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Dr. John Townsend: Causes of Depression

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The Day Our World Changed

November 13, 1989. 11:30 AM I had just finished my lunch in the teacher's workroom and was walking back to my classroom. I was teaching at San Jacinto Elementary in San Angelo, Texas at the time. Up until then, it had been a typical November day. As I walked past the school office, the door swung open, and a fellow teacher stepped out with a look of concern on her face. She spoke directly to me and said, “Your wife’s on the phone, and it sounds serious.” I ran into the office, took the phone, and heard my wife say, “I don’t know what happened, but your brother is on life support in a hospital in Austin.”  Twelve hours later, my father and I were sharing a room in a hotel on I-35 in Austin. My sister-in-law, Sandy, and her six-year-old daughter, Araceli, were in a room across the hall. I hardly slept that night. I would doze off and suddenly wake up to my father crying and calling out my brother’s name.  My brother was dead. Osiel had collapsed that morning while his high s

My Prayer for my Children

John grew up and became strong in spirit. -John 1:80 John the Baptist was an interesting man: a bit eccentric as evidenced by his appearance and his diet, and not afraid to tell the truth. Jesus referred to him as a truly great man. That he was. But one of the things that first gets my attention was that as a child, he became strong in spirit. Strong in spirit refers to being resolute and principled. It describes a person whose character is being molded and refined by learning to trust in God during life's difficulties. It speaks of someone who's not easily swayed by popular culture or opinion but who lives by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God. My children aren't children anymore but I still want them to become strong in spirit because I know they frequently face difficult and painful situations. In their trials, I want them to remember that being strong is spirit is only possible when our lives are deeply rooted in Christ and when we learn to live in the

Back from Nicaragua

I finally got back home last night after having to spend a few extra days in San Antonio after arriving from Nicaragua. I haven't had much time to rest, but I'm still very excited about my trip. While in Nicaragua, we spent much of our time in Esquipulas, where Missionary Nathan Alfaro is planting a church. In fact, he's actually planting two churches, Casa de Mi Gloria in Managua, and Casa de Mi Gloria-Esquipulas. The church plant in Esquipulas is being planted by way of a six-week (or perhaps longer) crusade. Services are being held every night of the week, except for Monday. The missionary-evangelist for this crusade is Dr. Doyle Jones . He is preaching every service of the crusade! I had a great time in Nicaragua. We've partnered with Missionaries Nathan and Christine Alfaro for many years, now, but after visiting Nicaragua, I understand why they love that country so much. I've learned to love them, too, after spending a week there. I especially enjoyed going ou