Category Archives: James R. Coggins

Letter to Leo by James R. Coggins

In the course of my historical research, I came across the following letter in the Russian Archives. Books for Today Publishing Company, 123 Fourth Avenue, New York, New York Dear Mr. Tolstoy: Thank you for submitting your book War and … Continue reading

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Plush and Plastic Puppies by James R. Coggins

I learn so much from my grandchildren. For instance, if it were not for my grandchildren, I would never have become acquainted with Paw Patrol. And I would not have had the opportunity to watch each episode so often that … Continue reading

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Twice upon a Time by James R. Coggins

The handsome prince kissed the beautiful sleeping princess, and she woke up. They got married and lived happily ever after. That was in the good old days when writers could write stories they way they should be written. Nowadays, the … Continue reading

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How We Did It by James R. Coggins

A little while ago, my wife and I quietly celebrated our 41st wedding anniversary. Many friends our age and many people at our church just accepted this milestone as a normal part of married life. The week we were celebrating … Continue reading

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A Darkness More Than Night by James R. Coggins

“You don’t go into the darkness without the darkness going into you,” Michael Connelly says in his novel, A Darkness More Than Night. It is one of the very interesting and highly successful murder mysteries Connelly has written. In this … Continue reading

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Drummers Drumming by James R. Coggins

When my daughters were teenagers and began to bring home young men, I would attempt to engage them in conversation. One day, the conversation gravitated toward music. “Are you a musician?” I asked one prospect. Yeah,” he replied. “I’m a … Continue reading

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Who Were the Wise Men, and Why Did They Go to Bethlehem?

Matthew 2:1-12 tells the familiar story of the “wise men” coming to worship the baby Jesus. The story forms part of Christmas celebrations every year all over the world. In fact, in traditional church calendars, the wise men have their … Continue reading

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Christmas Belief

It is the season when everyone in the movies and on television talks about believing—but what they really mean is pretending. Belief is about committing yourself to someone or something. Pretending is about playing games and living in a fantasy … Continue reading

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Finding Our Calling

I have a young grandson who is having trouble deciding what he wants to be when he grows up. He keeps encountering new occupations and changing his mind. When he started school, he decided he wanted to be a principal. … Continue reading

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Away from the Puck

He is a young, professional hockey player, highly valued for his ability to score goals. For this reason, he has the potential to have a long and successful career as a professional athlete. He can be a star. But this … Continue reading

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Living for God in a Pagan Society: What Daniel Can Teach Us

Do you ever feel confused or disappointed with what is going on in the world? Do you feel helpless before unwelcome trends in society? Do you feel pressured and isolated by what seems to be a pagan, God-defying culture all … Continue reading

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Handling Criticism by James R. Coggins

Anyone with a public profile, including writers, inevitably receives criticism from to time. How do we handle it? I know criticism bothers some people greatly, but I have never had a great problem with it. Some of this has to … Continue reading

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Fortune Cookies

Have you ever experienced opening a fortune cookie and finding a message that seemed very appropriate to your situation? A while back, I was in a Chinese restaurant. My dinner companion ate three fortune cookies and found three messages: • … Continue reading

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It Was a Dark and Stormy Conversation

(A Short Story) “Harder was climbing out of a deep, dark well toward a distant, insistent ringing when his hand slipped under the pillow for his snub-nose 38 and he blasted the alarm clock, which was a replacement for the … Continue reading

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Advice to a First Year University Student

The universities from which I graduated often ask me for things (mostly money). One, a secular, government-run institution, recently asked me to contribute a short note of encouragement and advice to a first year student. I agreed. And then I … Continue reading

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