she felt like she was going to pass out. That wasn’t too encouraging, but I had to try it.

Here are the basics of the class: There is an instructor that leads the class. The class lasts 45 minutes and it involves peddling the whole time on a stationary bicycle, sometimes standing up, sometimes sitting down. The resistance on bike changes according to the instructor’s instructions, making a quite difficult workout.

So, we show up and the instructor has to help us adjust the bikes for our size. Then he gives us a few pointers, and then we start. It’s pretty obvious that we don’t know what we are doing. We’re looking around, trying to follow what everyone else is doing, trying to not look out of place. There are times that we have to sit back in the saddle (seat) when everyone else is still up because it hurts too bad. We endure it, and make it through the class without passing out.

Since that day in November, Amy and I have been regulars in the early morning spinning class. It is usually the same group of people, and we’ve gotten to know each other. In fact, we all know “whose bike is whose” since we tend to go to the same bike each time. We continue stories from the previous class, as well as push each other during the workout. It’s a good group of people.

Well, just a few days ago, a new person came to class that had never been to a spinning class before. He had to be taught how to adjust the bike, how to get on, and all of the basics. He didn’t know when to get out of the saddle, and couldn’t do it for long at all. In fact, several times the instructor seemed to ease up on the work out so the newbie could make it and not pass out. And to top it all off, the newbie had taken a bike of one of the regulars.

So what do you think the response of the regulars was to the newbie? I mean, the newbie cost someone their regular bike, the routine of the class was messed up, the workout was less to make allowance for him. The entire class – encouraged him! One person offered their seat pad (the bike seats are hard!). Those around him offered pointers on technique to make spinning easier. Everyone clapped and congratulated him when the class was over!

As the Body of Christ, we need to “work out” ourselves, but always keeping the eye out for the newbie in the journey of following Christ and encourage. We need to make sure that we are not in our “own little group” and ignore the person who is trying to figure it all out. We all were new once. In fact, we need to be inviting our friends and family to embark on the journey of following Christ. May we connect with God . . . and each other.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

3 Great Reads

As Valentine's Day approaches, I'd like to recommend three excellent books on the Marriage Relationship:

1) Love As A Way of Life Devotional, by Dr. Gary Chapman (author of the Five Love Languages), is a heartwarming spiritual guide for couples. This 90-day journey is a great way for couples to begin the habit of sharing a few moments of spiritual reflection together in a non-threatening way. It shows how to be a loving person -- full of kindness, patience, forgiveness, courtesy, humility, generosity and honesty.

2) Cheryl and Jeff Scruggs tell their amazing story of brokenness and redemption in I Do Again. Their marriage was broken beyond repair. Too much damage had been done. Yet, through spiritual renewal, they found their way back to each other. Conflicted couples ought to read it.

3) For Couples Only: Eye Opening Insights on How the Opposite Sex Thinks by Jeff and Shaunti Feldhahn, is really a two-book combo. The first book is For Men Only and the second is For Women Only. These books give practical, down to earth advice for keeping the spark of love glowing in your relationship! (No wonder they've sold over a million!!)

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Back in Bagley Swamp

We arrived in Bagley Swamp this afternoon just before 3:30. The ride home was rather uneventful, and we make our usual stop at a Chick-fil-a. We never seem to stop at the same one, and it always seems to be an adventure to find one close to the interstate at lunch time.

We are grateful for what God has done in us and through us this past week. We look forward to what God has in store for us as we continue in the Wild Goose Chase. BTW, we conclude that series tomorrow - it's been great! Can't wait!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Friday Night in Richwood

Today the projects were finished up. The Craigsville crew finished at Frank and Jane's house. They were impacted by and made an impact on Frank and Jane. The crew saw God at work in their conversations and in their physical improvements to their house.

The new door was installed at the Faith UMC church. Now the church is more secure and looks better. The crew was able to talk a lot to Pastor Kelly. Faith UMC is her first church to solo pastor and I believe our crew was a big encouragement to her. She was able to eat lunch with us today at Dairy Queen.

The work at Ms. Helen Sears home was completed today. The plumbing was fixed several days ago, but Edward, Todd and Annie went back today to do some cosmetic work in the bathroom and to talk to her. A lot of her family stopped by while they were there. They left a Bible with her.

After supper at the pantry, some of us went to Wal-Mart in Summersville (4 guys). Eight of us went to the skating rink in Richwood. We were able to have fun and talk with several folks. We weren't able to do an outreach type event like we had hoped since we never got in touch with the owners. We were able to spend time with those running it, and they have a big heart for the kids in Richwood. They told us that the swimming pool will re-open this summer (closed for 5 years). They were excited because it will give the kids and teens something to do and a gathering place. I was very encouraged by what I saw and the conversations that I had.

We have seen God at work in our lives this week. We know that God has used us and has worked in our lives. We look forward to how God will continue to work in our lives as we return to Bagley Swamp tomorrow. We plan to be home by supper.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Thursday Afternoon in Richwood

Today is still cold. The temp right now is 15. The same crew that went to Craigsville yesterday went back today. Edward, Todd, Craig and William have gone over to Faith UMC to finish installing a new door to the basement. We went over this morning and removed the old door that was damaged by someone who broke into the church.

It seems that we have heard over and over of many places that have been broken into. The skating rink that we went to in a previous trip has "Already broken into - everything stolen" spray painted on the door. We have also heard of how bad the drug problem is here. I don't know if it is just who we are talking to - but it seems pretty bad.

This afternoon the crew in Richwood plans to head to Craigsville to meet up with the crew at Frank's place. We are going to check out what they have been working on. Then we are headed to Summersville and go out to eat. We look forward to this outing together.

We are trying to contact the owner of the skating rink to see if we can get it open for Friday night. If we can, we would like to do some type of event for the teens in the community. Be praying that we will have the opportunity to interact with the community at large though something like this.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Wednesday Evening in Richwood

Today was cold with the high around 17. It seemed to snow almost all day with the snow about 6 to 8 inches covering the ground. It is still snowing now.

A crew of Lewis, Jeff, Wade, Chris and John went back to Frank’s in Craigsville. They were able to work inside. The moved a gas heater into the new room they were working on. They also installed some new outlets, a new light, and added in a new door to the room. Some great conversations were had with Frank and Jane, and God seems to be working in their lives and in the lives of the crew.

The rest of the crew was at the pantry today. We installed some new fans and did some painting and touching up to make the place look and feel better. Most of the work around the pantry was done by the middle of the afternoon – so some card playing took place.

Just before dark, myself, Todd, Craig, Christy, Edward, Troy and Belinda went sledding. We bought some cheap plastic sledding “disks”. The first place we went was rather steep – we had fun, but some will be sore. We then walked around town trying different places to sled. It was fun to get out together – and I guess it was rather obvious that we were from out of town – we were the only ones out playing in the snow. BTW, only one sledding disk made it back in one piece.

God is doing some great things and we having a blast. In fact, I hear a lot of laughter from down the hall – I’m missing out.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Tuesday Evening In Richwood

First of all, my friends Matt LeRoy and Justin Simmons are having their initial public Bible study as a church plant in Chapel Hill. They are meeting in a restaurant on Franklin Street. Pray for the City on a Hill Project as they meet at 7pm.

Today we woke to snow falling and pretty scenery. We had to make sure we could get around, so we got a little later start. Lewis, Jeff, Chris, Wade and Troy went to Craigsville to continue on a project started by others at Frank's house. Their work involved installing plywood on the interior of a room connecting the house to a garage. The folks there fed them lunch and they had a great time. They plan to return tomorrow to put on some vinyl siding and some electrical work. Apparently they went on a Wild Goose Chase on their way over, getting lost and turning on roads that seem to take them off road. They finally made it.

Edward, Annie, and Todd went to Ms. Helen Sears (from yesterday) today to install a new sink faucet and finish some installation. They were done by lunch.

The rest of the crowd were around the pantry and town getting to know more folks. After lunch we all (minus the Craigsville crew) went to the Faith UMC parsonage to tear out some flooring in the basement and some light plumbing work. Belinda and Veronica get the MVP award since they hauled most of the flooring down to the street level (up and down 40 steps for each load).

We are all back at the pantry now and enjoying spaghetti for supper. We anticipate a lot of snow by morning. We have seen God working in our lives and in the lives of the folks that we have met. Looking forward to tomorrow.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Monday Evening in Richwood

Today we got started on some projects. William, Troy, Belinda & Veronica painted the ceiling in three rooms for Water Demptsy here in Richwood. They were finished by noon. Mr. Demptsy had retired from Ford in Ohio, but moved back to his native Richwood to be near family. After lunch they went to help move food and clothing at a nearby church to a different building so the food would not freeze. They were able to finish fairly quick and were the first done for the day.

Edward and I went to Ms. Helen Sears' home, on the hill across from the pantry. Her pipes had burst a while back, and her son-in-law and her fixed where she had water in the house, but had capped the lines to her shower, toilet and sink in her bathroom because there was a significant leak. We ended up having to cut into her bathroom floor since the house was only off the ground about 6 inches under the bathroom. We were able to get water back to her toliet and sink. She said not to worry about the shower since she uses the tub. We insulated the pipes under the house and Ed will go back to replace the sink faucet tomorrow.

The rest of the crew went to work on a church in Burnsville and Pastor Rodney Jamison met them there. We didn't know how far it was away until they went there - 1.5 hours away. They worked on boarding up some windows and installing dead bolt locks(to prevent further break-ins). They also removed the linoleum in the large meeting room and replaced it with some type of carpet squares. The also got some baseboard heating for that room. This crew finished up a little after 6 and hasn't returned yet. Pray for their safe return.

We had snow in Richwood today, enough to get everything white and the back roads a little slick. No snow, but some drizzle in Burnsville. The forecast here suggests that Richwood will get between 6-12 inches of snow between now and Wednesday. We would like to see some, but would still like to be able to do work.

We already have seen God at work. Pray that we will be used by Him.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Sunday Evening In Richwood

We made it to Richwood around 4:40pm today. We have gotten unloaded, unpacked and settled in. We have even checked on a couple of jobs that we can start on tomorrow. It looks like tomorrow we will be checking on a plumbing project (pipes had frozen), a painting project, and some work over at a church in Burnsville (about 25 minutes away). We will be able to get some work done and also be able to assess what else needs to be done.

It seems that people here are still on hard times. The hospital closed in May, with over 100 people losing their jobs. However, the place next to where we are staying (an old Pizza Hut) is remodeling and going to open in a few weeks, so who knows.

We are safely here, and looking forward to what God has in store for us and the people we meet. As you probably expect, still no mobile phone service for any of us. More tomorrow.

Oh yeah, we are watching the Super Bowl. Taking a half-time break.