Old age

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"I just don't want him to suffer anymore..."

Almost always when I walk into a patient’s hospital room, the first thing I do is turn off the TV. Sometimes, I'll turn off the roommate’s TV, too. (Every room has two, you know.) Have you ever tried to maintain interest in someone’s diarrhea when right behind your head there’s a John Wayne marathon on AMC ?

Well, for whatever reason, today I left it on as I walked up to the bed in critical care. And sure enough, like the TV-zombie child of the 70’s that I am, I was soon fighting desperately to concentrate on my patient’s kidney failure instead of the breaking news on the Today Show: “NYC studio offers naked yoga.” That’s right, naked yoga. Fig leaves? Shame? Those are so Garden-of-Eden. Here in America, we gonna let it all hang out.

Suddenly, it became clearer than ever before that all a man needs to understand America is Isaiah 5...

Longevity reappraised...

Pastor Steve Jeffrey of North London's Emmanuel Evangelical Church has updated the life expectancy stats for the UK by taking into account the slaughter of the unborn. Demographers brag about gains in life expectancy but they don't count the...

Happy 96th birthday, Mom Taylor!

Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised. Give her the product of her hands, and let her works praisein the gates. - Proverbs 31:30, 31

It has become a tradition each year for the Taylor children and spouses to gather in March to celebrate Mom Taylor's birthday with her. This year Mom turned 96. How beautiful she is, mind, body, and heart! Here are a couple pics to commemorate the occasion: first, a pic of Mom with nine of her ten children (son John wasn't able to be here); and second, a pic of all seven daughters.

(Back row left to right: Cindy, Mark, Marty, Janet, Becky, Peter, Mary Lee; front row: Alison, Mom, Gretchen)

He who saves his life will lose it...

So many people have forwarded links to this article that I stop my work to post it here for those who haven't yet read it. As one young student at Clearnote Pastors College notes, although the article is on the population decline in these United States, it touches a number of other important subjects including, "children not caring for their parents because of Social Security, outsourcing our fertility to Hispanics, and college being detrimental to fertility."

Fruitfulness in old age...

TreeSproutMy wife Mary Lee just forwarded this pic, commenting "I'm not dead yet." (TB)

A tribute to motherhood on the occasion of Mom Taylor's ninety-fifth birthday...

Mom95(TB: This pic taken of my mother-in-law, Mrs. Ken (Margaret) Taylor, yesterday on the front lawn of her house in Wheaton was on the occasion of our celebration of Mom's ninety-fifth birthday. The following post first ran here on Baylyblog back in 2004. It is a tribute to Mom Taylor and David's and my mother, Mrs. Joe (Mary Lou) Bayly. Both are mothers in Israel and we give God thanks for them.)

My mother-in-law studied for her degree in Home Economics during the late '30s and early '40s, graduating summa cum laude from Oregon State University. After marrying her childhood sweetheart, she gave birth to 10 children in 14 years. Her husband, engaged for most of the years when the family was young as editorial director of a religious publishing house, brought home low wages, so frugality was a necessity and the degree served this young mother and her family well.

Food preservation, hygiene, cooking, sewing, and home budgeting were part of the home ec curriculum and, along with the liberal arts training which came with every bachelor's degree at the time, these young women graduated with specialized training for their profession of choice--motherhood. Other women took similarly helpful majors in Elementary Education, Bible, Christian Education (my own mother's major), and Nursing.

Then came the frontal assault on housewifery and motherhood carried out largely by a new and powerful aristocracy...

The death of an eighteen-year-old brother...

The LORD is good to those who wait for Him, To the person who seeks Him. It is good that he waits silently For the salvation of the LORD. It is good for a man that he should bear The yoke in his youth. Let him sit alone and be silent Since He has laid it on him. Let him put his mouth in the dust, Perhaps there is hope. Let him give his cheek to the smiter, Let him be filled with reproach. For the Lord will not reject forever, For if He causes grief, Then He will have compassion According to His abundant lovingkindness. (Lamentations 3:25-32)

(NOTE: Since posting this a few hours ago, I've made a couple corrections and added some text at the end.) Back in 1964, my brother, Joe, went off to Swarthmore on a (rare) full ride National Merit Scholarship. He was a philosophy major, ran on the Cross Country team, and loved the Lord. He planned to go on for a Ph.D. and serve in foreign missions.

Meanwhile Dad...

Tim Tebow and Jim Dobson: "He was my friend, faithful and just to me"...

He was my friend, faithful and just to me:

But Brutus says he was ambitious;

And Brutus is an honourable man….

When that the poor have cried, Caesar hath wept:

Ambition should be made of sterner stuff:

Yet Brutus says he was ambitious;

And Brutus is an honourable man.

(Tim, w/thanks to many) Like Allan Bloom's The Closing of the American Mind, Jim Dobson's breakout book, Dare to Discipline, was rejected by many publishers before one gave it a try--in Dobson's case, my father-in-law's Tyndale House Publishers. Later, Dad Taylor gave money to Jim to do a radio show, and the rest is history.

I am not ashamed of Dr. James Dobson. Rather, I've long expressed my deep gratitude for Jim's work on the air and in print. Few men have contributed so much Biblical instruction to my flocks. When the history of the late twentieth century is written, it will become clear Jim was one of the most courageous warriors for truth and mercy and justice in these United States.

You may have noticed on this blog that I've never mentioned the name of that publication in Wheaton calling itself Christianity Today. One reason is their sotto voce attacks on Jim Dobson. Among Wheaton's detelligentsia, it's hip to smirk when Dobson's name comes up, and CT has taken its cue and place among the pea-shooters.

This has been very discouraging for Jim; it's hurt him, his wife Shirley, and their children.

I can hear the exclamations: "Hello! How does Tim Keller feel about your criticism, dude? Something about the splinter and the log!"

Fair enough...

Former surgeon general warns of denial of health care to elderly...

(Tim, w/thanks to Kamilla) Former Surgeon General C. Everett "Chick" Koop is a longtime family friend who, as a pediatric surgeon, worked on several of us when we were growing up in Philly. Here Dr. Koop presents one more voice of wisdom warning of the evil consequences of turning our nation's health care over to our federal masters in the same way we've already turned over to them our automobile industry, our banks, and our unborn children.

Government healthcare means cruelty, oppression, and murder...

For the scepter of wickedness shall not rest upon the land of the righteous, So that the righteous will not put forth their hands to do wrong.  - Psalm 125:3

(Tim) Government funding always means more government control. Always. And today, that cannot possibly be good news.


government control will lead to less compassion (for single mothers,

for instance), responsibility (for single fathers, for instance),

justice (for unborn children, for instance), mercy (for the homeless,

for instance), truth (for children educated in government schools, for

instance) and freedom for citizens forced to foot the bill for

government's aborting those very virtues her subjects hold dear.


is the reason compassionate, responsible, just, merciful, and truthful

Americans are joining Libertarian ranks in droves. They've read Paul

Johnson's Intellectuals

and learned that the sort of leaders profiled by the New Yorker and the NYTimes Magazine will talk about love for the people and national compassion while demonstrating an

astounding selfishness in their own personal lives.

Need I list examples?

Hillary Clinton of It Takes a Village

fame? Her husband, Bill? The latest entrant into the race for that

moral squalor called the Office of Governor of the State of New York,

Rudy Giuliani? Our resident global-warming prophet safely ensconced in his

carbon-spewing mansion (except when he's flying in his carbon-spewing coporate jets), Al Gore?


won this last election by hoodwinking young and middle-aged

"Christians" who had been softened up to the deception by years of

being inoculated against all discernment by ear-scratchers like Rob

Bell and Brian McLaren. Their pastors had turned them into easy marks

for Barack Obama's lies.

But among those who saw through

President Obama's lies...

Moving cross country at 104, ear piercing at 91...

(Tim) Mary Lee, Taylor, and I just returned from a sweet visit to visit Mom Taylor in Wheaton. Last year was the first year we'd missed Christmas with her and the rest of the Taylor clan since some time before we were married. We stayed home with Aunt Elaine as she walked through the valley of the shadow of death, passing into the presence of the Lord one year ago, yesterday.

So this year we returned to Wheaton, and to Mom Taylor who has been a steady and godly influence over us and our children for half a century, now. The hard core traditions include lots of Christmas cookies, turkey, stuffing, and mashed potatos, the once-per-year bowling outing Christmas day or the day after, gifts, quiet reading in the family room, tons of toast late at night (especially), and Scrabble. The family's always been Scrabble mad, but I never play. Being from Philadelphia, I prefer scrapple.

Well, this was simply a preface to the two really important pieces of news from the Taylor clan this year...

Alexander Solzhenitsyn: His final interview...

(Tim, w/thanks to James)
Who are my heroes from the last half of the twentieth century? Among others, Mother Teresa, John Cardinal O'Connor, Francis Schaeffer, Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Joe Sobran, Iain Murray, Dad and Mom (Ken & Margaret) Taylor, John Piper, Dad and Mud (Joe & Mary Lou) Bayly, Elisabeth Elliot, Erwin Raphael McManus, Paige Patterson, Mrs. Kent (Barbara) Hughes, Doug Wilson, and

Alexander Solzhenitsyn. (One of these is a joke--you figure it out.)

About twenty years ago, I read Michael Scammell's Solzhenitsyn: A Biography. A very long read, it was superb and I commend it although I'm sure it's been superseded in more recent years. Personally, I'd attribute the fall of Communism more to Solzhenitsyn's courageous writing than any other factor, including Reagan's famous...

In the midst of life, we live in death...

(Tim, w/thanks to Bill, Tom, and Priscilla) Last year, my dear friend, Bill Mouser, passed on this report by his friends, Tom and Priscilla, of the death of Priscilla's parents. At the time, Mary Lee and the rest of our family were coming to the end of six years sharing our home with my own Aunt Elaine Bayly, who died the end of December. I thought this meditation on life and death was helpful and asked Tom and Priscilla for permission to put it up for others to share. They kindly agreed and I thank them.

So here, first, is a letter from Bill Mouser introducing the letter; followed by Tom and Priscilla's letter, itself...

Happy Mother's Day!



(Tim) Tomorrow is Mother's Day, so here are pictures of David's and my mother, Mary Louise Bayly, and my father and mother-in-law, Ken and Margaret Taylor (Dad Taylor is deceased).

And honoring God Who gave us motherhood, here's a sermon on a wonderful Mother's Day text--Isaiah 60:10-14. This was the funeral sermon given several years ago on the occasion of the death of Bloomington's mother-in-Israel, Rita Cuffey...





Mr. Kenneth N. Taylor, 1917-2005


Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints. Psalm 116:15

See you "up there"...

As another example of ending well, submitting to God's dispensation of decrepitude with a willing and usually cheerful spirit, I would hold up my dear father and mother-in-law, Ken and Margaret Taylor. What joy and love we have received from them through the years! And how faithful they have been to demonstrate bearing up under the sorrows of life (and now the limitations of old age) with submission and faith.

Wheaton College is the alma mater both of my own father and mother and of Mary Lee's parents. Recently Wheaton's alumni magazine asked Dad Taylor to write a short piece for them--he could choose the subject. Here then is the piece he wrote, published this month. May God give all of us this same spirit during the years when the "almond tree blossoms" (Eccles. 12:1-7).

On Aging

by Kenneth N. Taylor

(from the Autumn 2004 issue of Wheaton College's alumni magazine, Wheaton)

When Wheaton's editor asked me to write a short article, I guess I was feeling grumpy that day and tried to decline. But she is a good sales lady; and as she opened the possibilities ("You can write on anything you want to"), I began to think about the fact that not many people are old enough to write with authority on Old Age. This fact was further driven home when my wife of 64 years, Margaret, had only seven of her classmates plus spouses show up for their 65th class reunion at Alumni Weekend in May. So being one of the "last roses of summer," I surely should be able to share a few helpful thoughts.

The just shall die by faith...

Thinking about a friend's death at his own hand, it has struck me that he was the first to face a question that many, many of my baby-boomer generation will face: shall we age and die by faith?

Shall we submit to the suffering the Lord makes us stewards of, "working out our salvation with fear and trembling (knowing) it is God who is at work (within us), both to will and to work for His good pleasure" (Philippians 2:12,13)? Or shall we be self-willed, spurning God's tool of suffering and making ourselves masters of our own destiny?

Make no mistake about it--this question will become personal as we suffer the breakdown of our bodies and feel the weight of old age as Solomon here describes it: