Awakening a Keen Observer

Thursday, June 23, 2005


John's mother who just got home from Afghainstan in april is coming to see us. She is 84. She had a remarkable experience and it was not all easy, but it was good. There were so many ways she was able to contribute to the good of the kingdom. How blessed we are by her. And how the world is changed by the work she continues to do.

We will work on organizing the picitures she is going to share with others. She will sign some of the books Analea wrote about her. She will touch other lives.

Whose lives are you going to change today? Unless you stay home, alone, all day, no phone, (and those days happen now and then) you will influence someone. What do say to the people at the gas store...mail man.. you touch others. Will it be a time when the world is changed for the good.

Will you tell the woman who waits on your table what a lovely smile she has? Will you treat with kindness someone who is having a very bad day even if it doesn't seem to change them? (That reminds me one time of a waitperson who came to our table and said how's your day? We said our car broke down and we are waiting for a tow. She said, OH YEA! I broke my ankle and I'm still walking on it and can't go to the hospital until after my shift!) (oh my!)

You can surely touch someone in the world in a good way. There is an older Christmas Movie, One Magic Chrismas that addresses kindness.

Be ready.. We should sing Joy to the world in June.

Expect good things coming to you today and bring good things to others.
God abide

Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Monday, June 20, 2005

All Clear

I am looking at the weater report and amazed that there are red or purple or yellow or green sections or anything on the map. It is all clear
Well that means that tonight's Summer Solstice in the Northern Hemisphere ---moon will be full and beautiful. The summer comes in the middle of the night officially. Always interesting to me. Someone told me you can balance an egg on its end if you do it within a couple of hours of the solstice. We've tried it.

John and I got engated on the first day of summer in 1971. We didn't tell anyone unitl the next Feb. We made some plans of our own along the way. My how time flies.

There are so many ways that we find our ground. That we mark time. Women do so relationally it is said, linked to when something happend to them, related to the other event. Men will tell you years or dates more precise mostly. No complaint just observation .

We mark the longest day ... in ways that are different for all of us. We want to make the most of the light. So enjoy and remember back a few months ago when the shortest day came and we were sad about waking in the dark. But remethe mber too that our sun that shines is the sun for everyone---and the moon that shines on us is the moon for everyone. So share the world, and the light!

God abides with you

Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Saturday, June 18, 2005


Eli said to Samuel, “Go, lie down; and if [God] calls you, you shall say, ‘Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening’” (1 Sam. 3:9)

That was the lectionary reading for Friday. I remember this one well. When the first Gulf War started in the 90's we lived in Utah. A woman called from my church to talk about her sadness. It was the day my birthday. John was in Austin, TX working on his DMin and the children were in elementary school.

After I had spoken with this woman for some time I began to pray about what we were all watching on TV. The rockets and bombs over Baghdad brought to the world by CNN on live TV. Pictures and voice reporting. Obviously these reporters were on the front line.

I had prayed..God let me know your will for me in dealing with this war.
At some time during the night I fell asleep.
I woke to someone calling..Bobbie! Bobbie! are you there? Bobbie?

I was confused. My children didn't call me Bobbie, John was in Austin and yet I was sure I heard my name called clearly.
Again it came-- even more urgent.
Bobbie! Bobbie are you there?

I thought of the scripture and my prayer and thought...Oh my God I'm going to Baghdad! That's God calling me.

My heart raced and then I heard. Yes, this is Bobbie Batista (a CNN reporter in Atlanta ) Go ahead with your report John.
And the news continued with John Holliman's report.

I had fallen asleep with the TV on.. The live broadcast was the first time ever anyone had been at the center of a war zone on live TV. It wasn't scripted or very coordinated when it was on they were just narrating what they saw.

But I heard my name called

Today, I advocate this ---that we pray...:"Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening...:"
and then we listen to the call in our hearts.
What do you hear?

God abide
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Rev. Dr. Bobbie McGarey
daily readings can be found: :// then select Mission Yearbook for the daily reading.

Today the count of those who have died in the Second Iraq War is 1716 and 12,896 wounded. I suspect many of them fathers. You can see the pictures and read the stories of the men and women at this site among others.

Friday, June 17, 2005

check this out

now what are you having for dinner.

God Abide
Bobbie Giltz Mcgarey

fair trade

I am watching a program on clothing workers in Bangladesh. The kind we all see and buy at Wmart and other places. Do you know about fair trade and what that means? It means that the workers are fairly paid and protected from being exploited.
That means the women can take breaks to use the bathroom, to get a glass of water, to work normal work week with at least one day off. To hire workers of proper ages... there's more.
You can find out about it by doing a search on fair trade. There is fair trade coffee, tea, clothing, and you can insist that the garments you by are made that way.
Or you can not. Oh and by the way it's not just the inexpensive garments at discount stores. There are many name high class brands made under poor worker conditions. Just look at where they are made and that may tell you something.
No longer can companies use US workers it is just too inexpensive and to profitable to go other places.
Do we take away jobs for people who have so few other options... my goodness friends, there's work to be done.

God abide
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Like a Bug wing

I was driving home today and some big bug hit my windshield and stuck under the wiper. Somehow one of the wings was pinned right against the window. I don't know what it was, it flittered off before I could study the remnants. But I could see the wing. It was beautiful. The shape not curved but with some indentions that gave it a really lovely look. I was amazed. And then I remembered when I was studying entomology I learned the names of each of the lines on a flying insect. The lines, each one of them has a name. Oh trust me I don't remember them.
But friends, if humankind can name the lines on a bugs' wing ...surely it wouldn't be impossible for God to number the hairs on our heads, or to watch the sparrow... Can we not see the amazing world in which we live that gives us beauty in the wing of an insect, there is beauty enough for everyone.
let's not ever ever forget.
and do something beautiful for God.

God abide
Bobbie Giltz McGarey


Rev. Dr. Bobbie G. McGarey

Monday, June 13, 2005

the 'treasures'

My parish lost two of it's 'treasures' on Sunday to the Kingdom. They were in diffferent places and I'm not sure they even knew one another. But they are both going to have their services on Thursday.
Each of these 'ladies' and that is a true description of them, each one of them were important in their churches. They are now part of the 'saints'. Each of them outlived their spouses. Each one has a daughter, now taking care of business.
I told one that her work was to read the 14th chapter of the Gospel of John, it touched her.. do not let your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
Can we live into this all of us.
Not only when our hearts are hurting..
but when the world is spinning around us and we need a way to find the breath.
promises promises.. apply them and redeem them they are for you.

not be afraid..

God abide
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Rev. Dr. Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Power cord

Ok, I left my power cord for my computer with Betsy. She'll bring it down in a day or too...but I didn't discover it before the computer went into 'sleep' mode and -well-so--er---now I'm using John's computer till the cord arrives.
What have I learned?
A. Make a list
B. Check off the list

And perhaps a life lesson as well. We human beings run on batteries,until we 'get it'. That is to say we now and then recharge our batteries and go again but we forget the power cord. That cord I believe is our connection to the Holy. That connection that has unlimited length is what allows us not to rush around and try to finish tasks before our energy runs out---rather it allows our energy to be so completely constant that there is nothing we cannot do. All too often we expect ourselves to have all the answers, all the energy, when what we need to be doing is using the energy and power of the spirit to send us out to do God's work.

And that work is right there before us all. It could be the work of prayer. Focused intentional prayer for those concerns of our world where ever we are. It could be prayer for people in crisis. It could be prayer for ourselves.
That work could be advocating for someone who needs our help. That kind of help that they cannot do for themselves = mercy.
That kind of work could be for justice for those we don't even know personally but we know their situation in life and know that we have the power to effect change.
That kind of work could be a hug for a child who needs to feel the embrace of someone safe. kindness..
"To seek justice and mercy and kindness...."
Plug in to the power of God's love for you and you will have the energy for wonder-full life.

God abide
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Wednesday, June 08, 2005


The other day as I headed to the city on a tollroad I saw, as I sped by, a little tiny turtle, about fist size. It was headed toward the concrete median that runs the length of the tollroad. I easily passed over it as did the car that followed. Well that's two that didn't hit it.

I wished I could have stopped and turned it around. Intervention! Turn Back! Turn Back! But at 75 legal miles per hour I couldn't get back. So on to the City.

My daughter is taking her national medical boards that last two days. Wow what they demand of Doctors! I am so proud of her as he workes for her D.O. like her Great- Grandmother she'll be an Osteopath. She prepared well and by late this afternoon I believe she will have achieved that part of her goal, and will be ready for rotations. I went up to cook for her, deliver what food they wanted from nearby restraunts, and lend whatever support I can by doing a load of dishes or clothes.

On my way home two days later, after a long meeting, I recognized the area on the road where I had seen the turtle. I looked all around on the opposite lane and again at 75 mph didn't see sign of the turtle on the other side. Then I looked in my lane, there, really, there was a little turtle. Could it be? Could that little one have been out in that road two days and now half a lane from the safety of the 'other' side? I plan to think so.
I looked at the concrete barriers and noticed for the first time that there are places between the long concrete walls that are cut out. Maybe a foot long and eight inches or so high. I guess they are there for water --not turtles... Even so perhaps it works for turtles too.

So, does this apply to people too? Sometimes perhaps the people headed in the wrong direction need to stop and tell us not to worry, there is a break in the barrier and I can get through to the other side. And perhaps we need to see that getting to the other side can be done with some persistence.

By the way, Good luck today!

God Abides
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Rev. Dr. Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Pushing out the Blue

Heading home from the meeting Saturday we encountered some pretty impressive weather. The darkened sky before us made us stop and call a friend when we got to Chickasha before heading the last 30 miles to Duncan. She looked at the TV forcast and said, well, you wait about 10 minutes and then go because there is a small window between storms. We did that, but still got into some rain that made us reconsider and get ready to turn back, but we went on, trying not to be foolish. We got home fine and did what she said because as we pulled into our driveway another storm came through. We had just ---that much time---- to get through between storms.

Maya Angelou once in a tv interview with Bill Moyers talked about pushing out the blue. As I remember, and have told it from then till now, she said that in the center of big storms, like hurricanes, is the eye, and in the eye the sky is blue, I've stood in th eye of a hurricane, when I was young and visiting VA Beach. When the eye came over we snuck out of the house and looked up to see the stars Crystal Clear and just right there... The sky Navy Blue ... But the storm returned.
What Maya talked about was that we who are so blessed stand in the center of the storms of the world and it is our job to push out the blue, To push out the troubles of the world until they disappear and become nothing compared to the good of the world. The blue of the sky that we've all seen one time or another....that Good life that we all share...that challenges us in every way to be out there, being the people we are created to be.
Sometimes it takes acutally moving out into that spinning, offering peace and then seeing if the blue cannot be shared by everyone...
It isn't that hard... it's like threading the needle between storms... with God all things are possible. What are you going to do this day to 'push out the blue'? Standing in the calm presence of God in the middle of it all with you? Oh and remember this..YOU CAN DO THIS!

God abide

Have a great week
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Rev. Dr. Bobbie Giltz McGarey
Southwest OK Presbyterian Parish.


The regional governing body of the Presbyterian Church, the Presbytery, met with our sisters Presbyteries in Oklahoma this past weekend. It was such fun to worship with sisters and brothers around the state. The moderator of the national Governing body, the General Assembly (GA) was visiting and preached and led a conversation among those gathered and was all together delightful and inspiring. It was wonderful.

We invited Moderator Rick to eat with us and he sat at our table and listened with intensity and interst. We fill in a lot of gaps about what happens in the whole church when we share with him about the rural churches. Half of us at the table were rural pastors. Well really we had six churches between the two of us, Carol and myself. John and Dan only had one each.

What is it God is calling us to remind the world about rural ministry. About our being Mission Outposts. About the work that we are called to do where we are and how we live our lives in smaller number but in as big a dream of mission and service.... Moving beyond survival to thriving and living fully.

What can we do? We currently have a finite amount of human energy, but an infinite measure of heavenly graces. Sigh.

Let's get on with it while we have breath...

God abide
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Rev. Dr. Bobbie Giltz McGarey
Southwest OK Presbyterian Parish