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Monday, Sep. 22, 2014
Posted Friday, September 19, at 1:17 PM
It had been a long day--actually a long series of long days. All the company from the weekend had returned to their homes. She was straightening things up, trying to get back to the normal routine. She had gathered the things that need to go to the upper story of the house and was about to go indulge in a long soak in the tub when the phone rang...

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The Power of Love
Posted Friday, September 12, at 10:01 AM

The day had finally arrived. People were gathering from far and near to celebrate the power of love and God's calling. Hugs and greeting abounded as people met with open arms--sharing the joy of the day. All was ready. Everyone arrived. It was time--after ten long years, it was time...

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Posted Friday, August 29, at 8:52 AM

A confrontation ends in violence. One person dead and others lives is in ruins. Accusations, angry demonstration, screaming, fighting break out. A young man in his prime lost. Facts no longer matter. Truth is obscured, ignored, and suffers as no one pays attention. Emotions run high. The crowd in whipped into a frenzy of thoughtless action. Violence erupts. Hatred reigns...

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Posted Friday, August 22, at 10:10 PM

There was once a group of college students who were travelling. They had two whole weeks away from school to go from place to place, singing and sharing their stories with the people they met along the way. They had great experiences. . . and fun as well. ...

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Posted Friday, August 8, at 1:36 PM

The days and nights had been filled with activities. Setting up a new house was daunting to say the least. Unpacking was time consuming--and painful. By the end of the day every bone in her body screamed for relief. Her joints burned as pain radiated through them into every part of her body. Taking a break, she moved into a chair to rest. She elevated her feet and reclined, trying to find one spot where she didn't hurt--an impossible task...

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Wonder and Awe
Posted Friday, August 1, at 4:12 PM

The children had all gathered round the story teller who held a small brown animal on her lap. It sat there quietly, filling her lap as she stroked its fur. His head was tucked slightly under her arm as if he were shy or unsure of his greeting by the children. As she spoke to the children, he tentatively looked out from under her arm...

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Taco Bed
Posted Friday, July 25, at 10:06 AM

It was her first night in her new house. Not all of the furniture had arrived yet, but she had an old roll-away bed that had been bought from a hotel years before that she could sleep on until her bed arrived. Normally her home was filled with people and animals, but this particular night, it was just her in the big, two-story, nearly one hundred-year-old home...

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Exotic Beauty
Posted Friday, July 18, at 10:08 AM

Exotic Beauty By Rayla Stewart Hogue Special to the Daily Statesman The gondola had arrived. It was our turn to step in with our group and begin our journey through the rain forest. The small metal cage seated only the six of us and was open to the elements. This morning the rain had lingered, however the foliage of the trees was so thick that it was more mist than rain. They were finally all loaded and settled in the gondola and swung off the loading area into the rain forest...

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Posted Friday, July 11, at 9:39 AM

Running and exploring were the joy of her life. There was nothing better that when mom opened the door of the house to go streaking outside, rushing to the far corner of the yard before turning to run the fence line to the pasture gate, whirling across the open yard to the opposite side and then racing back across the front of the house to climb the hay bales where she was queen of all she surveyed. Oh, the joy of puppy-hood...

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Posted Wednesday, July 2, at 4:38 PM

It was a beautiful afternoon--warm, but not too hot, with a gentle breeze filling the air with the warm smells of the damp earth. The scent of freshly mown grass and flowers in bloom tantalized him. He was slowly moving through the pasture nipping tender fresh grass along the way...

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Posted Friday, June 27, at 9:32 AM

Coming home from work, they let the dogs out to go take care of their business. It was a beautiful day and the girls were running, leaping, and playing as they raced across the yard. Bandita caught sight of a squirrel. Chasing it she ran it up a tree while she raced onto trailer near the tree. Climbing up it she stood at point--watching the squirrel as it chattered at her from the safety of the tree...

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Standing in the Shadows
Posted Saturday, June 21, at 10:29 AM

Stepping onto the stage she was terrified. Her preparations were complete. Rehearsal had gone as well as could be, yet . . . insecurities plagued her. "God, be my voice," she whispered as she picked up the mic. The music began and God's gift poured out...

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Shrouded in Mystery
Posted Friday, June 13, at 11:37 PM

Early summer mornings were amazing. She walked out onto the deck into the delicious upper 50s and slightly damp morning. Ground fog rose across the land from the moisture left behind after the recent rains. The rolling hills of the plains of were swaddled in ethereal beauty--misty white rising and dissipating in warming rays of the sun...

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Walking Wounded
Posted Friday, June 6, at 9:13 AM

Her day was filled with errands and appointments. Throughout the day she encountered so many interesting people along the way. Some she knew . . . some she didn't. Rarely a "shy" person she had brief conversations with people throughout the day. Yet as the day progressed she was tired and a little less eager to engage in conversation. Thoughts from the conversations with the doctors filled her mind and she just needed some quiet time to think...

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Through a Glass Darkly
Posted Friday, May 30, at 10:54 AM

He raced across the room, leaping into the chair, coming to an immediate stop. Every fiber of his being was on high alert. Watching with laser attentiveness, he stalked his prey. Without warning he pounced into action, seemingly flying up the back of the chair, up the curtain, paws outstretched, certain of capturing the bird...

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Liquid Ooze
Posted Friday, May 23, at 8:46 AM

Spring is alive and well. The dogs come into the house and scratch. The cats scratch. Tiny dots move through their fur--fleas. Not wanting to allow the fleas to breed, yet know once they are notice it is too late, she went to the local pet store and got flea/tick treatment for all the animals. Once one flea has entered the premises--they must all DIE...

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Got a Match?
Posted Friday, May 16, at 9:17 AM

His baby brother was getting married. Married? MARRIED! It was hard to believe. The squirt wasn't even 21, but he was tying the knot. As best man it was his job to make sure he got to the church, in the right clothes and at the right time. After all, his soon-to-be sister-in-law would kill them if they messed up...

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Watch Your Step
Posted Friday, May 9, at 8:15 AM

He loved visiting the neighbors. Stopping by the barn had become part of his daily routine. Some days there were mice to stalk and catch, but most of the time he just enjoyed hanging out with the horses and cleaning up the bits of grain they dropped as they ate. ...

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I Don't Want to Love You!
Posted Friday, May 2, at 7:46 PM

"I can't believe you! I'm gone four hours and you couldn't wait! You promised you would just look! Now what do I find, but she's here with you! I can't trust you!" "But honey, I didn't have the heart to turn her away after I saw her. The moment she got out of the car, she came straight to me and sat on my feet. Then she looked up at me with those eyes . . . I just couldn't resist her."...

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Posted Friday, April 25, at 9:20 PM

She had been grading tests all day. By the time she was ready for sleep that night she was tired of reading about ants. Trying to still her exhausted mind she finally managed to quiet her thoughts by counting sheep--ants--no sheep that scurried about. Finally sleep came...

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From My Heart to Yours
Rayla Stewart Hogue
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Rayla Stewart Hogue is a native of Dexter. She is a wife, mother, and minister of the UCC (United Church of Christ). She seeks to recognize and embrace the unending hues of God's ethne and religion, and commits herself to living and expressing this inclusive diversity through Sacrament and the spoken, written, and sung Word of God.
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