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Columns

  • BETH'S BYTES: Ode to Summer

     My 23 years have always been marked by summers. 

  • LETTERS FROM THE NEST: The most important meal

    By CHRISTIE ELKINS 

    As a child, I enjoyed many a breakfast with my grandparents. 

  • LETTERS FROM THE NEST: Summers and stickball

    Once upon a time—before the Internet, hand-held games, cell phones, cell phones with the Internet or cell phones with the Internet and games—there was this magical world right at our fingertips.
    Not a virtual existence, but rather a real life experience.
    That world is what we referred to as summer.

  • DENNIS THE FILM MENACE: 'ParaNorman' promises family fun with some scares

     While animated films were dominated by large Disney fares such asBrave or Wreck-It-Ralph, one smaller film stole the show as a smartly written, fun flick that flew under the radar due to the perceived dark subject matter.

  • ON HIGHER GROUND: God's mercy evident, even in sinful world

     For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now” (Romans 8:22).

    The devastation of a modern American city is still etched indelibly on my mind—whole   communities abandoned, shopping centers gutted, hospitals and churches boarded up. A vibrant, colorful New Orleans sat in ruins, the victim of extensive flooding and wind damage from Hurricane Katrina— one of that decade’s natural disasters.  

  • FROM A MOTHER'S HEART: 'Blessed are the merciful'

     Jesus said, “Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.” (Matthew 5:7). Perhaps the merciful are shown mercy because there are no more wonderful gifts for sinners to receive. 

    Mercy is its own reward. 

    The poor in spirit will receive the kingdom of heaven. 

    The mourners will receive comfort. 

    The meek will inherit the earth. 

    They that hunger and thirst after righteousness will be filled. 

    What do the merciful get? 

    Mercy.

  • 'What I saw'

    By Christie Elkins

    Unwashed faces, cold embraces, empty looks of sleepless nights. Tubs filled with trash, no place to bathe, toilets overflowing. 

    This is what I saw. 

    Drugs hidden in microwaves, meth labs where kids used to play, sleeping on the floor since someone took the bed away. 

    This is what I saw. 

    Wearing pajamas to school — since that was the only thing clean. Relying on free lunch — since they hadn’t eaten in days. 

  • On Higher Ground
  • Spiritually Speaking

     If you are a Christian and you love the Lord do you ever feel like searching your heart?

    I am going to paraphrase Psalm 139 NIV, please read it in its entirety.

    O Lord, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord.

    You hem me in, behind and before you have laid your hand upon me such knowledge is too lofty for me to attain.

  • Looking ahead

    When I was about 7, I watched Saved by the Bell with my older sister. The 90s sitcom made adolescence seem like so much fun. And the teenage characters looked like the coolest people I could meet. At the time, I didn’t realize the show wasn’t the most accurate portrayal of high school.
    I spent a lot of my time as a child wanting to be a teenager. For me, the next phase of life represented a place where I would be able to experience more fun and joy.
    Then I became a teenager. Those years weren’t miserable. But I didn’t go to Bayside either.