Jay Adams on Turning 80

Jay Adams’ books Competent to Counsel and Handbook of Church Discipline: Right and Privilege of Every Church Member (dissertation/handbook on Matthew 18) are books that have been influential in my life. I first discovered Adams whilst combing through my mother-in-law’s bookshelves.

Recently, Adams turned eighty! He reflected on this milestone in his blog. Below is a lovely excerpt. The post in it’s entirety can be found here.

At eighty, I ought to have some sage advice to give the young. Let’s see, if I were to pick one thing only, that might be of importance, what would it be? Hmmmm…

I know one! Prepare for old age. True, you may never make it; there are former students of mine who have died already. If you don’t have some activity that you can engage in for the Lord, you will probably end up a sour and regretful old person. There’s always something one can do so long as he has control of his basic faculties. If he is bedridden, he can pray.

Happy Birthday, Jay! I appreciate your gentle, practical thoughts on applications of scripture and for taking the time to write them down so as to share them with the rest of us. I am thankful for your clarity of mind – even for your eyesight – at 80. I’m looking forward to seeing how God will use you the rest of your days. You are loved!

Note: I’m tagging this with “Stewardship” as our days are a gift from God. Psalm 139 tells us he knows how many of them we will have before we’re even born. (This is a passage I reflect upon often!) How will we use the life God has given to us for His glory? Adam points out that no matter what our physical state, there are always ways we can use the abilities that we have for the Lord.

Trophy Wives

“In our society, women are repeatedly told ad nauseam, by those periodic packaged lies called women’s magazines, that it is their responsibility to deck themselves out in such a way that they ‘keep’ their man. A woman may be able to do this successfully in her twenties, and then have to work a little harder in her thirties and forties. Then, if she still buys all this foolishness, she really has to work in her fifties and sixties, because she is always competing with twenty-year-olds. If a wife treats fidelity in marriage as a prize to be obtained through competition, then somewhere, sometime, she is going to lose. This is the way of the world. But if she approaches it as a Christian woman, the older she gets, the more beautiful and serene she gets (1 Pet. 3:5)” (Her Hand in Marriage, pp. 50-51).

This quote is comforting, pressure-relieving and peace-giving on so many levels – because it’s the truth. Wilson recently featured this section of his book on his blog. His books and his blog are great resources, and I highly recommend them.


As I worked in the rain, chopping ice on our walkway (I discovered that if chop in a straight line, then crosshatch… the diamond cut ice lifts easier) the landlord walked by on the gravel driveway that loops toward his house. He was smoking and carrying a small bag of groceries.

I have noticed that lately he is making the grocery trips instead of his wife – who was walking to the store in the snow quite sturdily by herself when we first moved here. His wife is no longer driving. When he chauffeurs, he uses her car, which is much prettier and more comfortable than his black miniature van that he uses when he goes out by himself. He drives right up to their house so she doesn’t have to walk to her carport, which is on the other side of our house. He treats her very gently and with great care. It is so beautiful and so sad, it breaks my heart to watch. He walks has been more hunched than usual, with his head down, as though his heart is very heavy.

While shoveling, I saw some bright green flower buds poking up through the yukideoowareru ground, just on the edge of the retaining wall. They looked like they belonged to some species of daffodil or snow drop. Seeing them momentarily cheered up my winter blues.

My landlord is a farmer, and I know he loves flowers and all things growing. I smiled and said “konnichiwa” and motioned for him to come over. I leaned down and showed him the little buds.

He tugged at his navy blue coveralls and stooped over to get a closer look. Hundreds of lines on his leathery face contracted into one big crooked smile-wrinkle. The right corner of his mouth firmly gripped his cigarette.

Kore wa nan desu ka?” I asked. He motioned they’d grow to be about a foot tall and tried to tell me the name of the flower – which I repeated, but neither understood nor properly pronounced. With a little wave of his hand, he gave up with trying to name the flower, and simply said, “hana,” which means flower. (I know this word from the word “hanami“, which means flower viewing, and refers to throwing a little party to observe the cherry blossoms.)

I truly hope that thoughts of spring in this dreary, wintry land will help brighten his day. I am working up the nerve to ask “Daijoubu desu ka?” but, I don’t want to offend him by letting him know that I can tell the honne from the tatemae. I want to tell him that I pray for him and his family all the time, and I am trying to think of a way to do this in a way that would be comforting and not embarrassing to him.

I wish I could just wrap my arms around him and hug him.

Cucumber Slicing Knife Envy

I really enjoyed this video detailing many beautiful ways to slice a cucumber. While I am quite inspired to try some of these techniques, I’m experiencing a little knife envy.

The Japanese word for cucumber is “kyuri”. They are midori in color :)


He must increase; we must decrease.

For those who are following along online with the Sunday Morning Ladies Bible Study at Tully’s Coffee, this week’s study is on John 1:6-8; 15.

We are using Piper’s sermons on this passage as a guide. The corresponding one for this week can be found here.

John had been a confusing book to read because it seemed, as Piper pointed out, to be random and hard to follow with the interjections of John (the author) repeating over and over that John the Baptist was a witness. Piper offered an excellent explanation and application, and also helped me to understand and appreciate why John wrote the text the way he did.

Please let me know what you think of Piper’s points :)