Good Evening Friends,

I know you haven’t heard from me on the blog for a couple of months. Now you are getting post with a different name on it. At the moment my available time is going to building a web page for my church and another that will webpage that will be the new home of Compass Ministries. I hope to finish with the church page in the next week or two and will probably start doing something creative again once I complete that project.

If you remember back to last summer, particularly late June or early July I asked several people to write a guest post for the blog while I was focusing on moving. One of the people I asked, was my brother-in-law, Jimmy Oquin. I really appreciated Jimmy’s words in that post. Some of you shared with me that you also felt moved by Jimmy’s writing.

Sadly, I write tonight to share with you that Jimmy passed away early this morning from Covid 19. After going into the hospital, Jimmy asked for something. It was the first time I heard of this but I do like it. He asked us to send him Bible Scriptures affirming God is in control. I sent him a few from Romans 8, my favorite chapter of the Bible.

I decided today that, in memory of my brother-in-law, Jimmy, I would share again, his very well-done post, “Crying.” I post it tonight exactly as we presented it back in June, including to note at the beginning of the post.

Keith’s Note: I have known James “Jimmy” Oquinn for about 43 or 44 years. I have always known Jimmy to be a man high ideals and sound ethical and spiritual ideals. He and his wife Cindy have done much in the life of their church including what I believe is, if not the most thankless job in the life of the church, it is in the top five, youth ministry. But what I also know is, in that youth work, over several years, God gave them the opportunity to touch the lives of many young people. I know they felt blessed in that work, because Jimmy and Cindy (known to us as CJ) are not just friends, Jimmy and CJ are my brother-in-law and sister-in-law. Jimmy is my Cindy’s oldest brother. For a few months, before Cindy and I got married but after they did, there were two people around the family dinner table named Cindy Oquinn. Oh that was so much fun (he says in words dripping with sarcasm). Jimmy and CJ are members at First Baptist Church in Pasadena, Texas. Enjoy a few words from my friend and brother-in-law, Jimmy Oquinn.

(A note before we start: I currently study from the HCSB (Holman Christian Standard Bible). I use a variety of English translations and will be paraphrasing scripture. Please look up the scripture references in your favorite translation.)

Hannah got up after they ate and drank at Shiloh. Eli the priest was sitting on a chair by the doorpost of the Lord’s tabernacle. 10 Deeply hurt, Hannah prayed to the Lord and wept with many tears. 11 Making a vow, she pleaded, “Lord of Hosts, if You will take notice of Your servant’s affliction, remember and not forget me, and give Your servant a son, I will give him to the Lord all the days of his life, and his hair will never be cut.”

12 While she continued praying in the Lord’s presence, Eli watched her lips. 13 Hannah was praying silently, and though her lips were moving, her voice could not be heard. Eli thought she was drunk 14 and scolded her, “How long are you going to be drunk? Get rid of your wine!”

15 “No, my lord,” Hannah replied. “I am a woman with a broken heart. I haven’t had any wine or beer; I’ve been pouring out my heart before the Lord. 16 Don’t think of me as a wicked woman; I’ve been praying from the depth of my anguish and resentment.”

17 Eli responded, “Go in peace, and may the God of Israel grant the petition you’ve requested from Him.” (1 Samuel 1:9-17, Holman Christian Standard Bible)

I have served in various lay positions throughout my life. God is still working on me- I have a lot to learn. I enjoy sharing my thoughts. I believe Jesus Christ is who He says He is: “…the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” (John 14:6 HCSB). I have no formal theological training. I work scheduling projects for a contractor at refineries, petrochemical plants and power plants.


I like the idea of pondering. Not meditating. Not studying. Pondering. Wandering through the possibilities. What if… 
How did they…
How did this happen… 

Let’s look at 6 people in the Old and New Testaments:

Hannah Hagar Jonah
The Hebrews Jesus Peter

What do they have in common?

They are people, human beings, just like you and me. 

They appear to have little in common. They come from different areas, times, stations in life. Their ages and sexes are varied. Their geo-political backgrounds are different.

What did they do that was ‘good’?

Hannah was a good wife.
Hagar served her mistress well.
Jonah was God’s prophet.
The Hebrews were God’s people.
Peter was Jesus’ disciple.
Jesus is God’s Son.

Good people living their versions of a good life. In 2020, in the USA, we would call it “living the American dream”. So, why were they crying?

Hannah cried as she prayed for a son at the tabernacle. In 1 Samuel Hannah went with her husband, Elkanah, to the tabernacle. The priest, Eli, saw her praying and scolded her for being drunk. Hannah and Eli talked, they parted amicably and in verse 18 of 1 Samuel (HCSB) “…she ate and no longer looked despondent.”.

Hagar cried as she prayed for deliverance for Ishmael and herself in the desert. In Genesis 21 Sarah is jealous of Ishmael and asks Abraham to send Hagar and Ishmael- Abraham’s son- away. Hagar and Ishmael are sent away and Hagar stops in the desert expecting to die. In verse 16 “…she wept loudly.” An angel shows Hagar a water well and the way out of the desert.

Jonah cried out as he prayed from the belly of the fish for forgiveness- a second chance. Jonah ran from God and the job God assigned to him. 

The Hebrews cried out to God for deliverance while in Egypt. 

Peter cried because he was disappointment to his Rabbi and himself. 

Jesus cried for Jerusalem. Jesus is God’s Son. All God and all man. In Luke chapter 19 we find Luke’s account of the triumphal entry followed by Jesus crying. Those Jesus came to save did not recognize nor accept Him- instead they tried to destroy Him. I believe He cried for all humanity- including me.

Each of the people above went through valleys in their lifetimes. Times when life was not as expected. Things did not work out as anticipated. The world was not as it appeared to be. The plan failed. The world was upside down.

Does this sound familiar? Every human will experience disappointment, failure, hardship, sorrow and/or fatigue on the journey we call life. Everyone cries.

They cried for the same reasons we cry. Everyone cries. But they did not just cry. 

They prayed. They called out to God. They waited. They suffered the consequences of their choices and actions.

Then they got up and moved. They acted. 

Hannah ate and cleaned up. 
Hagar followed the angel. 
Jonah preached. 
The Hebrews packed up and moved. 
Jesus followed God’s plan- even though he did not want to (Matthew 22:39).

The good news is the story did not end with crying. 

Hannah had a son, Samuel. Samuel was raised in the tabernacle with Eli and anointed the first king (Saul- 1 Samuel 9 and 10) and second king (David- 1 Samuel 16) of Israel.

Hagar is led by an angel to water. She and Ishmael settled in the Wilderness of Paran, Ishmael’s descendants becoming the Islamic nations. His family is recorded in Genesis 25

Jonah was God’s prophet. When he preached in Nineveh the city repented and was spared from destruction. In Jonah 4, God reminds Jonah how important people are to Him.

The Hebrews were God’s people. The Hebrews originally went into Egypt as Jacob’s family of about seventy people to escape famine in their homeland (Genesis 46 and following chapters). Over the course of four hundred years the Egyptian pharaohs, concerned that the Hebrews would take over the country, enslaved the Hebrews. The Hebrews cried out to God for deliverance in Exodus 2:23. The Hebrews are now known as the nation of Israel.

Peter is Jesus’ disciple. He was part of Jesus’ inner circle. Jesus had even renamed him Cephas, the “Rock”. In the evening Peter tells Jesus that others will deny Him but not Peter, ““Lord,” he told Him, “I’m ready to go with You both to prison and to death!”” (Luke 22:33 HCSB). Before daylight Peter denies Jesus three times. He goes out by himself and cries. (Luke 22:62). Peter wrote part of the Bible as we know it today. Peter ministered in Jerusalem but also traveled to Antioch after Christ’s ascension.

Jesus was triumphantly entering Jerusalem for the Feast of the Passover. The city typically was flooded with the faithful- and the Romans watching. The high priest and Sanhedrin wanted Jesus killed. Jerusalem at Passover appeared to be a festival. Jesus is crucified, dies, is buried and raised again on the third day. Accepting Jesus as Lord and Savior reconciles us to God. We can approach the Throne of God. Jesus is at the right hand of God- interceding for us.

The bottom line here- through my pondering- is a good cry serves its purpose but praying starts the process of getting things done. Wait on God’s timing. Then get up, refocus and move forward. 

The corona virus, travel restrictions, economy, weather, what others think or believe, prejudices or any other deterrents in their respective times and locations did not stop the people above.  If they changed the world so can I.

Seeking the Genuine


Jimmy, it is we who cry, and pray, today. You are gone from us way too soon and you will be missed.

I didn’t know Jimmy his whole life or mine. I can safely say, knowing Jimmy over the past 45 years, I was blessed to have joined a family with such a man of God.

Jimmy was right in much of what he said in this post. There is one thing I might argue just a bit. He said he had no formal theological training. Technically, he spoke the truth. What he didn’t say but should be said, Jimmy was (we should probably say “is”) a man of deep faith in God and in the Church. Jimmy got a solid lay education in the Christian Education program at Golden Acres Baptist Church in Pasadena, Texas where he was a member for much of his life before God led him to make a change and moving to First Baptist in Pasadena a few years ago. He taught Sunday school to children, youth, and most recently adults. He has taken kids to camp and worked as a chaperon. He has worked in a variety of mission work. One of his mission works was tsunami relief in the wester Pacific.

He is one of the most caring and loving people I have ever known. For Jimmy, it all began with his relationship with God and his family. You didn’t need to be around him for long to know he took “The Greatest Commandment” very seriously.

I ask you to please remember his wife C.J., daughter Tori her husband Zach and son Andy his wife Imam, plus grandsons Aubrey and Dietrich. His family, both his immediate family like Cindy, and Jimmy’s two brothers, David and Thomas as well as all the rest of us in-laws, aunts, uncles, cousins. Yes, it is a large family.

For all who considered Jimmy a friend or family member, our lives will not be the same for two reasons. First, having known Jimmy and second, having known Jimmy. Our lives have changed because of having known Jimmy. Getting to know Jimmy and seeing the way he lived his life and all the things he shared with us that made us better. Our lives have been changed having known Jimmy because there will be a hole in our lives because he is no longer with us. And, he will be missed.

The Lord Bless You and Keep You.

Copyright 2021, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

Published by drjkbroyles

I love Mike Ashcraft's book, "My One Word." For the past nine years I have participated and encouraged others to participate to in the "My One Word" Challenge. My first word was discipline was my word the first year. Since then my word has been focus, sight, jungle, peace, concentration, serve, genuine and this year is fit. I seek to be fit for my health, my family, my church, my ministries. I seek to be fit in any are of my life where God might point to me. I also have a nickname, "Dr. B." When I was a public high school teacher, Dr. B. is what most of my students called me, at least in my presence. I am still called that by many people though I no longer teach in public schools. I am the author of "Average Joe: With an Extraordinary Story" (available on Amazon). The book fits into the genre of "Biblical Fiction" or "Christian Fiction" and features some of the Bible's lesser known characters. The name of my blog is, "Fork in the Road." Life is filled with forks in the road. It isn't a matter of if we encounter a fork in the road, but when will we and how many will we experience in a lifetime. I love to strum my guitar. I am not a great guitar player but I enjoy it. I also enjoy writing music. I get excited with I feel a new song emerging. I live with my wife Cindy and our little dog, "Bishop" in Lufkin, Texas. I spent the past 30 years as a United Methodist pastor, serving churches all over east and southeast Texas, from just north of Tyler to south of Houston, from the Gulf Coast to east of Madisonville. I currently serve Perritte Memorial UMC in Nacogdoches. I spent one year in the classroom, teaching High School government, economics, psychology, and sociology. Cindy and I have been married for 43 years. We have two grown sons and six grandchildren, three boys and three girls. I enjoy preaching and all it's aspects from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading. I have dabble in drawing and "painting" with pastels as well as woodworking and woodcarving. My current projects are two ukuleles. I collect, repair and restore guitars too. I play the guitar (badly, but I still do) I also enjoy working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, TX, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. This blog started out as devotional writings. In August of 2020, I made a major change to the blog, switching to a daily theme format. Sunday Sermon-usually my manuscript sermon Miscellaneous Monday-misc. writing, poetry, ministry Tuesday Thoughts-Devotion Wed. with Wesleys-hist. & theol. of early Methodists TED Talk Thursday-Video & appl. in current theology Five for Friday-5 things I've seen & my thoughts Sing-Along Sat. - Usually a new song I have written I write, "Strumming a G-Chord with Dr.B." to get my thoughts onto something permanent. After all, they say, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. Seeking the Genuine, Keith Lufkin, Texas August 2020

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