I’ve been struggling over the past year and a half, trying to get a routine down — to optimize my time and get some real work done. I am essentially self-employed now, even if I’m not earning a living by my efforts. Nearly forty years with the US Postal Service and twenty-four years as a bi-vocational pastor kept me working and focused, so there was an imposed structure to my day with objectives and goals to meet, as well as work to be done. Now, I have to plan my own workday, thankful that years of working for the USPS, Denise’s years of contracting and employment, the generosity of others, and personal planning have provided the financial foundation for labors of love that don’t necessarily pay.… Read the rest “WWGRD? The How and Why of Working”
Well, it’s been over a month since my last post. A few things have conspired to keep me away from writing.
First, a friend of the family was hit by necrotizing fasciitis, the flesh-eating bacteria. It’s so rare, I never thought I would know someone, personally, who would be stalked by this deadly foe. He is a young man, received a timely bit of advice from his pharmacist and a quick diagnosis by his first surgeon and, then, he was off to an excellent hospital. He’s come through with flying colors. Today, he just learned that his grafts had taken very well and he’ll be going home Friday, after a month in the hospital.… Read the rest “Back To The Blog”
Denise has always wanted to visit the garden island of Kauai, in the Hawaiian Islands. So, we flew over earlier this month. I thought I would try paddle-board surfing while we were there and Hanalei Bay is ideally suited for a first timer. However, a day or so before we went north, I put on my fins to swim around Salt Pond Beach Park near Port Allen. When I left the water and pulled off my bootie, I found that the scarring over the tendon at my ankle had torn and I was trailing a lot of blood. This had never happened before while swimming, body-surfing or sponge-riding. … Read the rest “Torn Flesh, Rejoicing, Giving Thanks, and Praying”
I’ve watched boys writhing in the pews and struggling to pay attention for years, as the preacher plows through the text, turning over the soil of the soul. Sometimes the man behind the music stand or pulpit is me.
Other boys get down on their knees, but not to pray. They face a chair with a pencil up and press their noses down close to a piece of paper or a flyer for some church event or a bulletin or a sketch pad, rendering caricatures of superheroes or Transformers or stock cars. Older boys may read an appropriate novel. Some do their homework, while others game away on a device of some kind.… Read the rest “Sermon Notes”
It took nearly twenty years, but my short biography of Richard Baxter is in publication and you can get your hands on a copy of it on at Lewis and Roth, using PayPal, VISA© or MasterCard. It’s only $9.95 and a nominal charge for shipping and handling, so how can you go wrong? Most of my sales have been by money order or personal check and you can find that order form right here.
“Who’s Richard Baxter?” you ask.
The well-known Christian author and authority on the Puritans, J.I. Packer, called him “incomparable” in his zeal and abilities, as well as “…the most outstanding pastor, evangelist and writer on practical and devotional themes that Puritanism produced.”
His detractors called him Scribbling Dick, because he published over 140 works during his lifetime, all the while thinking he would be killed or die by the next Spring.… Read the rest “Buy This Book”
If you ever decide to take a trip to Africa, you need to buy and read this book! If you hope to make friends you will keep in touch with, it’s an absolute necessity. In the West, the minute a friend asks for money, things get weird and the friendship probably won’t last long. In Africa, if there is no exchange of money or resources involved, things will get weird and the friendship probably won’t last long. East is east and west is west and there will be no meeting of the minds on the issue of money (and a lot of other customs) without help from someone like David Maranz, a linguist working in Africa since 1975.… Read the rest “African Friends and Money Matters by David Maranz”
Press Release: Christian Music Singer-Songwriter super-group The Lost Dogs to wander in to Roseville.
On Thursday, September 28th, 2006, Valley Springs Presbyterian Church will host an intimate evening with The Lost Dogs at the Underground Café in Roseville. The Lost Dogs are a collaborative singer-songwriting effort that brings together some of the best musicians from the past 30 years of Christian music. It features the skills of Terry Taylor (of the 1970’s Jesus Movement band Daniel Amos), Derri Daugherty (of both the 1980’s alternative music group The Choir and City on a Hill fame), Mike Roe (of the Sacramento-based college radio favorites The 77’s) and Steve Hindalong (also of The Choir and City on a Hill, as well as the writer of the chart topping worship song, “God of Wonders“).… Read the rest “The Lost Dogs To Wander In To Roseville”
Some time ago I created a website for Scott and Carol Kellermann highlighting their work among the Batwa people. The Batwa are conservation refugees, meaning they were forcibly removed from their ancestral home in the Bwindi Inpenetrable Forest to create a preserve for the mountain gorilla. Scott recently completed a very infomative video, which has been added to the site. Check it out.… Read the rest “Who Are The Batwa?”
My pal Dan reminded me this week that November 12 was the 390th birthday of Richard Baxter. I can’t believe I didn’t have that marked on the calendar. I am known to refer to Baxter as “my old friend, Dick Baxter,” because I feel that I came to know him personally over the past fifteen years.
Back around 1990, a friend asked me to research and write a brief biography of Richard Baxter for his publishing company, highlighting the puritan’s abilities as a pastor and evangelist. He was looking for a book, which could be read in one or two sittings, spurring church leaders on to energetic, effective ministry in their local congregations.… Read the rest “Happy Birthday Dick Baxter!”
Here we are outside Emma’s apartment in Carrboro. She is all settled in and is acclimating to southern living. Chapel Hill and Franklin St. are only about a mile down the road and she is within walking distance of a great little restaurant that specializes in health food: grits, bisquits, red hots and fatback.
After the apartment was moved in and decorated, Emma found it a bit gloomy so she hung a few strings of lights and voila! The place is quite comfortable with reasonable rent, utilities paid, cable and high speed internet are included. Emma, like her mother, can sure shop for a bargain!… Read the rest “Emma's New Life”