Ponderings by Doug

I spent the night in Ruston in the summer of 1967. I remember absolutely nothing about that evening. We were returning home from a rare summer vacation. We traveled from Decatur, Alabama to Austin, Texas to visit an uncle. We returned via the southern route. The northern route to Austin took us through Arkansas. I do remember a water pump going out on our car on a Sunday in Texarkana. I can’t remember if that was Arkansas or Texas.

I suppose mom didn’t want to push her luck and drive back the way we came. Ruston was a stop over on our journey home. My mother was exhausted from driving while keeping three, free-range-car-roaming-brats in line. We stopped for the night.

Until her death, my mother preached that Ruston was the prettiest, friendliest town she’d ever visited. She loved to talk about Ruston.

In the summer of 1989, I moved to Arcadia to pastor the Methodist church there. That was back in the day. We made pilgrimages to Ruston for McDonald’s, Burger King, Taco Bell, great Chinese food, and to visit the “old” Walmart. I made hospital visits at the former Lincoln General.

My connections to Ruston and Trinity United Methodist Church are long and deep. I have personally known the pastors back to Doug McGuire. I would go flying with Doug. I always dreamed that one day I would have the opportunity to pastor this great church. (Yeah, Methodist ministers keep a list of all the churches we want to pastor.) I am honored and excited to be the pastor of Trinity. For me and my family, this is our dream come true.

I am also honored to write these weekly articles. They will not go deep into the weeds of any subject. If you are looking for high church liturgical or ecclesiastical comment or a discussion of Infralapsarianism, you won’t get it from me. At times, I write to entertain. Other times I write to inform. I do channel my inner Andy Rooney and that pops out in my writing and you will recognize it quickly. I’m still dealing with the trauma of serving on the Natchitoches Parish Council. I have stories about why a preacher should never NEVER be involved with elected office.

My spiritual goal is to have you think about God in some new way. Not that God is new. He is the same “yesterday, today and forever.” I’ll attempt to get you to look away from your screen for just a moment and ponder the power and majesty of God in Jesus Christ. If I am a catalyst for your dwelling on God, then I have done “good.”

I won’t use bait and switch, but I will in not so subtle ways, invite you to find a church. Yes, I think Trinity is a great place to start your church exploration. I am a cheerleader for all the churches in Ruston and believe the church is a great place to be and to grow.

So many people have welcomed us to Ruston. Even more folks have welcomed us to Trinity. Thank you for your hospitality. I agree with my mother. Ruston is a beautiful town with wonderful people.
In the spirit of hospitality, I welcome you to my weekly corner of the Lincoln Parish Journal. I hope this place will always be worth a look for you.

The digital shenanigans begin in earnest next week.

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