David C. Hughes, Writer

“Whatever you do, do from the heart, as for the Lord and not for others” –Colossians 3:23 NABRE

Archive for the category “Miscellaneous Thoughts and Wanderings”

Be Yourself

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.

—Edmund Burke

 

Welcome to the village of Patterling Dale,

A ghost town of memories, a tragic old tale

Oft told by the ancients, a story of truth

To instill deep respect in the hearts of the youth.

 

Patterling Dale was a city, you see,

Spread out in a valley at the edge of the sea,

A light shining bright, a rock of salvation,

The envy of villages across a great nation.

 

Built on a solid foundation of truth,

Patterling Dale bred not one man uncouth.

All of the citizens respected the Book,

Heeding its teaching without second look.

 

The Book was entrusted to Mortimer Glass

Who, as mayor that year, ran the village with class.

At meetings the mayor would read with much glee

Each and every command, each and every decree.

 

The code was as modest as tying a shoe,

The rules were so natural, so easy to do.

No citizen questioned—they made perfect sense—

Thus life in the Dale made worry past tense.

 

‘Til one day Flannigan Flickery Floo

Came to work in a shirt colored deep purple blue

“Flannigan, friend!” cried the mayor—he shook!

“You must wear bright red, like it says in the Book!”

 

“Or else?” questioned Flannigan, with a cock of his head,

What will happen to me if I do not wear red?”

“Why, you know the rules that come straight from the Top,

The town will be trampled by Korkadon Snop!”

 

“Korkadon Snop!” exclaimed Floo with a sneer.

“We haven’t seen those since . . . what was the year?”

“Precisely, my friend,” said the mayor, askew.

“The Book says ‘wear red,’ not a deep shade of blue.”

 

“Very well,” said Flannigan with a sigh and a smirk.

“I’ll go home and change out of my purplish shirt.

But I assure you, good man, that this won’t be the last

Time I question the guidance of that Book, Mayor Glass.”

 

The very next day Mr. Flickery Floo

Showed up early for work, and what did he do?

He wore red, indeed, but not like the rest—

The color again put Mayor Glass to the test.

 

“Flannigan Flickery Floo, you old cur,

I must ask you to follow the rules again, sir.

That dark shade of red, well, it won’t work to stop

Those man-eating beasts, the Korkadon Snop!”

 

Floo stood and he sighed and he folded his arms,

“I don’t see the fuss, I can’t see the harm

In flexing commands by the slightest degree—

Surely maroon won’t suspend that decree.”

 

“That decree!” cried the mayor—he shook and he trembled!

“A fool do you think I grossly resemble?!

You’ll bring down this town by opening the door

To not only this, but to much, much, much more!”

 

“It’s just a slight tweak,” yelled Horatio Newels.

“How bad can it get by this slight bend of rules?”

“I agree,” shouted Fiona Lattigus Slim.

“I don’t see the harm, do you, Clandish Jim?”

 

The mayor tried reasoning but soon was outnumbered,

So he slipped out the back and walked briskly and pondered

The absurdity of revolt, the danger it brought—

If he let it get further the town would be fraught.

 

Or worse, Mortimer thought with a shiver of fright,

The town could be trampled in less than a night.

The Book was quite clear on that point, and it spurred

His hope that the others would grow as concerned.

 

The next morning, however, Glass fell to his knees—

Two dozen—no, two hundred!—maroon shirts he did see.

“No harm and no foul,” said Flickery Floo,

Who’s dark shirt was striped with bright flashes of blue.

 

“Flannigan, Flannigan, what have you done?

You’ve opened the door to disaster bar none!”

The mayor appealed to the rest of the town,

But they shrugged their thin shoulders with heads hanging down.

 

“Mayor, oh Mayor, oh fair Mr. Glass,”

Said Flannigan Flickery Floo with panache.

He picked up the Book and threw it at him,

And the mayor fell flat and his vision grew dim.

 

“You see, Mr. Mayor, your threats go unheeded,

No mystery monster has appeared and stampeded,

So we’re taking you out and hanging you high

From a tree, Mr. Mortimer, where you’ll finally die.

 

“The Book,” breathed the mayor, “You know that it’s true.

Its word’s never failed us, its message, its view.”

He lifted his head off the floor and he saw

The townspeople turn and walk from the brawl.

 

“You’ll see,” said Glass as they dragged him away

To hang him from branches that very same day.

“You’ll see what your actions have done to this town—

Such simple decrees, but you’ve brought it all down.”

 

The blustering minority, the demanding few

Showed up the next day at work wearing blue.

The silent majority averted their eyes,

Choosing, instead, to live easier with lies.

 

They put up their Books, they talked so polite,

They forgot about the mayor and his nonsensical plight.

And after a year, or maybe much more,

The result of their actions finally opened the door.

 

They rushed in, the Korkadon Snop, those beasts,

And trampled poor Patterling Dale under feet.

The town to this day no longer exists

Except for a tree with a carving like this:

 

“In branches above swung Mortimer Glass

Who insisted decrees were more important than class.

See, no harm in not following the Book on the shelf,

Feel free to be you . . . feel free to be yourself.”

 

 

 

 

Copyright ©2015 by David C. Hughes

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Reflections on My First 50 Blog Posts

On August 15, 2013, exactly two weeks after I handed in my badge to the nice out-processing people at my former company, I took the next step of faith and posted my first blog post.  “Hi!” I wrote.  “And welcome to my brand-spankin-new blog site.  I hope you’re as excited as I am!” And was I ever excited!  And nervous.  And scared.  And I wondered almost constantly if I’d made the right decision to sever ties with a company with whom I’d carried on a seamless 22-year relationship. But that first blog post generated 196 hits, a couple comments, and the assurance I’d at least managed to figure out, from scratch, how to crank up a blog.  Then the work really began . . . .

On February 19, 2014, almost exactly six months after I posted that first hello to the world, I published my 50th blog post, and I have to say, it’s been a heck of a lot of work!  But you know what? I absolutely LOVE IT!  Over these past six months my worry about making ends meet has dwindled to almost nothing as the Lord continues to bless my family with little kisses on the cheek to say “I’m here, I’ve been here, and I’ll continue to be here.  Quit worrying, stop fretting, and just enjoy this adventure with Me.  This is what I intended for you to do all along, and I am faithful to My promises.”  And man-o-man has He been faithful!  I’ve got a whole book planned to “make known His marvelous deeds.”  And the writing?  Oh, the writing . . . . It’s also been nothing short of miraculous.  And for that, I thank not only God for giving me the talent, the means, and the persistence, but I also thank you, my loyal blog followers, for sticking with me, encouraging me, and helping me to feel more comfortable wearing this avocation.  Thank you, thank you, thank you!

So what’s been happening over the last six months?  A bunch!  Let me fill you in on some of the excitement:

1) I managed to post 25 “Dailies,” my little devotionals, reflections, and essays on what it means to be a Christian man, father, husband, son, brother, and friend in these exciting and challenging times. All I can say is “Yay, Jesus!”

2) I’ve posted ten of the 23 chapters of The Epiphany of Joy, the book God ordained for me to write back in June of 2011.  Since then I’ve completed all but seven of the chapters, and I’ve provided the work-in-progress to Progressive Rising Phoenix Press for their publishing consideration.  Your encouragement and support of this project has been exciting and heartwarming, and I hope to hear from Progressive Rising Phoenix soon.  Please pray for me!

3) In response to Pastor Marc Owings’ request, I provided four “guest” devotionals to be emailed to the elevateHim Ministries distribution.  My first one, “Overflowing with Hope,” has already generated a response which glorifies God and confirms I’m firmly planted in His will.

4) You know the old cliché, “God works in mysterious ways.”  When I first considered committing to writing fulltime, I never in my wildest dreams thought that I’d wind up becoming a professional editor as well!  But that’s what happened, and it’s been eye-opening, to say the least.  Since October I’ve had the pleasure of editing three books, one of which has been picked up for publication by Progressive Rising Phoenix Press.  Emma Gingerich’s book, Runaway Amish Girl, is currently in the design phase, and should be released soon.  Progressive Rising Phoenix also asked me to write a review of Emma’s memoir, and this review will be included on the back cover of Runaway Amish Girl!

5) A couple months ago I consulted with Courtney Gonzales, a young woman who’s four-year-old son was born with omphalocele, a condition where the fetus develops with its abdominal organs on the outside of its body.  She related to me the details of her pregnancy, the medical challenges her child faced, the decisions she made, and the prayer covering cast across the United States for the health of her baby.  She told me about the birth and how, against impossible odds, her child was able to go home after only three weeks in the hospital, and how after 5 ½ months Landon had his one and only surgery to tidy up the hole in his belly.  After telling me this emotional story, she asked if I’d be willing to write a book about it.  I agreed.  I plan to start Love Me from the Inside Out as soon as I complete the final manuscript of The Epiphany of Joy.  It is an honor to help this young lady to share her miraculous testimony with the world, and at the same time encourage other women whose babies have been diagnosed with the same condition.

I fully recognize the huge responsibility this gift comes with, and as I’ve mentioned before, this labor of love would be meaningless without your participation, whether it be actively reading these blogs, engaging with me on Facebook and LinkedIn, sending me emails, encouraging me in person, or, soon, coming to one of my book signings!  As Jesus said in Luke 12:48, “From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.”  I will continue to be faithful with the gifts and talents I’ve been given, and I ask for your continued prayers, encouragement, and support as I move forward with my next 50 blog posts.  And the 50 after that.  And the 50 after that . . . .

Oh, by the way, if you’re not following my blog, please go to my blog site and click on the “Follow my blog!” link in the lower right-hand corner of the website’s home page.  Enter your email address, and you’ll automatically receive notification when I make a post, which is usually on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  Please also encourage other folks who might be interested to check out my blog page as well.

Also, I’ve had folks tell me they’d like to make comments on my posts, but can’t find the place on the website to do that.  On the blog format I chose, it’s not that obvious, but if you scroll down to the bottom of the post, in the “tags” section, “Leave a Comment” is the very last hyperlink in the list.  I know, it’s weird.  Alternatively, you can click on the date of the post and a “Leave a Comment” radio button will appear underneath the date.  If you read my posts via email, a prominent “Leave a Comment” button is included at the bottom of the post.  I would LOVE to hear from you!

Thanks again for your continued support, love, and encouragement, and please feel free to get in touch with me any time with comments, suggestions, and ideas you’d like to see me write about.  God bless you!

Copyright © 2014 David C Hughes

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