Hi, I’m Jim Watkins: author, speaker, and threat to society, offering more hope and humor than you can shake a memory stick at.

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Guest post by Eryn McMillan

Eryn knows the hurt that comes from the rejection of a man who is supposed to be her dad. She knows what it feels like to go to bed at night wondering, Did he even think about me today? and Will I ever be good enough for him?

But, rather than a lament about living without a dad, her post is a celebration of her Father.

Here’s her powerful blog post:

If you were to ask my dad what my favorite animal was, he would likely say a cat.

If you were to ask my dad what my favorite color was, he would likely take a random guess.

If you were to ask my dad what my favorite food is, he would likely say steak without a doubt.

If you were to ask my dad what I am studying, he would say “nursing.”

If you were to ask him why?, he would likely say “Because that’s what her mom does”

If you were to ask my dad where I like to spend my time, he would probably give you a generic answer.

If you were to ask my dad how I am doing, he would probably say, “living the dream.”

If you were to ask my dad what my hopes are for life, he would probably say, “to be a nurse.”

If you were to ask my dad about me, he would likely give you a false sense of relationship between the two of us.

If you were to ask my Father what my favorite animal is, He would tell you that I choose a new favorite animal far too often to have one true favorite animal!

If you were to ask my Father what my favorite color is, He would tell you that I cannot possibly choose one color because they are far too beautiful to choose just one!

If you were to ask my Father what my favorite food is, He would laugh and begin to list my favorite food for every meal along with my favorite snacks!

If you were to ask my Father what I am studying, He would tell you that she is studying far more than nursing. She is studying the art of loving people in a Christ-like way. And If you were to ask Him why, He would say, “because she knows what the absence of love feels like. She knows the hurt that comes from the rejection of a man who is supposed to be her dad. She knows what it feels like to go to bed at night wondering, Did he even think about me today? and Will I ever be good enough for him? She is studying the art of loving people in a way that leaves no room for doubt.”

If you were to ask my Father where I like to spend my time, He would say, “She doesn’t like to spend her time in just one place. She spends her time finding new place after new place. She is the girl that fills up her gas tank just to find new roads that take her to new places. The place she likes to spend time is everywhere.”

If you were to ask my Father how I am doing, He would tell you that I am in an ever-present state of growth. “She is a tree. Constantly trying to grow and spread her branches. Growing rooted in Truth that only comes from Me! If you were to ask Him how I am doing, He would say, “Blossoming.”

If you were to ask my Father what my hopes are for my life, He would tell you that my one true desire is to be seen as a “woman of Christ.” He would tell you that the one goal for my life is to spread Light on this earth.

If you were to ask my Father about me, He would say to you, “She is my daughter before she is anything on this earth. For I have known her longer than anyone, and I have known her deeper than anyone. I have felt every single glimpse of pain, sorrow, anger, guilt, and joy with her. I have been there in the fire with her since the beginning of time. I have wept with her and I have celebrated with her. I know her and I love her.

If you were to ask my Father about me, He would give you the most pure and intense definition of relationship.

Copyright © 2019 Eryn McMillan

Follow Eryn at Afternoon Thoughts

iGuatemala o busto!

October 14th, 2019 | Posted by jameswatkins in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)


Guatemala or bust! I’m getting packed to travel to God Bless the Children home in Guatemala City where I’ll serve as “Grandpa in Resident” for 20+ children. Looking forward to coloring, crafts and sharing some magic tricks. What fun! (I’ll be updating on Facebook and Instagram.)

And best of all, I’m going with a team that includes my daughter, Faith, and her 14- and 11-year-old daughters! We travel to Chicago Thursday the 17th, then fly out early Friday from “O’Hell International” to Dallas and then to Guatemala City. We fly back on Friday the 25th.

As you know, lack of structure and routine as well as being anxious in new situations with new people, plus OCD are issues for this extreme extrovert with clinical depression. I want to be an encouragement to the staff and show the kiddos that they are loved and valued. And to demonstrate that God’s power is revealed in our weakness to all and especially to my granddaughters.

¡Muchas gracias por tus oraciones! (Thanks so much for your prayers!)


While this month is designated Pastor Appreciation Month, every month should be filled with appreciation for the selfless and sacrificial service ministers provide every day of the year. (Having a day off from being a pastor is like having a day off from being pregnant!)

So, from someone who has spent forty-five years in ministry, here are Top ten ways to appreciate your pastor this month—and every month.

And if you’re a pastor, here’s whole a collection plate of hope and humor for you.

God, I don’t understand . . .

September 30th, 2019 | Posted by jameswatkins in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

God I don't understand
. . . unanswered prayer.
. . . unfulfilled promises.
. . . unpunished evil.

You’re not alone if you’re struggling! The psalmist, Asaph, (Psalms 50, 73-83) rejoiced at the glorious rise of Israel and the building of the magnificent Temple. But he also grieved as during the spiritual collapse and complete destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple. His writing is filled with raw, honest anguish as he struggled with unanswered prayer, unfulfilled promises, and unpunished evil.

Here’s what others are saying about God, I Don’t Understand (Previously titled The Psalms of Asaph)

      This book is for everyone who’s ever questioned God’s goodness, love, or faithfulness.
      With his trademark wit and wisdom, James Watkins addresses the hard questions, validates our pain, and offers a shoulder to cry on. This book shines a light on the blackest spaces of our lives and finds the hope that hides in the dark.
      Renae Brumbaugh Green, author of Morning Coffee with James.

      God, I Don’t Understand is an amazing book that takes a fresh and intimate approach to the great “un’s” of life. Through testimonies and biblical references, Watkins shows how to live in the light of God’s love—despite tragedies, our lack of understanding, and resulting anger. They don’t have to destroy our relationship with him.
      DiAnn Mills, best-selling suspense novelist

Browse
Excerpt: Why? Why? Why?
Table of Contents

Buy
• Amazon Paperback eBook [coming soon]

Study
Free individual or group study guide

A river cuts through rock . . .

September 24th, 2019 | Posted by jameswatkins in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

Wow! Now Michael Hyatt—marketing master—is quoting me! It’s all over the Web and has been licensed on coffee mugs for a large gift distributor. One woman even had it tattooed on her forearm. (You know you’ve made an impression on a reader when it’s in “ink.” )

Note: However, my original has an “its” between “of” and “power” for parallelism. Oh well, the thought is communicated.

It’s you found this meme helpful, please share in on your social networks. Thanks!


With the popularity of The Living Bible, The Message, and other paraphrases of the Bible, perhaps it’s time for this version featuring:

The New Living Amplified Paraphrased King James Watkins Version Copyright © James N. Watkins. All rights reserved.

If you enjoyed this post, please share in on your social networks. Thanks!

Too depressed to post?

September 16th, 2019 | Posted by jameswatkins in Uncategorized - (1 Comments)


11 am

I pride myself in having a new post every Monday morning. (It posts at 12 am for my friends to the east.)

This week I’ve been battling severe depression. It may be that a mega-church pastor committed suicide. I didn’t see grandkids last week. (We made up for it with a swim party yesterday!) I got a royalty check for $13.75. I was working on my small group, Intimacy with Christ: Beyond Information and Involvement, which launches tomorrow. (The enemy is not at all happy with it!) Saturday was particularly bad, but then at 6 pm I remembered I had taken my two meds for it.

That’s probably too much information, but I wanted to explain the delay and let you know if you’re having a rough Monday, you’re not alone. So, here are some of my favorite links in dealing with downtimes:

Are you listening to Goliath or God?
Feeling inadequate, ill-equipped, in the dark?
Fifty praises between bed and bathroom
Finding still waters in the storm: The Book of Joe
From bad to worse to . . . astonishing
“I’m a mess. You’re a mess.”
My life as a human tether ball
You may be depressed if . . .
More

Remembering 9/11

September 11th, 2019 | Posted by jameswatkins in Uncategorized - (1 Comments)


Two small numbers—9/11—have become shorthand for an infinite number of emotions: the shock and disbelief of watching the terrorist attack on live TV, the horror of watching the twin towers collapse upon themselves, the national grief as the number of confirmed casualties grew to over 2,800, the growing realization that we are no longer beyond the reach of terrorist attacks, and perhaps most of all, the fact that those who remember where they were on that date, will never, ever be the same.

Here are some of my thoughts posted within hours of the original attack and throughout the subsequent years. I trust they’re helpful in dealing with the shock, anger and grief of that day and continuing attacks.

Reacting
Dealing with death and grief
“bin Laden, kiss my pass!” (September 10, 2003)
Talking to your children about terrorism

Reasoning
Hope amid horror (September 11, 2006)
What motivates terrorists?
Taking the terror out of terrorism

Responding
Can war on terrorism be won? (September 11, 2005)
How can we overcome evil with good?
We are strong! We will survive! (September 17, 2001)
What we haven’t learned from 9/11 (September 9, 2002)
Candle-lighting ceremony following terrorist attacks (September 11, 2001)

Copyright © James N. Watkins
Photo: AOL.com

What are your thoughts on the anniversary of 9/11? Please leave a comment below.

Poop from Kathy Troyer

September 9th, 2019 | Posted by jameswatkins in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)


Guest post from one of my favorite people, Kathy Troyer

Have you noticed the poop emoji is everywhere?

One of my friends said the popular image is one of her top requested “embellishments” at her gymnastic events. You can buy pool floats (I might have bought one for a friend), pillows, sheets, backpacks, notebooks, clothing, Christmas decorations, cookies, dog toys, trophies, Squishies, squirt guns, puzzles, magnets, lollipops, stickers, candies, pens, jewelry, etc.

Seriously, isn’t there enough “poop” in our world already? Call me Debbie Downer but I don’t want any more poop in my world than what is produced naturally—and thank God we live in a country where it is easily flushed away.

So, why am I writing about poop today? Because sometimes life is poopie. [Continue reading]


As a young believer, one of my favorite verses was Philippians 4:13:

      For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.

I believed that through Christ, I would become a best-selling author, speak to stadium-sized crowds and overcome every obstacle in my way. Maybe you have used that verse to assure yourself that you would have a successful marriage, a winning athletic career, become a billionaire philanthropist, pastor a megachurch, overcome every temptation or [fill in the blank].

And maybe like me, you’ve found you are not doing “everything” you desired. Was Paul lying? And a more disturbing question: Is Christ powerless to do “everything”? [Continue reading]

Note
I deal with the questions of unfulfilled promises in God, I Don’t Understand.