Tossing the Past

By Joe Rector I figure many folks are like me; they’ve made it through the first week of “social distancing” and stayed at home. It feels much like those times when snow dumped several inches on us in East Tennessee except the roads are clear and there’s no sledding or snowman building. Some people have […]

Difficult Times

By Joe Rector The plain truth is that we are in the midst of a worldwide crisis. This coronavirus is sweeping the planet with illness for which we have no answers as of yet. The U.S. failed to react quickly enough and is now playing catch up. It appears that each day’s news shows an […]

Old white men

By Joe Rector As of a few days ago, Elizabeth Warren ended her bid to become the Democratic nominee for president. Except for Tulsi Gabbard, who hangs on with a whopping 1 delegate won from the primary in America Samoa, the surviving candidates are two old white men, one 77 and the other 78. The […]

A Bad Phone Call

By Joe Rector Amy and I recently attended the funeral of a long-time church friend. Herb Allender was a 98-year-old World War II fighter pilot. He’d served his family, community, and God well for all those years. A standing-room only crowd arrived to honor Herb and to support his children and wife, Mary Beth, to […]

Pay the piper

  By Joe Rector By now, millions of Americans have filed their tax returns; usually those folks are anticipating a refund. Citizens who might owe more taxes are a bit slower to file, and some request extensions to push back the dates that they must make the final accounting. For most of us, the three […]

House arrest

  By Joe Rector I hope that everyone has survived another soggy February. It was only a year ago that the rains inundated the area and left us struggling to dodge standing water puddles and pray that roof leaks didn’t suddenly appear. I, for one, have never done well handling being trapped inside. When Jim […]

Not perfect

By Joe Rector We hear that things are “perfect” all the time. Of late, that perfection has centered around a telephone call, but over the course of our lives, many claims of perfection are proclaimed. In truth, we all know nothing is perfect. Amy and I discovered soon after we began dating that we loved […]

Valve Oil

  By Joe Rector As soon as I unzipped the bag, that familiar smell wafted out. It was as strong now as back in the 1960s. I’m not sure what’s in the backpack that I carry to school, Gallatin, and any other traveling destination that created the same odor. Perhaps it’s the laptop and devices […]

Memories out with the floor

By Joe Rector The week before Christmas and the one during the holiday, workers completed laying new flooring in our house. They tore up the first-generation laminate stuff and replaced it with much sturdier, prettier flooring. I watched Matthew, Randy, Tyler, and Jimmy carry armloads of the stuff and toss the scrap into the back […]

I can only get better

By Joe Rector On more than one occasion, I’ve stated my dislike for resolutions. We all make them after much reflection and deliberation but break them with blinding speed. Most of the things we vow to change about ourselves deal with personal growth: read more, eat less, exercise daily, quit a habit. For the majority […]

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