Rescuing a Lizard

By Mark Hopper I recently heard in the news that a woman called “911” because she was being strangled and bitten by her Boa Constrictor.  Fortunately, she was rescued by local law enforcement and survived this frightening event. My story is on a much smaller scale and not as dramatic.  Actually, I was not attacked by […]

A Manila Envelope

By Mark Hopper   Recently, I received a large Manila envelope in the mail from my brother.  He is my favorite brother. Actually, he is my only brother! He sends me a birthday card every year and signs it – “Your Favorite Brother”. I wasn’t sure what he was sending me .  My birthday is […]

Men and Women

By Mark Hopper My wife and I recently enjoyed a restful vacation at an older beach community.  The setting was lovely and the weather was great.  We really enjoyed our time there. We stayed at a condo a short walk from the beach.  Sometimes we would drive to a nearby coffee shop or breakfast place […]

Where’s My Bag?

By Mark Hopper Recently, my son and I took a father son golf trip.  My wife came along to cook for us and to clean our golf clubs each day (just kidding). My son and I enjoy playing golf and sharing time together.  He is a good golfer and can really hit the ball a […]

A Cow Bell

By Pastor Mark Hopper Many years ago my wife and I and a group of adults from our church traveled to Romania.  We worked in partnership with a young pastor and growing church in the middle of the country. In addition to visiting their church in the city of Cluj, we spent a week together in a rural […]

A Small Box

By Mark Hopper I think most husbands have difficulty finding gifts for their wife.  After many years of marriage, it is hard to think of something new and creative to give her. From a husband’s perspective,  most wives who have been married for 25 or 30 years have everything they need.  We have been married 45 years!  What […]

Looks Can Be Deceiving

By Mark Hopper   My wife and I have been to a number of different countries around the world.  Recently, we were in Central Europe.  It is beautiful.  The mountains are snow capped and the hillsides are lush and green. Many of the buildings are hundreds of years old, especially in the older established parts […]

Changing Times

By Pastor Mark Hopper My grandmother was born in Boone, Iowa in 1896.  She died in 1978. She taught in a one-roomed country school house. Life sounded pretty simple in those days. During her life time, she witnessed many changes.  She remembered seeing her first automobile.  She remembered electricity coming to her small farming community. […]

Playing Catch

By Pastor Mark Hopper On a recent trip, my wife and I were able to visit some of our out-of-town grandchildren.  They have grown up so much since we saw them last summer.  It was delightful to spend time with them. One grandson specifically requested that I bring a baseball and a glove so that […]

A Personal Touch

By Pastor Mark Hopper   It seems that whenever you call a local utility or cable provider, you get voice mail.  The voice on the other end of the line seems cheerful and friendly, but it’s just a computer that you’re talking to. Recently, I called my local cable company to request a reduction in […]

Golfing Fore The Kids

By Pastor Mark Hopper   I enjoy playing golf.  It requires skill, luck, and perseverance.  Many life lessons are found in golf:   how to overcome adversity; how to build character; how to help and encourage your fellow players. Another nice thing about golf is that you can play the game throughout your life.  I enjoy […]

The Clock On The Kitchen Wall

By Mark Hopper We have clocks all over our house.  There are clocks in the bedrooms and in the living room.  There are also digital displays that show the time on our cable box and kitchen applicances.  Everyone who has a smart phone not only has a clock but also a calendar! In our house, […]

A Beautiful Drive

By Pastor Mark Hopper The recent rains in Southern California have promoted a lot of interesting conversations.  People who enjoy winter sports have loved the record amount of snow fall.  Recently, I heard someone say that ski resorts may remain open until the 4th of July! The rains have produced lush green hillsides in our […]

A Rabbit or A Rat?

By Pastor Mark Hopper Our grandchildren love to have a Tea party at Grammie’s house.  They have a special set of Tea cups that depict the story of Peter Rabbit.  These young grandkids know the story by heart but they love to hear it again and again. The story of Peter Rabbit is probably familiar to […]

Meet Me at In N Out

By Mark Hopper One of my favorite lunch spots is In N Out Burger.  The prices are right and the food is great.  I love their burgers, fries and chocolate shakes too! Recently I arranged to meet a guy for lunch to discuss a project he was working on.  He works down in Orange County […]

A Pink Donut

By Mark Hopper Recently our granddaughter had a sleep over at our house.  We were glad she could come. This cute three year old arrived at our house confidently pulling her small carry-on size suitcase.  She was excited to come to Grammy’s and Pop Pop’s house. She enjoyed playing with some toys, some dolls and the small wooden train […]

Autumn Leaves

By Mark Hopper My wife and I have dreamed for many years of going to New England to see the autumn colors.  This year we finally did it! We flew into Boston and drove to a small town in southern Vermont.   We stayed at a cozy Bed & Breakfast hosted by a delightful couple. The next morning, we […]

Turn On Your Headlights

By Mark Hopper I have noticed that more and more cars are on the road with their headlights off.  This is especially dangerous in the early evening and as it gets dark outside. I saw another car this evening driving dangerously with its headlights off and the driver seemed totally unaware. Apparently, newer cars have a […]

What Rain?

By Mark Hopper Recently my wife and I drove to Arizona to visit some of her family and connect with old some friends.  The skies were clear and the weather was not as hot as we expected. The day after we arrived, the weather forecaster predicted a 10% chance of rain.  Apparently there was a small […]

The Worms Are Back

Mark Hopper This has been a long, hot summer.  Recently, we have enjoyed cooler weather in Southern California, but the hot summer weather took a toll on my vegetable garden. The tomato plants produced very few tomatoes during the hot summer months.  But, now the plants look better and there are more blossoms again.  I hope we are in for […]