David Epps's blog

The Marines need your help

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U. S. Marines are usually thought of as hard-charging, tough, relentless warriors who, when necessary, wage war and wreak havoc and destruction upon all who oppose freedom.

But try telling that to the children, who see another side of these tough leathernecks around Christmas time. During this time of the year, Marines lend a helping hand to Santa and bring joy and toys to millions of children.

Since 1947, Marines, active, reserve, and veterans have participated in The Marine Corps Toys for Tots program, an IRS-recognized 501(c)(3) not-for-profit charity. Read More»

Baptizing the holidays

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When I was a younger pastor, the distinctions between black and white were very sharp. Sin was sin, wrong was wrong, and hell was hot.

I still believe that hell is hot but it just may be that not everything I thought qualified as a sin was actually a sin.

For example, time once was that, if someone asked my advice, I assumed they were bound to take my advice and anyone who did otherwise was in rebellion against their pastor. Read More»

Rediscovering Mike

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On the first day of the first full week of Marine Corps boot camp training at Parris Island, S.C., I met my assigned bunk mate, a young man of about 17, whom I will call “Mike.”

On a certain morning, one of the tough drill instructors was growling about and seeking someone to harass mercilessly. As he went from recruit to recruit, he screamed the question, “Why do you want to be a Marine?!” Any answer given was ridiculed and the recruit ordered to execute a gazillion push-ups for giving whatever sorry answer he gave. Read More»

Perils of social media

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Several days ago, a news outlet reported that a company now exists which offers businesses a unique service: the company will scour the social media on behalf of employers to discover what job applicants and employees are posting, and have posted, on social media sites such as Facebook and My Space. Apparently, this company has the ability to even discover postings that have been deleted. Read More»

Well done!

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As the pastor of a local church that is attempting to minister to people during difficult economic times, I fully understand that a church cannot give to every person in need. There’s always a limited supply of money and there will always be an unlimited amount of need.

In our church, during these tough times, we try, as best we can on limited funds, to first assist those of our congregation who are hit by the economic crisis. Once in a while, we may be able to help some in the community. Unfortunately, we simply can’t meet every need. Read More»

The Crab Effect

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When I was at East Tennessee State University working toward my Bachelor of Social Work degree, I learned of the “Crab Effect.”

The Crab Effect can be illustrated in the following story:

While vacationing in Florida, a man observed a bucket of crabs on a fishing dock. While all of the crabs were either motionless or squirming at the bottom of the bucket, one little crab kept crawling up the side in an effort to reach the top. Read More»

A rookie no more

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In the police world and in the professional sports world, a rookie stays a rookie for about a year. I’m not sure when the rookie status comes to a close in the motorcycling world, but, if a year is the standard, then I am no longer a rookie.

It has been just over a year since I took a motorcycle riders class and earned my motorcycle endorsement on my driver’s license. Since that time I have put some 12,000 miles on my 1999 Harley-Davidson Road King and have made three extended road trips to other states. Read More»

The Daughters of the American Revolution

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A couple of months ago, I received a call from Susie Morrison who asked if I would be willing to be a guest speaker at the Fayette Starr’s Mill Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. The requested topic would be “The Constitution and God,” since the members of the DAR would be kicking off Constitution Week. I immediately accepted. Read More»

A week of anniversaries

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This has been and will be for me and my family a week of anniversaries.

Last Monday, my wife and I celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary. I referred to the event in church as the “completion of 40 years of a life sentence without parole.”

Guys grinned, women glared: so I guess I am in trouble — again. Read More»

The first victim of 9/11

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Robert Emmett Judge was killed on Sept. 11, 2001. The son of Irish Catholic immigrants, Judge was one of a pair of fraternal twins. He grew up in Brooklyn, N.Y., during the great depression and developed, at an early age, a love for the poor, often giving his last quarter to beggars on the street.

Judge’s father died of a slow and painful illness when the boy was 6 and Judge worked to shine shoes to earn money for the family. At the age of 15, he entered a formation process to become a Franciscan. Read More»

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