“Harold” is one of the most popular stories in Shane L. Bishop’s book called “Exactly as I Remember it.” Here is the story being told at the 2007 Metro-East Unity Service held at St. Matthew United Methodist Church in Belleville, Illinois.

They say Carnival makes Mardi Gras look like a fifth grade dance

Christ Our Redeemer I just returned from my 20th (give or take) No Greater Love Ministries Outreach to the New Orleans Mardi Gras.  To say it gets a bit crazy on the streets would be an understatement.  Each year in Rio DeJinero there is a similar festival called Carnival.  It also occurs just before Lent. Continue reading “They say Carnival makes Mardi Gras look like a fifth grade dance”

I Punched The devil In The Face … by Lydia Blaha

For the person out there today who feels like they just can’t do it anymore–For the person who is under so much pressure and stress, they feel like every second, another part of them is crumbling– For the person who is tired, weak, and sees no light at the end of the tunnel, read on…Continue reading “I Punched The devil In The Face … by Lydia Blaha”

Simmering the Stress (of church leadership)

Simmering the Stress (of church leadership) Some years ago (when I was still “young-ish”) my health was in a rapidly declining state.  Christ Church was moving from 400 in worship each weekend toward 750 and it was literally killing me.  Our staff was a mess, the congregation was in flux and I was doing theContinue reading “Simmering the Stress (of church leadership)”

One Pastor’s Thoughts on Clergy Attire (Don’t Wear Cargo Shorts)

Some years ago (before dressing down was the norm) I spoke at a hip, new church plant. They had a clearly defined church culture (before I knew what church culture was) and were thriving. Upon arrival I was greeted by a person assigned to me for the morning. He was dressed in some Dockers andContinue reading “One Pastor’s Thoughts on Clergy Attire (Don’t Wear Cargo Shorts)”

I Love You Enough for Both of Us

  Experpt from “Exactly as I Remember It” Maddox (Fairview Heights, Illinois, circa 2011) One Sunday evening after I wrapped up 6:00 church, I was headed to the car to scare up a late supper.  Melissa was already waiting on me, but I noticed that my daughter Lydia and her family were still in theContinue reading “I Love You Enough for Both of Us”

“Don’t Talk to Me Until You Brush Out Your Coffee Breath” (By Lydia)

I only write well when I’m uninspired- that’s what inspires me. It’s the pure feeling of crap that usually gets me writing so here we go. Not like anyone cares but here’s what has me writing this week (don’t worry- to all my readers that think I’m somewhere between brilliant and obnoxious, this is notContinue reading ““Don’t Talk to Me Until You Brush Out Your Coffee Breath” (By Lydia)”

Reflections at Fifty One…

“I am fifty-one.  I am no longer middle aged.  I can think of no one in my family who has lived to 102.  I am somewhere in the third quarter… (I hope).” Almost every morning I walk at least one mile.  It is sometimes two miles but most often somewhere in between.  I walk inContinue reading “Reflections at Fifty One…”