Rustlings

Rustlings (October 19, 2020)

Rustlings (October 19, 2020)

I rarely repeat sermons. I have ‘conference/retreat’ sessions that I’ve repeated numerous times, but rarely do complete sermons garner a second chance in the pulpit. Having said that, I often find myself repeating stories told in sermons, poems recited in sermons,...

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Rustlings (October 12, 2020)

Rustlings (October 12, 2020)

As we step into the last quarter of 2020, I’m keenly aware of what and who we have lost this year. Weekly, your ministers counsel with members of the church and community who are grieving the loss of events, milestones and even worse, souls that have been close to us...

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Rustlings (October 5, 2020)

Rustlings (October 5, 2020)

This past weekend, I traveled for the first time since January. I took all appropriate COVID-19 measures: sanitized before and after fueling my car, was privileged to have two nights lodging in a safe and beautiful home, and was masked during any contact with other...

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Rustlings (September 28, 2020)

Rustlings (September 28, 2020)

I guess it is time for a confession…and the accompanying challenge… The confession… I sat down at the piano last week for the first time in twenty-three years. I adjusted the stool, placed my fingers above the keys in middle C position, and attempted to play a scale....

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Rustlings (September 21, 2020)

Rustlings (September 21, 2020)

I have multiple friends (which in and of itself is a blessing) who daily journal their gratitudes. Each evening, as they reflect upon their day, they list three or four or five things for which they are grateful. I’m writing on Sunday evening, September 20, and...

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Rustlings (September 8, 2020)

Rustlings (September 8, 2020)

If your mailbox has been like my mailbox, it’s been void of the typical invitations. Oh, there have been a few, but the number of opportunities to gather, celebrate and mark the milestones of life have been few and far between this year. Graduation invitations,...

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Rustlings (August 31, 2020)

Rustlings (August 31, 2020)

Labor Day was a random marker during my childhood. My parents did not allow us to go swimming after Labor Day—even if temperatures were still in the 90s in the Mississippi Delta! To ensure our warmth, we had to start wearing t-shirts under our regular shirts after...

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Rustlings (August 24, 2020)

Rustlings (August 24, 2020)

The COVID Crisis has certainly stymied some routines and rituals. On the other hand, at First Baptist Greenville it has been a catalyst for creativity. Nowhere is this more vivid than during our MidWeek Fellowship Bible Study and Prayer service. Typically, we take a...

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Rustlings (August 17, 2020)

Rustlings (August 17, 2020)

Hold on Loosely—the 1981 rock hit by 38 Special—was blaring on my radio as I drove to work this morning. I bobbed my head, rhythmically patted the steering wheel, and mentally concurred with the good bit of advice. We tend to hold more tightly during a crisis. If we...

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Rustlings (August 10, 2020)

Rustlings (August 10, 2020)

Lessons from a Covid Haircut. To be safe, the hairstylist came to my condominium—masked and sanitized. In the open air of the parking lot, she turned on her clippers. I told her, “You know you are about to disappoint and delight two different populations at the same...

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Something to Say… In Song (Rustlings, 8/3/2020)

Something to Say… In Song (Rustlings, 8/3/2020)

Music has often been called ‘the universal language.’ Music speaks. Prophetic voices have embedded their messages in verses, choruses, rhymes and rhythms throughout the centuries. Musicians like Habakkuk and Isaiah of the Hebrew Scriptures, as well as Bob Dylan, Ani...

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Rustlings (July 27, 2020)

Rustlings (July 27, 2020)

Anyone living in the here and now knows the racial oppression and disparity that cuts its way through our nation’s history has festered and burst. The infectious nature of ‘us and them’ has truly invaded every cell of our society. The tension is felt in the market...

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Rustlings (July 20, 2020)

Rustlings (July 20, 2020)

Without endorsing any political party, I need to give a little credit to the late Congressman John Lewis. I was an enthusiastic, up and coming, young pastor when I met John Lewis. He was visiting Georgia State University’s campus. Several ‘young leaders’ were invited...

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Rustlings (July 13, 2020)

Rustlings (July 13, 2020)

Time is relative. It has never felt more relative—at least for me—than in recent months. As schedules are adjusted and normal activities are abated, the days and weeks seem to glacially drag by. (With South Carolina temperatures in the 90’s this week, ‘glacially’ may...

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Rustlings (June 29, 2020)

Rustlings (June 29, 2020)

Pastoral Pandemic Putt Putt. Yeah, it’s a thing. I just made it up. In conversations with church members via telephone, Zoom, Church Chat, Facebook Messenger, Livestream sidebars, etc., people consistently share their grief over lack of social contact. They...

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