Sunday, June 25, 2017

Letter From Grace Lawry to William Lawry - March 17, 1923

Before he died my Uncle Lloyd Lawry put together a collection of stories and family history. I was blessed to have been given a copy of his collection. This letter was included in the collection, and was written by Grace Lawry to William Lawry, Grandpa Lawry's son by his first marriage, after Grandpa Lawry's death.

Bronson, Kansas
March 17, 1923

My Dear Willie for you are the same to me as when I first saw you so many years ago. I was indeed thankful that you thought enough of me to write so kind a letter. May God bless you and make you a good father to your children who he has entrusted to you to care for.

Well Billie times are hard with us too. Jimmie has not been able to do a days work for over a year and is no better now. I have always had to work so hard to try to have something for my children to eat when they was young, and as fast as the boys growed up they went to work for themselves. So Sadie is all I have to help me unless dear Jimmie gets strong again.

I always tried hard to be a good wife and mother. Sometimes I think I have made a failure. But Billie, I can say Pa always had some money of his very own. I always gave him part of any I had and he was always willing to loan one of the children a dollar if they wanted it. I miss hlm every place.

He was getting childish. He talked so much about old times. He always said he never wanted to suffer like hls father did. He died so easy. Sadie and I had just put him in a rocking chair and brought him from his bedroom into the setting room. And he laid down on his couch and I was going to put his socks on when I saw he was dying and Sadie saw and said Oh Ma he is dead.

His last words were “Come on Grace." He had quit chewing tobacco and maybe that made him weak. He said that just before Christmas he dreamed that his little brother Jimmie came to him and took hold of his hand and said Pa do you chew tobacco and he said yes Jimmie and little Jimmie said Pa you must quit using tobacco or you can’t come to heaven and Billie he quit. Wasn't he brave after using it so long. He told everyone his dream. He thought of it so much.

It seems like I have had so many hard trials but I am still trusting One who has promised never to leave us or forsake us. That is a blessed hope for me.

Dear Sadie is so discouraged. She hasn’t taught school for so long and has had so much expense, and feels her father's death so deeply dear child.

It is cold and windy today. It has been nice winter and we may have a late spring.

I hope you and your family are all well. As you know you never sent me your last boys picture; is he as sweet as Floyd. Well tell your wife and Isola I think of them. Please write soon and often for we are lonesome. From one who will always remember you.

Mother.



For more of Uncle Lloyd's Scrapbook, click here.

Friday, June 23, 2017

A Big Lie


Has anyone ever told a lie about you – how did you feel?  It doesn’t feel good.  A few years ago I spent quite a little time on a local internet forum.  I enjoyed being a part of conversations on a variety of topics. The forum was supposed to be anonymous, and it was against the rules to use people’s real names.  One of the participants posted lies about me and my business on the forum.  I never knew who posted the lies.  I have no idea how many people believed them. Recently I have experienced similar things in my church.

If you have had lies told about you; I’m sure you didn’t like it.  Imagine how God feels when lies are told about him.  From the very beginning, Satan’s plan has been to tell lies about God.  Speaking about Satan in John 8:44, Jesus said, “You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.”


Let’s look at the story in Genesis 3: 1-4, “Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, ‘Has God indeed said, “You shall not eat of every tree of the garden”?’

And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.’ Then the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die.”

The very first lie that Satan told was, “You won’t die.”  Interestingly, even though God has made it very clear, many people today believe this first lie.  We know that Satan says “You won’t die.”  Let’s see what God has to say.


Romans 6:23 – “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Proverbs 11:19 – “As righteousness leads to life, So he who pursues evil pursues it to his own death.”

Proverbs 19:16 – “He who keeps the commandment keeps his soul, But he who is careless of his ways will die.”

Romans 8:6 – “For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.”

James 1:15 – “Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death.”

Revelation 21:8 – “But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”

God says that sin leads to death, but many Christians say something very different.


Southern Baptists recently reaffirmed that hell is an "eternal, conscious punishment" for those who do not accept Jesus.

The teaching of the Roman Catholic Church affirms the existence of hell and its eternity. Immediately after death, the souls of those who die in a state of mortal sin descend into hell, where they suffer the punishments of hell, "eternal fire.”

The Methodist Church teaches that following the resurrection and the final judgment before God, unbelievers and the followers of Lucifer will be cast forever into the Lake of Fire. There they will exist forever without being consumed.

Pentecostals believe that those who die in their sins without seeking God's forgiveness through Jesus Christ will spend eternity in a literal hell. Pentecostals believe that people's souls consciously exist eternally, whether in the bliss of heaven or the punishment of hell.

But God says, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Many Christians say that the wicked will live forever. What did Satan tell Eve?  Even if you disobey God, You will not die.

Paul was concerned that just as Eve believed Satan’s lie, so would Christians.


He wrote in 2 Corinthians 11:3, “But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.” Don’t be led astray by Satan’s craftiness. Does the Bible really teach that God will keep people alive forever in hell just to suffer torment that never ends? If that is not what the Bible teaches, then it is a slander against God.

The character of God is maligned when we say he tortures and burns people forever. Today that first recorded lie in the Bible is being repeated by well-meaning pastors who use hellfire sermons to try to scare unconverted sinners into repentance.

I recently read an article that stated, “we need a fresh wave of great awakeners—those who will unapologetically preach hell fire in today's dire end times.” The author went on to say, “we need hell fire preachers to emerge and announce to the church and the world the reality of their situation and the measure of God's wrath and judgment that is coming. Contrary to popular belief a very real revelation of hell, of torment, of God's holiness and of our desperation and wickedness is needed to draw people to the Lover of their souls!”

Is this kind of thinking in line with what the Bible teaches? Is it a proper representation of God’s character?


Let’s take a look at God’s character. Psalms 89:14 says, “Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne; Mercy and truth go before Your face.”

Deuteronomy 32:4 – “He is the Rock, His work is perfect; For all His ways are justice, A God of truth and without injustice; Righteous and upright is He.”

In Job 4:17 the question is asked, “Can a mortal be more righteous than God? Can a man be more pure than his Maker?”

Mainstream Christianity asks us to believe that our Heavenly Father hates unrepentant sinners so much that He tortures them in flames through ceaseless ages when sinful humans wouldn’t even submit a dog to that kind of suffering?  What kind of justice is that?


C.H. Pinnock, a Christian theologian, once wrote that if hellfire really tortures sinners forever, for all eternity, "It would make Hitler a third-degree saint, and the concentration camps picnic grounds.  Everlasting torture is intolerable from a moral point of view because it pictures God acting like a bloodthirsty monster who maintains an everlasting Auschwitz for His enemies whom He does not even allow to die."

What kind of a person would burn someone alive and deliberately prolong the process? And enjoy it, savor it?

Many sincere people are saying, "If the Bible teaches that God tortures sinners in hell forever, then I reject the Bible. And I reject that kind of God."

In Romans 2:5,6, the apostle Paul speaks of the “righteous judgment of God, who “will render to each one according to his deeds.”


Surely it would be all out of proportion to torture the wicked for eternity for the sins of a brief lifetime. God has never been a vengeful tyrant, and He won’t become a vengeful tyrant when the time arrives to punish the wicked.

The doctrine of eternal conscious torment is in error because it is contrary to the biblical teaching that there is life only in Christ. 1 John 5:12 says, “He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.”

A person burning in hell would not have a pleasant life, but he would have life. According to the Bible, the wages of sin is death, not eternal torment.

If the doctrine of eternal conscious torment is true, then there are several Bible writers that owe the world an apology:

1)  David said:  "But the wicked shall perish; And the enemies of the Lord, Like the splendor of the meadows, shall vanish. Into smoke they shall vanish away." (Psalm 37:20)

2)  Jesus said:  "Do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell." (Matthew 10:28)

3)  Paul wrote: "For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: whose end is destruction.”

4)  The Lord of hosts said by Malachi: "For behold, the day is coming, Burning like an oven, And all the proud, yes, all who do wickedly will be stubble. And the day which is coming shall burn them up, Says the Lord of hosts, That will leave them neither root nor branch.” (Malachi 4:1)


Another dilemma for those who believe in eternal conscious torment is the measure of what it cost the Son of God to ransom the sinner. Jesus gave His life to redeem us. Sin is a capital offense. The penalty for the unrepentant sinner must match the penalty Christ paid for sin, his life, not eternal life in hellfire.

If the wicked live eternally in the fire, then they have the same thing as the righteous except in a different place. Who could give them eternal life but Jesus? John 3:16 settles this issue so clearly and simply.  I like the way it reads in the new version The Voice.  “For God expressed His love for the world in this way: He gave His only Son so that whoever believes in Him will not face everlasting destruction, but will have everlasting life.”

Those who do not believe in Jesus will perish. They will die. They will face everlasting destruction. They will die the second death; an eternal death from which they will never be raised. That death will never end. It is everlasting destruction, an endless, eternal punishment because it is an endless, eternal death.

And what about those who believe in Jesus and receive everlasting life? John described their future home in these words, “And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.” Revelation 21:4.


Can you find any room in those wonderful words for any suffering on the part of anybody in the whole recreated universe? God said crying and pain would be no more. Would someone in eternal torment cry? Would they be in pain? If you knew that your loved ones were being subjected to the most horrible painful torture how would you feel? Would you cry? Do you believe God’s Word or do you choose to believe man's teaching?

I’m thankful that there is no eternally burning hell. Unfortunately, it’s a myth, or should I say fortunately? It’s fortunate that it’s not true. But it’s unfortunate that so many people have been told it is true.

The most wonderful news is that nobody needs to be lost or burned in any hell at all. All of us can have everlasting life through Jesus Christ, through simple faith in Him. I hope you’ll choose to have faith in Jesus. That is Good News I can believe in.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

The Helms Family

Before he died my Uncle Lloyd Lawry put together a collection of stories and family history. I was blessed to have been given a copy of his collection. This is the story he wrote about the Helms family.


The Helms Family
by Lloyd Lawry


My Grandma, Grace Yeager, was born near Lawrenceville, Indiana in Dearborn County on April 22, 1856; The daughter of Nicholas and Ellenor Yeager.

In 1867 when she was 11 years o1d she came to Kansas with her parents and her brother John W., her sister Nancy, and her half-brother Willie. They made the trip in a covered wagon pulled by oxen. They settled in what is now Allen County.

Nicholas Yeager's parents were Joseph and Margaret (Everlee) Yeager. Ellenor Yeager's parents were John Wilson and Grace (Van Kirk) Wilson.

Grandma's mother Ellenor Yeager died in 1870. Her Daddy, Nicholas Yeager, died in 1880. They are both buried in Old Elsmore Cemetary south of Moran, Kansas.

Grandma married her first husband, Daniel Helms, on March 2, 1876, at Elsmore, Kansas. She was 18, and he was 32.

Daniel Helms bought the old home place near Bronson, Kansas on a "State Patent." My cousin Lowell Lawry obtained a copy of the patent and gave me a copy.

The patent was not issued until 1887, apparently only after Grandma and Grandpa Lawry took out a mortgage on the place in 1887, though Daniel Helms had died in 1880.

Grandma and Daniel Helms first lived in a one room house located about 1/4 mile south of the second house which Daniel built later. Their two sons Henry Finley Helms and James N. Helms were born in the first house.

Nannie Leota Helms, their only daughter, was born after her Daddy's death in the second house which her Daddy had built before he died.

Daniel Helms died tragically in 1880. He was just recuperating from typhoid fever when a neighbor's cows got into his cornfield and ruined a lot of it. Daniel had a very quick temper, and against the protest of a friend, Wm. H. Fuhrman, he went to the neighbor's house and got into a very heated dispute. Apparently already weak from his recent illness and extremely upset, he again became ill.

Grandma had Mr. Fuhrman go to Uniontown for the doctor (Dr.Halm). When he got there, he explained the circumstances to the doctor. The doctor said he was sure Mr. Herms was going to die, but that he would go to see him. Mr. Herms died that evening, October 7, 1880. He and Grandma had been married only four years and seven months. He is buried in the Old Elsmore Cemetary.

That was a tragic time for Grandma. At the age of 23, she was a widow with two little boys, ages four years and one year, and she was expecting another baby.

After Mr. Helms was buried, Grandma took her last 50 dollars and bought his tombstone which stands in the Old Elsmore Cemetary. Grandma's friends and relatives tried to get her to keep the money to care for her two boys and the baby she was expecting, but she said she might never have the money again and she wanted him to have a grave marker. The inscription on his grave marker reads, "Free from all care and pain, Asleep my body lies, until the final resurrection calls, The dead in Christ Arise.”

I have always felt that Grandma loved Daniel Helms more than my Grandpa Lawry. When she died, she was buried next to Mr. Helms; several spaces away from my Grandpa.

Aunt Nannie Helms was born in 1881 several months after her Daddy died. I had wondered how Grandma managed on the farm with three IittIe children. Oscar Burrows said that Grandma went to live with her sister in Uniontown. She rented the farm to Sam Helms, a relative of her late husband.

Three children were born to my Grandma and Daniel Helms:
1. Henry F. Helms - Born 1876 - Died 1892 of typhoid fever
2. James N. Helms - Born 1879 - Died 1959 - never married
3. Nannie L. Helms - Born 1881 - Died 1954

Aunt Nannie married John Burrows. Their only child, Oscar M. Burrows was born November 19, 1904. He married Beulah M. Skaggs on September 17, 1928. They had two children, Alvin D. Burrows - born July 23, 1929, and DeVaughn J. Burrows - born November 27, 1931.

Aunt Nannie died February 27, 1954, in the Main Street Hospital in Ft. Scott, Kansas. Uncle John Burrows died January 14, 1963, in Uniontown, Kansas. They are buried in Bronson Cemetary.

Aunt Nannie was a sweet, gentle woman like her mother. I never knew her very well. My last memory of her is when I spent the night with her and Uncle John Burrows. I had hitch-hiked over to Nevada, Missouri in search of a job and got back to Bronson about dusk. I remember I slept in a cold bedroom on a big feather bed with plenty of quilts.

Uncle Jim Helms seemed to me to be an old man when I first knew him. He was 50 when I was 10. I have a precious memory of him. Kathy and I walked into his little church in Bronson one Sunday morning with our Bibles in our hands, and he met us with big tears in his eyes, happy that we had come to worship the Lord with him.

Beulah Burrows, Aunt Nannie's daughter-in-law was leading the singing. They were singing "The Old Account Was Settled Long Ago.” I had never heard the hymn, but they sang all seven verses, and before it was finished, I was singing right along with them.



For more of Uncle Lloyd's Scrapbook, click here.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

The Lonely Boy

My An Arkie's Faith column from the June 21, 2017, issue of The Mena Star.


Once upon a time, in a land far far away, there lived a lonely boy. In that same land, there lived a girl with beautiful golden hair. One day as the lonely boy walked into history class, he looked across the room and saw the girl with beautiful golden hair. His heart jumped, and he was sure that this was love at first sight. He knew that he had to get up the courage to talk to this vision of loveliness with the beautiful golden curls.

The lonely boy was too shy to talk to girls, so it was almost a year before the girl with the beautiful golden hair had any idea that the lonely boy was interested. The good Lord knew that the lonely boy needed all of the help he could get; so the Lord made it so that the lonely boy and the girl with the beautiful golden hair crossed paths in several ways that year.

The history teacher selected five students to work together each week producing learning packets for history class. The girl with the beautiful golden hair and the lonely boy were both in the group that met in the library each week to produce the history learning packets. They both worked at the furniture factory. The lonely boy worked on the dresser jig, and the girl with the beautiful golden hair made drawers. The lonely boy would spend his break time with the drawer makers, but the girl with the beautiful golden hair still didn't catch on.

It came time for their high school graduation, and the lonely boy still had never gotten up the nerve to ask the girl with the beautiful golden hair out on a date. Finally, the lonely boy mustered up every ounce of courage he could find and asked the girl with the beautiful golden hair if she would march with him at the graduation. She told him that she would like to, but that she had already told another boy that she would march with him. If the lonely boy talked to the other boy and it was okay with him, she would march with the lonely boy. Once again the lonely boy summoned up every bit of courage he had and spoke to the other boy, who was very gracious and bowed out. The lonely boy was on cloud nine. The girl with the beautiful golden hair would be walking down the aisle beside him when they graduated.


This fairytale had a very happy ending. After a year of a long distance relationship, with five hundred miles separating them, the lonely boy and the girl with the beautiful golden hair were finally in the same place at the same time. Then the lonely boy knew that he wanted to spend the rest of his life with the girl with the beautiful golden hair. On a marvelous June day, they were married in a fairytale wedding.

Most fairy tales are not true stories, but I can assure you that this one is true. I was that lonely boy. If you ask me if I believe in love at first sight, I will tell you that I do. I also know that God believes in love at first sight.


The Bible tells us that “God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8 (NKJV) And in 1 John 4:19 (NCV) we read, “we love because God first loved us.”

God created you as an object of his love. David understood this when he wrote, “You made my whole being. You formed me in my mother’s body.” Psalms 139:13 (ICB) He made you so that He could love you and so you could love him. God’s love for you is the reason you are alive.


God has loved you longer than you can even imagine. Ephesians 1:4 (NLV) tells that “even before the world was made, God chose us for Himself because of His love.” It wasn’t just love at first sight; it was love before you were even born.

Just like a marriage relationship has its good days and its bad days, so does our relationship with God. Some days our hearts are full of love for God. Some days we are rebellious and angry with Him. But the good news is that God loves you on your bad days as much as he loves you on your good days. He loves you when you can feel his love, and he loves you when you aren’t sure that He even exists. He loves you whether or not you think you deserve his love.


There is nothing you can do that will make God stop loving you. In Romans 8:38,39 (NCV) Paul wrote, “I am sure that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor ruling spirits, nothing now, nothing in the future, no powers, nothing above us, nothing below us, nor anything else in the whole world will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Gentle Reader, are you lonely and looking for love? God has already chosen you. He loved you before you were even born. If you will just love Him back, He has promised you a happily ever after. In John 14:2,3 (NKJV) Jesus tells us, “I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.”

Monday, June 19, 2017

The Lawry Family

Before he died my Uncle Lloyd Lawry put together a collection of stories and family history. I was blessed to have been given a copy of his collection. This is the story he wrote about the Lawry family.


The Lawry Family
by Lloyd Lawry




Grandma, Mrs. Grace (Yeager) Helms, was married to my grandpa, George W. Lawry, on May 2, 1886.

It is indicative of the hard times they were to experience that, only one year after Grandma and Grandpa were married, they had to mortgage the farm that Daniel Helms, her first husband, had bought. The patent covering Mr. Helms purchase of the farm was issued at that time (1887). Apparently, the farm stayed in Daniel Helms name untiL 1929, when after Grandma Lawry's death, Aunt Sadie bought it from the heirs of "Dan Helms and Grace Helms Lawry,” for $2000.

The patent states "said tract has been purchased by the said Daniel Helms, and he paid, therefore, the fuIl amount of the purchase money, and interest, as appears from the certificate of the county clerk of Allen County Kansas, deposited in the state land office.”

Aunt Sadie was born March 20, 1887, just less than a year after Grandma and Grandpa Lawry were married. At that time Grandpa's eyesight had probably begun to fail as he was blinded by cataracts in 1888 when Sadie was only a year old. At the time he lost his eyesight they had Sadie and the three Helms children, Henry, James, and Nannie to support.

This is an excerpt from a letter Grandma wrote to William Lawry, Grandpa's son by his first marriage, after Grandpa's death in 1923: "I have always had to work so hard to try to have something for my children to eat when they was young, and as fast as the boys growed up they went to work for themselves.”

My Daddy said he worked the farm by himself when he was 11. This was with horse-drawn plows and cultivators. The operator had to walk behind them up and down the long rows. If they raised corn, it had to be shucked by hand.

Grandma and Grandpa Lawry had seven children:
Sadie Emma Lawry - born March 20, 1887 - died December 24, 1973 - never married
George Newton Lawry - born March 5, 1889 - died March 13, 1959 - married Gladys Moore
Jimmie Armlne Lawry - born April 3, 1891 - died December 29, 1955 - never married
Mary Susie Lawry - born March 20, 1893 - died June 27, 1990 - married John Ermel
Bennie Eugene Lawry - born February 15, 1895 - died December 2, 1981 - married (1st) Lucille McDaniel – 1918 divorced. Married (2nd) Hazel Reeve - 1927
Johnnie William Lawry – born April 17, 1897 – died October 9, 1984 – married Chrystal Faye Larue
Charlie Everett Lawry - born October 25, 1899 – died September 25, 1901

Grandma Lawry was a sweet, gentle woman who worked terribly hard all of her married life. She loved the Lord and loved her family. She was extremely frugal. As an example, Sadie had bought some old- fashioned high button shoes for 25 cents a pair. After Grandma's death, one pair was found in her closet with corn cobs wedged inside the heel to stretch them. Sadie always required her Mother to work very hard.

Although small in stature, Grandma Lawry was a giant in the Lord. In renewing her subscription to The Church Herald and Holiness Banner she wrote, “Jesus keeps all care away and watches over me every moment of my life. Praise His Name! Even though I am 72 years old, He is the same Dear Friend yesterday and today and as long as life shall last.”

Just before she died, she lifted her arms and cried; “Bright! Bright!” Perhaps Jesus gave her a glimpse of His glory and heaven.

She requested her children to read 1 Samuel 16:7 when she had gone home to be with Jesus. “But the Lord said unto Samuel, look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature, because I have refused Him; for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.”



For more of Uncle Lloyd's Scrapbook, click here.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

My Daddy


Today is Daddy's 62nd Father's Day.  I know because I have been around for every one of them.  I have spent most of my life working along side my Daddy.  Here is proof.  I learned the auto body trade very young.

How Long Have I Been Sanding

Through the years some of the things that I have learned from my Daddy are the importance of having God in your life, and how to work.  Here are some photos of Daddy working through the years.


















30 Model A








Happy Daddy's day.  Some people have fathers, but I have always had a Daddy.