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An elderly couple living in a retirement center “got sweet” on each other. One day, the man asked the lady to marry him. A few days later, he approached her, stating that he knew he had asked her an important question but had forgotten what it was. He wondered if she remembered what he had a…

What a wonderful and terrible honor to write the minister’s column on Christmas Day. “Congratulations, pastor, you get to summarize Christmas for the community in 650 words or less.” (Don’t count — I’m over by 33 words.) Alas, I fear that I have neither the space nor the skill to produce the…

“In those days and at that time, I will make a righteous Branch sprout from David’s line; he will do what is just and right in the land. (Jeremiah 33:15 NIV)

Cicero, a Roman philosopher who lived in the first century B.C., stated that gratitude is not only the greatest virtue but also the source from which all other virtues flow. Being that Thanksgiving Day is just around the corner for those of us who live in the United States, it is probably ap…

I think that everyone would agree that we have been through and continue to journey through a brutal political season as a nation. We are divided by Red, Blue, Republican, Democrat, Conservative and Liberal. People are on edge as they believe the future of our nation rests on the policies of…

As COVID-19 continues its upward trend across the country, we continue to try to understand and manage this terrible virus. And many people, understandably, continue to wonder about God’s role in this painful, frightening crisis. What question in all of Christian theology has been more widel…

“I will be your God throughout your lifetime — until your hair is white with age. I made you, and I will care for you. I will carry you along and save you.” — Isaiah 46:4 NLT

A number of years ago, I had the opportunity to be the guest preacher at the historic First Christian Church in Knoxville, Tennessee. Their former pastor had retired and as the church was searching for a new one, they invited pastors from around the city to visit on Sunday mornings and fill …

In the weeks following 9/11, churches across the country experienced a surge in attendance. Prayer vigils gathered the flocks to offer a place for the peaceful assurance of God’s presence. People comforted one another in their common grief. It was a shining moment of what a church provides i…

During this life of mine, I have experienced many challenges and even threats to my very existence. As my ancestors would say, “I’ve been sometimes up, I’ve been sometimes down, and I’ve been sometimes almost level to the ground.” In other words, I know what it means to face death and to sur…

Guess where the following words are found: “You high-minded fool! No one is as arrogant and stupid as you are. May the curses of the gods descend upon you and settle around your feet, tripping you up as you stumble through your miserable life!” Hopefully, nowhere. I made them up.

I was told many years ago that people like the back of the church, the front of the bus and the middle of the road. Yesterday, I met one of those middle-of-the-road drivers and we narrowly missed a head-on collision. Let me be clear, I believe when it comes to driving our automobiles, we nee…

In the past few months, we have been reminded in painful ways that we still have work to do — prayer work and practical work — in the area of racial justice and equity. In the past few months, we have been consumed by a pandemic which has brought sickness, death, fear, and isolation. During …

“If you are pleased with me, teach me your ways so I may know you and continue to find favor with you. Remember that this nation is your people. The Lord replied, ‘My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest’. Then Moses said to him, ‘If your Presence does not go with us, do not s…

What a spring and summer it has been! Who would have thought it? COVID-19, plus the civil unrest afflicting our nation. What’s a body to do? What is a Christian to do? Let’s tackle both issues from one Christian perspective. Not the only one, but one.

Read through the paper. Watch the 24-hour news networks. Tune your radio onto talk radio. What do you read, see and hear? Cities being torn apart by rioting. The American flag and the Holy Bible are being burned in streets. Efforts to defund the men and women in uniform who protect and serve…

This summer, I have been preaching through the life of Joseph at my church. We recently read the text where Joseph is summoned by Pharaoh. For two years, Joseph has been in prison on false charges. Before that, Joseph was sold into slavery by his own family. Had I been through even part of w…

Has anyone ever wronged you? Has anyone ever hurt you deeply or superficially; intentionally or unintentionally? Do you still carry around the scar? Now let me ask another set of questions.

Does the fact that you are a Christian make any difference? Does it change the way you interact with the world? Does it affect how you perceive your neighbor? Right now, there is a lot of conversation around the protests across our country. Some want to join in. Some want them to go away. Th…