Archive for August 10, 2013

The Time My Grandmother Met Franklin Delano Roosevelt   Leave a comment


Above:  President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, December 27, 1933

Photographer = Elias Goldensky (1868-1943)

Image Source = Library of Congress


Reproduction Number = LC-USZ62-117121


Nell Barrett Taylor (1915-2001), my grandmother, told me about the time she met Franklin Delano Roosevelt before he ran for President.  He was, of course, the Governor of New York from 1929 to 1933, and had been going to Warm Springs, Georgia, before he became the Governor.  In the early 1930s my grandmother was a student at LaGrange College, LaGrange, Georgia.  Her roommate’s father knew FDR, so through that network the two young women met the future President.

They met him at Columbus (to the south of LaGrange) and spent much of a day with him, riding in his car–the one with hand controls.  But this was the age of in loco parentis, so there was a curfew at LaGrange College.  Students were supposed to be in bed and to have the lights turned out by a certain hour.   And the Governor could not get them back to campus before that time.  So he called the college, obtained permission for them to arrive late, and drove them to the campus.

It is a good story–one worth repeating.



What Shall I Do With Jesus?   1 comment


Above:  Ecce Homo, by Antonio Ciseri

(Image in the Public Domain)


Matt. 27, 22

1.  Jesus is a fact that must be considered.  Even his enemies deny not his life and works.  He is a character or person no one can ignore.  Everyone must answer this question.  It was important to Pilate and is to us.  The destiny of individuals and nations depend upon the answers given.

2.  Some try to escape the question

(a)  by refusing to decide, but that is only to reject him;

(b)  by substituting other virtues instead of believing in Christ;

(c) by laying the blame on others, or circumstances or temptation.

But if he is Christ nothing can excuse one.

3.  Rejecting Christ is the great sin of the world, trampling under foot such wonderful love.  Who sins against love will sin against law.

4.  Some day the question will be:  How can I do without him, ’tis that really every day.  But especially in temptation, sickness, death, and the judgment how can I do without him, his divine love, his divine help, his comforting presence?

“I must have the Saviour with me.”  Will you accept him now?


Barretts and Taylors   2 comments

Barretts and Taylors

A Photograph from Late 1946

Photograph Courtesy of Randolph Fleming Taylor

From left to right:

Lucy Seguin Barrett, my grandaunt;

Randolph Fleming Taylor, my uncle;

John Dodson Taylor, III, my father;

Sarah Claiborne Barrett (1908-1954), my grandaunt;

Margaret Elizabeth Barrett Bartlett, my grandaunt

The Death of Jesus   3 comments


Above:  Crucifixion of Christ, March 31, 1884

Image Source = Library of Congress


Reproduction Number = LC-DIG-pga-03024


Luke 23, 33-38

1.  Prophecy foretold the event, as did Jesus.  He laid down his life.  “No man taketh it from me.”  It was part of the Divine plan.

2.  Jesus chose the time of his death.  “Mine hour is not yet come” is used frequently.  At last he said, “the hour is come” (Jno. 17, 1).  “Go tell that fox”–Luke 13, 32.  “Not at the feast”–Matt. 26, 5.  “What thou doest do quickly”–Jno. 13, 27.  Jesus thrust it forward ere they were ready.

3.  The charge was blasphemy, making himself equal with God–his soul.  He either is, or else an imposter and false swearer.  To profess admiration for the man and deny his Divinity is to betray him with a kiss.

4.  They crucify him between two thieves at 9 o’clock.  Darkness from 12 to 3 o’clock.  The crowd mock him.

5.  His concern for others–prays for his slayers, provides a home for his mother, answers the penitent cries to the Father, declares it is finished & commends his  spirit to the Father & yields up his spirit.  The earthquake bellows & the tombs open.

6.  Why all this suffering?  He did no wrong, as said Herod once & Pilate six times.  It was for me & the whole world.  Shall I not love him and live only for Him?


Thoughts at Twilight   Leave a comment


Above:  The Gray Robe of Twilight (Between 1900 and 1912), by Charles Melville Dewey (1849-1937)

Publisher and Copyright Claimant = Detroit Publishing Company

Image Source = Library of Congress


Reproduction Number = LC-D416-29865


As twilight draws her dusky curtain

In silence o’er the earth;

As stars their twinkling rays and daw

With sparkling lights of mirth,

Mankind is drawn in restful silence.

To homes of peace and love,

Where thoughts of each are giv’n full-play

From soil–to heav’n above.

The children soon are all at rest

Content with joy and fun;

The working folk are happy, too,

I know their task’s well-done.

Others in the dusk of life,

Begin anew to think

Of what this life has been to them,

For now they’re at Death’s brink.

From East and West, from North to South,

As twilight falls around,

Man’s thoughts are ever turned to God

Who made the earth, silence, and sound.



The Transfiguration of Jesus   1 comment


Above:  Church of the Transfiguration, Mt. Tabor, Palestine, Between 1920 and 1933

Image Source = Library of Congress


Reproduction Number = LC-DIG-matpc-06264


Matt. 17, 1-8

1.  Place and conditions.  On the mountain at night while Jesus prays.  His divinity shines out till his garments look white as snow.  His humanity is perfected out of and by the divine.

2.  Moses and Elijah appear and talk with him.  Why these two?  Moses the lawgiver and Elijah the greatest of the prophets testify to his superiority of Moses & [his role as] the fulfiller of all prophecy.  Law and prophecy converge in and upon him.

3.  They talk of his death–of his exodus.  His death meets every demand of the law and fulfills every requirement and detail of prophecy, e.g., Jesus’ talk to the two en route to Emmaus.  Heaven’s interest in his death thus is shown by two messengers therefrom.  Three worlds are mightily concerned in his death.

4.  For the good of the disciples and all the world the Father speaks:  “This is my beloved Son…hear him.”

5.  Two teachings:

(1)  Immortality.  Moses & Elijah still live.  Our dead “in the Lord are not dead!

(2)  Chiefly is taught his divinity.  His glory, divine nature, bursts forth and the Father declares who he is.  Hear Him, all the earth.


Twilight   Leave a comment


Above:  Twilight on the Dunes, by Earl Howell Reed (1863-1931)

Image Source = Library of Congress


Reproduction Number = LC-USZ62-76602


At the close of ev’ry day

Comes a time of peace.

Husbands go to home and wife;

Troubles end; worries cease.

Children stop their fun and play,

Mothers sit and rest,

Birds and beasts go swiftly home

To lov’d ones in their nest.

Lovers seek a quiet place

To hold their trysting hour.

All are held in rapt’rous awe

By twilight’s gentle power.