Tuesday, October 31, 2006


Several weeks ago ... it was the time when Marty Duren was the favorite target for pot-shots by folks who didn't care for his post about Jesus' humanity ... I called him. I think it was to make sure he wasn't feeling like two cents waiting for change, but it may have been to kick him while he was down.

I forget which.

The topic of lunch came up, and he mentioned I ought to throw a rope around CB Scott and drag him over to a certain Mexican Restaurant they'd previously visited, and we could spend some time breaking tortillas and solving the problems of the world (including contents). We did just that, yesterday.

CB and I chatted all the way there and back. I had a great time of it, and I think CB thought so, too. At least he was still talking to me when we got back to Birmingham. There's something about fellowshipping with brothers, when there's no agenda, no business, no goal to achieve. We talked about everything imaginable, mostly in the spiritual realm, and the same occurred over lunch with Marty (albeit only 1-1/2-2 hours worth).

In reflecting on the day, I learned a couple things. One is that, as much of a curse as blogs and email and instant information (and sometimes TMI) can be, we're living in a most blessed age. Our friendships could not have existed 25 or 50 years ago. We'd never have met. And I can guarantee you that these guys sharpen your iron like few others can.

Another thing: CB pastors a relatively small church in a Birmingham suburb. Marty pastors a similar sized church in a suburb of Atlanta. I, on the other hand, flunked out of the first year of college and never looked back. Likewise, CB's career is much more checkered, and unconventional, than Marty's, and mine has nothing to do with churches or any other eleemosynary institutions. There's also a big age difference ... Marty is today 5 years closer to my grandson's age than to my younger son's, and CB was born while I was a teenager. Yet here we sat, as brothers.

Thirdly: through blogging and commenting, we have a level play area and all have a voice that's limited only by our voice, and not by our credentials or our background. Even if Wade Burleson or Dwight McKissic had been there, only the number at the table (and on the bill) would have changed. The fact that some might pastor a megachurch would have been irrelevant.

Maybe that's what some folks resent about all this. The insignificance of position. The powerlessness of power. The irrelevancy of credentials or history. If that's true, that raises a whole lot of questions in my mind, about those who hold that resentment.

And .. for those of you who've always wondered what Marty "How'ya" Duren looks like, that's his picture back up at the top.

He'd just finished showing me the secret handshake. I think he's related to Spock.



At 6:39 PM, October 31, 2006, Anonymous Wayne Smith In His Name said...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts of the time spent with two Brothers and how small the world really is.
My Heart is Very Heavy for my Brothers and Sisters in Christ and the persecution they have to suffer due to others ignorance of God Word says.
In His Name
Wayne Smith

At 7:49 PM, October 31, 2006, Blogger Bob Cleveland said...


I appreciate your heart. I've gotten to know Monte Erwin some ... I might say fairly well. When I read about Job, I have to figure God has some purpose in bringing those missionaries back from the field because of the fear of the IMB people. At that, that's the kindest face I can put on it. So it was God's idea, not the IMB's, just as the crucifixion was God's idea and not the Pharisees or the Romans.

Remember, missions is soul-driven, not missionary-driven. Missions isn't something missionaries do; rather missionaries are people who do missions.

God has another purpose for Monte and Janet Erwin now, along with a mess of others. I can't wait to see what it is!

At 11:12 PM, October 31, 2006, Blogger CB Scott said...


"You ain't heavy, your my brother".............Different gifts and all:-)

Marty, well,"he ain't heavy, he's my brother"......different haircut and all:-)

Carlo deBuron (cb) Scott

At 7:23 AM, November 01, 2006, Blogger Bob Cleveland said...


If we keep eating lunch like that, we're ALL headed for great heaviness.

RG (Robert Gordon) Cleveland

At 11:36 AM, November 01, 2006, Blogger Kevin Bussey said...


that is what I like about blogging. I would have never known you, CB, Wade, Marty, Dorcas, Ben, John, Micah, Art,etc.

Love the pic of Marty.


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