Thanking by Thinking

Happy Thanksgiving from Joe

  “Blow, blow thou winter wind, Thou art not so unkind as Man’s ingratitude. Freeze, freeze thou bitter sky. Thou dost not bite so nigh as benefits forgot.” -Shakespeare "Bless the Lord oh my soul", David said, "and forget not all is benefits." (Psalm 103:2) Continue Reading

Facing the Fire


“Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire ---” I Corinthians 3: 11-13 Any Christian feeling a call to service should get a good grasp on the concept of stewardship. Continue Reading

Surveying the Damage


I’m somewhat OK with admitting my sin. It's clearly not my favorite thing to do, but I will if I have to. Examining its impact is another matter. Continue Reading



There are many men who have much less than me, Day by day, they make their way And they find more in life than I can see Tell me when will I learn to resist wanting things, Touching things that say, ‘Do not touch’ -“Wanting Things” from the musical “Promises, Promises” It’s a cruel fact of life in this fallen world that we want more than (and other than) what we really need. Continue Reading

Good Grief


“Nobody wants to be good at grieving – we are half afraid that having such a skill would only attract more grief. But because you will not be spared from times of loss, it is important to believe that your grief has a purpose.” -Bob Deits, Recovering After Loss I’m a loser. I’m losing hair, strength, eyesight, patience. With each loss comes a degree of irritable sadness and a little amusement at the whole 50’s-60’s season of aging. It’s a loading platform at biology’s depot. The Still Young bus has left but the Medicare line hasn’t arrived Continue Reading

The Walking Wounded

Walking Wounded

“Without your wound where would your power be? The very angels themselves cannot persuade the wretched and blundering children on earth as can one human being broken on the wheels of living. In love’s service only the wounded soldiers can serve.” -Thornton Wilder Now I see why I always cry at the end of Our Town. Thornton Wilder had a grasp on language and the human soul which leaves me flabbergasted. And he’s bringing up something in this quote I’ve thought over for years, and have reluctantly come to believe: my best qualities spring Continue Reading

Beware the Grudge


A happy marriage is the union of two good forgivers. ~ Ruth Bell Graham Even on the best of football teams,  fumbles happen. Continue Reading

In Search of Stability


“Unstable as water, you shall not excel.” -Genesis 49:4 When Jacob was dying, he called his sons together for blessings and predictions. He began with his firstborn Reuben, who should have received double inheritance and assumed spiritual headship of the family once his father passed. Recognizing his great potential, Jacob declared “You are my might, the beginning of my strength, the excellency of dignity and the excellency of power.” Continue Reading

The Conservative Dinosaur

Dinasour Con

Come, come, my conservative friend, wipe the dew off your spectacles, and see that the world is moving. -Elizabeth Cady Stanton A woman stomped up to me after I’d spoken to a church a few years ago, stuck her finger in my face and hissed, “Your days are numbered!” I’d just preached on the sanctity of life and the definition of marriage and family, all of which, she predicted, were beliefs soon to exit America’s value system. “Your time is over” she repeated several times, identifying herself as a committed liberal Christian whose Continue Reading

Releasing Your Wounder


We’ve all got them – wounds, past injuries of the soul that still show themselves, either in the way we relate, or the pain we feel. I've learned a lot by examining my own, and those of the people I've been blessed to work with over the years. Continue Reading