Given the politico-cultural rhetoric of today—which has included references aloud to a second civil war—it is interesting to re-read President Lincoln’s Thanksgiving Day Proclamation, which he delivered in 1863, midway through the actual Civil War. I offer it here, with asterisks and notes below. Washington, D.C. October 3, 1863 By the President of the United…

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I am studying the Book of James. Lots of Christians like John’s gospel and epistles best, full as they are of love, love, love. I like James’s writing because it is less mystical, more pragmatic.  Boiled down, James’s message to believers is this: Get your 💩 together. Refreshing clarity for a world drowning in relativism. Today, I…

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In my reading today, two passages struck me as appropriate for our times:   “The seven social sins are: Wealth without work. Pleasure without conscience. Knowledge without character. Commerce without morality. Science without humanity. Worship without sacrifice. Politics without principle.” — From a sermon given by Frederick Lewis Donaldson in Westminster Abbey, London, on March 20, 1925.   “Of all tyrannies, a…

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I recently popped in via Zoom to a meeting of the Kingdom Writers Association, a Christian writers group here in San Diego. My hosts, the wondrous Wyckoffs, asked me to reprise something I’d shared at an earlier writers conference. I call it my Anti-Procrastination Formula. Rare is the writer who doesn’t struggle with procrastination. I…

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Over the weekend, I visited Amazon and GoodReads to catch up on the latest reader reviews of Indianapolis. Some writers, artists, actors, and musicians say they never read reviews. I actually try to read every review—especially reader reviews—because I consider it quality control. What do readers like? What turns them off? These questions are important to me. In fact,…

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Amid the strange hush that seems to have blanketed the world, I feel a certain survivor’s guilt. April rains have turned my cul de sac neighborhood lush and green. Flowers burst from hillsides and on my neighbor’s horse ranch in hues of gold, burnt orange, lilac, blue, red, pink and and white. The birds have…

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Two weeks into the COVID quarantine, and things are looking serious. Each day, there are enough people dying to have filled my small church. In my mind’s eye, I imagine them—mothers, fathers, grandmothers, grandfathers, sons, and daughters—all perfect strangers, filling rows in our sanctuary. Then they blink out, there and gone, their souls floating off…

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Here in locked-down California, I find myself saying things I never thought I’d say in America, such as, “Today, I found meat in the grocery store!” Also, I am sharing grocery run duties with a couple of kind neighbors. The other day I received this text from my neighbor Debbie, who (like me) is serious…

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I was getting my daily dose of the Wall Street Journal when I came across this story: “Seven Reasons Why South Korea’s BTS is an American Phenomenon.” Curious, I read further about BTS, the squeaky-clean boy band that’s conquering the planet. Then I watched a couple of videos. If I admit I like them, do I…

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