Category Archive: Family

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August 5, 2010

Sabbath for Me

Category: Ethics,Family :: Link :: Print

This morning, I finished reading Keri Wyatt Kent’s Rest: Living in Sabbath Simplicity.  I read it because I was interested in any suggestions she might make for making Sunday a restful and enjoyable day, but also because I was interested in seeing her approach to and defense of a Sabbath.

She talks a bit about the Fourth Commandment, though she stresses that she doesn’t want to fall into legalism and often seems to equate rules with legalism, which would surely be strange in other areas of life, wouldn’t it?  “‘Thou shalt not murder’ gives us a good impetus to avoid taking other people’s lives.  But we don’t want to get bogged down in all sorts of rules, such as ‘Don’t pull the trigger when the gun is pointing at your wife.’  We don’t want to be legalistic.”  Why are modern evangelicals so scared of commandments?

Most of her book, in fact, seems to me to ground a practice of “Sabbath-keeping” in the benefits such a practice has for us and for our families.  I suspect that’s an approach that many books on Sabbath take these days (as opposed to older books that grounded Sabbath keeping primarily on God’s command).  So she talks about the dangers that come from a lack of rest, the way in which even a workout coach tells you that your muscles have to work and then rest again and again to grow strong, how taking a day to rest can empower you for the week to come, and so forth.  A lot of that is good and true, but I wonder about this whole approach.

Sometimes you find the same approach taken in defenses of other things that Scripture requires.  For instance, when asked to justify “Thou shalt not commit adultery,” a Christian might go on to say that God knew, when He gave the commandment, all the bad consequences of such behavior.  Fornication and adultery lead to all sorts of misery.  They damage us and they damage other people, for generations to come.  The implication is that God decided to forbid such behavior because He knew that it would be bad for us or for others.

But it is God who so rules the world that there are such consequences — and not just consequences, but outright judgments.  Imagine telling a child that he shouldn’t backtalk.  “Why not?” the child asks.  “Well,” you say. “I’m telling you this for your own good.  Backtalking leads to all sorts of bad consequences.”  “Like what?”  “Well, like a sore bottom.”  “Wait a minute,” the child might respond.  “If I have a sore bottom as a consequence of backtalking, that’s only because you’re going to spank me.  How about this?  I backtalk and you don’t spank me.  Now is it okay to backtalk?”

It’s not as if God is locked into a certain world He doesn’t control, a world in which fornication automatically hurts people, so that the best He can do is warn people not to commit fornication because of those consequences.  The consequences don’t just happen; they happen because He sends them.  He rules things so that there are consequences.  He could have done otherwise, but He doesn’t want to.

And so, when He forbids something or commands something else, He doesn’t do so because He foresees that the one behavior will lead to misery and the other to happiness.  It is not the consequences that make adultery evil; adultery would be evil even if there were no consequences.  And there are consequences only because of He so rules that there will be.

So with the Fourth Word.  God didn’t command His people to “remember the Sabbath” because He knew that if He didn’t they’d get all tuckered out.  After all, God Himself “Sabbathed” on the seventh day of creation, and it wasn’t because He needed a break from His hard work.  Nor did Adam, who had been around for a little less than a day at that point and hadn’t done any real work yet.  That Sabbath wasn’t about catching your breath after a hard week’s work; it was about drawing near to God at the center of the world to say “Thank you” and to be nourished by Him before going to work.

If we want to defend “Sabbath keeping” today, we need to present a biblical argument, not a pragmatic one.  If we replace “Do it because God says to” (which requires us to discuss whether Sabbath keeping really is required in the New Testament and if it is, in what form and what the divinely mandated rules for Sabbath keeping are — the very topics you don’t find in Kent’s book) with “Do it because it’s good for you,” don’t we end up making the Sabbath — or any other obligation we defend that way — really about ourselves and our own sense of personal fulfillment?  It’s good to go to church and take part in the service, this book says, but sometimes you might end up skipping church if your son has soccer — that is, if you’ve determined something else is just as or even more fulfilling for yourself than church would be today.  And then who really is the authority in our lives?

I’ll add quickly that I have a couple more beefs with this book.  First, it’s disconcerting to me to hear Eugene Peterson’s The Message quoted as if it is Scripture. No, Jesus did not say, “Are you tired?  Worn out?  Burned out on religion?  Come to me.  Get away with me and you’ll recover your life.  I’ll show you how to take a real rest” (Matt. 11:28, cited on p. 9).  Nor did He says, “Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions” (Mt. 6:33, cited on p. 201).

Second, I’m not a fan of Rob Bell’s approach to Scripture, which seems to find new meanings by drawing on (likely post-AD 70) rabbinic interpretations or … from who knows where?  For instance, it simply isn’t the case that (as Kent cites Bell as saying) the name YHWH is “actually four Hebrew vowels” (200).   Those are consonants.  It isn’t the case that “the name was so sacred, it was actually unpronounceable” (200).  True, the Jews stopped pronouncing the name, but we have no reason to think that it wasn’t pronounced by Moses or David or Malachi or any of the Jews in the Old Testament.  The failure to pronounce the name wasn’t a matter of obedience or because it was really too sacred to say.  God taught Israel to say it.  And where in the world does Bell get the idea that “the name of God … is the sound of breathing” (200)?

Third, several times in this book, Kent cites Jewish writers, as if the Jewish understanding of the Torah is really the correct one.  In the light of the things Jesus says about the Pharisees and their traditions and understanding that Judaism after AD 70 was quite different from anything Moses taught, I find this approach generally unhelpful.  Of course, the rabbis may shed light on Scripture as they expound it.  But I don’t assume that an interpretation is correct because it’s a Jewish interpretation.

That said, there are some suggestions for making Sunday a special day in your home, which Christian families might benefit from, as well as some practical tips on rest throughout the week.

Posted by John Barach @ 1:47 pm | Discuss (0)
June 8, 2009

Fantasy Virtue

Category: Family,Theology - Pastoral :: Link :: Print

In the second issue of the Mars Hill Audio Journal, there is an interview with the British mystery writer P. D. James.  The interviewer, Ken Myers, asks James why evil characters are easier to depict than good characters.

James responds by saying that evil characters are often more dramatic.  They commit dramatic crimes, such as murder.  Virtuous characters, on the other hand, are often less dramatic.  A man may have courage in dramatic situations: the man who runs into a burning building to rescue a child.  But most often, courage is expressed in small, undramatic situations and in ways that no one else might notice: the woman who bravely faces a day in which she must carry out a number of duties in spite of ongoing terrible pain.

What James says about virtue resonates with something I’ve noticed recently myself.  Paul tells husbands to love their wives, “just as Christ also loved the church and gave himself for her” (Eph. 5:25).  Husbands are to model themselves after Christ, giving themselves, pouring themselves out, laying down their lives for their wives.

But more than once, when I’ve said that, I’ve received a certain response.  A man will begin talking about how he would be willing, should the need arise, to give his life for his wife.  If, say, they were out somewhere and someone held them up at gunpoint, he would be willing to die so that his wife could get away.  He would be willing, in other words, to do some dramatic act of self-sacrifice to rescue his wife should the need arise.

What strikes me is how common this response is and how unrealistic it really is.  For some reason, it seems to me, we have a tendency to romanticize virtue, to dream of dramatic acts of virtue, to fantasize about being dramatically virtuous, and then to feel good about our willingness to perform such acts if they were ever to be required of us.  Our fantasies allow us to feel virtuous without actually having to act virtously.

In fact, we are not likely to be called to risk our lives for our wives in such dramatic ways.   What is far more likely to happen is that our wives are going to want us to do the dishes or help clean the house or take out the trash or play with the children or sit and talk when we would rather not be bothered.

“Oh, sure,” we say.  “I would lay down my life for my wife, if someone broke into my house and threatened us.”  We pretend we’re willing to do the great thing.  But all the while, we’re not willing to do the little thing, to pour out our lives for our wives when all they require is a bit of time and attention.  We would rather fantasize about being dramatically Christ-like than actually get up, turn off the TV, and serve our wives.

Service seems too undramatic, too ordinary, too humdrum, too much to ask of such virtuous people as we dream ourselves to be.  And so we affirm Paul’s words about self-giving love, romanticize them by fantasizing about virtually impossible situations in which we could obey them, and … fail to heed them at all in the real situations in which we live.

As P. J. O’Rourke put it, “Everybody wants to save the earth; nobody wants to help Mom do the dishes.”

Posted by John Barach @ 4:03 pm | Discuss (0)
February 9, 2009

Children & Other People

Category: Family,Theology - Pastoral :: Link :: Print

Read this.  If you need more incentive, here’s a paragraph, but you won’t appreciate it properly unless you’ve read the rest of the article:

I realize more and more that the gift of children is the gift of life. Children, my children, are sabbath life to and for the tired and weary. How easy would it be to come home and collapse on the couch and do nothing? How tempting would it be to sit in silence after a long day? But my children teach me to live. They teach me to laugh. They teach me to dance, to move my body, to sing, to pray, to ask questions, to read between the lines, to demand more from the world, more from my time, more from life. They won’t just leave me alone. They won’t let me miss life; they love me too much for that.

When you’re done reading the blog entry I linked, you can go on and read Toby’s posts on “A Theology of Other People.”  And when the latest Credenda comes online, go and read Toby’s article on “Other People” there, too.

Posted by John Barach @ 5:55 pm | Discuss (0)
March 10, 2008


Category: Family :: Link :: Print

Vance 0051.jpg

Posted by John Barach @ 3:10 pm | Discuss (4)
March 1, 2008

Baby Boy

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Moriah and I are pleased to announce the birth of our baby boy.  He arrived at 5:12 on Friday afternoon, weighing 9 lbs 4 oz. and measuring 21 inches long.  He appears to have inherited my chubby cheeks.  Mother and baby (and father!) are doing well, and Aletheia, the big sister, is thrilled to have a baby brother.

We’ve named him John Vance Barach, which is also my name and my father’s name, but we’ll call him by his middle name: Vance.  We’ve taken some pictures but don’t have them ready to post online yet.

God has been very good to us, and we’re thankful.

Posted by John Barach @ 6:38 pm | Discuss (10)
October 3, 2007

Children & Sleep

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In 2004, the National Sleep Foundation published the results of its study on children and sleep, based in interviews with 1473 adults with small children at home.  The study found that 47 percent of toddlers and 36 percent of preschoolers woke at least once per night and needed an adult’s help in order to get back to sleep.

For some reason, however, many parents seem to think that their children ought to be sleeping straight through the night without waking up at all or that if the children do wake up, they should be able to get back to sleep without needing Mom or Dad to help them.

But as Elizabeth Pantley points out, “If up to 50 percent of the population does any particular thing, I don’t see how it could be considered anything but normal” (The No-Cry Sleep Solution for Toddlers and Preschoolers, p. 143).  What’s strange is not that the children wake up and can’t get back to sleep without an adult’s help.  What’s strange is that the parents think this situation is strange.

Posted by John Barach @ 2:46 pm | Discuss (6)
September 10, 2007

What You Love

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Here’s another old entry, this one from Douglas Wilson.  I’ll quote it in full:

Once there was a father who struck his son every day. Most of the time the blows were made out of words, but other times the striking was more tangible. He did not have to look for opportunities to beat him; they appeared to arise naturally. Sometimes the father did this because he lost his temper, while at other times it occurred out of simple force of habit.

The thing that bothered the father the most was that the son did not appear to love what the father loved. He did not appear to care for the things that the father cared for. The father was very meticulous with his tools, while the son was very careless with them. The father insisted on being punctual with everything, while the son was chronically late. The father demanded that the son sit up straight at the dinner table, while the son appeared to love nothing more than slouching.

It should be obvious that the son was in the wrong on most or all of these disputes. It is better to care for your tools than not, it is rude to keep others waiting, and of course it is bad manners to droop at the table. But the more the father reproached and demanded, the worse his son got.

One day, after the son had grown, father and son had their last fight. I am not sure what it was about, but it was very much like all their previous fights, with this one exception — it was the last one they had. The son left home, never to return.

The father would think about this often, and he would torment himself with questions. Why could my son not love what I love? Finally, he sought out the counsel of a friend, something which he actually should have done many years before. When he presented this question to the friend — “Why did my son reject all that I taught him? Why didn’t he love what I loved?” — he was astonished at the friend’s reply. “Oh, but he does. He loves to quarrel.”

Posted by John Barach @ 12:10 pm | Discuss (0)
July 11, 2007

My Life for Yours

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The other day, I mentioned that Thomas Howard’s Hallowed Be This House is the source of the title of Douglas Wilson’s book My Life for Yours.  Indeed, it is.  That line runs throughout Howard’s book, as he shows that the home, viewed rightly, is a school in the mysteries of the gospel and the gospel-shaped life.

Here’s how he introduces this theme:

The mystery which was supposed to be at work in the life of Israel … and which was made present to them in the rite of the Tabernacle, was the mystery upon which all life proceeds and which will never be outgrown since it is there at the root of all things.  It is the mystery of My Life For Yours.  It is expressed in the words, “I owe my life to you, and I lay down my life for you.”

No one has ever drawn a single breath on any other basis.  No child has ever received life to begin with without a “laying down” of life by the two people to whom he owes his conception, and by the laying down of his mother’s life for months in bearing and nourishing him.  And somebody had to lay down his life for the child year after year in caring for him and training him and providing for him.  And no one has ever sat down to the smallest pittance of food that he did not owe to somebody’s life having been laid down, if it was only a prawn or a lettuce leaf; to say nothing of the work (a form of laid-down life) somebody had to do to plant and cultivate and pick and market the leaf, or catch the prawn.  No one has ever learned a single thing that he did not owe to somebody’s having taught him or helped him one way or another.  Morning, noon, and night, we owe it all to others.  My Life For Yours.  I owe my life to you, and I lay mine down for you (pp. 23-24).

In the course of the book, Howard develops this theme from the front door through the living room and the kitchen to the bedroom, where we have both the entrance into life and the exit.  My temptation is to quote it all to you, but instead I’ll just recommend that you pick up this book, along with Wilson’s, and spend some enjoyable time meditating on how the gospel is lived out in the rooms of your house and how your home is God’s school of charity, as Howard puts it.  And may those meditations be words on which we can act.

Posted by John Barach @ 2:43 pm | Discuss (0)
July 9, 2007

Lying Babies?

Category: Family :: Link :: Print

An article in the July 1 issue of The Telegraph, a British newspaper, reports on a study by Dr. Vasudevi Reddy, who is in the University of Portsmouth’s psychology department.  Her findings are based on her study of more than fifty children and on interviews with parents.

One of her findings was that babies as young as six months old lie to their parents by pretending to cry or to laugh in order to get attention from them.  Reddy says:

Fake crying is one of the earliest forms of deception to emerge, and infants use it to get attention even though nothing is wrong. You can tell, as they will then pause while they wait to hear if their mother is responding, before crying again.  It demonstrates they’re clearly able to distinguish that what they are doing will have an effect. This is essentially all adults do when they tell lies, except in adults it becomes more morally loaded.

On at least two blogs, the Triablogue and the Riddleblog, this article is cited in connection with original sin.  “See?” these bloggers say.  “Psychological studies are only now catching up to what we knew all along from the Bible.”

Now I don’t deny that children lie or that “those who speak lies go astray from birth” (Ps. 58:3).  But I wonder about the validity of this study.  Reddy says that infants as young as six months old practice fake crying “to get attention even though nothing is wrong.”  But who says nothing is wrong?  Reddy?  The parents she interviewed?

Perhaps she concludes that nothing is wrong because the child will cry a bit and then stop to see if the parents are responding.  But does that confirm that nothing is really wrong?  Perhaps all it confirms is that the child is hoping for a response.  If the parents don’t respond, the baby will cry some more.  But if you ignore a baby long enough, eventually it will lapse into silence.  (But what a terrible thing to do to a baby!  Why would you want to teach a baby that its cries will go unheard, that Mom and Dad’s ears aren’t open when their children cry?)

In fact, if a baby is crying because it wants the parents to respond, then I’d be inclined to say that something is wrong.  The baby is lonely.  The baby wants cuddling and love.  It feels a lack in its life, and so it cries.  I see no evidence that the cry is itself deceptive, that the baby is actually feeling great and senses no lack at all and is perfectly happy but decides to cry anyway in order to deceive the parents into giving it attention.

How much more, then, with laughter?  If a child laughs, how could one possibly prove that the child laughed in order to get attention, not because it was happy?  And why not both?  If you read something funny and you laugh out loud, not only because you enjoy what you’re reading but also because you hope your wife will ask what’s so funny and you’ll be able to read it aloud to her, is your laughter a lie?  I’m not convinced.  But even if it is, how could you ever prove that that’s what the six-month old baby is doing when he laughs?

Or take coughing.  When my daughter was very young, I had a cough.  I was sitting in the car, coughing intermittently, while I waited for Moriah to come back from shopping.  Suddenly I heard a cough in the backseat.  Aletheia wasn’t sick.  She was just mimicking me.  Was she lying?  Was she pretending to be sick in order to deceive me into giving her attention?  I don’t think so.  I think she was mimicking me because she had just learned to make that sound and because mimicking adults is both fun and, judging by her reactions, funny (or maybe Aletheia only pretends to laugh in order to manipulate me, if you believe some studies).

Again, I’m not suggesting that infants are incapable of sin.  I am suggesting that whatever sin they’re capable of isn’t as easy to detect as this article indicates.  And I’m concerned about the effects of an application of the doctrine of original sin via this study to our children.  That is, I’m concerned that parents, motivated by a confession of original sin and hearing that children cry or laugh in order to deceive, may fail to respond to their babies when they laugh or, perhaps worse, when they cry (“He’s just crying.  He’s exercising his lungs.  He’s trying to deceive and manipulate me.  Nothing’s really wrong”).

For more on the story, see this article, which quotes Reddy as defining “fake” crying as something more “calculated” than the usual cries of distress.  She backs that definition up with an example from a mother who thought the crying sounded “put on” and noticed that the child would pause in crying “which seemed rather like waiting to see if it worked.”  That all sounds remarkably subjective to me and may reflect the beliefs the mother already had.  That is, if the mother already believed that her child’s cries were “put on,” then the fact that the child is quiet sometimes constitutes “proof” of what the mother already thinks.

In this blog entry, however, it sounds as if the data Reddy is considering includes “a variety of acts, such as teasing, pretending, distracting and concealing, which are not typically considered in relation to human deception….  Infants and toddlers seem to be able to communicate false information (about themselves, about shared meanings and about events) as early as true information.”

If that’s the kind of data that Reddy is considering, then, while it’s true that infants can communicate false information (e.g., my daughter’s coughing isn’t the result of a cold), their doing so doesn’t really constitute (sinful) deception.  There’s nothing sinful about pretending.  In fact, I’ve encouraged my daughter to communicate such “false information,” by pretending with her.  I’m not really a monster who’s going to eat her up.  I’m not really a horse that she can ride.  She isn’t really a carpenter, even though she has a hammer.  And so forth.  But no one considers “false information” of this sort to be sinful deception.

Perhaps, then, the reports about this article aren’t reflecting exactly what Reddy has been studying.  Reddy herself has not said that the “deception” she’s talking about is bad, and so it may simply be that some Christians are drawing the wrong conclusions from her study.

Still, I’m concerned about parents who hear about Reddy’s study and who think about it in light of the church’s confession concerning original sin and who then regard their children’s communication with suspicion (“Is she manipulating me?  Deceiving me?  Is this just fake crying?”).  That’s not only an abuse of the doctrine of original sin; it’s also a failure to love, just as it would be if I regarded everything my wife says with suspicion because, after all, she’s been tainted by original sin, too.  Love thinks no evil, believes all things, hopes all things.

Posted by John Barach @ 6:14 pm | Discuss (4)
April 14, 2007


Category: Family,Miscellaneous :: Link :: Print

As part of my imimigration process, I had to go to Portland to have my “biometrics” taken this week.  For those of you who aren’t familiar with immigration-speak, that’s fingerprints, signature, and a photo.  Yes, for all of that I had to drive four hours to Portland, stay overnight, and then drive four hours back.

The trip was uneventful.  Well, except for the event at the start.  I tried to play a CD and discovered that the player was jammed somehow.  It’s been doing that on occasion recently, but this time I couldn’t even make it eject my six-pack of CDs so that I could start over.  I’ll have to see if I can get the dealer to do it for free as they did the first time it happened.

So instead of listening to the CDs I’d picked, I had to listen instead to some old cassettes.  Several of these I hadn’t heard in years.  I started off with The Rainmakers’ The Good News and the Bad News, which I’d remembered (and still enjoyed) for Bob Walkenhorst‘s clever lyrics, moved on later to The Innocence Mission‘s self-titled album, which I appreciating more now than when I first bought it.

On the way home, I played Elvis Costello’s Spike and Peter Case’s great Peter Case Sings Like Hell.  When I was in my late teens, I wanted to be Peter Case.  I saw him in concert at the Edmonton Folk Festival, where other performers included Lucinda Williams, Sugar Blue, T-Bone Burnett, Roger McGuinn, Bob Neuwirth, David Mansfield, and a whole bunch of other people who had played on albums together and who sat in on each other’s sessions during the festival.  Ever since then, I’ve been playing my own version of “Walkin’ Bum,” which I heard Peter Case perform, though my performances out on Whyte Avenue in Edmonton weren’t nearly as good as his version on this cassette.  No wonder I didn’t really make a lot of money by busking.

I arrived at the USCIS office in downtown Portland at about 7:30 and had to wait in the cold wind until they opened the doors at 8:00.  I had expected that, in spite of my 8:00 AM appointment, I’d be there until at least noon.  Imagine my surprise when I walked out the doors again at 8:19!

But as I stood in line inside the building, waiting for my appointment, I noticed something which struck me as funny at the time.  Inside, where the prospective immigrants sat waiting to be called and fingerprinted, there were some rows of chairs, all facing a television.  What would you expect to be on the TV?  Perhaps you’d expect something about what it means to be an American citizen.

Well, yes and no.  It turned out to be the movie Footloose.  The title song was playing as I stood in the line, and by the time I sat down we were hearing the sermon that opens the movie.  The movie, in case you haven’t seen it, is about a fundamentalist town and a boy who moves to town and introduces dancing to the teenagers and breaks apart the fundamentalist culture that had prevailed.  When you think about it, perhaps this movie really did reveal something of what American culture is all about.

Instead of heading straight home, I walked a few blocks and a few blocks over to Powell’s City of Books where I waited a few more minutes in the cold until they opened at 9:00.  I spent about five hours there, not only because there are so many books to look at but also because it was remarkably hard to find what I was looking for.  I’d made up a list of books I wanted to look for and had checked the online database to find where the books were located, but a database is one thing and a book shelf is another and the two didn’t always correspond.  In the end, though, I walked off with a glorious haul.

After a brief stop at the Whole Foods store, I poked around Everyday Music, where I picked up James Hunter‘s People Gonna Talk, All the Roadrunning by Mark Knopfler and Emmylou Harris, and Joe Henry‘s wonderful Scar, which I’ve been listening to again and again today.  And then I headed for home.

Oh, along the way, I heard to a couple of Biblical Horizons conference lectures by Peter Leithart, one on Calvin’s view of the state and the other on how revivalism shifted the church’s story from the theocratic one about Jesus’ ruling as king over the world to the democratic story about the growth of individual freedoms.  I also played some old Mars Hill tapes, one of which opened with a helpful discussion of sentimentalism by Alan Jacobs.

I’ve often heard people criticize sentimentalism, but I haven’t always been sure they know what they’re talking about.  For instance, the charge of “sentimentalism” often gets levelled against Charles Dickens but I’m not persuaded the charge really fits.  Jacobs defines sentimentalism as a wallowing in emotion for the sake of emotion and doing so in a way that cannot stand up to evaluation.

He was reviewing The Bridges of Madison County, which is not only sentimental but downright maudlin, and pointed out that the reader isn’t supposed to think about the story; he (or more likely, she) is simply supposed to feel something.  The more you think about it, the less it “works.”  Is it really possible, for instance, that this four-day affair could help strengthen the woman’s marriage?  If you’re contemplating adultery, Jacobs said, you might want to think so and this book might encourage you in that direction, but it doesn’t stand up to evaluation.  If assessment kills an emotion, he said, then it deserves to die.

And then I arrived home to my wife and daughter, whom I’d missed.

Posted by John Barach @ 3:42 pm | Discuss (1)
April 2, 2007

Klamath Falls

Category: Church,Family :: Link :: Print

Yesterday, our entire church moved to a different location.  And not just a different location: a different town in a different county 

We normally meet at the Griffin Creek Grange, just to the west of Medford.  But due to a quilt show, we had to find a new place to meet.  Most Sundays, one family and a single guy come to Medford for church from Klamath Falls, just over the mountain from us.  It’s about an hour and a half drive and during the winter it can be a bit treacherous, but they come as often as they can.  So this Sunday, we went to them.

Two of our member families are on vacation, but Moriah and I went to Klamath Falls on Saturday and the other families came on Sunday morning.  We had a very good time visiting with the people who live out there.

They had invited lots of people to church and advertised on the cable TV bulletin board and so we ended up with more visitors than regulars, which meant that I had to spend some time before the service talking a bit about our liturgy: what we do and why.  They seemed to enjoy it, and all of them stayed for a meal after the service.

Posted by John Barach @ 3:18 pm | Discuss (3)
March 2, 2007

Your Temper & Welcome

Category: Family,Theology,Uncategorized :: Link :: Print

Something for fathers by Doug Wilson: “Your Temper is a Doctrine of God.”

And, though Paul Buckley has been blogging since September, I only just discovered his blog.  Paul’s a journalist who used to work for the Dallas Morning News and is now a student at Westminster in Philly.  I met him at a conference a few years back.  So welcome to the world of blogging, Paul!

Posted by John Barach @ 1:31 pm | Discuss (0)

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