Pathways of Life...

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Fathers Forever Treasured....

Last week I was going through a bunch of old Sunday School lesson ideas that I had used for 33 years of teaching to mostly Middle School kiddoes and I came across a lesson that I used often and one that would 'go over really well with the kids' in helping them understand the differences and yet similarities of our earthly Daddy's and Heavenly Father. However for the last 10 years of my teaching kids in prison, age 10-20...I had to alter the wording because incarcerated kids most often have NEVER had the same image of a 'DADDY' as a regular church Sunday School class kiddo. I'm sure you understand that sad situation and fact.

In the past, I've had others to asked me to give them outline copies of the lesson idea, so when I found it in my 'pack-rat' cleaning excursion....I thought possibly someone reading the blog might like the idea and build up on it and add YOUR own even better words, to help others see our REAL DAD.


Earthly DADDY'S often don't even realize it but THEY are actually so much Like our Heavenly Father...God... Abba (His name--explain).

There are FOUR different ways or things that Daddy's down here on earth have in common with OUR Father God in Heaven.


#1....Daddy's LOVE to hear their kids say, 'I LOVE YOU, DADDY'.

All Daddys love it when their kids come up to them....CRAWL up into their laps...and slowly/shyly say "Daddy, I love You."

Yes, Daddy ALREADY knows...(and says to himself).....'well, what's he up to''...what's he want...what's he done? ha ha


Likewise....GOD ...our Heavenly the SAME WAY....'He LOVES IT when we come to Him and pray about our troubles...our WANTS...our needs' He encourages us through the Bible to 'tell it all to Him, lean on Him, nothing is too big or too small...HE LOVES to have us 'crawl upon His knees and tell Him, "I Love You Daddy....I love You Father, I love you Lord"....even when HE ALREADY KNOWS WHAT WE ARE UP TO.....and what kind of trouble that we are in. He wants us to 'tell Him and He loves to hear "I love you!" regardless.


#2....Daddy's down here on earth really like to have their kids to say "Daddy, I need help, can I talk to you" Dad's love for kids to COME AND TALK to them. And no...they may not always have the answer...but they love it when you say, "Dad, I need to tell you what happen today at school with this bunch of kids.'' Dad, do you know the answer to this??? Daddy's like when his kids WANT to ask him questions and when they are RESPECTFUL in how they ACT. Earthly Daddy's love to be PROUD of their kids good manners. (WHEN they are able...earthly Daddy's like to REWARD their kids who do their best.)

The same way with....Our GOD...OUR HEAVENLY FATHER...
He loves for us to "ask Him for HELP" and to talk to him...ASK Him questions. Our Heavenly FATHER loves our RESPECT, honoring & good manners to Him and to OTHER PEOPLE. HE IS PROUD OF OUR GOODNESS.
God is GREATEST REWARDER.....EVER....EVER...EVER. He absolutely LOVES to reward us when we obey and do good.... HE EVEN REWARDS us sometimes...most of the time....when we don't even deserve it.

(explain GRACE...CALVARY....SALVATION plan, HERE.)


#3...THANK YOU.....all Daddy's appreciate and love to hear their kids say "Thank You, Daddy!" . (you like to hear someone tell you Thank does your Dad. Nothing is too small or too big to always tell your Dad......"Thank You, Daddy...I like that....I love this...whatever. Praise your Dad for what all he does for you...for your family...for what ever he does that is good and when he is trying really hard..and especially if things are 'going wrong'. our HEAVENLY FATHER.... loves to hear us say 'THANK YOU'
In fact, God commands us to praise Him, worship Him and say THANKS...'give thanksgiving' is what the Bible tells us. He created all of us to worship Him, praise Him and to THANK HIM for every good thing on this earth and universe....because He created all ...for US TO ENJOY. SO...IN EVERYTHING give THANKS.
(Explain here on kinds of large and small blessing of life...nature, science, medicines and technology....microscopic to astronomical...--fitting to age level)


#4....Earthly Dad's like to hear their children tell them..."I MISSED YOU'
Example. If you have been to camp or Grandma's house for a while...and you come home & tell him "I missed seeing you, Daddy."
Or....If he went away somewhere on business, hospital, trip...tell him "I missed you"
Daddy's love to KNOW and HEAR YOU SAY...."I missed you, Daddy"

God is the same way. If we have not PRAYED in a long, long time...(that's when we are away from God) or maybe even 'gotten mad at God for something when things went all wrong....

....then God likes to have us come and TALK to Him in prayer and say to HIM..."Father, God...I MISSED YOU." "I don't even really know WHY that I quit praying but I really did miss talking to you."

God is like our Daddy's...HE LOVES to hear us say, ''Father, I love you"
He loves to hear us 'talk to say, Father I need HELP---prayer---tell Him our troubles, needs and wants.
He loves to hear us say, 'THANK YOU, FATHER'...this gift is so neat. I love it.
He loves to hear us say, "I missed being near you, Father'....I like being near you.


Sometimes the WORLD....goes to the extreme and talks about us being INDEPENDENT (which means..."leave me alone...I can do this all by my self.) But IN REAL LIFE....there are SOOOO many, many things that WE can't DO by ourselves. We need a miracle... We need God to DO what we have absolutely NO WAY OF DOING! (and yes, you do want to be wise, make right choices and TRY to always do your be smart...that kind of independence is good.... and that's what GOD WANTS us to strive for each day.
---try to make sure they understand the difference in extreme/good independence)

GOD, our Heavenly Father....tells us throughout the Bible that HE dearly LOVES for us to 'COME and talk to HIM about our wants, needs and troubles....He wants us to LEAN on depend on him... be DEPENDENT on Him..... and let HIM HANDLE the junk that we can't do anything about in life everyday.

Down here on earth ....sometimes, our Daddy's may disappoint us....and some even hurt us. Some people do Not even have a Daddy at home, he may be dead. Some Dad's are gone away all the time on business....some were never there from the time they were born...even some because THEY didn't want to be. It hurts when Daddy's aren't there.

But....GOD, our Heavenly Father IS ALWAYS THERE. He listens when we talk to him AND NEED HIS HELP.

He loves to help us. God is never wrong... He is perfect and He never, ever breaks a promise.

Most important... He loves you, so much that He sent His son, Jesus, to take our place on the Cross for our sin and He says if we believe His story, called the Gospel...the Bible and we try our best to live what it teaches... then he promises us a special place in Heaven to live forever, with no more tears, sorrow, hurts and worry or troubles. Lots and lots of singing, fun and celebratings!!!

So, today and everyday.....remember...if you have a Daddy, TELL him and our Heavenly Father...
I believe in you....I need your help"
"I LOVE YOU, Father, (Daddy)''

Friday, June 15, 2007

Civil War Sorrow and Salute...

I have been recently reseaching all of our family geneology and have found some of the most awesome stories about our beloved relatives published in archives that I have known nothing of until now....I am sadden....and I am thrilled and filled with amazement for ALL those WHO HAVE SUFFERED AND DIED for OUR AMERICAN FREEDOMS....IN ALL WARS.

As a child, I was raised to be PATRIOTIC by very dedicated and knowledgable parents of our nations history and world politics. (I was certainlyNOT OVERLY thrilled at that back then..ha ha was my Daddy's deep passion and constantly voiced outcry of world issues. My oldest brother became an attorney working, 'living and dying' in politics...w/ both President Johnson and Kennedy. This is what I listened to throughout my younger years-politics, historical facts and patriotism for a Christian nations that is open to all....who are willing to live by the rules/law.... it's ORIGIN...GOD'S!!!!. (if the founding fathers rules are not to your liking,..... stay home or move on.hahahaha

So, naturally, I grow older, I reflect on my childhood memories---those things that I used to detest, ha ha. Today tho this brings me to the great joy that I receive from doing research on our family heritage and past historical events...KNOWING that our GOD has ALREADY BLESSED AMERICA and it's Now ....time for...... "America to Bless God."

For those of you who read my know that my Great Grandfather (Caswell Culp) died in the Civil War in 1863...on the way home from the Yankee prison where he and his brother, Daniel (they married sisters)...had nearly starved to death in prison and the Yankees set them free because there was no food...not because the war was over....(that was not until 1865.) (also note....he and his brother were MUSTERED to serve the South and as my Granny was not a choice...many were gathered up in wagons from where they were working.)

However, the following story is one of many, many historical publication of 'CULP's HILL....Gettysburg Battle...which was my Great Grandfathers family farm.

This is the story of two of my Great Grandfather's cousins...who were also brothers....
Wesley and William Culp.


The Story of Wesley Culp (sorry, photo did not print)
Gettysburg National Military Park


Pvt. Wesley Culp
One of the saddest stories of the Battle of Gettysburg is that of an Adams County, PA. family.

Wesley Culp was a native of Gettysburg. As a boy, he played in the streets of Gettysburg and hunted in the woods of Culp's Hill, which belonged to his uncle, Henry Culp. When Wesley became a teenager, he took a job with a Gettysburg harness company that manufactured leather harnesses for carriages and wagons.

Wesley Culp became a good harness maker and enjoyed his work. In 1858, the owner of the company moved his business to Shepherdstown, Virginia and Wesley decided to move with his employer. Wesley settled into his new home at Shepherdstown and made many new friends there, though he did not lose contact with his friends and family back in Gettysburg.

When the Civil War broke out in 1861, Wesley enlisted with many of his new friends and neighbors in the 2nd Virginia Infantry Regiment. This regiment was part of the famous "Stonewall Brigade" commanded by General "Stonewall" Jackson, which saw its first battle at Bull Run.

Back in Gettysburg, Wesley's brother William Culp enlisted in the 87th Pennsylvania Infantry, a Union regiment. Luck had it that despite the two serving in opposing armies, Wesley and William never had to face one another on the battlefield though both survived several battles and many close scrapes through the first years of the war. Though William's regiment was not at Gettysburg, the 2nd Virginia Infantry, with Private Wesley Culp in the ranks, was.

(pictures didn't come thru...sorry)
The Battle of Culp's Hill by Edwin Forbes
(Battles & Leaders)

"Culp's Hill", (Gettysburg), the one owned by Wesley's uncle Henry and the same hill on which he had explored, played, and hunted as a young man, was considered by many to be the key position on the Union Army's right flank, the "point" of the fishhook-shaped Union line.

When the Confederate army attacked the hill on July 2nd, the 2nd Virginia Infantry was part of the attacking force.

It was sometime during the fighting on July 3rd when on or nearby his uncle's hill. Wesley was buried and his grave supposedly marked by his fellow soldiers of the 2nd Virginia, though the only remains of him ever found was a rifle stock with his named carved into it.

In an interesting twist of fate another story evolved at this time.

Prior to his death...Wesley was carrying a message to be given to another Gettysburg native, Virginia "Jennie" Wade, whom Wesley had known when he lived here. The message was given him by a Union soldier named Jack Skelly, also a native of Gettysburg, who was Virginia's beau and hoped to marry the girl after the war.

However, Private Skelly was mortally wounded and captured at the Second Battle of Winchester, Virginia, on June 15. This is where that Wesley Culp discovered severly wounded, Skelly in a temporary hospital and where Wesley had agreed to take a message to Skelly's girlfriend, Virginia, in Gettysburg, just in case his regiment got close enough to Gettysburg for Wesley to deliver it.

Sadly, the note was never delivered...the sorrows of war... all three people- Wesley Culp, Jack Skelly and Jennie Wade- died without knowing the fate of the other. The note of love found upon Wesley Culps body was unable to be delivered.

Wesley's brother William Culp survived the war and left the service as an Union officer. Legend, sadly has it that William considered his dead brother a traitor for serving against his native state, and never recognized nor spoke of him again.

The Culp family was truly one divided by the war. Brothers against brothers, Fathers against sons. National archives records that 380 Culps fought and were divided in the Civil War. (136 members of the family served the Confederate Army while 244 served in Union Army, many being leading officers).

National Park Service
Gettysburg National Military Park
97 Taneytown Road
Gettysburg, PA 17325

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Worthy Notations.....


Voice on a telephone the caller:
"I am not available right now,
but Thank you for caring enough to call.
I am making some changes in my life.
Please leave a message after the
Beep. If I do not return your call,
You are one of the changes." ~~~~~

Aspire to inspire before you expire. ~~~~~

My wife and I had words, But I didn't get to use mine.~~~~~

Frustration is trying to find your glasses without your glasses. ~~~~~

Blessed are those who can give without remembering And take without forgetting.~~~~~

The irony of life is that, by the time
You're old enough to know your way
Around, you're not going anywhere. ~~~~~

God made man before woman so as to give him time to think Of an answer for her first question. ~~~~~

I was always taught to respect my elders, But it keeps getting harder to find one. ~~~~~ (could it be that I AM one?)

Every morning is the dawn of a new error.

The quote of the month is by Jay Leno: "With hurricanes, tornados, fires out of control, mud slides, flooding, severe thunderstorms tearing up the country from one end to another, and with the threat of bird flu and terrorist attacks, "Are we sure this is a good time to take God out of the Pledge of Allegiance?"

Have great and everyday. G~~~~~~~~~~~~