Saturday, March 11, 2017


What is the source of Christian joy? We live in “the present evil world” (Gal 1:4) with darkness all around us. We look at the world and see that the imagination of men’s hearts is only evil continually (Gen 6:5). Paul says he was “troubled on every side, but not distressed.” (2 Cor 4:9) Why not distressed? Because “God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts.” (v.6).

As Christians, we have “all joy and peace in believing.” We need not be cast down by the events going on in the world around us. As Moody says, “Though it is dark just here, remember it is light somewhere else.  . . . If you are down in the valley amidst the thick fog and the darkness, get a little higher; get a little nearer to Christ, and know more of him.” (The Way to God, pp. 131-2 )

Our joy is anchored in Christ and it is no more effected by the sin around us than our love is, despite growing in all knowledge and discernment. (Phil 1:10) Abraham’s faith was in no way harmed by the sins of Sodom. He was entirely separate from them, and it was no concern of his what the Sodomites did at their public games or performed in their theaters. So it is for the Christian who is separate from the world and its forms of entertainment.

Those Christians, however, who have pitched their tents towards Sodom or even moved into town to participate in its activities and enjoy its entertainment, will be like Lot who “vexed his righteous soul day by day” because he was continually “seeing and hearing” their unrighteous deeds. (2 Peter 2:8) Indeed, those who entertain themselves with the world’s affairs are in grave danger of losing their joy. They will be always in a tizzy about what they see on the television screen and what they hear from Washington or Hollywood. The answer to this is not to get themselves more comfortable in Sodom and to go on watching its entertainment and teaching their children to do so. The answer is to get more of Christ and leave the world to the world. Let the dead bury the dead and get on with life in Christ.

Much of the sin of Sodom, according to the Scriptures, was: “fullness of bread and abundance of idleness.” (Ezekiel 16:49). A culture that caters to the flesh in the same way that Sodom did can not provide suitable entertainment for Christians, and they should not be surprised if their righteous souls are vexed when they indulge in it. If, however, they are not vexed, they should question whether they have righteous souls.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Kids' Sweaters

Most of my knitting is packed up and given away before I get around to posting a picture, but recently a couple of sweaters returned to me in a most delightful package.

These are variations on Lillie's Little Sweater by Carol Anderson of Cottage Creations, a nice, basic sweater, not nearly as cute as the grandkids, but a fun project and a wearable product.

New Desk

This isn't just a new desk, it is an expression of love from a talented son. It fits perfectly in a little corner of my dining room. No excuses now for not making posts.

Saturday, January 7, 2017


The following extracts from the autobiography of Dan Smith gives us an historical glimpse of what Christian courtship was like prior to World War II:

A broken romance nearly shattered me. Edith was the wholesome and most beautiful daughter of a Methodist minister, the Rev. George Growcott. . . .
Mr. Growcott's rules concerning his daughter were very strict. The door closed on me at 9:30 p.m. sharp. Only once did I fail to deliver the goods and that when Edith slipped and sprained her ankle. But I was really no romantic with the girls. I was so reserved that it took me many a day before I summoned up courage to kiss her. That was quite an accomplishment because, up to that point of time, I could not remember ever having kissed my mother. I did so later - once - when I left home for China. We Scottish are so undemonstrative, however, that it was a kind of embarrassment both to mother and me.

My romance suddenly came to an end. I was always preaching and Edith was always waiting. One Saturday night  with three appointments on the Sunday, we were walking in the country and, feeling that I was not paying her due attention, Edith stopped, thinking to jolt me to an awareness of her presence. But I was so immersed in thought for messages that I walked three miles to Leven village before realizing she was not with me. That did it! She went off to London to train as a nurse and found a more attentive suitor, But the loss of Edith hurt, and I determined never to have another love.
~ "Pilgrim of the Heavenly Way" Daniel Smith pp.41-42

Poor Dan would have done well to have had a chaperone like many proponents of modern courtship doctrines require. Perhaps the chaperone would have brought his attention to the fact that he had neglected his girl. No harm, however, since Dan was later married in a fashion which some proponents of the courtship doctrines may applaud. Knowing nothing but her name and the fact that she was a missionary on the opposite side of his disctrict in China, he became convinced that Catherine would be his wife. Three days after meeting her, he proposed. They would have been married immediately, but the China Inland Mission (with whom they both worked) recommended that he take the vacation the mission had planned for him before marrying. Three days and a thirty-one page letter that he wrote while on vacation were the extent of the courtship. With the vacation just taken, there was no time for a honeymoon. Thus, the two married barely knowing one another. Despite forty years of faithful service together in the Lord's work, I dare say very few even of the most hardy adherents of "courtship" would recommend closely following this example. The biography, however, is well worth reading, spiritual in content and full of interesting stories. His faith, worthy of following.
Pilgrim front cover

Saturday, December 10, 2016


There is a beautiful, heartwarming story going around Facebook about a woman who asked her husband to carry her down the stairs every day for a month before she would consent to a divorce. The man agreed, and in the process of spending these few minutes a day with his wife, he discovered a renewed love for her. It is a moving story, and if true, it is the story of a very wise woman who had an almost super-human ability to control her passions. Nonetheless, the story, when considered closely, in efffect supports the false idea that romantic feelings are necessary for a couple to stay married. What if the husband had found carrying his wife to be a daily chore uneased by the feelings of love that lighten every burden? Would he then have been justified in carrying out his plan for divorce?

Emotions are given too high a priority in almost every sphere of modern life. I have nothing agaist emotions, and I think past generations have sometimes given them less emphasis than they deserve. God intends us to have feelings and to enjoy them, and they most certainly have their place. Nonetheless, feelings should never be allowed to become our rule of faith and practice. Our feelings should be consulted and heavily weighed when we are deciding whom to marry (a matter which God has left open to our own choice), but they should not be consulted at all when we are determining whether or not to stay married. On that subject God has spoken, and His Word alone should be consulted.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Poetry Book

In order to present Box T and the Choices That Made It God's Ranch to the friends of Box T Bible and Saddle Camp, I was forced to learn to self publish. It was actualy kind of fun and really not all that hard, so knowing now what to do, I have also published a book of my poems:

This book includes over 100 poems written between 1993 and the present. Most of them are spiritual poems on Bible themes. The book is available on Amazon where you can also take a look inside and see the table of contents and some of the poems.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Box T: God's Ranch

Nearly two years ago I started a memoir of Box T Bible and Saddle Camp. It is now available from Amazon:

The price of the book reflects Amazon's charge for publishing and distributing.
Anyone interested in buying quantities, please contact:
Nita Brainard