Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Annual Conference and other assorted stuff

I keep saying I am going to do a better job writing, but then life gets in the way. In the last two weeks a great deal has taken place. Recovery is getting better, but every now and then I am reminded that I had surgery 3 weeks ago. I was able to play golf (9 holes on a very short course) on Monday, but I have been stiff and sore ever since.

The hardest part of the last week and a half is finding out that two families that I am close with are suffering through significant marital issues. Neither are members of my church and it has been interesting to see how their respective churches have handled the situations. Please pray for those families.

We began our summer series on Paul on Sunday and we looked at the transformation that took place in his life. I do not preach this weekend, but on the 28th I will continue the series by looking at what Paul means by Justification by Faith. Hope you will come join us.

I listened to a couple of books and finished another. Both of the books that I listened to were somewhat disappointing. I have read most of Steve Berry's other books and really enjoyed them. The Romanov Prophecy was, a big disappointment. Now I need to say that I listened to an abridgement, and often I find that really impacts a book, and that may have been the problem here. The book just didn't flow well. It seemed to jump and material seemed to be missing. The story is about the desire of Russia to find re-establish the Tsar, and the search begins to find relatives of Nicholas II. The book picks up on the theory that two of Nicholas children survived the assassination by the Bolsheviks at Yekaterinburg, July 17, 1918. The story is a little far fetched. In 2008 DNA testing proved that the entire family died on that bloody night.

The second book had the exact opposite problem. Thuderstruck, by Erik Larson (author of Devil in the White City and Issac's Storm). I loved both of his previous works, this book however gets lost in a haze of irrelevant details. In his introduction he warns the reader of his chasing many rabbits, and he certainly is guilty! Thuderstruck is about Marconi, the inventor of wireless communication and Hawley Crippen a rather unlikely murderer who is caught because of Marconi's invention. The book was fascinating, it just overwhelmed me with irrelevant minutia.

The third book was lent to me by a friend: Here If You Need Me by Kate Braestrup. I have to admit that I am not a big fan of soppy love stories, especially if the center around a minister (What was the name of that stupid TV show???), but this book really surprised me. It is the story of Kate and her family and how their lives have changed and morphed following the death of her husband in a tragic accident. Kate, following his death, goes to seminary and becomes a chaplain for the Maine Warden Service. She is an excellent writer and her story needs to be told over and over again. I highly recommend this book.

Next week I take Lindsey to get registered for Indiana University, and then I get to go to Ball State to attend the FIRST Annual Conference Session of the brand new Indiana Conference of the United Methodist Church. I am VERY excited . . .

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