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I think the congregation is making a great investment—and I want to congratulate you for it! The investment I’m talking about is pastoral study breaks; and, at the risk of sounding self-serving, on behalf of my fellow pastors, I want to express how helpful it is that the congregation give their pastors regular study breaks.

On this Good Friday, I thought I’d share one of my favorite hymns. It was written in 1664 by Samuel Crossman, a Puritan minister who (along with 2000 clergy) was expelled from the Church of England for opposing its Act of Uniformity (1662). Many years later the hymn fell into obscurity, but in 1925 English composer John Ireland recast the hymn into a tune of his own.

The Bible continually encourages us to live our few days with eternity in view, to build a life that has weight and worth in the eyes of holy angels and our Lord Jesus (1 Tim 5:21). What is at the heart of such a life? What is the essential ingredient that creates something of noble value and beauty in the eyes of God?

Well, this is an absolutely Pure-Michigan postcard August morning. Simply can’t be better. The beauty of a quiet summer morning is a precious gift from the Lord. I took my walk pre-sunrise this morning. It’s wonderful to watch the natural world waking up. I caught three does still in bed (the fawns, of course, were already up and at ‘em!)

One of the things I love about Harvest folk is your enthusiasm for learning! I love hearing about all the small groups, Bible studies, men’s and women’s groups, book discussion groups, and day-to-day discussions about things that matter! It’s wonderful. In the interest of learning, I’d like to share some of my online resources where I commonly turn to in order to keep up with current issues in the church and world.