Tag: Texas

  • Chasing the Panther and Finding One’s Self: A Review of The Which Way Tree

    Chasing the Panther and Finding One’s Self: A Review of The Which Way Tree

    You might say that Elizabeth Crook has written a classic boy’s adventure.  The Which Way Tree is narrated by 17-year-old Benjamin Shreve, who tells the tale of an epic panther hunt in Civil War-era Texas.  There are renegade soldiers, larger-than-life characters, chases through the Hill Country and a magnificent, terrifying beast. But this is also […]

  • The UMC & The Which Way Tree

    The UMC & The Which Way Tree

    Preacher Dob, the Mexican horse thief, and two young teens were at a standstill.  They had lost the trail of the panther they were hunting, the one who had killed the girl’s mother and on whom she had sworn vengeance.  Zechariah, their panther dog, had gotten the worse of an encounter with a skunk, and […]

  • 6 Steps to a Growing Church. Yes, Even Here! – Part 2

    6 Steps to a Growing Church. Yes, Even Here! – Part 2

    In Part One of Ben Rigsby’s post on reviving a church in a small town he talked about life-changing worship and reaching new people.  In this post he discusses 4 more steps to growing a rural church… It takes critical mass to launch a church, it takes the same to revive This is a tough […]

  • 6 Steps to a Growing Church. Yes, Even Here!: Guest Blogger Ben Rigsby

    6 Steps to a Growing Church. Yes, Even Here!: Guest Blogger Ben Rigsby

    Anybody who’s spent more than a minute with me since last summer has heard me yammer on about the people l met in Archer City, Texas on my leave. One of those folks is the dynamic pastor of First UMC, the Rev. Ben RIgsby.  You don’t often find church planters on the rural frontier but […]

  • Waltzing (and Futzing) Across Texas: A review of Texas Blood

    Waltzing (and Futzing) Across Texas: A review of Texas Blood

    If you pick up this book you won’t know where you’re headed.  Texas, sure.  After all the title of Roger D. Hodge’s book is Texas Blood: Seven Generations Among the Outlaws, Ranchers, Indians, Missionaries, Soldiers, and Smugglers of the Borderlands.  And there are maps in the first chapter that will whet your appetite for West […]

  • Sunset in Archer County – A Poem

    Sunset in Archer County – A Poem

    If coyotes howl at sunset why do we sit in silence? Staring at our screens or dumbfounded by our electrified darlings we let the miracle pass unnoticed day after night after day. That a nuclear furnace on which all life depends some millions of miles beyond us is passing once more out of sight plunging […]

  • God, love, God, love: The Winn Collier Interview Concludes (3 of 3)

    God, love, God, love: The Winn Collier Interview Concludes (3 of 3)

    In previous segments of this interview with Winn Collier we talked small towns, small churches, and his use of letters to tell the story of Granby Presbyterian Church, the fictional congregation at the heart of Collier’s new book.  Love Big. Be Well.:Letters to a Small-Town Church is a big-hearted, hopeful book that celebrates what Christian […]

  • How to Make Your Church Inefficient: The Winn Collier interview continues (2 of 3)

    How to Make Your Church Inefficient: The Winn Collier interview continues (2 of 3)

    In the first part of my interview with Winn Collier, pastor of All Souls Charlottesville and author of Love Big. Be Well.: Letters to a Small-Town Church, we talked about his decision to set his novel in a small town.  We also talked about the use of letters as a way to tell the story […]

  • Heartlands Best Reads of 2017: #7 All the Pretty Horses

    Heartlands Best Reads of 2017: #7 All the Pretty Horses

    I’m sure Cormac McCarthy has been dying to see if this accolade would come his way.  His 1992 novel, All the Pretty Horses, is now 25 years old, but I just got around to it this year.  Something about spending a month in West Texas made it seem like an appropriate companion. And it was.  McCarthy […]

  • Coming Off Leave(s)

    Coming Off Leave(s)

    Leaves don’t so much change color in the fall as they become what they’ve always been.  The chlorophyll that gives all deciduous trees their summer uniform of green begins to break down in the cooling days of autumn.  The carotenoids in the leaves remain, lending trees their brilliant yellows and oranges.  Those colors have always […]