Welcome back for the next installment of A Kansas Author blog series. I must say, my line-up of special guest interviews is quite impressive! Please help me to welcome long time writer and new author, Charles Kayser!
C: Thank you!
Let’s jump right in. Obviously, since you’re part of this blog series you have ties in Kansas. Did you grow up in the Sunflower State?
C: Yes! I grew up in Americus, Kansas, and except for my two initial teaching years in Denver, I’ve been all Kansas.
Wow. You’re a teacher. What subject do you teach?
C: I primarily taught English and coached football. I taught for 20 years.
What grades did you teach?
C: My first four years was junior high, the rest was high school and also includes four years as an adjunct instructor with Allen County Community College.
That’s wonderful! At what point did you know you wanted to write?
C: Around age 70.
Really? Do tell!
C: It seems that I have written for fun and business all my life. I’ve had articles published in several venues and started and stopped writing a book about 1977, but my only book that came out in March 2015 is my first.
Congratulations! What’s the name of your book?
Did you self-publish or were you traditionally published?
C: Traditionally published.
You said you wrote for fun and business. What kind of business and what kind of fun?
C: As a pastor for four years, I wrote a column for a weekly newspaper and have written short pieces in other venues. During my business life as a farmer and a salesman writing was often necessary and helpful.
Okay so, you’re a teacher, pastor, farmer, and author. Amazing! Have you done any other other business writing?
C: Having a Masters degree plus, I have written much as a student.
I can only imagine! So what about the writing for fun?
C: For fun I have written poetry and pieces for private entertainment with friends.
Nice! I bet you’re fun to have at parties and gatherings. Out of all the writing you’ve done, what’s your preference?
C: Christian non-fiction – that is almost my sole interest.
Are you currently working on any other books or projects?
C: I’m writing on the power of knowing no person after the flesh but after the spirit.
That’s a heavy topic. What is your most basic hope for the reader?
C: My hope is that I could write something God could use to help us see past what is soulish, what is of the mind, will, and emotions, to what is eternal and eternally real about ourselves and others. As the Holy Spirit imparts truth in the matter, deep peace within and without is the result. God’s love and acceptance will be more deeply felt, and the Holy Spirit will move His love through us with power and boldness.
Beautifully stated. What advice, in relation to your recently published book, do you find yourself giving most often?
C: I have told a number of readers that other readers have reported that they read my book within two or three hours, but then they felt the need to study it. I’ve even advised a couple of readers to start reading with the addendums first.
Sounds like an excellent book for a group study!
Charles, what has been your greatest challenge in life?
C: To die to selfishness that the Holy Spirit may fully express Himself through me.
What were you being selfish about?
C: Perhaps it is the egoistic desire to be approved by other people. I try to constantly identify with the apostle Paul’s goal to die daily that the Spirit of Jesus can live through me more perfectly and freely.
I think most people have struggled with the desire to be approved by others, but I don’t think most people realize it’s not necessary. Dying to self is something all Jesus peeps should be working on.
You write about such complex topics, so now I’m curious… Who is your favorite author?
C: That’s a most difficult question for me; I’ll sayWatchman Nee.
A man with a glorious story. I linked his name for anyone who doesn’t know who he is. What’s the best book you’ve read recently?
C: Andrew Murray’s rewriting of William Law in ‘The Power of the Spirit.’
Yes, sir. You read and write heavy. You’re living a fabulous life. You’ve done remarkable things. So now, I’m going to ask you some ridiculous questions. You ready?
C: Go right ahead.
Chocolate or Vanilla?
Coffee or Tea?
Hot breakfast or Cold?
A-ha! We agree on that one! Dessert before or after the meal?
Thank you, Charles! God bless you. I asked you for a sample of your work and you kindly obliged.
Everyone, I asked Charles for a sample of his work and he kindly obliged. Read this and then go get his book, sign up for his blog here, and keep in touch. Much love to y’all!
Chapter One – Yo-Yo Faith Begins
Jesus, as I read this, I open my heart to You. I trust You to speak truth to me and to guard me from error. Amen.
Have you heard the prideful put-down sometimes said toward people seen as being less intelligent, “His elevator doesn’t go all the way to the top”? In the book of Hebrews, the Holy Spirit has a put-down for those satisfied with a superficial faith: “short-sighted.” It is written at Hebrews 5:13(NKJV), “For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe.” Yes, God sees the milk drinker as yet a baby. It’s as though God is saying, “His yo-yo doesn’t go all the way to the bottom.”
As with most endeavors in life, there is a simple understanding and a deeper understanding. Part of my life was spent as a football coach. Some people sharing the exciting game with me celebrated little more than knowing that when one team makes more goals than the other, it wins. Some understood the nuances of what made offenses and defenses effective. Some understood amazing detail and could appreciate an immense array of aspects of every play. My dear wife sat through four years of my college seasons and then eleven years of my coaching seasons learning very little past the early stages. It was when I stopped coaching and sat with her during our sons’ games that she began to learn some of those deeper things. It was then that I could explain many things as far as her interest carried her. There was much more that I could have taught her had she been interested, had we time to spend on the field in demonstration and at the kitchen table in drawing plays and in reviewing books on coaching strategy.
Dear reader, and I do mean “dear” reader, you are a precious one whom Jesus wants to love and be loved by – for eternity. That vision of your love was the joy set before Him that motivated Him to endure the suffering of the cross. The goal here is to give you a primer, a basic picture of the deeper life. Once you have this understood, you’ll have amazing pleasure watching the Holy Spirit teach you details toward His further blessing. In fact, while you are learning this simple outline, you will experience the Holy Spirit bringing you into His truth. Read prayerfully, in other words, read in the conscious awareness that God is with you. He can be counted upon to say, “Amen,” to what is of Him and to say, “Better check that out,” to things that may not be quite right. Above all, be honorable before Him and check the Scriptures to discover whether these things be true.
Since you have chosen to read this, probably you have already heard and/or read the gospels and some of the epistles. A major home of the deeper things of Scripture is self-proclaimed in the book of Hebrews. The last statement of Chapter 5 tells you that you may have had only milk so far and have not the understanding to eat the meat. You have long been satisfied with only elementary principles of doctrine and are not ready for the deeper things.
It is my experience that many Christians are unable to teach anyone even those elementary principles. See whether you can. Most American Christians I have met have only heard a social gospel or a saving gospel. They have heard teaching after teaching about how Jesus saved them and how to live better. They’ve learned how to have a better marriage, how to be better stewards of their possessions, how to be effective in this or that, how to preach, how to teach, how to lead others to faith – how to’s and why’s without end. Like the thousands of books in Christian bookstores, there is no end to good things that can be learned; yet the elementary principles are still to be discovered. I dare say that very few who read this have learned those elementary principles. Are you ready for the adventure?