Doing the Lord's Business
Wow, what a day it was!
On this 31rst day of October, 2020, four days ahead of the most important presidential election in American history, I had the opportunity to unite with several members, brother's and sister's from my church and other churches in this mountain community in Big Bear, California.
The purpose of the day and this mission was to express the Good Lord's message as it pertains to this upcoming election and how it relates to the issues surrounding Pro-Life and Pro-Choice.
It was the first time I had ever stepped out of my little home, physically, mentally, and emotionally to stand on a street corner to express the Lord's will. I mean, I was Bar Mitzvah'd, standing in front of family and friends to read His word from the Torah at thirteen years old, and I wrote a book on behalf of the Lord's blessings on me many years later, but I have never stood on a street corner in His honor.
Each participant was assigned a corner along Big Bear Blvd. I believe there were close to fifty of us. Each would simply hold up a sign in reference to the killing of unborn babies. Mine can be seen in the photo below.
Scripture suggests that the womb is a place to bear "His Fruit." It doesn't say to bear the woman's fruit, nor the woman's co creator of the fruit. It specifically says "His Fruit."
To backtrack for a moment, as a young adult I found myself to have never understood the Lord's will in this regard. Several years after two relationships with two separate woman I came to find out that they aborted a fetus that they said was associated with me. When I found out I was in shock. It was their choice as far as I was educated on, and the supreme court agreed with them. Yes, I have repented and asked for forgiveness. My naivety to the scripture was in play, as well my ignorance to the science and God's meaning. I was a typical uninformed image of our creator.
Knowing today that over 100 million fetuses have been aborted since Roe v Wade, I can take solace in recognizing I was not alone. Still, regardless of what the culture says about the matter, or the United States Supreme Court, I was wrong on many fronts. "The womb is the bearer of God's fruit...not mine or my partners. Hence; I've asked the Lord to forgive me for this ignorance, and in my haste.
This said, while standing on the busiest street in Big Bear holding a sign in recognition of this desire of our creator, although fully clothed, I felt bear naked. I certainly wanted the Lord to know I have come full circle in my repentance. I was bearing my claim!
As it were, there were many people standing, waiting for a seat in the Denny's Restaurant that resided behind me. There were hundreds of cars, if not thousands that drove by and saw me and my sign. To my pleasure there were more honks of approval than I could count. There were also a few who screamed obscenity's at me, and few both driving and walking who used their middle finger to sign language their opinion. In all, I would just smile...knowing the Lord was pleased with my stand for Him. I felt confident in the hedge of protection he put around me...
I did have my cell phone with me. I tried to take a selfie so I could later attest to those in disbelief that I was there, in body, mind, and soul. I also played the song "Rattle" by Elevation Worship. I played it several times to remind me why my bones were rattling. If you've not heard this song I highly encourage you to do so! It is enlightening and truly puts the Holy Spirit in charge of ones spiritual awareness. It's a reminder that God lives and He'll help you live. In other words, He'll open the grave, rattle your bones, and allow one to live again.
At the end of my stand, a married couple who was waiting their turn to go into the restaurant, they had been waiting over an hour, walked up to me to introduce themselves. At first I thought they might say some disparaging words. They both said that I was "a blessing" to them while they waited. They heard the honking. They also witnessed the screaming obscenity's emanating from car windows. They witnessed the few who expressed their vulgar hand gestures. What a blessing it was to me that they wanted to make me feel welcomed in our shared theology! I invited them to my church's Sunday service the following day. They were up visiting this little Southern California mountain community to relax, see the change in season, and at close to 7,000' elevation get closer to God. With hope their stay was rewarding!!
I do remember one significant question they asked, which stood out among the few I answered. They asked; "why would you subject yourself to such a task?" Because they were believers, I owed them my sincere response; "When the Good Lord askes me to do something I do it. Besides, He doesn't take no for an answer."
I'll encourage everyone to listen to your heart, that is where God resides. He loves everyone, even those who have sinned. He's got incredible power, wisdom, and the ability to forgive even the worst of our human mistakes. He want's to forgive. He gives us all the choice to repent and turn from our sinful ways. In Nike's words, "Just Do It." He promises us his kingdom if we believe in him, honor him, and ask for forgiveness. He also promises eternal life if we follow his lead and accept him as our Lord and Savior. He keeps all his promises, scripture is batting 1000%.
So let me ask you all, who wouldn't want that promise?
I'll conclude by suggesting that each and everyone of you who read this message, no matter what your day has instore for you, may it be beautiful and blessed!!
A messenger of the Lord ;)
Doing the Lord's Business
' I attended my second annual Kimura/Uesugi fishing trip aboard the American Angler. This group has been chartering this great fishing vessel every year from 1994 to the present. Not only are they experienced fishermen; however, they are great, salt of the Earth, people. We enjoyed some of the finest yellowtail and bluefin fishing I have ever been a part of. Although we traveled many miles at sea to accomplish this fantastic catch it was worth every minute when we arrived at our desired location...
We left San Diego's fabled landing the morning of August 6th. Our first destination was the southwest fishing grounds around San Clemente' Island. Our targeted species, the elusive bluefin tuna, which had been swimming in this location for the better part of a month were nowhere to be found. Like the great Houdini, these fish presented themselves prior to our arrival in the size class from 20-400 pounds and as magical as the great Houdini was, they simply disappeared. A week prior to our visit to these grounds, monster bluefin's were being landed on kite baits that ranged in size from 100 to 300 pounds, while the school size (20-70 pounds) were being caught on regular sonar marks and on the drift. As luck would have it, their disappearance left the fishermen and crew wanting. We saw some foamers (game-fish feeding on bait-fish at the surface), throwing bait and lures at them; however, these elusive tasting tuna's wanted little of our offerings.
From this location, we anchored up at dark in San Clemente's Pyramid Cove until midnight. As the clock struck midnight, the skipper fired up the American Angler's engines to head to another fabled fishing grounds called the Cortes Bank. I've fished on the Bank a few times in my past. It is renowned for attracting large yellowtail and surfers when the swell is up. Some may have seen photos or heard of stories in which the Bank supports 20-50 foot waves. Fishermen have enjoyed beautiful grade yellowtail as well as big tuna on this Bank depending on the year and season. The Bank is a land mass beneath the surface, not visible without the use of electronics. The land mass beneath the surface rises from the depths of the Pacific to 10 fathoms beneath the surface of the ocean. From the Island of Santa Catalina, the Bank rises west of her about seventeen miles.
The morning bite was as advertised on home-guard yellowtail. I caught five of these warriors from 20-30 pounds, and two of the anglers aboard landed yellowtail that would ultimately finish second and third in the jackpot of our trip. I caught my fish on surface irons and bait. My first and second fish were caught on a surface iron lure I named "LADY BER." LOL, one might claim I am a bit of a nut naming my lures; however, this lure and name had significant importance.
The lure was a Salas 7XL with a single hook. The name I gave it was in memory of my mother (Bernice), a beautiful lady who had recently joined our creator in his heavenly mansion. "LADY BER" had a kick to her unlike any other lure in my arsenal or my life. It was so pleasurable to tie her on my line, cast her out and watch her entice two beautiful friends of mankind. Just like mom, she shinned like the midday sun. The other three yellowtail my hook found a way into their mouths came on sardine bait and "LADY BER's" sidekick ("The Glue"). Unfortunately, one of the bruisers I hooked into using "LADY BER" had taken the lure down to a pinnacle in its home and sawed it off. Then I used "The Glue." Like with mom, nothing last forever aside from the memories in our heart...
That afternoon the skipper took us back to the bluefin grounds outside San Clemente' Island. As luck would have it, they were still in their Houdini mindset and we only were able to catch one fish the entire afternoon. We again spent the beginning part of the evening in Pyramid Cove, leaving again at midnight for the opportunity to fish the Bank for the morning bite on yellowtail. As was during the previous day's fishing, I was able to snooker five more of these fabled Cortes yellows using another lure, called a YoYo 6X Jr. jig, in mint and white. It's name was "Little Lynne-ita." After the fifth fish boarded the Angler's deck, this little yoyo found a rock that I could not free it from. Although ten fish later and two lures lost, I would not trade the exchange for anything....
Getting word that the tunas were still not showing south of us, the skipper pulled the string and headed due southwest to a little place that some call yellowtail mecca heaven. Thirty six hours later, after fishing only a few kelp paddies and finding some Mexican homegrown puff floating in the vast Pacific (which we released), we found ourselves in another yellowtail playground. There was a lure I used, after getting my first fish in the morning on a sardine, I named "Cedros Candy." This little Taddy-A2 seemed to attract a fish a drop for two hours straight. It was sensational fishing and the "candy" was sensational in its own right. Within a few hours I had my trip's limit of yellowtail and then began fishing for the locals (native panga fishermen), the crew (x three fish), and some fellow anglers (x five fish). As a group, we hooked and handed the native's our rods, and when they were busy fighting fish, we proceeded to load the bow of their panga with over fifty yellow's. After handing off several hooked fish to them to fight, I contributed another five in rout to a spectacular catching day. Needles to say, my arms were fatigued in such a cool way...
With only two days remaining on our voyage, the skipper pulled the plug again about 2:00 PM, deciding to head back north to another fishing ground outside Santa Catalina Island because word got out that the elusive bluefin had shown up there. This area was another 36 six hour ride away and about 60 miles from San Diego. We arrived at the fishing grounds for our last day of fishing about 3:30 AM. There were already several boats in the area, telling me we had a great shot at catching this elusive prey. During our day of travel, then laying in my bunk in the stateroom before falling asleep, I said a few prayers to our creator...
"Dear Lord, considering I have been seeking the sashimi of these elusive bluefin for several years, failing to land one on three trips prior, could you please give our skipper the wisdom to put us on a spot in which they would be willing to come out and play. Could you also give me the wisdom and discernment to catch my limit...a bunch of friends and my two boys really wanted a dinner of these fantastic tasting fish. Thank you LORD. I love you with all my heart, all my soul, and all my mind..."
It never ceases to amaze me how kind our creator is. By daybreak I had five bluefin chilling in the vessel's RSW fish wells. Amazingly enough, three fourths of them were caught on a lure called a "Flatfall." Her nickname was "Hollywood" because she had white glow and chrome stripes. On one stop during the day's events, we motored in close proximity of a football field sized "foamer." Most of the fisherman cast bait to this hungry bunch. Considering "Hollywood" became one hooked tuna's dangling jewelry after its teeth were sharp enough to separate itself by chewing through my line, I dropped down a 200 gram colorful Flatfall named "The Wicked Lady." As luck would have it once more on this sensational trip, a forty-five pound bluefin inhaled "The Wicked Lady." This king of the school would eventually take home the jackpot purse, eclipsing the weight of all other contenders onboard, including the thirty-six and thirty-two pound yellows taken aboard earlier in the trip. The fight was about fifteen minutes, as this tuna warrior had the heart of a champion. I was using my sixty pound line outfit with "The Wicked Lady" because of her size, otherwise I'm sure it would have been a much longer fight had she been tied to the 40 pound outfit I had used most of the day.
After boating the potential jackpot fish, my sixth of the day and the limit on these tuna, the skipper told me to continue fishing and to give the fish I would catch to other anglers and the crew. By day's end, I had caught over twenty five bluefin, helping others to achieve their limit and giving the crew a reward of sushi for their hard work. At one point, the skipper, the crew, and several fishermen were astounded at just how dynamic the Flatfall worked. Fellow fishermen were suggesting they rub my arms, seeking the good luck through osmosis. The skipper suggested after a short time that; "I have never seen anything like it." In basketball jargon, I was "on fire." With each fish I hooked into, and later bring aboard, I could only look up and thank our creator for the good fortune he bestowed upon me. It was one of those fabulous days in which I knew he was answering my prayers....
For all the fishermen who dream of days in which the fish actually cooperate with your intentions...keep the faith. Those days just may be a cast away!
I wish you all screaming reels, tight drags, and the best sashimi in the world ;)
Tribute To A True Blessing
A Tribute To A True Blessing
Bernice ‘no middle name needed’ Sherman
July 16, 1937 – July 13, 2020
*Music Soundtrack: “Whenever God Shines His Light”- Van Morrison Original
It is so ‘nice’ to see your friendly faces here and via Facebook live and Zoom to honor, celebrate, and pay tribute to the beautiful woman known as Honey, Mom, Grammy, Be, Nice’, and Lady Ber. From my family’s heart to yours, thank you all for your love, friendship, generosity, and support! May I ask that we all take a moment to silently thank the Good Lord for the great blessing she was to us all! …[AMEN]
I’d like to begin by thanking her for being the person she chose to be!! First, by bringing me into this world. I knew I was blessed because when the nurses handed me to her upon my first breath; I greeted her with a belly full of love, and she still loved me all these years. It was my day-one lesson regarding the importance of asking for forgiveness.
Setting aside the many beautiful homes she designed, and the “Little Switzerland” Saint Ives marvel she created at the end of the 20th Century, as well so many of her material world accolades – I’d like to focus on a few of the unseen things she did and represented.
Surely, those exquisite material world accomplishments sparked interest in all levels in our culture. The Kaanapali Condo had king and queen hand carved everywhere one looked. To this day, it is one of the most beautiful homes I’ve ever been in. Most who saw her works recognized it takes God given type skill. She had an innate ability to see the finish in her mind’s eye before the job even began. Also, her “Straight-A” track record through-out her education is so darn impressive.
However, in all her brilliance and her creations in the material world, I’m of sound reason that these qualities paled by the power to the thousands compared to the person she chose to “Be.”
Many of you know I enjoy telling a story, so bear with me; with hope you all will find this extremely fascinating…
Her lead, although somewhat foreign to a playful, happy-go-lucky, sort of renegade child, or simply, a guy who marvels at many things, could not have been more divine. I so appreciated her culinary expertise, her willingness to care for us children when we were under the weather, be a personal Uber driver to years of summer camp, practices, and games. My best fan in the stands! Have a band-aid in hand for the many hard knocks I brought home. She was a calming but inspirational voice to try my best on the next exam, or to strap the helmet on, or to lace up the Converse All-Stars for athletic battles. In context, the countless game-day talks at the kitchen table, or her driving…me listening. She would often suggest:
“There is nothing in this world you cannot accomplish so long as you give it your best shot – as with God – with all your heart, all your soul, and with all your mind. Believe in God and he will bless you. Then – anything is possible.”
These prophetic words will continue to tug at the heartstrings of Brad, Bonnie, and my journey’s!!
I’d like to thank her for loving Bryce and Jake! Her love can be seen in them today – they love family and they love life.
This…this is priceless!!
“Love your neighbor as you would love yourself.”
Love our neighbor…God bless the Cohen Family, our Northridge home next-door neighbor, and the Dorfman Family, the Mann’s, and the Hymann’s. They made it so easy for me.
Thank you all! I love you!
I love that all you wonderful “neighbors” attending this tribute illustrate her love for you! I loved that she made birthdays and holidays so special for family and friends. She welcomed many into her home and into our family in such a cool way. She was a friend to all who sought her advice. She treated everyone with respect, dignity, and with her forever giving and loving nature…
She was the glue. She brought us all together in her lead to emphasize family – a value our creator placed high on his list. Foremost, that we understood that “Truth Is Absolute.” That our creator knows everything. Hence,
“Be True to Thyself.”
She often had conversations with my siblings and I about how to treat family and friends. How to interact with respect, and how important it is that family stick together. A unique and impenetrable bond – a sacred trust. In context, principles that would not be compromised in our pluralized, privatized, politicized and now polarized worldly culture.
I can recall those countless dinners when I was the subject of “pushing the envelope,” sort-to-speak – unsuccessfully arguing; “I’m human…we’re all human, we make mistakes.” I’d learn, I’d ask for forgiveness. I’d ask for wisdom. I’d thank. I’d try to move to “higher ground.” I’d do it almost every day. A fellowship of sorts. It was, and still is in those quiet moments before I’d fall asleep at night when I’d realize Mom was right, in that it is very difficult to argue against –
“The Way, The Truth, and The Life.”
Mom was the glue and motivation for me to never lose sight!
As many of you know, she struggled greatly these past few years, especially with memory, and had had her share of visits to the professionals to help in the resolve. Upon one visit to one of these facilities, she embraced her recovery by returning to her spiritual nature. I was not surprised, rather pleasantly warmed when she delighted in her visit to their prayer and church services. It left the door open for me to reconnect with her in this light.
“And we dance to a whispered voice, overheard by the soul, undertook by the heart, we both knew it, we both knew it…”
As we grew older, and most recently with the onset of her battle with dementia, little did we both know I’d be doing the whispering, “God loves you Mom, God loves you. One day you are going to heaven, God’s paradise” – Sincerely returning the spiritual love and guidance that she provided to me many years ago.
I’d like to thank her for helping me to understand the whispered voice, and an insight into the spiritual world she always honored with all her heart, all her soul, and all her mind!
When I asked her the question at that ripe ol’ age of 9 years old — “Why would God call our brother to the ‘Pearly Gates’ at such a young age?” Her reply was short and brilliantly prophetic.
“God works in mysterious ways.”
It took a few years to unwind the logic; however, what a blessing it was that she planted the seed to understanding. I took those words of advice to heart, praying often that I might understand them, then caring enough to take a magnifying glass to look closer. Many years later while researching for some thoughts I wanted to share in a book I was working on, I again saw how the Lord works in “mysterious ways.”
In that research, I experienced wonderment regarding symbols and numbers that I so wanted to share with her! We are told in scripture to look at symbols, numbers, and the stars for meaning and the signs of the seasons.
I offered that I was born on the 7th day of January, in the year 1960. In numerology, 1960 would be another 7 – adding the numbers together until only a single whole number exists. Incidentally, January and our last name Sherman contain 7 letters of the alphabet. I could go on and on how many times 7 is represented in scripture. Mind boggling to be sure – over 54 times in the book of Revelation alone, and 735 times combined.
In context; when I realized recently that she too had the seven numerology, in that she was born in the 7th month of the calendar year, and on the 16th day of that month, with the 16 represented by a 7, and her first and last name comprises 7 letters respectfully – it explained a link I so often contemplated. The Lord touched me with divine wonderment. It is my interpretation that we are divinely linked because scripture suggests,
“The number 7 is the foundation of our creator’s word.”
He works mysteriously through the energy of this number…
Even though my disappointment in the fact I could no longer explain my findings to her was real, the joy I had in this moment of wonderment was sensational! My eyes started running like a sprinkler system only the Good Lord has the code to. I flipped down my laptop and the light over it, opened the blind, then looked directly up at the star Polaris. I just gazed up to the Messiah, who sits to our Father’s right-hand side on the throne – weeping. Thanking Him with all my heart, all my soul, and all my mind.
I imagined Enoch close by, his son Methuselah and grandson Noah a little further away, with Abraham, Moses, Elijah, and King David listening in. The Messiah was giving me that sense of wonderment that we all crave in life; it was a sense of ABSOLUTE TRUTH. BTW, I wanted to tell her that all these human icons contain some of the 7 numerology. I know, I sat in awe!! I felt so honored and blessed that we are connected and that I get the blessing of knowing I will be her teammate throughout eternity.
While staring into the clear night sky, a soft, kind, yet firm voice that could only be heard by the heart’s ears, whispered…
“You need to share your research, your relationship with me, and your experiences Bryan David; you need to share. The season is nigh!”
I just knew that voice –it was a consciousness shared by the Messiah and my Mom. They both want me to share. As the years accumulated and her disease began to take hold, she could no longer manage her own thoughts as they relate. Not coincidentally, her message came through her heart. In all regard, I’m secure in the belief that she and I are linked in one of those “mysterious ways.”
What a blessing we share!!
Candidly, here is my take-a-way; The Messiah knew her role in this “Greatest Show on Earth” drama we are playing out. Her story was written long ago. The Lord our God designed her for her role. The Messiah was messaging me through her to translate her role. When the logic clicked, our divine connection made perfect sense. It is not a “something from nothing” hypothesis, like the big bang theory. No, I’m of the belief we are not linked by “random chance” that occurred billions upon billions of years ago in Darwinian and Hawking doctrine of evolution. Although I love science and appreciate these representatives of modern science for their contributions, clearly The Sacred Yitzack and Chapter 1 of Genesis spells it out. Ancient Hebrew forefathers and Moses did us all the honor!
My certainty that she is divinely linked to our Messiah stems from another revelation. This one came by doing a little research in the New Testament.
There’s a story told from historical record that the Messiah was asked by his followers what he felt were the most important of the 613 commandments that Moses was enlightened with, outlined for the world’s people. Some said, all of them. King David said 15. The stones were obviously engraved with 10. The Jewish profits Isiah and Micah said 6 and 3 respectfully. The Messiah narrowed it to TWO. Those two were the two she taught us as children–
To “Love thy Lord thy God with all thy heart, with all thy soul, and with all thy mind,”
and to “Love they neighbor as thy self.”
It is so amazing to me that when I look back, she was linked to the Messiah in an intuitive manner. She followed her heart and intuitively was serving the Lord’s purpose for her. She may not have even recognized it herself…yet she lit candles to enter many many Sabbaths, prepared Seder and High Holiday dinners, and most notably, she offered her worldview in her words and actions. She walked the walk. The Good Lord blessed her amazing journey because she believed in Him.
To illustrate; she volunteered her beautiful voice to the choir of gifted artist during the High Holidays. For years she sang on behalf of “believers” of this world for repentance, and to praise and show grace! I can imagine now how our creator was so honored! Why, because he put her here to share her principles, her beliefs, and to
“Be a brightly lit candle in a time of increasing darkness.”
Incredible – She was a saint to our world from the spiritual world!
Considering the great depths I have explored to understanding scripture, theology, science, and “mysterious ways,” I am absolutely convinced her walk with our creator now is nothing short of enlightenment, wonderment, unequaled love, and peace. The Lord has already rewired her conscious and redesigned her body. Her reunion with many, including that precious little guy who joined us for “7” years, surely has her cup of fulfillment overflowing. And, to know she is walking with our Messiah and those many true believers and loved ones for 1000 years and then into eternity leaves me excited and with a divine sense of love and joy…FOR HER!
I’ll semi-conclude with these words from one of her favorite artists that so often bellowed from our Northridge home. I can still hear her beautiful voice singing these lyrics in my minds ear. Oh no, not a chance, I am not going to sing them. I sing like my Dad. ;) I’ll recite them and then shortly let the gifted do that…
“Lost on a painted sky, where the clouds are hung for the poets’ eye, you may find Him, if you may find Him…
There on a distant shore, by the wings of dreams through an open door, you may know Him…If you may…
As a page that aches for a word which speaks on a theme, that is timeless… and the one God will make for your day…
Sing - As a song in search of a voice that is silent…and the Son God will make for your way…
And we dance to a whispered voice, overheard by the soul, undertook by the heart, you may know it…if you may know it…
While the sand would become the stone, which begat the spark that turned to living bone,
HOLY HOLY, SANCTUS SANCTUS…
Is it a coincidence that the symbology in her name, her words, and her actions were the true blessings to us all? Think about it: Bernice – “Be Righteous and Nice.” This was the Messiah’s message, yes? This was the Messiah mysteriously working through her. Let me give you a hint more insight:
While going through the final stages of a drug rehab program because of medically prescribed opiates, she was as clear minded as she had been in a long, long time. She had just come from church services. She was in good spirits and happy in my impression. She was humming while walking to the dining area. I asked; “How was the service, Mom?” Her reply put a smile on my face. “Their services are so uplifting Bry. The music was unlike anything I’ve heard. It was so beautiful. I really like this guy they call Jesus. I felt so warm while they were singing and telling stories about Him. I really didn’t know who he was. Bry, do you know about Him?” “Yes, I do Mom!” “How come you never told me about Him?” “I did Mom, I tried to tell you, He is our Messiah. I think the disease you were fighting and the meds you were on made it difficult for you to remember.”
Is it a coincidence that a lady who had never been to a church service specifically to pray, who sang to God for years on a Judaeo pulpit, established roots in reform Judaism doctrine, care to have me tell her about the Messiah was touched in a mysterious way? I sure was!
Is it a coincidence Messiah, which means savior in Hebrew, has “7” letters in its spelling? Is it a coincidence the number “7” is viewed in the Torah as “the foundation of God’s word?” Is it a coincidence her son and our brother blessed us for “7” years? Is it a coincidence that of the sixty rooms available to sixty live-in patients that she would reside in for the better part of her ten month stay prior to her being called to heaven, just so happened to be room number “7”? Is it coincidental that she would marry a man whose name has two “7’s” associated in symbology, and her marriage lasted a lifetime? Is it a coincidence she wore a size 7 shoe, or that Grandma & Grandpa named her Bernice consciously knowing the symbology in her name? Is it a coincidence she spread the word of the Messiah’s two most important Commandments? Is it a coincidence that her journey was a message for us all on how to “Be” – “as a page that aches for a word which speaks on a theme that is timeless,” and “sing” – “as a song in search of a voice that is silent,” and where that will lead – “the S ‘O’ N God will make for our way?” Is it coincidental that I am an offspring of hers that aligns with the energy associated with the number “7?” My tears are witness to the honor! Is it coincidental that her friends and family often referred to her as “Be or Nice`ie”. Or with the moniker that often comes with supreme stardom – like, Lady Ber?
Who would have known? ;)
Genuinely I tell you, she was the greatest unassuming superstar that my path had ever crossed. She made us all feel like stars – yet it would be her, the ‘n i c e’ part of her name, that in combination proved to me who is the brightest star of them all. She was a messenger, a modern-day American born Messianic Jew sent from God. She followed a teaching she had no idea was required of our era. She followed her heart. Because the Lord speaks to us through frequency, with our largest electromagnetic conductor being the human heart, she exquisitely exemplified His message in her name, numerology, words, and actions!
In sum, Be Righteous and Nice = Finishes First!!
I’m so honored to tell her amazing story! She stamped her ticket to walk with God because she walked the walk-through mysterious ways. Her name and numerology solidify it all!
Finally, I’d like to praise and give thanks to our creator. Through his mysterious ways we all had our paths cross, get to know, and be loved by not just an ordinary Star – but a Superstar in the spiritual world. How blessed we were, and how blessed you are Dad! After putting this together, I can see why you always felt like the luckiest guy in the world when you were with Mom. I think we all did yet may not have recognized it in its entirety! I get to speak to her like old friends – through her heart and conscience; a word really didn’t need to be spoken, and still doesn’t. Kind of weird I know, but in the coolest of ways. Perhaps the best way I can relate is how the Messiah put it,
“Rivers of Living Water Flow from Within.”
My translation – Eternal Life. It just keeps fascinating! So thankful she led and taught us how to “Be”!
I’m convinced she will thoroughly enjoy her eternal life. I’ll be thinking of her as I look to the heavens from Slice O Heaven. I’ll cherish her love and enjoy the thoughts of her walking with the Messiah and the true believers in mankind’s history. What a sense of relief, love, awe, wonderment, and marvel she must feel right now! It must be like going home. What a place many are longing to see – and “Be” – someday!
May she have prevailing winds and following seas, and may she always be in the Good Lord’s Wheelhouse – Where we may find her!
Our love and life are eternal because the Messiah’s love and life is eternal. To quote our Messiah: “When the fig tree is in full bloom, the season is nigh.” From the Messiah and my mother to you and I:
““The prophecies are batting 1000%. The fig tree is almost full. Change in season is very near. The Messiah is The Way, The Truth, and the Life. All His ways are roads that lead to love and peace. He is the doorway that allows us to enter heaven and eternal life. It is the only way.””
Thank you both for sharing your love and wisdom! I will always love You/you with all my heart, all my soul, and all my mind!
A Tribute to a True Blessing: My Momma [AMEN & AMEN]
PS, PS: Should you be listening in Mom, if you’d like through your mysterious ways, feel free to tap into my website. There, I’ve offered a link to a video soundtrack I created in your honor. It will forever allow me to remember you in song, spirit, and of course – stay the course. The link is at “SLICEOHEAVEN7.COM.” I think you will dig it Mom…;)
*Will all of you here and those attending via electronics please stand and join me in prayer (Psalm 23-KJV). Psalm 23 is one of many psalms written by King David. It is a prayer about life, how to view it through trusting in the Lord…
“You are our Shepherd; we shall not want. You maketh us to lay down in green pastures: You leadeth us beside the still waters. You restoreth our soul: You leadeth us in the paths of righteousness for Your name’s sake. Yea, though we walk through the valley of the shadow of death, we will fear no evil: For thou art with us; thy rod and thy staff they comfort us. Thou preparest a table before us in the presence of our enemies: Thou anointest our heads with oil; our cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow us all the days of our life: and we will dwell in the house of the Lord FOR EVER.” [Amen]
While we are all standing:
Since my Mom did this for me on many occasions, I’d like to return the honor. Will you all help me in giving her my first and everlasting standing ovation for the superstar she mysteriously and righteously was chosen and chose to – “Be”!!
*Music Soundtrack: “BE” by Neil Diamond
BERNICE SHERMAN- Be Righteous & Nice – God Loves You ;)
We can rise above with Your divine love…
Looking through the lens of the biblical mind, we are blessed to be kindred, and handsomely known in Your image as Mankind.
We aim to summon Your divine love, the type that is mined down in the heart, and in Your heaven above.
Our world has become polarized, absolute truth sectionalized, politicized, privatized, and pluralized. It truly will be fascinating, the day You do decide, to re-enter Your domain in a uniquely grand surprise.
With eyes to see, we are aware of a terrible evil, a spirit who is fighting its destinies peril. Its jaws and claws are extremely vile, but for those in the know it has already lost its trial.
Although it is a spirit that is truths treason, and toxically brazen, as the story is told, You will abolish it in a mindful season, in a lake that will be molten hot and promised to be a-blazin’.
As our savior, we are assured it won’t be long, ‘til You do Your image a miraculous favor, and allow us to join You for one thousand years of beautiful song.
Please Lord, if You would be so profound, engage the lost so that they will be found. Take our troubles and turn them around. Also, to be so kind, by putting our feet on Your sacred ground.
There is a brave new yearnin’, and it is surely real for many and me. Because you see, it does matter how we view the world a-turnin’, we want the best for all humanity.
In many circles we walk blind to what we believe and therefore ultimately achieve, leaving the majority in a massively deceptive and hopeless quandary.
If Mankind’s diaspora is prophetically running out of time, and our generation is living on a borrowed dime, it is Your light within the sublime, that inspires us to continue to be Your Son’s-shine.
To the person who likens themselves and others to Your image, we reach out to You to assist, in our beguiled and mysterious pilgrimage.
We seek truth in all its glory, and care to see our destinies as one great, miraculous, and awe-inspiring big fish story.
It is You we seek to know, hear, and see. So please, we love and praise You Lord, and ask for forgiveness, kindness, grace, love, and empathy.
Your angels, prophets, shepherds, and even Van Morrison might implore, if we let You, the life we adore, we’ll get Your blessings, even through the bars of a little metaphor.
We can rise above with Your divine love.
Growing up in a small northern Los Angeles suburb, I did not find myself around water much, aside from that in the tub, or a friend’s swimming pool, or when the beach called. When I did find myself on a large body of water, like Lake Casitas, or Cachuma, or Castaic, or the Pacific Ocean, it was not until I was strong enough to hold on to the side rails of the boat we were on, able to cast accurately and adequately a lure to unsuspecting largemouth bass, and if the desired strike came…“never let go of the rod,”
At about five years of age, I can recall holding spools of fishing line by the ends of a Number 2 pencil as it was inserted in the core of the spool. My father would wind fresh new fishing line onto the many reels he used on a weekly basis. You see, he was a bass fishing junky and was a member of a club who started bass fishing tournaments in the mid to late 1960s. I’d usually sit for about an hour, holding the spools as he would meticulously wind line onto his reels. Even if Monday Night Football was begging for my attention, my eyes followed the technique of winding line.
As a very young child I rationalized this practice of winding on fresh line on reels that caught fish the previous outing as vital to having success on the next outing. I also rationalized that this practice had a direct relationship with the success of putting food on the table. It was worth taking the time to change out used line because trial and error suggested there were too many lost hook-ups from damaged line. Abrasion, burns, nicks, and stretched line all had a tendency to show their destructive mentality - sometimes when it mattered most.
This said, he certainly lost a fair share; however, our home’s freezer illustrated why the practice paid off; it was always full. Hence, at that age I reasoned our family would never go hungry. My father’s attention to detail would support the claim, “change your line as often as necessary.”
In my youthful exuberance to enjoy what the natural world offered, it did not go unnoticed that if my father was drawn to water, then it must be a tremendous pastime.
I loved watching him maintenance his reels, tackle, the boat, then carefully the way he paid attention to detail relating to casting. He’d often go out into the backyard and practice casting into our swimming pool. He’d put a hoop at one end, then stand at the opposite end. I’d marvel at his skill on how many casts landed in the hoop. He knew exactly how to temper the cast to the weights of the lures he was testing.
This knowledge was tremendously helpful when he was fishing fresh-water bass tournaments in the western part of the United States. His attention to detail in all aspects put him on the trophy stand of a few of the early bass fishing tournaments, held in the late 1960s to the mid-1980s.
Fortunately for me, my mom was busy taking care of my other siblings so when I turned seven years old, I finally got the chance to be one of my father’s fishing buddies. About once a month on a Saturday, he and I would pre-fish lakes that would be home to some of the scheduled tournaments. I loved that he would have the boat trailer hitched the night before, pre-pack our sack lunch, drive while I slept, buy breakfast, find the fish, and best of all, cook the fish when we got home.
I on the other hand, tried to mimic his technique, understand his knowledge and reasoning, and put a big smile on his face when he saw the bend in my fishing rod. Candidly, it was that much fun for me too. Furthermore, I was great on the cleanup crew. This was our little way of rewarding the big fish for the day. LOL, it would happen regularly. Barrel-Line dominated in this context.
When I was in college, Barrel-Line invited me to accompany him on a fishing trip that took us into salt-water, the Pacific Ocean. There would not be a barrel line in this giant body of water. It was my first fishing trip in the deep blue sea. Our desired catch for the trip was Albacore Tuna. Up until this time in my life I had only fished in lakes and in rivers. The strength of the fishing line I used was never any heavier line than 10-12-pound test monofilament. On this day of fishing I was using 25-pound test line, pulling with all my strength.
The battles that day with 20-30-pound albacore tuna left a tremendous impression.
I mean, this tuna two step they talked about was about as fun a way of fishing as I could imagine. Our appetites were satisfied in so many ways.
Several years later I had the chance to fish with my father and a few of his fishing friends on a 32-foot, offshore fishing vessel called a Skipjack. It was Labor-Day, 1998. From the time we first stepped onto the boat until the time we finished cleaning the sensational catch of yellowtail, calico bass, and yellowfin tuna it was twenty-eight hours later. My memory is of spectacular fishing.
We started in Long Beach harbor, fished Catalina and San Clemente Islands, and returned to the dock a few hours later than the time we left the previous night. We caught a variety of game fish that cemented my love for the sport. Truly I tell you…I WAS HOOKED. This day of fishing ranks up there towards the top five days ever spent out on the water. The memory of this specific Labor Day will stay with me for a lifetime.
For many years thereafter, I would fish about once a month on the overnight boats that took anglers out to Catalina Island for Calico bass fishing. We would oftentimes catch yellowtail and an occasional white seabass or halibut.
I think I fell in love with white seabass fishing on a full moon night on the back side of Catalina. There was something so special about being on the water, fishing with live squid (candy to the seabass), and watching the full moon rise over the island’s mountainous structure. There was an eerie glow in the already dark water that was gently slapping the anchored sportfishing boat we occupied.
As if the wolves of the ocean who came to do damage to the forage that rose from the depths to eat and get a moon tan wasn’t enough entertainment and excitement, the auspiciousness of this setting in the predawn hours simply ignited a passion that must be DNA associated.
Having grown up in a family whose father was a teacher and coach, my young worldly view emphasized sports. Acquiring a competitive attitude, instincts, and savvy was always top priority. In context, I have always been shorter and lighter than most I competed with in sports. This physical fact always inspired me to see if I could compete with competitors that were bigger, stronger, and maybe faster. In other words, could I still be competitive regardless of size and weight?
The parable that comes to mind is the classic example from our world’s historical record of David vs. Goliath. This said, as it relates to sport, I had always got in the ring with bigger opponents than myself, even as a youngster I’d find myself in a boxing ring with bigger athletes. Getting in the ring in this parable would be to take on a yellowfin tuna that had every bit of weight, height, and brawn that I had. I paid the price on many occasions playing organized tackle football; the price of pain that accompanies when a bigger, stronger, faster athlete plants his helmet in your ribcage and drives your face mask a foot into the turf. Nevertheless, I was willing to see if a giant yellowfin would do the same, or could I win a battle, here and there?
In context, I had not fished for giant yellowfin tuna in my youthful years because I was enjoying fishing for the smaller class of species closer to home. It was no mystery that limited vacation time, family and funding played into the decision making. I had fished San Diego’s fleet often for tuna on one to seven day trips, with one 10-day length trip; however, to get to the big giants of the class, one had to board trips in the 16-18 day category. Starting in the early 1990s, San Diego’s sportfishing fleet started to offer fishermen trips in which passengers had a choice to ride on the vessel from San Diego to Cabo San Lucas (CSL), a three-day journey, or travel by plane. The length of the trip and days on the water was reduced by six days, choosing air travel. Sincerely, this offering became a game changer for me.
This said, Doug Taylor, a very close friend for nearly thirty-five years, continually inspired me with his “BIG” yellowfin fishing stories. In modern sportfishing terms, Doug is what many call a “Long Ranger.” This will be his nickname always to me.
A Long Ranger is a fisherman that gets on ‘made-for-big-fish’ sport fishing vessels that take anglers hundreds of miles out to sea. The early Long Rangers would fish on old military vessels that had been stripped and customized for stand-up fishing. Those rickety old vessels paled in comparison to the vessels anglers are blessed to fish today. Regardless of the craft, Long-Rangers of past and present have similar common denominators; they are skilled, highly motivated, and find great pleasure in tangling “stand-up” style with truly giant (200-pound plus) fish. Most, if not all are also driven by a record book…a chance to catch the next stand-up caught world record yellowfin tuna. Personally, I don’t fish for records, I fish because I love it; nonetheless, I’ll surely enjoy it if it is meant to be…
Moving along, I have several old movie reels (1950’s-1960’s) of tuna fishermen who fished in Southern California and Mexican waters. I love observing their ‘ancient’ (LOL) techniques, many still work today. In this context, while observing these old tuna fishermen and their practices, the fact that I understood their passion leaves me with a hunch and a question, could I have been a fisherman in some past life experience?
Does this passion to be in the wild, hunt and catch a desired species, combined with the knowledge and wisdom that comes through the educational process mean I might have a bad case of fishing-OCD that is DNA associated? Oh, I am betting others would contend such a scenario. It’s all good.
In relationship to fish DNA in my body’s cells, I’ve often wondered if there is by chance a somewhat coincidental twist of irony. For instance, could it be possible that I was on the beach two thousand years ago when Jesus asked a few fishermen to follow? LOL. How else does one explain the thrill of catching fish that can be traced back to a DNA association? ;)
That said, the Long Ranger (16+ trips of 16 days or more at sea) phoned to invite me to accompany him on a trip into uncharted waters. Well, uncharted by me in this regard.
If there is one pastime that I enjoy doing in my free time that takes my mind off the rigors of life’s climb better than anything else, that pastime would have to be offshore fishing. The Long Ranger was asking me to join him on a journey that would be the longest time I would spend on the water (eleven days), and into a fish mecca, known as the Revillagigedo Islands. My father had not been, nor had my grandfather. Grandpa, may he rest in peace, also loved fishing.
So, to pursue my dream and goal (to catch a fish bigger than me) the timing of the trip was perfect. I made the decision to accompany and to explore a fishing wonderland, a “promised land.” I was accepting of a personal challenge, tremendously blessed and excited to be…
Going, going…Long Range Sportfishing
YOU HELP THOSE WHO BELIEVE IN YOU
“If you let him, the life you love, you get the blessings, from above.”
(Van Morrison: Whenever God Shines His Light)
I’ve been really excited to get to this section in the Conduit. Many have no concept of the idea that You help those that believe in You because they live in a matrix that is all about exclusivity and individual rights. A matrix that builds apotheosis mindsets. I recall many times my parents or coaches preaching this saying; “You work in mysterious ways.” Hence, believe, take a step forward, and You will take a step alongside.
In light of the fact I caught on many years ago, I thought I’d go down this trail of documenting some of Your miracles, or rather miracles You bestowed upon our species. Ironically, some chose to never believe, so this again is my attempt to explain my disposition…
To begin, on a macro scale, I consider this Earth we live on and the universe/world we occupy to be a miracle. Really, the design and the concept is one that only a genius the likes of You could create. In my humble opinion, if science would like me to accept their findings regarding the “something-from-nothing” Big Bang argument, or that because of gravity something can become of nothing, then explain who designed that?
Quite frankly, I wished most of these quantum and evolutionary brilliant minds worked from a premise that starts with You. This would be a miracle in its own right.
I truly believe that when we take a “micro” view of who we are in regard to organic, sentient, intelligent, and conscious beings that You could miraculously give us all these characteristics and directions in something the size we can only see in a microscope, the atom. Really, 3.5 billion letters, the longest word in any language to make our hearts a heart, two lungs, and our minds an eternal being (to name a few) does not just happen by chance and evolution.
For You to establish us in Your image through a factory the size of an atom, in parable a sentient computer and software of this magnitude, is about as miraculous as imagination can take us. Science, which I love, can prove many things (see: 9/11-Experts speak out); but, cannot explain how miraculous this little factory is, one of trillions to the power of trillions, to make-up Your world, Word, and superior intelligence. Some would argue we came from nothing, then a big bang, then from stardust, then monkeys, then…
Question, how do we start from nothing and become something? Answer, intelligent design. Sarcasm intended, it would also be miraculous were science to explain how inorganic (stardust) becomes organic (all living matter) without divine/Your intervention. Furthermore, explain the software’s designer.
I consider Your conversations with Moses to be a miracle. I mean, forty thousand people enslaved for seventy years. It took a miracle to eradicate that type of existence without an armed rebellion. Plagues, come on, miraculously thought out!
If the plagues were not a significant enough reminder, we retell the story of the exodus every year on Passover. The idea that You parted the Red Sea is absolutely miraculous. If those around at the time didn’t believe in Your divine interest, they sure did when the sea was parted…
On a more cynical note Lord: Don’t You find it “miraculous” or comical that from the private business sector in America that Elon Musk sent one of his Tesla Roadsters to do a big donut around our sun? It is only ninety-three million miles away (?), and then arrive back to Earth in millions of years? Funny thing about that little space traveling Roadster. They “accidentally” only equipped the craft with a battery life of few hours to operate the camera, and believe it or not, the gorgeous red paint job did not show one mark of heat-stress as it passed through the Van Allen Belt of over 4,000 degrees (f) temperature and intense radiation. I guess Mr. Musk must also be a magician.
First, he needed to not only have us onlookers believe he could get his convertible red buggy through the Van Allen Belt, but then penetrate the Firmament. Second, the powder coating Musk used held up better than the millions of tons of steel that melted at a much lower temperature during the 9/11 Twin Towers catastrophe in New York City? Go figure??? As Big fish stories go…Oh my again.
The miraculous idea that You would have an army of Stars is not so surprising considering these Stars must have been followers of Your Commandments. With the super power they possess, this could only be attributed to the super power they showed while on Your Earth’s surface. They did not fall prey to demonic influences and participated as best they could within Your kingdom and playing field (those little ol’ Ten Commandments).
It seems miraculous that You would design such a structure for mankind to create and live Your vision - that a selective few could not penetrate, even with atomic devices, the canopy that protects our world.
I certainly find it miraculous how You created this world we live in over the time-span of seven days. Really six, but who’s counting considering on the seventh You took the day off. Ironically, most do not consider the “day off” important so they chose to work through it in this modern capitalistic society.
I know, I know; let’s give us the benefit of the doubt because the Mandela Effect has had its claws in all of us and pagan pride was/is rearing its ugly head…but…we’ll get there…I just know it…I love the Sabbath! It truly is a great reward for a hard week’s effort.
The miracle in context is that You gave us the day off. That almost seems unpalatable given our current financial position as a whole. We’re twenty-one trillion dollars in debt financially as a country, and no sign of that being reduced anytime soon. If You had given us eight days in a week, due to financial constraints, we would work all eight. The pagan entity is making sure we do not honor the Sabbath. Survival is replacing the day’s off. It’s fact. It’s so tough to break from its claws…but it MUST be done. Seventy years of purgatory is historical proof. Israel paid a very, very harsh penalty for ignoring your sabbaths and years of jubilee!
It is a miracle that I have been awakened from a matrix mind-warp; hopefully in time to share the results of great re-research and have others see Your vision.
It surely is miraculous that You would send Your Son down here to try to get the record straight, and/or move humanity along to a more ethical and spiritual existence. The outcome is debatable at this stage in human existence; however, the fact that Jesus’ virgin birth was a game plan You designed stands on its own as a miracle. Knowledge and technology were nowhere on the same playing field at that time.
The rise of Jesus after his death was certainly miraculous. What a sight it must have been for those elitists as well all humanity to see You lift Your Son back into Your heavenly quarters. For those within his astonishing presence, I’m certain their jaws were on their chest during the occurrence. Pure marvel and awe!
On a side note, when you get a moment Lord, can You please shed some light on why my Jewish brethren refuse to accept Your Son as the Messiah? I mean, in his book, Isaiah, a devout member of the Jewish faith, prophesied three hundred years after King David, that You would send Your Son, Jesus. In his estimate - seven hundred years from the prophecy. He wasn’t being a modern-day Nostradamus. No, he was telling the future generations of his people what Your plan entailed. Can we all rely on the source, believe it?
I would consider it a miracle that some of the Jewish population that had been exiled actually found their way back to Your “promised land.” This in itself is a miracle, because I exist.
I also find it miraculous that a group of rebels would try to ascend to Your lofty heights by building a tower a mile and a half high. To organize such a plot to dethrone You and get all those followers to buy into it is truly miraculous. Your solution to the greed and want was a sign of absolute genius and a miracle in its own right; sending a message to all humanity.
Is it me, or do any others find it unbelievably miraculous that You would open up Your oceans from beneath, unveil the Firmament canopy and allow the sky to rain for forty days and forty nights? Does anyone think it not genius to wipe the human/bio-engineered class of species off the face of this Earth because our Creator had enough of his image getting defaced?
Anyone else find it miraculous that our Creator has not done the same to our civilization considering the demonic nature into which we have evolved? His patience with us is miraculous in its own right.
I find it a miracle that with all the great scientists and historians who roam this great surface we inhabit that it has taken this long to change the premises from which we have been taught over these past several hundred years.
I find it miraculous that a country containing some wonderful, great, bright, affable, surprisingly balanced individuals have allowed themselves to be funneled/led down a path that subliminally has its population spoofed. Many live the perceived reality because they are so locked into the Authority’s program. The matrix the present world lives in is massively binding; therefore, many are participating or playing on the wrong team…we just don’t realize it!
Imagine doing a corkscrew maneuver on the ridge of Mt Tyndall at 14,000’ elevation, exposing the face of ones’ body from the rock one is clinging to, to open space and a 2,000’ free-fall, using a blind finger pull and toe grip…then with a pull and a hop onto a thin trail. I still get queasy and with goosebumps thinking about the miracle of You and Mr. Tagert helping me to accomplish such a risky feat…for the simple thrill of signing the summit log.
I would want to say that my two children are miracles. Each was born with all the tools needed to live out Your vision; they are priceless!!
If the path to creating miracles starts the way Coach Wooden advised, “the best things happen to the people who make the best of the things that happen,” then I would have to be inspired to share the success of “the secret.” As a miracle, I put it out there to the universe and to You Lord, while staring out into the starlit evening in the backyard of the home I once called my temple, that I wanted to have my path cross with a woman whose love was real and who appreciated a spiritual experience within the relationship. Thank You!!! This breath of freshness, purity, love, and divine interest is as sweet as Tupelo Honey and as cool as any angel You cared to ever have cross my path!
Would it not be just to suggest that many sports contests end in somewhat of a miracle? For example, I’ve witnessed some athletic accomplishments that had all in attendance looking up to the heavens, knowing You had something to do with the outcome. I know it’s crazy to think that You prefer one team over another; yet, we are constantly reminded as sports fans that anything can happen in a contest. It is vitally important to tame the emotions until the final whistle blows, the wall is touched, or the checkered flag is waved.
The 1980 USA hockey team pulled off the miracle of miracles as they upset the world’s best team in the semifinal round of the Olympic Games, then later winning the finals. In Al Michaels words, “Do you believe in miracles?”
In sports; I witnessed a swimmer competing on my father’s high school team win an individual event and help his team win a city championship from the Lane 8 position. As events go in championship contests, there wasn’t a person in the arena who thought this Lane 8 swimmer could beat the field. Knowing that my father did not want to have this swimmer shave prior to the final event (the finals), it was almost miraculous he timed well enough to make it to the top eight swimmers contending for a title.
When the gun sounded to start the event, all eyes were on the top swimmers in lanes 4 and 5. Then, by the turn, all eyes shifted to Lane 8. A city record was the pace; Lane 8 was driving the field. When the mass of eight bodies came to the finish, all within tenths of a second of one another; the Lane 8 miracle was sealed. I came out of my chair and nearly flew into the pool. I can remember this Lane 8 experience like I remember David taking down Goliath.
It would not surprise me if those in attendance during David’s clash with the titan didn’t think it would take anything short of a miracle for him to succeed. So cool of You Lord to be in his corner!!
I know I can speak for an entire university, well make that two universities: It was miraculous that a poor, under-armed, under-skilled, and less ranked sorry excuse for a team was able to knock off the #2 team in the nation on the final Saturday of the college football regular season.
For those in the know, the numbers are 13-9. The good guys tallied the 13; meaning the bad guys got taken down by a satanic number. With the chance at playing for a national title with one “easy” win, the big bad giants of Troy got bit.
Every single person who can claim some stake in the cross-town rivalry in Pasadena’s fabled Rose Bowl that day can say that that game had miracle written all over it. I was standing mid-stadium, about the forty-yard line, twenty-five rows up with my youngest son. His tears of joy with the scoreboard in the backdrop were priceless.
Thinking along the lines of great games; I would have to suggest it was a miracle that my little brother and I won as many games as we did as youngsters, now knowing he was born with a brain tumor and was basically playing injured since his first breath. I love the miracle he was and the heroism he possessed. A true blessing and miracle to a fan like myself.
Half joking, I thought it was a miracle I could hang onto a pass thrown by one of the greatest passers of the past 100 years. Let me set the stage…
The football team at the high school I attended was practicing one morning during summer school when a tall, 6’3”, skinny (maybe 160 pounds), blond-haired kid walked onto our practice field. Many on the team knew each other from Pop Warner, youth tackle football leagues, and from school. None of us knew who this new kid was.
Our coach, renowned for his “spread/west coast offense” called the team together in the middle of the field to introduce us to the new kid on the block. His father was the new head football coach at the local university; moving the family from the State of Washington down to Southern California.
When the coach asked the question, “What position do you want to play,” this potential Hall of Fame prospect said; “I was a tight end playing youth football, but I would like to give the quarterback position a try.”
A couple of my longtime teammates who played the same position were really good, so I was not expecting much in way of supplanting their hierarchy.
As luck would have it, I was a receiver on the team and found myself in a drill where I would catch this newcomer’s first and second throws. On his second throw, a little five yard down and out, I found myself squeezing the ball on the back end to make the catch. I can recall my hands feeling blistered from making the catch.
The last time I had felt that kind of sting was when I was a water boy for my father’s football team prior to enrolling in high school and had the opportunity to catch passes from a player that went on to play at Stanford University and the San Francisco 49rs.
Considering that at the time my father was still coaching for a rival high school, I could not wait to tell him about the newcomer. That evening upon our return home our conversation turned to football. I told him, ‘I think our school has just acquired the next Guy Benjamin.” Smiling of course, since we were rivals… “his name is John Elway. He will be a Hall of Fame quarterback someday.” Seriously, my father will bear witness to those comments. As miracles go, I was delighted to have caught a few of his practice throws but I ended up being disappointed when I broke my ankle and leg prior to being able to participate in real game action.
And, also as miracles go…John was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame upon the conclusion of his career. That prophecy did bear fruit. He literally was a miracle waiting to happen. Just ask those pesky ol Cleveland Browns about “The Drive.” Just ask the many teams who relinquished the ball to him in the closing moments of many highly competitive contests. Just ask any coach trying to defend and defeat him why he is considered one of the all-time best. I saw that miracle waiting to happen and am so thankful I had an opportunity to get to know him and his magical characteristics. He wore number “7,” that had to be an influence! That’s his story and I’m sticking to it with him.
One last point regarding John and miracles: It was miraculous that after I beat him in a friendly game of ping pong that the paddle he threw across the table that stuck in the garage door didn’t stick in my head. Miraculous in that he missed his target. It did not happen often!
I take that back Lord, one more fun fact: Miraculously, John still owes me $50 from a bet we made many years ago. I say miraculously because the way in which we got to that end was a miracle in itself…
As many know, John was a fantastic three-sport athlete while he was in high school. Not only did he excel on the gridiron, his batting average was over 450, and his basketball skills may have led him into the NBA as a guard. It was these skills that are the subject of the little bet…
Both John and I played on our high school basketball teams, I was a “C” player and John was a “B” player while we were in the 11th and 10th grade, respectively. Both teams were coached by the same individual; just as both the JV and Varsity teams were coached by another individual. Considering the C and B teams practiced together, the two of us and another friend-a senior at the time, often played poker after school and before basketball practice started…
On this particular day, I had won $50 from John at our buddy’s kitchen table poker parlor. I could not have been any happier considering I wanted to ask this really pretty girl out and now had the money, well an I-O-U, anyway. Upon finishing our stretching exercises our coach told all the starters from both teams to go into the woman’s gym and shoot one hundred free-throws. I grabbed a ball off the rack and ran into the gym to get a center court hoop to shoot at. John followed shortly thereafter. This is when the miracles began that would be forever etched in my memory.
As John runs into the gym and saw me under the far basket he yells out, “Hey Bryan, fifty dollars, all or nothing if I make a half-court shot?”
I was feeling so confident that I would have $100 in three seconds I said, “sure!”
John took a couple dribbles to half court then launched a rainbow of a shot. It was so high up I thought it might hit the gymnastic cables dangling forty feet above our heads. As we both looked on, the rainbow miraculously hit nothing but net on its way through the hoop. Needless to say; John started laughing hysterically. Then he gives me that look that says, “I can do magic.” Since John was not known to walk on water just yet, the thought he might later in life certainly occurred…
A little shaken but still having the resolve of a David and a Maccabean warrior, and although I had nowhere near his gifts, a love of sports was very close to my heart too. I offered back; ”$50 from half court, You want that deal?” He’s still laughing, thinking he’s going to have won $100 in about two minutes, replying; “good luck, you’re going to need it.”
I took a couple of dribbles to half court then bank swished the shot. He was screaming again as I lay laughing until my ribs hurt on the center court line thanking You!
Still down fifty dollars now, John was in a bit of dismay. He would not quit as many know. He begrudgingly gathered his ball, which he chucked up to the sky in disgust, or was that in amazement. Then he licks his shooting fingers and calls another fifty dollar shot. I helplessly grumble…then foolishly agree.
“Bank swish” was John’s money-ball call while it was in the air. Sure enough…the backboard and twine sang an improbable tune. Needless to say, John was screaming wildly with joy. That boy sure enjoys winning, as we all got to know…
Miraculously, that was three half court shots made consecutively. Unheard of even against a no betting line.
In light of the ridiculous odds, I was not finished. Definitely perturbed with John dancing around the floor, smiling, laughing, while fifty bucks was dangling within my reach, I had to attempt another!
The ball was in my court, I wasn’t backing down…even to this future Hall of Fame Quarterback. The reward, if accomplished, was burning a hole in my pocket. I could taste that nice dinner out…
Besides; chuckle, I had You in my corner.
One dribble and I launched a real rainbow with perfect backspin. To see that thing of beauty swish through the hoop was like watching “The Logo”, Jerry West, hit a game winner against the Knicks with no time left on the clock. I was in shock to be honest; however, the shot felt good the second it left my hand.
To say John was dejected would be a gross understatement. He wanted more action. Unfortunately, that’s when the fun and games ended.
Our observant coach walked into the gym as the fourth half-court shot brought the house down. He verbally called out our friend who was screaming with disbelief, who happened to be one of the eye-witnesses to this small miracle, John, and myself. He asked us to remove ourselves from practice and go into the locker room. Upon his arrival we simply could not stop laughing. He admonished us for our leadership ability as the rest of the members of the team stood watching. In awe I might add, nobody had ever seen anything like it. It was supernatural, if one cared, from my objective opinion.
He asked us what was so funny, and we reluctantly told him the reason.
It was a small miracle the three of us did not get kicked off the team, and an even bigger miracle that we hit four bombs with money riding on every shot!
So John, should you find your eyes reading this “Big Fish Story” and/or our paths cross once again in life I imagine You will either offer the cash with interest or double or nothing the bet. Perhaps on the hoop in your backyard. Consider me game! Story aside, I hope you and your family are well! Hope you enjoyed the memory as much as I did.
Miracles come in many different packages!
Before I get to some very cool miracles related to Big fish, literally, there are a few more I can recall…
For a short distance runner with some quickness and good hand-eye coordination, I could play almost any sport with some success.
Note: Ninety-nine percent of the time you would also find me bringing up the rear of the line-up. Tall guys to short guys was/is standard.
I had played three sports in high school, and prior to enrolling I swam for the local park club team. I always admired those athletes who could go the distance, as in a marathon distance. This distance would represent another David vs. Goliath parable.
So with some training and prior to my first child, I miraculously competed in two Los Angeles Marathons, 92’ and 93’. I say miraculously because the training was treacherous, and the run was even more so. Although I finished both marathons in a slower than anticipated time, it was still a miracle in my mind because both were noteworthy. In 92’ Muhammad Ali was the starter, and a great friend jumped in at mile 21 to inspire for few miles. What a blessing it is that he is my friend/brother!! In 93’, it was 107 degrees (f) on the course that second Sunday in March. I thought I was going to die upon completion as many runners were given ambulance rides from heat exhaustion and dehydration. And I was in better shape than the prior year. Had I not…I will not go there.
In any regard, it’s a miracle I finished and didn’t die. Thank You. I promised myself I will not run another…promise!
I’d have to say that the results of going in for a 54-year-old colonoscopy turned out to be miraculous. After the procedure, barely awake from the anesthesia, the physician tells me he made an appointment for me to see a surgeon the following Thursday morning. It was a Tuesday at the time. When I asked why, he suggested that I needed to have a cat-scan to visually see the inside of my body from the neck down to my colon prior to my visit with the surgeon. The idea of visiting a surgeon on such short notice only suggested one thing to a chicken of the hospital like me, they get paid to cut people open.
I followed instructions and showed up on time. Considering it was only two days from the time I was under the colonoscopy eye of technology, nerves flourished, and I was whole heartedly concerned.
The surgeon, a very cool gentleman who was probably half my age and ran ultra-marathons had me take a seat next to his monitor. He started the video from the top of my neck. It was a good thing he did because had he started above my neck; I think he would have uncovered a bunch of loose marbles. Just saying…I was scared.
He moved the video forward as the camera scanned through my lungs and down to my lower abdomen. He noted I had an enlarged set of lungs and heart. Aside from that, everything was on the small size as it pertains to the average size of organs. I guess that’s a good thing…who knows at this point?
Then he gets toward the end of the colon and freezes the frame. With his handy dandy red laser light he pointed to a white object on what appeared to be the outside of my appendix. He asked if I knew what that little body part was and what I imagined this white spot to be. Of course, I told him I had no idea. “That’s what you get paid for Doc,” I believe were my comments.
He suggested that I was a walking miracle; in that, my appendix was completely shut down and needed to be treated as an extreme emergency. He said he had ordered surgery to remove it the following day, Friday, at 6am. This was “life or death,” as I received his message.
“But Doc, I walked in here a perceived healthy man. You want to cut me open in the morning. I don’t even have a Will filled out.”
He suggested, “write one down tonight and I’ll see you bright and early tomorrow. The nurse will give you instructions. Get a good nights sleep if you can…”
With that, I hustled back home, scribbled a few words down that would act as a Will, and started praying to You Lord. I was so thankful this little body part hadn’t burst yet; nonetheless, I was so nervous at the thought of going under the knife. I know the surgeon did this arthroscopic type procedure; yet, he was entering my body in three holes. Any slip of the hand/instrument and the sucker would burst. No, I wasn’t worried…uhggg!
Upon coming to after surgery, my man the miracle Doc ran a biopsy on the little devil and reported good news. “You are a very, very lucky guy. We got what we went in for and you will be fine. There was nothing to be concerned about regarding the white material on the outside of the appendix, it turned out to be benign. I’m headed to Houston to run an ultra-triathlon with my wife. If I make it…I’ll see you back here in a week. Get some rest and do not push it until I see you again.”
“Ahh Houston, I mean Doc, thank you very much for saving my life and good luck in the race…My money says you will finish.” Barely a smile would follow; yet, a definite sigh of relief. I must have prayed to You Lord enough to help in all regards. Thank You!! I know You have to be in my corner. Your signs are everywhere!
As I’ve expressed above, getting the message from You and my little brother the other day atop the mountain road can be considered a miracle of sorts. I mean, I’ve used a compass on many backpacking trips and have literally driven over a million miles in a car and have never seen a compass act like it did that memorable Sunday morning. To one who is a teammate of “all things” being miraculous this may seem slight in comparison to some miracles You help perform; yet, I am not at all against even the slightest of hints of one, as I know it’s Your way of fulfilling a proud journey.
You know I’m going to suggest, “keep them coming Lord!” I am always so, so grateful and appreciative of any sign You send my way!
I know I can go on and on and on regarding simple little miracles that take place on a daily basis; however, to conclude this chapter it might be enjoyable to recall a couple fishing stories that I have deemed miraculous.
Let’s see if You and the reader agree…
After a very long, late August day of practicing real estate, losing three listing opportunities to agents undercutting the commission I suggested, and feeling the heat from door knocking for six hours, I decided to take a rod, reel, and some lucky lures down to one of my favorite beach communities where I would soak my heated thoughts away, casting into the great big pond called the Pacific Ocean. I was fishing along a shoreline that was home to very prominent kings. These homes would be of kings to the financial, business, and entertainment professions, as well as home to fish kings of the underwater world.
The real estate along this gorgeous stretch of shoreline is lined with multi-million-dollar castles on one side of the sand and multi-natural rock structures beneath the surface of the water on the other side.
As I cast my lucky lure and walked for about two hours, I circled back to finish in the same place I started. It was still a mile walk back to my car and I was getting hungry. The sunset on the horizon was a thing of beauty, with big white cotton candy type clouds dotting the sky. There was a warm breeze coming off the land; yet, the two feet of water I was standing in was refreshing to say the least.
On this last cast, as miracles would happen, the lips of a giant king of the underwater world found their way onto my lucky lure. When I say giant, I mean giant compared to the tackle I was using.
I had brought with me a very light line outfit, one rated at #4-10 lbs while I fished #8 test line. I could tell immediately the predator was large. In fact, this was like taking a knife to an AK-47 shootout. I wouldn’t do either; however, the 8 lb. test made for a real gamy battle. Neither one of us had any control during the fifty-minute fight.
When I felt that infamous tap-tap on the end of my line I was really excited. The fish grabbed my offering and proceeded to head for Catalina Island. I ran up the beach, trying to conserve the remaining line on my nearly empty reel and then cut back down the beach as this bruiser thought he’d catch a few of the big waves breaking just outside in the surf zone.
Back and forth I would run, gaining a little line here and a little line there. In the final stages of battle, I saw this giant swim horizontally in a seven foot plus wave. I think my jaw dropped far enough to almost choke on the white water that was breaking around my chest. Holding the rod as high in the air as I could, taking wave after pounding wave; the kindness of the Pacific finally offered a swell that allowed me to bring the beast onto the sand. It literally fell off the top of the crest of the last wave; crashing to the sand about three feet from the waterline as it retreated.
I ran down to the fish, wrapped my hand in a white-knuckle grip around its tail and hauled the warrior up to higher sand and safer ground.
One of the local kings came down to the sand from his castle’s backyard to ask a few questions and take some photos with his cell phone camera. He mentioned that he had really enjoyed watching the battle and asked what type fish it was. I paused, not knowing exactly who this king was and suggested, “it’s a fish out of water,” while brimming grandly.
I gave him a business card while he snapped a few photos. I would have preferred him wanting me to help him sell his kingdom, this multi-million-dollar estate on the sands of paradise; however, I’ll graciously accept a photo and the memory of his presence. Maybe he’ll call at a further date and offer me a part in his upcoming movie, Young Man of the Sea… ya never know? Recreating this scene though will take divine intervention…
The beast on the sand wasn’t the white sea bass I thought I saw swimming while hooked in one of the massive cresting waves. No, this was a giant saltwater Striped Bass. I’ve never caught one on this shoreline, or in the local lakes for that matter; however, it was a species I had to do some investigating on because this big guy, caught on #8 lb. test line may classify as a World Record… believe it or not!
The unofficial weight taken was captured at one of my favorite sushi restaurants. Mr. Stripe Striper hit the scale two hours after catch at twenty-five pounds. Oh boy, there’s that magical energy seven again, bringing good fortune in mystical ways (2+5=7).
The research on giant Stripers showed that this 25 pound warrior was nowhere close to being the largest Striper caught with rod and reel from a beach location. There were several fish over 50 lbs. caught from the shoreline on the east coast. What I did find out was that the research indicated this could very well have been the largest Striper ever caught on #8 mono on any coast of America that was not a landlocked or freshwater catch. Ironically this species can live in either fresh or saltwater.
Research indicated that records for line class do not exist on ocean caught Striped Bass. I would venture to guess, though, this very well could have been one of the few giants ever caught on this particular stretch of beach. As a native to the area and an avid fisherman I am quite certain no one has accomplished this feat, aside from maybe fisherman of the Chumash native American Indian tribe. Then again, the Indians would have had to use very elementary gear. With the jaws of destruction below the fish’s belly, my guess is they would not have had the right gear to do the job. Hard to prove this one.
As for miracles, this definitely was one because of all the many days I’ve spent trying to catch big fish using this line-class. This ranks up there with my personal best. Even if me and You Lord were the only ones to witness this catch, aside from the Backyard King and a few local surfers, I can derive a great deal of pride from it. It took a small miracle for the line to not snap or the hook to pull free from the sharp pointed claws of rocks beneath the fish’s belly, and then from the fish hurling itself out towards Catalina and through and over some really remarkable big waves.
Miracles come in many shapes, sizes, and forms. Once again, I’ll choose to see everything in a way that reveals the stamp You have put on it. A supernatural high five, a huge hug, and an I love You because I always want to let You know I am grateful for everything You enlighten me with! You really made this memorable and sensational!
Note: Should any readers care to know the exact location this feat took place; email me on the website listed in the reference section and I’ll be happy to direct you. If I can be of service by way of selling you some very expensive land along this location’s glorious stretch of beach, I’d be happy to assist in this regard as well. I’m looking forward to hearing from all you enthusiasts!
A final miracle associated fishing tale I can share with You and the reader is one in which I experienced the full gambit of emotion; an onslaught of sadness and happiness at the same time.
I mentioned the idea of taking a vessel out of one of the many ports here in Southern California earlier in the Conduit, well, this next story involves traveling via one of those cool vessels from San Diego’s fabled port, Fisherman’s Landing. Our destination on this seven day offshore long-range trip was a world-renowned fishing spot called Guadalupe Island.
The Island is located approximately 225 miles southwest of the famous landing and about the same distance from the coast of Mexico. The Island does not have many, if any now, full-time residents. It is a magnificent outcropping of land that some say creates its own weather patterns. For this particular trip I was excited to go because there was word from other long-range boats that some big fish, 100 plus-lbs., had been sighted recently at the Island.
Although fishing brings out a passion in me that I can’t attain in any other walk of life, I decided to pass on it if there were problems at home or with family battling old age or illness. In this particular case, my grandmother on my mother’s side was lying in a senior care facility succumbing to dementia and old age. My mother expressed that Grandma hadn’t opened her eyes in several days, and that if I wanted to say my last goodbyes, I would need to do so soon. The trip was scheduled to leave San Diego on a Monday and return the following Sunday.
On the previous Thursday I had a chance to go down to Grandma’s facility and speak to her. Considering her eyes had not opened for days I thought I would just see if I could cheer her up and see her eyes open one last time.
After walking in, verbally saying hello and kissing her on her cheek, there was no doubt my mother was right about the severity of her predicament. Grandma was a little bitty lady, and as pure a soul as one would ever find. I know she is with You Lord, she honored Your Commandments and her disposition was all the proof one would need. I do not think there was a mean bone in her body. She was stern for a bitty lady, especially running after me when I was devilish as a child with a broomstick above her head. LOL; however, she was genuinely grounded in You Lord… grounded in the right way.
In any event, after saying hello and kissing her, I then proceeded to tell her I was going to massage her feet like she would do for me when I was a small child and my feet were sore from playing ball all day long. As I began to rub her feet, I started telling her about this exciting trip I had planned and the visit to this renowned Island. My Grandpa was a fisherman too. I know, may he too rest in peace, he visited this island in his younger days and talked of the spectacular fishing he experienced when he was there. As Grandma lay motionless and barely breathing, my fingers messaging her warm feet, I asked her if she remembered Grandpa’s stories about Guadalupe Island. Without a reply, I just kept right on talking…
“Grandma; the trip will be leaving within a few days. I know You are not feeling all that well. I don’t want to go on this trip knowing you may need some support. I also know that you would advise me that you would not want me to stop living on the basis of the unknown…”
I almost fell off the back end of her bed when she opened her eyes, winked at me, and smiled.
I would keep talking and rubbing; yet, she would slip back into that dementia zone immediately. About twenty minutes later, Grandma lying in a motionless but peaceful way in my mind, I kissed her goodbye, told her that I loved her, then headed for my tackle locker at home to begin getting my gear ready for a trip of great promise.
I know Grandma was telling me to not wait around for her last few breaths and then the funeral. Furthermore, only You Lord know exactly when each of our journeys will find its way to Your pearly gates. Besides, I could always go after the fact should she pass while I was away.
She was so cool in this regard!!
After a few days at sea and then anchoring up in a zone around the Island called Tuna Alley, I thought about Grandma around the clock. It’s really not all that fun knowing Your grandma is on her final days…so many memories.
About 12:30 that Wednesday afternoon, anchored up now in big fish heaven, I was up on the top deck watching the kite fisherman using a set of binoculars. Kite fishing can be effective because sometimes the conditions on the water call for bait to be distributed 100-150 yards behind the boat. An average bait would not make this type of haul because the hook, line, drag, and the current would not work to the bait’s advantage.
After watching a giant 100 plus pound Charlie Yellowfin tuna fish breach the ocean’s surface about 150 yards behind the stern, I put the glasses down and ventured to my tackle box. No fisherman had caught anything bigger than a #35 lb. tuna and nobody was hooked up at this moment. The kite bait had not been productive up to this point.
I pondered the techniques to get a bait out one hundred fifty yards. The wind was howling from bow to stern and the current was ripping from stern to bow. A little bait would never make it to the zone against the current, so, from the depths of my tackle-box I commissioned a small white party balloon to come to my aid.
I tied the balloon onto my main line at the connection between the main line and the floral carbon leader. This left about twenty inches to the hook.
While at the ship’s bait tank in the cockpit of the stern, I patiently waited to find a fast-moving Olympic class swimmer. I had associated and became friends with some world class swimmers while attending college that continues to this day. I bring this class of swimmer up because first and foremost I respect their skill level, determination, and heart. Most pointedly, it was going to take this type of world class type of character, skill, and toughness to merely stay alive in an ocean like the one illustrated…it is survival of the fittest, to use Darwinian terminology.
After identifying the “chosen one,” I pinned this tough speedster with my Gamakatsu tuna hook right behind the top dorsal fin, let the boat swing on the anchor then lofted a cast that cleared all fisherman and corners. While others followed their baits as they were screaming up to the bow and beyond, my balloon offering was slowly chugging against the current and arrived at “the zone” about fifteen minutes after it hit the water. Nonetheless, the wind can be one’s friend if you know what I mean…
Now barely visible from my vantage point, the balloon was exactly in position when I saw that behemoth fly out of the water fifteen minutes earlier through the binoculars. Although there was quite a bit of line out, I could still feel the little Olympian sardine bait kicking around, still trying like hell to set a world record or set itself free. At one point that little bait got really excited, as if it knew it was in a photo finish race. When that happens, instincts take over and the adrenaline could be felt for minutes. Or, at a minimum it could be felt until the real fight was well under way!
I felt the infamous and glorious tap…tap on the end of the line, counted to three as line was peeling off the reel at lightning speed, then pointed the rod tip towards the water and set the drag to full strike position.
‘Bi…BIG FISH ON’ was gloriously hollered from the deckhand standing up on the bait tank!!
A few minutes after the initial strike and line began to slowly stop singing off the reel, I knew I was in the battle of a lifetime. Around the made-for-big-fish vessel I would go, like playing Ring around the Rosie several times as I gained and lost line in the two-step dance. Some say minutes turn into days in a boxing ring. This too can be said for standup fishing, especially fish that outweigh the line class by two-fold. After a fifty minute battle using 60 pound test monofilament, the gaffs were inserted and this warrior landed on the deck. It was by far the toughest and largest fish I had ever caught in all my fishing adventures.
It weighed in at 124 pounds and measured 58 inches nose to outside edge of the tail.
While this giant was being attended to by the deckhands to preserve it for the dinner table, I sat on the deck next to it, completely exhausted from the battle, with my arm around it. Like in classic prize fights, the competitors, win or lose, hug after the match. In this case, I was so grateful-yet at the same time, I still had my Grandma on my mind.
This fish certainly had her temperament, toughness worth noting, and similar measurements. At approximately 124 pounds soaking wet and exactly 58 inches in length, Grandma and the tuna warrior were eerily the same size…
In any regard, that Wednesday evening during this week at sea I had a dream that awoke me in my stateroom bunk. The dream involved a very dear friend who happened to come onto the boat and wake me up in the middle of the night. I was shocked in the dream to see him; asking how he was able to find me out here in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. As dreams go, he was telling me that there would be a celebration this coming Friday taking place at my Parent’s home and he thought I should attend.
I awoke from the dream only to find my buddy was not there. I strongly contend that he was as real in that dream as imaginable. I told The King of Long Rangers, my truly great friend who shared the stateroom with me about the dream. We both thought the timing was strange considering this mate knew of my Grandma’s condition.
Fast forward: Upon arrival back at Fisherman’s Landing the following Sunday morning I phoned home as the boat entered the calmness of the dawn in the harbor. My wife at the time answered the phone. She
asked how the trip went; yet, I was more concerned with Grandma’s condition.
“Your Grandmother passed away last Wednesday about 12:30 in the afternoon and the funeral was Friday. Everyone went back to your parent’s home. They all missed you…”
I was speechless and couldn’t utter a word. Tears started flowing down my face as I sobbed behind dark shades on the bow of this amazing fishing vessel. After hanging up the phone, my acquired sea-legs felt useless. I found a seat on the dry part of the floorboard and sat there for a few minutes, piecing the timing together. Grandma passed at the exact time I went into battle, 12:30 pm, Wednesday afternoon.
As miracles would overwhelm, this fish was a gift from Grandma. I have no idea how she and You Lord managed to do what You did; nevertheless, I would not put it past either one of You to use this event to display Your kindness to me. From the heart, both of you will never be underappreciated! So amazing…so improbably amazing!! I’m getting tears just thinking about it. So grateful!! So thankful!!
You both are tremendous heroes and I love you for what you represent. With both of you in my corner, I feel incredibly blessed. Some say they would rather be lucky than good. I say I’d rather be blessed and have “luck” arrive by way of miracles. What do You think?
Some final thoughts on this little miracle: I named the fish EC after my grandmother’s initials. It was large enough to earn the jackpot money for the trip, so after handsomely tipping the crew and skipper I took my earnings and used them to make a recreation of the fish from a mold (hanging in my shop now). I also purchased a fishing jacket with Grandma’s initials, her weight, and the day of battle…Grandma’s passing, embroidered on it. I’ll forever be remembering and be grateful! I love you Grandma!!
In this light, I wrote the eulogy upon returning home and then read it aloud while visiting Grandma at her final resting place. Spiritually, we had a great moment, just as we had shared many great moments during our shared journey.
Miracles are where you find them! They are all around us and happen daily. One simply needs to be open to recognizing them. It is a mindset that can easily be tapped.
Note: Is it still coincidence that the magic number 7 is the gift that keeps on giving? Like I said earlier; It’s my favorite number regardless of what the experts say.
124 = (1+2+4) = 7
I could go on for many more hours, filling Your thoughts and eyes with amazing and miraculous tales; however, I’ll need to save a few stories for Part II, if the opportunity arises. I’m hopeful I’ve inspired the reader to share some of their miracle stories; because, don’t we all need a little inspiration at times? I look forward to reading them all!
Simply, we all need to BELIEVE! If we can focus on the want rather than the need You will make our dreams real!!
“Everything is possible for one who believes” (Mark 9:23)
From The Author
This site accommodated a dream, a writers dream that is. One to share thoughts, ideas, awareness, and solutions through creative, entertaining, and perhaps enlightening ways. I blog, you reply. Pretty simple and pretty cool. I'm not sure who will enjoy this more, you the reader or me the entertainer? In any regard, I look forward to sharing some of the journey...