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Showing posts from November, 2023

Thoughts On Wisdom

Dear Friends, Today I offer you gleanings from a book I picked up yesterday (used) at a Thrift Shop – “The Wisdom of the Saints.” I have occasionally told people that if they desire to be wise (a very lacking and much needed virtue these days!) one of the ways to become wise is to read the books of those who were wise. Therefore, I offer you some samples of wisdom sayings by wise saints of the past. Some you will recognize some of their words because they are still spread around today. I picked 20 of my favorites. Enjoy. “Pray as though everything depended on God. Work as if everything depended on you.” St. Augustine (354-430 A.D.) “Nothing can happen to me that God doesn’t want. And all that He wants, no matter how bad it may appear to us, is really for the best… Earth has no sorrow that heaven can’t heal.” Thomas More (1478-1535 A.D.) “The first end I propose in our daily work is to do the will of God; secondly, to do it in the manner He wills it; and thirdly, to do

Thoughts From Thomas Watson

Dear Friends, With Thanksgiving Day almost upon us, and pictures of Pilgrims often still thrown into the mix, I send out this “thought” to try and correct a common yet widespread misconception or generalization that often goes completely unchallenged, even in many churches. It’s the misconception that all Puritans (and Pilgrims were separatist Puritans) were judgmental, hyper-critical, pulpit-pounding preachers, who loved to make their people squirm under their hellfire-and-brimstone sermons depicting an angry God. Not to say there is not a bad apple in each bunch, but interestingly, I've found that overall negative view voiced by people who have never even read one Puritan book in their lives! I don’t have the time or space to go over how that mostly unfair caricature came to take root to the point that it often goes completely unchallenged. That would take a substantial volume! All I can say is that in doing my doctoral dissertation on the Puritans, and reading over 50 of t

Thoughts On Hospitality

Dear Friends, Today’s “thought” has to do with hospitality. It’s a virtue in most cultures. Here in the U.S. the Southern states pride themselves on “Southern Hospitality,” which does seem a bit more pronounced south of the Mason-Dixon line! Yet in many instances I found it even more pronounced in Europe, the Dominican Republic, and Honduras. On one occasion when I served in the Dominican Republic between 1980-1982, we (a crew of 13 American teen boys, two adult men and one lady – 16 in all!) stumbled upon a village of blondish-haired Dominicans while hiking in the “Cordillera Central” – the highest mountain range in the country. I was told later they were descendants of Swedish Immigrants of the late 1860’s who fled the potato famine and gradually intermarried with the Dominicans. Surprised to see us walk into their remote village, they warmly greeted us and asked if they could make lunch for us. When we said “yes,” some of the children promptly chased down a few chickens a

Thoughts From the Hollenbachs

Dear Friends, Today I pass along a “thought” written and sent out by two members of my church (which they do weekly), John and Judy Hollenbach. Their thoughts are all good, but I thought this one was especially good, so I share it with you. It has to do with our need to "see" the need that’s in front of our eyes so we can reach out to minister to that need. Sometimes we truly do not see the need (even when it’s right in front of our eyes) because we are distracted, while other times we do “see” it, and may even be struck by it, yet continue on our way and fail to do anything to alleviate it, because we know the cost of involvement. After all, involvement would add to our already busy schedules, and drain our already stretched-to-the-limit resources. We can pass right by because we know how deeply it will cut into our free time and reduce our special "just for me" fund. That's why (in this world) John and Judy’s thought “Doing or Not Doing” is a needed remin