Saturday, May 08, 2010

Book Review: "Plan B" by Pete Wilson

What is a "Plan B?" A Plan B is a time in your life when things don't turn out the way you planned. A Plan B is a time when things just turn out plain badly for you or those you love. A Plan B is a time when the world seems to be at its darkest and you feel completely alone. We all go through these times. We may hide them and we may deny them, but we all go through them.

How do you explain when bad things happen to good people? How do you reconcile the love of God compared to the terrible things which can happen to us in this life? I don't have the answers to those difficult and very relevant questions. Neither does Pete Wilson.

What Pete does in this book is explain very eloquently that while bad things do, indeed, happen around us and to us, God is ever-present and there to help us through those times of disappointment and crisis. Using examples from his own life (some of which are laugh-out-loud funny), the lives of people he knows and the lives of Biblical characters, Pete shows us while our lives may not follow the "primrose path" we may have laid out, God still brings about all thing for the good of those who love and trust in Him.

I think the biggest benefit to this book is Pete encouraging us to be honest about some things:

  • That we are broken people
  • That we don't have all the answers
  • That God, not us, is in control
It's in this place of honest reflection where we learn that God wants to and does bring out the best of any and all situations. Things may not go the way we envision them, but His ways will always work out best for us in the end.

I highly recommend this book to everyone, because we have all gone through or will go through a "Plan B" where we will need to understand that it is those situations where we need to be open and willing to learn that we don't have all the answers but we can learn to lean on the One who really does.

Disclaimer: I am a member of Thomas Nelson's Booksneeze Blogger program. Although Thomas Nelson Publishing provided the book at no cost to me, this review is my honest opinion of the work.

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Remembering Ernie Harwell

Ernie Harwell, the long-time voice of the Detroit Tigers, passed away yesterday. He was a legendary sports figure and a great among those who were privileged enough to have the opportunity to describe baseball on the radio. He was 92 years old.

As a kid, I loved to follow the Detroit Tigers. In those days they were mediocre at best, but I was a loyal fan nonetheless. I remember listening to Ernie and his broadcast partner, Paul Carey, describe the games with the various transistor radios I had over the years. When they played evening games on the West Coast, I'd often fall asleep listening to the games in the top bunk of my bedroom with an ear plug.

Even after I left Detroit to join the Army I would often be able to catch his voice on WJR, the clear channel station in Detroit. There were a couple occasions I was even able to hear the station in Texas - though that didn't happen but two or three times.

My favorite memory of Ernie happened in 1987. I'd just been assigned to a unit in Augsburg, Germany. I was feeling kind of homesick one day when I turned on the radio and there, on Armed Forces Network, was the voice of Ernie Harwell working his verbal magic over the air waves. I wrote him a letter that day, thanking him for his wonderful work on behalf of the Tigers and for making me feel a little less far away.

Last year, the Tigers paid tribute to the man who for so long was their voice. Reading his speech brought tears to my eyes as I recalled those memories of his voice coming through the radio.

Thank you, Ernie.