Thursday, March 27, 2008

Watering the enemy


How many of you would try to save a friend knowing it might result in your own death?

Probably some of you would.

How many of you would try to save the life of an enemy knowing it might result in your own death?

Probably very few, if any, of you would take that risk.

Yet, that is exactly what Richard Rowland Kirkland did during the Battle of Fredericksburg. Both who he is and what he did are worth learning about.

Born in August 1843, he was the fifth son of Mary and John Kirkland. They lived in the rural community of Flat Rock in the Kershaw District, South Carolina.

A friend described him as a slender, but well-proportioned muscular man at 5'8", who weighed about 150 pounds. His photograph reveals a handsome young man with a mustache.

A good marksman, Kirkland excelled in riding a horse. His war letters reflect a religious young man of moderate education typical of the thousands of young men who went to war in 1861.

Despite his youth, Kirkland was eager to fight for his country. He enlisted before his older brothers and friends in Company E, 2nd South Carolina. After a year of service as a private, he switched to Company G to be with his friends and was soon promoted to sergeant.

By December of 1862, Kirkland had become a combat veteran, having seen action at 1st Manassas, Savage Station, Maryland Heights and Antietam. He had also witnessed the death of several of his best friends.

During the Battle of Fredericksburg on Dec. 13, 1862, Kirkland's unit formed behind the Stone Wall at the base of Marye's Heights and helped slaughter the Union attackers. After a day of severe fighting, the scene shifted from severe fighting to tremendous suffering.

After dark on the 13th, doctors and soldiers began caring for the injured. The walking wounded made their way to the rear while those with disabling wounds remained on the field.

Daylight on the 14th revealed a ghastly scene to the Confederates behind the Stone Wall. About 8,000 Union soldiers had been shot in front of the wall and many of them remained where they had fallen. As hours went by without food, water or medical treatment, their suffering increased.

Nearby soldiers from both sides listened to the painful cries and pleas for help. While the suffering emotionally moved many, none dared face almost certain death to provide help.

At some point in the day, Kirkland could no longer bear listening to the pleas, so he walked over to the home of Martha Stevens. He went upstairs and told General Joseph Kershaw, his brigade commander, that he would like to try and help the wounded Union soldiers.

The surprised general at first refused the request, but he later relented.

Kirkland gathered all the canteens he could carry and filled them at the near by water well. Then, at extreme risk to himself, he ventured out to help the Federal soldiers. He carried water and warm clothing to the suffering Federal soldiers.

Kershaw anxiously watched Kirkland for hours on his errand of mercy, Christ-like mercy.

Kirkland went on to fight at Chancellorsville and Gettysburg. On Sept. 20, 1863, during the Battle of Chickamauga, Kirkland and two buddies got out in front as they charged up Snodgrass Hill.

Realizing their predicament, they turned to rejoin their unit. Kirkland lingered for a fatal moment to fire one more shot and was mortally wounded. His final words were, "Tell my pa, I died right."

His body was returned home for burial. Years later, a friend visited his grave and described the location as "one of the most sequestered, unfrequented, and inaccessible spots I ever saw."

In 1909, his remains were moved to Quaker Cemetery in Camden just a few paces from the grave of Gen. Kershaw.

In 1965, the magnificent statue sculpted by the famous artist Felix DeWeldon was unveiled in front of the Stone Wall in Fredericksburg where he had performed his humanitarian acts.

At a time we sorely need heroes, this young Southern boy set an admirable example of concern for his fellow human beings and extreme courage.

During chapel on Tuesday, my supervisor told us about his visit to some of the places in our town and how he came upon the statue of Richard Kirkland. He then told us the story behind the statue.

Kirkland is such an example to glean from. All that he did was for the enemy. Christians ought to be taking the Living water out the enemy as well, even under enemy fire. I'm talking to myself here. There have been times where I could have shared the Gospel, but let that human pride get in the way.

Matt. 5:44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;

I know that I have failed in that area more than one. This man's bravery is a challenge to my life. Is he a challenge to yours?

Monday, March 24, 2008

Well, I had a wonderful, relaxing weekend! Did a little shopping, spring cleaning, and visiting with friends. It was great. I went out shopping today after donating a couple boxes of stuff to the Goodwill. I was thrilled to find a new winter jacket for $9 (originally $75). As I was on the hunt for cheap Easter candy to restock my candy basket at school for my students, I came across these ducks resting in the Target parking lot (pun not intended!). I thought it was pretty interesting.

Friday, March 21, 2008

This has been an interesting week. This was one morning that I could sleep in and my eyes popped open at 8 am.

Monday morning, as I was talking with Sheila, Josh joins in. He then tells us about a mishap that happened to him Sunday night. He told us that he has changed into his basketball clothes (the guys play basketball after church) and that he had put his cell phone in his hoodie pocket. He used the restroom and when he flushed and turned around he heard a splash. He looked back just in time to see his cell phone go down the toilet! lol What a way to start the week!

Yesterday, my twin boy students walked into the classroom carrying a couple of things. One had some cupcakes and the other had some flowers. How sweet!

Since I didn't have vase, I had to use a water bottle that was still sitting on my desk. :)

I am going to enjoy having a couple days off. I got all of my grading caught up, entered the grades on the computer program we use, turned them in (end of the 3rd quarter), already finished next week's lesson plans, posted my homework on the web, and turned in honor roll names. And, I was even able to leave early and I was able to get my cleaning job done early as well. I like being able to get things done.

For Thursday

Col. 3:1-15

Seek to glorify God in your daily life

We are dead in Christ- taking God's experience and applying it to our life

Mortify your members- render them useless to those areas in v. 5

Wrath of God- judgment

The image of Christ is not one of a "softie" but one who is compassionate, wrathful and yet holy

Pointing at the Gnostics in v. 11

Humility is looking at Jesus and knowing who He is and then looking at ourselves and knowing what we really are

Charity is love in action

Let the peace of God happen

There's always a time to be thankful: every minute of every day

Wednesday, March 19, 2008


(photo courtesy of first glance I thought this was some sort of nail dryer, but it's actually a piano! Only 14 have been made and it costs $110,000. I think I'd rather buy a house over that piano.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Timed Tuesday: 10 minutes

Ok, so the hardest thing to decide on is the topic. Writing itself doesn't seem to be the difficult part.

I think I am going to write about the Rock.

This week in Bible class, we are talking about making wise decisions and referenced back to Matt. 7 where Jesus compares the wise and foolish man. In chapel this morning, Bro. Perry used this same reference. In choir, we have been singing about Jesus being our rock.

A rock is something hard, solid, steady, sure, and an excellent foundation. It stands strong in the time difficulties. Sand, on the other hand, shifts, moves, and is easily blown about. When a person builds a house, a rock-like foundation is best to build upon. The house will remain years on down the road. If built on sand, the house will be leaning after a few years.

Our lives are like the house. If we build on the things of this world, we soon will be ruined. Money, possessions, beauty all shift easily like the sand. But, if you build your life on Jesus Christ, He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. He does not change and you will be able to weather the storms that may come.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Amusing Monday post: The Llama Song

When Bro. Ben came by on Wednesday to work on my car, he had his daughter Abbie with him. She kept humming this little tune and then told me to look it up on Youtube. So, I did.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Mawage…the Sky is Falling!

Mawage…the Sky is Falling!

Well, this proved to be a rather eventful week. ODACS went well and I was able to be present for my students when they had to compete. My judging duties were reasonable and not bad at all. I did miss our teachers' meeting though, because of some miscommunication. My supervisor razzed me all day because of it (my first time missing a meeting this school year). So, I razzed him back. :)

I wanted to enjoy my "recoup" day (we did not have school on Wednesday), but I had to get my car fixed. The radiator sprung a leak. Figures. Bro. Ben (my Sunday school teacher) came by to install a new one for me. I'm very thankful for that.

Thursday was…interesting. My girls had been planning a wedding for Duckellina and Wally (stuffed animals) for nearly a week. If you ever need a wedding planned in a hurry, ask my girls! Lol .They actually wanted it next week, but with the chance of rain, they moved it up to Thursday during recess. I couldn't help but laugh at the situation. One of the girls officiated the wedding and even had a little notebook to read from. She addressed the groom, and then the bride, but the bride seemed a bit gruff in her answers.

Officiator: Duckellina…

Bride: WHAT!

Officiator: Do you take Wally to be your wonderfully wedded husband:

Bride: Yeah, sure, whatever.

These kids are funny!

Another girl was rounding up the "ring barriers," told everyone it was time for the recital (reception), and someone else said braidsmaids. Whew!

The Impressive Clergyman: Mawage. Mawage is wot bwings us togeder tooday. Mawage, that bwessed awangment, that dweam wifin a dweam...

[cut to Westley, Inigo, and Fezzik]

The Impressive Clergyman: And wuv, tru wuv, will fowow you foweva...

[cut to the trio again]

The Impressive Clergyman: So tweasure your wuv.

Prince Humperdinck: Skip to the end.

The Impressive Clergyman: Have you the wing?

[cut to the trio once more]

The Impressive Clergyman: ...and do you,Pwincess Buwwercup...

Prince Humperdinck: Man and wife. Say man and wife.

The Impressive Clergyman: Man an' wife.

After the 2 1/2 minute wedding, reception, and honeymoon, I went to sit down and continued grading papers. The next thing I knew, WHAM! Something hit the back of my head. I was a little dazed, but realized I had been hit with a decent sized rock. After it ricocheted off of my head, it nearly hit one of my students. All of my kids were playing in front of me and there was no way that they could have done that from their direction. I got up and was the high school PE class on the soccer field. I spoke with the teacher, but none of those boys 'fessed up to what they had done. My head is still tender from that.

Well, now that I have brought up the Princess Bride and Chicken Little, I'm off to bed. :)

Saturday, March 08, 2008

The Marks of a True Friend

The Marks of a True Friend
Proverbs 17:17
by Adrian Rogers
Did you know that the deepest need of the human heart is for intimacy? That's just another way of saying friendship. Now, I'm not talking about casual acquaintances or false friends, but true friends. Let me give you three marks of a true friend.
How To Know a True Friend
A true friend sharpens. He will make you a sharper person, a better person. Proverbs 27:17 says, "Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend." A true friendship will put an edge on your life. False friends dull your life, blunt your influence, and drag you down. Anybody who makes it easier for you to do wrong is not a true friend. One of the true tests of any friendship is asking yourself, "Am I a better person for having known this person?"
A true friend sticks. A true friend is steadfast. We read in Proverbs 17:17: "A friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born for adversity." If you want to see who your real friends are, just make a mistake and see whether or not they leave you.
Life is like a ship. Some people get on and off board very easily. Some will stay on board as long as everything is sailing smoothly; but let the rough weather come, and they will abandon the ship. A true friend is the one who will stick with you.
A true friend stabs. You say, "I don't want to be stabbed." Well, listen to Proverbs 27:6: "Faithful are the wounds of a friend, but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful." A friend who really loves you will wound you if it's necessary. That is, he will tell you the truth and won't give you hypocritical kisses when he needs to do a little spiritual surgery on you. Flattery is not true friendship. A true friend cares enough to confront. I'm so grateful that throughout my life I've had those who would put their arms around my shoulders and help me when I’ve done wrong.
How to Be a True Friend
True friends are built. You don’t make them overnight. Friendships are not toadstools; they are oak trees. Jesus said, "…Love one another, as I have loved you" (John 15:12). Now, that's the principle, but let me give you five secrets that come from it. If you will practice these, you will make you a great friend.
Accept. The Bible says in Ephesians 1:6 that God has "made us accepted in the beloved." We all want people to accept us. Jesus accepted the disciples. He said, "Ye have not chosen Me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you…" (John 15:16) Jesus did not accept the disciples because they were perfect but because they needed Him.
Acknowledge. Recognize people. Give them your full heart and attention. When you talk to people, listen to them also. Look them in the eye. Understand that people are important. They're a soul for whom Christ died. When we acknowledge others, we’re saying, "You're important to me. I acknowledge your presence and your importance."
Appreciate. I got an e-mail from my son recently. It brought tears to my eyes because he said, "Dad, I'm just so grateful for the heritage that I have. Thank you." I could live six months on that. It didn't take him but a few minutes to write that little message, but it meant so much to me. Folks, you're lying if you say you don't want to be appreciated. Tell your husband, your wife, your children, or your friends that they are appreciated.
Affirm. Appreciation is for what people do; affirmation is for who people are. The Lord Jesus affirmed His disciples over and over again. It doesn’t mean you approve of everything a person does when you affirm them. The Bible is full of affirmations, and yet it acknowledges the fact that we’re sinners and that we fail. But affirmation is important.
Assure. Assure them that you understand. We all want empathy. The apostle Paul said in Romans 12:15: "Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep." Find a way to let people know that you're sensitive to what they’re up against, what they feel, what they're going through. Assure them that you’re there, and that, to your limited ability, you understand or you’re trying to understand what they’re going through.
True friendship is costly. It’s not easy to maintain a friendship. Remember John 15:13: "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." And Proverbs 17:17 says, "A friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born for adversity." You must be willing to pay the price. But finding a true friend and being one in return is one of the best investments you can ever make.
Saturday, April 30, 2005

Friday, March 07, 2008

As I was just dozing off last night, my phone startled me awake. It was my mom calling at 10:30 pm. She wanted to know how I was doing and if I had heard from my sister recently. I hadn't heard from my sister since last weekend. She doctor visit on Monday yielded no results...again. They want to keep her as a lab rat still. Mom told me that Nessa's phone had been stolen from the gym. What a bummer. That thing is usually glued to her ear.
Then, mom lat me know the real reason why she was calling me (well, not exactly in those words, though). My parents have been having a difficult time relationship wise. It grieves me greatly knowing that. My dad kicked my brother out of the house again and he stayed with my sister at her apartment for week (during his spring break) and then this last week he was at a friend's house so he could get to school. Mom told me that she is now staying with Nessa and will be looking for an apartment for herself and my brother.
Please pray that God will work a miracle in my family's relations. I know He can change their hearts.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

I felt worse yesterday than I did on Tuesday, but now I am feeling pretty well. I'm thankful for that. I don't know why, but today feels like Friday instead of Thursday.

Well, the girls in my class had their first "big issue" today. I have one girl who puts on the martyr complex and says that no one likes her (and this is being said as she separates herself from the group). I noticed this yesterday during lunch. All of my students went to lunch and sat at the same table (we get three tables to sit at during lunch). Just as I finished up making a comment about that to another teacher, this girl gets up and moves two tables away, all by herself. I talked to her for a few minutes only to hear that "no one likes me" complaint. I reminded her of Prov. 18:24. She still chose to sit by herself.

Then, at the end of recess, she waited to be the last in line and lagged the whole way in. When we got to the classroom, I dismissed the boys to wait at the end of the hall (we were getting ready for choir) and spoke to the girls. Two were in tears by the end of the discussion. I told them to have a group hug (and one thought I was joking) and then dismissed them to head down to choir. The two with tear-streaked faces ran for the tissue box and then hugged again.

My aim as a teacher here is not just to teach the academics, but the Biblical principles to live a successful Christian life. I don't claim to be the perfect example, but these kids are my responsibility.

On a humorous note, during bathroom break, one of my boys was walking to get in line (incorrectly, I might add) and he walked right into the wall. I couldn't help but giggle. :)

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

I woke up this morning feeling pretty well, and then after chapel, I felt like I had been run over by a Mack Truck.
Semi Truck 2

I think I may be getting the flu. :( I even had to send three kids home sick today and I had one not come to school. Well, I'll just tough it out. I've already finished my lesson plans for next week, so perhaps I'll be able to get a nap before church tomorrow.

Oh, it is also National Grammar Day today!

Saturday, March 01, 2008

What a day!

Well, today has been very interesting. Saturdays are my only day to sleep in during the week and when I went to bed last night, I was determined to sleep in. The only thing is, my phone rang a little after nine (well, that was sleeping in since I get up at six the rest of the week). My friend Karyn calls me and asks if I can take her girls to a birthday party and to deliver the cake so she can go to see a doctor (ends up being an infection in her lymph nodes). I tell her I can. At this point, I still have to clean the college building. So I get up and and do that with a few minutes to spare to get ready. So, my car is loaded up with the beautiful Disney Princess cake that Karyn made, the gift, and the car seats for the girls (pre-school age). I'm given my directions and they seem fairly easy to follow. Now, mind you, I am not from this area and I don't venture out to unfamiliar territory. So, off we go. I make it to the exit I need, make a left and travel for miles down a beautiful country road that winds and bends, all at the posted 55mph. I enjoyed that. Then, it tees off and I make a right. Hmm. That was a stop sign, not a stoplight. That's not in my directions. Then I proceed several more miles and end up in Bowling Green. Oh boy. I turn around and back-track. Then, of all things, I run out of gas. As I'm coasting, I know that all the gas stations were at the freeway exit, which was still about 5 miles away. Then, as my slows, there is a small, old country store with old fashioned pumps. I was able to coast in , but didn't make it to the pump. A couple of guys helped me by pushing the car to the pump. I know that God was in that. :)

Well, we get back to the freeway and try for the next exit. That was 8 miles away. Well, we turned around headed back home. That was almost 2 hours of diving and we never reached our destination. Well, I brought the girls back to my house. The adventure did not end there. One of my roommates was home and had some craft stuff that the girls could. They had ate a popsicle outside. They played with the core ball thing and then all of a sudden, its out in the road. This ball went across 6 lanes of traffic without incident! Oh, we were laughing so hard. Then my roommates went to retrieve the ball. Then Karyn comes by and visits with us. She lets me know that the directions were wrong. I was supposed to turn right and then left. I had the right exit.

Oh, what a day! I'm exhausted.