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A Father’s Day tribute to Dad

17 Jun

I was thinking about Dad today.  He’s been gone about 14 years now, but his memory and legacy live on in the lives of the Hendrickson family… and the many who knew him.  So I decided to write a little tribute to him on this Father’s Day.  It’s about his ‘homeland’… the island world that greeted him when he entered this world.

Long Island is a 7 mile long island in the middle of the Mississippi River just below Canton, MO.  Three families lived on the island in the early 1900’s.  My grandfather and grandmother and their 5 children were one of those families.  The children’s daily trek to school involved rowing across a small river in the middle of Long Island, walking across Bullock Island, entering another boat and rowing across the main channel of the Mississippi, then walking 3 miles to school in La Grange, MO… and of course they had to follow the same path when returning home each afternoon.  The family lived there until Dad was 12 years old.  As you can imagine that created many stories that were told to the next generations.  The telling of those stories happened on countless occasions through word of mouth… and through a book that my father Jack Hendrickson wrote, entitled; True Tales from Mark Twain Land.

I can remember camping on Long Island when I was just a pup.  We had a 16’ aluminum boat filled with cousins and aunts and uncles and a boxer dog.  I think there were over a dozen of us in that boat. WAY OVER LOADED!  The water was only inches below the gunwales.  Everyone had life jackets but we all knew how to swim.  We rowed across the main channel and about 3 miles downstream from Canton.  Once there, we set up camp on one of Long Island’s sand bars.  Then we traipsed through the itching weeds and undergrowth and swatted myriads of mosquitoes with small leafy branches… all because we were on an almost religious trek back to ‘Mecca’ – the old home place.  The aunts and uncles told big stories that seemed bigger than life to us kids.  It was magical and high adventure.

Much later in life, Dad hired a fisherman to drop off he and my family at the North end of Long Island… then that fisherman returned home.  At the end of our adventure we were going to swim back to a landing on the Illinois side.  Dad told us stories as we walked down the island about a mile to the old home place.  He told us of the white gate… the screech owl… the escaped prisoners… the escaped circus bear… great-grandpa’s fatal fall out of the persimmon tree and if it hadn’t been for great-grandma the pigs would have eaten him, etc.  We walked down the dry bed of what used to be Bullock River and finally arrived at the mound where the house and barn used to stand.  Other than the mound itself, the only evidences of past civilization are some sizable concrete pieces of barn foundation.  Dad told of fun interactions with his siblings, butchering livestock, the cow falling down the barn steps and breaking its neck, rope swinging off of the house roof into Bullock.  He recounted swimming back across Bullock after rounding up the cows from the south end of Bullock Island… they’d catch a cow tail and let the cow pull them across.  Lots of mesmerizing stories that held us all spellbound.

He showed us a humongous sprawling cottonwood tree that was there when he was a kid… 60+ years earlier.  Somewhere over the years he brought a start from the wild rosebush that was near their home on the mound… and planted it at his home in Quincy.  In later years, I got a start of that same rosebush and it grows in my back yard to this day.  It’s vines are fairly unruly and it only blooms about 2 weeks out of the year… but boy is it fragrant!!!

Map of Long Island

Map of Long Island

After hearing all the stories about the old home place, it was time to return home.  We headed across the island to what was left of the old Tenvorde white house to cross the Canton Chute.  We had all been carrying life jackets for swimming back to the Ursa landing on the Illinois side of the river, which was about a mile downriver.  Our 3 boys, about 6 and 8 and 10 years old, were with us.  So Dad, Debbie my wife, the boys and I plunged into the river.  I told everyone that they had to swim like the dickens so as to make it safely around the head of Shandrew Island… otherwise we’d get trapped drifting down the wrong channel that would probably take us most of the way to Quincy!!!  Well, you probably already guessed… those kids soon pooped out.  So what was I to do???  It was going to be up to me to get those kids back across the Canton Chute channel.  So I took off my life jacket and shirt, tied a strap of it around my waist and then let the life jacket, straps and my shirt trail behind.  The boys had to grab any part of it and at least kick… AT LEAST KICK THEIR FEET!!!!!  A caravan of bodies was trying to cross that river.  So, I did back strokes the whole way as I towed them behind me like so much dead weight.  (I’ve swam across a channel of the Mississippi 3 times in my life.)  But guess what, we made it safely and perfectly to the Ursa landing, right where we had left our car.

That was the last time my family was on Long Island.  But just a few months before Dad died, I borrowed a small boat and motor.  I propped him up in cushions and made sure that he was as comfortable as possible.  He and I motored up Canton Chute and Smoot Chute to the head of Long Island… and there we began halfheartedly fishing… (neither of us were avid fishermen).  You see it wasn’t about making a great catch today, it was about spending quality time.  We lazily drifted, catching as many eddies as possible, all the way back to Ursa landing… several miles.  It was very touching for both of us…….. we knew this would probably be the last time he would see his beloved world where he began life’s journey and had lived so many life-forging experiences.  We talked heart… and easy… and tenderly.  It was a precious event in my life… to take a fading generation back to his ‘homeland’ and give him and his homeland the time and value they deserved… to allow time-honored golden memories to slowly emerge up out of the deep places of his heart.  We both knew we were having an epic and timeless encounter.  It satisfied his longings to be with his homeland… and it satisfied my desire to give him… and his life, esteem and honor.  No rush, no push, nothing in particular to accomplish except to be together one last time… near his precious memories.

I think we caught one or two fish that day… which we enjoyed back at the house that evening.

Reliving and retelling his early-years always caused Dad’s eyes to light up.  During his last 9 years before departing this earth, those wonder-filled Long Island memories inspired him to craft True Tales book.  Long Island had formed a boy into a man, and given a soul character, and that character and his God had held a life secure and unshakable in times of testing and shaking.  Less noble men would have likely shipwrecked… or at least capitulated.  I treasure those facets of his life-moorings that became inextricably woven into the fabric of his life.

One of his greatest desires was to pass his venerable values and principles on to the next generation.  Well… I think he did!!!  All of our family (my mother, my sister and her husband… my wife and our four children and their spouses) are passionate Jesus lovers, are involved in ministry (music and speaking), travel the world, and love to give Jesus away wherever we can.

Thank you, Dad!!  Great job!  A life well lived.  I’m so proud of you!!!

— MLH

 

 

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A couple ‘Grand’ announcements…

12 Feb

Dear Friends

We have a ‘Grand’ announcement to make: We’re grandparents again… and again!!!

The grandbabies are popping like rabbits…

This last month we experienced a significant expansion of our tribe… two more healthy males to carry on the Hendrickson name.  For Debbie and I, that makes a total of 7 grandchildren, 4 years old and under… the more the merrier… and they’re a ton of fun.

Introducing……..

Samuel Isaac
January 6, 2017
8lbs 15oz – 21”
Markus and Allison’s second child

 

16387157_10154846207170761_1061228170996636491_nAsher Mark
January 16, 2017
8lbs – 19”
John and Cheryl’s fourth child


Everyone is healthy; mommies, babies and daddies.

Join us in a toast to many more Hendricksons. Hoorah!!!

Lotsa love
Mark & Debbie

— MLH

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Merry Christmas & Happy New Year 2017

25 Dec

merry-christmas-happy-new-year-2017

DPM Update – 2016 February

5 Feb

Dear Friends

Holiday family time
It was tons of fun having all of our kids and grandkids home for the holidays.  We’re so proud of them all!  

Clouds have silver linings
We didn’t have a white Christmas but we finally got some snow a few days later.  Which led to someone plowing into our minivan and totaling it.  Nobody hurt!  But as adventures in God go… just a little cash added to the insurance settlement and we were ‘back in business’ with an upgraded minivan.  God… He’s the best!!

New year fun already
We spent most of our time near home from Thanksgiving until after New Year’s Day.  And it was a needed respite, as we had traveled quite a bit from summer to mid-November.  But since New Year’s Day, we’ve been to sunny San Diego for a semi urgent God-mission… and then to the blizzard-ly Nordt Country on one of my ‘Holy Spirit’ tours. 🙂  God-missions are always exhilarating and rewarding. 

The will of the Father
Jesus said in John 4, “My food is to do the will of the Father.”  And it’s really true from our experience. 

It really doesn’t matter where you are   IF   your satisfaction and contentment is not derived from things and comfort zones.  Paul said it this way, “I’ve learned to be content in whatever state I find myself.”  And “Godliness with contentment is great gain.”  And, “I am all things to all men in order that I might win some.”  You see, Paul had matured to the point that life wasn’t about Paul.  He had learned to find his happiness in Someone higher.  

If ‘self’ is the center of our universe, then life becomes very small awfully quick.  We get bored with ‘self’… and then we get frustrated when others are not serving my ‘self’… which leads to a rocky life and relationships.  But when our objective is to frequently hear the much coveted, “Atta boy” from Father, then as often and wherever that occurs, that place has all the richness of ‘home’, at least for that period of time.  So really, home becomes where the “Atta boy” is.  And as long as we’re following Him wherever He leads… and eagerly saying “Yes” to His promptings, then life is an adventure of joys in a ‘home’ as big as this world… and beyond. 

Actually Buzz Lightyear got it right as he motivated us to go, “To infinity and beyond.”  Or if Buzz doesn’t inspire you, maybe John Wesley will when he said, “All the world is my parish.”   Just think of it… there are no limits to one’s happiness when our home is wherever He is… no matter what country we find ourselves in.  We live in a great country… Kingdom country, that is!

Grandbaby Hendrickson #5 is on his way
Announcing: Chris and Lydia have just passed ½ way on the way toward a home full of baby cries, diapers, coos, snuggles and joy.   Baby Shaw is due sometime in June. 

Take a de-stressor ‘pill’
Try this 1 minute video of pure relaxing… you may want to watch it twice.  I’m sure you Apple people will excuse the Android logo at the end.  🙂

Our love and blessings!!
Mark and Debbie

====================
Dwelling Place Ministries
Hendrickson
11011 Olive St
KC, MO 64131
====================
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Announcing: 14th Annual He-Man Camping, Intl

11 May

Dear He-Man campers (and She-Women, too)

             Official Extravaganza Gala Announcement

Our 14th Annual “He-Man (and She-Woman) Camping Trip, International” will be June 25-27 (Thurs thru Sat)(2 nights and parts of 3 days)  That’s right, it’s just over a month away.

This year we’ll be combining ALL types (manly types, girlie types and the ‘small fry’) for ALL three days and two nights.  It’s a family camp out.IMG_20130815_073048

Same place – South Central Missouri – Near Mt View, MO on the beautiful Jacks Forks River.  More details coming on the web site below.  Just look at the serenity in this pic!

Like all years, everyone is responsible for their own camping gear, travel, food and expenses. Camp sites are free.  I’ll supply the water, the large tarp for over the camp fire area… and the opportunity.  🙂

So mark your calendars and gather your gear for another extravaganza of epic proportions.  And just for a reminder of how epic it is, here are some things to look forward to:

~ Experience the priceless koinonia of tent-city group camping on a bed of gravel.  It’s sorta like the Early Church… many things are shared in common, like:  good victuals, snoring, tall story-telling, and… Ok, you get the idea.

~ Expect some sumptuous meals!!  It’s pretty doggone good when ya get to eat this good and this much on a campout.  Refresh your fire building skills… and cooking-over-an-open-fire skills… like the cave men did.  Or bring your Coleman cheater ‘cooker thang’ with fourteen gas burners and temperature controlled cake ovens, etc…  Don’t forget to wash your cookware in the ‘automatic washer’ down at the river’s edge.

~ Then you can lather up your bod and scrub the day’s grime off… just before retiring for the evening.  If we’re lucky we’ll hear the eerie sounds of the screech owl and the hoots of the hoot owl… and see an occasional bat flit through the firelight.  Watch superb fire demonstrations from hollow logs and special effects… thnx to Dave Wyatt’s legacy.  Fight off marauding bandits… the wild racoons that come out just after dark.  Warning: for protection, all women and children must stay in the center tents… near the fire.  The veteran He-Men who have survived previous battles with the bandits, will stand watch and protect those sleeping.  So just relax and fall asleep to nature’s ‘white noise’ sleep noise from the frogs, cicadas and crickets… interspersed with raccoon chatters or growls as they’re fought back into the darkness of the night.  Then wake to nature’s alarm clock… the whip-o-wils… at about ‘o-dark-thirty’, for an early start at a fresh new day.

~ During the day, we’ll rally the dam builders to work on the dam projects.  Swim, fish, skip rocks, catch a crappie bare handed… or just soak up some sun.  Don your swim mask and enjoy the underwater wonder-world of bass, crappie and an occasional scary-barracuda-looking billy gar.  We’ll assemble a major world class crawdaddy catching… and eating… delegation.  A few howls and screams… from a painful pincer/claw… are absolutely necessary in order to prove that we’re having lotsa fun.

~ Prepare for the mind (and body) numbing cold water ‘polar bear’ swim to the back of the spring cave.  This qualifies you to be a full-fledged and duly authorized member of the true He-Man International legacy.  And you will belong to the High Order of Dingbats… including several other very distinguished titles.  Your skin will turn red first… then blue… and then… O, well, don’t worry, the undertaker can fix that.  And we will also officially pronounce to you, “You are now more of a man than your mother!”

~ Join an intrepid expedition through the caves… at least the easy cave.  If we only lose one or two people in the easy one, we’ll then proceed to the harder one.  Brace your shivering self as you take a shower in the 12 foot water-fall in the cave entrance room.

~ Expect to get really good at spotting itching weed/nettles and poison ivy… remember, “Leaves of 3, let it be!”  If you don’t get good at spotting them… then expect to get good at wishing that you did. 

Or… ignore all of my gobbledygook and just relax, dial-down, veg out… and enjoy the R&R like most everyone does.  We have a ton of fun and lotsa hangout fellowship.

For pics, tips and quips check out the He-man Facebook page here:  http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=109356022452575&ref=ts

Please feel free to forward this email to anyone who might be interested.

See you soon… if you’re not a city-fied scaredy-cat.  
Mark & Debbie

Family Matters: My Three Sons!

7 Feb
ThreeSonsStudio - 14-12

The brothers are reunited in the studio where they’ve worked on hundreds of recording projects.  Many wonderful God-encounters, national and international relationships and lifetime memories have happened in this room. 

This is a rare pic of our three sons together in our basement studio.  Each of them got their start at recording music in this very spot.  Fifteen years and hundreds of CDs later they literally have, and currently still are, shaping the sound of worship around the world.  Each of them are exceptionally skilled in their crafts.  It’s amazing to listen to their anointed creativity that continues to ‘paint’ new sounds and combinations of sounds that stir Heaven and unlock the souls of the listeners.  And all of that is on top of rock-solid character and an exemplary heart after God.

How many breakthroughs, how many happy tears and happy dances have you inspired with your sounds?  The Lord knows and is delighted that you’ve learned how to hear and recreate the melodies and sounds of Heaven.  Awesome job, my sons!  We’re so proud of you!!!

Currently:
* Markus is involved with live and studio recording, mixing and playing bass/guitar and IT focuses at Grace Center Church in Franklin, TN.

* Luke is involved with live and studio recording, mixing and playing keys for his own business and at Bethel Church and Bethel Music in Redding, CA.
* John is involved with live and studio recording, mixing and playing drums for his own business and at IHOP-KC in Kansas City, MO.

–MLH

DPM Update – 2014 June

14 Jun

Dear Friends              

Chris and Lydia are married!!  
It was a great wedding day with lots of pomp and circumstance and fun festivities in Redding, CA.  The months of detailed preparations by Debbie, Lydia and others finally came together.  And by all reviews, the 250 guests had an amazing time.

Chris and Lydia just arrived back home from their honeymoon.  I’m sure there will be official pictures soon, but here are a few snapshots.  Pic#1  Pic#2  Pic#3

Lydia’s the last one to get married.  Whew!!!  Now Debbie and I can make decisions without having to ask our kids… we’re foot loose and fancy free!!!  😉   But actually, we’ve been empty-nesters for about 4 years… now we’re enjoying the new ‘crop’ of grandkids.

Picture collage of Chris & Lydia shown at their wedding reception (about 7 mins)

Upcoming Schedule

~ New Day Church here in KC on June 15 (tomorrow)

Cornerstone Church – Prairie du Chein, WI – June 22

Living Well Faith Comm Church – Wausau, WI – June 26-29
(Love of God Extravaganza)

~ Simon’s house church – Hixton, WI – June 29

Cross Creek Ministries – Family Camp – Lebanon, MO – July 3-4

~ Dave & Ann Clark – San Diego, CA – July 7-14

~ Dick’s house church – Mt Lake, MN – July 19

13th Annual ‘He-Man’ Camp (for families) – Mt View, MO – July 24-26

~ West Coast Bread of Life Family Conference – Murrietta, CA – Aug 22-24

Regional Leaders meeting – Springfield, MO – Aug 30

Women’s Aglow Conf – Greenlake, WI – Sept 12-13

Johnny Wang & Shelley Wu Wedding – Acadia, CA – Sept 14 

Upper Midwest GL meetings – Rochester, MN – Sept 29-30

~ ‘Kiss San Diego’ – San Diego, CA – Oct 8-18

Everybody say it with me: Change is fun!!
As you are likely experiencing, our understanding of: abounding grace… our Father’s love for us… and our own identity, has shifted immensely over the last few of years… and continues to shift.  Everything is moving so fast that it’s like we’re surfing a mega-wave and feeling the raw power of these transformational revelations… and we’re watching in exhilarating wonder as the theological scenery radically changes around us.  

When I saw this pic below, it impacted me how we’re on an epic ride of our lives.  We have our floaties and goggles on and our mouth is agape in total exhilaration.  Master Surfer Daddy has created an astounding wave of abounding grace.  He helped us find the wave and He’s riding it with us (guess who’s in control)… and He’s got us totally covered.  Wow!

Hang on for the ride of our lives.  As the Mario Bros. video game says, “Here we go!!!”Riding The Abounding Grace Wave

For more on Surf’s Up….

This little piggie went to market…
Last week I officiated a wedding in Iowa for a great couple, a fun family and at a beautiful outdoors venue.  And guess what?  They gave us a whole butchered, packaged and frozen pig.  Is that fun or what?!!  Beyond being totally grateful for having all that meat in the freezer, getting a pig is tons of fun purely for the conversational aspect.  We remember in the ‘old days’ both of our parents would receive gifts of farm products (meat, eggs, milk, garden produce, canned goods, etc) for their pastoral services.  It was always a great then… and it is now!!  We’ve already had some good eatin’ and I can already taste the pork steaks on the bbq grill, soon!  You gotta love how Father provides.

Nailing the male/female problem:
Women want a guy to just listen and understand while men just want to fix the problem…  http://youtu.be/-4EDhdAHrOg (approx 2 mins)

Salute to US Veterans
Memorial Day is just behind us and today is Flag Day in the US.  In honor of those who have served our country, watch this deeply moving ‘no-words’ video:  http://youtu.be/uoABty_zE00 (approx 1 min)

Lotsa love

Mark and Debbie

=====================
Dwelling Place Ministries
Hendrickson
11011 Olive St
KC, MO 64131
=====================
Web: www.dpmkc.org
Blog: www.marklhen.wordpress.com
Mark FB: www.facebook.com/marklhen
SP bk FB: www.facebook.com/spforu