Daddy worked out of town for the railroad, but in his spare time in the 1950s, he took a course on TV repair.
Daddy had a suitcase with TV tubes and a tube tester inside. When you opened the lid, one side was the tester and the other side held a cardboard sheet with charts of equivalent tubes and instructions for operating the tester, with spare tubes in the bottom.
I would sit for hours taking the tubes out of a non-functioning TV and testing them. If they tested bad, I would look through the spare tubes to find a replacement. Sometimes he had a replacement, but usually I had to go to the charts to find an equivalent replacement, which I would then insert into the TV. If that didn’t work, I would remove another tube from the TV and test it.
This technique is called trouble-shooting and I learned it in the 1950s when I was a child, long before I took an electronics technician job at the telephone company, in 1984. For some reason, Daddy never ran me off. It didn’t seem to bother him one bit to see me sitting in the living room floor for hours, testing one tube after another. As far as I can remember, he never acted as though I might break something.
I have always said that my mother made me feel as though I could do anything and that is true, but Daddy did too. He just expected me to be inquisitive about everything.
In 1986, I went back to college, taking digital electronics. By then, Daddy had retired from the railroad and I was living next door to him and Mom.
Frequently I would show Daddy something from my classes or a computer magazine, and he would ask me about something he had read. I had to tell him I didn’t know but I sure was studying as hard and fast as I could to learn.
Proverbs 22:6 says “Train up a child a child in the way he (or she) should go. .”
Every child needs a parent that believes in the child’s ability to learn and provides opportunity for her to find the “way she should go.”
I love to watch TV shows where the police study the crime scene. Sometimes these crimes are years old, but using special techniques in forensics they can solve the crime with old evidence.
In one show I watched, investigators sprayed a special formula on a wooden floor to reveal old blood. Even though the murder had taken place years ago and the blood had been cleaned up off the floor, this formula made it show up.
The blood of Jesus is over 2000 years old, but it still exists. When Jesus shed His life’s blood on Calvary, the blood ran down His body and into the earth. His blood was perfect blood, the blood of His Father God, inherited, as every baby’s blood is, from his father. Jesus got His body from the womb of Mary, but His Spirit and blood came from God.
In Luke 24:39 KJV Jesus told the disciples after His resurrection, “Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have.” Normally you or I would say, flesh and blood, but you see, Jesus didn’t have any blood anymore. The physical portion of His blood went into the ground, but the LIFE of His blood, the supernatural, spiritual part of His blood, He took into the heavenly temple of God, into the Holy of Holies and placed it on the Mercy Seat of God, where it remains today, alive and still able to wipe away all the sins of the world.
Lev 17:11 “For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.”
The evil of this world cannot wash away the blood of Jesus, cannot overcome it, cannot hide it. It still remains. It has never lost its power to wash away sin.
I’m so thankful Jesus shed His blood.
So another birthday has rolled around for me for another year. You know what they say—it’s better to be over the hill than under it. Mama who turned 96 this year says, “It’s not bad getting old. It’s just getting all crippled up that hurts.”
Our family makes a big deal out of birthdays. When we were kids, if Mama didn’t have the money to get us something for our birthday, she said, “The whole month is your birthday month, and everything that happens during that month is for your birthday.” Then later in the month when she had the money, we might all go out to eat at Scotty’s or the Dairy Queen.
We always picked blackberries in June and July so one year she let us sell our blackberries we picked to Dairy Queen. Guess what I bought with my money? A blackberry milkshake.
Having a birthday in July meant that I never celebrated my birthday in school with my school friends, but I had plenty of friends in the neighborhood to celebrate with.
I always think first of my mother when I think of my birthday. I haven’t always been able to celebrate my birthday with my mother, but I celebrate in my heart and mind with her. Without her I would never have existed.
The Lord is keeping track of our birthdays and without Him there are no birthdays. Without the Lord, I wouldn’t even exist, but because of Him, I am able to celebrate my birthday and enjoy a life on this earth. He puts the breath of life into my body.
“Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless His holy name. Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits, who forgives all your iniquities, who heals all my diseases, who redeems yourlife from destruction, who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies, who satisfies our mouth with good things, so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.” Psalm 103:1-5New King James Version.
You know the alternative to getting old, don’t you? Not getting old, but that means dying and going to heaven and that won’t be so bad after all.
Lavon Hightower Lewis