Category Archives: Uncategorized

Huff-puff-puff, I Did It!

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Well, I’ve just cranked out and submitted my Newswithviews column for the week. Thanks to all of you who were pulling for me! But my head feels like it’s been used for a basketball.

The hardest part was shifting my focus from writing another chapter of The Wind From Heaven to writing about the inane goings-on in this shameful era of our history. Hint: the novel is a lot more fun.

So I contemplated the past few days’ blog posts and found two that seemed to go together very well: “Beyond Putrid” and the one about the Youth Climate Strike. Tune in Thursday to see how I did it.

And now I think I’ve earned the right to sit outside on this beautiful September day and do a crossword puzzle. Don’t worry–I’ve already done my bike ride.

Sick Again!

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I thought I was going to get through a weekend, for once, without an allergy attack. What ever gave me that idea? It found me in the middle of the afternoon and hasn’t stopped torturing me since.

I had a hellish night. Had no use of my nostrils until 5:30 in the morning.

This is at least the fourth weekend this summer that I’ve been afflicted. It’s gotten so I expect it. Can it be that I’ll be forced to sit and vegetate in yet another doctor’s office? I didn’t have any of this at all until mid-June.

And the tenant from Mordor has decided to build a “shed” for his motorized tricycle right outside my front door. The landlord lets him do anything he wants. I’m too sick to stop him.

A Belt of Courage: ‘King Alfred’s War Song’

We think we’ve got troubles? King Alfred, twelve hundred years ago–he had troubles! Heathen poured across the sea and swamped his kingdom, they’d have killed him if they’d caught him, he had to hide out in a peasant’s shack in the middle of a swamp…

And he wrote this: King Alfred’s War Song. “For the Lord is our defense, Jesu defend us!” I don’t know about you, but I need a belt of that just now.

Psalm 127: “My hope is in the LORD, which made heaven and earth.”

Someday the heathen will either be converted or destroyed. By their own hand, most likely.

Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might. (Ephesians 6)

‘My Grandfather’s House is… Gone’ (2015)

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Why do we do this to ourselves–tear down the places of our lives, family places, and replace them with soul-less, lifeless, meaningless nail salons, trendy restaurants that won’t stay in business for six months, and condos that people will live in for just a year or two before they move on?

It’s bound to make money for somebody. I suppose.

Virtually all the places of my childhood are gone, wiped out, not even left as history. Places we loved in our first years of marriage, they’re gone, too.

I can’t imagine how this can possibly be good for us.

A Parable of Forced Equality

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New York wants to abolish programs and schools for gifted and talented students. There is a parable from the ancient world which seems to tell us why.

This story was told by both Herodotus, a Greek, and Livy, a Roman who lived some centuries after Herodotus. But I don’t think Livy lifted the story from Herodotus. Both presented it as a historical event, but it has much more the feel of a well-known parable.

The tyrant who ruled a certain city had one son to succeed him; but the young man didn’t know how he ought to go about being an effective tyrant. He asked his father, “How do you govern the city? How have you managed to stay in power for so many years?”

“I’ll teach you; it’s quite simple,” said the father.

Taking his son to a poppy field outside the city, the tyrant said, “Watch.” And with his cane he proceeded to knock the heads off all the poppies around them.

“This is how you rule the city,” he explained. “Even as I have cut all these poppies down so that none is higher than another, so have I maintained my power: by cutting down any man who rises to a certain height above the others, so that none is any greater than another, but all are equal; all are weak. I am the only one who towers over all. There is no one else whom they can turn to for a leader.”

You can see this sort of “diversity” has a very ancient pedigree. Tyrants have been cutting people down for thousands of years.

Fallen human nature hasn’t changed.

Raining Like Crazy

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So we’re in the Stop & Shop buying our groceries for the week, this morning–Happy Labor Day, everybody–and we’re standing in the checkout line, with a guy behind us who looks just like Pat Morita but probably isn’t–

And suddenly everybody in the store looks up nervously, because it’s a deep drum-roll overhead, like giants are using the roof of the building for a party… And I’m thinking, “How many horror movies could you start with this exact scene?” But no one panicked because the store has windows and we could all see it was torrential rains making all that noise.

We had a few anxious moments, driving home. Patty gets nervous when we can’t see the road.

And now it’s let up. It stopped raining as soon as we got our groceries put away.

And Patty’s reading about “Flirty” the emotional support mini-horse who was taken aboard an airliner recently.

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As you can see, the mini-horse is no bigger than many service dogs that now fly aboard airliners without provoking astonishment. Except “Flirty” weighs two or three times as much as a dog the same size.

People sure are emotionally fragile these days, dontcha think?

Try to Remember…..

Something a little different, a little sweet–from Marcia Settles’ blog, “A Mom Looking Up”

And yes, I remember that line from that song…

A Mom Looking Up

a time in September when life was slow and oh so mellow ……(Shout out to those who know that line)

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Prayer Request: Eddy

From Heidi we have a request for prayer for Eddy, a beloved member of her church, very badly injured in a recent auto accident.

Oh Lord–nothing hurts us like the loss of our loved ones, and our fellow-soldiers. Please, Father, spare your servant, Eddy: grant him healing, speed his recovery: for we know that all healing comes from you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Can I Get 10,000 Hits?

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It’s rare for this blog to get 10,000 views in a month, but I hope I have a better chance than this chameleon has of latching onto those soap bubbles.

We have averaged 300 views a day here, all year long. We have 9,400 views for August with two days left to go. So two more average days will do it.

Now, if I could figure out a way to sell more books, that would really be something…

Not a Nice Dream

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I had a dream which troubled me, the other night. I pay attention to dreams: they might be trying to tell me something.

I dreamed Patty and I, in her car, were returning home across the broadest stretch of the Raritan River, which required us to cross a bridge. It wasn’t any of the bridges that are really there. It looked old, like it might’ve been built in the late 1930s.

There was almost no traffic, and very soon we had to slow down because there was so much litter strewn about: beer bottles, garbage bags burst open to disgorge their contents, damaged cardboard boxes. The lane itself grew narrower. And there were people aimlessly shambling this way and that–drunks and druggies. They didn’t seem to notice us. Or much of anything else, for that matter. Looked sort of like a scene from the Sumerian underworld. We could only pray we wouldn’t run over any broken glass and become a part of that scene ourselves.

We came off the bridge to find the highway in much the same condition, as far as the eye could see. It’s not supposed to be like this. Not like this at all.

Then the cat shoved the bedroom door open and yowled at the top of her lungs.

I think maybe I’ve seen more pictures of San Francisco than is good for me.


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