December 1, 2020

Updating Updates

For my 20th college reunion in 2000 we invited Brother Bob Stamps to come speak to us. Bro. Bob was our chaplain back in the 1970s, and he is still much-loved by those who were in school during that time. When he got up at our banquet to speak, he said, “I wrote out a sermon last week that I really like. That I really want to share with you. But then two nights ago God gave me another message that I am to share with you. But I don’t want to give up my first message. So tonight I am going to preach two sermons to you.”

And we loved them both.

This morning I am going to share two things with you. There are a couple of items I want to update for you. That’s what I’m doing now. But I also had something on my heart to share with you concerning our trust in the Lord, and that’s what I’m going to do next. This afternoon, Lisa Dye has an essay to share with you that is frankly some of the best writing I have read. The Lord is using what she wrote to mess with my heart. So you will have a full plate today. Loosen your belt and let’s dig in.

Update #1: A few weeks ago I wrote about how iMonk Adam Palmer and his family were held up at gunpoint in their home. The robbers took Adam’s computer, which was his tool for making a living as a writer and editor. I asked you to give generously toward a new computer for Adam, and you did. You gave nearly $1200 in just a few short days. That is incredible. I love this community.

The police caught four of the five boys—boys, ages 14-17—who did this. They were otherwise good boys who went on a weekend rampage of terror, complete with carjackings, house break-ins, and finishing with murder. The same shotguns they leveled at Adam, his wife and their children were used the next day to kill a 16 year old boy.

The police recovered Adam’s laptop, but not in the same shape as it was. And it was now evidence in a homicide investigation. Just last night Adam ordered a new computer using the money you so generously gave. He told me how humbled and grateful he is. He wants to write about this ordeal once he and his family are a bit more settled. You can keep praying for the Palmers as they look for another place to live, and for peace to be restored to their shattered hearts. You can also pray for the boys who committed these crimes.

Update #2: Yesterday morning I awoke to a not-so-fun note on our web site saying our account was suspended. No doubt many of you saw it too. (For the record, JoanieD was the first to email me directly to point out the problem. Way to represent Maine, Joanie!) I quickly emailed our web master, Joe Stallard, who then called me. He had good news and bad news for me.

The good news is there are now so many of us iMonks—some 80,000 to 100,000 unique visitors every month—that we have overloaded the server at our host site.  The bad news is because of this our hosts have said we need to be on a dedicated server. That’s good news, because it will mean a more secure (fewer crashes) web operation. But it’s bad news because … it means more money. Whereas I was paying $12.99  a month for our shared server space, the dedicated server will now cost us $85 a month—starting today.

Did I mention to you last week I am now working at Target?

You are such generous givers. You really are. Again, look at what you did for Adam and Michelle. And some of you have donated to our site when you have very little money on your own. You have given as the widow did when she gave her last two coins. God will not forget that.

Are there a few people in our community (our rather large community) who could give several thousand dollars to help us pay all our expenses, and maybe even pay our writers? Yes, I’m sure there are. But you know what? I kind of hope no one does that. I think it is a lot better to have many contribute ten or fifteen dollars than one person do it all. But that’s just me. Should God lay it on your heart to write a five-figure check to iMonk, I won’t stop you.

Pray for us. Pray for each writer as you read their essays. Remember to pray for our First Lady Denise Spencer. And know we are praying for you and for our little gather. One hundred thousand unique visitors a month? Well, if we get together on July 4, someone else is going to have to bring the potato salad…


  1. Another Mary says

    Unfortunately, I’m one of those little senders, not a 5 figured person, but I have love this site for years and recommend to anyone who listens to me for more than 5 minutes. I would love to send some support. . My husband and I are very involved in our local church but this ongoing conversation with believers from all over gives voice to so many areas that most churches don’t have time to address. May God continue to bless you all for keeping this going.

    • My words exactly, thanks Another Mary, I share those views and goals also. IMONK may not be real life, but it’s a great virtual neighborhood.


  2. I made some rough comments and had some disagreements on one the posts (the day before yesterday) and woke up the next day, tried to get into the I.Monk site and received ‘account suspended’.

    I erroneously concluded that I was being censored by the site.

    I made a blog post (which I removed pretty quickly) talking abput how easily one can be thrown off a blog site.

    I was wrong, of course. I apologize to you, Jeff, and Chaplain Mike for thinking what I thought, and writing it down.

    Yes, I’m an idiot. I can’t change that (maybe I can a little) But I can say that I am sorry.

    I am sorry, and I ask your forgiveness.

    – Steve Martin (the jerk)

  3. If I paid by the word for every comment I make on here, you’d be paid up for the next five years 🙂

    If we all throw a fiver in the collection plate (or whatever anyone can spare), then that may keep you going. Either that, or get Mark Driscoll to pipe his sermons on here 😉

    • Radagast says

      So with the exchange rate you’d actually be throwin in more than the rest of us fivers my Irish friend…

      I too enjoy this site and have lots of respect for those who can make sense with words on paper (or electronic media as the case may be).

  4. Glad to have this arrive on (monthly) payday at our house!! 🙂

  5. I love this website and this blog. Its a unique environment that is raw and beaitiful. I wish this blog was representative of the church in life. If it did I’d have no problems showing up and asking some of the questions I ask. I want to say thanks to Jeff Dunn, Chaplin Mike, and the community here. You guys are all awesome!! 🙂

  6. Okay, I hate to sound so modest, but I make some pretty killer potato salad and don’t mind making some for everyone. But, I’m gonna need some help peeling potatoes! Fer real, yo!

  7. Cunnudda says

    “Otherwise good kids” did that to Adam, then murdered someone? Seriously, Jeff?

    • I’m going out on a limb here by even saying what I’m about to say, but I’ve been bothered for a couple hours by your comment Cunnudda. And I mean absolutely NO disrespect to Adam and his family by this but…….

      Based on Jesus’ words I’m a murderer too. I’ve hated people in my heart and if you dig too deep you might find some hatred still lurking in the muck. But, otherwise I’m a good person.

  8. Praise God they were caught. That has to give a modicum of peace to the Palmers.

  9. Worth a PayPal click to me. Thanks.