Bethany’s Birthday Brilliance

She was very secretive.  She kept pestering me about throwing a Birthday party.  I loathe having a personal birthday party.  “Hey everyone, gather around and let’s celebrate…ME!”  She promised there would only be two people at this party, plus Baby King in the belly of course.

I was told I couldn’t arrive at the house until she called.  I just thought she was decorating.  So I came home and we went out to eat at The Green Onion, which is under new ownership and better than ever.  Once we arrived back home the most spectabulous (such vocabulary is all one can resort to in trying to describe such splendor) birthday book bonanza commenced.  My sweet wife is minister to the minister.  She encourages, challenges, loves, serves, supports, sacrifices, submits, and gently reproves… me.  She was giddy with joy, to surprise and love… me.  I am honored.  I am blessed.

Father, thank you for my sweet Bethany.  Her portrayal of your church, makes me want to be more like your Son.

What followed upon arriving home was 45 solid minutes of book hunting.  Books were hid all over the house.  We went up the stairs then down, and then back up (she didn’t realize she would have to make this trek twice).  You see, to make my 30th a celebration to remember she collaborated with many friends and family to buy books for me.  Thanks to everyone who contributed.  I am thankful for your kindness towards me.  I really was overwhelmed.

Below is what amassed after the hunt (not shown in the picture are the other 25 volumes of The MNT Commentary set!).


  1. An Introduction to the New Testament by D.A. Carson and Douglas Moo
  2. The Cradle, the Cross, and the Crown by Andreas Köstenberger
  3. Institutes of the Christian Religion (2 volumes) by John Calvin
  4. The MacArthur New Testament Commentary (27 volumes) by John MacArthur
  5. Gospel Powered Parenting by William Farley
  6. The Gospel for Real Life by Jerry Bridges
  7. Christian Ministry by Charles Bridges
  8. Calvin by Bruce Gordon
  9. Christ-Centered Worship by Brian Chapell
  10. The Glory of Christ by John Armstrong
  11. Preaching Christ in All of Scripture by Edmund Clowney
  12. The Church by Edmund Clowney
  13. Words to Winners of Souls by Horatius Bonar
  14. In Christ Alone by Sinclair Ferguson
  15. Jonathan and Sarah by Edna Gerstner
  16. Marriage to a Difficult Man by Elisabeth Dodds
  17. Tell the Truth by Will Metzger
  18. The Message of Salvation by Philip Ryken
  19. The Gospel-Driven Life by Michael Horton
  20. God, Marriage, and Family by Andreas Köstenberger
  21. Reading the Bible with Heart and Mind by Tremper Longman III
  22. The Works of John Newton (6 volumes)
  23. The Collected Writings of John Murray (4 volumes)
  24. The Walk by Stephen Smallman
  25. Does Grace Grow Best in Winter by Ligon Duncan
  26. How to Read the Bible for All Its Worth by Gordon Fee
  27. Cecil and Friends (4 Book Set) by Andrew McDonough
  28. Spurgeon: Prince of Preachers by Lewis Drummond

2 thoughts on “Bethany’s Birthday Brilliance”

  1. Happy Birthday! What a great gift(s). I love Newton’s works, especially volume 4 where he preaches through the Biblical texts of Handel’s Messiah.


  2. I still cannot believe that she pulled that off without you knowing. I just knew she would let it slip. I couldn’t have done it and I am so proud of her for all she did to make your birthday special. You also need to give Lynne a big thank you for storing and wrapping all those books. You are indeed a blessed man to have such a wonderful wife and so many wonderful friends.


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