Blog Archives

 

The Most Difficult Part of This Job

Less than two hours after landing in Monrovia, Liberia, a land that had been devastated by civil war, I stood in the pulpit of Second Providence Baptist Church in 1995 to preach a sermon. As I looked into the faces of people that had waited three hours for us to... read more

Recognizing Those Behind the Scenes

Every year the Jefferson City Schools begin the year by inviting the community to a breakfast, which is followed by a gathering in the Performing Arts Center.  The community joins the faculty, administration, and the school board, in a pep rally of sorts. Dr. John... read more

There is No Greater Love: A Memorial Day Tribute

Memorial Day is a day to honor men and women who went into battle but did not survive. With their lives, they paid the ultimate price. The late U.S. Army General Norman Schwarzkopf once said, “It doesn’t take a hero to order men into battle. It takes a... read more

Looking for Tom

Turkey Season.  Opening Morning.  Temperature 56 degrees.  Overcast.   The alarm went off at 4:00 A.M., three hours before sunrise. My son John and I got our gear together and we ate breakfast on the go.  We drove to a Wildlife Management Area (WMA) “destination... read more

Are You Listening?

On a recent early morning walk in the woods, I was captivated by the sounds around me.  The frost-covered rye grass crunched beneath my feet.  The wind swished through the loblolly pines.  The crows “cawed” to each other in a language only they understand. We would... read more

Looking to the Amish for a Lesson in Humility

Last October Tina and I vacationed in Maine. For three days, we stayed on a working Amish farm. I learned that the Amish dress alike because it provides less opportunity for vanity.  If everyone is wearing the same thing, no one worries about how much to spend for... read more

What Charlie Brown and Linus Teach Us About Christmas

As a boy, I looked forward to all the Charlie Brown specials the way an astronomer looks for the return of comets. Charles Schulz knew how to pull empathy from us as we rooted for Charlie Brown to win at least one baseball game.  This natural born loser had children... read more

Making Room for the God’s Spirit

December 11 Most of us are busy, especially this time of the year.   In addition to work, school, family, church, sports, the time we volunteer, and sleep, there’s parties, shopping, decorating, and lots more stress. But even then our days are not full. We might tell... read more

Coulrophobia Has Me in a Tizzy

I doubt I will ever play this fool again, Tizzy, my alter ego.  Even before the recent insane outbreak of scary clowns that have terrorized children across the country, coulrophobia has been on the rise, mainly because of the use of clowns in a deranged way in movies,... read more

Life Lessons from Jose Fernandez’ Death

This week the Florida Marlins and major league baseball lost two-time All-Star and 2013 Rookie Pitcher of the Year, Jose Fernandez, who was killed along with two friends in a night-time boating accident in Miami. Sportswriter Tom Verducci said that Fernandez is the... read more

Tractor and Implements Donated to Ricks Institute

After a decade of faithful giving, enough money was saved to buy a Mahindra Max 24 4WD HST tractor and three implements for Ricks Institute, a 700-student Baptist school 16 miles outside Monrovia, Liberia.  The purchase was made through The Bricks for Ricks... read more

Our Work is About the Stewardship of Our Gifts

According to one recent report, one in twenty Americans lost their job in the last five years.  Imagine what the percentages are over a lifetime. Yet most think this will never happen to us.  We don’t think our company will close, downsize, or move jobs overseas.  We... read more

Boudia and Johnson Find an Identity Outside of Diving

During the Olympic opening ceremonies 205 countries and two independent teams participated in the parade of nations. Teams were identified by their national flags, colors, and distinctive uniforms. Rio is awash in jerseys, uniforms, flags, t-shirts, hats, and pins... read more

Pedaling Through Life Alone Leads to More Burnout

August 8, 2016 Here’s a life lesson from the Cycling Road Race at the Olympics in Rio De Janeiro–“Trust Others, Work Together, Reap Results.” Rafal Majka of Poland (men’s event) and Mara Abbott of the United States (women’s event)... read more

Meet Dr. Dolittle’s Cousin – The Tomato Man

What if you could talk to the animals like Dr. Dolittle? Which language would you learn: elephant, eagle, buffalo, beagle?  How about alligator, guinea pig, or flea? Recently, I spent some time with Dr. Dolittle’s cousin who knows how to speak to both the animals and... read more

Chandler Lanier Told His Story Forrest Gump Style

On the short list of many people’s favorite movies is “Forrest Gump.” Savannah, Georgia already had a storied history before the filming of this movie. The movie added to tourists’ favorite places for pictures, like Chippewa Square and the... read more

Georgia Baptist Pastors Tempted With Reach for Power

A huge billboard in South Georgia in Senator Josh McKoon’s district bears witness of Georgia Baptist Convention money being spent for his support of “religious liberty” legislation. Governor Nathan Deal, a Baptist, wisely vetoed the legislation. Much more will be... read more

Haley Exposed My Roots Too

Alex Haley’s miniseries “Roots” in 1977 was my first understanding of family systems on a macro level. I certainly would not have used the term “family systems” in the ninth grade, but I knew that Roots was about my family system as much as it was about the roots of... read more

  God is Great at Connecting the Dots

Jesse and Jessica Phillips have not even reached their mid twenties. They have been married less than three years. Yet they have set out on an adventure that has taken them far away from their New Sharon, Iowa home.  They are now missionaries in Africa. Many people... read more

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