Quick Review of Alan Jacob’s How to Think

When I saw a link a few weeks ago to an article by Austin Kleon regarding this book and having both “like hearted” and “like minded people” in your life, I had to get the book and read it.

What a great book on good thinking it turned out to be.

Jacobs makes a solid case about good thinking which challenges our comfortable and deeply held assumptions.

I am going to read this book a second time!


Note: I chose to read this book and got it through an Inter-Library Loan and offer this short review.


It was a busy May…

Some of you might have wondered what happened to me after the AtoZ Challenge, that filled this blog with nearly a post day during the month of April! Well the following photograph will tell part of the story of my absence here and on your blogs there…


For one, my oldest son graduated from his university on the third Saturday in May after spending his final semester in Los Angeles honing his film making skills. He graduated with a degree in Film Production and Film Studies. He was honored academically for his work as well as personally with the student body honoring him as the best senior male student.


My mom also celebrated her 94th birthday and a trip to my home state of Ohio resulted in her friends at her former church honoring her with a party.


So the month of May was very busy but I am back to posting regularly here and was just reminded on Saturday by the great folks here at WordPress that it is my 10th anniversary here! I am grateful for the excellent service and platform provided by WordPress.


Have a great week!

On the Page Again…back to reading and reviewing

Well, I am back after a five-month hiatus from reading and reviewing books. I did not completely stop reading books but I will be posting my first review since January later this week!


So, on the book table and kindle (it has been nearly two years since I wrote a post with that line in it!) are the following





Jim Turner’s Disconnected Man, via the Amazon Vine program about men, who maybe productive and responsible men, but are disconnected in many ways from their wives, family, and people in general.









Then, on the kindle, via NetGalley, is Grant Corriveau’s Uplift: A Pilot’s Journey. This was a wonderful book written by a veteran Canadian airline pilot. Full review later this week.


Good to be back!

Hymns of The Faith, Abide with Me, AtoZChallenge

Good Monday Morning! Well, there are no hymns with the letters X and Z in theme as far I as I could find (or not find) and so I am using them in the same way as the “Free Space” in the middle of one’s BINGO card for a hymn that the congregation I serve began singing a bit more in the past year and for my concluding post in this 2018.

Abide with me: fast falls the eventide;
the darkness deepens; Lord, with me abide.
When other helpers fail and comforts flee,
Help of the helpless, O abide with me

Written by Scottish Anglican Curate (or Assistant Pastor in American terminology) Henry Francis Lyte. According to Darrell St. Romain

There is some controversy to the exact dating of the text to “Abide with Me.” An article in the Spectator, Oct. 3, 1925, says that Lyte composed the hymn in 1820 while visiting a dying friend.

However, in 1847, Lyte wrote a letter to his daughter Julia, where he referred to the hymn as “my latest effusion.” There is no clear evidence on when he actually wrote the hymn. According to Raymond Glover, editor to The Companion to Hymnal 1982, Lyte probably wrote the hymn in 1820, and recalled the hymn during the illness that led to his death in 1847.

I listened to many covers of this wonderful hymn, including a powerful and emotional one by UK actress and singer Lizzie Jones, whose husband, an English Rugby player who died after falling ill at an rugby match earlier that season. But I have selected this one by the Exeter University Singers that was broadcast on the BBC’s The One Show about the song’s origins.

Thank you for reading and liking many of my posts in this 2018 series and I plan to read several posts by fellow bloggers this next week!


Hymns of the Faith, Yield Not to Temptation, AtoZChallenge

As this year’s AtoZChallenge concludes and we come to Y for today, the hymn for today is a simple and profound song

Yield not to temptation,
For yielding is sin;
Each vict’ry will help you,
Some other to win;
Fight valiantly onward,
Evil passions subdue;
Look ever to Jesus,
He will carry you through.

Ask the Savior to help you,
Comfort, strengthen and keep you;
He is willing to aid you,
He will carry you through.

Written by New York native Horatio Richmond Palmer in 1868 while, according to a direct quote of Palmer on the website, pulled from a book by Ira Sankey:

I was at work on the dry sub­ject of ‘The­o­ry,’ when the com­plete idea flashed up­on me, and I laid aside the the­o­ret­ic­al work and hur­ried­ly penned both words and mu­sic as fast as I could write them. I su­bmit­ted them to the cri­ti­cism of a friend af­ter­ward, and some chang­es were made in the third stan­za, but the first two are ex­act­ly as they came to me—I am rev­er­ent­ly thank­ful it has been a pow­er for good.

Here is a simple and beautiful cover of this hymn from a Nazarene church in India.

Hymns of Faith, What A Friend We Have in Jesus, AtoZChallenge #atozchallenge

As with many hymns, especially written in the 19th and 20th century, this selection for my Hymns of the Faith, AtoZchallenge was written to address personal circumstances with the hope that a person’s faith in God would be strengthened. It was, as were several that I have already written about, written as a poem.

What a friend we have in Jesus,
all our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry
everything to God in prayer!
O what peace we often forfeit,
O what needless pain we bear,
all because we do not carry
everything to God in prayer!

Written Joseph Medlicott Scriven, What a Friend We Have in Jesus,  was written as a poem of comfort to his mother, “to comfort her in a time of special [s]orrow, not intending any one else should see it.”

Set to the tune of CONVERSE by Charles Converse, it has been a hymn of comfort to and for many over the years.

Here is a great rendition of this hymn done by the congregation at the Royal Oak, Michigan Salvation Army Corps complete with a brass band accompaniment!

Hymns of the Faith: Victory In Jesus, AtoZChallenge

I heard an old, old story,
How a Savior came from glory,
How He gave His life on Calvary
To save a wretch like me;
I heard about His groaning,
Of His precious blood’s atoning,
Then I repented of my sins
And won the victory.

Another childhood, and teenage, I must admit, favorite is my selection for this installment of Hymns of the Faith as part of this year’s AtoZChallenge.

Victory in Jesus was written by Missouri native Eugene Monroe Bartlett (E M Bartlett) in 1939 after he had a stroke. (He passed away in 1941). According to hymnary.org Bartlett was trained as a music teacher and was a leader in developing Southern gospel music.”

Now that know this background, I think this song has greater meaning to me because I now see it as a statement of faith in Christ even in the aftermath of a serious medical condition!

Enjoy this congregational rendition of this hymn from the Temple Baptist Church in Powell, Tennessee