First Blog

Hey, this is my first blog after starting this site for my book.  I wanted to mention a couple things.  I grew up going to a Presbyterian church.  In high school I attended this chuch plus a Methodist and a Baptist church.  I am now a former youth pastor and senior pastor.  I have served on staff in the following denominations:

Youth Pastor

Evangelical Free Church of America

Conservative Baptist Church

Senior (solo) Pastor 

Southern Baptist Church

Associate Part-time pastor

Conservative Baptist Church

On another note, I have already learned, since submitting my text for publication, a couple new illustrations that I wish I could’ve shared in the book which are a comfort to me as far as death, dying and heaven.  In future blogs I will share those illustrations with you.  I am constantly learning, as I minister to the dying and their families, new perspectives and new thoughts about death, dying and heaven.   I hope to share those with you, if you are interested, on this blog.  I have never blogged before and have no idea how often I will post.

The story of how this book came to be written is one of God’s sovereignty, one I hope to share sometime in the future.

Writing this book has been a great blessing to me, as I hope it is to you too.

 

 

Second blog post

August 11, 2016

OK, being brand new to this blogging thing, I can see it’s going to be fun.  Everything I read and experience I now think, “should I blog this?”  Here’s one of two illustrations I read recently that I wish I would’ve included in the book, and will definitely include for the second printing.  It’s called “hold on to your fork,” and is a great illustration of how much we have to look forward to in heaven.

There was a young woman who had been diagnosed with a terminal illness and had been given three months to live. So as she was getting her things in order, she contacted her pastor and had him come to her house to discuss certain aspects of her final wishes. She told him which songs she wanted sung at the service, what scriptures she would like read, and what outfit she wanted to be buried in.

Everything was in order and the pastor was preparing to leave when the young woman suddenly remembered something very important to her.

“There’s one more thing,” she said excitedly.

“What’s that?” came the pastor’s reply.

“I want to be buried with a fork in my right hand,” she told him.

The pastor stood looking at the young woman, not knowing quite what to say.

“That surprises you, doesn’t it?” the young woman asked.

“Well, to be honest, I’m puzzled by the request,” said the pastor.

The young woman explained. “My grandmother once told me a story that I never forgot and I have tried to pass along its message to those I love and those who are in need of encouragement.  Here’s her story:

“In all my years of attending church socials and potluck dinners, I always remember that when the dishes of the main course were being cleared, someone would inevitably lean over and say, ‘Keep your fork.’ It was my favorite part because I knew something better was coming . .  . like velvety chocolate cake or deep-dish apple pie. Something wonderful and with substance!’

So, I just want people to see me there in that casket with a fork in my hand and I want them to wonder, “What’s with the fork? Then I want you to tell them, “Keep your fork . . . the best is yet to come.”

The pastor’s eyes welled up with tears of joy as he hugged the young woman good-bye. He knew this would be one of the last times he would see her before her death. But he also knew that the young woman had a better grasp of heaven than he did. She had a better grasp of what heaven would be like than many people twice her age, with twice as much experience and knowledge. She KNEW that something better was coming.

At the funeral people were walking by the young woman’s casket and they saw the pretty dress she was wearing and the fork placed in her right hand. Over and over, the pastor heard the question, “What’s with the fork?” And over and over he smiled.

During his message, the pastor told the people of the conversation he had with the young woman shortly before she died. He also told them about the fork and about what it symbolized to her. The pastor told the people how he could not stop thinking about the fork and told them that they probably would not be able to stop thinking about it either.  He was right.

So the next time you reach down for your fork, let it remind you ever so gently, that the best is yet to come.   author unknown

This is your very first post. Click the Edit link to modify or delete it, or start a new post. If you like, use this post to tell readers why you started this blog and what you plan to do with it.

 

8/17/2016

Just a quick update.  The book came out to me, twenty copies, but there were some obvious errors the publisher’s editors and I missed but that I picked up on as I read through the book.  So we had to send it back again and I am currently waiting for the final error free print and digital copies to be put out by the publisher.  Hopefully very soon.   Thanks for your patience.

 

8/25/2016

Another quick update.  It’s strange doing these updates, because the book’s not out yet so I don’t know if anyone is reading these.  But if anyone is interested, I heard from my publisher today and he said the book is in the que(sp) to be reprinted with all errors corrected, and that it would be another week or two at most.  This really is a lot like waiting for a child to be born, which is funny since that’s the primary “living analogy” the book is built on, but the closer it gets, the more you anticipate it.  I feel like I’m going to jump out of my skin waiting for this book to come out.

8/25/2016

OK, OK, I’ll get “WordPress for Dummies.”   I can’t figure out how to get my title to the top of the page, and I can’t figure out how to get my newer posts to the top rather than the bottom of the page.  Sorry.