Sunday, August 23, 2009

A GIANT step forward, and killer bees

8/23/09 Sunday
The bees came back. Only this time they are aggressive and probably the Africanized ones they call “killer bees”. I went out the door and wasn’t even close, about ten feet away, when several came at me and one stung me on the face. There is a crowd of them buzzing where they get through the rotten siding to the crawl space under the house. Tomorrow I’ll go to the store and buy some bug foggers to throw under the house. I’ll have to be real careful and am debating whether or not to do this during the day. That is when they are most active. At night the bees all settle down and you don’t have to worry about getting swarmed, at least not as much. I’ll have the hatch in the floor open to do this and it wouldn’t be nice to have them swarm through that into the house. Ben and Gretchen, our two outside dogs, are staying clear of the veranda, which is where our kitchen door and their food is, along with being near to the bees. So life in West Texas remains a constantly changing challenge.

Good news! We bought a disc. At the Farmer’s Market yesterday our booth was next to the rancher who sells beef. We got to talking and I told of how I do everything by hand but have a tractor now, only nothing to use with it. He said he had a couple of discs he would give me a deal on. So we drove to his ranch after church today. Skyler said he had barely used the one that was about six feet wide. If so then it’s been sitting a while. He made sure to tell me that they go for about nine hundred dollars new and I replied that the Mahindra dealer had new ones for six. So it was time for me to make an offer as it was clear he wasn’t going to. Hell I don’t know. Don’t have a lick of experience regarding used farm equipment, other than being taken to the cleaners with the tractor. So I looked and looked, not sure what I was looking for. Finally I offered $300. He accepted the offer right away. Makes me think I could have got it cheaper but it doesn’t matter. Cherie has money socked away and we made a few dollars with the blackeyed peas so we could swing it. This is a big step forward for us. Our first piece of farm equipment and probably the most important one. The tractor may not go in reverse but it sure will pull forward and that is the only direction you need to go with a disc. So finally I have a chance at the sticker grass. It has gotten real bad in the back two thirds of the five acres. Now I can disc it up every two weeks or so and get a handle on the weeds, break the cycle of them going to seed and propagating. Plus it makes preparing areas to plant much easier than doing it all by hand.

Another big happening here with us is that we have succeeded in getting our friend, Ron Charles, scheduled to appear on GLC television. They will be here September 14. Ron is the creator of the Cubit Foundation, or at least the president. I get fuzzy on stuff like that sometimes. Regardless he is a man of God who is dedicated to serving the needs of others, particularly the moslems who have converted to Christianity in moslem countries. These people, moslem by birth but Christian by choice, are under a death sentence and severely persecuted. Many are killed, as in thousands, every year. Both Ron and his wife have received serious injuries while overseas in these countries. Mostly from accidents involving horses and camels. An occupational hazard I suppose. I can’t go into details too much because of the dangers and problems dealing with moslem controlled governments.

Here’s something that gets me. I know of churches that have only a couple or three hundred members attending services who’s new pastors demanded six figure incomes when these churches interviewed them for the position. Ron travels the world and puts his, and sometimes his families life at risk, enduring great hardship. He hasn’t received a paycheck since April, putting all the money raised into the ministry. He supports his family, provides housing and food, through the love offerings given where he speaks on behalf of the ministry. At least I think that’s how it works. But he truly lives in faith, trusting that God will meet his and his families needs. We have seen this miraculous provision in our lives on an almost daily basis. And I’m no man of God by any means. Here’s an example. On August 12 I posted that I need new boots. August 21 I have them. They weren’t just given to me. The farmer next to us told me I can pick his peas and that earned us the money needed to buy boots, and also to contribute to buying the disc.

But my brother Ron has deeper needs. When they come here they will need a place to stay. I’m going to ask a friend if they have extra flyer miles that Ron and his wife can use to fly here from Dallas. We’d let them stay with us but she’s highly allergic to cats. But as long as they are here I’ll be the chauffer and drive them everywhere they need to go. Ron is an old friend. He was in our first wedding and was my mentor as I worked to be a minister. I was there as he founded a church from scratch, starting with a bible study and growing it till we built a church. He was there when Cherie and I got that divorce that never should have happened. It broke his heart as much as ours. Ron will be available to speak on Wednesday September the 16th. If any of you are involved with a church that has a heart for missions and particularly persecuted Christians, email me at I can tell you things that I won’t publish on this blog. Plus if you would like to help them out in any way I’ll direct you where to do so. In fact just go to his website at


~Nate said...

those off brand 3 point discs used bring from $175-$400 depending on how wore the blades are, $300 was a fair price for that unit and it looks like it has not been used much, REMEMBER: Grease all the bearings every time you use it, that west Texas sand gets everywhere and grease is cheaper then bearings, TSC has their Grease on sale for $20 a case right now

Bob said...

Thanks Nate, I need practical advice like that, goes a long way for a farmer virgin like me. $20 a case sounds like a steal. I'll get it today.