Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Ed Approaches the Finish Line

It’s Wednesday night, 26 September 2012, and it has been a day.

I recently returned from Tri-State Calvary Chapel this evening. There I heard a great deal about their Senior Pastor Ed Gaines.

I had met Ed before, but only two or three times for two to three hours at a time at Calvary Chapel of Dayton. The meetings took place during a Monday mid-morning gathering of South-Western & Central Ohio Calvary Chapel pastors that lasted through lunch.

When Ed was there he always appeared physically frail. We would find out how he was doing physically only after he was pestered to give an update. You see he suffered from kidney failure and had lost one, and the remaining kidney was only partially functionally. He was regularly on dialysis to survive. He had also fought off cancer.

Now after Ed would give an update on his condition he always made it a point to go around the circle of pastors and ask how they were doing – physically, spiritually, family, and as pastors. And he would always find a way to encourage and be positive.

That was the glimpse of Ed I had been provided.

Tonight at his church – when Ed was not there – I got a much better look.

Ed is the hospital and he is dying. He went in to have some more cancer removed. When he was opened up what the doctors saw resulted in opening him further up. What they found was more cancer, inoperable cancer.

Ed made a decision after he was closed up and regained consciousness. The decision, “No more dialysis.” He put it all in God’s hands. Then Ed started to run to the finish line. When he would hear about a doctor, a nurse, a helper, a patient, anyone on staff or in the hospital did not know Christ, he wanted to witness to them.

That created an incredible picture in my mind. Imagine this reality if you will. You meet up with a man whom you know is on the hospital’s death row and he wants to talk to you about your eternal salvation. Clearly Ed, no matter his circumstance is going to finish strong.

If you want to know more about this man of God, check out his message on James 1 and learn how his kidney disease was from God to be part of his ministry and trials on the bottom of the page here.

If you find yourself taken with this man’s teaching and preaching as I am, you will find a number of his messages here.

Ed, I don’t know how long you will be with us, but I am grateful for the witness of your life.

Postscript: I had the pleasure of riding with my pastor, Dave Elkins, of Calvary Chapel of Dayton who shared stories of his 21 years of relationship with Pastor Ed that only increased my admiration of this man who is finishing the race strong.

Thanks Ed.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Value of a Typographical Error

I was studying GM Yuri Averbakh’s “Chess Tactics for Advanced Players” (1st printing paperback edition by Chess Digest 1992) Part 1: The double attack, subsection on The Mutual Tw- Fold Attack described as “This extremely tense situation in which two pieces on each side attack two hostile pieces deserves special consideration” (p50).

Working my way through the diagrams I came to the diagram below (p53) between GM George Thomas vs GM Max Euwe, 1936, Nottingham England where after 22 moves Thomas has built up a crushing attack against Euwe’s Bishop sitting on d6 triple attacked. Ouch!

Black to play

Euwe played 22. … Ne6 where GM Averbakh stated, “apparently assuming that after 23. Rxd6, Rxd6 24. Qxd6 Rd8 a mutual two-fold is created from which he extricates himself with 25. Qxc7 Rxd1+ with an advantage in material [after 26. Kf2 Nxc7].”

I have to admit I first played through this a few times in my head and then on the board and thought Euwe had found a great recovery in a very bad situation.

Then I read further.

GM Averbakh went on to say, “But White [could have] found a different way of defending himself and of protecting his position against harassment by the rook [move to d8].

The attempt to recover the piece by means of a pin after 26. … Qxd6, 27. Rxd6 Nf8 [would be] frustrated by by the discovered check 28. Nf6+” (p53) with no further comments.

Of course the variation given does not make sense because a move is missing, White’s new / different move 25.? What was it? No errata sheet was found online for the book so I went looking elsewhere.

On I found the entire game. Turns out it was an Alekhine Defense: Modern Variation. Main Line (B05). It was there in the notes below in the “Kibitzer’s Corner” I found the missing move.

There a reader (AdrainP) had noted, “The most interesting thing is that White believed Black, that the piece could not be taken, and replied 23 g3." ('Chess Middlegames: Essential Knowledge' Averbakh).” Clearly Averbakh thought this position was worth using in more than one book. I have to agree.

From AdrainP we learn, Max Euwe “… in his preliminary calculations, overlooked that White can reply 25. Nd7! and after 25. ...Qxd6 26. Rxd6 the move 26. ...Nf8 is refuted by 27. Nf6+.”

So let’s see a new diagram just prior to 25. Nd7!

White to play

Here White can play the winning 25. Nd7!! An incredible interference move which renders Black’s 24. … Rd8 useless and White is a piece ahead.

Of course Black can try the variation given, 25. Nd7 Qxd6 26.Rxe6 Nf8 with a double attack against the Knight of d7.

But the double attack on d7 avails Black nothing as it is followed by 27.Nf6+ and the win of the Rook on d8 and the game would have been over.

However as noted above, White played 23.g3 after Black’s 22…. Ne6 and the game went on another 14 moves.

GM Thomas resigned after making move 37. At first a few of us (thought it might have been time trouble that caused White’s loss. That was not it, not at all.

Black to play

It took us minutes to find what GM Thomas likely saw in single digit seconds after playing 37. Qe3 and did not wait to find out if GM Euwe saw the same. After White’s move 37 we are treated to the position on the left.

In this position we (by this time I had engaged a number of Dayton Chess Club members in my searth for truth) enjoyed finding the following variations.

37. … Qf1+ 38. Kh4 g5+ 39. Fxg5 fxg5+ 40.Kxh5 Qh3+ 41.Kg6 Qh7++

Or 37. … Qf1+ 38. Rg7 Qd1! Threatening mate on g4 and a double attack on W(ite’s Bishop on d4. So it’s either mate or the loss of a piece.

Moral of the story: typographical errors can lead to greater knowledge if you are willing to follow up on them.

By the way – I highly recommend GM Averbakh’s “Chess Tactics for Advanced Players” and it is available on


Friday, September 14, 2012

Who Is In Charge

Judge Napolitano is worried about what if nothing changes in November no matter who gets elected.

While I have some sympathy and agreement with the Judge, my position is very much different.

My position is whoever is elected this November, whatever the policies they pursue are, it matters not for God remains in Charge.

Also, whether it is team a (rep or dem) or team b (rep or dem) we are still going to go over an economic cliff. One or the other may or may not be able to slow the approach to the cliff (something I favor), but we are going to go over this cliff.

Knowing this I vote my faith and against those values I find most abhorrent and for those values I most favor when I consider the future of my grandchildren.

Above all else I am a Christian, a family man next, and so grateful to live in a country that still lets me practice my faith.


Bottom line: I am a Christian and vote my Christian values. That makes me an independent, conservative, libertarian, free-market individual who votes his faith. And I remain confident God is in Charge.

Thugs, Murderous Thugs

Why would a mob of Muslims kill a U.S. ambassador and three others over a movie trailer you can be sure none of them saw?

One thing you can be sure of, it is not because of their mature worldly outlook. Instead they have the mindset of children, murderous children which makes them thugs.

How do such people become thugs and murderers? The question needs to be answered when you consider a subset of Islam that teaches and preaches murder for any offense deemed worthy of death by some Inman.

It is as if some version of the Lord of the Flies has been written for adults with primitive tribal values based upon hate in the modern world.

As a result you have mainstream writers and news people inveighing against freedom of speech and freedom of the press rather than demanding those who murder for no real reason at all be punished and punished to the full extent of the law.

Most Muslims are grown up in their approach to life and know how to handle disappointment and make rational decisions when things do not go their way – just as most Christians do. In a post Christian USA, Christians have learned to deal with it when a changing culture, movies, and art denigrate their faith.

However Muslims are - so far – unwilling to stand up en masse to protest and stop what is happening within their faith, a faith ruled by thugs. These thugs will stop at nothing to get their way. Mob murder is only one of their tools, honor killings is another.

No film maker or writer incited Muslims to commit murder. Instead the incitement came from within Islam as it always has. Any Inman who incites these mob murders needs to be tried for murder and then his organization sued for any and all possessions by the survivors of those who were murdered until they are put completely and totally out of business.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Right Now!

Fiction - by Riley D. Driver

Right from the start I want to state my complete and total agreement with

- The Honorable Mr. Thomas Menino, Mayor of Boston, Massachusetts who wants to ban Chick-fil-A from Boston
- The Honorable Mr. Rahm Emanuel, Mayor of Chicago, Illinois, who stated clearly, “Chick-fil-A’s values are not Chicago values”
- The Honorable Ms. Christine Quinn, NYC Council Speaker who wants Chick-fil-A to leave New York University’s campus
- The Honorable Mr. Jim Kenney, Philadelphia City Councilman who introduced a resolution condemning the Chick-fil-A company and its president

They and others in various states and cities are correct in opposing such an intolerant company as Chick-fil-A and its leadership for seriously holding onto ancient invalid intolerant Christian values that would condemn various behaviors as sinful.

How awful. How ugly. How hurtful.

Let’s be clear, anyone holding such awful, ugly, hurtful beliefs should be unable to own a business, much less open them in our open tolerant beautiful accepting of all life styles cities.

How dare they?

I really do not understand why they are permitted to own businesses when they can take their profits and use those profits to support their awful, ugly, and hurtful beliefs. This must be stopped. I know it can’t be done immediately, but a way must be found to stop this as soon as possible.

Nor do I want to hear anything about how we have to be or should be accepting and tolerant of such awful, ugly, hurtful Christian beliefs. Tolerance should never be extended to those who oppose an open society that is accepting and loving towards any and all lifestyles. Never. Never. Never.

We need to really start a full-fledged campaign to make everyone aware that these so-called loving Christians with their awful, ugly, hurtful Christian beliefs are not worthy of the rights and freedoms the rest of us enjoy when we fully accept and love those in any and all lifestyles that are not stained with such an ugly belief or faith. They are not the same as us, they are not worthy of the freedoms we enjoy, they must be flushed out and identified wherever they are and then they must be denied any position of trust and authority.

They, those bible believing Christians, are simply not like us, not at all like us. They are intolerant of the lifestyles we accept as an accepting and loving society. We must rid ourselves of these bible believing Christians – they are like vermin spreading a disease of awful, ugly, hurtful beliefs among us. This disease of intolerance cannot be permitted to continue.

We must not be swayed by their double talk of loving the sinner, but hating the sin. That is simply a fancy way of covering up the how unaccepting and unloving they are of our cherished lifestyles that they say their god condemns. How can they be truly-loving, if they spread such awful, ugly, hurtful beliefs?

They must be stopped. They must be identified. They must be separated from us. This must be done to protect our tolerant, accepting, and loving culture of any and all lifestyles.

To the same end, they must not be permitted to raise young beautiful children to have to such awful, ugly, and hurtful beliefs. The children must be removed from them to avoid the spread of these horribly intolerant beliefs to their young. Instead their children must be taught how wonderful and loving it is to accept all beliefs in our open and loving worldwide culture of tolerance.

This must be done soon, as soon as possible.


Friday, July 27, 2012

Olympic Hypocrisy Writ Large

Greece’s Olympic triple-jumper Voula Papachristou may be a racist or she may simply have very poor taste when it comes to humor. She posted a “joke” about African immigrants in Greece and West Nile virus mosquitoes on Twitter. Along with the joke Voula posted support for what passes for a far-right political party in Greece.

For the above she was expelled from Greece’s Olympic team. I am not kidding, it’s true. A woman who had earned a spot on an Olympic team was expelled for ‘saying something’ on a Twitter. It made no difference that she followed up with a tweet: "I am very sorry and ashamed for the negative responses I triggered, since I never wanted to offend anyone, or to encroach human rights.”

No one is speaking out in her defense. Maybe no one should.

However, if Voula Papachristou deserves to be removed from Greece’s Olympic team for her tweeted remarks what should be done about the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, aka North Korea? After all their citizens are malnourished/starved to the point there is a height difference of two (2) to three (3) inches between North and South Korea citizens.

Then what about Saudia Arabia and other countries which deny any real rights to women and have homosexuals put to death or in the case of Iran given the choice between death and a transsexual operation?

That’s right, these countries that commit gross violations of basic human rights and they are all permitted to compete in the Olympics.

Voula Papachristou, she is not permitted because of something she tweeted.

This is hypocrisy writ large.

Voula Papachristou should be reinstated immediately.


Saturday, March 31, 2012

the viewing

It wss 3:15 a.m. Saturday morning and I was wide awake in Chipley, Florida.

Didn't know why I was awake, so I asked my Lord, “Why am I awake?” I didn’t really expect an answer and thought I would soon be returning to bed. Instead, I was told to “Write.”

So I am writing about the one thing on my heart right now – the viewing service of Georgeanna Victoria Shores held last night in Marianna, FL about 20 miles away.

This viewing was the first one I have ever attended where no one cried. Not one person. Instead it was a celebration of 1) the life of Georgeanna Victoria Shores and 2) her relationship with her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. While these two things are listed separately, they are deeply intertwined.

You may read GA’s (that’s how I knew her, as GA or Georgeanna) obituary here or here.

In her obituaries you will find out she was only 66 years 7 months and 19 days old when she died. She spent 45 years of her life with my friend Lenny Shores – more on that later.

What you won’t find in the obituaries is that as she approached death, she wished she had been less of a Martha – see Luke 10: 38-42 here - and instead had spent more time in building her relationship with Jesus Christ. That was the message at the viewing last night for all of us in attendance and for those we will touch in the future.

What GA did not know, was that the testimonies given last night about her life demonstrated her relationship with Christ. GA loved sacrificially as Jesus did.

She brought His example into the lives of all her loved ones and also into those she did not know at all. She and Lenny had three sons and one of them spoke last night on how during the many moves they made as a Navy family and as a missionary family, never once did she complain about Lenny’s many deployments at sea for six, nine, or twelve months. Not once.

I met GA’s husband Lenny at Al Asad AB, Iraq in early 2008 – February or March. One day a few weeks after meeting Lenny, he was talking with GA on the phone and he called me over to the phone and said with an odd look on his face, “Georgeanna wants to talk with you.” I replied, “Are you sure?” He went back to the phone and asked, then handed the phone to me saying “Yes.”

After confirming who I was she made the statement, “You are the man I have been praying Lenny would meet in Iraq.” How could that be, I wondered and asked. She replied, “I – and my church – have been praying Lenny would meet a Godly man in Iraq, a man who loves the Lord Jesus Christ.”

Suddenly I understood. Lenny and I had had already had a number of theological discussions with many disagreements (what do you expect when you put a Pentecostal and a Southern Baptist together), but one central area of agreement – Jesus Christ was his and my Lord and Savior.

I did not consider myself then or now a Godly man, but instead a struggling sinner who knew (knows) Jesus as my personal Lord and Savior. Finding a real (serious) Christian brother (or sister) in Iraq was not an easy task other than the Navy Chaplin there. Then I met Lenny and he was the Godly man put into my life ... via GA's prayers.

But I digress. You see it was GA’s love for Christ and her love for her husband and her concern about his walk with Christ that led her to pray that he would find a Christian brother who would be a friend while in Iraq. Because of GA’s love for Christ and her forthright prayers, Lenny and I became friends. We remain friends, loyal friends, to this day.

During GA’s last visit to her church she was no longer able to walk and arrived in a wheelchair. I don’t know if this was her “Last Good Day” – something you may read about here, but something unusual and special happened a little later in the service.

Georgeanna got out of wheelchair and did not simply stand, but danced with the joy of knowing Jesus and asked the pastor for permission to address the congregation.

Her address was one of of the need to love and love deeply and her hope that all would come to know Jesus and join her in heaven with Him. Left me to wonder what I will be doing and saying on my Last Good Day.

She selected a number of songs to bring her love for Jesus to the forefront for everyone at her viewing – a viewing where I observed no one filing past her casket.

The songs were
Open the Eyes of My Heart Lord
I Sing Praises to Your Name
Lord Be Glorified
Change My Heart Oh God
Amazing Grace
What a Friend We Have in Jesus

However, she had also asked that all of her grandchildren and family would sing a special song to her and for her that she and everyone used to sing at Christmas to Lenny’s mother.

This song, “Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer,” reflects the very real joy she experienced in this life in her faith walk. A joy that only hints at the joy she is now experiencing in eternity with Christ - a joy shes wants for everyone.

I will think often on how GA lived her life and the many testimonies of her children, mother-in-law, grandchildren, and others. And one day I expect to meet her again in Heaven.

It's now almost 6:00 a.m. in Chipley, Florida and I intend to grab another hour of sleep. Have a Good day.