Author Archives: jameswatkins

About jameswatkins

Author and speaker

Ten years cancer-free!

October 8th, 2018 | Posted by jameswatkins in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

On Wednesday, October 10, 2018, I will celebrate ten years cancer-free!

I am so grateful to have had ten years to write eight books, speak at over 50 conferences, celebrate ten Christmas and Easter holidays, enjoy ten wedding anniversaries (including the big 4-0), and best of all to hang out with one wife, two adult kids and eight grandchildren. (I hope to have a few more decades in me.)

I thank God, medical technology (a high-tech, computer-driven precision radiation treatment), the wonderful staff at Progressive Cancer Care and your faithful prayers.

I feel like I’ve been given a gift and an opportunity to keep sharing hope and humor—and I don’t want to squander it!

So, here are the Top ten things I learned from cancer.


The Un-tied States of America

October 3rd, 2018 | Posted by jameswatkins in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

October 2018

A new study by Michigan State University notes: Far From United: Political Divide In America The Worst It’s Ever Been. Researcher and author, Zachary Neal, writes:

What I’ve found is that polarization has been steadily getting worse since the early 1970s. Today, we’ve hit the ceiling on polarization. At these levels, it will be difficult to make any progress on social or economic policies.

This polarization is on display with the brutal Brett Kavanaugh hearings for his nomination to the Supreme Court, the bitter midterm election campaigns as well as racial, ethnic and moral conflicts.

Here’s what I wrote for an online magazine in January 2017 following the bitter 2016 election. [Continue reading]


October is Pastor Appreciation Month

October 1st, 2018 | Posted by jameswatkins in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

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 a pregnancy!)

So, from someone who has spent forty years in ministry, here are Top ten ways to appreciate your pastor this month—and every month: [Continue reading]

I’m also designating this month as “Unplugged October.” After a long, hard summer physically and emotionally, I’m taking 31 days off from writing and social media.

However, never fear! I have posts automatically scheduled to appear each Monday dealing with Halloween, my tenth anniversary of being cancer-free, political division, living a life of laughter and some thoughts on the Reformation and restoration.

Plus, there are over 300 posts right here. That’s ten a day, so you can have your fill of hope and humor!


Mini miracles

September 24th, 2018 | Posted by jameswatkins in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

You would expect the Son of God to begin with a more spectacular miracle: raising a corpse from the dead, healing a leper, multiplying loaves and fishes, casting out an evil spirit, calming a raging storm or at least walking on the sea. After all, this is the same God who brought us Mount Sinai, the Red Sea, and the walls of Jericho.

But Jesus chooses to launch his ministry of miracles by saving a party! More guests have shown up at the wedding reception than sent in their RSVP cards, and now the punch bowl is dry. So Jesus turns water into wine! [Continue reading]


How to move a mountain

September 17th, 2018 | Posted by jameswatkins in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

I love the story of the man who prayed for God to miraculously remove the huge pile of dirt from behind his new home. He claimed Matthew 17:20’s promise: “Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”

All night, he fervently prayed, but when he awoke, there—still—was the huge pile of dirt. But in front of it, something new . . .

Continue reading
Listen to podcast


Are natural disasters ‘acts of God’?

September 12th, 2018 | Posted by jameswatkins in Uncategorized - (2 Comments)

My thoughts and prayers are with all of those in the path of Florence, a Category 4 hurricane with sustained winds of 130 miles per hour swirling off the Atlantic coastline.

Insurance companies describe these disasters as “acts of God,” but how much responsibility for hurricanes, earthquakes, floods, wildfires, blizzards, typhoons and tornadoes can be laid at the foot of his throne?

Here’s what I know:

Natural disasters were never a part of God’s original plan of Creation

The Fall, as well as the Flood, caused destructive consequences to creation. Before the Fall, there were apparently no weeds, no carnivores, pain in childbirth, decay or even death (Genesis 3). [Continue reading]


Remembering 9/11

September 11th, 2018 | 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.

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

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

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

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


God is such a ‘drama king’

September 10th, 2018 | Posted by jameswatkins in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

In an action/adventure film, the hero never defuses the bomb with one hour to spare. Not even one minute. It’s always less than one second! (And, of course, the agonizing decision as to whether to cut the red or blue wire.)

That’s just good script writing. Ratchet up the conflict to the breaking point, then resolve the imminent, inevitable disaster with just a split second remaining. Or, in the case of Speed, resolve the conflict (hero, heroine and passengers are safely off the bomb-laden bus) and then throw in an entirely new conflict (heroine is now strapped into a bomb-laden vest)!

Does that sound like your life? That’s because God, the “author and finisher of our faith,” is the ultimate scriptwriter! [Continue reading]


Do you have the worst job?

September 2nd, 2018 | Posted by jameswatkins in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

Happy Labor Day! Here in the States, we’re celebrating labor by taking the day off!

However, not everyone loves his or her job, so I have in my right hand, direct from, today’s category: Ten top worst jobs in America. The company took a look at 200 jobs and ranked them based on a variety of criteria, including “income, outlook, environmental factors, stress and physical demands.” (Of course, my first question was “Am I on the list?” And second, “Where does “survey-taker” rank on the list?”)

[Continue reading]


Happy 8/28!

August 26th, 2018 | Posted by jameswatkins in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

I love the date of August 28, since 8/28 reminds me of Romans 8:28! (It’s just how my little mind works!)

      And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.

Unfortunately, we leave off the verse that tells us our “purpose.”

      For God knew his people in advance, and he chose them to become like his Son. . .

So, on this special day, here are some of my favorite posts on one of my favorite verses:

Christ’s career path: obscurity, popularity, animosity
Coincidences or “God-incidences”?
Did duct-taped recliner save our lives?!
God has a plan for new year
Has your brook dried up?
The Imitation of Christ: Classic Devotions in Today’s Language
Squeezing Good Out of Bad: My book on Romans 8:28
Top ten things I’ve learned from cancer
Why? Some thoughts on life’s tough questions

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