A 'Sceptre' From the King


There is a wonderful episode in the life of the great missionary explorer, David Livingstone. He started hiking all over Africa back in 1840, ministering to the sick and preaching the Gospel wherever he went. He did that for 33 years until he died in 1873. 

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Smarter than Einstein


I admit it sounds a little 'legendary', but I sure do hope it is true. Billy Graham once spoke of it. Does that help? I'm referring to that delightful story about Einstein riding the train back to his residence from Princeton. It was his very first day of classes at Princeton; he had just moved into a brand new residence, and it was his very first ride back to it. 

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Men...Wanted


Speaking of men and the whole masculine race (oh, we weren't? Well, it's time we did then), I love that episode in Garrison Keillor's book, We Are Still Married, about the Lake Wobegon Schroeders. 

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The Gang at Kosmophilos State Prison


The gang at Kosmophilos State Prison is a strange group of people. Their very presence in the place is the ultimate proof of that there's not a single one there that couldn't have gone free at one time, and yet, there they all sit, still doin' their time!

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Himalayan Center For Missions


Greetings from India! I am so excited to give you an update on the Himalayan Center For Missions here in India. The class started a week before we arrived and studied through the Gospel of Luke. Since we have arrived we have studied through the book of Daniel and are now studying Revelation! 

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Are Christians 'Narrow'?


Christians are often accused of being 'narrow' these days: "narrow-minded", "intolerant", "inflexible" and all that stuff. But during these last few decades, living and ministering in good ol' "open-minded" California, I've done a lot of thinking on that subject. And here's what I've come up with. Maybe it will strike a chord with you in your particular setting as well. 

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Only One Name Will Do

 

There's a story about something that happened at the Ford Motor Company, way back in the early years, when they had just made their first expansion and moved into the new Piquette Avenue plant. 

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His Plan...His Vision


Okay: here is my apology—though not very apologetic—to any who might be wishing that we would follow the "Corporate America" model of Christian Faith and Church, so popular these days: 

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Bless This Church


 

 The very first time I met this dear congregation, we were worshipping in an empty store-front sho in the little strip-mall on Taft and Tustin. BB&H Auto Parts was still doing business just a few doors down from us. There was a Scuba shop right next door. It was a Sunday morning in January 1995; we had come to worship for the very first time. Everyone who came brought a chair to make it happen. 

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Risk-Taker!


Epaphroditus. Now there's a Biblical character that doesn't get much attention. When was the last time you spent a few minutes meditating on the life and merits of Epaphroditus? 

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Spoiled Masterpieces


Down through the centuries—in fact, over five of them now—the human race has heaped up praises for what Michelangelo painted on the ceiling of that Sistine Chapel. "Magnificent" they call it; "colossal"; "unprecedented", "the only one of its kind", and...

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Missions Christmas List




“The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness, on them has light shone.” (Is 9:2 ESV) 

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Be An Out-of-Place Christian

Somewhere between Spring Street and HIll in the middle of L.A,'s "Chinatown", there used to be a bookstore that was completely funded and inventoried by the Beijing Press, Communist China's official government publishing agency. It was also, quite frankly, one of the propaganda arms of the Communist regime. Back in the late 1970's I was shocked to discover it of course. I don't know if the store is still there now, but what's shocking these days, anyway?—with Americans electing outright socialists and communists into Congress.  

Prior to our mission work in Taiwan, Sharilyn and I had started a little ministry up in Chinatown where we would visit the little Chinese bookstores and offer them Christian literature, to sell along with the rest of their inventory. The books were all in Chinese, very attractively published by the Chinese Christian Press, and they were free. We would buy them at bulk rate and just give them to the proprietors; we even included a nice rotating wire rack that many of the store owners couldn't resist. 

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Your Lofty 'Career'


 

Nobody really remembers Thomas Edison's job. It had not the slightest impact upon our world. And today, it is of no consequence whatsoever. But, just for your information, he was a telegraph operator; you know: "dash-dit-dash-dash  dit-dash  dash-dit-dit  dit-dash" all day long. 

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Me...Under the Lamb and Other Things




I've had so many comments on that Chinese character I mentioned a few weeks ago, that I decided to devote this issue of my article to some of the other things I've learned over the years about the ancient theism of the people of China. Yes, they were theists all right—monotheists as a matter of fact—and everything I share here will just bring glory to our awesome God —"The Most High who rules over all the kingdoms of men" (Dan 4: 17), and who "has not left Himself without witness" (Acts 14:17).

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It Takes a Storm!


 

Joseph Conrad is one of my favorite authors —I've not read a novel of his yet that I didn't like. But one of them—Typhoon—is truly unforgettable. 

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Our Children...Under Siege


I don't normally do this with my weekly article, but it can't be avoided. Our children are under siege in this State and if each and every one of us doesn't rise up as parents, grandparents, Christians, community leaders and...well...just plain human beings, we will surely be held accountable for it.  

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My 'Miss America'


 I don't normally make a big deal about it and so most folks don't realize that I am married to a 'Miss America'. For several years into our marriage, I didn't even know myself. I guess I should have: after all, she is the most beautiful person I've ever met. In fact, throughout my married life—right up to this moment—I have never even felt close to being worthy of her.   It wasn't until we got to Taiwan and moved into the little Hakka village of Hsi Hu, that she became 'Miss America'. Surprisingly, Sharilyn repeatedly asks me not to share her 'achievement' with others. I think what rubs the wrong way is the fact that it was our garbage man in Hsi Hu who gave her the title.    Mr. Lyou never did learn her real name. The first day he met her, he was standing waist-deep in the contents of the garbage truck, with clothes that looked quite like his surroundings and a pair of yellow plastic boots that were pitifully trying to keep his feet clean. The first thing he said to Sharilyn, as she handed up her pail of trash, was: "Mei-guo Syau-jye, ni hao"—"Miss America, how are you?" 

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The Man in the Black Car


 

 I once had lunch with a missionary who had lived and worked for over a decade not far from—are you ready for this?—Casablanca. 

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What Holds You Up?


 

 I love that old New York City story about the CEO and the fluorescent tube. Haven't heard that one? Well, where have you been? Not in New York City, that's for sure. 

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