About the Author
Husband to Patty. Daddy to Kimberly and Tommie. Grandpa Doc to Cohen, Max, Fox, and Marlee. Pastor to Snow Hill Baptist Church. Graduate of Oklahoma Baptist University and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Reading. Photography. Golf. Colorado. Jeeping. Friend. The views and opinions expressed here are my own and should not be construed as representing the corporate views of the church I pastor.

Poetry …

A very good friend of mine recently began writing poetry. He is an accomplished writer and yet sometimes the transition to a different style is difficult. Rick sent me the piece below. Read carefully as there is much going on in this one. Excellent job!

Charity Hosptial

In a straight chair waiting

head propped up against the wall.

A hundred people ahead of him hurting,

when they get to him, they’ll call.

He had a good job for nine years.

Then someone sent it overseas.

He lost his health insurance, too,

now God blessed death, but by degrees.

Richest nation ever

too often led off by some old clown.

In the charity hosptial,

they still wait for that trickle down.

Somewhere Walls and Gates stand

and Trumpets blare.

Down at the clinic it’s one nurse,

no beds, stale air.

Big Churches getting bigger

purpose driven, empty man.

Where is God? Down at the charity hospital

holding on to some dying hand?

Still out in the hall

watching life drain and pass him by.

He is the excess population.

Why not just let him die?

Weighing in on White …

There is little doubt I am a Sooner fan. I may not be of the frothing variety, but with an OU alum for a father, we grew up wearing crimson and cream. We love our football OU style. Like most, I came away from Sooner footbal in December and January wondering what happened. Now every armchair wanna-be finds the nearest phone and demonstrates some of the most horrendous logic. You may be able to speculate on someone’s inability at proper logic and then they open their mouths and remove all doubt.

We could learn a bit here. I once heard it said better to be judged on the averages rather than the extremes. Jason White may not throw over 300 yards every game and include 4 touchdowns, but he certainly will not consistently throw as few as 100 yards, two interceptions and no TD’s. Looking at the averages for Jason’s performances still leaves him a Heisman candidate. I am glad one sermon does not make a preacher and I am equally glad one poor sermon does not make one a poor preacher.

Barry Tramel wrote a good piece on White that lends some lucidity to the cacaphony of absuridity filling the radio airwaves and filling inboxes. He looks to history and a recent movie hit to draw some interesting comparisons and offer some insight into the human spirit. I agree with his conclusion.

Poison for Pain …

My parents own a cabin at a private lake west of Oklahoma City. We grew up “going to the lake” Friday evenings through Saturday during the spring and summer months. Unless it was Memorial Day, Labor Day or another holiday, we were home for worship on Sundays. Early on we learned to be on the lookout for Copperheads – poisonous snakes. We kept our eyes open as we rode motorcycles and hiked. We scoured the landscape as we walked to the swimming hole or to fish. Poison strikes fear, especially in youngsters.

Today I read where the poison taken from a sea snail may be helfpul for those facing pain from cancer and AIDS. An inset carries the headline, “Venom as elixir.” Talk about turning things upside down – poison for pain!

Isn’t it interesting how many things get turned upside down. I think of Jesus’ phrase repeated in the Sermon on the Mount, “You have heard it said, but I say to you …” He turned conventional wisdom and popular notions upside down. Life with Jesus is an experience in an upside down life being the right side up way to live.

Desperate times call for desperate measures …

Today’s “Daily Oklahoman” carries an article about the arrest of a bank robber. This is no ordinary story – or is it. Generally we consider the reason behind a bank robbery to be the support of some habit that so controls a person they cannot keep a steady job. The need for money overwhelms better judgment – as if good judgment leads to damaging habits. The habits could range from drug use/abuse to extreme laziness. Debts mount and one considers the only solution to be a bank heist.

Seems as though a reputable businessman, community leader and family man came to conclude the only way he could bolster the bottom line and keep things afloat was to rob a bank in Edmond. Seems logical to me – what about you?

We look at the details of the story and immediately find this an abberation – an extra-ordinary case. Yet, this man’s line of thinking fits the standard for those who would not be considered reputable at all. Therein lies the value of the phrase, “There but for the grace of God go I.” Left to ourselves, reputable or no, we too make such poor decisions.

God moves to desperate measures. Surely you would agree the notion of giving up your Son for a cast of “reputable and disreputable” mugs would appear quite desperate. The good news is it was his idea for us not our own for ourselves. Out of this action God demonstrates the effects of these desperate actions for those experiencing desperate times. He extends grace where we would spurn it. He grants mercy where we would shun such action. I do not suggest that everyone who follows God makes stellar decisions. There is penty of evidence to the contrary. I simply offer this as an illustration to thank God for his demonstration of grace and mercy when we found/find ourselves in “desperate times.”

Thank you God for acting for me when my way of thinking would only lead me to . . . do anything but what would be right.

Some addiitions …

I moved over my posts from “Musings on life and faith” from December 2003 to justtodd here with Typepad. I am still figuring out the template and the things I can do. Keep checking back to see the latest in my attempts to improve the blog experience.