Posts belonging to Category People

C. S. Lewis’ Homeschool Schedule

As a child C. S. Lewis attended a number of schools (which he hated), but in 1914 he moved to Bookham at Surrey to study privately with his father’s former tutor, William T. Kirkpatrick. Lewis homeschooled under Kirkpatrick for the next two years before receiving a scholarship to Oxford in December of 1916. In a letter dated October 12, 1915, Lewis described his typical day of schooling to a friend. (Lewis was 16 years old at the time, soon to turn 17.)

Typical Schedule:

  • Breakfast and a short walk
  • Thucydides and Homer
  • 15-minute break
  • Tacitus
  • Lunch at 1:00
  • Free time until tea
  • Tea at 4:30
  • Plato and Horace
  • Supper at 7:30
  • German and French until 9:00 p.m.
  • Free time until bed (usually about 10:20 p.m.)

As soon as my bed room door is shut I get into my dressing gown, draw up a chair to my table and produce, like Louis Moore, note book and pencil. Here I write up my diary for the day, and then turning to the other end of the book devote myself to poetry, either new stuff or polishing the old. If I am not in the mood for that I draw faces and hands and feet etc for practice. This is the best part of the day of course, and I am usually in a very happy frame of mind by the time I slip into bed.

(Source: They Stand Together: The Letters of C. S. Lewis to Arthur Greeves, edited by Walter Hooper, p. 84)

So, any homeschoolers out there who follow the same schedule? Anyone who wants to? 🙂

HT: The Scriptorium

Click here for Narnia products at Amazon.

Related posts:
    • Click here for more Narnia related posts.
    • Click here for Countdown to Caspian roundup.
    • Click here for Narnia sermon series.

Pastors Name Top 10 Most Influential Preachers

Lifeway Research recently conducted a survey asking Protestant pastors to “name the top three living Christian preachers that most influence you.” Billy Graham topped the list followed by Chuck Swindoll, Charles Stanley and Rick Warren. Here is the complete list:

  1. Billy Graham, preacher, evangelist, founder of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.
  2. Charles Swindoll, senior pastor of Stonebriar Community Church in Frisco, Texas, and founder of Insight for Living Ministries.
  3. Charles Stanley, senior pastor of First Baptist Church, Atlanta, and founder of In Touch Ministries.
  4. Rick Warren, senior pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., and author of the best-selling book, “The Purpose-Driven Life.”
  5. John MacArthur, pastor-teacher of Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, Calif., and president and featured teacher of the Grace to You ministry.
  6. Barbara Brown Taylor, religion teacher at Piedmont College in northeast Georgia and author of 12 books including “An Altar in the World.”
  7. David Jeremiah, founder of Turning Point Radio and Television Ministries and senior pastor of Shadow Mountain Community Church in San Diego County, Calif.
  8. Max Lucado, minister of writing and preaching at the Oak Hills Church in San Antonio, Texas, and the recipient of three Christian Book of the Year awards.
  9. John Piper, pastor for preaching at Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis and author of more than 30 books, including “Desiring God.”
  10. Andy Stanley, senior pastor of North Point Community Church, Buckhead Church, and Browns Bridge Community Church – all in the Atlanta area – and founder of North Point Ministries.

I am familiar with most of these names, and I would say most of them have had a positive influence in my life. Still, none of them have influenced me as much as the pastors who have faithfully preached God’s word to me over the years in the various churches where I have attended.

Steven Curtis Chapman on Choosing to Believe

CT interview: Steven Curtis Chapman shares honestly about the challenge of choosing to believe in the months following the loss of his youngest daughter, 5-year-old Maria Sue, a year and a half ago.

We have absolutely questioned God and had our doubts and said, “Is this whole thing true? Is this real?” I sat on our tour bus last summer and called Scotty Smith, my pastor, after spending a very difficult night of wrestling with God. We were getting ready to go do an interview with People magazine or Larry King or somebody, and I was just in tears, calling my pastor and saying, “Is it really true? Is it really true? Can God be trusted?” … I needed to hear my pastor speak truth again to me. I needed to hear somebody say again, here’s what’s true.

That has been an important process, the whole thing of taking every thought captive and saying, God, this is what I choose to believe. Because I’ve found myself, especially in the first few days and weeks after Maria went to heaven—and there’s still moments of this—that I could almost feel myself being sucked into this black hole of doubt and despair. Of saying, “God, if I let myself keep going in this direction, there seems to be no bottom, no end to this, and I’ll never be able to escape from it.”

At the hospital at Vanderbilt, literally within an hour of knowing that my little girl was in heaven with Jesus, I found myself having to make a choice, when I would start to feel myself and everything in me being sucked into this place, this abyss. I would begin to say, “Blessed be the name of the Lord. You give. You take away. But, God, I trust you. I trust you. You are faithful. You are good. I trust you. I trust you.” And as I would say that, literally just choose to make that declaration in the midst of this, I would almost physically feel myself being pulled back from that place. And I’d start to breathe again.

HT: Justin Taylor

Related posts:
    • Steven Curtis Chapman’s Daughter Killed
    • Steven Curtis Chapman on Good Morning America
    • MaryBeth Chapman on Maria’s Death One Year Later

Interview with Pixar Director Pete Docter

Pixar | Up | 2009Pete Docter is the director of the new Pixar film, Up, which releases Friday this week. Pete also directed Monsters, Inc. and was a writer and supervising animator for the original Pixar film, Toy Story. Pete is a Christian, and Radix Magazine interviewed him back in 1998 about his work and faith. Here are some excerpts from the interview:

Radix: How has having a child changed who you are as an artist?

Docter: Work-wise, I definitely see things differently. There are things I would find kind of quirky or weird, that might have a tinge of violence to it, but as a single guy, or even as a married guy, I’d think, “It’s funny.” But then when you have a kid, you think, “Oh, he’ll be watching this. I don’t know how I’d feel about that.” As a Christian, having my son has made me even more amazed by the whole Creation, when I watch him grow and start to connect things in his brain. I say, “That’s amazing.” It leaves me speechless.

Radix: How would you say that being a Christian affects how you do your work?

Docter: Years ago when I first spoke at church, I was kind of nervous about talking about Christianity and my work. It didn’t really connect. But more and more it seems to be connecting for me. I ask for God’s help, and it’s definitely affected what I’m doing. It’s helped me to calm down and focus. There were times when I got too stressed out with what I was doing, and now I just step back and say, “God, help me through this.” It really helps you keep a perspective on things, not only in work, but in relationships.

At first you hire people based purely on their talent, but what it ends up is that people who really go far are good people. They’re good people to work with, and I think God really helps in those relationships.

Radix: I know you do a lot of praying, and that’s a big part of the artistic part of what you guys do.

Docter: Yes. You could probably work on a live-action movie that takes maybe six months hating everybody else and you’d still have a film. But these animation projects take three or four years, and it’s really difficult to do without having a good relationship with the people you’re working with.

Radix: Do you ever see yourself making a more explicitly Christian movie?

Docter: Not at this point. I don’t know that that’s really me. I don’t feel so comfortable with that. Even if you have a moral to a story, if you actually come out and say it, it loses its power. Not that we’re trying to be sneaky or anything, but you have more ability to affect people if you’re not quite so blatant about it. Does that make sense?

Radix: That seems right in line with what Jesus’ parables were too. He tended not to come right out and explain, “This is what I was trying to say.”

Docter: To me art is about expressing something that can’t be said in literal terms. You can say it in words, but it’s always just beyond the reach of actual words, and you’re doing whatever you can to communicate a sense of something that is beyond you.

HT: CT Movies Blog

Click here to view the Up trailer.

MaryBeth Chapman on Maria’s Death One Year Later

MaryBeth Chapman shares her feelings on the anniversary of her daughter Maria’s accidental death one year ago.

Here is what I FEEL as this day starts out. Sad beyond sad that she isn’t here, angry and mad that this had to happen, confused and bewildered that it had to involve Maria’s big brother that absolutely adored her, paralyzing fear that I won’t be able to pull through the pain and be able to completely let her go…because she wasn’t mine to begin with, and speechless to know how to grieve my baby girl who gave me soooo much laughter and joy and then turn around and hold tightly to the young man who is walking through this tragedy at 18 years old…Maria’s buddy, Will, (the bravest young man I know!), and at my darkest place, I wonder…God, where are you and why in the world would you choose us to walk this out…It isn’t fair!

And then, all of a sudden, I hear this other voice in my head that reminds me over and over again of not what I FEEL, but what I KNOW…It might on certain days be buried deep down in my heart and have a hard time computing to my brain, but here is what I know and what I choose to believe, over and over again…even when it is really just a bad day! I know God loves me and my family, I know God is sovereign and He knows what is best for us, I know He has our days numbered and makes NO mistakes, I know that He will bring beauty from ashes…He has too…that is what I cling to in order to make it through another 24 hours.

HT: Tim Challies

Related posts:
    • Steven Curtis Chapman’s Daughter Killed
    • Steven Curtis Chapman on Good Morning America

Francis Schaeffer died 25 years ago today

Author and pastor Francis Schaeffer died 25 years ago today. Schaeffer’s books had a big impact on my own Christian growth and development. Schaeffer’s main strength was his ability to grasp the big picture and show you how it all fit together. He was an engaging thinker who helped you to think about the whole of life from a Christian point of view.

Here is an interesting interview with author Os Guinness on Francis Schaeffer that points out some of Schaeffer’s strengths and limitations. If you are interested in reading some Schaeffer for yourself, these are the books that I would most recommend:

60 Years in an Iron Lung

Martha Mason | Iron Lung

Martha Mason passed away last week at the age of 71 after spending 60 years living inside an iron lung. Mason was paralyzed from the neck down due to a childhood case of polio and was one of about 30 Americans left who live full time in iron lungs. There are no documented cases of anyone living in an iron lung for as long as Mason. From the New York Times:

From her horizontal world — a 7-foot-long, 800-pound iron cylinder that encased all but her head — Ms. Mason lived a life that was by her own account fine and full, reading voraciously, graduating with highest honors from high school and college, entertaining and eventually writing.

She chose to remain in an iron lung, she often said, for the freedom it gave her. It let her breathe without tubes in her throat, incisions or hospital stays, as newer, smaller ventilators might require. It took no professional training to operate, letting her remain mistress of her own house, with just two aides assisting her.

“I’m happy with who I am, where I am,” Ms. Mason told The Charlotte Observer in 2003. “I wouldn’t have chosen this life, certainly. But given this life, I’ve probably had the best situation anyone could ask for.”

Okay, no complaining about anything for me today — and maybe tomorrow, too!

HT: Neatorama

Congratulations Coral Ridge, New City and Tullian!

Tullian Tchividjian

Some of you have been following and praying for the proposed merger between Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church and New City Church in South Florida. This morning Tullian Tchividjian preached his candidating sermon at Coral Ridge. The membership of Coral Ridge voted following the service at a special congregational meeting with 91% of the congregation voting to support the call. So, it is now official. The two congregations will unite for their first worship service on Easter Sunday, April 12th.

This is a culmination of many months of meetings, planning and prayer between the leadership of the two congregations. Please continue to pray for a smooth transition for both congregations as they come together to serve the Lord in South Florida. (Note: Coral Ridge was founded and pastored by Dr. D. James Kennedy who went home to be with the Lord in September, 2007 at the age of 76. Tullian will be the church’s second pastor.)

Related post:  Interview with Tullian Tchividjian

Football Coach Tony Dungy Retires

Indianapolis Colts head coach Tony Dungy announces his retirement.

Dungy, 53, told his staff and some players on Monday morning after taking a week to discuss his options with his wife, Lauren. He will be succeeded by associate head coach Jim Caldwell.

Dungy coached the Colts for seven seasons, including the 2006-07 season when he became the first African-American coach to win the Super Bowl. At the time, he said he was just as proud as being an evangelical coach in the big game as he was of making black history.

Dungy said he wanted to spend more time with his family in Tampa, where he coached for six seasons, and do more work in the community.

“I think I’ve got a responsibility to be home a little bit more, be available to my family a little bit more and do some things to help make our country better,” Dungy said. “I don’t know what that is right now, but we’ll see.”

I have really appreciated Tony Dungy’s testimony over the years. Whether winning or losing, he has shown a great attiude at all times and presented a strong testimony for Christ.

Related articles:

Duggar Family Welcomes 18th Child

Duggar Family Welcomes 18th Child

Michelle Duggar gave birth to her 18th child Thursday. The USA Today report is below, and you can read more about the Duggar family here.

An Arkansas woman has given birth to her 18th child. Michelle Duggar delivered the baby girl by Caesarean section Thursday at Mercy Medical Center in Rogers. The baby, named Jordyn-Grace Makiya Duggar, weighed 7 pounds, 3 ounces and was 20 inches long.

“The ultimate Christmas gift from God,” said Jim Bob Duggar, the father of the 18 children. “She’s just absolutely beautiful, like her mom and her sisters.”

The Duggars now have 10 sons and eight daughters.

Jim Bob Duggar said Michelle started having contractions Wednesday night. She needed the C-section, her third, because the baby was lying sideways. Jim Bob said both baby and mother were doing well Thursday night.

Related post:  Meet the Duggar Family

James MacDonald Has Cancer

Pastor James MacDonald of Harvest Bible Fellowship announced today that he has cancer. Some of you may be familiar with Pastor MacDonald from his books or through his radio ministry Walk in the Word. Here is part of what he had to say today in his announcement:

I have cancer. This of course confirms what I have taught so many times from God’s word . . . the effects of sin visit themselves randomly upon the creation in varying degrees and at various times (John 9:1-3). God promises only that His grace will be sufficient as His power is made perfect in weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9-10), and that He has a purpose in the life of His child that will advance our good if we submit to what He has lovingly allowed (Hebrews 12:5-13).

So that’s it! I have cancer and I can diagnose the theology as well as any oncologist can diagnose the pathology. But here’s the great part. I truly believe those things. I am not especially anxious, I am not struggling with God’s goodness or asking a lot of penetrating ‘why’s?’ I am more aware of my pending mortality and the brevity of this life by eternal standards …

I have a tenderness to the pain of others and a deeper burden for those closest to me. I am more acutely aware of my sin and much less willing to weigh it or measure it or manage it. I just want to be clean and close and consecrated in my walk with Christ; and I am, more than ever. Truly!!! And for that I am very thankful. I have experienced an outpouring of love from our congregation and beyond that has made me more appreciative than ever to pastor a church and belong to the body of Christ. God is good, I’m gonna get through this in God’s way and in His time and I love Him more than ever. Today is a good day, and because of it, no matter how this ‘day’ ends, tomorrow will be even better. Isn’t it great to know the Lord and love His word and walk in fellowship with His followers? How blessed I am!

Please keep Pastor macDonald and his family in prayer as he begins radiation treatments at the Loma Linda University Medical Center in Southern California.

John Milton’s 400th Birthday

Today is John Milton’s 400th birthday, so I will be sharing some Milton with you this week. John Milton is generally regarded as the greatest English poet after Shakespeare. His most famous work is the masterful epic poem Paradise Lost. He also wrote other poems, as well as a number of political works.

Milton aspired at a young age to write a great epic poem. In order to do this, he devoted himself to years of study. He learned Latin, Greek, Hebrew, French, Spanish, and Italian in his undergraduate years. After receiving his M.A., at age 24 he undertook six years of private study in preparation for his poetical career. During this time he immersed himself in both ancient and modern works of theology, philosophy, history, politics, literature, and science. He also wrote several lengthy poetical works.

In the 1640’s Milton’s poetical ambitions got sidetracked by the English Civil War. Milton spent the next decade writing mostly political works. He did not return to poetry until after he went blind in 1652 at the age of forty-three. He wrote Paradise Lost during the years 1658-1663 and died in the year 1667.

Athough Milton was not orthodox in his beliefs (he had a deficient view of the trinity, and he rejected the duality of body and spirit), his works are well worth reading and studying by Christians. Paradise Lost in particular, with its focus on the fall of man, has many rich insights for believers.

Related posts:

Also of interest: An Interview with Leland Ryken about Milton’s Paradise Lost