ABOUT AUTHOR

 

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Bill Carlson

Hi friend! Welcome to my website for An Encouragement Journey. AEJ is based upon 52 early Encouragements that I wrote and later updated. I wrote about many of the most difficult and controversial issues that face us all. These Encouragements don’t shy away from contentious topics. These disputes can be divisive, but they were always handled graciously. By nature I’m an optimistic person who does not look for a fight. I want to lift people up, to raise heads in dignity and self-respect. It may be idealistic but that’s me.

An Encouragement Journey is based upon Encouragements that I post twice each month. Every post addresses a new topic. I always cite scripture from the Bible to back-up what I say. I’m not a professional theologian. I’ve never been to a seminary. I keep my posts simple and short. I don’t try to exhaustively deal with any subject. Matthew Henry would be disappointed. What I say about a topic may be short, but it is always clear and thoughtful. Since my disability I have retired and spend a great deal of time studying scripture. I’ve become an expert. I selected 52 early Encouragements, updated each, to become a chapter in An Encouragement Journey.

I’m disabled. I am confined to a wheelchair because I do not have a sense of balance. I’ve been through dozens of tests (ugh) but doctors cannot determine why this happened. Their “best” diagnosis is that I have cerebellar degeneration. I have a severe case of ataxia.

This affliction started in 2000. It cut short my career in local and state government. I cannot drive. My speech is almost unintelligible. I type with one finger (even so, there are lots of mistakes). My eyes see double or motion. But despite these and many other limitations, I am not discouraged and I do not ask “why me?” I feel the same way that Job felt. I don’t understand the reason for my sickness, but I trust that God has my best interests in His heart.

I don’t say this lightheartedly. I went through what mystics call “the dark night of the soul.” There was a time where I questioned my faith and whether or not God would come through for me. I had prayed and many others had prayed for my healing, but it never took place. But despite the adversity I finally came to recognize the sovereignty of God in all circumstances. Even though my circumstances were not good, and continue to be poor, I have come to realize that God knows who I am and my condition and has decided it is the best thing for me and others. I am at peace with my limitations. God knows my abilities and I trust Him to guide my steps.

I am able to encourage others to trust God regardless of the pain and adversity they experience. The only reason that I am able to encourage others is because of my trust in God. The Bible makes it clear that Christians are to encourage others and build them up. So I do this through this blog. Apostle Paul said, “Therefore encourage one another with these words” 1 Thessalonians 4:18. I do this through my blog posts and AEJ.

I graduated with a B.A. degree in Political Science from California State University at Long Beach. I was raised in Southern California. I have been married to Cherie since 1975. We have four gifted and accomplished children, and are blessed with twelve delightful grandchildren.

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BILL & CHERIE

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