Matters Of The Heart

When we hear the word “Heart” we think of the blood pump in each of our bodies, we think of a person’s character or life; we even think of spiritual matters, and hear phrases like “Give your heart to Christ”; and I have used that one a few times.  By that we mean, “Give of your whole being, and self to Christ; leaving nothing out.”
Well the heart is a major organ within our body, and it is amazing what doctors can do for our hearts in this day and time.  We need to realize though that doctors cannot heal; that there is only One Healer and His name is Jesus Christ the Son of the Living God.
The reason I bring this “Matters of the Heart” up is that my wife Madge and I have just recently had doctors work on our hearts.  Back on 2007 or ’08 my wife was diagnosed with an anyerism of her aorta in her heart.  It was not large enough for them to do surgery, so waited until it grew large enough to do it.  They did the surgery on September 21, 2010, and by the grace and healing power of God she came through it miraculously.
In February of this year (2011) I was scheduled for a stress test by my cardiologists order.  As far as I knew there was nothing wrong; had no chest pains, if I did too much at one time I needed to take a rest, thinking it was due to being physically out of shape.  The February appointment was postponed due to bad weather; until April 05.  I took the stress test and they found what they called “abnormalities” and wanted to do an angiogram.
On Monday April 18 I went in to the hospital for the angiogram, and they ended up putting four stents in me, and never finished; I was to return the following Monday (April 25) to get another stent for another artery of my heart. Due to these surgical procedures I spent a total of two nights in the hospital.
I am thankful to the Lord for His watch and care, and recovery of these things.  He is wonderful, powerful, and gracious and merciful.  To Him be all the praise.
I believe that I am feeling much better, though it is yet to be seen when I am able to get out and become more physically active again.
I appreciate all who have prayed for my wife and I, and thank you very much.  Where would we be without you all.  Thanks also to the great doctors and nurses who provided the physical care and knew how to use the technology available.
Thanks and praise be to the One who is Lord of all.
-Tim A. Blankenship

It’s Time Again

There is a thing that seems to constantly sneak up on you. Most of you can probably figure out what I am talking about by the title. It’s Time Again… that the sun comes up a little later of the morning. It’s Time Again… that the sun sets a little earlier in the evening. It’s Time Again… for a whole lot of things.
Can you believe that children are preparing for returning to school? When I was a kid I hated School and loved the Summer break. My problem was that the nine months of School lasted for nine years, and Summer break only for three days. However, It is that time again that Schools will be opening their doors to millions of School children; in the School for which I drive a School bus; that will only be in the 15 hundreds plus range.
Last year at this time I was really wondering if I would be driving anymore due to my high blood pressure, but I did, though I had problems with it a little later and was suspended from driving for two weeks because of it. I failed my physical provided by the School. I then went to my Physician and they worked with me, got my blood pressure down to an acceptable level, approved me for 3 months, but then, I guess it was not controlled.
Now, this year, on the eighth of August I went to the Physical provided by the School and my blood pressure was in the normal range, and I passed. Thank the Lord. For the past six months or so, when I check my BP it has been good, and for that I am grateful.
I guess I enjoy driving 50 or so screaming kids to and from School or something. I enjoy the people I work with. The drivers, the mechanics, and administration are all like a part of a family, and it seems that all are treated with great respect. School has not even started yet, and we have eight Sub drivers. At the end of the School year we only had one. The School gave the drivers a little pay raise, and every little bit helps. Thank YOU Lord.
It’s Time Again… at least about time; for the people on the highways to keep their eyes and ears open for the sight of those big yellow monsters, called School buses, and the little ones who will be riding them.
-Tim A. Blankenship

Another Blessing from God

In a couple of the past post, as a matter of fact the last two; I may have seemed a bit discouraged. I was. Discouragement is a horrible thing, but one thing I can say about it is that when you get lifted out – you really know it.

There have been a really great event of news that has not gotten out a long ways, and that is Madge and I are going to be grandparents once again. I won’t say which of our kids yet, but it is supposed to be due in early July. Used to you didn’t even know you were expecting that quick, but technology has a way.

I also returned to the doctor today to see about my BP, and surprise of surprise, he released me to return to driving the School Bus. That tickled my goat. That is a good thing. Most adults would not think of another adult being glad to get back to driving a School Bus. People in their right mind wouldn’t be driving a School Bus; or so I have heard and as we bus drivers often kid around about. I drove the evening route today, and was glad to be back, and the other drivers were glad to see me back.

One of the things that helps me enjoy driving the Bus is the other drivers, the supervisor, and mechanics, and the School Administration and Board. Cassville School District is a pleasure to drive for. They pay the drivers the best of any School District in the State of Missouri, provide health insurance, sick days, get 2 personal days per school year (paid), and paid holidays. Not many School Districts provide such a good package. The best thing is the people I work with. Mostly a lot of fun to be around.

I am thankful to be back to driving the bus again, and I pray God will use me to be a faithful witness for His glory, and will bless the Carr Lane Baptist Church greatly too. I want to express a word of thanks to all who prayed for me these past two weeks. God has answered and heard you. Bless the holy name of Jesus, Son of the Living God, and who is God incarnate.

Update – Autumn

This is just to update all who are interested concerning my blood pressure and such. I was not given permission to return to driving the school bus. The blood pressure was down at home, but back up when I went to the doctors office. Because of that he told me to come back “Next Monday” – that will be on the 19th, and check it again.
I went off to Springfield yesterday, ie., Friday Nov. 16, and forgot to take some of my meds with me so now I may be back where I was a week ago.
I now have an appointment set with a cardiologist for December 5th, however if I have no job driving the school bus I have no insurance. If I have no insurance I will not be going to the cardiologist. Things like that are too expensive. I have a pretty strong heart. The only one who can stop is my Creator, God and Savior. Please pray for my family and me.
O, Lord, I am in YOUR hands. YOU are the Great Physician.

The Autumn of the Year

I just looked in the MIRRIAM/WEBSTER DICTIONARY to make sure I was spelling the word “Autumn” correctly. I was, and noticed the definition was, “The season between Summer and Winter.” That is a correct definition.
I must admit Autumn or Fall is not my favorite season of the year. It has its beauties, with the changing of the leaves on the trees, especially here in the State of Missouri; the hills are full of color. It is amazing how our God paints such a beautiful picture even in the picture of aging and dying. Therein lies the reason Autumn is not my favorite time of year. I appears as death and dying. It is not that I fear dying or death, because I know where I am spending eternity, and that is with my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
One of the things I don’t like about it is the cold. I like being warm, and even being hot is not as hard to bear. I can cool down much easier and in a more enjoyable fashion, than by trying to get warm. When it turns cold, I am never warm; that is not to say that I am freezing or anything like that. The cold just gets in me, and I am not warm until Spring comes around again.
I am not liking this Fall especially. I went to the doctor yesterday, and my blood pressure was way high, and he grounded me/suspended me from driving the School Bus. It is for an indefinite period. I am hopeing that when I go back to see him on Monday he can renew my health certificate and I can get back to driving. I am appreciative of a Supervisor at the School who is willing to work with me, give me a medical leave, keep my route for me, and get paid while I am off too. I have twenty days of sick leave, so that should be taken care of. One thing the doctor told me was that he was going to get me an appointment with a cardiologist. I don’t know when that will be yet.
If things don’t work out with driving, then, I know the Lord has something greater in mind. This Fall/Autumn is the season of color, and a reminder that life on this earth is not forever. God is in control of life and that is what makes the whole year, and the four seasons so interesting. Life might be a little boring if every day was the same, and every season of the years, as well as the seasons of life.
My wife and I went to the Missouri Baptist Convention the week of October 29-31 at the Tan-Tara Resort on the Lake of the Ozarks. It is a beautiful location, the weather was great, and some events of the Convention were disappointing; but the preaching was great, and the singing was fantastic. God is good.

More Summer Rambling

Well, it appears that I will be driving the School Bus anyway. I am thankful for that. I went to the doctor yesterday, and we got me approved for a three month period, and I will need to go in for periodic BP checks.

That takes a big gorilla off my back. That is an extra income which also provides our health insurance. The Lord, of course, is our greatest provider and means of our sustenance. He does, however, call us to our work, and to do it as unto Him. I am just thankful for all His provision of grace and mercy.

It just seems that a whole load of pressure has been lifted off my back. That alone does not help a persons BP. I appear to people as being mild mannered, easy going, and I have had people to tell me that they are surprised that someone with my demeanor could have high BP. The reason for that may be that I keep things in, rather than exploding. I want to say with that, that there are times I release them, by my writing in my journal. I have also found blogging a release and renewing as well.

The school I drive for will begin on August 16. That is next Thursday. In the hottest time of Summer. Our temps here in Southwest Missouri have been at or near the century mark. Air conditioning sure feels good when it is like this.

Last night our son Timothy, his wife Sarah, and their kids Naomi, and Josiah were over, and we barbecued a couple of t-bone steaks and burgers. Man, was that good stuff. I told you this was more Summer rambling.

Summer Ramblings

Summer is nearing an end, at least as far as School vacation is concerned. The teachers and administrators are gathered at the School during the week days getting things all situated and ready to go, and they have had the physicals for all who need them; like the Bus Drivers, and there are others,

I went for mine on Tuesday, July 31, and failed my physical. I have a problem with my blood pressure being too high. It was high when I went in for my physical. The doctors have ran test on me, even did MRI’s and MRA’s (Maybe the same, I don’t know), they have done stress test and found nothing causing it. These have all been prior to July 31 of this year.

It really has me perplexed. I take three medications for blood pressure, but it seems they do no good. I feel pretty good with the exception of when I get discouraged, or depressed concerning these matters. I know blood pressure is a life or death matter, but then, I see every day as a blessing from God, and know that whether I live or whether I die it is of the Lord.

Some have told me I should get disability for my blood pressure, but I really don’t think I could get it and remain a pastor; and I don’t think that is what God would have me do. Preaching and pastoring is what God has called me to do, and I will probably die doing that.

This may sound gruesome to some, but my prayer to the Lord, concerning my death is that I would die in one of three or four ways. The first one being to die while preaching His Word in the pulpit. The second, to die on my knees while in prayer. The third, to die while a soul I have dealt with is praying to Jesus for salvation; and the fourth, to just die while I am asleep. I see no problem in asking my Lord and Savior for this. I know that I have no say over the time or place, but those are my requests.

I am ready and anxious to meet my Savior face to face. There are many unredeemed here that I have failed to tell about Jesus, His death on the cross taking the judgment of sin that was mine/ours, being rejected by His Father because He had become the very thing that He despised, and took all the wrath for all sin. Jesus was buried carrying all our sins away, and leaving them in the depths of the ocean and cast as far away as East is from West. On the third day He rose from the grave for our justification (right with God) by God’s declaration; and He lives forever seated at the right hand of God the Father.

If the Lord allows me to continue to drive the School Bus, that will be great, if not maybe I can spend more time with my church people. I would certainly not mind that at all.