My Neighbor Bob

"If you really keep the royal law found in Scripture, "Love your neighbor as yourself," you are doing right.
- James 2:8 (NIV)

I contemplated on mowing the lawn this morning prior to the future forecast of rainshowers the following day. In fact, it was supposed to be until Thursday.

Pausing only to wipe the sweat that dripped from my brows, I kept on sweeping and gathering the leaves and the other traces of grass that was scattered on the sidewalk. Suddenly, behind my back, a familiar sound of footsteps caused by the shoes being dragged heavily on the curb caught my attention.

“Oh, Hi Bob!” I exclaimed.

“Good morning,” I added as I waved my right hand up in the air with him nodding at my direction to acknowledge my greeting.

“How are you?” he asked me back.

With a slight boyish smile as he kept chewing his gum, he uttered, “There’re also some leaves that need to be swept in front of my house…” His way of joking around with me whenever he sees me cleaning in the front yard.

“I surely will be right over as soon as I get done here!” I replied smiling back at him.

“Well, you have a great day!” we both wished each other in unison.

I went back to finishing my task as I heard the footsteps lessened and Bob’s shadow becoming smaller as he walked away. I enjoyed short conversations with him since I met him from the first day. Through those short encounters we had, I always learned a little bit more about Bob.

A very old man, happy with the way his life had been despite the trials he had gone through from the past. When I see every line on his forehead, it reminds me when he was a war veteran. He only lives with his wife now, with his kids all grown-up and are on different States. His wife, most of the time felt weak that he had been walking alone. He has a house in Arizona but he told me that he preferred to live in California because he favored the climate.

“I’ve seen it all. I’ve done it all. And now, I’m just contented with walking everyday. This is my exercise. You’ll see me walking here and there,” he warned me once.

“I think that’s great. You are stronger than me I think because you always tell me how far you’ve gone and though I’m cleaning here in front of our house, I have not walked farther than you do…”

Reflecting and knowing how his experiences have made him a better person he is today, a much accomplished man yet contented with just simple things, I started hoping to be like him.

“Anytime, I’m ready…” he warns me again…pertaining to dying.

“I’ve seen it all. I’ve done it all. I’m happy…God is good.”

“He is, isn’t He? I’m grateful, too for God, Bob.”

I know I’ll see Bob again and even if I miss him during his early morning walks as I’m brewing my coffee inside the house and not ready to go out in the front yet, he taught me so much about life’s journey.

That like him, I can also go farther and go for longer distances as long as I have FAITH and BELIEF. As long as anyone has faith, Jesus always meets us there on the road we are walking on. He is faithful to walk right beside us in this life’s journey all the way. And where is Jesus….there’s our true Home.

I haven’t seen it all. I haven’t done it all. But because I believe and trust in Jesus, I am contented that no matter what goes on in front of this road I’m walking on, I shouldn't be moved. There will be bumps. There will be rain storms. But anytime… “I’m ready.”  And how I long to be with Jesus knowing in His place, there’s no more pain, no more tears, no more shame…

one of my encounters with Bob
I glanced at Bob’s disappearing shadow and uttered a soft “Thank You…”

Thank you Lord for having me meet my neighbor Bob.
All posts/composed songs copyright by RCUBEs.


The Attacker (5/15/09)

The sun was just peeking from the Eastern skies. Ephesians 6:12 [37 kb]

Out in the prison’s yard, some huge Sheriff’s buses were illuminated by the soft glow coming from the lights all over from the tall lamp posts. Their engines were turned on, warming up, before the buses would take the inmates to the different courts where they would have their trials.

Orange-uniformed men were lined up in pairs, joined together with handcuffs and chained, forming a long line. They already had their breakfast and had their morning medications prior to going to courts. Some were fidgeting, as they waited to board those buses.

All of a sudden, all hell broke loose! Two men were engaged in a fight, using weapons they made secretly for a while. Deputies called for help on the radio, both for custody back-up and medical staff, as well.

When the air was cleared and the other inmates were secured, one man was down on the floor. He sustained multiple gashes but two of them were deep. One cut was vertically etched from his left ear going down to the jaw line. The other dangerous cut was horizontal on his left neck, close to the jugular vein. Pool of blood dripped all over the floor. Holding his bleeding neck, he was pointing at the other inmate few feet away, being guarded by the other deputies.

The other man being accused was not hurt. There were no lacerations nor any other signs of trauma. He was obviously very agitated as he was being questioned by those deputies, while the medical staff started treating the other man on the floor. They cleaned the wounds and controlled the bleeding. That man was sent to the nearby hospital.

When the investigation was finalized, it turned out to be that the “downed man who was accusing the other inmate” was the attacker and the other one who didn’t have injury was the one attacked. The deputies found out that it was the second attempt to attack the unhurt man. Both attacks on him failed. He was well-prepared after the first attempt on him, that when the second attempt was done, he was able to defend himself and ended up injuring his attacker severely.

[Source: NLT Bible ]:

We also have an “accuser of the brethren.” Satan and his army of demons are the enemies of God and of everything good.

“Because God’s children are human beings – made of flesh and blood – Jesus also became flesh and blood by being born in human form. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the Devil, who had the power of death.” –Hebrews 2:14

Because of what Jesus had done [dying on the cross], we, who live in constant fear of death shouldn’t be afraid anymore. Jesus had freed us from that fear so we can live for Him. When we belong to God, we know that death is only the portal that leads into “eternal life”. [“Thank You Lord!].

Paul warned us, too that we also battle against the evil forces of Satan, who is a vicious fighter. But to be able to withstand their attacks, we must depend on God’s strength and use every piece of His armor. We face an army whose goal is to defeat Christ’s church. When we believe in Christ, they become our enemies. They will try any device to turn us away from the Lord.

Fear not! For God has provided His supernatural power to defeat Satan and his army, through His Holy Spirit within us. So, arm yourselves with God’s armor.

Let us be strong in the Lord's mighty power. Let's put on His whole armor to resist the enemy's attacks: put on the sturdy belt of truth and the body armor of God's righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News, so that we are well-prepared. We will need faith in every battle as our shield to stop the fiery arrows aimed by Satan and his army. Let us put on salvation as our helmet, not forgetting the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. Let's pray at all times, on every occasion in the power of the Holy Spirit. We must stay alert and be persistent in our prayers for all Christians everywhere. [Ephesians 6:10-18].