All Work and No Play

Completed volumes of the handwritten bible ready to be hand-bound.

I had a great Oktoberfest dinner with friends recently, all of whom remember my daughter as a diapered toddler. Fast forward, she’s now nearly thirty years old. Passage of time, thin or portly, each of us guys has had to let out a few notches on his belt. That was true even for the fittest of us, who I noticed was sporting a slight paunch. I said nothing. My own suit jacket was hiding similar crimes.

For a guy who can barely get around with just two canes, and whose current desire in life is to finish handwriting the 1611 King James Bible, I seem to have burned the social calendar at both ends in recent months. Nonetheless, I am content with the pace of my days with its often irregular flow of work, play, and modern medicine. I’ve heard that we use fewer facial muscles when we smile than when we frown. Thus I am led to believe that joy is less damaging to the skin, and to our overall deportment.

It is probably true that I could have been finished with the handwriting part of my Bible project if I had just been willing to skip a few of those dinner parties and film festivals. But then I am inclined to take a page from the book of life that recalls all those who worked and forgot to play while time was running out to the end. As much as I enjoy transcribing, I’m reminded that other things are important. If it were not for my friends and family, I would likely have no Bible project at all.

As most of you know, I’ve already completed the Old Testament, and am diligently working my way through the New, and into the Book of John. So the pages of the Master Manuscript are becoming fewer and fewer with each day, while the handwritten volumes pile up. As time goes on, I marvel at how heavy they’ve become. Ooof!

As published in the October 2012 issue of "St. Peter's Press," the monthly newsletter of St. Peter's Presbyterian Church in Spencertown, New York. At the time of publication, Phillip was working on the writings of John, having finished Matthew, Mark and Luke.