Home Sweet Home

Home Is Where The Heart Is

That’s right, and I’ll be at home for awhile. My kitchen is now my professional workplace. Due to the current real-world conditions I brought my job home with me earlier this week, and it will stay here at home indefinitely. It could be a few weeks. It could be a few months. But I’m determined to continue working here at home in my kitchen to support the mission – whatever that mission may be. (I don’t discuss my job in public other than the fact that I’m a 35-year employee of the United States Air Force.)

Incidentally this is a COVID-19-free blog. I won’t talk about it on here in any way because this is also a political-free blog, and you can’t talk about COVID-19 without getting political.

My goal over these next few weeks (or months) is to – believe it or not – lose a few pounds (by eating less), and get more physically fit by engaging in my favorite exercise – walking. This past Sunday morning at dawn I actually did something for the first time in a little over 3 years. I walked around the entire perimeter of my own neighborhood – 1.37 miles in 23 minutes and 21 seconds. I hope to do more neighborhood walks early in the morning, as long as weather conditions permit.

Well this is my spontaneous Thursday at 3 AM blog post. I have no idea what I plan to write until I actually write it. My Friday, Sunday, and Monday blog posts are programmed. You pretty much know what you’re gonna get from me on those 3 days. Incidentally this upcoming Sunday I’ll present Part 2 of my multi-part sermon titled “Faces & Heels”. Part 2 will pick-up where Part 1 left-off this past Sunday. This is shaping-up to be a 4-part sermon, so it will culminate on Easter Sunday (April 12TH).

Over on my Flickr site I’m posting photos of my January 19TH 2020 visit to the Edison And Ford Winter Estates in Fort Myers Florida. I love that place. If I lived over there in that region I’d probably hang out there on a regular basis if not volunteer there and give guided tours. It’s one of the coolest museums that I’ve ever visited – even cooler than the last museum that I volunteered at inside Everglades National Park.

Well this concludes my Thursday blog post. I’ll be back again tomorrow morning for my weekly RETRO. This week I’ll be looking back at Sunday March 25TH 1990. A 19-year-old had the # 1 smash on my chart, and it eventually hit # 1 nationwide on Billboard’s Hot 100. He got help on the song from the hottest band in the world at the time. Find out who he is when I turn the page on a new day.

All rights reserved (c) 2020 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries

Sunday Scripture

I have returned from out-of-town. My 628.8-mile road-trip came to a close yesterday (Saturday) morning. I’ll share details of my combined business and leisure trip today, tomorrow, and Thursday here on my blog. This is the Spring Season Premiere here on #CountUp !

Today was my 5TH Anniversary with my current church body. After 8 years and a month with my previous (much larger) church body I left for a much smaller church body a mile down the street – knowing only one person at the new place. I began a season of much-needed rest at the new place. 17 months later I was asked to take over and lead our monthly Communion. Today I led our 45TH Communion together. Here’s how it went:

Let us now transition into our monthly observance and celebration of Communion. It’s an observance. It’s an opportunity – that allows us to slow down, and reflect, and honor, and remember what our Lord & Savior Jesus Christ did for us on that cross on that day. It’s a continuation of this celebration that we enjoy together as a church body every Sunday morning when we bring the church from out there to in here. For we know that the church is not this physical building. The church is us.

This past week I spent 4 days – Monday to Thursday – up in Orlando – celebrating Christ – with 5,000+ Pastors, Preachers, Ministers, and other Church Leaders. We were in Communion with one another. We were a Community of fellow believers in one place at one time discussing the many ways forward to go forth and advance the Kingdom of God in this world. We met together. We prayed together. We sang together. We learned together. We listened together. We got closer to God together. And then – we were sent out into the world together.

The overall theme of this conference was the entirety of the Gospel According To John – Chapter 17. In Christ’s final prayer to the Father – before His suffering and death – He said this in Verses 20 and 21:

I am praying – not only for these disciples – but also for all who will ever believe in Me through their message. I pray that they will all be one – just as You and I are One – as You are in Me – Father – and I am in You. And may they be in Us – so that the world will believe You sent Me.

See the Son – was – and is – praying for all of those of the world who do not yet believe in Him. He wanted believers from anywhere and everywhere to become one flock with one shepherd.

2,000 years later we believe that when we are one with one another – it’s an extension of the union that we have with Christ Himself. It’s a union that’s modeled on the Oneness of the Father and the Son. And through the power of the Holy Spirit we are intimate with the Father and the Son. We are transformed by this renewing.

This is our believer’s Communion. We believe that we have one living and true God – in God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. 3 Persons – 1 God. Each is God individually; yet, they are one God together. One God who is almighty. One God who never changes with the times. One God who is eternal.

And so this believer’s Communion is open for everyone who hears me – everyone who believes that we are better – together. We must be in unity – as a community, so that when we go out there – the world will see the love of Christ in each of us.

(I’ve asked Larry and Shirley to serve us these elements today, so as they make their way up here to retrieve the elements) I invite you to join me in honoring our 3-in-1 God – who reigns – now and forever.

At this time come forth to accept this bread and this juice. Take them back to your seat – and remain standing (if you can). After everyone is back at their seats – we’ll accept these elements together as a church body. Come forth.

Communion

Let us take this bread, and know that it represents the sacred body of Christ that was given up for us on that cross. We take this bread in remembrance of Him.

Let us take this juice, and know that it represents the precious blood of Christ that was shed for us on that cross. We take this juice in honor of Him.

Let us bow our heads. Let us pray:

Thank You God for this Glorious moment – in this place – at this time. Thank You Lord for being the loving God that You are – Creator, Christ, and Spirit as One.

Thank You Lord for Your awesome presence in our lives – and Your intentional purpose for our lives. May all of Your blessings and miracles constantly strengthen our faith in You, increase our love towards others, and unify our hearts and our souls. We honor You Lord. We praise You Lord. We worship You Lord. We celebrate You Lord. We love You Lord – on this day – and with each new day. And we confirm this by saying – AMEN.

(Please be seated.)

As the Bible says in red letters – Son to Father:

I have given them the glory You gave Me, so they may be one as We are One. I am in them, and You are in Me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that You sent Me, and that You love them as much as You love Me.
(John 17:22-23)

All rights reserved (c) 2020 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries

My Top 5 Hits RETRO – 1990

Every Friday I post the Top 5 of one of my classic hit music charts based on personal preference and influenced by radio airplay from either 10, 15, 20, or 30 years ago this weekend (rotating each week).

It’s the 4TH Friday of the month, so I go back 30 years ago. Here it is – for the week ending Sunday February 25TH 1990:

  1. “The End Of The Innocence” – Don Henley
  2. “Roam” – The B-52s
  3. “I Go To Extremes” – Billy Joel
  4. “Dangerous” – Roxette
  5. “Just Between You And Me” – Lou Gramm

Don Henley’s “The End Of The Innocence” hit # 1 on my chart 30 years ago this past week. Not bad for a single that was actually released nearly 9 months earlier in June 1989. It was a late-bloomer on South Florida Top 40 radio at the time – not really making much of an impact until after it was nominated for 3 Grammy awards including Record Of The Year and Song Of The Year. (It won for Best Male Rock Vocal Performance.)

Don_Henley_-_The_End_of_the_Innocence

“The End Of The Innocence” was the title-track of Don Henley’s biggest album ever (nominated for Album Of The Year), and that album was by far my most-listened to album (cassette) on the sands of Saudi Arabia during Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. It essentially became the soundtrack of the war for me. Not bad for an album that was pretty much anti-war. The title-track actually returned to # 1 on my chart dated Sunday March 10TH 1991 – my first Sunday back home stateside post-war. I consider it to be one of the greatest songs ever made from one of the greatest albums ever made during my lifetime.

Well after 13 weeks in a row of blogging – 55 posts in a row on Thursdays, Fridays, Sundays, Mondays, and 3 Tuesdays – I’m ready for a break – Spring Break that is !

I’ll tell you all about it when I return for “Sunday Scripture” and “My Top 10 Hits” on Sunday March 08TH 2020 and Monday March 09TH 2020 respectively.

Your likes, follows, and comments are always appreciated. Thank You for being part of my online ministry to share God’s Good News and win souls for Christ through His music. I’m also on Twitter @ChrisMDay, and I’m the man behind the tweets for my church @LivingWatersHFL.

Enjoy the first week of March my friends !  May the God of hope fill you completely with joy and peace as you trust in Him.

All rights reserved (c) 2020 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries

Take A Picture

(Good song by Filter from early-2000.)

Well Happy Thursday February 27TH 2020 my friends. It’s the final Thursday of February, and it’s the start of another blogging weekend for me. But this weekend will be curtailed. In lieu of the usual 4 new blog posts I’m only publishing 2 – this one right here -and tomorrow’s RETRO. After that I’m going on hiatus for a little over a week to hang out with church pastors, preachers, planters, ministers, leaders, and disciples up the road in Orlando. I’ll also be singing and dancing in the middle of the Hertz Arena in Estero Florida with MercyMe and Jeremy Camp performing their greatest hits. That’s how I “Spring Break” at nearly 53 !

So here’s where that Title above (“Take A Picture”) is significant. Last weekend (Friday in fact) I posted original material on Facebook for the first time in 13 months. It was actually quite benign (or so I thought). I swapped out my profile picture. That’s it. I replaced a picture from 2018 with a picture from 2012. It’s a picture of me up on stage with my former church family with a wireless mic hosting a Sunday morning service. I didn’t think anything of it really when I posted it. Some friends recently asked me to change the picture, so I did. In the next few days it garnered 35 likes and loves and 15 comments. It’s one of my most reacted-to Facebook posts ever (since I created my account in 2013).

Incidentally – other than the occasional profile picture and cover photo swap – I don’t post much on Facebook anymore. I still have friends (lots of them) who are only on Facebook, so I keep in touch with them on there and sometimes post a comment on something that they have posted. But this is where I really live on social media – right here on my own blog.

And so – here’s that profile picture that went viral on my Facebook account for a few days. Enjoy, and I’ll be back tomorrow for my Winter Season Finale.

LPC 20120205

All rights reserved (c) 2020 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries

My Top 10 Hits – Week 157

Every Monday I post my all-new Top 10 Christian hit music chart based on personal preference and influenced by radio airplay. Here it is – for the week ending Sunday February 16TH 2020:

  1. “The God Who Stays” – Matthew West [# 1 last week / 13TH week on chart]
  2. “Rescue Story” – Zach Williams [2 / 19TH]
  3. “Almost Home” – MercyMe [4 / 9TH]
  4. “Waymaker” – Michael W. Smith Ft. Vanessa Campagna [3 / 4TH]
  5. “Your Name Is Power” – Rend Collective [5 / 6TH]
  6. “One Day” – Cochren & Co. [7 / 4TH]
  7. “I Will Fear No More” – The Afters [8 / 4TH]
  8. “See A Victory” – Elevation Worship [9 / 2ND]
  9. “Like You Love Me” – Tauren Wells [6 / 5TH]
  10. “I Know” – Big Daddy Weave [- / 1ST]

# 1 One Year Ago This Week:
“Maybe It’s OK” – We Are Messengers

# 1 Two Years Ago This Week:
“Gracefully Broken” – Matt Redman Ft. Tasha Cobbs Leonard

# 1 Three Years Ago This Week:
“Love Broke Thru” – TobyMac

Welcome to the start of Year 4 of this current K-LOVE era of my weekly hit music chart. I discovered the existence of K-LOVE in a hotel room in Bartow Florida on Presidents’ Day of 2017. I was returning southward down the peninsular spine of Florida after having been at the TobyMac concert in Tallahassee the night before. I was actually praying to God in my hotel room for a Christian pop station back home in South Florida after listening to WAY-FM and The JOY-FM in North and Central Florida. Well God delivered that miracle immediately.

I quickly discovered that there was already a Christian pop station in South Florida by the name of K-LOVE, and here’s the kicker – its 1,000-foot+ transmitter was broadcasting it at the U.S. maximum power of 100,000 watts just 5 miles away from my home !  The next morning once I got within about 100 miles of that transmitter and my home – I heard K-LOVE for the first time. And here we are 3 years later.

Tomorrow (Tuesday) here on #CountUp I’ll present a special cumulative Top 20 chart – my Top 20 hits of the past 3 years.

All rights reserved (c) 2020 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries

Here – Eat This !

Last Saturday morning with chilly temperatures for South Florida (low-to-mid-60s) I enjoyed about a 3-hour visit to the local Fruit & Spice Park. They claim to be the only park of its kind in the continental U.S. It was my 4TH visit ever, and my 2ND visit in 10½ months. I got in for free because I’m a member. (I bought a $25 annual pass last March.)

I toured the Park for a good 90 minutes, and I walked almost exactly 2½ miles. After that I hopped on the tram (pulled by a John Deere tractor) for a fun 1-hour and 15-minute tour of much of the Park that I had just walked, but this time narrated by a 21-year-old expert. He made many stops along the way treating us with exotic fruit samples, edible leaves and flowers, and other leaves for us to smell. Here at the Park you can’t pull anything off of any trees. Only the tour guide can do that. Any fruit that has already fallen to the ground is yours to claim !

After the tram tour I stepped in to their small café, and I enjoyed a hot and delicious Cuban sandwich (served panini style) and a cold and refreshing banana milkshake. Good Stuff my friends !  Little did I know that later that same day and into the night my stomach would become bloated and somewhat painful. I ended up calling it an earlier than normal night knowing that the bloat and pain would eventually dissipate in my sleep – or I would be rudely awaken early the next morning with botulism. I’m blaming it all on those 25 or so edible leaves that I consumed – particularly the bright yellow ones.

Incidentally I awoke the next (Sunday) morning feeling great. The pain went away in my sleep.

All rights reserved (c) 2020 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries

Southwest Florida Road-Trip

This past U.S. holiday weekend I enjoyed a 3-day / 3-county / 360-mile Florida road-trip to and from Fort Myers. It was my first visit to the region since last July. I always enjoy visiting Southwest Florida (Collier and Lee County). Usually I venture over there to see a concert at the Hertz Arena, and this trip was no exception.

My first stop though after crossing the Everglades via the Tamiami Trail was the flagship branch of the multi-site Collier County Museum in East Naples. It was my first visit since June 2012. Back then I thought it was my first visit ever – until I saw some of the exhibits outside – and then I realized that I had been there years earlier.

At the end of my 90-minute visit I picked-up a brochure for a nearby place that I never knew existed – the Naples Museum Of Military History – at the main terminal of the Naples Airport. So I went there, and I immersed myself in all of the awesome displays there. They were overflowing at the seams in the two rooms that they occupy there. They need more space, and hopefully they get it.

After that I took a ride out to the country and into the woods for another first-time visit ever – the Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary. What a wonderful and beautiful place this was – especially on a sunny and coolish day. I’m sure that it would be a miserable place to be during our 9-month bug season and especially our 5-month rainy season, but that was truly a great day to be outdoors strolling the 2.25-mile elevated boardwalk absorbing nature’s beauty – created by my Almighty God.

By the way all of the above was Day 1 of my road-trip !  Day 2 started in Fort Myers at probably their # 1 tourist attraction – the Edison & Ford Winter Estates. It was my first visit since April 2011. I love this place. I could work and have fun at this place after I retire from my military / civil service career. I took the 1-hour and 15-minute guided tour which was a lot of fun (even though I had done it before). I’d do it again !

On Sunday night I went to the Hertz Arena to see Franklin Graham conclude his recent tour of Florida. He led us in prayer for our nation and our leaders, and then he preached a classic Billy Graham Crusade sermon on Repentance & Salvation. That’s a topic that I’m quite familiar with, as many of my sermons are about the same. Jeremy Camp opened and closed for Franklin, as he performed 7 of his greatest hits. I’ll be seeing Jeremy Camp perform again at this very same arena in 6 weeks, as he opens for MercyMe.

Day 3 of 3 started back in East Naples at the Naples Botanical Garden – yet another first-time visit. I walked well over 3 miles for 2 hours at this fun place on a chilly and overcast morning.

I’ve got over 80 photos of this fun road-trip to and from Southwest Florida – also known as Florida’s Paradise Coast. At least 60 of those 80 photos will probably be uploaded and captioned on my Flickr site over the next few weeks. But I’ll close this blog post with a sneak-peek. It’s a photo of the chalkboard at the start of the boardwalk at the Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary where visitors can write-down what they’ve seen along their walk on the boardwalk. A little less than 90 minutes later – there were more sightings documented on the chalkboard.

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All rights reserved (c) 2020 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries