The Walls Are Dissolving

By Bill Mowry July 9, 2020

The Grey Hound bus was packed with rowdy high school students. My senior class was going to Washington D.C. Our rural school was off to the big city. I dozed through most of the first day’s sight-seeing. That night, we hung out at the motel, watched tv, and played pranks on the girls. Hey, we were seniors away from home. When we woke the next morning, the world had changed. Martin Luther King had been assassinated the day before, April 4, 1968. We woke up…

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Unsticking the Stuck

By Bill Mowry June 19, 2020

I’m a collector of vinyl records. I gave up buying CDs several years ago. There’s a fullness of sound on vinyl that is not replicated on a CD. This quality of sound, though, has some draw backs. My stereo system picks up all the dust and scratches that accumulates on vinyl records. Sometimes the scratch is so deep the needle gets stuck and the same sound or note is played over and over again. What an annoyance! Words can be like stuck records. Some words…

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By Bill Mowry May 27, 2020

“Stomp!” read a neighbors’ chalk drawing. Nate is an art teacher at a local high school. He drew a replica of the corona virus on the street and invited people walking by to “stomp!” on the virus. So I did! And it felt good. I know that stomping on a chalk drawing is not going to stop the pandemic. This fun act takes off some of the edge of being “self-isolated.” Nearly three months in the same house is pretty confining. Stomping on the virus…

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It’s Time To Ask Some Questions

By Bill Mowry May 14, 2020

It’s time to ask some questions. Not everyone is comfortable with asking questions or answering questions. Look at how politicians and teachers squirm when asked a question they’re unprepared to answer. Question asking is important. The dilemma is which questions should we ask. Two questions are in people’s minds today. First the big one: “Why is God allowing this pandemic?” The second is more practical: “When will it be safe to start up schools or go to a restaurant?” The latter question is for politicians…

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Climate Change Is More Than a Temperature Fluctuation

By Bill Mowry April 30, 2020

Has my title caught your attention? You’re probably asking, “Why are you talking about climate change, Bill?” I know it’s a debatable topic, but, no matter the position we take, imperceptible changes are happening on our planet. Here’s one small example. My wife Peggy is a certified Master Gardener. At a recent workshop she learned how Ohio’s hardiness growing zones are subtly changing. Plants and trees once native to our area may soon struggle because of changing climate conditions. The silent, unseen, and slow impact…

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Living in an Odd Mash-Up

By Bill Mowry April 22, 2020

Life today is an odd mash-up of a pandemic, the resurrection, and ordinary time. Our emotions ping-pong back and forth from social media and the news channels to an empty tomb and a risen Lord. What a bizarre moment in history. I find myself strangely removed from the COVID-19 headlines. The numbers of people infected and the tally of deaths seem distant from my personal experience. I don’t want to be cold-hearted but statistics don’t always grab my emotions. Then Tom’s email arrived. My friend…

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The Black Swan Has Landed and We Call It COVID-19

By Bill Mowry April 16, 2020

What’s the book I’m reaching for in this pandemic? This isn’t a trick question. It should be the Bible. But . . . there’s another book I’ve found to be relevant. It’s The Black Swan by Nassim Nicholas Taleb. How can a book about swans help us shelter in place? For hundreds of years, we assumed that all swans were white. No one thought that a black swan could exist. Then black swans were discovered in Australia. Our knowledge of the swam family was up-ended…

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Therapy for the Sheltered-in-Place

By Bill Mowry April 8, 2020

I feel like I need some soul-therapy as I shelter-in-place. It’s been over three weeks since I’ve been in a store or a restaurant. It’s been over three weeks since I talked with a non-family member closer than six feet away. It’s been four weeks since I’ve been in a Lowe’s or Home Depot (maybe the hardest separation!). On top of that, I’m bombarded by life-threatening statistics and images through the media. Peggy and I are grateful for God’s protection and provision but sometimes our…

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A Place for Small And Local

By Bill Mowry March 5, 2020

The older I get the smaller I think. I’m not sure if this is because of my declining energy level or whether there’s some maturity taking place. I’m learning to appreciate thinking small and local rather than big and wide. This is a change for me since I’ve always been kind of a “vision guy.” Sometimes I wonder if I shouldn’t be like Caleb, the Old Testament leader who said “I am this day eighty-five years old. I am still as strong today as I…

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Why I Don’t Like Organic Ministry

By Bill Mowry March 5, 2020

(but I practice organic ministry) I must be honest. I was bored by the roundtable discussion on disciplemaking… until Jeff spoke. “I should be more intentional about disciplemaking” he said, “but I tend to wing it. I guess I’m more organic in my approach.” Carol immediately jumped in on Jeff’s comment: “I invite friends from the neighborhood over to fold laundry and talk about Jesus and the Bible. This is how I disciple others. It’s pretty organic.” I liked the discussion on flexibility and friendship…

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