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Guy Sayles

The “Book of Common Prayer” includes a grateful and humble acknowledgment of “this fragile earth, our island home.” It’s a moving phrase; and, on this Earth Day, I pray that we will love this fragile earth with courageous and tender love, realizing that it’s not a warehouse of resources, but our home, a home we […] Read More

We’ve all heard or used the expression, “My heart isn’t in it anymore.” When we feel that way, we’re in good company. Twice in 2 Corinthians 4, early and late in his reflections on the relationship of our humanity and the good news of Jesus, Paul claimed, “We do not lose heart” (2 Corinthians 4:1,16). […] Read More

One Saturday afternoon while walking downtown among crowds of tourists and Christmas shoppers, I saw and heard two conversations that caught my attention. An older couple was fussing with each other about what to do next as they came out of a store. He had a huge bag in each hand, while she pointed to […] Read More

Guy Sayles is the pastor of First Baptist Church in Asheville, North Carolina, and is a board member of the Baptist Center for Ethics. Guy’s articles that have appeared on are available here. 1. Where did you grow up? Atlanta, Georgia. 2. What is your favorite Bible verse, book or story? Why? John 3:16. […] Read More

Day by day, in the decisions we make and the actions we take, we are choosing whether to live in the desert of division or in the promised land of peace; in the wilderness of exclusion or the paradise of acceptance; in the far country of fear or the home of love. We know all-too-well […] Read More

I sat for a while on a bench near the Asheville, North Carolina, courthouse after a long walk around town late one afternoon. Almost directly in front of me on the stone-paved area in front of the amphitheater stage was a group of five younger adults—three men and two women—and two good-sized dogs, both adorable […] Read More

Not long after I came to Asheville, N.C., the Republican Men’s Club of Buncombe County invited me to their breakfast meeting to tell them about myself and my hopes for First Baptist Ashville’s future. The man who invited me was a member of the church and someone I liked and respected. He assured me that […] Read More

Many years ago when we were trying to sell our house, a real estate agent gave us a long list of small things we could do to improve the house’s appeal to potential buyers.  One tip was to bake bread before a showing. “It makes a house smell like a home,” she said. Bread, home and […] Read More

This summer, at a brief retreat along the Hudson River about an hour north of New York City, I rediscovered a forgotten prayer by Anselm of Canterbury, a 12th-century guide to matters of the heart and spirit. The prayer begins:  O my God, teach my heart where and how to seek you, where and how […] Read More

I’ve lived in our east Asheville, N.C., house longer than I have lived in any house in my entire life, including during my childhood. Before coming to Asheville, I lived in: â—     Huntington, W.Va. â—     Five different houses and communities in greater Atlanta â—     Statesboro, Ga. â—     Louisville, Ky. â—     Edwardsville, Ind. â—     LaGrange, Locust […] Read More