On long hauls like this one we “boondock” in Wal Mart parking lots to save the time and energy it takes to get hooked up at an RV park or campground. It’s kind of weird, but when all the shades are closed, it really doesn’t matter to me where we lay unconscious during the twilight hours. Brian did, however, have an amusing revelation one morning while showering, “Hey, I’m naked in Wal Mart parking lot!!” It’s best not to think too deeply about it…
We found our way to Dallas where we stayed at a very nice RV resort on Lake Grapevine. The summer drought had taken a toll on the lake so fishing wasn’t what we’d hoped BUT the Dormadys were Dallas’ biggest attraction.
Ben, Marcus/Breck, Jack, Quinten/McKenna (I think)
Mike, Lisa, Quinton, Marcus, Breck and McKenna were finally settled into their new home after leaving Poplar Bluff last summer. Lisa held me together on more than one occasion during our “pulling away from Poplar Bluff” days. She inspires me. It was great to see them happy in their new life, especially with their new church, Gateway. We enjoyed every minute we got to spend with them and have already planned to see them again in December.
Moseying a bit further south we drove our house to my sister’s house located in the gorgeous hill country of Georgetown Texas. She lives there with her husband, Larry, and four kids in a beautiful Tuscan villa style house that Larry designed and built. Jenni may be my “baby” sister but she is wise beyond her years and I’ve followed her lead on many issues including home schooling. She home schools 13 year old Alexandria, 11 year old Nathanael, and 8 year old twins, Micah and Elijah, and makes it look easy – but that’s Jenni. She’s brilliant. We have a lot in common, the most special bond though is our faith in Christ. Visiting Jenni’s family always feels like a retreat and this trip was no exception.
Alex, Jenni, Brian, Nathanael, Larry, Micah, Ben, Elijah and Jack
When we’re together, we laugh and talk, we relax and have fun. And the kids! We hardly saw them once they were cut loose from school to play. They ran wild around the yard playing cowboys and Indians, hunting for treasure and lizards and snakes.
Micah, Jack, Elijah, Nathanael & Ben
When they weren’t playing under the big Texas sky they played in the RV, having commandeered it as their fort. With nine special days worth of fun well spent we pulled away from Georgetown and headed to my old stompin’ grounds – Houston.
In the middle of the Ginormous sprawl of Houston lies a quaint RV park, complete with fishing pond and swimming pool, just four miles from Westbury Baptist Church where I was scheduled to do a concert. While there we were fortunate to catch up with old Poplar Bluff friends, Eric and Carol Luecke and two of their kids, John Carl and James, as we all played hooky one day to hang out at the campsite.
James, Jack, John Carl, Eric & Ben
My “spiritual mom,” MaryAnn Parker, lives in Houston. MaryAnn had eternity in her sights when she befriended me all those years ago, making sure our friendship soared beyond this earthly plane. She told me about Jesus, she told me Truth. I gave my life to Jesus while walking on the beach in South Padre Island, near the club where my band played in the evenings. This was in 1987. I didn’t know how to “do it” or “what to say.” I just traded my life in: I gave God mine and He gave me His. It was so simple and seemed too good to be true. But true it was and I knew in that instant that I was not the same and would never be. What a mighty warrior MaryAnn is and I am deeply grateful for our friendship. Today she is waging a battle against cancer, how severe it is I don’t exactly know, because she doesn’t let it show. She is “unaffected” it seems because she holds such a grasp of the big picture. She is SO not of this world and will lead a very extensive trail of souls in her wake to the Presence of Almighty God when all of our time here is fully spent. I’ll be there! Jenni will be there…and the roll goes on and on.
The concert was a lot of fun. It was refreshing to spend time with the friends who came to see us: Pat Hunt, Jeremiah Jordan, Pat Fleming, Leann LaRocca, Stan and Jan, Steve and Sherry Adell, MaryAnn, Ruby Chapman, Keith and Ray Parker, Pierre DuBois, the Lueckes and many more. I appreciate the help of Kyle Damron and Keith Haggett in making the concert happen.