Tuesday, April 20, 2010

John Cox - Computer Operator

Found this Letter today - Lots of memories at the SOS...

Friday, January 15, 2010

Hi All

I have been extremely busy lately and not had time to add much to the blog... I will continue to add as I have time... I have a lot more stories.... If you would like to be notified when I post a new story let me know and I will setup the automatic notice....

As some you know... I am the Chairman of the Personnel Committee, Audio\Visual Committee and the Chairman of the Pastor Search Committee... We have 7 on the search committee plus the church secretary... We currently have 90 resumes to evaluate to get down to three candidates. I have a project plan and am working the plan.. Everything is going as planned and we are a week ahead of schedule... I fully understand that I am really on God's schedule and doing his plan, but it's nice to know that he is right there there with us. Please pray that I can keep the momentum up.

We vote on the intrum Pastor Sunday night. Dr. Weedman is a good man and Pastor, so I pray that the church body will vote him in.

Amelia birthday is tomorrow...

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

This is the ship that Daddy was on to Cross over to Africa. The Thomas H. Barry...

Daddy left for Africa on December8, 1942.... arrived in Casablanca, North Africa on December 24th 1942. As per Daddy's writings " Our first air raid came after 1200 midnight on December 31. No one was hit in the company, although there was one man hit in the Battlalion. The Company dug their fox hole the following morning".

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Can he Swim Yet

When I was young I remember going fishing as a family. Mom, daddy and the three girls. I remember one time going to a park with big trees and a lake, for some reason I think it was in Jacksonville. Daddy would take off and be gone fishing around the lake. I would stay with the girls and fish close to mom. Then one day it was just me and daddy going fishing. I don’t remember when, but I asked daddy why mom and the girls didn’t go fishing with us anymore. Daddy said that they only went to watch me, so that I didn’t fall in the water and drown. If you knew daddy this made perfect sense to him. Then I knew why he was after me to take swimming lessons. Once he knew that I could swim, he didn’t need anyone to watch me. I should tell you that I fell into the water a lot. I think that daddy missed the point of the family going together. I wish that he would have taken mom and the girls, it was a lot more fun and I liked being with the whole family.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The Big Band Sound of Spectrum

I played with these guys for over 10 years... we had a lot a fun...

Play movie to hear us.....

Friday, November 13, 2009

Lily at the Park

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Summers at the river

Daddy told me stories of him living at the river during the summers when school was out. He showed me one time where they used to camp out and what I remember it more like a small stream. He said that it was something that his friends and him would do every year. He said that they mostly just ate fish and frogs. Daddy did not have a good home life and I think this was a way to get away. Daddy said that Aunt Dot and Uncle Ralf would give them food and he would work on farms to make money. I’m sure that grandma and grandpa Cox were OK with him being out of the house. Daddy said that his friends and him would catch a slow moving train in Auburn and ride the rails for a few days and then work their way back to Auburn. He said that they would go all over the central part of the United States. He said that they never had any problems. He said that a lot of older kids road the rails back when he was a kid. I think that daddy really enjoyed those times during the summers of his youth.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Get a Real Job by Age 35

When I was growing up and when I was an adult, Daddy would tell me that I needed to find a job with a pension by the time I was 35. He said that a person needed 30 years in a pension system so that they could retire at age 65. I always remember what he told me. When I left the Secretary of States office, I had around 10 years of retirement that I could have cashed in. Vicky and I decided to roll the money into a 401k, so that I could put it back into the State retirement if I ever returned. When I returned to State Government three and half years later I rolled that money back into my retirement. Well I’m not 65, but I do have 31 years at the state. If I retire at 65 I will have around 38 years at the State. Daddy had good advice on working and retirement.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


Sunday, October 11, 2009

Hell on Wheels - Daddy's Map

This is the map that daddy got at the end of the war.. Daddy was in every campaign on the map.

Double click on map to view a larger size..

Thursday, October 8, 2009


Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Bull

I know that Daddy told me this story when I was young, because we were still hunting on Uncle Ralph’s land. Daddy said that when he was very young, him and Grandpa Cox were over at Uncle Ralph’s farm. Uncle Ralph was in the pasture , when all of a sudden a bull charged him and got him down on the ground. Daddy said that Grandpa Cox jump over the fence and grabbed the bull by the horns and pull him off of Uncle Ralph. Daddy said that Grandpa twisted the bulls neck so much that he though that it would break. Once uncle Ralph was up, Grandpa let the bull go. Daddy said that he knew that Grandpa Cox was strong, but he was amazed that he could subdue that big bull.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Daddy - Work History

Delbert Cox Work History

Peabody Coal Mine 58 Taylorville.......01/30/1950 to 01/26/1952
Peabody Coal Mine 10 Pawnee............ 01/26/1952 to 06/22/1953
Peabody Coal Mine 11 Taylorville....... 06/23/1953 to 01/20/1954
Peabody Coal Mine 10 Pawnee........... 01/22/1954 to 08/01/1980

Peabody Coal Mine 10 Pawnee Operator or Second man on the continuous miner from the time it came to Peabody Coal Mine 10 in 1957...

Peabody Coal Mine 10 Pawnee 1976 Boom Operator - Loading Coal into Train cars
Worked in the Coal mines for 35 years - Retired August 1, 1980

Worked at Saint John's Hospital for 3 years....

Worked for the American Telephone and Telegraph company for 1 year

Spend 4 years and 4 months in the Army

Sold Machinery for 2 1/2 years

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

From Debbie

Thank you for the sweet message on Stan and hearing his voice again. Yes, we will continue the work until the end of our days... because God is still with us and still in control. I am referring to Oasis. The church is growing and God is moving. Last Sunday was the first year anniversary of his death. I didn't preach because I knew I couldn't get through it. August has been a hard month for me. I was ordained 2times on Aug. 9th. (once by Elim and the other by the Mexican equivalent.) It was a bitter sweet day. On Aug. 16, Robbie and Pat Evans were with us. (Remember Robbie did the funeral.) Stan was in their wedding and we have been friends for 35 yrs. They preached at Oasis and also took Justin and I out to dinner the night before. Then on Aug. 23rd, we baptized 31 people. This was the first time I had done that. It was always Stan. Another bitter sweet event. And then last Sunday---- you could hear sobbing throughout the service. He is greatly missed by us.

One thing you forgot to mention on your blog...how much Stan loved. He loved me very much, and our kids. He loved Mexico and Mexicans. He loved his family and total strangers. Stan simply loved. You could mistreat him, betray him or anything else, and he still loved. I have seen him with a broken heart by unkind words, or unkind people, and after he cried, prayed, he loved again. The people in our church always say he HAD the fruit of the spirit in him ( Gal. 5:22) love, joy, peace, patience...etc. I learned a lot from him, lessons that I need now to continue in his steps.

I miss him terribly. I always will. And I will always love him......

From John - Debbie is right Stan loved her and the kids very much. Stan told me so several times when I talked to him those last weeks. One of the last conversations that I had with Stan was about Debbie and the kids. Stan was a loving husband, father, brother, cousin, friend, Pastor and man.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Monday, August 31, 2009


It’s been a year......
Stan was my Cousin, my Brother in Christ, and my friend. Stan and I go way back.... to the beginning. Stan and I were both born in 1952 and we both were drawn together because of the close family that we were blessed with. Stan told me that his earliest memories of me were at Aunt Alma’s on the porch. He said that I liked getting out in front of everyone to dance and act crazy. Stan said that I grabbed his arm and pulled him out to dance and act crazy in front of the family. My first memories of Stan is of us playing in Aunt Alma’s back yard. I can’t explain it, but I always felt that Stan and I were connected somehow. In our preteens we did things together, but always with the family. I remember a trip to Kentucky were we would walk around the farm and talk and talk. Then there was the gap of many years where I really don’t remember having much contact with Stan. Then one day Stan and Debbie walked into our White Hen Pantry on Sangamon. They just stopped by to say hi and tell us that they were heading to Language school so that they could be missionaries. That was beginning of a 20+ year relationship with Stan and Debbie. Over the years we saw their ministries touch thousands of people. Vicky and I always told Stan and Debbie that we were so grateful that they let us be part of something so wonderful and special. I am not one to talk on the phone, so Stan and my conversations were usually in the minutes not hours, but we both knew what the other was thinking. Our goal was to make sure that Stan and Debbie knew that they could count on us. We wanted to be consistent. I could go on and on, but I wanted to write about things I leaned about Stan.
God comes first.
The mission in the early years was based on establishing churches and training national Pastors in the work.
The mission in the later years was based on establishing a church and training nationals in the work.
Stan and Debbie were a team. He told me several times that he could not have done it without her.
The most important thing about supporting the mission was being consistent.
We (all that supported them) were directly involved in the work of bringing the lost to Christ.
Sometimes it makes more sense to send money than bring a large group down to do work.
He still liked Mel-O-Creme Donuts.
His heart was in Preaching the Word. Stan was very good at teaching God’s Word.
His heart was with the Mexican people. He truly loved them.
He was amazed at the number and generosity of the people that support their mission.
If you don’t have to, don’t go out after dark if you don’t speak Spanish.
Mexican’s are warm and friendly people.
American health care is to expensive.
Mexican health care is good. Stan trusted the Mexican health care.
Don’t take good cars across into Mexico unless you have someone that speaks Spanish with you.
Mexico was the most import United States allies. Good relationships with Mexico was important to our security. More US companies needed to build factories in Mexico.
Stan was a conservative. He believed in traditional values.
He always wanted to live in Mexico.
He was very proud that Mexico was sending out missionaries to other countries.
Sometimes he put his life on the line, but he felt that God was always in control.
Stan was a deep thinker, you could tell from watching Stan that he took it all in and then spoke.
The last couple of times that I spoke with Stan
Stan told me that he was very proud of his kids.
Stan told me that the time he got to spend with the kids was very special, a blessing from God.
Stan told me that the time he got to spend with his sisters was very special.
Stan told me that he was not afraid to die, he was afraid that he would let people down, not being able to finish the work..
Stan told me that God was in control.
Stan told me that Mexico was his home and that is where he always wanted to be.
Stan was concerned about his loved ones salvation. If you read this and have not accepted Jesus as you savor, please take time to ask him into your heart. That was Stan's number one mission.
Stan told me that he loved me... that was special to me.
Stan’s mission continues and is growing. Stan said that he would continue his mission in Mexico until the day he died, and he did. Generations of Mexicans will talk about Stan Hopwood and how his and Debbie’s mission lead their loved ones to Christ.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Monday, August 24, 2009

Question - Mom and Daddy


What Company did both Mom and Daddy work For?????

Answer: AT&T


Friday, August 21, 2009

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Don’t Ever Count on an Inheritance

Uncle Ralf owned a farm on the land where the Kincaid power plant was built and where some of lake Sangchris is. I don’t know how big Uncle Ralf’s farm was, but I now that it was very large operation. Well, Uncle Ralf became a millionaire over night when he sold all that land so that the power plant and lake could be built. The deal included that he could keep the acre that his farm house set on and they would maintain the road that went to his house. Well, Uncle Ralf and Aunt Dot bought a big old Cadillac and started traveling throughout the United States and Canada.

Several years later Uncle Ralf and Aunt Dot stopped by to see mom and Dad. I remember Uncle Ralf talking to Daddy about them wanted him and mom to travel with them. Uncle Ralf told daddy that if he retired and if mom and he would start traveling with them that he would sign all the money over to him. They were lonely.

Daddy said that it was a hard decision, but he told Uncle Ralf no. Daddy said that he couldn’t leave his family and grand kids for long periods of time.

Uncle Ralf then told daddy if he died first that all the money would go to Aunt Dot’s side of the family. If Aunt Dot died first then all the money would go to daddy.

After Uncle Ralf and Aunt Dot left, daddy told me don’t ever count on an Inheritance. Anything could happen to the money.

Uncle Ralf was like a father to daddy. They were very close.

Years later Aunt Dot died. Later Uncle Ralf married a woman and all the money went to her.

So, daddy was right, “Don’t Ever Count on an Inheritance.”

Was it the right decision, I think so. Mom and daddy would have been gone months at a time. I think it would have been harder on mom than daddy.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

No Job for you

After high school Daddy work on farms and for the railroad. But for some reason he found himself out of work. He went to his dad and asked him to help him get a job. Grandpa Cox was the one that placed people on state jobs like working road crews. I think that daddy said that Grandpa was Precinct Committeeman for Sangamon County. Well the answer was NO! Daddy told me that he never knew why Grandpa would not help him, he just said no, get your own job. I know that this hurt my dad very deeply. Well daddy started walking to Springfield from Auburn every day looking for a job. He said that sometimes he would get a ride, but many times he walked all the way... Well he finally got a job at St. Johns hospital. Daddy would sterilize the equipment and make up the surgical packages each day. He said that he really enjoyed this job. Daddy worked at Saint John's Hospital for three years.. He left there when he enlisted into the ARMY the day after Pearl Harbor.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

They Fed The Hungry

Daddy said that during the depression times were hard, but they always had food, but many in Auburn did not. The one story I remember is that Grandpa Cox (Bill) would take daddy out and they would kill lots and lots of rabbits. Daddy said that they would have many gunny sacks full of rabbits. Grandpa and daddy would then go house to house and grandpa would give each house the number of rabbits that it would take to feed the family for a few days. Daddy said that grandpa would also give them enough lard to fry the rabbits. Daddy said that the lard was very important as most people did not have access to lard. Grandpa and daddy would butcher cows and render the fat to make the lard. Daddy said that they did this often. Daddy told me this story several times and it always made him smile. I think that daddy was proud that they could help feed people in need.

Monday, August 10, 2009


I am lucky to have three sisters that love me. I can see parts of Mom in each of them. As we mature, they say that we get more and more like our parents, in this case that is good. I really appreciate that my sisters love and are concerned about me. That relationship is rare within families. Well maybe not as rare in the Durham line.. Just wanted to take time and tell them that I love them and their families. I always look forward to any activity that will allow me to spend time with my sisters.

Thursday, August 6, 2009


When Darrell was very young, he came up missing over at mom and daddy’s house. Everyone was looking for him. Nobody could find him... Then someone looked up, and there Darrell was, at the top of the television antenna, watching us. I think he thought that it was funny. I can’t remember who, but someone started to climb up the antenna to get him. That is when Daddy yelled to stop... Daddy said that it would be safer for Darrell to come down on his own. Well he came down and everyone was relieved. Kids!!!

Years later mom took Darrell to the new White Oaks mall. They were on the second floor. Mom said that She took her eyes off Darrell for just a minute and when she looked back Darrell had climbed up on the rail and was just setting there looking over the rail at the people below.... It would not have taken a whole lot for him to fall to the first floor. I wasn’t there, but I bet mom let out a scream that could have been heard all over the mall. Mom said that she grabbed his arm and pulled him back to safety. I bet Darrell doesn’t even know that his grandma Cox saved his life.

I guess he just liked the view from up there......

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

I’m Shot

Sometimes kids do the stupidest thing. When I was 11 or 12, Curt Edwards (friend from across the street) and I were at Labor day watching a honor guard fire their rifles. They used to do that on Labor day. Well, we watched the guys when the got done and they went into the basement of the Community Building. After they were gone, Curt and I went down to see what we could see..... What we found were these huge bullets (blanks). We took a couple... We were kids.. They shouldn’t have left them out... We went home and tried to find a way to shoot one. We finally came up with the bright idea of clipping one to moms clothes line. I got out my trusty Benjamin air rifle, which could shoot through a 55 gallon trash can (both sides). Curt took two or three shots at the end of the bullets with no luck. So, I took my turn. There was this ear deafening explosion and I think wow I hit it. Then I heard those words from Curt “I’m Shot”. I look over and said where, he pointed at his arm and there was a hole in it were a piece of the casing hit him. It was starting to bleed. We both just stood there, then we looked over at Curt’s house and his mom Joyce was standing on their font porch just looking at us. Curt put his hand over the wound and walked over to his mom. After awhile Curt came out with a bandage on his arm. We had to give Joyce the other blanks and she told us we were lucky we didn’t lose an eye. Never heard another thing about it, so I guess she didn’t tell mom or daddy about it. I’d like to say that was last stupid thing I did, but it wasn’t. More on that later.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Blessed Money

Malachi makes it clear that the tithe already belongs to God.
In Psalm 24 David declares “ The earth is the Lord’s, and all it contains.

The Bible makes it clear, He owns it all. We are stewards or managers of the things that God has intrusted to us.

Giving God what already belongs to Him is not so much an act of stewardship; it simply keeps us from being a thief.

In Malachi 3:11 God promises to rebuke the devourer.

Pastor Mark has taught us that God does not need our money he needs our obedience. The tithe severs as a testimony that we believe that God owns both the spiritual and material things within our lives.

In Hebrew, the word tithe is maaser and in the Greek it is dekate. The Literal meaning of both words is tenth.

Stewardship begins with tithing but continues with the remaining 90 percent. The 90 percent actually belongs to God as well, because we belong to God and He created everything.

A few weeks ago Vicky and I were watching IWORSHIP before going to Church and Pastor Hansen was preaching on Blessed Money. This is a very powerful concept.

Simply, Blessed Money is the 90% that is left over after the Tithe. If we Tithe and if we are good Stewards of what God has given us, then the remaining 90% is blessed.

Offerings are anything that you give in addition to your Tithe, such as gifts for special projects, the church building funds, missions, etc. If you give to missions and do not Tithe, then your money is not blessed.

Vicky and I believe that everything that we do with the remaining 90% is blessed money and that concept has opened up a whole new understanding of God’s commandment to Tithe and what we do with that 90%.


Monday, July 27, 2009

Shot Him Dead

I always knew that Grandpa Cox (William) was tough and sometimes down right mean. Daddy used to tell me stories about Grandpa Cox when we would go fishing and hunting. I can’t remember what sparked this story about Grandpa Cox and the Coal Wars.

Daddy said that he came home from school one day and Grandpa was setting at the table with a big bandage on his cheek. Daddy asked him what had happened and Grandpa said that he had been shot. This is what daddy said.

Grandpa went to a mine where picketers were blocking the entrances to the mine or business offices. He got out of his car and a guy came up and shot him in the face. Grandpa was talking at the time and the bullet entered his mouth, hit a tooth and exited through the side of his cheek.

Daddy said that grandpa always carried two, pearl handled handguns, with him wherever he went.

I asked daddy what grandpa did. He said that Grandpa Cox took out his gun and shot the guy dead. I asked daddy if grandpa went to prison. He said no. It was not that uncommon for someone to get shot and even killed and anyway the other guy shot grandpa first.

Daddy said that grandpa and the men he hung around with would not hesitate to protect themselves, their families or their friends. Cross Grandpa Cox and you could end up dead.


Wednesday, July 22, 2009


I don't know anyone that had a better Mom than we did. Our Aunts (on Mom’s side of the family) were very close.

I remember saying to the girls after I had carried Mom's casket to the hearse that us kids had a good Mom. I think back now, knowing what I know, and realize that we didn't have just a good Mom, we had an amazing Mom.

Mom was always their for us. When we needed our Mom, she stopped what she was doing and was by our side.

I like to tell people that I never got up in the middle of the night that I didn't see Mom with one of the girls. She was always there. Mom allowed us kids to be kids. When it rained and the yard and street would flood, Mom let us go outside to play in the water. We had friends over constantly, inside and outside the house, and I can’t remember Mom ever saying no.

I never knew that Mom got up real early and cleaned. Bonnie told me when I was an adult that Mom would get up early to get everything clean before we got up in the mornings. I just thought that the house was always clean. I know now that keeping that old house clean was a major job, especially with 4 kids and a husband.

And the food, Mom’s food was always hot and always good. I don’t know how she did it, but Mom always burnt the edge of the meat just a little for me. The only things I didn’t like was liver and beans. I think that the liver was daddy’s idea. I still don’t like beans, but liver is ok. Any of my friends that were lucky enough to eat at our house wanted to come back for more.

And the band, we practiced at our house a lot and Mom never said no, she never said turn it down... She just kept encouraging us... You have to know that we were very very very loud. I think Robert, Ron and Mark all liked the lunches and suppers that Mom made us.

Mom spent hundreds and hundreds of hours with me working on my spelling.. She never give up on me. Mom knew that I wasn’t stupid just because I can’t spell.

Even with all the grief that daddy gave mom over the years, she still loved him until the day he died.

The one thing I really miss about Mom is the phone calls I would get at work every few weeks. We didn’t talk a lot, she just wanted to know how I was doing...

I tell people that I had the perfect home when I was growing up. I know that it wasn’t perfect, but I do know that my Mom loved me and my sisters and showed us love every day.


Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The American form of government

A history lesson...everyone needs to see this video.



Only One Could Go

I was talking with our cousin Joyce (daddy’s niece) a few years ago about Grandpa Cox (William). Joyce said that when she was in high school that Grandpa Cox arranged for her to go to Washington and met with President Dwight D. Eisenhower. Eisenhower was President from 1953 -1961. Joyce did not say what year she went. Joyce told me that Grandpa was a friend of Eisenhower and had talked to him about her coming. Joyce said that she got to the White House she waited awhile and then they took her into the Oval office to meet the President. She said they talked for about 15 minutes and then they escorted her out. Joyce said that meeting the President in the Oval office was the most exciting thing that she had ever done in her life. It would have been interesting to know what they talk about, Joyce did not share that information.

I asked Joyce why some of the other older kids did not get to go... Joyce’s answer was “you know grandpa”. We will never know why he only chose one to go. Maybe that is all that Ike would see, or maybe he did not even think about sending someone else. Whatever, that was a good answer, that was how Grandpa Cox was.

This story explains a lot about daddy and WWII... That is another story....

Monday, July 20, 2009

National Day of Prayer

Please add to your calendar. National Day of Prayer October 16-18 2009

Pastor Stan Pratt

This was printed for the Taylorville Breeze-Courier Taylorville Ministerial Letter on Friday, July 17, 2009.

Submitted by: Pastor Stan Pratt
The Way of Life Church
1929 W. Spresser St.
Taylorville, IL 62568

The Apostle Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 3:1-4 (Amplified Bible) “But understand this, that in the last days will come [set in] perilous times of great stress and trouble [hard to deal with and hard to bear]. For people will be lovers of self and [utterly] self-centered, lovers of money and aroused by an inordinate [greedy] desire for wealth, proud and arrogant and contemptuous boasters. They will be abusive [blasphemous, scoffing], disobedient to parents ungrateful, unholy and profane. [They will be] without natural affection [callous and inhuman], relentless [admitting to no truce or appeasement]; [they will be] slanderers [false accusers, troublemakers], intemperate and loose in morals and conduct, uncontrolled and fierce, haters of good. [They will be] treacherous [betrayers], rash, [and] inflated with self-conceit. [They will be] lovers of sensual pleasures and vain amusements more than and rather than lovers of God”

Sounds like reading or hearing the daily news doesn’t it?

The Prophet Joel asked in Joel 1:2 “ - - Has anything like this
happened in your days or in your fathers days?” His statement is
concerning the troubles of the nation - a shrinking economy and more.
The stark circimstances are then attributed to the ceasation of God-honoring lifestyles.

Scripture also warns of many “being deceived” in these “last days”.
To “be deceived” is to believe a lie, to deny what is truth, to accept what is false as true or real. What about you and me? Where are we in this picture? Are we walking in truth, or are we among those deceived - at least partially? We can certainly agree with Joel’s question concerning it being different than we have ever seen it before can’t we? We should, as Christians see that much of the troubles or perils of these days are due to the shrinking back of men and women standing for truth - real truth, the Word of God, Christ who is Truth, and the Holy Spirit who is the witness of Truth. Sin is the issue. Not some “problem,” but rather not honoring the God of
all creation by refusing to accept Christ as redeemer or as the real
answer to that which is destroying us. The issue is life and death -
the life of God, which brings His covenant blessings, or death which
leaves us separted from Him.

How foolish, that many who consider themselves part of the “church”
fit right into the statements made by Paul to Timothy quoted above!
And worse yet, defend their position(s) as being “okay”! How can we
deny the truth of Scripture and expect blessings to abound? How
can we stand silently by while so many declare as truth that which is
false? A danger in that is we also will become deceived because we
are not “standing in truth”. We risk mingling the Holy and the
profane by thinking all is okay even as we are denying the power of
God to bring His blessings into our lives - personally and / or as a
nation. Examples would include those who say they are “christian”,
and yet support abortion and sexual perversions of some or all types,
or those who openly deny the truths of Scripture in one or more areas
as “old fashioned” or say that Scripture / God changes with the
advancement of mankind. Wake up! God never changes, Christ is the
same, yesterday, today and forever. God honors His Word above His
name and won’t alter it for anyone or any generation, period!

Even if a President says “America is not a Christian nation”, we as
christians must arise and realize that if we are not a Christian
nation, then we are no longer the United States of America that the
writers of our Declaration of Independence, our Constitution, the Bill
of Rights, many of our Presidents and Judges declared us to be. Even
if a President declares a month to honor sexual perversion pridefully,
we as christians must arise and say that we are not proud of sin being
honored on our land. We must declare that for us and our
household(s), we will serve and honor the Lord! Especially, we who
are Pastors / leaders in the christian community must stand firm in
truth lest we become party to deceiving multitudes in our spheres of
influence. I personally do not want to stand before Christ trying to
explain “why” I bought into deceptive issues so clearly stated in
Scripture! I don’t want any under the sound of my voice to either!

Recently, I stood with about fifty other Christian leaders from across
Illinois and declared that “This nation was founded on Godly
principles, formed as a nation under God, and stands on that
foundation”. We decreed that “this foundation will not be destroyed
or changed by the voice of man” and that “the belief of Christian
principles and a nation in need of a Savior and Lord is inherent in
our Constitution”. We decreed that “America was born a Christian
nation, is still a Christian nation and will forever be.” Standing
as one, we renounced and rejected the President’s decrees that we are
not a Christian nation and the decree of June, 2009 as a month to
honor sexual perversion as a lifestyle. Although our President is
trying to issue a decree that supercedes the Word of God, it “will
not stand because the Word of the Lord stands forever”. We declared
that these presidential decrees had exalted themselves against the
knowledge and design of God. We agreed to choose submission to those
authorities over us who are submitted to the Lordship of Jesus Christ
and the Word of God. Where that differs, we choose to follow the
Lord. In our sphere of authority, we will decree righteousness. We
will not condone rebellion, sin, appeasement or ungodly decrees with

Things contrary to God and His Word are happening and will happen
increasingly in this world, but we, as Christians, though in this
world are not of it. We will stand in Him and see the salvation of
our God. We do not have to be partakers of those things contrary to
God and His Word. We are partakers of His divine nature so that we
can release His light into the darkness of this world. We, as
Christians are here, in such a time as this, to bring glory and honor
to Him through Christ so that of the increase of His government and
peace, there is no end, and that the knowledge of His glory will cover
the earth as the waters cover the sea. Our hearts desire is that all
men repent and come to the great salvation which is available by grace
through faith in Christ.

Be blessed as you choose to honor God and His Word at all times.

If God is for you who can be against you?

Together, we advance the victory of the King of the Kingdom!

Stan Pratt
Pastor, The Way of Life Church
First Vice President, World Ministry Fellowship
Facilitator, DP Prayer Shield Team
Co-Coordinator, Illinois NDP

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Monday, July 13, 2009

William Cox

William Cox

Born 04/13/1892
Died 08/30/1967
Mother - Mary Hendricks

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Sinbad Was Really Mom's Dog

Not sure what year we got Sinbad, but it had to be in the late 50s to the early 60s. Sinbad was a Cocker Spaniel. He was the son of Harold and Joyce Edward's dog. I believe that her name was Lady. When we brought him home to see if we could keep him, we made all the promises that kids make, like we will feed him and keep him clean. Well that lasted for awhile, but then mom took over the job of taking care of Sinbad. I named Sinbad after the movie that I had seen (The 7th Voyage of Sinbad) . I liked the name. Sinbad was a good dog. He liked us and we liked him. I think the biggest plus was that mom loved him. Sinbad was a inside/outside dog, he came and went as he wished. He used to lay on the floor by the side door in the kitchen. He also like to lay on the cool concrete on the porch in the summer time. Sinbad followed us kids around all over Edinburg. He would go fishing with me and I would take him hunting sometimes. I didn't like taking him hunting because his fur would get all tangled from the stickers bushes. He would go with us up to the old grad school to play (the one that is not there any more)
I remember coming over to mom and daddy for some reason and mom being really upset that Sinbad was sick. Daddy told me that we needed to take him to the vet. After mom had said her goodbyes to Sinbad we headed to Tylorville to the vets office. On the way to the Vet, daddy told me that Sinbad would not be coming home with us. Daddy said that Sinbad's kidneys were shutting down and that he was in a lot of pain. I remember holding Sinbad on the long trip to Taylorville. The Vet told us that his kidneys had shut down and there was nothing he could do. The doctor letting us stay in the room while he gave him the shot.. It didn't take long and he was gone. I do regret that we left Sinbad their for them to dispose of the body. We should have taken him home and buried him in the back yard. When we got home mom was really upset and cried a lot... she really loved Sinbad... Sinbad was very good for the Cox family and for mom.
From Bonnie - Sinbad always came to our house to visit when Mom and Dad would go on vacation. I would hear something at the front door and he would standing there. I'd invite him in and give him lots of hugs and then he would lay down and nap for awhile.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Boy Scouts

I really enjoyed Boy Scouts as a kid. I waited to get into Boy Scouts because I didn’t like the Scout Master, who I thought was just mean. In reality he was probably was ok, it was his boys who were mean. The year he quit was the last year that they had a major trip for Scouts in Edinburg. They went to Canada that year. Well, Harold Edwards, who lived across the street from us took over, and his two boys Gary and Curt were also going to be in Scouts. The first couple of years was just getting to know the handbook and have fun. For some reason Harold wanted me to learn how to do the planning for the camp outs. Harold would walk me through the process of identifying what we needed and make check-off lists so that I would not forget anything.

How many days would we be gone
How may boy and adults would be going
What the menu would be each day
How much water we would need
How many tents, Supplies , Cooking utensils
The list seemed to go on and on.

Harold would then teach me how much food to expect each person to consume by meal, and then to add all that up for the finial shopping list. We also had a budget to follow, so there was lots of hot dogs and hamburgers on the menu. I would then go to the store with him and help him get all the supplies. This was a great learning experience for me.

All the boy scout tents and camping material was store at the refreshment stand over at the high school diamond.

Most of the camp outs were at Star Bridge going out to Lake Sangchris, not to far from that great big pile of stones that was from when they replaced the old bridge.

Boy Scouts was great.. There are a lot of stories about Boy Scouts.

My Experience with the Secret Service.
Sneaking into town.
The running nose and breakfast.
Bob Lebshire - New Scout Master.

Monday, July 6, 2009

The Mummy

I remember being at Aunt Alma’s house, on Elliott Ave, when I was very young and Daddy coming to see us kids. I can’t remember if the four of us were staying there or if we were staying somewhere else. When daddy came to see us he reminded me of the Mummy from the old pictures. All covered in bandages. Someone told me when I was older that Daddy had been electrocuted and burnt badly while working in the mine. I do remember that it really scared me. Years later Daddy did tell me that he lost all his teeth from the electricity killing the nerves in the teeth.

From Bonnie - Daddy was hurt when dynamite blew up in his face. All us kids stayed at Aunt Alma's house because mom was in the hospital. Daddy was electrocuted another time... Daddy came to see us at Aunt Alma's and that is when John saw him looking like a mummy.

Thanks Bonnie... Love brother John

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Why I'm Not a Coal Miner

Grand Pa Cox was a miner, daddy was a miner, why wasn't John a miner.

I graduated from high school in June of 1971. Peabody Coal Mine number 10 in Pawnee was going full blast. I thought that this would be a great place to work and make a lot of money. So that first week of June 1971 I told daddy that I was going to apply for a job at #10. I must have been crazy, I knew that daddy had been hurt at the mines and that it was dangerous. I guess it was the money that made me forget all the bad things about working in the mines. He told me that he would talk to the front office and I should go over later in the week to apply. I went over and got to meet the head man and talk to him about a job. He said that daddy had talked to him and they would have me fill out an application. He said that they were not hiring anyone that week. He told me to check back each week. I went twice a week all summer long. I had friends that got jobs over the summer. Each time they said that they had just hired someone. By the end of summer I was tired of going over and not getting hired. Daddy told me it was all timing, I just wasn't there at the right time.

Several years later, after I got a job at the Secretary of States office as a computer operator, daddy told me that he had told them not to hire me. He did not want me to work in the mines. That was one of those times that a child and parent have a special moment. Parents sometimes have to make "life changing" decisions for their children.

Evey friend that got a job that summer got seriously hurt working in the mine. Daddy did know best...

I have always wondered how much influence Mom had in that decision.

Computers have been very good to me....

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Mom's Fried Potatoes

I loved mom's fried potatoes! I took what I saw her do and started frying my own. I leave out the onions when I make them... Mom loved onions.

Name of Recipe: John’s Fried Potatoes


10 medium red potatoes (enough to fill frying pan)
1/3 cup vegetable oil
Onions (optional)


You will need a large frying pan with a tight lid. Remove skins of potatoes. Cut potatoes into medium cubs and place in a bowl. Do not soak the potatoes in water. Place frying pan on burner and set heat on medium. Let pan heat up. Do not add oil to a cold pan. Add oil to pan and let oil heat up. Carefully add potatoes to pan. Optional: Add onions, salt and pepper to taste.

Turn potatoes until all are thoroughly coated with oil. Cover and let cook. Check every 3 or 4 minutes and turn potatoes. Remove lid when potatoes start to turn brown. Finishing cooking with lid removed. Drain potatoes on paper towels and serve hot.

Note: You do not need a large amount of oil, just enough that when you turn the potatoes they have a thin coat of oil over their surface.

Video Quality is bad, but this one has video of mom cooking.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Daddy Drove Ramblers

Daddy drove Ramblers to work each day when I was a kid. I remember going with daddy to look at Ramblers that had been wrecked or didn’t run. He would buy two or three of these cars and then proceed to make one car out of two or three. Daddy had a routine. He came home from work, ate, and then he would go to the garage (which he built) and work on building his car. Sometimes these cars were a patch work of seats, door side panels and colors. Once daddy got the car working he would start driving it to work. I have no idea how many Rambler he went through. I do know that I used to drive one of the Ramblers when I started driving.... I would wreck one and he would fix it.... He always had spare parts.

Daddy told me when I was an adult that he couldn’t work on cars as a young man. He said that Grandpa Cox (Bill) never really showed him anything about cars. He said that when he was a young man he bought a car, and in Grandpa Cox’s garage in Auburn, he took the car completely apart and put it back together. Daddy said that when he said take it apart, he meant that he took everything apart down to the smallest part. He took the engine and transmission apart. He took the electrical system out of the car... Then he put it back together. He told me that he did this three times to the car. Lots of trial and error to get it right, but after he was done, he knew how cars worked. He said this helped him understand how other things worked. Daddy was a very determined type of person. Daddy was an amazing man.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Uncle Bill

This picture was take around 1961.

The earliest memories I have of Uncle Bill were from the time he was going to College to become a Chiropractor. Uncle Bill would come to our house and spend the summers and stay in the little room off the kitchen. Mom and Daddy would have discussion on how to help Uncle Bill during his stays with us. Helping her brother made mom very happy

I remember him building his first office in Edinburg. It was across the street from his last office in Edinburg. I remember going over there with Daddy and him and them building the different rooms. Uncle Bill would put quarters on the floor for me to find . . . I thought that I was rich. A quarter was a lot back then. Funny how the little things like that stick with a kid.

I remember all the Thanksgivings at Uncle Bills and Aunt Jan’s house in Edinburg. I thought that the house was huge and they had that little pool table. I think they called it Bumper pool. All of us spent hours playing pool. There were a whole lot of years of fun.

Uncle Bill used to come over to the house, Daddy would get the kitchen chairs out, line them up, and then Uncle Bill would adjust us, and then Daddy would adjust Uncle Bill. There were adjustments that Uncle Bill taught Daddy. I always thought that watching Daddy adjust Uncle Bill was neat.

I remember mom always being concerned about Uncle Bill. She did love her brother very much.

I remember going over to Uncle Bills office and reading his medical book. It was then that I understood how difficult it was to become a Chiropractor. I really didn’t understand that Uncle Bill had to know what a medical Doctor knew about the body.

During my senior year in high school, I had a friend that was having some medical issues and did not want to go to his mom and day about it. I recommended that he call Uncle Bill. Uncle Bill got him to talk to his parents and also took care of his medical issue. It was a minor issue, but a major thing for a teenager. I remember him telling me how understanding Uncle Bill was and that he was surprised that Uncle Bill knew exactly what was wrong and how to fix the problem.

A couple of years ago, Vicky and I stopped to eat in Bloomington. The waitress asked where we were from, we said Sherman, but I had to tell her that I grew up in God’s Country (Edinburg). She said that she grew up in Stonington and that her whole family used to go to Edinburg to see Doc Durham . . . I told her that Doc Durham was my Uncle. She then told us this story. When she was young, her mom had a baby boy and the boy was not doing well after the delivery and was not expected to live. The Doctors had given up . . . but her mom asked if they could have Uncle Bill come and see the baby. Surprisingly, the Doctors and Hospital said yes. She does not know what Uncle Bill did, but he came in, worked on the little boy and left. Almost immediately the baby got better and survived. Years later her bother again got sick. Doctors had given up hope. Her mom again asked Uncle Bill to come to the hospital and again the young man got better and was doing fine. An amazing story. Think of the thousands of stories that people could share about Uncle Bill and how he helped them during extreme difficulties.

I have more to write about Uncle Bill, but that will come with a later Blog.

Monday, June 29, 2009


I saw this and liked it.. I changed it a little....
I am an American.
I am a Christian and believe in God.
I believe in American products.
I believe the money I make belongs to me and my family.
I believe that owning a gun doesn't make you a killer, it makes you a smart American.
I believe that if you are selling me a Big Mac, do it in English.
I believe you have the right to pray to your God when and where you want to.
My heroes are my dad, Ronald Reagan, Rush, Hannity and O’Reilly, because they stand for what makes America great.
I don't hate the rich. I don't pity the poor.
I'm proud that 'God' is written on my money.
I believe that it takes two parents to raise a child.
I believe that we should support our troops.
I believe that we need to pray for our government.
I believe that marriage is between a man and a woman.. I have no problem with legal unions.
I believe in the the American flag
I Believe that we need God back in our Country.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

The State Fair

I went to my first Illinois State fair in 1952, when I was just two months old. My mom said that I enjoyed the fair. I must of, I have been to the fair every year since that first one.

My earliest memories of the fair are from the late 1950's. Each year my mom and my three sisters would go to my Aunt Alma Rees’s house on Elliott Ave in Springfield. We would meet our other aunts and cousins (Reeses, Hopwoods, Durhams) for a day at the fair. I remember going to each of my older cousins and them all giving me a dollar to spend at the fair. I had a lot of cousins and they were the greatest. We would all go to the fair when it opened and spend the morning having a great time. At noon everyone would met for lunch. My mom and aunts would bring a picnic lunch that included fried chicken, potato salad and all the trimming. They would feed us on the hill by where the Ethnic Village is now. We did this for years and I will always remember how much fun I had at the fair and the special times I got to spend with my mom, sisters, cousins and aunts. Each year that I am at the fair is different, but always enjoyable. I can’t imagine missing a fair.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Everything I know about WAR I learned from my dad

My dad fought in WWII, he was a medic with the Second Armor Division and was involved with every major campaign in Africa, Italy, Sicily and Europe. Daddy talked about the war a lot, said young men needed to know what it was really like. He said it was horrible. Working as a medic during battles, then in the field hospitals afterwards, he personally saw hundreds of young American and German men die. He saw thousands that had been killed. Daddy told me that once he saw the remains of 600 to 800 Germans that had been killed in battle. He said that they used bulldozers to bury the men. He said that they would bring the prisoners into the field hospital to get fixed up and then, if they did not have time to take them to rear, the guards shot the Prisoners. This made my dad very mad... My dad had the rare opportunity to talk to many German prisoners and was amazed at how many spoke fluent English and had been educated in the United States. On several occasions he worked with German Medics to help retrieve wounded Germans and they would help him with the wondered Americans. My dad told me these simple truths about war and I think they still apply. War is sometimes necessary; Solders need the support of the folks back home; War is about sacrifices and suffering; There is a difference between killing and murder; There are no plans after the fighting starts; Know your enemy; Politicians and reporters cause many deaths; Civilians get killed; friends die. My dad had the opportunity to go on to medical school after the War, but he didn’t. He told me that he couldn’t take any more suffering, he had seen a lifetime of suffering during the War. He worked as a coal miner until he died and they called him Doc Cox (that is another story).