Showing posts from February, 2014

I Wish I Could Enjoy Church

Arrogant people are the worst. Not only is their excessive self-confidence annoying, but they make everyone around them feel less. Because there's no arguing with them. If you have an idea, they have a better one. If you suggest one thing, they'll suggest another. It's as if they have no regard for anyone else or what they have to offer. I'm pretty sure most folks would just as soon avoid people like that entirely. And I'm pretty sure most people see me this way too. If you follow me on Twitter, you may have noticed that my bio says: "I envy the unquestioning mind." That's not some sort of eccentric hyperbole or clever bravado, I mean every word of it. Because contrary to popular opinion, many arrogant people wish they weren't . My arrogance is the result of the unlikely combination of being cynical , skeptical , and critical. Or simply distrusting everyone, doubting everything, and declaring that "good enough" is a farce. But in th

You're Reading the Bible Wrong

When my wife and I were first dating, I wrote her a letter every day. For 2005, this was still kinda old-school. I had recently transitioned from Xanga to MySpace, so I wasn't unaware of the internet. I just thought that she needed to hear from me with my handwriting. These letters weren't grand in any sense. In fact, most of them featured pretty awful drawings of small animals, homicidal stick figures, and grass. I'm sure she didn't know what to do with most of them. But then again, that wasn't the point. I was just hoping she'd get to know me. Pause that thought. For my college internship, I had to teach at least ten seminars on a subject of my choosing. So I decided to teach through the book of Judges for a summer at my church. Compared to many current approaches, this was a relatively large amount of ground to cover in such a short time. But that was the point. My goal was to try to teach this work of literature holistically and give a 30,000-foot view o

Diversity Won't Solve Racism

Most of my friends are white. As a young, white guy working in a major city, I probably shouldn't admit that. Racism has scarred this nation's history, and apparently, I'm doing nothing about it. Now I'm not one of those people who thinks that racism in America was solved back in the 1960's. Tell that to the friend of mine who has been arrested more than once because the suspect was black, and he was one of the only black guys who lived in that small, Midwestern town. No, ignorance won't solve the problems of racial prejudice and bigotry. But then again, neither will diversity. It does seem logical on the surface. People who are different and separated from each other need to come together in the same place and learn about their differences. This is largely how the church has tried to handle it. In fact, according to LifeWay Research , 85% of senior pastors in Protestant churches say that "every church should strive for racial diversity." But

My Daughter is not My Princess

So I have a kid now. At least I think she's a kid. Bill Cosby wasn't kidding about them looking like lizards when they're born. That and she makes noises somewhere between a velociraptor and a screech owl. Still, it's hard to believe I have a precious, baby girl. My little princess. And for her sake, I hope I never call her that again. I know, I know. Princess is meant to be a term of endearment. It represents a father's unwavering affection for that little woman he's responsible for. And as the cultural reference suggests, it's painfully evocative of a stern overlord. Of course, back then, young ladies needed to be protected. But they were also traded like baseball cards for political favors. So much for chivalry. Chivalry is an odd thing, isn't it? On the surface, it's glazed with special kindnesses and social graces. The kinds of things so saccharine it's a wonder anyone was fooled by how patronizing they were. Because the obvious message