Young Eyes, Raging Fire, Sad Night

On one Christmas night when I was 5 years old living it Bakersfield, CA turned into a very sad and life time memory that is still in my memory very vividly. During the evening everything was normal. The stockings were hung up, the cookies for Santa were out for his midnight dash through my house. I was told to go to bed and as a good boy on a Christmas Eve normally does, I went straight there without complaint. Sometime later my parents went to bed too.

Sometime during the night I was wakened to the lights and sirens of firetrucks rushing by my house. Being my bedroom window faced the street those lights flashing into my room were bright. I got up and looked outside to see a fire-hose ran down the center of my street towards the top of the street. There was an eerie red glow of the firetrucks, maybe 3 or 4 of them. But the yellowish red glow of the fire across the street and over a house was brighter than the firetrucks’ lights.  Looking further up the street I could see the flames jumping over the top of the house next to the now fully engulfed family home. I watched as the firemen tried in vain to put the fire out.

By now my whole family were up and in the living room. I rushed in there also. We sat there in awe at what we were watching. Even at my tender age I knew this was a very horrible event. I don’t remember of any of us really talking but I could see the concern written all over my parents’ faces and my two older sisters. There was nothing that the firemen could do but protect the houses next door to the burning home.

The next morning the normal excitement of Christmas morning wasn’t there, even for the very young little boy who I was. We all kept looking outside the window just looking at the debris that the fire had left. There was a travel trailer out front that the night before held some family members that were visiting the family of the burned out house for Christmas. Then my father learned that the fire took the lives of 3 people, grandparents and a small boy of 3 years of age. This family didn’t just loss their home, but their grandparents and a baby boy.

Later during the weeks that pasted it was learned, or maybe rumored that the fire was started by a lite cigarette that someone dropped while they slept on the couch. The little boy was sleeping inside the house  with his grandmother while the grandfather was out in the travel trailer. When the fire was finally detected the everyone got out except for the grandmother and the little boy. That was when the grandfather ran in to save his wife, or as I remember hearing then he ran back in to die with his beloved wife. I truly wish I knew what was true here or not about him running in, but I don’t.

This night has forever stayed with me. It has made me truly know what my family are to me. That they can be here today and gone tomorrow and that we MUST make sure to always show them how much they mean to us. It has given me the most respect to the fire-personal and police the honor they deserve. On that night they ran to this home and fought with their all for people they didn’t even know. They did this on a night that I’m sure most would have much rather been in bed with their own families than to witness the deaths of these 3 family members.

Years later I was on a website discussing life events that changed the members of the board. I explained the details as I did here and found that one of the other board members remembered the horrible event. It was a man that at the time was a father of a little boy that lived in Taft, CA. While I was witness to this horrible fire and somber Christmas morning, had to learn that his little boy’s best friend had just died in that fire. He told me how his wife and him had the hardest time to tell his son that his friend would never return home. He said it told them a few days to have the courage to explain to his son what happened.

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September 11, A day that should never be forgotten.

I was on my way to work when the planes hit. I heard the radio news break that the first plane hit. Entered a dead zone for the radio and when the radio came back on the DJ sounded very quite and in disbelief. Then he said that a second plane had hit the second tower during the time I was in the dead zone… My first thought was, “WTH! is going on!” and my second was, “This can’t be an accident… I think we are being attacked…” At that moment I was thinking about turning around and going straight home. But I completed my way to work. Once there, the base (Edwards AFB) went into DefCon Delta and locked down the doors. No one in or out of any building. We were told that at one point that due to the heavy traffic of getting planes out of the air that some commercial plane may have to land on the base. The next 8 hours were torture. No work was really done because everyone was glued to the TV’s or webcast reports. My ex asked me if she should keep the kids home or send them to school, I said they didn’t need to see this and unless the schools closed it would be better to send them…

Thank you teachers for working that day, I can only imagine how hard it was to know what was going on and still keeping the kids…

When the base allowed us to leave, we weren’t sure if we would be allowed back to work the next day or what to expect as we left. Driving by the runways we saw 4 F-15′s at each end ready to launch.

Will I forget that day? Nope, that day is forever engraved into my memory… All those lost lives, the families’ that lost loved ones, those that fought back, and those that were just questioning why they lived when their friends and family members died… No, that horrible day will stay with me until I no longer breath…

Thank you my Brothers and Sisters in the Armed Forces for taking up the call. God Bless America…

#neverforget

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Prayers to the hurricane and earthquake victims

My heart and prayers go out to the people in areas affected by the hurricanes and the earthquake in Mexico. May God bring comfort and healing to those affected. May he guide those that are in the path of Irma to find safety and those that have been hit by Irma and Harvey will find peace and comfort. May God guide the first responders to find and rescue the victims of each hurricane and the earthquake. May God calm the seas and ease the quaking of the earth.

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Coming back…

So after about 2 years or so I believe I know where I want to take my blog….

My idea is that I will not do the same stuff I did in the past and focus just on politics, news or other such topics. I will cover them from time to time as the moment moves me, probably regretting it each time because of my locate and rather conservative views. Mind you I say conservative and not GOP, Trump or other false conservative views. If you don’t understand the difference you are either a die hard GOP follower or a died hard liberal and such a statement won’t make sense to you.

So what exactly I’m I planing on posting to my blog… Well…. I am going to simply blog what I feel like. A Christian conservative that wants to share his thought on different topics, issues and most importantly his Christian values. I know there will be some that will disagree with me because of my beliefs or political views, but I hope that we can all just have politic conversations as mature people with different views. Some of my post will sometimes be just simple memories from my past, you know childhood, long lost relatives, and other relational stories.

The only thing that I wish was different starting my blog again… Well I wish the news wasn’t so painful to see today.. The hurricane that ripped Texas apart, the fear of the new hurricane threatening to rip Florida apart in the next few days, and the wildfires that the news is barely covering in Montana, Washington, Idaho, and Oregon. These are such horrible tragedies for our fellow Americans to endure. Then the news of Trump removing DACA which affects many young men and women. I’m not for the illegal immigration of people because it is a crime, but many of these young people affected by this were not even old enough to wipe their own butts when their parents broke the law entering the country. Something does need to happen, but not what Obama did by turning a blind eye and not what it seems that Trump wants to do and start to enforce removal of kids that really were innocent victims of circumstance…

So you can kind of see what I will be doing with the blog as time goes on… So lets just see where this all takes us…

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God’s Grace on Me – My Testimony of God’s Love and Protection

Thoughout my life I have always believed in God and Jesus. I can’t say I have ever had the greatest of faith in the Lord or understood the miracles, power or love He has for us. I know until recently I never knew what was meant by God’s Grace. I could see babies being born and writing it off as nature and read about car crashes where people walk away with no injuries and I’d call it simple luck.

Well this was all true until December 2014 while I have increased my studying of the Bible, praying more and trying to live more Christ-like. I have started to see His Glory and Might in things that I used to just write off as luck, or whatever the term was. I started to see that my own sinning was becoming less and less of a burden in my life. But like all sinners I continue to see that I have much more room to grow in His Glory. I still need to learn how to love more easily, help those in need and to speak loudly of His Love, Glory, and Compassion to our fallen world.

This now brings me to the event I had on December 12th. There is no way for me not to see God’s Grace, Protection, and Love He has for us, and I am very humbled to know that I was given the glimpse of it that day. That day started out like most days for me. I got up looked outside and saw it was raining. I knew that I would have to leave a little early and to drive slower and more cautious. I left my house and noticed many spots in Bear Valley to have high water and wanted to make sure my daughter, Abby would be safe driving to school. I texted her using Siri to ensure I would remain safe. I told her to drive slowly and be aware of the high water running across the road. Only 30 minutes later I would find myself in the very unsafe situation I hoped to save my daughter from being in.

I was head east bound on Highway 58 just outside of town. I had been keeping my speed down to what I felt was safe for me and resisted the urge to turn on the cruise control. I had just pasted the Cameron Canyon exit and drove maybe another mile or two further when I felt the rear tires of my car start to slide out from under the car. I didn’t even see any standing water in this slight left curve. I counter turned my steering wheel and let off the gas immediately, but it was too late. My front wheel had left the roads surface and now was sliding on top of the water that had pooled under them. I knew at that moment my wife, Krissy’s nightmare had come true and there was nothing I would be able to do to prevent it… All I could do was hold on and brace myself for the unknown…

The next thing I remember was seeing the medium wall, then the side of the road coming closer, next a loud popping sound has my tires hit what I believe was a small curb. At that point I believe my car must have started to roll over but the speed of the roll was too fast for my mind to understand. The next thing I remember is seeing my cabin lights turn on and the roof on my car below me and coming closer. Next I felt the impact of the car, the roof, and my head all at once. The airbag blew and my hands were now knocked off the steering wheel. My seat belt tightened fast and hard against my shoulder and the sudden pain from the impact hit my neck and my head. At first I collected my thoughts and was hoping that I would hear a voice from a passerby yelling to see if I was ok or not. But to my horror I found that not a single person had witnessed my crash. All I could do was hear the cars and trucks driving across the wet asphalt.

Once I had collected my thoughts, realized I had no one I could count on to call for help, and that the pain in my neck and head were far too great to stay in the upside down position I was in. I unbuckled my seat belt and laid down on the roof of my upside down car. Knowing how close I was to Cashe Creek I worried that I could be in the creek bed and with the raining I had to watch for water coming into the car. I then thanked God for me being alive and it appeared I was not in a life or death situation.

I now knew I needed to find a way to call for help from the inside of my car but without moving too much. While I believed my neck pain was probably only whiplash, I also didn’t want it to be something worst and knew movement could be very bad. So I started to reach for where I knew my phone was before the crash. More than likely it would have been destroyed in the impact since I always keep it in a cradle on my dashboard, the same dashboard that now only had about 4 or 5 inches of space between the roof and the dash and the windshield just blew glass all over. I know that at this point I should have felt completely alone, but I felt completely at peace and was trusting in God to help me through this. I reached my hand up and found the phone’s charging cable and started to pull it. I felt the glass of the windshield above and below my hand as I pulled the cable. Then the cable became limp as it slipped out of the phone. Not be dishearten, I reached up again and found the audio cable and started pulling it. This time the phone stayed connected to it and because the cabin lights were all still lit I was able to see God’s Protection over me once again, the phone was only dirty and showed no damage (Much later I found the only damage to the phone was a small dent around the outside case.)

I now debated on calling Krissy or 9-11 first. I wanted to let her know that I was live and was going to call for help. But I knew that if I called her first that could make things worse for her and me. She would have no good information or even if I was out of the car yet, let alone, I didn’t know my true condition. So I called 9-11 and for the next 26 minutes a dispatcher asked me questions about my status and kept me encouraged that the rescue teams were on their way. I heard the sirens at one point in the distance but still saw no one. The dispatcher stayed on the phone with me and kept asking me if I could see anything, lights, people, cars, anything….

After a few more minutes I started to see the light of a spotlight flicker in my passenger side window. I can’t tell you how grateful I was to see the light. Then the dispatcher told me that have found me and wished me luck and I thanked her. I started hearing voices of the fire and CHP officers. Then I saw the first fireman on the driver side back window, he was trying to break the glass to talk to me. Once he was able to talk to me they started to pry open the back driver side door to get a better access to me. Then another group of firemen pried open my passenger side back door so they would be able to slide the back board under me and pull me out of the car. They then carried me up a slope that felt like it had to be steep and about 15 to 20 feet high. (After healing I went back to the accident location and saw that the slope was a very steep incline of 15 feet, I must have barrowed rolled my car in the air before crashing down on top of the highway fence.)

Once out and in the ambulance I noticed a voice I recognized, it was my brother in Christ Lenny Dehart, he was the CHP officer that found me and didn’t stop searching for me. The paramedic looked after me and asked my many questions to ensure I was ok. Lenny then asked if I want him to call my wife. I could have never been more thankful for God’s Love and Compassion to know that Krissy would be getting the nightmare of phone calls by someone that we knew and was a brother in Christ.

Since it didn’t appear I was in serious condition so the paramedic allowed me to choice to go to Tehachapi Hospital, Kern Medical Center, or Antelope Hospital. I choose Tehachapi Hospital in the hopes that my neck was only whiplash. During the ride I called Krissy and let her know that I was ok and that I will be ok. I told her that she can meet us at the hospital. Once at Tehachapi Hospital they took care of me, but found that my neck was more serious than I had hoping for. I had a hairline break of my C-1. Having been a Hospital Corpsmen in the past I knew how bad this could be… I knew that if it was in the wrong section of the vertebra I could died with the slightest of turn of my neck. Not wanting to panic Krissy or anyone else in my family I acted as if it wasn’t much. However, the hospital activated the trauma response and started the process to send me to Kern Medical Center for a full work up and for a neurologist to check me.

At Kern Medical Center they cut off all my clothes and placed an IV’s in me and monitored me carefully. I will have to say that I did make them a little concerned at first because of my calmness. They asked me if I was a regular to the trauma system or not. I explained that I had been a Navy Hospital Corpsman in the past and knew required workup they had to do, they were much more at peace with my reactions to their working on me. After a few hours the doctor released me and the nurse explained to Krissy just how serious the break was.

During these events I found so many things that showed me God’s Love, Compassion, Protection, and most of all His Grace. He protected me from death in the whole thing and from a more serious injury. His Protection was also evident in my phone being within reach and in perfect condition, and again when I saw my car and realized the phone should not have survived because it was under my car in a small pocket where the roof dented in. He showed me His Love and Compassion by sending a brother in Christ to be able to call Krissy and to then contact our church who sent many and many prayers. Lenny told me that night that the reason the siren were turned off was because they had to slow the traffic down from driving 70 mph pass the area. I found that was God’s Protection for others as He used my crash to allow the rescue teams to slow down and prevent others from crashing.
His Love and Compassion has been so great that 3 churches locally had been praying for me. That people I didn’t even know in any of these churches poured out their love and compassion to my family was greater than I have ever seen. I even had a church in China Lake praying for me.

What I found out the most of this whole event was the Grace of God was greater than I had ever understood before. Truly I don’t feel I ever really knew what His Grace was until December 12. But now I believe I truly understand it. There was no worldly reason or justification for me to be able to write this story. There is no worldly reason or justification that my injuries should be as they were. In truth, this last Christmas should not have been one of joy for my family. But due to God’s Grace I am here to spread to you the Love, Compassion, Protection, and Grace of the Lord. I know some will say that it was luck or simply not my time, but I will say that luck had nothing to do with my being alive today. Only God could provide the Grace of His Protection, Love, Compassion in such events.

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Are you this person?

Are you the person that he is talking about? I bet you are… I’m not judging you… I can’t judge you for I am no better than you. But we can make a change in ourselves and start to truly be social and meet face to face. Hug our family and friends. Shake hands with our neighbors…

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Follow the Word and not the world.

6 As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him:7 Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.
8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.
Colosians 2:6-8 (KJV)

Trust in the Lord your God and not that of the world. The world is full is sinful philosophies that remove you from the Lord and allow yourself to fall into the hands of the enemy. Learn the Word of the Lord and stop listening to the worldly views of those around you that justifiy sins as pleasure.

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Man Of God – Skit Guys

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Lacey Sturm Sings “Mercy Tree”

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What path will you take?

Matthew 7:13-14

Matthew 7:13-14

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