Lincoln’s Pockets

By |2019-08-12T17:12:31-04:00August 15th, 2019|

The night US president Abraham Lincoln was shot at Ford’s Theater in 1865, his pockets contained the following: two spectacles, a lens polisher, a pocketknife, a watch fob, a handkerchief, a leather wallet containing a five-dollar Confederate bill, and eight newspaper clippings, including several that praised him and his policies...

The Power of Encouragement

By |2019-08-07T13:41:15-04:00August 10th, 2019|

When he was a young boy, Benjamin West attempted to draw a picture of his sister, but he succeeded only in making a mess. His mother saw his creation, kissed him on the head, and remarked, “Why, it’s Sally!” He would later say that it was that kiss that made him an artist—and the great American painter he would become. Encouragement is a powerful thing!

The Best Strategy for Life

By |2019-04-29T13:57:33-04:00May 9th, 2019|

As we watched my daughter’s basketball game from the bleachers, I heard the coach utter a single word to the girls on the court: “Doubles.” Immediately, their defensive strategy shifted from one-on-one to two of their players teaming against their tallest ball-holding opponent. They were successful in thwarting her efforts to shoot and score, eventually taking the ball down the court to their own basket...

A Hand Up

By |2018-11-26T14:09:56-04:00December 5th, 2018|

My children have enjoyed the thrill of a backyard ice-skating rink during our cold Idaho winters. When they were young, learning to skate was challenging: persuading them to deliberately set foot on the hard, icy surface proved difficult because they knew the pain of falling. Each time their feet slid out from under them, my husband or I would reach out to pull them again to their feet, setting them upright and steadying their frames...

Bound to Encourage

By |2018-11-05T16:27:38-04:00November 14th, 2018|

The Steven Thompson Memorial Centipede is a cross-country meet unlike any other. Each seven-member team runs as a unit, holding a rope for the first two miles of a three-mile course. At the two-mile mark, the team drops the rope and finishes the race individually. Each person’s time is, therefore, a combination of the pace the team kept and his or her own speed...

The Blessing of Encouragers

By |2018-09-17T12:11:43-04:00September 22nd, 2018|

The 2010 movie The King’s Speech tells the story of England’s King George VI, who unexpectedly became monarch when his brother abandoned the throne. With the country on the brink of World War II, government officials wanted a well-spoken leader because of the increasingly influential role of radio. King George VI, however, struggled with a stuttering problem...

To My Dear Friend

By |2018-07-18T12:58:49-04:00August 3rd, 2018|

What the apostle John did for his friend Gaius in the first century is a dying art in the twenty-first century. John wrote him a letter. One writer for the New York Times, Catherine Field, said, “Letter-writing is among our most ancient of arts. Think of letters and the mind falls on Paul of Tarsus,” for example. And we can add the apostle John...

Whispering Words

By |2018-03-15T16:25:25-04:00March 17th, 2018|

The young man fidgeted as he sat down for his flight. His eyes darted back and forth to the aircraft windows. Then he closed his eyes and breathed deeply, trying to calm himself—but it didn’t work. As the plane took off, he slowly rocked back and forth. An older woman across the aisle from him put her hand on his arm and gently engaged him in conversation to divert his attention from his stress...