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Leaving Salem

Leaving Salem

October 2011 Archives

“Please, Talk to Me”

posted by ronniemcbrayer

One Wednesday afternoon my twin sister and I were ripping up terra firma in my grandmother’s fallow garden. We were only five-years-old, just months before beginning kindergarten. My sister, in her clod-crushing zeal, miscalculated the distance between herself and me. […]

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It’s Never Too Late To Learn…

posted by ronniemcbrayer

Hilda is my dear friend and an example in perseverance and grace. Thanks to Sean Dietrich for this video. Hilda  

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“Hey Dad…Chill.”

posted by ronniemcbrayer

“You know Dad, you do a lot of good work in the world, but you need to chill out a little.” So said my eight-year-old son as I clicked the “off” button on my cell phone. He and I were […]

“Sweat It Not…Dude”

posted by ronniemcbrayer

When I was a bit younger and a bit braver, a group of friends and I shot the rapids on the Ocoee River in southeast Tennessee. The Ocoee, which I think is the Cherokee word for “terrified rafter” is a […]

The Greatest Gift

posted by ronniemcbrayer

On this day in history, October 18, 1970, the lives of Roy and Rita McBrayer changed forever. Roy, a shy boy and a month shy of his twenty-second year, and Rita, even younger, were two redneck kids weaving their way […]

Some Assembly Required

posted by ronniemcbrayer

Do you know the three most frightening words in the English language? “Some assembly required.” You order something online; a toy or a bicycle for your children. Or you go to a big box store to get a grill or […]

Pride Goeth Before A Tinkle

posted by ronniemcbrayer

Sometimes everything comes together perfectly: In life, at home, even in church. I had one of those perfect Sunday mornings not long ago. The weather was warm and pleasant. The sky was clear. It was one of those days in […]

The Preacher

posted by ronniemcbrayer

I grew up with a lot of religious rules. To violate these rules was to subject oneself to the violence of God. You may be familiar with these rules. No drinking, no smoking, no dancing, no mixed-bathing (a prospect that […]

Does Worship “Work?” Only If You Get Out.

posted by ronniemcbrayer

Churches are peculiar places. I have had the opportunity to serve a few of them. Some of my pastoral experiences have been awesome and rewarding – baptisms, weddings, the transformation of individuals and families. Some other experiences have been about […]

Don’t Mess With Mama!

posted by ronniemcbrayer

“Be sure your sins will find you out.” That’s what the Good Book says. My mama said it a lot too. In fact, my mother once arranged for the public display of this proverb. I’m just glad I wasn’t on […]

An Uncommon Communion

posted by ronniemcbrayer

Today is World Communion Sunday. It is an annual event in which Christians worldwide celebrate our oneness in Christ, in spite of our many differences and traditions. We pause to pray for unity and peace, and we recommit ourselves to […]

Previous Posts

An Apple Pie Could Change the World...Or at Least Change Yours
When my wife’s boss first moved to our small town it was more than a little culture shock. Raised on the slick windy streets ofChicago, he had mastered the ways of the urban jungle, but this experience had done little to prepare him for the Deep South. He had never eaten grits. He did not know wh

posted 4:16:42am Sep. 04, 2012 | read full post »

Learning to Let Go
There are things in our life that are very, very good. Money, family, jobs, church, possessions, friends: These are all good and in many cases irreplaceable, but you cannot build your life on these things and expect your life to sustain itself. These can all turn to sand. Money vanishes a lot quicke

posted 4:12:16am Aug. 31, 2012 | read full post »

Getting an Education
My children have returned to school; let the rejoicing begin. But I don't know why they go to school. They know everything already, just like I did when I was their age. See, when I was a kid, I really thought my father was something. I looked up to him as if he was a superhero who could leap tall b

posted 4:05:34am Aug. 28, 2012 | read full post »

Step into the Water
My youngest son was baptized recently. I had the honor of dipping his little shaggy head under the river that runs near our home. It wasn't quite like my own baptism, however. When I was his age, however, I was terrified of water. I didn’t learn to swim until I was an adult, so commanded by Jesus

posted 4:57:42am Aug. 24, 2012 | read full post »

Vow-Keeping Faith
When the ancients spoke of faith, they used a word that described a signature on a contract or a title deed. Faith was the oath that lay beneath such a document. A buyer may not have yet taken full possession of the property, but the closing documents gave them the faith that they one day would. Fa

posted 4:53:56am Aug. 21, 2012 | read full post »

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