The Last of the Debaters

  When I was in high school, I loved to debate. I had been honing my craft for years, but my parents failed to fully appreciate my skills. They called it arguing. I disagreed, citing five obvious reasons they were wrong. Years later, Mom and Dad are still in denial…and therapy. High school allowed me …

What’s Wrong With the World?

  Trolling my van’s radio dial for classic rock on a recent drive, I happened across two voices.  It was talk radio.  I immediately picked up the voice of a caller who spoke fluent Christianese.  What was wrong with the world, at least for that hour’s discussion purposes, was single moms whose families were supported …

The Broken People God Uses

  God was certainly not going to be doing anything good through my life. That was for certain. Most kids discover their sexuality in adolescence. Not me. I was barely 5 years old. I can’t tell you how it happened or when, only that it did. It brought the most amazing sensations. With the good …

Ignorance is Bless

  There is something magical about sailing. I love the classic Christopher Cross song by that name, and I have always harbored a sailing fantasy. Imagine, then, the moment years ago, when I discovered someone on Craigslist was giving away a Sunfish sailboat. I snatched it up both for the thrill of sailing and the …

I Did Not See That Coming

  I have moved from one house to another…a lot.  By my count, I have lived in 19 different houses, meaning I’ve moved 18 times in 56 years.  I consider myself a bit of an expert. Let me tell you a fun story about move number 16, a move that took my family from Alabama …

It Rocks to be Right

It’s fun to be right. It’s even more fun when people know that you are right. I spent about 19 years in school, and it’s impossible to know how many times I sat in a classroom when the teacher asked the class a question, expecting one of us to raise our hand and give an …

It Sucks to be Wrong

[This is chapter one of my book, Partly Wrong.] “Huge Lot of Comics and Baseball Memorabilia.” The Craigslist ad title screamed at me. I think it was 2004. Only 3 years earlier, I had discovered–and joined–this intriguing 6 year old website with a weird name, eBay. It was fascinating, and I tried my hand at …

God, Border Laws and Desperate Mothers

  Bible History is full of desperate mothers.  So is modern history. There is a connection.   The mother is fleeing through the desert with her boy, desperate to find a home. When her canteen runs dry, Hagar collapses in tears yards from her baby, because she can’t bear to watch him die.   The …

Wacky Things Jesus Said

  Jesus said some wacky things.  What they suggested was wackier still.   Jesus said some things he had no business saying.  Unless.  You need that word unless.  I have heard people say things they had no business saying…unless…well, unless one particular thing was true.  In other words, you could only say what you just …

Why Prayer Doesn’t Work

  It was 1992, and we discovered we owed the IRS that year.  This was highly unusual. Only two years earlier, Joy and I had moved with our young family from South Carolina to Massachusetts to start a church. With limited income, three kids and the earned income tax credit, we usually got a refund. …