Black Rhinoceros

There is nothing like having a rhinoceros stair at you.  What is he thinking?  I have no fear of this particular rhinoceros charging, because between he an I there is a great chasm and if that were not enough there is also a fence.  As I look at the fence I don't think that it was designed to keep the rhinoceros in, but rather to keep people out.

This picture was taken at the Caldwell Zoo in Tyler, Texas.  I have a secret place that I like to go to, I use the Caldwell Zoo like a local park to get outside to sit and read on a nice day.  My secret reading spot is off the beaten path.  It is a wooden deck with wooden benches facing this Black Rhinoceros and behind me are caged Cheetahs.  People will often come to the edge of this oasis to look at the rhinoceros, but rarely come all the way in, because it would take them off the path leading around the park.

I have been a Registered Nurse for 18 years, I graduated with an Associates Degree in nursing in December of 1997.  I started back to school with the intent of obtaining a Bachelors of Science in Nursing, Lord willing, I will graduate on December 17th.  I have pushed all the way through with very little breaks, I had this past week off from school and the weather was nice so I took the opportunity to visit my favorite reading place.

The book that I was reading on this particular occasion was (On The Incarnation, written by Athanasius of Alexandria).  You won't find this book on the NY Times best seller list.  Athanasius was Bishop of Alexandria, he was born in 296 AD in Alexandria, Egypt and departed to be with the Lord in 373 AD.

The book was very short, but I found to be fantastic.  The way that he describes the Lord and continually refers to Him as being the word causes one to see these things in the mind vividly.  I began following the Lord in May of 2003 and have been reading His word ever since.  I have read a few Christian books, but only a few, almost everything that I know about the Lord comes directly out of scripture.

I have decided that I would like to read some other books, but where to begin.  Should I read the many modern books that can be found on the shelf at Lifeway ? I have tried a few of those in the past, but something seemed to be missing, mainly a deep understanding of the Lord.  Oh they use scripture that's for sure, but something wasn't there.

Should I read someone like C. H. Spurgeon who wrote and preached in the 19th century?  Should I go back to the Reformulation period and read Luther and Calvin?  Then I thought, before doing that why not go back to the beginning of the church and read those who followed in the foot steps of the apostles.  My pastor at Sylvania Church, Phillip Dancey, just so happens to have a Doctorate in Patristics.   Patristics is the study of early Christian writers.

So post graduation, a plan, Lord willing, to begin reading what our brothers in Christ wrote down through the ages, starting in 100 AD.  I would like to begin as close to the apostolic period as possible and read primary writings rather than read about the period alone.  There were many heresies dealt with during the Patristic period.  It is excepted that the patristic period began in 100 AD and ended in 590 AD when Gregory the great became Bishop of Rome starting the Papacy.

In Christ alone,
Mike Peek
Salvation from the wrath of God that we all deserve for our sin is a gift, by His grace alone, through faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone.