New Year, New Wife, New Life

96-dpi-wedding-cake-44Whew! What a whirlwind romance! Martha Lynn Noland and I raced from friendship to engagement—skipping right over DATING. On the 14th of December, I proposed, and she accepted! Within half an hour we had selected the date, place and time for our nuptials. Just 17 days later—on New Year’s Day—we plunged into wedded bliss at her Ocala, Florida home in her living room, in the presence of family and Christian friends.

96-dpi-4x6-kissingI practiced my “pucker power” on the way to Florida at the State Welcome Center by getting a little fresh with the dolphin ambassador. A few days later, the experience came in handy!

My daughter Rebecca and I drove from Winona, MS to Ocala with the van loaded with “freight” from my Mississippi home to our Florida home. On the return to Winona from Florida, Martha pushed about everything she could lay her hands upon out the door, and I dutifully packed it into every nook and cranny of the poor car. I’m not sure, but even the kitchen sink may have in that jumble.

My son Raymond and Martha’s sons and two of her daughters-in-law made their way down to Ocala. There were bodies lying everywhere from the beds to the floor with sleeping bags and air mattresses.

96-dpi-wedding-shotgun-51As a joke, we staged a “shotgun wedding.” To symbolize the blending of our two families, we interjected a sand ceremony into the wedding. We all had lots of fun.

96-dpi-wedding-sand-49Martha is exactly the cure that I desperately needed for my despondency—comforting me and giving me direction and purpose in my life. I offer the same to her, too. We both lost our spouses (i.e., Bonnie, Bob) to pancreatic cancer in 2015. Bob and Martha had been married for 48 years, whereas Bonnie and I had been married for 42 years. Bonnie and Martha were best friends, and the four of us were friends for more than 35 years. It seems that I have “inherited” Martha, and I am so fortunate for having done so.

96-dpi-wedding-13There is no time for a honeymoon in the near future as we are attending various preaching appointments in Arkansas and Tennessee prior to our departure from the USA on January 24 for Guyana, South America. We will return from the mission trip, Lord willing, on March 9. At that time, we will resume appointments in Arkansas, Kentucky and Florida. Incidentally, one of our 14 to 16 venues in jungle-bound Guyana is Monkey Mountain! Time spent there will be nearly akin to outdoor camping—without amenities commonly enjoyed stateside. There’s not much chance of Monkey Mountain folks reading my blog entry since no radio, TV or cell signals reach that remote location along the Brazilian border.

96-dpi-wedding-cake-53Martha Lynn RUSHMORE and I conscientiously purpose first to help each other make our way to heaven above. In the course of the doing that, we resolve to serve the Lord to the best of our abilities stateside and abroad as long as God permits us the strength and health to do so. Together, we expect to waddle throughout what future days may yet grace our lives, all the while comforting and upholding each other. We are truly blessed to have each other as companions and best friends as we trod the pilgrim pathway toward the heavenly horizon ahead of us. Along the way, we are having a BLAST in place of our former despair as we immerse ourselves in Christian service, made possible by prayers, moral support and generous gifts. Thank you!

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2 Comments on “New Year, New Wife, New Life”


  1. May your path be strewn with bliss throughout your journey to heaven in the service of our Lord.

  2. Geri Lemley Says:

    Just can’t express how happy I am for you knowing the emptiness when losing your lifetime mate


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