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I had a conversation with a friend a few years ago in which he shared that he was made light of by his brother because he had a habit of giving at least 10% of his income to the church or other charities.

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We would occasionally play a game at the dinner table. I would pick up a bottle of ketchup (for example) and ask, “How many people did it take to get this ketchup to us?”

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What kind of world would it be if we allowed twelve-year-old children to drive without training, or operate power tools without practice?

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Life would be more comfortable for all of us if could agree on everything — probably not.

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Over the past eighteen months or so we have been thinking a lot about work. There have been some who lost their jobs. There have been others who have been afraid. Some whom many took for granted suddenly were labelled “essential.” I felt from the beginning this was a label that represented t…

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Exhausted. Worn out. Fed up. Tired of all this. And it seems that some people just never stop poking the sores. Some are no doubt well-meaning, but others seem to be intent on making the rest of us just as miserable as they are. I believe that there are a few of us that have the luxury of be…

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The film and pictures coming out of Afghanistan during the past week have been distressing to say the least. No doubt, life has been distressing in Afghanistan for nearly 50 years now. It is just that most of us do not often see in such stark images the desperation that results from the endi…

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The saying, “He is dancing like nobody is watching,” brings to my mind a specific context. I have heard it almost exclusively at celebrations (graduations, weddings, birthdays) in reference to someone (he or she) who is dancing (usually not very well) fully aware of the setting but in a worl…

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MAYFIELD — Trace Creek Baptist Church Pastor Ronnie Stinson said it was encouraging to watch church members become more intentional as they went out in big numbers with the gospel in hand as part of the Gospel to Every Home initiative two weeks ago as part of the annual Mission Week activities.

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The first few chapters of Genesis have been dragged through all sorts of modern arguments and philosophies. How one interprets them has become, for some, a litmus test of faith. For me, personally, I cannot seem to get past the first verse without wondering if God started with nothing or beg…

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We are recently, as a society, obsessed with being noticed.

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The very first thing any being said in the Bible is, “Let there be light.” This is the first word that is necessary when sorting out the chaos that is the universe. That scale is still beyond us. The light began the process of separating and sorting that makes the rest of creation possible.

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I have heard it only a few times, and each time I felt a little disgusted and had to stuff down a laugh at the same time. It is the desperate cry of one who is attempting to access entitlement from the pedestal of privilege as they learn they are not going to get their way. “Do you know who …

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There are many beautiful things in this world — mountains, waterfalls, a rugged coastline, coral reefs and deserts to name a few. There is however a point at which one can get too close. Even a relatively small waterfall can be treacherous to walk under and a large one becomes increasingly t…

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This weekend we will celebrate the signing of the Declaration of Independence on July 4th. Over the course of my life the details of that celebration have changed. I have been to parks, riverfronts, a few overseas, and for several years after fireworks became legal, we had a decent show at m…

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Last summer was strange at our house. We stayed busy enough, but we missed our normal summer trips. The things we missed most were summer camps. There is the traditional version of camp for a week or two at a facility away from town. There is also the summer mission trip to other places to h…

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I know people who seem to see nothing but the good. They are encouraging and find the right words even in difficult situations. I am certain that their eyes are perhaps clearer than mine, but not much is said about the negative. It is not ignored. It is turned around. There is often not so m…

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I like music. I can, for brief moments, listen to nearly anything. I do not always understand or appreciate it, but I can try. My current tastes tend toward classical and bluegrass, but if you were to walk into my office you might hear traditional Andean pipes, Eastern European folk music, o…

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“I am oppressed with a sense of the impropriety of uttering words on this occasion. If silence is ever golden, it must be here beside the graves of fifteen thousand men, whose lives were more significant than speech, and whose death was a poem, the music of which can never be sung. With word…

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I sometimes have a hard time being still. I am better than I used to be, but still have a way to go. It is not sitting still that is the hardest part. It is sitting still and not being annoyed by the need to sit still in some places. I carry a book with me in my car. I call it my “appointmen…

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She was 19 years old and felt horrible, her night had not ended the way she had hoped. There she was after her shift as a waitress, sifting through the night’s garbage with her equally upset (not mad, just upset) fiancé. She was helping to clean up and at some point, her new ever-so-slightly…

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There is an encouragement in the New Testament from the apostle John written to encourage believers to stay focused on what is important. He says, “Do not love the world, or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in him.” (I John 2:15).

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I’ve seen variations of a couple of quotes, which many have claimed and many more attributed to the well-known person from which they first heard it. The first is, “If you are not outraged, you are not paying attention.” The second is, “People like being outraged and offended constantly, it …

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I can’t remember exactly how I met him, but we connected pretty quickly telling fishing stories. He did not have any from the last five years because he had only recently been released from state prison in Jackson, Michigan. He helped me with a few projects, and I helped him move a few thing…

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Anyone who reads this space regularly knows that I am fascinated by what makes us, us. And what makes me, me. Stories, history, perspective and faith are just four of the factors that mix to make us who we are from the individual to the whole of humanity. Some things bring nearly everyone to…

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There it was, a beautiful brand new bicycle. It was what she really wanted. What she got, at first, was a dollhouse that was lovingly made by her father. The disappointment on her 10-year-old face was enough to convince her dad to go and sell the dollhouse and buy her that bike. There was no…

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One of the most well-known of the ancient Christian preachers is John Chrysostom (c. 340-407). He is well-known because so many of his writings have survived. Many of his sermons hold up well even today.

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My faith heritage is located in the Radical Reformation and Reason. Because of that, Holy Week is for people of similar heritage pretty much like any other week of the year. Those who come from mainline traditions may spend more days attending services this week than any other time of year.