All Heart, No Halo

Peter was a brawny, self-employed seaman who spoke his mind too often. Working with his family under the oppressive Roman government had shaped his attitude toward authority. Nothing in Simon Peter’s rough-cut demeanor would have inspired a refined, educated Jew or Roman. None of Peter’s friends imagined that Peter could spearhead a world-shaking movement—yet, God…

Bird Brain

Like a frantic typist, a woodpecker can hammer a tree trunk up to 100 times per minute–and nothing in his appearance reveals what gives him that ability. The woodpecker’s skull is padded with an inner “football helmet” made of cartilage that prevents multiple concussions. After drilling a hole in a tree trunk, his retractable tongue—twice…

Outlaws for a Season

In 1964, Martin Luther King Jr. said, “Nonviolence is a powerful and just weapon. Indeed, it is a weapon unique in history, which cuts without wounding and ennobles the man who wields it.” (Nobel Prize acceptance speech, Stockholm, Sweden) King was echoing another reformer’s convictions—whose name was Martin Luther. Like King, Martin Luther ignited powerful…

Breaking Bad — Luck

When I was a younger man, I worked in the construction trades, and our foreman, Smothers, almost daily, quoted a proverb that he lived by: “Anything that can go wrong—will…” Smothers growled his aphorism while we hammered ribs to a house’s frame. He said it tongue in cheek—but his attitude bled into every stud and…

McMuffin on the Rocks

No bears on the trail today… Of necessity, I had set out to pick up groceries that I ordered at Fred Meyer days ago—but on this trip, I got distracted by ALASKA… In 30 years of Great Land living, I couldn’t have conceived a more nightmarish reality, where authorities order families to practice social distancing…

Shunning the Handshake

In the church foyer, the man pumped my arm like a jack handle. “Good grip, young man.” As a teenager, I evaluated masculinity by clasping a respected man’s right hand. I felt his knobby fingers and callouses. I observed Sunday morning shoe polish on his knuckle. A handshake verified friendship. A shake lasted for mere…

Beneath the Mist

Sennacherib threatened the Jewish people with slavery and slaughter. [II Kings 18-19] From a Jerusalem rampart, King Hezekiah studied thousands of Assyrian campfires lighting the horizon. The Assyrians had conquered the Northern Kingdom of Israel, and soon they would position siege towers against the walls of Jerusalem. When Sennacherib conquered a fortified city, his soldiers…

Church on the Wall

Written by Richard Drebert ©Good Catch Publishing Mum loved to watch the flutists piping “Blood and Thunder” at the festival commemorating the Londonderry siege of 1688. She cheered the Lambeg drummers in the Apprentice Boys Parade honoring 13 Protestant youths who bolted shut the gates of Derry (Londonderry) against a Catholic king and his army.…

The Way Home

At 17 and 18, Carol and I couldn’t have guessed that, someday, we would be mushing dog teams in Alaska. We’re coming up on 47 years as married partners, and 32 of those years have been spent in the Great Land. Last week, we watched 58 mushers launch off the starting line in Anchorage to…

Believers! Believe the GREAT I AM

I am a sinner — God says I am a saint. He has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time… [II Tim. 1:9] I am emotionally…

Rangers in the Gap

A few years ago I wrote the book: “Rangers in the Gap” about Dave and Karen Eubank and the Free Burma Rangers. Their movie depicts the impact of their “boots-on-the-ground ” ministry, and opened in theaters around the nation.

Power on Display

For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities–his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.  [Romans 1:20]

Hush Up

When we keep quiet rather than yield to impulse; when we resist our right to express outrage; when we stanch our urge to correct someone; when we deny our craving to be understood; when we zip our lips, though we stand on the moral high ground; when we leave vindication to God… Our act of…

His Pic

We have no ability to “google” zoom in or zoom out as God can. We can be content that Jesus knows the landscape better than us. His choices are viewed from every possible angle. And thankfully, our mistakes are calculated into his choices, too. God owns the canvas of our lives. He determines where to…

Able

My prayer verse today: Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen. [Ephesians 3:20, 21 KJV] God is able: I depend upon God…

The Broken Road: Addiction and Redemption

The Story of Chaplain Mike Ensch, Former Administrator of Chaplaincy Services for the Alaska Department of Corrections. Written by Richard Drebert (c) Good Catch Publishng Please note: I interviewed Chaplain Ensch in 2011 for a book written by several authors for Alaska Correctional Ministries called Warriors of Transformation. Mike passed away Monday, 11/11/19 and his…

The Promise

An Alaskan storm roared outside his cabin as Grandpa tucked his granddaughter into bed one evening. Thunder crashed and the child snuggled deeper beneath the covers. “Can you leave the light on, Grandpa?” she asked.           “Sure.”           “…and not turn it off ALL night?”           “Of course, sweetheart.”           Granddaughter looked thoughtful, listening to…