Is Monday the 13th Really Unlucky?

Happy unlucky Monday the thirteenth Y’all. I have no clue how Friday the 13th stole all the thunder from Monday the 13th, but that’s what we have to live with in this fallen world I suppose.

What makes this Monday the 13th unlucky to the uber degree is the fact that it’s the second month in a row we’ve had to endure one. If you don’t believe me just flip your calendar back a page a see for yourself.

You see…February had a Monday the 13th, too. Now you hurt my feelings by actually checking. Shame on you.

It’s a good thing I’m not actually superstitious or nothing because last month would have done me in to the uber degree.

I was working with the Apainter Paul on an interior job. The tall ceilings made it necessary to use ladders to paint the tops of the walls. No, I didn’t walk under any of said ladders at all if I could at all help it…not that I actually believe it’s unlucky or nothing.

The real problem came from the three cats the lady had for fur children. Yeah, she never got married so the cats are her kids…not that she considers herself a crazy cat lady or nothing. That’s what I overheard her tell someone on the phone.

Anywho…all three of these felines are black. She can tell them all apart. Good fur her.

Now I can’t think of an unluckier event than to have three black cats cross under a feller’s ladder on a Monday the 13th…but I lived to tell about it, y’all.

There are some folks who hope they’re lucky enough to get into heaven after they die. They think if they go to church enough times and give the appropriate amount of money to the right charitable organizations they’ll make it.

Not by the hair of their black cat’s chin.

They count on their good deeds being enough to earn their way through those pearly gates.

Not by attaching all the ladders together will that get them to reach heaven’s foundation.

They pray they’re better than just enough people to make the cut to be selected on God’s team.

Not by any number of anything will that work neither.

There’s nothing anybody can do to get to heaven. There is something one man did to get you into heaven, though.

Jesus Christ was a unique individual…actually He still is. It’s a stretch for our puny minds to comprehend, but Jesus was God and man in one package. His perfect life made him the ultimate one to become the ultimate sacrifice to die in our place in God’s eyes.

There’s nothing superstitious about this. By admitting your inability to reach heaven on your own efforts because of your sinning you have taken the important first step to getting there.

The second step is accepting Jesus’s death as done in your place.

The third step will be when you walk across that threshold of those pearly gates.

Your eternity with God won’t start when you get to heaven. No, He wants to develop that relationship you’ve always longed for right here and now.

Yeah, I’m not hawking a religion here. Christianity was always meant to be a personal relationship with the Creator of the universe.

Jesus always called God His Father. Once you become Jesus’s adopted brother or sister you can, too.

No amount of black critters, ladders nor numbers will ever take that away from you, neither.

This will all make perfect sense when we all get to heaven.

You can thank me when you see me there someday.

Keep smiling.   Wade

Who Really Believed that Overgrown Underground Rodent Anyway?

As I recall Phil said there was going to be six more weeks of winter on February 2nd. You know…that groundhog in Pennsylvania.

So why are we in the 70’s and 80’s here in Texas already? I’ve even seen where it’s in the 70’s back in Michigan…and it’s only the middle of the month.

I drove to Houston and San Antonio this week and can decisively report that the Redbuds (with their purple flowers) and the daffodils are blooming.

The redwing blackbirds are warming up their vocal chords for their mating songs.

We’re either entering an early spring or those folks who tell us what that fat rat says were totally off this time or we’re in for an extremely rude awaking some morning and some dead purple flowers on red trees.

As you can tell I’m totally confused, but that’s quite normal for me these days…or is it daze?

To add to my malady of mix-uppedness the president’s wife just read the Lord’s prayer in public. Can she do that?

Okay, I’m pretty sure she can since she actually did, but why does that seem un-normal?

Don’t get me wrong, I’m thrilled she did it. I just wish that simple act of reverence to God wasn’t out of the ordinary.

Either The Donald has been completely transformed by the precious blood of Jesus Christ that he’s a new man from who he used to be, which is so like Jesus to do that to a fella, or he’s bamboozling everybody for a rude awakening some morning.

I’m believing the first case is correct.

The liberal leaning media folks don’t know what to make of such a transformed individual or his wife. But that’s okay. Let them squirm for a while while God sets things back to His track of biblical responsibility.

As I recall Jesus’s disciples were more than a bit confused more than once in their time with Him.

Their most confusing time came after Jesus died on the cross.

All of their predetermined dreams of a kingdom ruled by the Messiah were shattered. The bitter taste of death lingered that whole Sabbath…until Sunday morning broke with the most unprecedented news anybody will ever hear.

The tomb was empty.

Jesus was not there.

Did they dare remember Him telling them He would come back to life?

They sat in their shock and wonderment and confusion…until the room brightened and the smell of burial spices filled their noses.

The war for the souls of mankind took a decisive turn that day. The Savior had accomplished His task.

His death was the sacrifice God demanded of us all.

The war goes on. That’s why the Lord’s Prayer is still causing an uproar when the first lady reads it in public.

The Messiah will reign on the throne. But more people must be touched by the news of Jesus’s sacrifice.

Rodents don’t determine the future. God does.

The media can’t control how often we tell someone about Jesus. We can.

This war is far from over, my fellow soldiers.

Let’s not let up on our efforts just because the leader of this country is a Christian.

Large scale victories don’t need to be won. Win souls one at a time.

Keep marching on our knees to the battle.

Don’t worry. I’ve read the end of the Book.

Our side wins.

Keep smiling.   Wade

I’m More Valuable Than a Bird or Flower

I’ve been shang-hide lately for toddler duty by the fine staff in the early childhood department of Stonebriar Community Church.

I don’t really mind it too much. I mean what’s a toddler whisperer going to say when asked to watch tots so their parents can worship in big church?

This all started on the first Sunday of the year, which was also January first.

They purchased new tee shirts for the department. Shannon insisted I take one…for the summer months, she said. It was in the 70’s today, but that ain’t summer in Texas.

I told Shannon I felt like I was being drafted into the duty. Now I know I should have a jersey with a big number on it and print my name in the program they hand out to the parents.

There’s only been one Sunday I wasn’t with the kids so far this year.

Mateo really needs Mr. Wade to give him attention when he first arrives. He typically settles down in a couple of minutes.

Isabella got tired again, but she didn’t nod off into a nap as she often does.

Emma and Kate, the twins, settled in pretty quickly, too. Even though some of the other adults wanted to set them on the buggy. After Mr. Wade assured them they’d be fine we were all happy.

Today’s Bible lesson covered the portion of the Sermon on the Mount where Jesus talks about worrying, Matthew 6:25-34.

He goes on to say the birds don’t have 401K accounts, yet they survive just fine. The flowers don’t shop at the best stores in the mall, but they’re prettier than anybody.

Don’t worry. That’s my paraphrase, not something the church adheres to.

I think about those verses often whenever I run in Archgate Park. Last October we had a fantastic migration of Monarch butterflies moving through.

There’s some native growing plants that were loaded with flowers at the time. Those bugs tanked up on the nectar so they could continue on their trek to Mexico.

One week later the plants that were blooming for the bugs had gone to seed. Not to worry, though. God had the plants that were still green the previous week in full bloom.

That was extremely handy since there were at least three times as many butterflies at the park.

I just smiled and thanked God for proving His faithfulness yet again.

God has had me on a manna diet for quite a while now. The driving jobs that were plentiful around Christmas are drying up. My bank accounts are low, but I’m not worried. Jesus says He’s got me covered.

How about you? Are you sweating the details of your life?

Don’t think you can’t make changes to help your situation out. I’m planning on implementing some business tactics that I hope will get me out from behind the wheel of an eighteen wheeler soon.

When the publisher I was using to print my books closed their doors I didn’t fret then either. I was frustrated, but I know God’s timing isn’t for those books to come out now.

An interesting thing just happened at the Super Bowl. The team that won was only in the lead at the end of the game.

Don’t give up, my friend. If you’re still walking the face of this earth God has a plan for you.

He’ll provide what you need in His time. And it will be glorious, just like the flowers and birds.

Keep smiling.   Wade

The Donald and the Constitution

I’m taking a chance and diving into the political arena with this post. Humor will hopefully get folks to breathe a bit as they watch the video I recorded here.

I pray the message of chilling comes through as much as the call for action to protect those without a voice.

I’ve held my tongue long enough. In order to have a clear conscience I’ve spoken my heart here. This probably won’t make a difference, but it’s the platform I have so I’m doing what I can for the glory of God.

I’ll see you later.   Wade

How Did You Ring in the New Year?

Okay. A show of hands, who watched the ball drop on New Years’ Eve? If you’re in Idaho did you watch the potato drop? They actually do that there. The country bumpkin in me believes it.

Full confession…I didn’t even consider it this time around. I witnessed too many midnights in 2016 to stay up for yet another one.

I did see the first one of 2016 thanks to some friends who asked me to help keep some millennials in line with them on that eve of 2016. They were all Christians so it was actually a piece of cake. Not that we actually had any cake…never mind.

I had to work on December 31st. I drove back from Amarillo after delivering some windows in the morning.

The sun had set before I got to Ft Worth. Clifford, the big red van, was the only one at the window factory waiting for me. The building sets on a hill overlooking the south end of Ft Worth.

Shortly after I parked my phone dinged. That meant I had a Facebook message sent to me. Ruth wished me a Happy New Year. I smiled and thanked her.

You see Ruth lives in Uganda. Since it was officially 2017 there that meant I actually celebrated the new year, even though it was just after seven o’clock on my watch.

While I was filling out my log book I heard a crackling sound. I looked up to watch a thirty second fireworks display. Now I DID feel like I celebrated in style.

Since I still had over an hour to drive home I sent up an earnest prayer for safety on that leg of my journey. Fortunately that prayer was answered in the affirmative.

I have no idea what the next twelve months hold for me. I may be rich and famous when the next December 31st rolls around.

I may be famous but not rich, or rich but still a nobody, or just Wade who still has to drive through the night just to pay my bills on time.

I do hope I have a closer walk with Father God by then. That will mean I’ll be more like Jesus Christ, His Son.

I pray I inspire more people to strive for the same goal in some way.

I know that will mean more tests in the days ahead, but they’ll come anyway. Might as well make the best use of them to further God’s kingdom.

Each day will hold its own troubles. Drivers will still take stupid chances on the roads I drive. I’ll struggle to keep my eyes open occasionally on those same roads.

I wonder what I’ll be inspired to write this year. I’m working on songs now. Caught me by surprise, too.

My writing may win some awards. That’s not why I write, but it helps get my stuff noticed more.

If the first week of this year is any indication I’ll have to come up with a better sleep system to keep up with my work demands. Yeah, I’m very tired.

I’ll still pray for others and ask for prayer from others. That’s what spiritual siblings are for. Right?

I’ll keep pursuing Barb and ask God for wisdom, patience and guidance on that front.

I’ve watched enough races to know that it’s not important how you start the race that matters most, it’s how well you finish it that decides the outcome.

Don’t fret if you couldn’t stay awake to see one year end and the next one begin. That will happen with or without you.

Make the most of every moment and decision in your life.

God has a plan for you. Follow that plan.

How do you know how to best do that?

Spend quality time in the Bible, God’s guidebook for people.

Invest quality time with God’s people, your spiritual siblings.

Devote quality time in deep prayer, your link to God’s ear.

Resolve to do those three things and you’ll be more like Jesus Christ when the next December 31st rolls around.

Keep smiling.   Wade

Do I See What You See?

I’ve been doing a lot of traveling lately. I’m been all over Texas…from Houston to San Antonio to El Paso to Amarillo to Wichita Falls and all over the Dallas area this month. Outside of Texas I’ve been to Oklahoma City, OK, Memphis, TN, and Shreveport, LA multiple times.

When a truck driver does that type of delivering there are two options for sleeping away from home. You either konk out in the back of the truck if it has a bed or you luck out and the company pays for a motel room.

I’ve been fortunate enough to fall in the second camp of camping in a well-equipped, climate-controlled setting.

The last motel room I was in had an interesting phenomenon in it. Each wall had the same picture on it whether I wanted to look at it or not.

It’s not that I was unfamiliar to this picture. I see it often, whether I want to or not.

I think one of the reasons the picture was tiring was because it looked tired, at least the subject matter did.

The glossy surface of the portrait made me a bit suspicious as to the motive of the motel personnel who decided on this motif.

I guess they didn’t want anyone leaving their establishment with the excuse that they didn’t know they had something stuck between their teeth.

Yeah, I was getting paranoid from all of the mirrors on every wall I looked at.

I understand the one in the bathroom over the sink. I fully expect one there. But do I need to look at my reflection while I’m working on something at the desk? And I absolutely don’t appreciate seeing myself sitting on the toilet when I close that door. Let’s get real here.

It got me to thinking about how often folks don’t really want to look at who they really are.

I’m not talking about their outward appearance. Anybody can change that easily enough.

I’m thinking about soul searching deep inside. How often do people do that investigation?

When did you last perform such introspection?

While driving these long distances I’ve had a lot of time to think about many things. Prayers frequently follow my thoughts whether it’s about me or someone else on my mind.

James 1:19-27 is a section of scripture that holds a lot of insight in it. Central to James’s theme is this thought of looking intently into a mirror and deciding what to do about what you see, if anything.

I pity people who don’t change after they’re shown something in the Bible about how we’re supposed to live.

I’ve never been a big fan of new year’s resolutions. I prefer to make changes as soon as I’m made aware of them.

The problem with most folks is they’re too caught up with living to actually live.

Their lives are too busy to step back to analyse anything for long.

Make the most of your reflection time. If you haven’t had any lately then set some time aside soon.

The new year is right around the corner. Now would be a great time to decide what you want to change so your life pleases God the Father.

All those mirrors in my room apparently did little to improve my appearance that day. The last thing the guy behind the check out desk did was point out where they had some coffee I could drink before I hit the road.

When you’re suffering through a cold good sleep can be so elusive. Don’t let God’s design for your life elude you as you decide what changes you need to make.

Keep smiling.   Wade

Normal for me is spelled Frustrating Chaos

For anybody who missed me, or this blog post anywho, this past Monday I have an extremely good reason for being AWOL. My computer/internet router/modem gave up the ghost at an extremely awkward moment.

Let’s back up to last Thursday evening. I received an email from The Upper Room devotional folks about one of the submissions I sent to them about a month ago. They said it needed a better takeaway for them to publish it and pay me $30 for it.

Thursday evening I finally had some free time from driving all over Texas that week for work. I had an idea for yet another devotional I thought they might like so I wrote that one out and submitted it via their online form.

Then I went back and wrote three sentences to close out that other devo they were interested in. About half way through that process the electricity went out in my apartment building. At least I think it went out in the whole building.

My apartment was dark but the other buildings I can see from my windows were still lit up. The battery on my computer kept me in business so I kept completing the form while I anticipated the juice would flow yet again to my home base.

The good news is my lights came back on about a half hour after they went out. The bad news is my router never regained consciousness. That meant I was without internet access to send that devo to the nice folks in the upper room. No not the room over my apartment. I could have walked it up there.

No problem, I thinks, I’m scheduled to drive to El Paso tomorrow. I’ll simply take my computer and send it from my motel room.

I made sure I asked if there was a password to access the internet before I left the front desk.

“Nope. Just click on our logo.” The kindly fellow stated assuredly. He obviously had no clue who he was speaking to. Bank computers shut off when I walk near them to get change made.

Sure enough, I tried everything I could think of to get that useless internet thingy to work on my computer to no avail. So I called the front desk and explained my dilemma.

Next thing I know I’m talking to some geek in their technical support department. 46 minutes later I discover I have too many IP numbers within my computer to be of much help to a nice enough geek.

He promises me that if I wait 5-10 minutes I’ll be able to hook up to the internet. Finally something went right for me. I was back in the 21st century and sent my devo submission back to TUR (The Upper Room).

By then I was more than ready to become unconscious myself. So I did just that after a shower that worked just fine for me.

I think somebody must really need the message from that devo about being used by God no matter what your background is. A few days later they sent me an email that said they like it and will let me know when they’ll use it. Perhaps if they read my blog they’ll know what I went through with it and post it post-haste.

In the meantime I found a phone number for the internet company I pay my bills to. I found myself back in El Paso Monday afternoon explaining my dilemma to them.

Their first question to me was, “Is the switch turned on?”

I only thought about throwing my phone across the motel room. I assured them I turned it off and on several times from different outlets with the same dark results.

They eventually agreed to ship me a new router to replace my dead one I used for over eight years.

Fast forward to this week Thursday (yesterday). I’m actually eating supper in my apartment for a very rare instance. I hear some rustling near my front door that included what could have been one knock, then silence.

I heard someone walk up the stairs to that upper room so I peeked out my peep hole. A shadowy figure raced by toward the front of the building followed by the unmistakable sound of a diesel engine starting up and racing away.

I opened my door to find a box there that hadn’t been there before. I was barely home a few minutes so I knew it wasn’t there very long. I can deduce some things fairly quickly after I’ve eaten half of my supper.

My brand spanking new router made it home while I was actually there. Which was good since I don’t know how long it would have stayed there all by itself.

After I finished my meal I decided to see if I could set it up all by my lonesome without calling some geek somewhere.

Two passwords and about a half dozen failed attempts later I tracked down a phone number that came with the packaging.

I don’t know what possessed me but I decided to try one last time to connect to the internet by the only means I thought possible. It must have been the Holy Spirit within me because the computer actually worked like it is designed to function. Glory Hallelujah!!!

Now to take advantage of an extremely rare Friday off to catch up on some computer related items before I drive again on Saturday.

Now I’m wondering what the chances are that my Christmas books will actually get printed and shipped to me before Christmas. That’s probably too many miracles to expect for one Christmas season.

At least I know God is still in control. Whether I’m home to see it or not.

I’ll see you later.   Wade

That Circadian guy was sure on to something

Have you ever heard of the Circadian Rhythm?

No, not Cicada rhythms. That would be that incessant high-pitched buzzing sound we hear all summer long. I think I still have its echo ringing in my ears now.

And no, it has absolutely nothing to do with music, unless you consider lullabies a part of it.

I have no idea if it gets its name from someone named Circadia or if it originated somewhere near a place called Circadia but I know it exists because I’m affected by it big-time right now.

Your Circadian Rhythm is that timeframe you tend to sleep in everyday.

Some folks prefer to sleep during the day and be awake at night. There are a lot of employers in search of such individuals.

Most of us would rather sleep at night so we can remain conscious during daylight hours. That’s the camp I fall into. At least I try to.

For some unexplained reason God has me swinging all over the clock in search of sleep versus work times.

In October I was so exhausted I could fall asleep any time I closed my eyes for more than a minute.

The first two weeks in November I was given a reprieve of working during the day and sleeping at night similar to normal individuals. Some days I’d prefer to be normal for a change.

Last week saw a return to driving mostly at night and attempting to sleep during the day. Even with my bedroom darkened to near pitch black I couldn’t fool my internal sleep mechanism to turn off during the time the sun was shining. I hate when that happens.

I have to take ten hours off according to our federal government mandates after close to fourteen hours of a driving day. My employer was kind enough to pay for a motel room for me on the far side of Arkansas Saturday afternoon.

I was unconscious for a total of about four hours before my infernal internal Circadian Rhythm kicked me into awake gear for the remainder of my down time. I despise when that happens.

Surprisingly I was quite awake for all but the final hundred miles of my return trip. A combination of chocolate covered peanuts and a high-caffeinated carbonated beverage sufficed me alive and awake.

There was no time for any sort of nap before I was off to church to spend precious time with my spiritual family members there.

Oh yeah, my head nodded more than once while I occupied a seat in God’s house. I’m pretty sure He noticed. Glad I’m His favorite child.

I pointed out to Him I was simply following the example Jesus set for me.

Yeah, you do too remember. It’s that time He fell asleep in the front of a boat during a storm. He nodded off so strongly even the waves crashing over the bow of that vessel didn’t wake Him up.

It’s because of that I’m convince Jesus would have made the perfect team semi driver. I’ve refused those runs since I know I wouldn’t be able to sleep with my bed bouncing down the road. Perfectly calm and cozy seems to be my challenge lately.

Jesus never did have trouble sleeping. He even made it a habit of waking up before everyone else just so He could have quality time with His Abba God.

It’s not that I don’t think God has everything under control that keeps me awake (I didn’t even stay awake to see the election results).

I just ain’t got no rhythm. That’s all.

Is there some way I can sue that Circadian fella?

Keep smiling.   Wade

Be Extraordinary Consider the Ant

Have you taken the time to consider ants like Solomon tells us to in the book of Proverbs?

The ants in my neighborhood have gotten my attention lately by their weird behavior.

By thinking about how they’ve decided to be extraordinary I’ve chosen to follow their lead and be extraordinary, too.

Watch my video to see exactly what I’m talking about.

Don’t be afraid to be like my ant friends. Don’t be ordinary and “normal” any more than you have to be.

Keep smiling.   Wade

The 2016 Stonebriar Men’s Retreat is in the Books as Another Winner

I just returned home from this years’ men’s retreat put on by my church. Okay, it’s not strictly my church or it wouldn’t be much of a retreat. Can one person really enjoy teaching himself new things from the Bible?

Stonebriar Community Church is the organization I chose to be included in their membership. Therefore, it’s my church and a whole bunch of like-minded individuals.

Now that we have that cleared up do you mind if I continue to tell you about my experience in east Texas?

I guess it’s too obvious I just spent the past few days around guys who had no women folk telling us what we had to do.

That’s just one of the reasons some of us look forward to this annual event. The clean air and slower pace is another perk.

The food was excellent, as usual. I guess the folks at Pine Cove know if you feed us well we’ll come back.

I made sure I thanked some of the people who volunteered their weekend to work in the kitchen for us.  They said our group is the best one in showing our gratitude in that way. Now you know why I’m so proud to be included among these fine gentlemen.

I informed the set up team this may be Clifford’s, the big red van, last retreat before we left Frisco. I have a suspicion I’ll have to keep patching him up rather than replace him anytime soon. He may be back, too.

Going out a day early does come with a few advantages. For one thing we don’t take ourselves too seriously. Yeah, that means we laugh a lot.

On Thursday afternoon we went into Tyler for snack supplies. After that was loaded it had been decided we’d eat at a Tex-Mex restaurant. Somebody brought up the GPS directions on their phone and discovered it would take us ten minutes to get there from where we were.

So Les pulled over and had them use their phone to see if there was something closer to us. Five minutes later the wheels on the van were going round and round again to the original eating choice. Yeah, sometimes it feels like I’m back with the toddlers on Sunday morning in the summer not grown adult men.

Anyway, the curmudgeon in me reared his snarly head and I said. “You realize we could have been half way there by now if we hadn’t stopped to find something closer.”

They laughed so I quickly pointed out that I didn’t have as much in reserve as they did. In other words I was hungry.

When the conversation later turned to how many extra calories we always eat on this weekend I told them that’s why I don’t eat anything the rest of the year, so I can fit these God-honoring calories in without guilt.

For the record I was the only one of us who fit into a medium tee shirt. And it even bagged on me a bit.

My testosterone levels must have jumped up a bit because when I got home I did my typical exercises before I go for a run. I usually pump out 40 full push ups. This time I did 50. Maybe I needed those extra calories more than I wanted to admit to.

I went for my annual walk in nature Saturday afternoon after a nap that was much briefer than I thought it would be. I realized I felt much different than I have in past years. I’m often tired from either being wound up from life events or wound down by life events.

For some reason I felt content and at peace even though life events have me too frequently working all day then driving through the night before I repeat without either lathering or rinsing. Sorry, it’s a guy thing that carried over from the weekend.

Staying true to who I am I found a plastic shopping bag in the woods and filled it with trash on my walk back to camp. Just doing my part to leave the world a better place than I found it in.

The theme for the weekend was God’s Blueprint for Men. We looked at several verses that show how we’re made in the image of God.

The verse that hit closest to home was in Jeremiah 3. That’s where God says He wrote the northern kingdom, Israel, a certificate of divorce.

I know Jesus is our high priest who intercedes for us because He experienced what we all do. It was at that moment I realized even God experienced a divorce.

The reason that hit me so hard is I’m only thirteen months removed from the Collin County court system finalizing my wife’s divorce from me, and I’m just over two months away from surviving what’s supposed to be our 30th wedding anniversary.

On Saturday evening I detoured from the small group discussion we normally have after a session. I walked on the dock to lie down on one of the new benches they built on it to let the experience sink in. We were also shown that we’re to shine like stars so I wanted to soak up the clear night sky for that impact.

As I was lying back I witnessed a star fall from the sky. I prayed it wasn’t mine. I grieved my loss again and allowed the tears to roll onto my temples.

I don’t know how non-Christians cope in this world because my heavenly Abba and I have a relationship that is the only thing that keeps me going most days.

I keep volunteering to do some behind the scenes activities for the men’s retreat so other men can grow in their relationship with God through Jesus Christ, too. For many of them this will be an experience that will do it best.

God always meets me at these retreats. I can’t wait to see how it will occur next time.

Keep smiling.   Wade