John Has a Church Nearby


John Has a Church Nearby


D. Edwin Burbee

The road stretching in front of me, its distance grinding down the will to continue is causing hypnotic staring. A plume of red dust, with hues of brown, flour like in texture arrive in my face curbing the distant gaze. Thick wooded pines, like soldiers at attention, stand guard on my right. To the left, fields of weeds appearing as uncombed hair wandering to the horizon speak words inside my head. This is desolation. But this is what you were longing for, isn’t it? Yes it is. I am an alcoholic with 3 months of sobriety. Backpacking in the Adirondack Mountains, retreating from everyone and everything is crucial. Without calluses on my feelings, once numbed with whiskey, being alone keeps sanity tight and close. My name is Ernie.

Thirty-one is too young for a drunkard, I told myself. It is not really a problem, I told myself…Lies, all lies! I took my first drink at six never stopping until May of this year. Every member of my immediate family was alcoholic; may they rest in peace. It is not their fault; “in the blood” says my AA sponsor. The search for an answer brings my distortion to this empty yet beautiful place. What am I looking for? That is mysterious. Pushing me forward is a compelling power, seeking insight just around a distant curve of path. I am a living puzzle, the 1,000 piece size, born containing 999.

The Tongue Mountain Range trail was my choice with lean-tos for overnight camping. The down side is timber rattlers; these are large snakes some approaching five feet. The upside is they are a great source of protein; The Ruger SP101, on my belt, is loaded with snake shot for that purpose. Seeing an unoccupied lean-to in the distance, I stop to set up camp.

Removing my backpack, I hear the sound of footsteps, the voice of a women behind shouts “stopping for a break”.

“Yes, where did you come from”?

I’ve been following you for miles”, she replied. Odd, I thought; wonder why I never saw her? “Are you heading for Brown Mountain, My names Vicky”?

“I’m Ernie; Vicky was my mother’s name, what are the chances”?

“Must be karma”, she quipped.

“Actually, I don’t know where I’m headed, how about you? She did not reply, only smiled.

Then she spoke, “The look on your face plus tone of voice tells me your walking away from somewhere, not to; am I correct”?

“Look, I’m just on a hike are you some kind of seer”?

“Never been called that before, but that’s fairly close” she responded.

“Close, close to what?”

“Ernie lets start a fire and I’ll brew up some tea”.

“OK Ms. Seer, but watch out for snakes”.

“Snakes stay away from me Ernie”.

Fire started and water set to boil we sat down on a log, she spoke first.

“What are you searching for”? Her voice is melodic and when she speaks, a profound peace overwhelms.

“A solution to a problem Vicky, I’m a drunk, been dry since May, seeking a cure or a way to live without booze; make sense?” She poked at the fire. Sparks winking in darkness compliment the unusual feeling of peace.

Pausing a moment, her tuneful voice plays; “inside of everyone’s soul is a door without a knob. Behind that door is a closet with a cloak hanging on a hook. Most think past this door an entire lifetime”.

“Vicky, how do I open this door”?

“You knock and it opens, then you put on the robe. To tap on the door is accomplished by praying the sinner’s prayer”.

“Vicky, what are you some sort of minister”? Again, no reply just a smile.

Alright, what is the robe or cloak for”?

“It is the robe of forgiveness, a complete pardon awaits anyone who knocks and asks the Almighty One to forgive all past sins. Donning the robe marks you as His, gifting eternal life. But the road to life forever is strait not impassable; The Great Spirit will guide you, for you are no longer alone”. Reaching out she placed a stone in my hand. “What is this”, I inquire, and “it feels warm”.

“Ernie this is for you, it is syenite a form of granite. Keep it forever as a reminder of this moment. John has a church nearby, all your answers are there”.

“John, John who”?

She stood placing her hand on my shoulder, “John the Baptist”.

“This Church, how do I find it”?

“Just walk you’ll see…just walk”.

Opening the side flap on my backpack I placed the stone inside. “Thank you Vicky, would you like another cup of tea? Vicky”? She was gone! Looking up and down the trail there was no sign of her; vanishing almost instantly without a sound.

Sitting back down on the log, I begin to cry. Flowing tears of sorrow breach the dam of resentment. Manacles of memories melt instilling peace. The queen of sleep reintroduces herself; drifting, drifting then suddenly sunrise.

At daylight, I leave the lean-to and begin to walk, following an off-shoot path. There is not a thought as to direction, walking excitedly, and just placing one foot in front of the other. When the sun is high, a church steeple comes into view. Reaching the building I read the name, “Fellowship Baptist“.

The Minister greets me at the door. “What can I do for you”?

“I want to pray the sinner’s prayer and be saved” The words come out without thinking.

“At this time, you are exactly where you’re supposed to be, follow me”, he directed.

That was 34 years ago. Sobriety and the Great Spirit live within. The syenite rock is still in my pocket. I now know that Vicky is my Guardian Angel and one day we will meet again, only this time I will be wearing the cloak of forgiveness.





Last night, in the state of Maryland, a young mother was shot to death in a liquor store. A twenty-three year old man was found shot to death in his car. Two dead and several wounded at a dance studio; every victim was Black. Why am I posting these murders? Simple stated no one appears to be outraged. Where are all those floor sitters?. You know the undignified Democrats who broke to feed their faces.

I am singling out the four dead from last night to make a point. Liberal’s have great difficulty grasping the meaning of “Assault Rifle”. This unveils a perceived lack of knowledge. I do not believe they lack the meaning of the phrase Assault rifle.I am convinced that the loudest Liberals are keenly aware of the difference between Automatic, Semi-Automatic, and that Assault rifles have a selector switch allowing a choice between the two.

My point is this; Black youth is being murdered via gunshot night after night after night without one word from those floor-sitters. In 2013 11,419 people were killed by gun fire. A few data-points. Of the 11,419 people who died from guns in 2013, 84% were male, and nearly half (48%) were under 30. Most were killed with a handgun, and the majority were Black. Elizabeth Warren remarked, “We lose 8 children and teenagers to gun violence every day. If a mysterious virus suddenly started killing 8 of our children every day, America would mobilize teams of doctors and public health officials. We would move heaven and earth until we found a way to protect our children. But not so with gun violence”.

Ms. Warren is fixated on Assault Rifles. Does she actually believe the weapon of choice were Assault Rifles in the deaths of 11,419 people?  Of course not, she is very aware of the facts. So why do we constantly hear the opposite? The issue runs much deeper than an AR-15.  It runs past guns as a whole and shines a light on the real reason; disarm Americans. Not all Americans just Conservatives to keep the opposition armed. A loud clamor will erupt if you make this charge, but truth has a way of pushing back soil like a seedling; you cannot hide truth.In the past decade twenty-four Americans were killed by terrorist gun fire while 280,000 were killed by guns.

Does anyone reading this understand that you can pick a street in any major city where the hood is and with the proper cash purchase a gun? The serial numbers will be missing, which should wake you up. Not one of those Black Congressmen and women, not one of those Black leaders, no Liberal Senators are interested. NO ONE SEEMS TO GIVE A RIP AS BLACK KIDS DIE. Here is why, they want to disarm Conservative Americans. Addressing the enormous flow of every type of handgun, rifle, or shotgun illegally in the street would ruin their quest to add gun law upon gun law eventually reaching their goal. Folks, it isn’t about the hundreds of thousands of firearms easily trading hands every night in the street, it is not about the incredible number of Black kids that die each night. If it were, their agenda would dissolve; it is the satanic ideology of Liberal leaders; deftly orchestrated yet no longer hidden.





Ever walk into a darkened restaurant on a bright sunny day? It takes awhile for your eyes to adjust…You need to get “use to it;”and that is what happened to many people; they became used to darkness…The darkness of Satan becomes normal over time…In the black ink of iniquity anything is acceptable…All matters of normal are altered to meet your lifestyle…If you have been saved, and accepted Jesus Christ as your savior then you have nothing to do with the new normal; nothing…PC is the roof over new normal…Inside is evil, where all forms of depravity hide…It is the complete absence of Jesus…America has gotten use to darkness…It wallows in sin…It is modern-day Sodom…Step out of the darkness into the waiting arms of Our Lord…A complete pardon awaits…Stop and define eternity, then ask yourself where would you rather spend it….

Polarized Ideology


We are living in an era of social beliefs becoming ever more clear-cut and extreme. The educational system in these United States has deteriorated into social brainwashing. Rather than imparting a balanced curriculum, allowing young men and women to form their own opinions, the Liberal agenda brain-stamps our youth. Everything is just fine, no boundaries on actions, all are self and virtue diminishes and dies. The attraction is complete freedom without repercussion.
Does it make sense not to kill, not to steal, not to lie? What about compassion for others? All this and more are part and parcel of The Ten Commandments…Oh I see where the writer is headed, going to shove Christianity down my throat, you may think…However I am using the application of The Ten Commandments as a better way to live…They are common sense foundational thinking.
If someone shoots and kills your only child, rapes your wife, sexually assaults your granddaughter do you deem this acceptable? Complete freedom insures these horrid events become common place; which they are.
Extreme social beliefs have become insane, with the internet being the death weapon of choice. We now have transgender bathrooms for school children, rioting and looting labeled acceptable, murdering police in cold blood, and reshaping reality like potting clay into fiction (hands up don’t shoot).
Unlimited freedom is a strong ideological belief in the United States. Some follow ideological ideals that are logical, while others take stands that are idiotic or illogical, like the aforementioned.
Polarized ideology insures absence of communication, without which civil war becomes a reality. Where lays an answer for restoration of these United States to a country of laws and law-abiding citizens unafraid of work? In a word, GOD…..

Self Gratification


self gratification

Self gratification is as addictive as any drug…The more taken being directly proportional to the amount needed…The balloon of gratification, held by the user, can not be filled with an infinite amount of stuff; it eventually bursts sending the user crashing into reality…

Smoked Turkey


Smoked a turkey for today. Most of the cost was for the ashtray.