Elegance interrupted

My mother, who grew up on a Depression-era tobacco farm with few fineries, was an early subscriber to Southern Living magazine in 1966. It was a lifestyle journal for Dixie chicks long before the band ...

Peace for our weary souls

Noted as the creator of the modern detective novel and the master of the macabre, Edgar Allan Poe's writings were shaped in large part by his experiences. His was a life fraught with death, denial, dr ...

Come, labor on

It was in 1894 that President Grover Cleveland signed into law the Labor Day holiday, a day created by the labor movement as a celebration of the American worker. Struggles between labor and employers ...

Focusing on our top priority

One of the greatest challenges we face every year is filling out our tax returns. There are so many complexities to tax law that many people use an accountant to get the job done. For similar reasons ...

Seek eternal life today!

You are going to die.So is everyone you love -- your husband or wife, your children, your parents, your friends, your enemies. It may happen tomorrow or the day after tomorrow, next month, or maybe no ...

'Simple as A... B... C'

Not every idea is good or true. Consider that in the late 18th century, it was considered good medical practice to cleanse the blood of seriously ill individuals by the use of leeches. Also take into ...

Life by the decade

For me, the important birthdays and anniversaries end with a zero. And this was one of those years, because tomorrow -- Aug. 7 -- is our 40th anniversary.It was mid-spring when Lori asked over a cup o ...

Never alone

At our church this summer we have been working our way through the 23rd Psalm. In the recent days of upheaval in our country, how we need to hear the psalmist's words in verse 4: "Even though I walk t ...

The keeper of tears

For much of the past two years of my life, I have had many opportunities to experience, and thus understand more clearly, the great truth of the words of Ecclesiastes, where we read that there is a "t ...

These tiring days

We are all tired of the days we are living in, this season of violence. The mass murder by truck of citizens gathered to celebrate life in the free republic of France is only the latest incident in ou ...

Independence for all

On Monday, this country will celebrate what can be easily argued as its greatest and most important holiday. Throughout human history nations, states, cities, tribes and other organizations of humans ...

Reflections upon retirement

This past Wednesday, I ended 45 years of pastoral ministry, most of which has been served as a solo/senior pastor. I can honestly say that it has been a journey that I have thoroughly enjoyed. Like al ...

On bondage, addiction and idolatry

One of my favorite places to preach is Faith Home, a residential addictions ministry founded by Momma Barnes and her husband in Greenwood. It's an eight-week rehab where faith in Jesus Christ is joine ...

New beginnings

To the joy of teachers and students (and in some cases, to the chagrin of parents), school is out for another year. Our church is one of the many throughout this area that conducted Graduate Recogniti ...

Monuments and memorials

A wedding and a baptism have taken me to Washington twice in the past year, a city I had not visited in some time. Washington has changed enormously. Uber makes transportation a breeze. The city is ra ...

The day of Pentecost and discipleship

This Sunday, many Christians in this community and throughout the world will celebrate Pentecost. Perhaps there are some folk who are unfamiliar with Pentecost, its significance, and the power that co ...

Going for the gold

In a matter of weeks, thousands of athletes from around the world will descend on Rio de Janeiro to participate in the Summer Olympics. Most will seek to win the gold, that medal which will proclaim t ...

The privilege

Irecently buried three saints in a bit over a week. All widows, all in their 90s. I had prayed with them as they neared life's final adventure. Their lives were deeply formed by their long friendship ...

The God of grace

Is it any wonder so many people in our culture have such a hard time understanding grace? (This includes many people in the church, who, like everyone else, are being conditioned by the culture.) Virt ...

The one who walks with us

Last week the pastor's article was a meaningful exposition of the Christian faith in relationship to the game of golf. Bishop Beasley, himself a very accomplished golfer, gave us much to ponder. If yo ...

Tell all the truth, but tell it slant

"Tell all the truth but tell it slant —"Success in Circuit lies"Too bright for our infirm Delight"The Truth's superb surprise"As Lightning to the Children eased"With explanation kind"The Truth m ...

'Cure for weary faith'

ISIS on the prowl. Terrorism on the rise. Gunmen mowing down people left and right. Loss of civility in society. Dysfunctional government in D.C. Citizens apprehensive, awaiting the next shoe to drop. ...

Of sports cars and prison camps

Somewhere along the way a dream was born. She was raised in a Baptist youth group with liberal doses of weekend rays on the sands of Jax Beach. A choir robe and a pink and white polka-dot bikini were ...

The Cross of the King

Tomorrow is fourth Sunday of Lent, meaning that we are about halfway through the season. I don't want to rush us to Good Friday -- we need as much time as possible to prepare ourselves mentally and sp ...