It’s Not a Cop Out to Trust

So much of my anxiety comes from an overwhelming sense of helplessness. I worry out scenarios before they take place, and my anxious thoughts accomplish nothing. I have a control issue. I like to have everything clearly defined so that I can do the right thing (according to my personal version of “right”). I have…

He Couldn’t Do That?

Do you believe that God parted the Red Sea for his people to cross on dry land? “Certainly.” Do you believe that God saved Noah’s family from a deluge of water that covered the earth? “I do.” Do you believe that God restored DNA in Lazarus to bring him back to life? “Of course.” Do…

Graybeards’ Charge

Have you ever considered how blessed you are, if the graybeards in your family are/were God-fearing, gentle souls? I look at my own family and feel cheated that my grandfathers hoarded their wisdom and experience during their golden years. I never met Grandpa Smith. He commercial fished in the Gulf of Mexico. He was a…

Journal of Peace

Lately, a trip to the ER reminded me how quickly my life can be upended. I weathered the overnight ordeal, but came home as weak as a kitten. Then, not 5 minutes ago, as I sat at my computer writing this, a 5.9-point (on the Richter scale) earthquake hit the Anchorage area. Every nerve in…

When Time Flips the Vinyl

Mrs. Clancy’s husband died in his leather recliner — an island surrounded by half-empty pill bottles, moldy food on plastic plates, man-sized diapers, and Car and Driver magazines. Mr. Clancy, in his prime, had owned a car dealership. He bequeathed his unhappy wife substantial funds from an insurance policy which she spent liberally to satisfy bizarre hoarding…

Did You Miss It Too?

Jesus tells the story (parable) about three managers who were given wealth to invest for their employer. Two wise managers increased their patron’s funds by 100 percent. (Matthew 25:14-25) But one of the three managers believed that their patron was prone to exploitation ——– ·       To protect himself, the fearful manager buried the patron’s funds.…

Fingerprints On the Heart

Carol and I offer this glimpse into our 48-years of marriage to remind you that Jesus heals all wounds. Don’t give up! ———– SHE SAID: Love isn’t always normal. You romanced me with nothing. You drove an old pickup. You lived in a studio apartment. But I said “I do” to a boy with a…

Keep Going

“All my life I was taught how to die as a Christian… but no one ever taught me how I ought to live in the years before I die.” – The late Billy Graham in his book Nearing Home. >>>>>>>>>>> I know what he meant. My grandparents failed to warn me about what I’d face……

Counsel in the Clearing

            It might be the right season. It might be the right reason. But it may be the wrong place… Late one night, a neighbor in Kodiak, Alaska, noticed two bow hunters driving along the street “stalking” a bear that had been busy foraging in trash cans. The street was clearly within city limits, and…

“Crossing the Line” –

– It’s Not Always a Bad Thing… Every Christ follower will cross the line into the “zone of uncertainty.” The zone of uncertainty is territory where we acknowledge and trust God’s wisdom and motives in the face of nagging doubts. Crossing the line into uncertainty feels intimidating — but when we cross, our commitment to…

Beyond Effort

Isa. 64:4 “Since ancient times no one has heard, no ear has perceived, no eye has seen any God besides you, who acts on behalf of those who wait for him.” —– In other words, God’s way of deliverance will shock you. You will find no logic in it. Acting on your behalf has its…

Crash Site

A C-124 Globemaster, one of the Air Force’s largest heavy transport planes in 1952, hit a cliff on Alaska’s Mount Gannett, killing 41 passengers and 11 crewmen. Due to severe weather, the military gave up trying to reach the crash site. Layers of snow and ice entombed the shredded plane, as well as the remains…

What God Sees

What God sees when he sees me: My future:God sees all of my next thoughts, next mistakes, next hopes, next decisions, next relationships, next commitments, next desires—and my final breath. At this moment, God sees me living with him in his spiritual realm forever. My present:He sees all my immediate thoughts and why I am…

Miracle Encounters

Shadows of spawning salmon fascinate my dog, Ruby. Salmon live at sea for years before traveling up Alaska rivers and streams to spawn in brooks or lakes. In these water courses, male salmon fertilize the eggs that females lay. The eggs hatch into alevin (hatchlings) then grow into fry. From fry they grow into smolt…

Leap Too Far

With sticky watermelon slices in our fingers, my sons and I hiked toward the sound of a frothy roar. The boys trotted ahead and found a flume spewing water through a natural canal. My eight-year-old gauged a leap to the opposite side of a concrete structure and bounded like a whippet. He waved his melon…

Belle’s Baskets

            When Belle was a girl, she listened to Deg Hit’an legends told by her elders in kashims (community houses). She never imagined that someday she would be honored as an Alaskan Native artisan in Washington D.C.               Belle lived around Grayling and Anvik, Alaska, where Deg Hit’an men sawed trees to power the steamships…

Model Mice

A family can learn a lot from Alaska’s singing voles. This rodent constructs a labyrinth of chambers about seven inches below ground. The singing vole prefers raising a family just a little above the tree line, in the “moderate” climes of northern and southern Alaska.             Our vole vocalist is also called the hay mouse,…

Eternal Tongue

“How would you feel if your baby died?” Chief Marie, the last Indian fluent in the Eyak tongue, explained how she would have felt if she had allowed her ancestral language to become extinct. According to linguists, 19 of the 20 indigenous languages in Alaska may die out as English replaces everyday Native words. Linguists…

Facing Change

            A few of us are blessed with a primeval sense of abandon. We live for the satisfying shudder, bungee jumping from a rock face, or standing pat in the face of a grizzly’s false charge. Far more of us are contented to partake of the perils on the Last Frontier at the safe end…

What Do You Expect?

Soldiers in Afghanistan have reported a sense of desperation at times, when IEDs (improvised explosive devices) surround their positions. They say that it’s smarter to risk a sniper’s bullet than to “guess” their way across a zone not officially cleared of landmines. In my frantic everyday life, I, too, can feel hemmed in — by…