Sermons in Stones

It was my last morning walk through the verdant Cotswold countryside before beating a hasty, virus-prompted retreat to the States.  I had left our little cottage in Buckland, turned down the bridle path leading to the adjacent village of Laverton, then climbed over a wooden stile into a grassy field full of sheep, heavy with…

Under House Arrest

Tired of being house-bound?  Enviously watching re-runs of “The Great Escape” and wishing you were Steve McQueen fleeing the prison camp on his iconic motorcycle?  Living under virtual house arrest is, well, surreal.  On the upside, what a boon to have quality time with the family.  And to fix things around the house and clear…

Nightmare Choices

As if the battle against coronavirus weren’t daunting enough, there is now the battle over when and how to reopen society so that people can get back to work.  It’s a battle of lives versus livelihoods.  For those of us older, retired folks with a secure income, saving lives seems paramount.  But for many out-of-work…

Fellowship in Isolation

During this pandemic isolation, I’ve been taking trips down memory lane, reading through journals from my travels when I was a single, carefree globetrotter.  But apparently less carefree than I’d remembered, having repeatedly recorded in my notes: “Feeling lonely.”  As a bachelor until I was 48, I knew what it meant to be lonesome.  Free…

Spiritual Distancing

In the “new normal” brought on by the coronavirus, we all know the rule: Keep six feet apart!  Contagion spreads from person to person as well as from surface to surface.  On our hurriedly-rescheduled flight back from England, it obviously wasn’t possible to keep six feet apart from fellow passengers.  And despite assurances that the…

Lockdown Church

You know it’s serious when even “church” is locked down!  Giving new meaning to “And Can It Be?”  Of course, worship itself isn’t being closed down.  In fact—praise God!—there seems to be more worship than ever, even on network television which normally flees from faith as if it were a virus.  Thanks to technology, we…

Zooming in on a Zoom World

Experiencing “Zoom fatigue” yet?  If you’re working from home, you may find that you are caught up in more Zoom meetings than ever in person at the office.  Or perhaps your days are filled with distance learning by Zoom.  Or you’re “Zooming” to worship with your scattered congregation on the Lord’s Day.  Then there are…