Shades of Gray from Grayson Co, TX #838 – Change, Why is It so Hard?

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We have yet to have any really cold or fall like weather, yet the leaves seem to know it is time for change.

I can say it. I can feel it. I can listen to Sam Cooke tell me that “A change goin’ to come”. But, why is it so hard. I sometimes wish I could adapt to my surroundings and change like the leaves.

Yet despite the want and the know, I cling to what I am. I most often feel that I don’t quite fit in. Not from the lack of trying. I feel like a river that has been dammed.

“You don’t have to fear change. What you need to fear is things remaining the same. When that happens, life has stopped.” Melody Beattie

monos en theos…†…jim

Shades of Gray from Grayson Co, TX #816 – BE THE RED CHAIR


There is an old deserted church in our neighborhood, Pleasant Grove Baptist.

It has a castle like and crumbling exterior. I have been building the nerve to take a peak inside.

Amidst the rubble, trash and decay sat this beautiful red chair where the altar had once been.

I listened to hear the stories it could bear witness to, but all I heard was the need to be like the red chair. To sit amongst the rubble. To stand firm and retain your form even when it all seems to be falling apart.

monos en theos…†…jim

Shades of Gray from Grayson Co, TX #814 – Black dog = Blue monster


“The only reason you are alive is that far more has

gone right for you than has gone wrong. Your dreams

are for your joy; even if they lie crushed on the ground,

you need not make them responsible for misery. If you

raise your eyes from the shards you’ll find more dreams

all around, and many of them can come true.”

Enjoyment is in the Waiting…Insight From Martha

yeah yeah yeah….but the black dog still bites and the blue monster still clings…†…monos en theos…jim


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Ezekiel 36:26:

” I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh”.

stay cool while you wait ††† en theos ††† jim


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Just a little over a week ago and it was the start of a new year. I was filled with the hope and promise of a new start. I read so many advice columns on how to make your resolutions, and some on why not to make them. I read of choosing just one word, a three word phrase, one bible verse, but now a week into it and I just feel lost.

One word,three words, one bible verse or a whole chapter of them and I have just languished in a state of seemingly permanent dysfunction, despair and feeling that my heart is in a vise and just can’t get free.

I was having a brief feeling of bouncing back from my six week battle with pneumonia and arthritis in the hips and back. One week of almost feeling “normal” and after a week of trying to gain a degree of activity, I woke up early this morning with a return of the pain in my hips. It just makes me feel so old and comfort seems a distant stranger.

I am longing for do over, a mulligan, a new start to the same year. Can we start over again…en theos ††† j


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An image from my last good day.

I came down with a cough the day after this photo of me and my granddaughter as we walked about a park in Houston. The next day I got a cough. I hacked, spit, laid in bed and O.T.C.ed November away.

Now, six week later and half-way through the last month of the year, 10 days before Christmas, I am at long last turning the corner and beginning to feel better. The antibiotics are working. The pneumonia is clearing, my coughing is almost over. During this time my arthritis has grown so severe that the act of walking is a real pain.

My faith has been severely shaken, my body weakened and my spirit and stamina are nil. I have no energy or drive to pick up a camera. I sadly watch my wife walk my two dogs as I don’t have the energy to tag along. I wonder if and when I will ever be able to return to “normal”.  In a couple of words: life sucks. Growing old ain’t for sissies and I am a sissy for sure.

Enjoy what you got………..jim

IMAGES OF SMALL THINGS FROM THE BIGGEST COUNTY IN TEXAS #594 – 2 empty Chairs once again appear.

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For one reason or another we changed our walking route yesterday. I don’t know exactly why. We all are such creatures of habit. Sometimes we do things because that is the way we always do them.

In the midst of nowhere, there appeared to me two empty chairs. This being the second time I have stopped to take notice of a pair of misplaced chairs in less than a week. I always say stuff doesn’t happen for no reason. So it sets me to trying to put together the why of encounters of two chairs? One abandoned chair seems to need no explanation, but two somehow needs some applied reasoning.

I can fill the chairs with all kinds of empty logic. I seem to always find them when I am walking with “the black dog”. I see the emptiness of the holes in my life, the disappointment I bring when I don’t fulfill my self expectations, I am used to that. What pains me the most is how I feel that I let those down that are so close to me. I see how I feel that I am sitting alone and do not share my pain. I can see how the bottom has fallen out of the chair. How will it hold me up ? How far can I fall, not too far, the chair is very close to the ground.

Peace out ††† en theos ††† jimwork