Don’t Laugh

By Mark Hopper   Recently we had a clean up day to get ready for our church’s 50th birthday party.  There was one specific area on our property that really needed some sprucing up. The ground cover was thinning out and we agreed to order some new mulch and bark to make it look better.The area that we […]

A People, Not a Steeple

By Mark Hopper   I have shared in my last few articles that our church’s 50th birthday party is coming up on Saturday, October 21st.  I was asked to look through some old photos and put together a short visual history of our church. I enjoyed my assignment and spent several hours looking through many photos that went […]

A Special Birthday- Part 2

By Mark Hopper   The idea of starting a new church in Diamond Bar was the dream of a man named Wally Norling. He was the District Superintendent of the Evangelical Free Church in Southern California.  He loved to plant new churches in new communities that were popping up all over Southern California 50 years ago. Wally personally approached […]

The Solar Eclipse: Part 1

By Mark Hopper   I shared in a previous article that my wife and I were on our way to see the Solar Eclipse.  We sensed the excitement and anticipation as we waited at airports for our flight.  There was a “buzz” in the air. We flew to Des Moines, Iowa, and spent two days […]

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 Can Of Paint

By Mark Hopper   I have discovered that after Spring cleaning comes Summer painting!  We recently hired some people to remodel our bathrooms.  The look great.  New fixtures, new tile and new paint!  It is amazing how nice they look. However, when you get new paint in one room, you notice how old the paint […]

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 […]

Hayden & Rhodes

By Pastor Mark Hopper   For decades states along the Colorado River like California, Arizona, Utah, Nevada and Colorado had fought in court over how much water each of them should receive from the the river.  In the 1960’s the United States Supreme Court determined that Arizona was entitled to a specific amount of water […]

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 […]

A Bird In The Hand

By Mark Hopper   There is a familiar saying that says, “A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush”.  Basically it means that it is better to hold on to something you already have than to risk losing it by trying to get something more. I have come up with a better […]

Memorial Day

By Pastor Mark  Hopper My wife and I visited Arlington Cemetery with our children many years ago.  It is a vast area outside of Washington, D.C., where thousands of military veterans are buried.   It is one of the best known cemeteries in our country.  Both Privates and Presidents are buried there. Our family has also visited the military cemetery in Gettysburg, […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

More Rain

By Mark Hopper  You may have noticed that it has been raining a lot this winter.   My wife and I have lived in southern California for almost 30 years and we don’t remember many years like this one. Every time I wash the car, it rains again.  We have decided to not wash the windows […]

The Game of Golf

By Mark Hopper I started playing golf with my father-in-law after my wife and I got married.  He was a good golfer – I was not.  He patiently endured my struggles as I learned to play the game. Golf has a lot of rules and regulations.  One interesting thing about golf is that each player […]

Fresh Oranges

By Mark Hopper When we bought our house in Diamond Bar about 30 years ago, there was a scrawny (sp) little citrus tree in the back yard.The previous owner said that he had planted the tree but it had not produced much fruit.  He had given up on it and was thinking of pulling it out. But, I’m […]

Regular Maintenance

By Mark Hopper I try to make sure that our cars get regular service and maintenance.  I used to change the oil myself but now I take our cars to the dealer or service center for regular oil changes and check ups. Recently, I took one of our cars to the dealer where we purchased it.  When […]

Little Red Caboose

By Mark Hopper  Our grandchildren have learned a lot of songs from my wife.  She has a song for just about every occasion and the grand kids love them. One of those songs is about a little Red Caboose that is pulled along behind a train. This Christmas the grand kids got to see this […]