Suppose I/we had relocated, moved to Australia back then, as occurred to me then and a stronger pull each time I went down. Or maybe the push, urge, pressing need was to leave Harrisburg, as finally happened six years later, summer 1984 immediately I finished seminary, was ordained priest, and received the call to Trinity, Apalachicola. That break finished up my defense-related business, teaching graduate courses for the political science division of the University of West Florida, cut my ties to the Navy and Washington, DC. Fourteen years in Apalachicola, then in 1998 to Panama City and, thank you, Dr. King, home at last, home at last, thank God almighty, home at last.
Away from PC, StAndrews and StAndrews Bay from 1953 to 1998, I loved Newport, Rhode Island, destroyer duty, living in Mayport, the University of Michigan, some aspects of Washington, DC. And we loved Apalachicola heart and soul. But forty-five years away from StAndrewsBay, I’ll never, never, ever do that again.
About as soon as the sun rises, we are packing into Linda’s car and heading to Tallahassee for Prism. We were there last February, a nonstop musical wonder by FSU musicians. Lunch and supper with beloveds, RON at Staybridge motel out I10 East. Thinking to swing home tomorrow by Apalachicola, but not driving so overruled.
It occurs to me that last Wednesday, February 1st, I’ve been retired from the Navy thirty-nine years. Going on forty years, and not in the wilderness.
Again, for today, Psalm 112, as a friend pointed out yesterday, twin with Psalm 111, and the commentary I read in all that scratching around yesterday morning said Psalms 111 and 112, both acrostics, should never be separated, should always be read together. So another lump of coal in my bag of gifts for the lectionary framers.
I will give thanks unto the LORD with my whole heart, in the council of the upright, and in the congregation.
2 The works of the LORD are great, sought out of all them that have delight therein.
3 His work is glory and majesty; and His righteousness endureth for ever.
4 He hath made a memorial for His wonderful works; the LORD is gracious and full of compassion.
5 He hath given food unto them that fear Him; He will ever be mindful of His covenant.
6 He hath declared to His people the power of His works, in giving them the heritage of the nations.
7 The works of His hands are truth and justice; all His precepts are sure.
8 They are established for ever and ever, they are done in truth and uprightness.
9 He hath sent redemption unto His people; He hath commanded His covenant for ever;
Holy and awful is His name.
10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; a good understanding have all they that do thereafter;
His praise endureth for ever.
Happy is the man that feareth the LORD, that delighteth greatly in His commandments.
2 His seed shall be mighty upon earth; the generation of the upright shall be blessed.
3 Wealth and riches are in his house; and his merit endureth for ever.
4 Unto the upright He shineth as a light in the darkness, gracious, and full of compassion, and righteous.
5 Well is it with the man that dealeth graciously and lendeth, that ordereth his affairs rightfully.
6 For he shall never be moved; the righteous shall be had in everlasting remembrance.
7 He shall not be afraid of evil tidings; his heart is stedfast, trusting in the LORD.
8 His heart is established, he shall not be afraid, until he gaze upon his adversaries.
9 He hath scattered abroad, he hath given to the needy; his righteousness endureth for ever;
his horn shall be exalted in honour.
10 The wicked shall see it, and be vexed; he shall gnash with his teeth, and melt away;
the desire of the wicked shall perish.