Category Archives: books

Pastors Need Friends

Pastors struggle to have deep and meaningful friendships. Note the words “deep and meaningful”. Most pastors would say they have lots of friends but often they are more shallow than deep and more superficial than meaningful. There are reasons for that. Deeper friendships can be betrayed. Deeper friendships take effort. Deeper friendships can cause jealousy. Lots of reasons.
I recently finished a Continue reading

My friend’s education into my cheapskate ways

Here is the basic transcript of a recent conversation I had with my pastor buddy.

Me: Did you get a copy of my new book “30 Days to Acts” yet? You wrote the foreword.
Him: No, did that come out already?
Me: Yes. You need to buy a copy. You wrote the foreword.
Him: Well, since I wrote the foreword, shouldn’t you send me a free copy?
Me: The foreword wasn’t THAT good.

And that is when he realized his friend is cheap.

It’s a Christmas Miracle!

I’ve given birth to a new book. (Well, it was a different kind of labor than you mothers have.) It is called “30 Days to Acts: A Devotional Commentary”. You can get this devotional book at Amazon. (Just click on the picture.) Merry Christmas!

30 Days to Acts

Civil War Reading

The Civil War wasn’t very civil. There were more American casualties than all the rest of our wars combined. It was ugly and brutal and lasted far longer than any had anticipated.

On summer vacation I read “Battle Cry of Freedom” by James McPherson. It won a Pulitzer Prize so I figured I should give it a try. And why, by the way, have my books been skipped over in this Pulitzer Prize thing? But I digress.
The book is less than 900 pages. Long, but much shorter than some others including Shelby Foote’s trilogy. It is well documented and well written. The well written part is really helpful, especially when there are 900 pages involved.

I note a couple of things that I learned or Continue reading

Oceans, row boats and big sharks

I’m a land lubber. Never sailed, never rowed more than a lap around a (small) lake. But I recently read two books about water so now I’m kind of an expert.
“The Boys in the Boat” is the story of nine American rowers who won gold in the 1936 Olympics. It is a fascinating story of these young men. But the real fascination was the story of one of the men who grew up under extreme difficulties- death of a young mother, unkind stepmother, father without willingness to intercede. His story is worth the read. And this is a very well written book.
The second book is Continue reading

Connected by Faith

The church where I was saved many years ago just bought 500 copies of my devotional book “Immersed: 40 Days to a Deeper Faith”. They are going to use it for a church wide series beginning the week after Easter. Many churches have used the book that way now, but there is a special connection you have with the church where you gave your life to Christ.

I trusted Christ as my Savior and Lord in the old worship center at Continue reading

My Top Ten Books

My wife recently posted her 10 most influential books. (She put my books on her list. Danger of nepotism?) So, here is my stab at my most influential. (Not counting my own. Danger of ridicule?) And, I’ve doubled and trebled up to get in some more. And, I’m leaving out some books that ought to get me banned from libraries and sitting rooms as penance.

1. The Bible. I read through the bible every year at least once and have for many years. It is more thrilling to me every year and is the foundation for my faith and my life. It is really 66 books, of course, but I’ll count it as one for this. If you haven’t read it yet, try starting with John and then Acts. Finish the New Testament a couple of times and then read the entire book.

2. The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis. This is a 7 book set. It is lots of fun to get lost in them. Very easy reading. I love the spiritual connection and the fun. I read them to my children and look forward to reading them to my grandchildren. And, add to this Mere Christianity (Lewis’s best non-fiction, I think) and The Screwtape Letters (tremendous insights into our spiritual battles) by Lewis. A serious Christian thinker not reading Mere Christianity is sort of like a serious student of English novels never reading A Tale of Two Cities–these things ought not to be done.

3. Trilogy of the Civil War by Shelby Foote. These three Continue reading

It Just Takes One

“There is joy in the presence of God’s angels over one sinner who repents.” Luke 15:10
Just one salvation is all it take to bring joy to heaven.
Some think of people like pennies–there are lots of them and they aren’t worth much individually. God thinks of them like diamonds–each is unique and of tremendous value.
Our focal verse nestles in the middle of three parables told by Jesus The first tells of a lost sheep, the second of a lost coin, and the third of a lost son. Each tells the same message. There is great rejoicing over Continue reading

The Immersed Connection

Books can have a deep connection with us. I love my connection with books and authors that have been meaningful in my life.
I recently preached in Atlanta in a church that had used my book “Immersed: 40 Days to a Deeper Faith” church-wide. Most of them had read each chapter of the book for 40 straight days, discussed it in their small groups and there was even a sermon series connected to it.
Because of that, we had a special connection- an ‘Immersed connection’. Men and women, teenagers, even some kids Continue reading

Take Responsibility for your Behavior

   “The healthy way to deal with God’s repentance call is to take personal responsibility.  I’m not responsible for the wrongs of others, but I am responsible for my own choices and decisions.

   I love playing basketball with Milton.  For the past many years, Milton and I have played together.  We’ve been on the same team in our church league basketball and shared many pick-up games.  And we have gotten older and older.

   Milton, like me does not want to lose.  This former college basketball player knows what he is doing on the court and he plays to win.  But, as our ages continue to increase Continue reading