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About Forgetting

SShepherdCalls_WPhe arrived late for church. She is never late. A neat, wispy lady – her red eyes told me she’d been crying. “Are you okay?” I asked, knowing full well she wasn’t.

“This Alzheimer’s business is awful,” she said staring at me. There was resigned panic in her voice. Not long ago, she was diagnosed with the disease. She still babysits her grandchildren, and she awoke in the night

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Less is More

ShepherdCalls_WPThe television program was about a hoarder. The lady had so much stuff her house could no longer contain it. She kept everything — even empty tissue rolls and plastic bread wrappers. She had grown up with very little; and in adulthood, she determined to keep everything she could get her hands on. When her living conditions became dangerous, her children had her declared incompetent, sent her to a nursing

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Be Fruitful

ShepherdCalls_WPSeveral days ago, the Kansas City Star ran a front-page story about carrier pigeons, aka passenger pigeons. The article seemed so unbelievable, I checked it out in several other sources. It seems this bird was once the most prolific bird in America and perhaps in the world. Historical documents of our earliest settlers tell of flocks so large they darkened the sky and took hours to pass over. A Virginia

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The Art of Following

ShepherdCalls_WPAfter church, some friends and I were going to lunch. Since I was in their city, I asked them to select a restaurant. They told me the name of the restaurant and said, “Follow me.” Somewhere, in the brief one-mile journey to a nice sit-down eatery, another auto got between us. When I followed that car into a drive-in restaurant, I realized I was following the wrong vehicle. Fortunately, my

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She’s My Sister

ShepherdCalls_WPShe’s less than three months old. She had major open heart surgery when she was only a few days old. We had many fearful moments. Today, she still must be fed through a feeding tube; and while she is not growing as fast as hoped, she is growing. My wife was holding her, as you might imagine, very closely. I looked over and said, “Do you want to take her

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Work… It’s Good for You

ShepherdCalls_WPThe year was 1952. I was a sophomore in high school in Meridian, Mississippi. Though I weighed just slightly more than 100 pounds, I joined the football team. Practice began several weeks prior to the beginning of school. I realized I was a bit small and knew very little about the game, but I wanted to play and participated in practice. As school began, I swelled with pride when friends

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It’s a Paradox

ShepherdCalls_WPTim Kreider, a cartoonist and author, insists that idleness is not all bad. He says it provides the space and quiet necessary to stand back and see all the issues — the big picture. It is “paradoxically necessary to getting work done.”

Those words caught my attention for two reasons: First, because I have been sitting here idle for some time trying to determine what to write about; and second,

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The Glory of the Lord

ShepherdCalls_WPI was on my knees, but I was not there to pray. I was on my knees in the garden transplanting vines I hope will eventually cover ugly places in the lawn. The joy of the moment brought to mind the scripture that says, “And the glory of the Lord shone round about them.” (Luke 2:9) Those words were spoken of the shepherds when the angels announced Jesus’ birth to

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Life Stacks Up

ShepherdCalls_WPOn a shelf beside my desk, I have a “stack of stuff.” Mail, magazines, and other “stuff” arrives more rapidly than I can process it. Each day I search through the new arrivals. Much of it I can throw away quickly. Some demands immediate attention — bills and personal correspondence; but then there are the “I don’t know what to do with this” items. Often I put those in my

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