Tired Feet, Refreshed by Cold Tidewater

FOOTWASHING, IN COLD TIDEWATER, CAN BE VERY REFRESHING

Dr. James J. S. Johnson

Jesus saith to him [i.e., Peter], He that is washed needs not, except to wash his feet, but is clean every whit; and ye are clean, but not all.   (John 13:10)

Iona-MartyrsBay-beach-wideangle

After a lot of hiking along Martyrs Bay, on Iona island (19th July AD2019), a small isle in Scotland’s Inner Hebrides, I refreshed my feet with a good foot-soaking (for about 5 minutes — as long as I could tolerate the cold!), in the frigid shore-waters of the Iona’s shore.  Hence this limerick, by which to remember that very cool experience:

AFTER HOURS OF HIKING, SOAK YOUR FEET IN THE FRIGID SHORE-WATERS OF IONA SOUND

Hiking for hours, on Scottish ground,

Fatigued feet trek, toward Iona’s Sound;

Footgear off — pants cuffs rolled,

Step in sea-water — c-c-cold!

“Freezing” tired feet, in Iona’s Sound!

Iona-MartyrsBay-shoreline


 

Celebrating her 105th Birthday!

Celebrating her 105th Birthday!

Dr. James J. S. Johnson

Lord, thou hast been our dwelling place in all generations.  …  The days of our years are 70 years, and if by reason of strength they be 80 years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away.  …  So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.   (Psalm 90:1, 10, 12)

Yesterday my mother-in-law celebrated her 105th birthday — WOW!  God has blessed her with years well beyond the foreseeable expectancies mentioned within Psalm 90.

EvelynCoulter-105.tiara-at-table

Here (with edits to cure typos) is the poem that I wrote and presented for the occasion:

LOOKING BACK ON A LONG JOURNEY

12-9-AD2018

Life was never a bowl of roses, Mom has seen her share of ills;

But life has balanced out for her, with family joys and thrills;

She’s lived a long, long time, and she’s experienced lots;

Eaten squirrel and catfish —  at church she taught the tots;

The sick she’s often fed with meals, she knows her pans and pots;

“Never quit” she role-models  —  she’s from the sturdy Scots.

Mom’s lived through many decades, sometimes tough and sometimes nice;

She raised 2 children years ago, in time she married twice.

Many folks are blessed by her – boys, girls, ladies, men;

Her grandkids number 5, now her great-grands number 10.

A busy-bee, she sold for Stanley, winning many trips,

Traveling by car and airplanes, twice inside cruise ships.*

God has blessed her many times, the Spanish Flu she did survive;

And when she reached the century mark – she was still alive . . . !

Today we celebrate Evelyn’s birth, . . . she’s now 105 ! ! !

[*NOTE Besides most of the USA’s “Lower 48” states, Alaska and Hawaii, Mom visited Austria, Canada, Denmark, England, France, Germany, Netherlands, Italy, Iceland (!), Ireland, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Monaco, Mexico, Norway (land of some of her ancestors), Sweden, Scotland (land of many of her ancestors), Switzerland (land of other ancestors), etc.]   Some say Mom looks like the Queen of England in the picture below!

Mom-at-105.with-SAJ-JJSJ

As long as I have known her (>40 years), Mom has been proud of being a Baptist and a Texan.  Q:  “Mom, if you weren’t a Texan, what would you be?” A: “Ashamed.”  [Maybe I made that last part up, but she really is patriotic about being a lifelong Texan].  As a lifelong Baptist she has eaten a lot of fried chicken and also has abstained from drinking alcoholic beverages.  However, she recalls, sicknesses (when she was young) were often treated with blackberry wine that her mother made — and “it was good wine!”  Born one of 12 children, Mom was routinely the sickliest of the surviving children, yet she has outlived all of her siblings.  (The Piney Woods of East Texas are a good place for growing timber, farming, ranching, producing steel, and even for growing blackberries.)

For more on Mom’s family history (especially about God’s providence in how the Swiss Glattfelder lineage married into the Scottish Abernethy/Abernathy lineage), see my article “From Germany’s Rhine to the East Texas Pine:  How an Immigrating Line of High German-speaking Glattfelders Stretched to East Texas’ Piney Woods”, JOURNAL OF THE GERMAN-TEXAN HERITAGE SOCIETY, 28(3):246-254 (fall 2005).


 

 

O Edinburgh (Remembering the Great Forthside Port)

I will speak of thy testimonies also before kings, and will not be ashamed.  (Psalm 119:46)

O Edinburgh (Remembering the Great Forthside Port)

Dr. James J. S. Johnson

O Edinburgh, great Forthside port,
Old city, where Knox preached in court;
Just to walk your Royal Mile,
Warms my heart, makes me smile –
O Edinburgh, of famed kirk and fort.

JOHN KNOX (St. Giles Kirk statue): Electric Scotland photo credit

COMMENTARY: Unforgettable – visiting Edinburgh’s Royal Mile during the summer of AD2002.  That memorable trip (which trip included the privilege of meeting historian-scholar Dr. Bill Cooper face-to-face!) was part of a tour bus-facilitated excursion that was part of a cruise, aboard the NORWEGIAN DREAM, with my wife and mother-in-law.  The great Calvinist/Presbyterian Reformer, John Knox, faithfully preached the Scriptures in St. Giles Kirk (cathedral), during the AD1500s, and also repeatedly confronted Scotland’s Queen Mary with the Protestant Reformation’s truths.  Knox’s biogenetic descendants include Dr. John Witherspoon, who signed the U.S. Declaration of Independence and who also taught Biblical Hebrew to John Madison, the chief author of the U.S. Constitution and Bill or Rights (and 4th U.S. president).

EdinburghCastle-MustSeePlaces.Com-photo


PHOTO CREDITTS: St. Giles Kirk: Pinterest;  John Knox statue at St. Giles Kirk: Electric Scotland; Edinburgh Castle: MustSeePlaces.com