This is how we met… (guest post for Leigh Kramer)

We had no idea what we were in store for…..

In a complete change of pace for Reconciling Viewpoints, today I’m guest posting for Leigh Kramer as part of her “This Is How We Met” series. So, instead of chatting about theological miscellany, I’m telling the story of how I met my wife Valerie… 26 years ago today, no less!


Springtime and stories of love seem to go hand in hand, but for those of us that are… umm, relationally challenged (i.e., shy), it doesn’t typically happen naturally. Thankfully, my school held a carnival (Mardi Gras) as a fundraiser each May, and fraternities and sororities would work together to host a variety of booths. It was through this “rite of spring” that I met my wife.

I readily admit that I’m a math geek, so it shouldn’t be too surprising that I was in a fraternity of engineering/physics/math majors. Think Big Bang Theory crossed with Animal House. (Scary, huh?) To read more, head on over to Leigh’s blog here.

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Miracles, Divine Intervention and Tim Tebow

Miracles, divine intervention and football have a relationship that goes back a long way.

From Roger Staubach’s original Hail Mary to Franco Harris’ Immaculate Reception to the Music City Miracle  and now the yet-to-be-nicknamed Tebow to Thomas TD (the Denver Deliverance?), folks occasionally give the credit for big plays at critical moments to the intervention of that big football fan in the sky, the “G”-man (and I don’t mean the New York Giants.) Continue reading

Posted in Odds & Ends, Sports stuff, Theological stuff | 11 Comments

What are you waiting for? DO it!

2011: Two roads diverged in a yellow wood….

2012: It’s time to figure out which road I’m on.

“Your mission, should you decide to accept it….”

We’re all familiar with Robert Frost’s famous poem wherein he describes how he took the road less traveled by, and “that has made all the difference”.  Well, I can’t really say that I lived that poem out in 2011, but I can relate to it in part….

Why?  Do you know how Frost’s “The Road Less Taken” starts?

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, and sorry I could not travel both and be one traveler, long I stood and looked down one as far I could….

Now that is me!  I’ve been staring down the various roads in front of me rather than heading out with a full head of steam on either. Continue reading

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’tis the season… for Christmas music

Just read a post re: Christmas music over at Alise Write’s page, and it reminded me of a facebook note that I put together on my favorite Christmas albums a few years ago, before I was blogging.  The following post is a slightly updated version of that note….  

What is my favorite Christmas album?  To tell the truth, there’s no way I could name just one album — I love such a variety of music, my favorite at a particular moment will depend on what I’m in the mood for.

That said, here are my favorite Christmas albums by category… sort of.

The Best of the Best: Continue reading

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Stunned by Beauty

I am completely blown away….

You ever see something so beautiful that it stops you in your tracks? You pause, do a double-take, look again to make sure that what you think you saw is truly as amazing as you thought at first glance?

A glorious sunrise ablaze with vibrant colors.

A crisp winter evening, the sky so clear, the stars so bright that the Milky Way reminds you of a river.


I was caught off guard today, derailed when I least expected it. A blogger is dying, and her online community of friends is loving on her in  such a way that I couldn’t ignore it. And when I took a little time to double-take, to pause and consider… well, like I said above, I’m blown away. Continue reading

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Guest post for David Nilsen at “The Screaming Kettle at Home”

Today I have the opportunity to share my 2nd ever guest post with David Nilsen who blogs at “The Screaming Kettle at Home”.  David and his wife recently went through a church transition and he wrote an excellent blog series related to that transition.

When David tweeted that he would be looking for guest bloggers for this week, I realized that I had a few church transition stories too — I volunteered and he graciously accepted.  This post is about when my wife and I moved to a pretty traditional church that was in transition itself….


Church Transition or Weird Dream? Take your pick….

You ever have one of those dreams? You know the one.  You’re the teacher, it’s the 1st day of school, and just before the kids walk in, you realize you’re in your underwear? (I actually had that dream.)

Going to a new church can be nearly as dreadful, especially when you walk in the door and are suddenly hit with that sense of ‘vuja dey’ – the strange feeling that you’ve never seen anything like this before!

One of the more memorable church transitions for my wife and
I – the one that had the most “weird dream” qualities – was back in 1989, a few years after we were married.

To continue reading go to David’s page – the Home Kettle:

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Success or Failure? That depends… whose opinion counts?

Some friends of mine are going through a rough transition, walking away from something they’ve poured their heart and soul into for a lot of years. Have you ever been through that?

You catch hold of a dream – a calling – and you give everything to make a go of it. It’s not just your livelihood, though that certainly plays a big part in it. You invest your time, your talent, your family, not to mention your hopes and dreams – it becomes an integral part of who you are. Although it’s a difficult road and not always easy, that’s ok, because you are doing what God made you to do – this is your life!

And then, it falls apart. Continue reading

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Guest Post for Alise-Write – Judgment Day: “Judge Judy” or “Mythbusters”?

Today, I have the honor of doing my first guest post ever for my blogger/twitter friend Alise Wright (“Alise… Write!”)

Alise is a musician, a blogger/writer, a deep thinker and likes to chat on a wide variety of topics.  She’s currently working on a compilation book project — stories of people dealing with/fighting through depression.

I hope you take some time and check it out.  Alise’s page is always a good read… or “Write!”


Part I: the “Dream”

I had a dream a few nights ago that scared the crud out of me! It was judgment day, but we weren’t standing before God: we were on the set of “Judge Judy” with a studio audience and a wacked out cast of characters.  {Not a real dream… just roll with it…. ;-}

Thankfully, I wasn’t on trial — I was the court reporter, hammering at the steno machine, trying to record the events & discussion going on around me.  Two things annoyed me:  a) I don’t know shorthand (stenotype?), and b) I couldn’t ruminate on the dialogue, I barely had time to record it.

To read the rest, jump over to

Posted in Odds & Ends, Theological stuff, What about Hell? | 2 Comments

A Beautiful Flaw and a Birthday Gift

We don’t make a real big deal of birthdays in our house.  So, when my wife asked what I
wanted as mine approached last month, I kiddingly replied – “I don’t know… how about a Martin 12-string?”

I wasn’t really expecting a guitar, but my flippant response did actually reflect a desire of my heart. Whenever I visit Guitar Center, I have to go into the acoustic room and check out the guitars – sometimes I’ll hang out and play for hours.  Continue reading

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There is NO EXCUSE for hate! Ever!

“I HATE that!”

“What were those idiots thinking?”

“Raca! You fool!”

There’s a lot going on in the world that makes me mad, that makes lots of people mad.  But, I’m starting to get more upset at how people respond to what makes them angry than the actual thing itself.

Today’s example: we all heard about the lawsuit filed last week by the “American Atheists” that want to have the cross-shaped steel beams removed from an exhibit at the National September 11th Memorial and Museum at the World Trade Center site.

Personally, I think it’s a dumb lawsuit and it does make me kind of mad – the inclusion of religious symbols does NOT equate with the endorsement of religion by the government. However, the issue of whether to include the cross at the WTC is not the subject of this blog post. Rather, the hatred that some folks have shown in response to the lawsuit is what has me ticked off and writing today. Continue reading

Posted in Odds & Ends, Unity | 21 Comments