Lost and Found

Lost and Found

My first car was an old clunker. It was a light blue Chrysler and I’m not sure of the year (late 1950’s or early 1960’s) but it was definitely old. It had what I would describe as “wings” on each side at the rear of the car, and a convenient hole in the driver’s side floorboard where I could empty my soft drinks and coffee. Ha!

Strangely, it had an automatic transmission but no “P” for park; I had to put it in “N” for neutral and pull the parking brake. This would have been fine, except for the fact that the parking brake was broke. So, I had to open my door and throw a wood block under the front tire to chalk it in place. The real problem came when I’d miss the tire and have to hurry out of the car, get the block from wherever it landed, and wedge it under the tire before the car rolled too far. Good times! Ha!

Hey, I was 16 years old, it was 1970, and I was happy just to have my own car, even though it was a clunker.

It basically got me from point A to point B, and it had an AM radio, which was always tuned-in to either pop or rock music. 🎶

June 1971, in my light blue Chrysler.

The problem was my sense of direction; it wasn’t very good. I was always getting lost. I remember crying on more than one occasion because I was lost. This was the point when I first began thinking how cool it would be if my radio could please just tell me where I was, and how to get to where I was going. I was on the edge of brilliance (😂) but somehow fell short of inventing GPS navigation.


In 1972, I got a major upgrade; a brand new 1972 Camaro Rally Sport in Mojave Gold, complete with rear spoiler, an AM/FM stereo radio 🎶 (woo-hoo!), an 8-Track Tape player, lots of pop and rock 8-Track Tapes, and I graduated from high school, all in that order.

Me and my Camaro, May 1972. (My dad gave me $1000 for the down payment, and I worked full-time my senior year of high school, paid my monthly payments weekly and got it paid it off within a year.)

Fast forward to today, I drive a 2019 Jeep Grande Cherokee. It has a beautiful Pearl Red exterior color, and my favorite interior feature: Car Play with access to my iPhone apps, media, contacts, maps, and more.

October 2017, at the Texas State Fair in the Car Pavilion. I told Harold I loved the color of this 2018 Jeep. He surprised me a little over a year later at Christmas time with a brand new Pearl Red 2019 Jeep Grande Cherokee!

Lots of changes.

Much for the good.


Of all of these changes over the past 50 years I’d have to say that the greatest change has not been in my cars,

but in my heart,

and in that which I choose to feed it.

The change in my heart came in the mid 1980’s when I repented of my sins and surrendered my heart to Jesus. The choice of what to feed it followed in the days after, up to and including today.

“Make me to know your ways, O LORD; teach me your paths.” Psalm 25:4

So these days,

My favorite thing to listen to while driving is Christian talk radio. My favorite station is AFR, a Christian Talk Radio Station based in Tupelo, MS. That station, combined with my favorite iPhone apps, Truth for Life with Alistair Begg, One Passion with Steven Lawson, and Grace to You with John MacArthur; and some of my favorite Christian Podcasters, like Allie Beth Stuckey of Relatable, and Jan Markle of Understanding the Times, have been a godsend in my life. There are many more great pastors, teachers, and Christian leaders I like to listen to, but way too many to mention them all. Suffice it to say that I’m thankful 🙌🏻 for each one of them. They, along with Bible study and prayer, help me keep more “in tune” with God and less “in tune” with the world.

“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you.” Psalm 32:8

So, how cool is it, that my getting lost when I first started driving, and my desperate hope that the radio would tell me where I was and how to get to where I needed to go, has actually come true in my life,


in more ways than one:

Thanks to my Car Play maps and navigation system, I no longer get lost.

Thanks to Christian Talk Radio and my favorite iPhone apps that guide me in my walk with the Lord.

Cooler still,

Thanks to the Lord,

“I once was lost, but now am found;
Was blind, but now I see.” #JohnNewton

By the grace of God,

I know who I am, (a sinner saved by grace).

Where I am, (in Christ Jesus)


Where I’m going. (In the world but not of the world; on my way to heaven one day in God’s perfect timing.)

“Pray that the LORD your God will tell us where we should go and what we should do.” Jeremiah 42:3

And enjoy the ride along the way.

The Sun ☀️

The Sun ☀️

The sun is amazing. It provides light, warmth, energy, and natural vitamin D to support our immune system. All of which are provisions that God has graciously made for us to enjoy and to benefit from. In actuality, without the sun, life as we know it, would cease to exist.

I remember when I was in my early teens back in Indiana, one of my best friends had the prettiest golden tan. I figured I could have a tan just like her if I just laid out in the sun like she did. Right? One day after we had just spent the afternoon in my backyard laying out in the sun together, and as I was just beginning to think I was getting some color, her mom came to pick her up and said to me, “Elaine, you need to get out in the sun more.” 😳

Later that summer, on a Florida family vacation, I stayed out on the beach all day the first day, walking up and down the Daytona Beach coastline. My thought was, I’d surely get a good tan if I did that, right? Wrong! 🤕 I was practically burnt to a crisp, from head to toe. I spent the entire rest of our family vacation sick in bed with sun poisoning. It was the absolute worst sunburn of my entire life. I remember I was so sick to my stomach, I was dizzy for days, and I fainted whenever I tried to stand up. It was awful!

It’s safe to say that I learned early on that too much of a good thing, or something used in the wrong way can and does have consequences. I also realized that I’m fair complected and that fair skin just doesn’t tan as well as other skin types.

So I’ve pretty much avoided overexposure to the sun in one way or another ever since. At first it was mostly seeking some shade whenever outside, and giving up laying out in the sun, but it wasn’t until I was in my 30’s that I started thinking about sun damage and started wearing sunscreen daily. In my 40’s I experienced the first of several Basel cell skin cancers that have emerged over the past 25 years or so. In my 50’s I did find some skin care products that lightened some of the brown spots on my face, and I also increased my sunscreen SPF to 50. Now at age 67, and at the suggestion of my dermatologist, I’ve starting wearing a sun 👒 bonnet as well.

May 2022

Hat or no hat, the long term effects of sun exposure, especially the years of not wearing sun screen when I was young, has taken its toll on my skin. Regardless, I still enjoy the outdoors as much as possible and am thankful for all of God’s provisions, including the sun. I say all of this to make a point of something disturbing that was recently brought to my attention and is actually my main purpose of this writing.

There’s a false theology involving the sun that started many years ago however still exists today, called Astrotheology. It’s best described as the combination of astrolatry (worship of the sun, moon, and stars) and Christianity.

I find it both disturbing and incredible that there are so many false religions and false teachers in the world today. What is it about false religions and false teachers that draws people in? Why believe a lie instead of the truth?

They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen. Romans 1:25

Anyway, to explain Astrotheology in more detail, the following includes excerpts from one of my favorite websites, Got Questions:

Astrotheology attempts to twist Scripture so that Jesus Christ, instead of being God’s SON, is actually God’s SUN. Astrotheology ties the gospel to ancient god myths and mystery religions.

True theology looks up at the stars, moon, and sun; sees proof of God’s glory; and worships Him for what He has made.

The heavens declare the glory of God,and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. Psalm 19:1

True theology does not worship the creation (which astrolatry does), and it does not view the creation as a symbol of God (which astrotheology does).

The false concept behind Astrotheology is that the story of Jesus Christ is the story of man’s relationship with the sun and the seasons. Early man was afraid of darkness and realized his dependence on the sun, waiting for the sun to come again day after day. Darkness became a symbol of evil (the devil), and God, who gave us the sun for light and warmth and growing food, was good. Eventually, says astrotheology, these ideas were expressed in the Bible as the story of Jesus Christ.

Astrotheology falsely teaches that Bible verses that say Jesus is the light of the world (e.g., John 8:12) are really referring to the physical sun. Additionally they purport that the twelve months of the year are represented by Christ’s twelve apostles, and the four Gospels represent the four seasons.

Additionally, Astrotheology falsely teaches that the mythologies of ancient gods such as Osiris, Horus, Adonis, and Mithras were based on seasonal cycles, and that the story of Jesus Christ is just a retelling of those ancient tales. Several books and two recent films, The God Who Wasn’t There and Zeitgeist, are making these claims popular.

The problem with such claims is twofold: 1) astrotheology and similar beliefs dismiss the evidence for the historical Jesus Christ, and 2) the so-called parallels between the Gospels and the mythical religions are invalid, as honest research will show. The claims made by the historical Jesus are unique and do not match the stories of the pagan gods.

Any attempt to allegorize the Word of God, pervert its plain sense, or deny Jesus Christ is abominable. The Bible warns us against “ignorant and unstable people” who distort Scripture “to their own destruction. . . .

Therefore, dear friends, since you have been forewarned, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of the lawless and fall from your secure position” (2 Peter 3:16–17).

Don’t be led astray.

Instead of being led astray by the claims of astrotheology, we should “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Instead, grow in the grace of God.

But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen. 2 Peter 3:16-17



Here’s a picture of me and my 5th grade Sunday School class sometime around 1965 at Southport Methodist Church in Southport, Indiana. This was the church our family went to while I was growing up in central Indiana. It was during this time period that I hold some of my fondest memories at this church, and it was here that I first came to faith in Christ around age 12.

Around 3 years after this picture was taken, the church changed their name to include “United.” I continued my membership there into my young adult years, with increasing periods of inactivity on and off during my late teens and early 20’s, and then a resurgence in the early 1980’s. God got my attention one night after listening to Billy Graham speak on TV. I woke up in the middle of the night thinking about all the sin in my life and cried out to Him in repentance and faith. I began reading my Bible and started going back to my old church.

I enjoyed being back in the church I grew up in, especially the people, but a couple of things started bothering me. My Sunday School class studied books that seemed more philosophical than biblical, and many of the pastor’s sermons were light on Bible verses and heavy on modern day stories. Around this same time, I was listening to a Baptist preacher out of Atlanta on the radio, Charles Stanley. His sermons were jam packed with Bible verses and Bible stories. This style of preaching was new to me and I found myself very drawn to it. While I really enjoyed my old church and probably would have stayed there a long time, God had different plans for me.

In 1988 I broke tradition in our family and became a Baptist, by full water immersion at age 33, at Providence Baptist Church in Riverview, Florida. It was a series of events that lead up to my change in church membership and in my relationship with God. I wrote about this experience in a previous blog, Another Gospel. In short, God wanted me to grow closer in my relationship with Him.

So now, some 32 years later, my favorite teacher is Jesus, and my favorite book is the Bible. I’m still a Baptist although I do lean more toward Reformed Theology now, which makes me more of a Reformed Baptist I guess. I very much respect the hero’s of the reformation such as Martin Luther and John Calvin. While I’m not quite a 5-point Calvinist, I do particularly like the writings of the puritans, such as John Bunyan and Jonathan Edwards. I also like Charles Spurgeon. While I don’t agree 100% with his views, I believe most of his writings are 100% spot on. For example, I don’t agree with his position that baptism is essential to salvation, but I do agree with his viewpoint that Baptismal Regeneration, the practice of baptizing unbelievers and infants, is not biblical and does not save. I also find Charles Spurgeon’s background fascinating. He was born into a family of Congregationalists, saved in a Methodist Church, became the greatest Baptist preacher in history, and also the most well know Calvinist of the Victorian era.

At the same time, I still like Arminian preachers such as John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist Church, Charles Stanley from First Baptist in Atlanta, Greg Laurie from Riverside California, and of course, the late Billy Graham, who is probably the most well known evangelist of the 20th century. I believe God uses both Arminians and Calvinists to preach the gospel message and to teach us about the Bible. I like this quote from Arminian pastor Leonard Ravenhill, “Think like a Calvinist, live like an Arminian.”

I find debates between Arminianism and Calvinism interesting to a point, but it bothers me when soteriology becomes more of an argument between believers than the mission God intended it to be. Those who find themselves in frequent debates on this subject would make better use of their time by instead sharing the gospel with a lost and dying world, as Jesus commanded in the Great Commission. Our job is telling. God’s job is saving.

If I were pushed to choose a side in the Arminian-Calvinism debate, I would choose Calvinism. I believe God is Sovereign and ultimately in control of everything, whether we think so or not, including, and not limited to, free will. Regardless, our salvation is based upon Jesus’ finished work on the cross and our coming to Him in repentance and in faith, believing that Jesus is who He says he is.

I like the response that Charles Spurgeon once gave to someone who asked him about his theology. Though he preferred to think of himself as a “mere Christian” he also said “I am never ashamed to avow myself a Calvinist,” and “I do not hesitate to take the name of Baptist, but if I am asked what is my creed, I reply, ‘It is Jesus Christ.’”