An Ear To Hear

     Many people know what it means to have diminished ability to hear, particularly as we get older. Some of us get by just fine and others have to get some help. This has been the case at our house as Ginger has tried many hearing aids and is this week having cochlear implant surgery with the good folks at Vanderbilt Hospital. We are optimistic and of course would love to have your prayers. It will be a few weeks before the device is activated and then there is a learning curve to climb, but Ginger is sharp and I think she will be just fine.

Samatha Joseph

     Mission work has tremendous blessings in terms of spreading the gospel of Christ to the lost of this world (Matthew 28:18-20). But the blessings are not just for those who hear the Word. There are many blessings for those who are involved in doing the work. One of the greatest of these blessings is the getting to know and love the people we meet while doing this work.


     For the last few weeks I have been receiving physical therapy for my neck because, evidently, you don’t get to keep your thirty year old neck when you are in your sixties. That and the fact that when I was in the furniture business I would carry sofas and chairs on my head might have something to do with it.

Idea Sets

     Over the years I have thought about ideas as coming together in “sets.” I think the idea came from my junior high math teacher. Back then (way back then!) we were being introduced to what was called “new math.” The approach was so different that our teacher (who did a great job, I remember) was actively studying the material herself.

What is a Relationship Worth?

     Human beings, while individual creatures, have the ability to form relationships with each other. Some relationships are jump started, if you will, by familial connections. Most of us have a pretty good relationship with our parents and value that relationship highly. From the family flow other relationships with siblings and their extended families.


     We know that Paul said that the gospel was the “power of God to salvation for everyone who believes” (Romans 1:16). But before the gospel came many people viewed access to God as a limited thing. Indeed, part of the process God pursued from patriarchy through the Law of Moses to the gospel was to prepare mankind to understand the truth of Romans 1:16. The gospel’s power is in no way prescribed to any categorization of human beings.

Our Fall Gospel Meeting 2015

     Our Fall Gospel Meeting is just a few days away! This year’s fall meeting is going to be a bit different. We have three generations of gospel preachers all from the same family: Roy Lanier, Jr., Mark Hanstein and Will Hanstein. As is noted elsewhere in out bulletin the meeting begins on Sunday, September 27 with services at 9:00, 10:00 and 1:30 and continues Monday through Wednesday evenings with services at 7:00 each night.

What Do You Know?

     A long time back I was in graduate school trying to study history. One of the courses I had to take in the study of what we used to call “Western Civilization” was on the Enlightenment. It was taught by a mature woman who had a PhD in the field from Bryn Mawr College. She was very sharp and a fine teacher and was a person of faith which is not always the case in such environments, as the Enlightenment was an intellectual movement that had in part to do with casting doubt on the idea of Scripture as being inspired and authoritative.

Memory Loss

     One of the little tricks life plays as we get older has to do with our ability to remember. The mind God made for us is a marvelous thing but sometimes it seems to go its own way. Things and people that we “know we know” simply slip away from us sometimes for a moment, sometimes longer. There are times that we forget important things and we do that sometimes willfully because it suits us at the moment.

Thoughts From Trezevant

     I recently held a Gospel Meeting for the church in Trezevant, Tennessee. Trezevant is a small town four miles north of Atwood, Tennessee which was the place where Ginger and I lived when I was just beginning full time local work as a preacher. I had just finished a Bible program at Freed-Hardeman University (in those days a college) and was taking classes in graduate school. The elders at Atwood were gracious enough to hire me when I knew very little except that I wanted to preach and work for the Lord.