Rain

I left my coat in the car that day. When I arrived at the office, the sky was overcast but it did not look like rain. The clouds darkened and during the day. “I need to go outside and get my coat,” I thought more than once. But by the time I stepped outside, it…

Meeting God in a Friend

The strangest circumstance occurred. The board meeting I was booked to attend in Nashville got moved to Ada, OK. It also changed so just the executive committee needed to attend. The rest were to attend via zoom. Technically, then, I could have canceled the trip and stayed home. But, I was scheduled to stay with…

Learning Anatomy

Amazing how we live in these bodies which are perfectly formed and serve us well for so many years, and can know relatively little about them. Only when there are injuries, or pain, do we learn more. I had friends who had torn their rotator cuffs over the years, but still knew little about this…

My God Sighting

Plants burned. Some folk put potatoes in their trunks and baked them. Another guy wired a hot dog to his antenna and it roasted. It was a record-breaking heat wave. I took a four-mile walk with a good friend in the 114F temperatures. I felt like the hot dog! My car was not pleased with…

God Has Brought You Here

On May 18th, I texted our daughter, “Grace, I just received some info on doctor I was planning to start with, which raised questions about him from interns who had worked with him. Could you pray and give me any guidance you might have?” (Grace is our second daughter.) It was just six days before…

“I wanted to punch your lights out!”

1988. My first pastorate in San Jacinto, California. The church statistics in the Annual Conference Journal said there were 166 members. It felt like a daunting step from seminary and my student pastorate into my first church. When I arrived I discovered the difference between stats and reality. The previous pastors had not done an…

Brokenness Isn’t An Ending

Everyone asks when they hear about the injury, “How did you do that?” I have a torn rotator cuff — the supraspinatus tendon and a labral tear. I’ve learned more about shoulder anatomy as a result. But I don’t have a single answer to the question. Several falls, the most recent in November while cross-country…

Such a Hike

Monday, March 22nd, was my birthday! Hey, thanks for the birthday greetings!! The day comes yearly, and even though my body is aging, inside I don’t feel one iota different. Perhaps this is the whole scriptural picture of “the inward man being renewed day by day” (2 Corinthians 4:16). I easily forget that now I…

To Access the Heart

I have always been impacted by the verse in Deuteronomy 8. Remember how Moses said to Israel on the shores of the Jordan across from Jericho, “And you shall remember that the Lord your God led you all the way these forty years in the wilderness, to humble you and test you, to know what…

Hello, My Name is Phillip: Chapter Nineteen

(This is the serial release of my book Hello, My Name is Phillip. You are welcome to share these posts with friends, and welcome also to buy the book here. The story picks up as Phillip eavesdrops on an important conversation.) It is Mr. Clay, from the church. He stands there, smiling that wide grin…