Words of Hope


“Words easy to be understood do often hit the mark; when high and learned ones do only pierce the air.”

English preacher, theologian, and author of nearly sixty titles, including Pilgrim’s Progress, John Bunyan, was born on this day in 1628 (died 1688).

I have sufficiently returned from over the river and through the woods.

You may now commence the Christmas decorating, the Christmas music, and the Christmas baking of things you plan to bring to my house.

You may also check out my Christmas wish list on Amazon.

Look, I’m just trying to be helpful. Just in case you want to be a blessing.

And that’s right, on my blog, it’s Christmas. Your traditions may vary, and that’s perfectly fine.

What a Thanksgiving weekend it was.

For my family, it was a little quieter this year with the noticeable absence of my stepfather. We’re already struggling

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with how to make Christmas less weird. We’ll get there, and we’re not the only ones to ever go through this. If you’ve been there, you know. If you haven’t, you will.

It was also a weekend when we lost Carol Brady (a.k.a. Florence Henderson), and Fidel Castro.

And a weekend when Miss Piggy saved Tony Bennett from falling off of a float in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. I am not making that up. Google it and watch the clip.

Kudos to Mr. Bennett for still performing at the age of 90.

Elsewhere families still argued over the election results and there are those expending energy hoping that a recount will turn the White House over to Hillary Clinton.

Santa really hates to disappointed the boys and girls but, in this case, you really should pull out the Sears and Roebuck Wishbook and make a secondary choice.

Again, I’m just trying to be helpful.

There’s no use getting bogged down in Bunyan’s Slough of Despond. Read the book, or the Cliff Notes. It will do you good.

Like Bunyan, I try to write to be understood. Often that means the fewer, and simpler, words, the better.

I can do that in my own writing. In my day-time survival job, I work for the government and frequently am handed back a document with instructions that basically say “add more bureaucracy.”

On a side note, I got involved in government and politics over thirty-five years ago because I felt that government is too big, it takes too much money, and it spends too much money.

Let’s just be clear, whatever cause or program you favor, too much of our money never makes it outside the Washington, D.C. beltway.

I tried to write that in simple enough words for even a Congresscritter to understand.

I digress.

In our house, the trees have started going up. It’s a process. We’re never done on the day after Thanksgiving. Mostly because for years our family has been involved in Glorious Christmas Nights at West End Assembly of God. It opens this week. My wife and son are in the cast. I have been previously but am currently on a hiatus of undetermined length.

Yesterday was the first Sunday of Advent on the Christian Church calendar. Traditions vary but the lighting of the first candle often signifies hope and looks at the Old Testament prophecies of the Coming of Christ. (Of which there are some 300-plus. Look them up, it will do you good).

I think we’ve all felt the struggles of 2016. As I said last week, it’s been a difficult year. We can hope that 2017 will be better.

But even as the earliest of believers found in the New Testament, the hope that the Christ Child brings is not that of an earthly kingdom.

Let that sink in.


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