Awakening a Keen Observer

Wednesday, February 28, 2007


NEW YORK - An eBay bidder on Saturday paid a record $1.27 million for what experts say is the world's most valuable baseball card of Hall of Fame shortstop John Peter Wagner. This is from the news.
Then there is this report
• HUD study finds 745,000 homeless on a single night in January 2005
• Nearly half the people in shelters were adult men; a quarter were children
• 24 percent of adults living in shelters were disabled
Whew. I mean really? Is it possible? What could this mean? How do we explain to folks we know that this amount was spent on a baseball card. I don't care what part of a holy grail it is seen to be. Contrast that with the 745 thousand homeless. Oh my.

How do I explain to people I know in India that we sell baseball cards for this much in a country where there are hungry people? In a world where there are hungry people... But then again we by big rocks to put into our yards for decoration. Buy rocks.

What are we thinking? Seriously ... each of us in our own way needs to rethink how we spend what we have. What are we thinking?

I've got to go and put some shoes I don't often wear in a bag for the Good Will. What else can I take?

God abide
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Tuesday, February 20, 2007


Some time ago a friend sent me the link for the live Camera at Old Faithful in Yellowstone Park. I was looking through my links this morning and came to it. As I saw it just now the winter is full there with the sky and the ground only marked by the trees in the middle. Old Faithful however was about to be itself and so for about three minutes I waited, online, watching and was not disappointed. At the top of the page where the camera is there is a clock that will tell you plus or minus 10 minutes of when the next eruption will happen. Faithful it is.
Can you imagine the first person who observed this? Where were they standing? When did it come to them that this was a regular happening? How did they explain this spewing of steaming water? When did they make of it? Was it attributed to some distant god or merely natural earth happening?
I never saw Yellowstone National Park in the winter but spent a wonderful week there one summer. It is a place that gives the word Awe-some it's meaning. The varied parts of the Park are incredible. The water falls, the Grand Canyon part of it, the springs, all of them. Sigh, awesome. I have often thought that sitting in a chair in one place all day would be close to perfect. Just watching the changes with the light.
Where would you like to spend a day? Just sitting and thinking and watching the time pass? Quiet, no phone, computer, or watch.... just waiting through the day?
and b r e a t h i n g ..."

God abide
Bobbie Giltz McGarey
this is the 555th post ...

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Wild Wind Wild Words

Mr Krusi would ask us where the wind comes from and where does it go? He was over 100 years old and we'd spend time with he and his wife. She would ask me, Why did God take our youngest son--I miss him so? The son had died 40 years ago. There are questions that have no answer that will satisfy. These questions I believe are universal.
Last Summer in our travels I would talk with the women who were often off to the side of the discussions on theology. I asked them, What is your heart's deepest desire? They would often pause. I would wait and ask if they wanted me to rephrase that question and then would try and ask something they could completely understand. They were often touched that I asked. Their answers were often the same. Many said, rest, their children to be well and happy, their families to have enough to live on so they didn't worry about their finances. If I asked them what would they want for themselves personally they would hesitate and have to think even longer. This was not a question that obviously was present on their minds.
I asked one young woman who had translated for me during a worship service and held her hand as I asked. She teared up and said. I want to finish Seminary and be married. I asked where she was in school and she had one more year. Then I said, and the married part, is there someone special or do you just generally just want to get married. She grinned and almost blushed and said... oh yes we have started making plans.
These were women in different cultures in different parts of the world. But they were first women. The wild wind of the spirit seemed to be the same.
Alas, I see pictures of women and children in refugee camps, hungry children clinging to their mother's hungry bodies. Their questions are different. Would that wind of the Spirit would allow us all to hold the same heart and desire. Would that the spirit of peace would blow as the wild wind ...from wherever it comes from and to wherever it goes.

God abides
Bobbie Giltz McGarey
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Monday, February 12, 2007

Use Words

Molly ---
See right there, I have a problem. Molly is many things, She is my daughter by marriage to my son, she is daughter in law, she is.. just this wonderful person, so I will just call her My Molly...

My Molly teaches 4th grade. She is a great teacher. I've observed her at work and see how the children respond. They do so with respect not with intimidation. She works hard with them and they are wonderful. When in her class two of them have a problem she suggests to them that they go out into the hall and discuss it. They have learned to articulate is going on between them, name it, and then discuss it with the other person. Wow!

Why don't nations do such things together? Perhaps it is the environment of equality that My Molly creates that helps this happen. Perhaps it is that all feel valued and no one has to prove something over the other. I don't kow but it sounds in this world of ours that we need another way ... what if a group of nations, all of them, had one place they could meet face to face and honestly work on their concerns. There is such a place. Let's get to it before our world needs more than to go outside and talk one to another.

Use your words to communicate. We will all be better for it.

God abide!
Bobbie G McGarey

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

The Wash

Along the road we passed a house. The woman was out at the clothes line getting the jeans off the line. They were blowing in the wind still though stiff and dry. From a distance the glimpse of her I had she looked happy. Something about her body language.
By the house, watching a 2 year old in his daddy's arms. His arm around his dad's neck in a seeming gesture of affection not a holding on. They seemed as well to be enjoying the moment.
And then we had moved on. What are their stories? Oh I know you will say there are many stories we could have of friends and family that we don't ask. But what are the stories of those who pass us by so quickly.
A few weeks ago at a gas station I'd gone in for a coke and there were two men who were my age and looked like they had stories they could tell. I don't know who they were or what they did but they were unique in their look and manner.
Do some folks just want to tell you their story? Are we trying hard enough to get the stories of the 'treasures' who are around us. What they remember should be shared. What a gift that would be.
What do you remember about... the war (any war will do) your family, your pets, your schoolwork, share it ...pass it on...

Now that family will not be in that Norman Rockwell pose again. There will be no pictures on the internet or magazine covers. But there was a reason to celebrate their being there in that moment in time and being allowed that glimpse into life.

God abidees
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Monday, February 05, 2007


We hear this word often it seems. I don't know how much we apply it as a rule of faith or as a, well, Big-Maybe. What I am trying to say is that if we really hope then we place outside of ourselves the control of the world. And, well, if you haven't figured this out before now, we aren't really in control after all. Well, sometimes we wish maybe we were. Maybe we could make things happen that would make our lives easier. Maybe we could change the weather so it wouldn't rain n a friends wedding. Again, I hope--place outside myself--that you don't think you can control such things.

We hope and then rest back in the sure and certain knowledge of God's love for us. We hope and then we rest back in the sure and certain knowledge that we make the choices that are before us as God's love leads us.

Our hope is built on nothing less.. that God's love for the world...and that is true solid ground.

God abide
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

God abide

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Whither the Cross

Have you heard of the crosses of the Prairie? They are the ones that were made from wrought iron and mainly by the German settlers in the prairie in the Dakotas and West. They were made because wood was scarce and precious. This was the remnant of the horse shoe materials and the artists who put them together. Apparently each artist had their own way of doing the bending, or the filigree, or the surrounding metal around the heart of the cross.
A few days ago in Oklahoma City, in a large Dept. Store, (Dillards) I was on the second floor looking at the sale items they had around. There was a huge Celtic cross, or it claimed to be. It must have been almost 4' tall with elaborate decorations. There was and is an irony in that. What would Jesus have us pay for the cross that would bear his name and body? There are many mysteries written about THE cross... but would Jesus not give the money to the poor?
I think of this when I hear how much a minute's advertisement will be on the US's SuperBowl. Thousands, more and more each year for the minute or 1/2 minute of commercial time, because so many people will be watching! But where are the advs for the churches saying welcome? Would that time would be donated.
So then, I wonder, (and wander) when was the last time we witnessed to the culture about God's love for all humankind? Or can we more readily tell you what we bet on the Final Four, or the Rose or whatever Bowl game you might be watching.

But then I suppose you should ask ... When is the time? I really want personally to be ready.

God swoops down and catches us up in the mighty hand and brings us peace. Peace that can't be bought at a yard sale or in a dept. Store? What is that about?
We take so little time, it seems, to be who God created us to be. What if we really did live what we claim to beleive and rest back in the healing of God's hand.
God abides --this I believe..

God abide
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Friday, February 02, 2007

Need a Hug?

We had been at the Children's Home in Dhanari India for 4 days. It was not long enough and we all wanted to stay. The Children had their Christmas with us and we had a wonderful time with them. It was unlike any Christmas any of us had experienced before.

Our train left a nearby town early in the morning so we had to leave the home about 6:15 am. So knowing this the last evening we were with the kids we were enjoying every minute. They had already eaten but because of a late return of some of our group from a day trip our dinner was still waiting us. We left the gathering of the children but I said to the leader? When is it time for some hugs? He smiled his wry smile and said well now would be ok.
The children were looking all around and I went to the front and sat on the stage and said...Well, come on then...who wants a hug?
A teenage boy from the back came running up and it began. Eighty hugs and kisses. Eighty children embracing me. I was so lucky. Golly I got all those hugs and they got only one. Some were so tight and others so tentative. Some kissed both cheeks and others were crying. I kept smiling and hugging. One girl said can I have a second one. Oh yes. I said...and it began again.
These children are students in the Home and live there because at this time their parents cannot provide for them. The parents have leprosy and live in varied housing and places. In the Home the children are loved, and fed, and sheltered and taught, not only school subjects but life lessons. They live as a huge exteneded family caring for one another. There is a joy about their faces that is hard to find anywhere else. It is a joy at knowing at the heart of things they are loved by God. They know this because God provides people to support them financially thought the supporters are strangers. It doesn't matter. They are not really strangers they are united by a love for Jesus.
Hugs all around.
My goodness I've still got hugs to redeem. And to give....

God abide
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Is it the same where you are?

Today I had to decide whether to venture out into the weather and visit the hospital in Oklahoma City. I went to my car which was covered with ice, not too thick, but there, and then snow. It began to snow again some as I walked the dog about 10 minutes later and decided that this was probably not the day to be on the road. I later learned the roads weren't too bad...but I couldn't judge from here exactly how it was there...and so I will visit tomorrow.

We expect somehow that where we are is how it is everywhere. Well not as much now as we are connected by sight and sound around the world but still we can't know. It can be raining 50 miles from me and be bright sunny here...or the other way around. So we have to learn and accept that we don't know..only someone there can know.

It is also that way when we think of how we heal from harm or sorrow. We can't really know what is happening in the other persons place. We don't know the pain or the point of their sorrow. We can recall how such an experience washed over us personally. But it is personal. And yet it is also universal. Because we are all human and children of God.

My Daddy would say, "All people good or bad are just the same when happy or sad." (M.L. Giltz)
This seems to ring more truthfully every day. We can at least know what the other experiences by being with them. We won't know their situation where they are... but they can know we are with them... sharring their joy or sorrow.

But in it all we recognize that we are not alone. We all hold up our part of the sky and we all have our feet on the same earth. Blessings all

God abides
Bobbie Giltz McGarey