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The Letter

Dear Friends Through Christ,

Last month in the newsletter I mentioned that one of the benefits of Christianity is that Jesus instructs us to address the God of Creation as if we are addressing a Loving Parent. Jesus says, “When you pray say, “Our Father.”  We can talk to God as a Daddy.  Therefore, we all need to find a place, any place where we can have those long and sometimes difficult conversations with our Father in Heaven.  And folks, for me, the time and place is standing on the shores of the great Atlantic Ocean, the second largest Baptismal Font in the world, walking the shallows and hunting for Baptismal shells.  Here I have some of the longest and strangest conversations with my heavenly Father. That’s right! Yes, I talk to God constantly, especially on vacation and not ashamed of it. Some may think I’m crazy, but that’s fine. Because over the years I am absolutely convinced that God talks back.  The Spirit of God speaks to our inmost being!  God speaks to our heart and minds!  Can I listen?  Do I obey?

Well, this year at the beach I promised God that my heart and mind would be open to listen and do whatever You needed me to do.  Allow me to share one of the craziest “God Moments” I have had in quite some time.  It’s sort of like an episode of the Twight Zone!

Sandy and I left for Ocean Isle, NC at 4 AM Wednesday morning, May 15th.  You see, low tide  happens at 8:40 PM on that day, and the only time one can find shells is at low tide.  So, if we can get there early, there would be enough time to unpack, go grocery shopping, that way I can head to the point about 6:30 PM.  The tide would be low enough to get where I need to be, and I would have almost two hours of daylight to search the shallows, starting our vacation with what I love to do most—hunting for Baptismal shells and talking to God.      


I have one of those personalities that doesn’t show a lot of emotions, but getting ready to take that walk, inside I’m like a little kid in a candy store.  It is now 6:35 PM, Sandy, Ginger (our dog), Donna (my sister) and Skylar (her dog) are ready to start our vacation!  My daughter and her husband show up later.  (Thank you blessing us with this opportunity)

We had walked about ½ mile and now some heavy clouds start rolling in. It began to rain and then a little harder and little harder.  Donna and Sandy had the sense to turn around and head back, but no, it looked like over the horizon the weather cleared a little.  So, I put my head down and walked straight into the wind and rain toward my oasis. (Good thing I wore a shirt and a hat, cause that rain stung.) The whole time I’m walking, I’m just talking away.  Yes, I had told God that I am open to His Will, but I gotta know what that Will is? You see, Peace Lutheran is the longest place I’ve ever stayed put anywhere, at any time of my life.  Usually, something comes up about every four or five years and I feel called to move along. Yet even after six hard but good years at Peace, I still wonder what I should be doing next.  I was hoping a trip like this might clear some cobwebs.  I also said, “Since I am willing to listen, Lord.  It sure would be nice find a whole bunch of shells this week.  That one should be easy for You.  Of course I enjoy it, but I give them away to glorify Your name.  Sure would be nice, Lord!” 

Remember when I wrote it looked like it might clear up?  Well, it did!  The very first shell I found was a beautiful giant conk, I’ll show it to you on Sunday, but that was only the beginning.  In front of me lie five huge Conkle Shells (Baptismal Symbols), and to my left a couple more, just sitting there in the open. Incredible! I started thanking God like a little child thanks his daddy for a great unexpected gift.


As I walked that point, standing ¼ mile from any shoreline, surrounded by water on all four sides, picking up shell after shell, I found myself thinking of all the good things we have done at Peace, all the challenges we have face, and how bright our future could be.

Since this conversation with God seemed to be going quite well, I found myself asking for specifics, like what can I/we be doing?  The answer I was listening for would hopefully be something we could do here at Peace.  I listened, but in my mind, I hear or imagine, “Write a letter.”  I’m like, “Fine, I like writing letters.  You know they are a lost art. Hard to fit together a good letter, but persuasive if done right. What do want me to write, Lord?”  Again, I imagine hearing, “Write the same letter to two different people.”  Now, I just got to see where this leads, so I ask, “What two people?” 

You do realize the mind is a funny thing because the names that popped into my head were Donald Trump and Joe Biden. (no titles were given).  Now it’s simply weird. The very first words out of my mouth were, “Why?  What good is that?  Nobody is going open, much less read.  Why?  What the hell would I say anyway?  This is stupid.  Stop playing with my mind!”

Remember, how I wrote that the weather cleared up?  Well, once I started questioning whatever I heard/imagined, nature had something more to show me. I’m standing on a sandbar, soaking wet, when God graced me with one of the greatest spectacles of wind, rain, and lightning that I have ever personally witnessed. The next ½ hour or so were some of the most exhilarating moments of my 68 years of existence.  Folks, God is awesome!!! I was in awe!!!!  I don’t think I was scared, but I did figure if I agreed to write the silly letter, then surely God would have no reason to electrocute me. After all, it’s not that big of a task. Just write a letter. So, I took my hat off, looked straight into that wind and rain and said, “Ok, ok, I will write your letter to President Trump and President Biden, even though I still have no idea why or what you want me what to say.” 

Within just a couple of moments, the wickedness of the storm passed. I’m not dead and not one more shell can fit in my bag.  I thanked God repeatedly for the special experience and display of His Majesty.  The storm began to break in the west, the sun made his final presence known for the day, and as I turned east to make the long walk home, carrying a 15# bag of shells, in front of me, due east was the most perfect rainbow, with all the colors, surrounded by dark clouds above and almost white one in the center. 

On the walk back, I couldn’t help but reflect on the past couple of hours. I have come to the conclusion that right now I am where I am supposed to be, Peace Lutheran Church. Why?  Because we have a lot of work in front of us. Plus, now we have hundreds and hundreds of Baptismal Shells to share with our loved ones and friends who are searching for someone to talk to, someone who will listen, and someone who speaks to our innermost being.  Every single person who reads this letter should make a special effort to find a place, any place, find the time to have long and sometimes difficult talks with your Father in Heaven.  Ask God, Jesus anything, everything and often. Keep at it. Then listen.  Listen with your heart and mind as to what God desires. Like I said, I am quite convinced that sometimes God talks back. 

What is God calling you to do?  You will never know unless you ask your heavenly Father!  Then are you willing to listen?  And finally, are you willing to obey?

Again, thanks for the vacation.  Gotta go write a letter to Donald Trump and Joe Biden. 

Wish me luck! 

In Christian Love,

Pastor Trexler







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