Monday, December 26, 2011

Thoughts about Holidays from a veteran

I was recently talking with a veteran from the war in Iraq.  As we talked about what it was like to spend Thanksgiving and Christmas away from family and friends.  It was a tender and tough conversation with the seasoned soldier.

As he shared what it was like, we talked about the marginal quality of the food.  "It didn't taste anything like my moms dinner."  Of course, it wasn't an MRE (Meal Ready to Eat) but it wasn't that great.  "I really missed the meal with the family."  He also talked about the time around the table where they shared memories about their family, tradition and things that they would normally be doing.  You see, our military serve so that we can enjoy our freedoms.  Freedoms, we take for granted way to often.

Before we finished, he described what it was like to leave the DFAC (Dining Facility) after their Thanksgiving Dinner.

"We left the DFAC and we were hit with incoming mortars that the enemy was shooting in on us.  We ran for cover and saw that the area we were sitting near was destroyed."  "Not only that one mortar came in, we were hit with 5 other rounds."  "Not a great way to spend Thanksgiving!"

The conversation we shared opened my eyes to the way that our military spend their holidays.  You know, I may complain at times about the food, weather or other things when celebrating a holiday, and yet now, I am rethinking my responses.  I have not spent a major holiday in a foreign land nor in a war zone, but, I now really appreciate what I have.

It is very possible that I will be spending next Thanksgiving and Christmas away from my family so I have treasured this years time in a real deep and special way.  Thank you Lord for allowing me to enjoy a great time with my family this season and seasons past.

Praying for each of our military and thankful for their service and sacrifice so we can enjoy our celebrations in safety and comfortably.

May the Lord bless each of our military and their family during this holiday season.

Getting our Christmas Tree as a family, what a great day!

Thanksgiving dinner as a family where are thoughts turned to Tyler's battle buddies.

Christmas Eve Celebration with family! What a great time!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Joining Team Shackelford!!

In my last blog, I wrote about a young six year old that had join our team! Well, a few weeks later a four year old boy joined our team.  Incredible!!  I love how God works in building His team!!!

You see, we have always believed in ministry there are are three parts to our team, but only one I am not going to use the Trinity to describe it nor am I  going to use the clover or egg to explain it...just One team and three parts to it!

The first is PRAY! Those who pray for our ministry as the Lord directs! Daily, weekly or special times! His leading and prompting is when some pray! We love that!  Those our pray team members.

The second is PLAY!  Those that are physically involved in ministry with us! Baking cookies for a Bible study, making meals at camp with us, hosting a function at their home, preaching at a church with our former ministry, working on our vehicles, making curtains for our home as a gift and the list goes on! Those our play team members.

Then there are those that PAY!  Those who are led by the Spirit to financially give to our ministry so that we can do the work call has for us!  They give sacrificially and with their whole heart! They give so that we can go!  Some give monthly, quarterly, yearly and at special times with special gifts!  Each to their own ability and to the leading of the Spirit.  We are so blessed by them.  Those are the pay team.

One Team, One Focus, One Lord and One see people know Jesus!!!
You may be on one or more parts to the team but wherever the Lord has you, we are so thankful!!

This past month, the newest member on the play was at my house helping me to put stamps on the envelopes we used to mail out our ministry DVD.  What a big job and he was willing to help me out for just about two hours.  He was attentive to detail and did an amazing job.  He was so excited to help and did so with a grateful heart! While we were stamping them, I shared with him about Jesus and talked about what Julie and I are going to do! He got so excited! My little buddy "G" was excited to know that he was a part of our team!!

You see, know matter how small or big you think you part is, you are a part!! God uses every gift, talent and resource to His Glory if we will let Him lead and use us!

Thanks for being a part!

Are you a part of our team? Where is the Lord leading you to serve His people and His plan today? is where you can go to join our pay team. Contact us at for information about our pray, play and pay teams! We would love to share with you our needs and the opportunities for you to be a part!