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About David H. Roper

David H. Roper was a pastor for more than 30 years and now directs Idaho Mountain Ministries, a retreat dedicated to the encouragement of pastoral couples. He enjoys fishing, hiking, and being stream-side with his wife, Carolyn. His favourite fictional character is Reepicheep, the tough little mouse that is the soul of courage in C. S. Lewis' Chronicles of Narnia. His favourite biblical character is Caleb—that rugged old saint who never retired, but who "died climbing." Find books by David Roper

Playing with Joy

By |2019-06-20T12:08:17-04:00June 24th, 2019|

One of our sons, Brian, is a high school basketball coach. One year, as his team was dribbling its way through the Washington State Basketball Tournament, well-meaning folks around town asked, “Are you going to win it all this year?” Both players and coaches felt the pressure, so Brian adopted a motto: “Play with joy!” I thought of the apostle Paul’s last words to the elders of Ephesus: “That I may finish my race with joy” (Acts 20:24 NKJV)...

Come and Get It!

By |2019-04-29T13:06:11-04:00May 6th, 2019|

I peeked over the grape-stake fence that encloses our backyard. There I saw folks running, jogging, walking, and shuffling around the track that surrounds the park behind our home. I used to do that when I was stronger, I thought. And a wave of dissatisfaction washed over me. Later, while reading the Scriptures, I came across Isaiah 55:1, “Come, all you who are thirsty,” and I realized again that dissatisfaction (thirst) is the rule, not the exception in this life...

Not Like Yesterday

By |2019-04-18T15:44:31-04:00April 25th, 2019|

When our grandson Jay was a child his parents gave him a new T-shirt for his birthday. He put it on right away and proudly wore it all day. When he appeared the next morning in the shirt, his dad asked him, “Jay, does that shirt make you happy?” “Not as much as yesterday,” Jay replied. That’s the problem with material acquisition: Even the good things of life can’t give us the deep, lasting happiness we so strongly desire. Though we may have many possessions, we may still be unhappy...

Fluff and Other Stuff

By |2019-03-18T12:19:10-04:00March 26th, 2019|

Winnie the Pooh famously said, “If the person you are talking to doesn’t appear to be listening, be patient. It may simply be that he has a small piece of fluff in his ear.” I’ve learned over the years that Winnie might be on to something. When someone won’t listen to you even though following your counsel would be to their advantage, it may be that their reticence is nothing more than a small piece of fluff in their ear...

The Great Awakening

By |2018-12-14T15:23:34-04:00December 18th, 2018|

I have a treasured memory of gatherings with family friends when our boys were small. The adults would talk into the night; our children, weary with play would curl up on a couch or chair and fall asleep. When it was time to leave, I would gather our boys into my arms, carry them to the car, lay them in the back seat, and take them home. When we arrived, I would pick them up again, tuck them into their beds, kiss them goodnight, and turn out the light. In the morning they would awaken—at home.

Putting Up Hay

By |2018-11-23T14:11:30-04:00November 27th, 2018|

When I was in college, I worked a summer on a ranch in Colorado. One evening, tired and hungry after a long day of mowing hay, I drove the tractor into the yard. Acting like the hot shot I thought I was, I cranked the steering wheel hard left, stamped on the left brake, and spun the tractor around. The sickle was down and swept the legs out from under a 500-gallon gasoline tank standing nearby...

Fathers and Sons

By |2018-11-05T16:01:33-04:00November 8th, 2018|

My father was a good father, and, in most respects, I was a dutiful son. But I allowed my father to starve for the one thing I could have given him: myself. He was a quiet man; I was equally silent. We often worked for hours side-by-side with scarcely a word passing between us. He never asked; I never told him my deepest desires and dreams, my hopes and fears...

Better Than Ever

By |2018-10-04T16:52:21-04:00October 5th, 2018|

The story is told of a group of salmon fishermen who gathered in a Scottish inn after a long day of fishing. As one was describing a catch to his friends, his arm swept across the table and knocked a glass against the wall, shattering it and leaving a stain on the white plaster surface. The man apologized to the innkeeper and offered to pay for the damage, but there was nothing he could do; the wall was ruined...