After many months of searching her lineage back to an American Revolutionary War Patriot,  Brenda Cunningham finally found the proof she needed for DAR membership.  Both Brenda and her daughter, Amanda, became members of the James K. Polk Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution last Oct…

"Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

On December 7, 1941, Japanese forces staged a surprise attack on the American naval fleet at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. In a two-hour attack, Japanese planes sank or damaged 18 warships and destroyed 164 aircraft. Over 2,400 servicemen and civilians lost their lives. The very next day, the United…

By chapter nine, the last chapter of Amos, God is through delivering His promises of judgment and punishment to His chosen people.  The window of opportunity for repentance and restoration has closed.  There is a lesson there for us.  Do not presume upon the goodness, mercy, and grace of God…

The front range was glistening with fresh snow as we traveled north out of Denver. Well over a foot of snow had recently blanketed the area. My mind drifted back to the many winters I spent along the front range. During my twenty years in the area, I lived in Dacono, Frederick, Erie, and Lov…

Spring is approaching! The first day of Spring is on March 19 this year! With Spring comes new life, new growth, and new opportunity. This year, I highly encourage you to incorporate more green in your life! Gardening, hiking, and spending time outdoors are just a few great ways to recalibra…

My head felt like someone had shaken it until it bruised inside. My throat was so sore that it was hard to swallow. I alternated between feeling like I would burst into flames and intense chills. I couldn’t remember when I had felt this bad. When I first started feeling sick, I was returning…

After many months of searching her lineage back to an American Revolutionary War Patriot,  Brenda Cunningham finally found the proof she needed for DAR membership.  Both Brenda and her daughter, Amanda, became members of the James K. Polk Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution last Oct…

What is your favorite season? I've always been a big fan of spring. There is nothing like the anticipation of springtime after three long months of winter. Crisp air, budding trees, greening grass, and blooming flowers make spring an amazing time. I have never liked winter. Short days and co…

Our Mena Community Chorus is part of a concert at UA Rich Mountain on Thursday, February 13th, the day before Valentine‘s Day, a day of love.  Last Monday, at our rehearsal, our director, Stephanie Tapley, requested that we send her photos of ourselves with those we love, to be shown as a ba…

Clothes are expensive. That’s just a fact. The heavier duty they are, the pricier they are, especially jeans. So when our clothes start to wear and tear, I have to get a little creative to make them last as long as they can. I’m very glad that my mother taught me skills on the farm as a chil…

The little red-haired girl crept to the back of the hallway and sat with her back against the door of the linen closet. The soaring music of the movie had started, and the story scrolled up the screen of the 19-inch Zenith television. A tiny silver spacecraft races through space while being …

Amos was an uneducated farmer, but the Lord called him to perform the function of a prophet.  His prophetic words recorded in Amos 3 ought to inspire us and motivate us to heed what the Lord says.   Chapter 3 begins with the Lord reminding the nation of Israel that He had chosen them to be H…

“A fist kissed his chin as a knee was raised into his stomach. Someone grabbed a handful of hair and yanked his head backwards twisting his neck; another fist and another fist crushing his nose, loosening his teeth. He wrenched free from his brothers only to collapse double-over to the groun…

Happy New Year! Although I can’t believe 2020 is here already, I am excited to see what the New Year has to offer. Many folks will be thinking on the same thing this week: New Years resolutions. Some common resolutions include losing weight, toning up, setting financial goals, or picking up …

Another year has arrived.  It is a time of celebration for the present, of reflection for the past, and of hope for the future.  In some areas, the beginning of the year marks new laws going into effect or the inauguration of some local officials.  And it also means some retailers are now we…

The young man stood at the counter, ordering a gallon of paint. “I need a gallon of synthetic enamel for a 1971 Oldsmobile,” he said to the man behind the counter. “It is brown, and the paint code is 68.” 

Amos was a shepherd and grower of sycamore figs.  He lived in the southern kingdom of Judah, not far from Jerusalem.   God sent him to the northern kingdom of Israel with a message of judgment because the people had rejected God and turned to idols.   Amos began with pronouncements of judgme…

Ahaziah, son of Ahab and Jezebel, reigned for about two years as the king of Israel.   Ahaziah was a worshipper of Baal and a doer of wickedness just like his parents.  Apparently, he was very, very wicked, because Jehoshaphat, king of Judah, had his work destroyed by the Lord simply because…

The air was heavy, and thick clouds blotted out stars. The Hyundai’s headlights seemed to disappear as they tried to illuminate the jet-black highway. My granddaughter and I were up and on the road before dawn. She had spent a week with us, but now we were on our way to her home in Louisiana…

Ahab, king of Israel and Jehoshaphat, king of Judah, were planning a joint attack against Benhadad at Ramoth-Gilead.  Jehoshaphat wisely suggested that they inquire of Jehovah first.   Ahab gathered his 400 prophets, who seem to be more aligned with Baal than Jehovah.   They were most aligne…

“The priests will carry the Ark of the Lord, the Lord of all the earth. As soon as their feet touch the water, the flow of water will be cut off upstream, and the river will stand up like a wall.”

Mrs. Langford stood in front of the class lecturing on whatever poem we were studying that day. But my mind was miles away. I was interested in space, science, sports, and that one particular beautiful blonde girl. “Old poetry was boring,” I thought. My grade in the class reflected my intere…

Cautiously moving forward, he loosened his sword belt allowing it to fall to the ground. Then uneasily, he worried at first with one sandal and then the next. Unarmed and barefooted, he made his approach toward the God of all creation. The God that spoke the worlds into existence, hung the s…

The sunshine felt good as we headed down the trail on a crisp November afternoon. Leaves drifted down in the light breeze, and soft muted fall colors were all around us. The light of the sun filtered through the tree foliage on each side of the trail. I was finally on the trail to Whitaker P…

The wicked King Ahab, in control of the whole country, began to covet the vineyard of a man named Naboth.  Ahab offered to purchase the vineyard, but Naboth refused the offer because it was the inheritance of his ancestors.   Ahab decided to pout, and he pouted so effectively that his wicked…

Do you know anyone who talks too much?  Do you ever talk too much yourself?  Has talking too much ever brought trouble on anyone you know?   I must confess that I have to answer yes to all three questions.  Solomon and the Holy Spirit point out this problem in Ecclesiastes 10.   We ought to …

The older Chevy van pulled into my driveway as I was installing a windshield. The van’s owner, Tom, climbed out of the van and came over to talk with me. He was having a problem with the windshield and wanted to see what we could do about it. We discussed the issue and scheduled a time to wo…

“It doesn’t make any sense. Our farm is here. Our house is here. All of your son’s friends are here,” he insisted as he slammed their bedroom door. “It’s not time to move. We don’t just up and leave. What about all of our hard work?” Her husband was angry and short sighted, but she knew he w…

Gripping a shard of broken pottery, he picked at his festering sores. He was seated in the ashes of yesterday’s disappointments surrounded by the hopelessness of another waning day. Yesterday looked like today which resembled tomorrow. His family was destroyed. His wealth was depleted. His r…

A gray streak shot across the driveway as I pulled my shop truck up to the door of my business. “What was that,” I thought, as I got out of my truck and unlocked the door. It was time to open my shop for the day. I had a very busy day scheduled and was in a hurry to get started. As I turned …

False pride and rebellion against authority cause many of our problems.  Adam and Eve rebelled against God’s clear command.  I have inherited that bent toward rebellion and not only am I inclined to rebel, sadly I do rebel.  It is a sad fact of human nature, that when someone tells us what t…

Standing by himself, he tugged at his clothing trying somehow to just disappear. Abandoned and alone, fear choked out faith and depression robbed him of reason. He had fled a defeated foe and was hiding from an imagined fate. He was running from the Queen. The prophet of old was hiding in a cave.

The tiny white ball of fluff raced pell-mell around the room. His ears flopped about, and his tail wagged furiously. Our Golden Retriever, Maggie, was meeting this little dynamo for the first time. The puppy jumped on Maggie and played with her tail. They had a great time together. We were h…

Solomon, The Teacher/Preacher, dealt with a subject in Ecclesiastes 7, which has been a hot topic of conversation in every century.  Ecclesiastes 7:10 reads, “Don’t ask why the old days were better than now, because that is a foolish question.” (CJB)  Everyone has certainly heard someone spe…

My eyes were glued to the screen as I watched the enormous crawler-transporter with the Saturn V rocket move slowly towards the launch pad at Launch Complex 39. The crawler is 131 feet long and 114 feet wide. Weighing over six million pounds, the crawler moves with the power of 16 diesel loc…

Most of us, including myself, place a far greater value on possessions than we should.  The Bible has a lot to say about possessions, namely our attitudes toward them and what we do in order to obtain and keep them.  Material possessions are not bad, in fact they are necessary for our surviv…

Today is the first day of Autumn one of my favorite seasons of the year. Before we know it, we will be experiences colder weather. We get the opportunity to experience the beauty of nature as the different changes take place. The beauty of the changing off the color of the leaves, no more gr…

I went to the Hot Springs farmers market at 7am on Saturday morning. Between 8am and noon five of us stood behind different tables in the interest of providing food/health education to folks coming to the market. We have always called this annual event “Food Day.”  So maybe people would come…

The stately two-story house stood on the banks of Lake Houston. In the forty years since she had been lovingly built by her family, she has never seen anything like it. Wave after wave of heavy rains batter her. The winds are swirling around her, and she is creaking and groaning as she strug…

Most of us view vows much less seriously than we should.  The Bible has a lot to say about vows.  They are neither good nor evil, but we should be very careful with them.  In Ecclesiastes 5, Solomon examines the wisdom, or rather the foolishness, of making vows to the Lord.  We have all witn…

Ecclesiastes is a book about real life.  Technology has changed the way we do everything, but some things have not changed.  Human nature has not changed.  Truth has not changed.  The emotions and dilemmas faced by Solomon 3000 years ago mirror ours very, very closely.  Ecclesiastes 3:1-11 i…

Water trickled down the wall following the twists and turns of the mildewed stone. It wasn’t a great amount of water only a few droplets seeping through the ceiling of the cell. It wasn’t fresh water. It was the sweating of the rock, condensation that formed between the crevices, and pooled …

James was nervous as he entered the school building. He was always nervous on the first day of school. James found his way to the sixth-grade schoolroom. As he walked through the door a deep male voice boomed a welcome, asked his name, and directed him to a desk. Now James was more nervous t…

She never thought that her life would end this way. She never intended on getting caught up in this relationship, with this man. She had no idea that things would turn out so badly. It seemed innocent enough at first. He was kind. He listened to her. But none of that mattered now. He was now…

The bright sunlight glistened off of the bright white buildings along bathhouse row in Hot Springs. As we walked along the street, I tried to imagine what it was like during the heyday of bathhouses. I am intrigued by the history of Hot Springs.

Solomon hated all that he had worked for.  That is a blunt statement, but he wrote it in Ecclesiastes 2.  It would be more understandable if he had said he hated the work he had to do to get the stuff, but he said he hated the fruit of his labor. Still more puzzling, is his statement that he…

The white envelope stared up at me from my desk. It seemed to be mocking me. The envelope had been lying there on my desk for three weeks. Every time I sat down at my desk, the first thing I noticed was that annoying envelope. I knew that I had to do something about that envelope.

Solomon (The Preacher of Ecclesiastes) has examined the meaning of life from virtually every angle.  He had the wisdom, the money, and the time to try anything and everything his heart desired.    In Ecclesiastes chapter one and the first part of chapter two, Solomon has declared that everyt…

She stood waiting. She waited with the patience that only a mother could possess. She waited to hear if there was any help to be had. She wasn’t a stranger to the courts and the tribunal. She had petitioned them often. At first the men of the city responded, some even were genuine but over t…

Solomon, the wisest man who ever lived has written a terrific little book in which he searches for meaning in life.  His search makes him very transparent to the whole world. He refers to himself as The Teacher or The Preacher.  Solomon and Ecclesiastes have a great deal to say to every gene…