Education: BA Erskine College, South Carolina
MDiv Erskine Seminary, South Carolina
D.Min Columbia Seminary, Atlanta GA
Certified, Church Business Administration, Union Seminary, Richmond VA
One of my favorite illustrations: Mother Teresa was once observed by a reporter. "How can you keep on working, knowing this poverty will never end," the reporter asked.
She replied, "God didn’t call me to be successful. Just faithful."
Family: My wife Ginny has a BA in Christian Education and a Masters in Early Childhood Education. We met when we were students at Erskine College and have been married since 1975. We have one son, Kirk, who is a student at the University of Central Florida in Orlando.
Best advice given to me about preaching: "When you preach, look around and see someone’s getting ready to divorce, someone’s facing criminal charges, someone just proposed marriage, someone’s having an affair, someone just found Christ, someone is doubting Christ, someone was beaten by her husband last night, someone beat his son this morning, someone is thinking of taking an overdose of pills, someone just got a job. Preach to those people, not to your seminary professors." -- The dean of my seminary.
Hobbies: Astronomy -- I’ve owned the same telescope for over 30 years and I find this to be a prayerful and meditative hobby -- "When I consider the moon and stars you have made, what is man that thou art mindful of him?"
Reading, walking (another prayerful activity), writing.
If I could Preach one more time, I would say...: If I could preach only one more sermon, I’d say, "Little children, love one another." Legen has it that when the Apostle John was very old he would occasionally preach. One of the last apostles on earth, he could have preached about parables not recorded in the Gospels. Or he could have said something like, "I remember the time I was alone with Jesus and he turned to me and said..." But instead, all this apostle ever said was a one sentence sermon: "Little children, love one another."
Something funny that happened while preaching: In seminary, I was a circuit rider and often preached in small churches. One church was Bethia, with a congregation of 10. When we prayed the Lord’s Prayer, the only one to join me in saying the prayer was a little girl. Unfortunately, she said it louder and faster than I did. This was not a problem until I was in the middle of the prayer and she came to the end. That’s when she started with "Now I lay me down to sleep." I lost my place in the prayer and have carried a copy with me in the pulpit ever since.
What I want on my tombstone: Here lies a man who died at an unbelievable old age.