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'Down....But Not Out'
by Travis Wiginton
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I don't often have 'low times' but I did last Saturday.

Of course it was near 100 degrees, humidity was high and allergies were/are rampant here....plus La Moyne had a few rough days.
(The Lupus Dr. gave her an injection yesterday, so hopefully she'll 'turn a corner' soon)

Early last Sat. a.m. La Moyne and I walked across the street to visit our neighbors who were having a garage sale.
La Moyne didn't use her walker (nor wheelchair) and just leaned on me (and my cane).
She's learning the hard way that she can NOT walk without some type of sturdy 'aide'....
as her back literally 'quits' on her and the resulting pain is almost unbearable.

I guess you could say that we were both kinda 'down', so we tuned in to the Gaither's TV program that night.

It was the exactly the 'medicine' that we needed, along with the phone calls....
from each of our children.
Later our gr'son Jeremiah called to tell us that he had proposed to his girlfriend, Ashley....
and that she had accepted.

After the TV program, our little dog Cosmo and I took our evening walk.
We passed a neighbor's home where they had rec'd good news concerning her cancer and though a portion of her lung was removed, it has not spread to other areas.
Thank you for your prayers for Jan....please continue!

Another neighbor's daughter is making progress, but still faces more treatment for her cancer @ MD Anderson in Houston. Next door to them, is the home of a lady who is still adjusting to the death of her husband last year.

We then passed the home of a neighbor whose wife died a few months ago. I had the privilege of conducting her funeral and Ken seems to be doing as well as can be expected.

Life, death and illness are a part of Cherry Laurel Dr. as well as neighborhoods everywhere!

As a pastor I learned early on that you can:
'Walk down any street, knock on any door and find someone in that family who is hurting in some area of their life'.

Here are some notes that I wrote down during the Gaither Gospel Music Hour.

1) The program opened with 'The Love of God', a song that La Moyne sang as a teenager in her home church, First Baptist Church in Hobart, Oklahoma. It was also the song that she sang for Dr. Shelby Collier who was Choir Dir. for the International Choir @ Wayland Baptist University. When she finished singing, he offered her a full voice scholarship to Wayland and she attended there until our marriage in 1953.

This past Sunday my brother's son, Keith Edwin Wiginton (and his wife Sarah) accepted the call to become pastor of First Baptist Church, Hobart. We're thrilled for them (and for the church family) as we have such fond memories of the 8 months we spent there serving as their Interim Pastor.

2) Good Gospel Hymns minister Grace....
and remind us that God's Grace is Sufficient for EVERY need that we have.

In II Cor. 12:9 Paul tells us about 'a thorn in his flesh', but he did not specify 'what' it was so that we can apply it to 'whatever' we are going through....
and know that God's Grace will be sufficient.

The key is this: "God's Power is made perfect in our weakness" (whatever that may be)
God's Love is stronger than my weakness!

3) Here are the words to several songs that ministered to us that evening:

"Turn your eyes upon Jesus, look full in His wonderful face....
and the things of earth will grow strangely dim, in the light of His Glory and Grace"
Words and Music by Helen H. Lemmel (1922)

There's that word 'Grace' again and what a wonderful word (and gift) it is!

Andre Crouch (who had a home in Kona when we served there) wrote the words and music to "Through it All" ~
"Through it all, through it all, I've learned to trust in Jesus, I've learned to trust in God.
Through it all, through it all, I've learned to depend upon His Grace"

"God Will Take Care of You" (Words: Civilla D. Martin Music: W. Stillman Martin)
"Be not dismayed whate'er betide,
God will take care of you.
Beneath His wings of love abide,
God will take care of you.

God will take care of you,
through every day, o'er all the way...
He will take care of you,
God will take care of you.

Through days of toil when heart doth fail,
God will take care of you.
When dangers fierce your path assail,
God will take care of you.

All you may need He will provide!
God will take care of you.
Nothing you ask will be denied...
God will take care of you.

No matter what may be the test...
God will take care of you;
Lean, weary one, upon His breast,
God will take care of you"

After being ministered to by an Hour of Old Hymns on that 'semi-down' day...
my spirit was lifted, so I then was able to go to bed with joy!

Someone said, "Joy is a light that helps you find Faith, Hope and Love".

When Cosmo and I walked out into our backyard the next morning, the flowers were refreshed by the rain we had during the night. The sun had risen, the Crepe Myrtle and Four o'clocks were bright, so I thought of another song.
(You probably guessed that I'd have another favorite song, didn't you? :)

"This Is The Day That The Lord Has Made" (Words/Music: Les Garrett)
"This is the day, this is the day,
That the Lord has made, that the Lord has made.
I will rejoice, I will rejoice,
And be glad in it, and be glad in it.

This is the day that the Lord has made,
I will rejoice and be glad in it.
This is the day, This is the day,
That the Lord has made"

The purpose of this paper is not to magnify a 'down time'.
Everyone may encounter those at some time in their life.
The question is 'what we do with them'?

There is help on earth, but our greatest help is found in...
The Cross and how much Jesus loves us!

It is primarily about Him, but hymns help us keep our eyes on Jesus and The Cross. When Jesus went up on that Cross, Victory was...is...and shall be...ours for the claiming.

I regret that many of those hymns are no longer sung in some churches these days as the hymns that La Moyne and I learned when we were young, are the ones that minister to us NOW.

We've talked many times about how the writers of old 'had a way with words' and we feel that it was probably due to the fact that their quiet times had fewer diversions than now. TV (and many other things) can crowd out our quiet times if we don't guard that time with Him.

Galations 6:14:
"God forbid that I should glory save in the Cross of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ."

I Cor. 1:18:
"The preaching of the Cross is to them that perish foolishness, but unto we who are saved, it is the Power of God."

The Apostle Paul undoubtedly had some bad times (in and out of prison) but he said
"I have determined not to know anything among you... save Jesus Christ and Him crucified."

Yes, there is Victory past, present, future and Eternity, but the Victory is in Jesus Christ.

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