What Condition My Condition Is In

After the initial shock about the coronavirus (and adapting to restrictions) had passed, I began to be disappointed in some of the reactions of my countrymen in general, and of Christians as well. Yes, I too felt a bit restricted, anxious, fearful. But over the weeks, we’ve been inundated with “helps”: ways to minimize stress tips to conquer severe anxiety…

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Just a Couple of Old Soldiers

It was 1981. My parents were visiting Japan, helping us to build a building. While Dad installed kitchen cabinets, the Japanese tile man, Mr. Narahashi, was installing the Japanese-style bath. (Everybody should have an American kitchen and a Japanese bath!) During a breather, the two men stood drinking coffee. Only the most casual of introductions had been made. (Of course,…

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“Serve Him Till I Die”

older black man

A memory from my teen years flashed into my head, for some reason, and made me look up the old song “I’m on the Battlefield for My Lord.” The back story: I was about 16 and at a teen youth rally. Visiting was a 90-year-old black man (about 4-foot-11!) from a Bible college in Louisville. He stood up in front…

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Happiness vs. “If Only”

Thinker statue

The minister’s sermon was on the Matthew 10:16 idea of  “wise as serpents, innocent as doves.” His focus was how Satan zeroes in on the one thing we crave…and uses it to distance us from the Lord and bring us down. He told of Eve, who couldn’t be happy with all she had—had to have the fruit from that one…

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“How Much to Free the Lady?”

woman holding a cage of birds

A few years ago, I was visiting my daughter in Chiang Mai, Thailand. From the hotel window I spotted a local lady carrying what looked like a big wicker basket, filled with smaller closed baskets. My daughter explained that each little cage contained a sparrow. A Buddhist person could pay 75 cents to set a sparrow free. And this would,…

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