Author Archives: Bill

October 13 – Where the Lines Have Fallen

Many of you know that Becky and I are away this week (and don’t worry, this was posted ahead of time). We are in Paris celebrating our 40th wedding anniversary.  Such joy!  Much could be said and will be said, but as we remember October 16, 1977, we remember especially words spoken.

He may have used an older version of the Worship Book, but the Reverend Kim Warner’s words would have been something like this: Continue reading

October 6 – The Best Bureaucrat

The details don’t matter. I had to deal with the bureaucracy on behalf of someone else. I assumed my informal advocacy would be of little avail, but it seemed worth a try. Who knew the person on the other end of the line would be the Best Bureaucrat.

As our conversation began, I explained my friend’s problem as best I could. The Best Bureaucrat listened well and asked clarifying questions. When it became clear to her that I do not speak bureaucratese, she immediately switched to English. Again she listened well as I tried to describe the dilemma in which my friend found himself. The Best Bureaucrat did not recommend I fill out a form or read a publication. She listened and explained and made sure I understood what she was saying, just as she made sure she understood what I was saying.

Once we were clear about the problem my friend needed to solve, the Best Bureaucrat went to work. I would have to call another office. The Best Bureaucrat told me what to ask for, and, by the way, what not to say. She described for me the place my friend would want to be after all the questions were answered and all the information provided. Our goal was not a completed form, but the particular benefits my friend deserved. Continue reading

September 29 – Light in the Darkness

You may have noticed the new street lights in Middletown Township. They showed up in our neighborhood a couple of weeks ago. Apparently the township is going to save all sorts of money by shifting from sodium vapor lights to the new LED lights. Good for them. And good for us, I say.

Sodium vapor lights have been used everywhere for the past few decades, providing a dull orange nighttime glow to our streets and cityscapes. I never liked them.

The light from the new LED lamps seems more akin to the light of a full moon on a clear night than to a scene from some film about our dystopian future. I’ll take the full moon over dystopia any day.

Light is, of course, one of the powerful images used in Scripture to describe God’s presence in our world and what it means to live in fellowship with him. Continue reading

September 22 – Shall Danger or Sword?

Like many of you, Becky and I have spent the evenings of this past week watching Ken Burns’ “The Vietnam War.” Five episodes and nine hours in, we have reached the halfway point of the series and the beginning of 1968 in the story it tells. The next episode will take us to the Tet Offensive. The second half of the series will add over 35,000 American deaths to the over 20,000 already seen through the end of 1967.

Over two million Vietnamese north and south of the DMZ lost their lives during the war.

At the end of 1967, I was a junior in high school. The story Burns has told through the first half of the series is largely the story that unfolded during my junior high and high school years, and I remember it well. Always fascinated by history and current events, I watched as Walter Cronkite, David Brinkley, and Chet Huntley brought reports from the war into our living room evening by evening. Our copy of Time or Newsweek was usually in the mailbox on Thursdays and I would read them first thing when I got home from school. Continue reading

September 15 – The Vocabulary of the Holy Spirit

Earlier this week LPC’s amazing mission partner in North Philadelphia, Hunting Park Christian Academy, posted videos on its Facebook page showing four students reciting their memory verses at this week’s chapel service.

You may view the videos here, here, here, and here.

Yes, they are pretty cute, and, full disclosure, Becky works at HPCA.

LPC people hear about HPCA all the time and have been generous supporters of its mission and ministry.  HPCA says of itself, “At Hunting Park Christian Academy, our goal is to raise up Christian young people who excel in all areas of their lives.  Our mission is to provide an affordable, quality, Christian education that celebrates a diverse community and leads children to know and serve the Lord.”  By all measures, they are succeeding, though they are hardly ready to rest on their well-deserved laurels. Continue reading