Archive for June 2013

Monday through Sunday

June 30, 2013

 No, we have not adopted some new, secular arrangement of the day of a week – like some modern calendars. We are simply picking up where we last left off in our blog entries. Monday evening, June 24, Betty Choate, Jerry and Paula Bates, Emmitt Channell, Rebecca Rushmore, and Bonnie and I ate together at our local Mexican restaurant. Brother Channell is a longtime Gospel preacher who was native to this part of Mississippi but who has preached in a number of places over the years, most notably in Pennsylvania. Bonnie and I have been acquainted with brother Emmitt for many years; it was a pleasure to have opportunity to enjoy his company even if only for a little while. He also brought a get well card from the Coventry Hills Church of Christ in Pottstown, PA where at different times brother Channel and I labored as ministers.

Get Well CardsOne day the same week, a passel of cards arrived from the Central Church of Christ in Cleveland, TN. Bonnie has been receiving get well cards daily from the time she was in the hospital last (April 4) through the present. We have not counted them, but the number of them represents ongoing encouragement by brethren as my dear wife battles pancreatic cancer.

This week continued to be a busy one as we have brought near to fruition the behind the scenes preparation for publication of Global Harvest, The Voice of Truth International, Gospel Gazette Online ( and over a dozen new tracts. At the office, at the house and in the cancer clinic Bonnie and I have laid out and proofed literature until we are loathe almost looking at any such text for a while. I published Gospel Gazette Online to the Internet this week, too – even before July arrived! A DVD of The Voice of Truth International layout is making its way to India for translation and publication there, too.

Sunnybrook Children's Home VisitorsWednesday, brethren Eric Dawkins and Moses Kendrick from Sunnybrook Children’s Home came to visit us in Winona. We provided literature for use by children as well as by residents at Sunnybrook’s retirement home, too. In addition, we helped brother Dawkins with literature for a small, struggling congregation with which he is laboring. Of course, we had a meal together – sandwiches and chips – at the World Evangelism Building.

Thursday, I had a doctor’s appointment in a series of doctor’s appointments. The good news was that tests largely determined that some of the minor, physical inconveniences I am experiencing are not attributable to cancer. However, one more precautionary test remains, but personnel inadvertently disposed of my specimen intended for that test; it will be a month before I can revisit the doctor’s office as I navigate through my calendar and the doctor’s next scheduled visit to the town north of Winona (where I see him usually).

Friday was consumed by our weekly trip to Jackson, MS for Bonnie’s chemotherapy. Bonnie’s good news is that her blood counts have remained steady in spite of chemo, and so chemotherapy continues per usual without modification at this time. Bonnie is able to keep a pretty full schedule, only overshadowed by an earlier onset of fatigue than before.

Saturday, I finally got around to fixing the carpenter/plumber’s installation of the pedestal sink and toilet in our main bathroom. Through some snafus in planning and application, he put an extra trap essentially in the drainpipe from the sink bowl to the floor so he could get the drain to match up with the hole he cut in the floor. Consequently, that sink hasn’t drained correctly since he put it in a couple of years ago. I had to remove the sink pedestal and bowl, disassemble the pipes, buy some additional pipe and fittings and reassemble everything. Well, that’s why I hadn’t gotten to it any sooner, especially since I rarely use that sink, and therefore, it was not an issue with me personally.

Furthermore, I finally got around to fixing the rocking toilet. Again, it was not a big issue with me since I seldom used that bathroom. However, guests and my daughter who has spent much time with us over the last few months (helping us with Bonnie’s medical issues) reminded me of these problem areas. Alas, running twice to the local hardware store before it closed at noon, I’m done with those two projects. Previously, I had to fix grout/caulk errors in that bathroom following the workman’s efforts, as well as attempt to remove ceramic tile adhesive from the carpet in the hallway. To my amazement, he is amazed that I haven’t contracted him again for other repairs!

Saturday evening, we three were guests for supper of Mike and Bonnie Schmitz; also present were Angie and Kevin Kimble. Brother Mike preaches for the Old Union Church of Christ in Carroll County, MS. The Kimbles are very active members with that congregation.

Sunday, I had no speaking appointment scheduled. Therefore, Bonnie proposed that we drive the two hours down to the Siwell Rd. Church of Christ for worship. Besides being our sponsoring congregation, brethren there have sent many of the cards that Bonnie has received. We had not been to the congregation since Bonnie’s surgery and commencement of chemo, and she wanted to visit brethren who have been so supportive in prayers and encouragement to her.

The week ahead, we will finish the preparation of our next Rushmore Newsletter and send it to the printing company. We have a little left to do on the next issue of The Voice of Truth International before we send the files to another printing company. The fourth of July occurs in the middle of the week, followed the next day by Rebecca’s birthday. Saturday, she departs for Guyana, South America – carrying some materials and funds to our dear brother Nigel Milo; he is distributing 50 Strong’s Concordances to preachers in that country for us. Of course, there is a chemo treatment for Bonnie on Friday. The following week is our annual World Evangelism Team Meeting in Winona. The 14th Bonnie and I celebrate 40 years of marriage and depart for a week to Colorado in connection with recognition of that. We are not likely to be bored, but rather happy to be busy, most of the time in the service of our Lord.

Week in Review

June 25, 2013

Steadily, Bonnie and I as well as our coworkers in Winona, MS have worked last week on various publications. All of us have worked on several new tracts soon to be sent to the printing company in Hong Kong. All of us have worked on the next issue of The Voice of Truth International and Global Harvest magazines (the former is printed in South Carolina, and the latter is printed in Hong Kong, too). Bonnie and my daughter Rebecca have worked in addition on the July issue of Gospel Gazette Online; it is now ready to be officially published to the Internet. We feel nearly blinded from typing, formatting and proofing hundreds of pages of literature! It is a wearisome project to produce teaching material in whatever form it ultimately takes.

Old Union CoC

Of Course, we had to eat a little, too!

Besides the forgoing, one or another of the Winona team of which we are a part receive, package and mail out book and tract requests daily. Bonnie and I attended Wednesday evening Bible class at the West President St. Church of Christ in Greenwood, MS, but on Thursday night, we participated in special men’s and women’s classes hosted by the Old Union Church of Christ deep in the woods and traversed by dirt roads outside of Carrollton, MS. The ladies are using Bonnie’s book Living Principles.

96 dpi 3X5 Bonnie2This was Bonnie’s off week for chemotherapy. As she would say, the side effects are minimal, though they are often inconvenient and sometimes unpredictable. She is a trooper! Bonnie hasn’t lost any of her hair and may not with the particular regimen in her treatment, but she is supposed to be mindful of the sun, including donning the loathsome hat (she doesn’t like hats).

Saturday, Bonnie and I traveled to the home of Bob and Peggy Rogers outside of Piedmont, AL; they are always gracious hosts and friends to us. Their large family farm is in high gear right now, and all of the extended family members locally and hired help, too, work from predawn to dark. In one particular field, the combine harvesting the wheat was followed by a tractor and a rake, which was followed by another tractor lugging a baler to bale the straw, which was followed by other equipment to snatch the straw bales from the field. Back at the farm garage, the youngest Rogers were greasing and pressure washing equipment. Never really done, upon leaving the field there was the task of moving house-sized equipment along roads and streets to additional fields as well as unloading tractor-trailers of grain.

The whole family, though, paused along with the rest of the local family of God to worship on the Lord’s Day at the Highway 9 Church of Christ. I made my PowerPoint presentation about our 2012-2013 mission work during Bible class time and preached “Why Do the Churches of Christ Not Use Instrumental Music in Worship?” during worship. After lunch at the local Mexican restaurant, courtesy of one of the elders and his family, Bonnie and I headed for our evening appointment with the Austinville Church of Christ in Decatur, AL.

Austinville Church of Christ

Austinville Church of Christ, Decatur, AL

We arrived two hours early but happened on brethren at the building who opened it up for us. Bonnie and I set up some copies of Global Harvest, Rushmore Newsletters, tracts, pens, etc. for the members to take home with them. In sufficient time before commencement of worship, the brother and his son arrived to help me set up for my PowerPoint presentation. Afterwards, the deacon of missions treated Bonnie and me along with his family to supper at Subway.

Bonnie and I had good intentions of driving the remaining four hours back to Winona, MS, but we reserved the option of stopping for the night if we became too tired. Hence, we lodged for the night at the least expensive motel we could find – excluding the flophouses that have proved unsatisfactory too many times previously, and we bedded down for the night around 10:30 p.m. in Tupelo, MS.

In the morning, we dilly-dallied too long to eat the continental breakfast, and so not disappointed at all, we had brunch of pecan pancakes, bacon, hash browns and juice at Cracker Barrel; we shared a meal as often we do, and still it was more than we could eat.

Since we were in Tupelo, we shopped at Sam’s club for groceries, putting perishables in a freezer bag. We got a little more fuel and opted for the carwash also to knock off some of the road dirt and bugs from our Gospel chariot.

Later in the day, we arrived back in Winona, not too much worse for the wear. This was Bonnie’s second weekend out with me for appointments since her surgery and commencement of chemotherapy. Chiefly, tiredness is a culprit we have to monitor, because it can lead to additional minor complications and inconveniences. I used to content myself with arriving back in Winona by midnight or a little later if necessary, but it is getting to the point where midnight driving is not good enough for me, and perhaps in sympathy with Bonnie, my tiredness necessitates consideration of finding a place to bed down a little earlier – like we did Sunday night.

For the Last Two Weeks

June 16, 2013
Butterfly Garden Singapore Airport

Bonnie & Louis Rushmore – 2010
Butterfly Garden Singapore Airport

For the last two weeks, Bonnie and I have been working on the unseen aspect of the labors involved in publishing Gospel literature. The July issue of Gospel Gazette Online is nearly ready for publishing – only lacking Bonnie’s article, which she is writing. Bonnie has been working devotedly on the next issue of The Voice of Truth International, and now that she has it to a certain point, I have started to work diligently on it as well. We have been proofing the upcoming edition of Global Harvest, too. In addition, we have proofed several new tracts that will be published in the near future, written by Betty Choate, Jerry Bates, Ron Williams and Louis Rushmore.

Besides these things, several tasks about the office occur daily – ranging from snail-mail, email, telephone calls and shipping packages to fulfill book and tract orders. At the house, we have been tasked with lawn work and digging trenches to carry off rainwater to prevent the knoll on which our residence rests from being washed over the embankments. My domestic duties have increased proportionately to Bonnie’s inability pertaining to her illness and treatment; she has bounced back significantly, and together we attend to these necessary, daily functions. In addition, our daughter has been coming to Winona frequently to care for both her mother and father. Only recently, has Bonnie resumed driving locally, and so for a recent procedure under which I went, Rebecca drove us as neither Bonnie nor I were capable of driving on that occasion.

Life is good, and eternity will be even better. We want to serve our Lord faithfully and enthusiastically throughout the balance of our lives. Thank you for your encouragement and support toward that end.

One Down Five to Go!

June 16, 2013
Rebecca, Louis & Bonnie Rushmore in Myanmar 2010

Rebecca, Louis & Bonnie Rushmore
In 2010 at a Yangon, Myanmar Hotel

I have completed one month (three infusions) of chemo, and fortunately the side effects have been minimal. I am at the office most of each day; however, I am refraining from working in the warehouse. The oncologist says to live my normal life and do what I feel I am up to do. So I am! I am travelling with Louis on the week-ends and working in the office during the week.

Everything I read about cancer encourages joining a support group for emotional support. I feel I do not need to join a support group as I already have one.

First, is my heavenly Father Who is with me every step of the way. I go to Him in prayer, and He answers through His Word. My prayer is that He will grant me many, many more years of service to Him.

Second, is my wonderful husband. He rarely left my side during my hospital stay, holds me close during my bouts of feeling sorry for myself, has willingly stepped up to doing laundry, fixing meals, cleaning and all the other household chores when I am unable to complete them. He encourages me to get lots of rest and not over exert myself now that I am able to resume most activities.

Third, is my daughter. She has spent most weekends with us in Winona since the first week of April when I had surgery, and now that school is out, she is here during part of the week as well. She stops to buy groceries, helps with the household chores, assists her father with the yard work since I cannot, helps unload trucks at the warehouse and assists with some of the office duties. She also gently rebukes me for “over doing it” when I try to do more than she and her father think I should. I get frustrated with them, but I know they mean well and are trying to take care of me. It is because of their love and concern for me that they caution me to rest and take it easy. They know that I will push on even when I sometimes need to slow down. I am trying to learn this, and I think am being careful, resting when necessary.

Last but not least, I have hundreds of Christians around the world praying for my recovery. We receive get well wishes and words of encouragement daily through the mail system, emails, text messages and phone calls from literally across the globe. I may not reply to all the correspondence we receive, but I do appreciate the notes of encouragement.

Thank you, thank you, thank you for your prayers and kind words!

Foray into Alabama

June 3, 2013
Tree Farm Road

Tree Farm Road

Saturday afternoon, June 1, Bonnie and I left Winona, MS and traveled toward our Sunday appointments. We stopped at OH! Bryan’s Family Steak House, where we have dined over the years when in the vicinity or just passing through. Bonnie and I shared a steak, fries and hush puppies, besides having a salad apiece. I was surprised at Bonnie’s appetite, not that either of us ate a lot, but that she heartily ate following the surgery and chemotherapy she had the day before, especially given that she was nauseated after eating the night before. Well, almost immediately after eating, Bonnie’s nausea returned, but fortunately we were less than 10 miles from where we were going to spend the night (the Key West Motel). Lying down in the room for a while, she recovered. We opted to take a motel instead of staying with a family in Bear Creek, AL to not trouble the family and afford Bonnie as much latitude as possible for her rest and possible side effects from chemo. It was a good choice. The motel also allowed us the options of leaving Bonnie at the motel Sunday morning if she were feeling too poorly to continue to the appointment with me, in which case we would have returned to Winona on Monday.

Secret Fish Pond

Secret Fish Pond

Sunday morning, we completed our journey to the Bear Creek Church of Christ, with a slight detour owing to miscommunication between the GPS and me when setting the route. For Bible class, I made my PowerPoint presentation “2012-2013 Mission Trips”; for worship, I preached “Why Do the Churches of Christ Not Use Instrumental Music in Worship?” Afterward, we ate at the home of sister Helen and brother Royce Mann, as we do annually. Like I do every year, too, after we ate, brother Royce and I made the rounds on his tree farm, feeding the deer, squirrels, chipmunks, birds and fish.

Late Sunday afternoon, we parted from the Manns and pointed the van toward the meetinghouse for the Barn Creek Church of Christ. That evening, I presented the PowerPoint “2012-2013 Mission Trips.” Both of the congregations visited that day have had a long association with J.C. and Betty Choate in World Evangelism, but since the death of brother J.C., Bonnie and I have been visiting these churches on behalf of the overall work. The Bear Creek Church of Christ participates financially with Bonnie and me in our mission work, too.

Sunday evening, Bonnie and I opted to make the nearly three-hour trip (not counting stops) back to Winona. We paused for a light supper at Jack’s in Guin, AL; we shared a combo. Bonnie slept off and on as we traveled, which is not unusual even before her current illness and treatment. I nearly ran the car out of gas trying to get to Murphy gas at Wal-Mart in Columbus, MS; I had less than two gallons of gas left. A little weary, we arrived back in Winona, MS just before 10:30 p.m. and managed to get into bed for the night before 11:00 p.m.

Monday morning, Bonnie is not any worse for the wear due to the weekend travel. I am happy to have her along with me, and she prefers to come instead of being left behind. We both awoke well rested. However, one of the less glamorous side effects from her chemotherapy dampened Bonnie’s morning a little. She is resting – sleeping in the recliner.

Bonnie’s oncologist advised us to live our lives as normally as possible, and we intend to do just that. As long as we are alive and can function, we expect to be about serving our Lord Jesus Christ. We are not done yet!