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The Last Word (Page 12)

Ordinary Donkeys

With Palm Sunday just days away, I thought I’d share a parable about the donkey who carried Jesus into Jerusalem so long ago. The story goes that on the day after Jesus’ triumphal entry, the donkey awakened still excited about the day before. He went into town and found some people near a well. He…

The Master Gardener

The weather in Southeast Iowa has been amazing this year! The last two weekends we’ve had temperatures around 70 degrees, which has taken away any excuse for not doing some much needed yard work. You see, I have a stand of pine trees along my property that has needed attention ever since I moved in.…

Facebook Official

I keep reading about studies that say spending too much time with online social media can lead to depression. You see, most people present an idealized version of their lives for others to see. When we compare our ordinary, less-than-perfect lives with the carefully curated pictures of our friends, sometimes it can be a little…

The Best Candidate

With cable news now covering the presidential primaries 24/7, it can be easy for people to get caught up in a kind of partisan fever. The job of the communications teams for all those would-be leaders is to build up their candidate and tear down everyone else. In heated political moments like this, it’s good…

Necessary for Growth

Over the years, I’ve had folks come to me seeking counsel about some person in their life. Sometimes it’s a spouse, friend or co-worker. Oftentimes a conflict is involved. One of the most effective counseling strategies I have at that point is simply to listen. And most of the time that’s all that’s required. But…

The Journey Begins

Do you ever wish there was a guidebook for how to navigate the modern world faithfully? Do you ever long for clear, practical advice about how to live as a disciple? Well, you are in luck, because it turns out that was one of Jesus’ major concerns, as well. During the Lenten season, we not…

A Seven-Day-a-Week Church

Last night, one of Keokuk’s presidential caucuses was held in our fellowship hall. Many people came to our church that may not enter a church at any other time. In case you didn’t know it, First Christian is a very important part of the fabric of the tri-state area. This morning, I asked Mitzi (our…

Doing Likewise

This week, I’m writing my Last Word from the Minister’s Institute at the Christian Conference Center in Newton. As it has in other years, the snow is flying and it’s not really safe to come or go. However, that didn’t stop one of my dinner mates, who made it about a mile down the road…

Time for Garden Planning

Last summer, Tammy and I tried our hand at gardening by growing a couple of cucumber plants outside our back door. We were a little late in getting started, but once those plants started producing cucumbers, I was in pickle heaven! And that’s a good thing, because the store-bought pickles I crave are really expensive.…

Living in Faith Everyday

Yesterday, I heard an interview with the editor of a series of books called “The Last Interview.” Apparently, not long before their deaths, authors like Ernest Hemmingway and Philip K. Dick were interviewed about their lives and their writing. The perspectives of the authors were varied. For instance, Philip K. Dick loved to talk about…