As hobbies go, I am quite limited. I do not even play golf! I give much time to family concerns, though my wife Rose understandably would not entirely agree. I met Rose in Jamaica when serving there as a missionary instructor in the Jamaica Theological Seminary, then a small undergraduate school and sponsored by the missionary church, with which Ii am now an ordained minister. We were married in Jamaica in 1966. I cannot say enough to tell how much Rose (“Sweetie”) has meant to me as a faithful companion who has sacrificially given of herself to me and also to the two girls who came to live with us at ten and eleven years of age and whom we adopted. Over the year special times have been had with my twelve year old grandson, as he asks theological questions, such as “Papa, can we get to heaven in a space ship?” I enjoy working in the garden, but my time there is more limited more than either Rose or I would wish.
Long before I became a theologian I was a violinist! When almost five years of age a violin was put under my chin, and it has never been removed. During my boyhood and earlier adolescent years my goal in life was to be a professional musician. By the time I was twelve years of age I had given three public recitals, including violin concertos. After I had a life-changing encounter with the risen Lord at age 15, my plans gradually changed. Today playing the violin is an avocation. I tell people that I combine practice and performance (!) most Sunday mornings by playing the violin in the church orchestra at the First Baptist Church of Norfolk.
If it is not getting too close to academic matters, I enjoy reading journals and news magazines. I believe it very important to keep up with current events and ideas, as much as I can. At times I share results of my less academic reading with students. Actually, high times of my life are spent with students, in and out of the classroom.
I regularly begin the day with my Bible and a time of prayer, at times combining an approximate two mile walk with heavenly fellowship and intercessory prayer. I cannot say how much this has and does make a difference in my perspective on life. Times of prayer with Rose, though not as much as I would like, are nevertheless highly treasured.
The associations which Rose and I have at the First Baptist Church of Norfolk are important to us. I lead an adult Bible class there, which includes monthly prayer and share meetings and class socials periodically. I find that preparing Bible studies for the class expands my understanding of the Scriptures and ways of relating biblical truths to life. Of course on the other hand, being involved with Bible study in Regent’s School of Divinity provides me with content to share with my church class, though I need to repackage it at times.
I seek share Christ with others whom I meet in various stations in life. I probably should be more aggressive than I am to share my faith. But I frequently share a copy of the “Four Spiritual Laws,” following an initial conversation.
I am growing in the grace of God. I am more impressed than ever with the wonder of God’s glory, love, sovereignty, and presence. Surely the mystery of His providential ways will never be fathomed by humankind. I am grateful beyond words for His grace in my life. What more can we do than cry “Holy, Holy, Holy” as we are caught up with love and wonder in His Presence.