Dear Roy, You were the friend of my youth. You are black and I am white. When we became adults, we drifted apart. You served in the military. I served in the ministry. You died too soon for me to tell you this in person, so I’ll tell you now. You endured more than you … Continue reading A letter to Roy. He’s the Black guy in my pictures.
Dearest Harlow, We are all thrilled at hearing you will be arriving tomorrow. There has been so much joy in preparing for you to join us. I know we haven't met formally, but I'm your Appa. It is a strange title with origins in the Korean language, and your Dad tells me it also has … Continue reading A few last minute things before you arrive.
Dear Pastor, I was incredibly blessed by your defense of expository preaching in your sermon last Sunday. The way you always manage to provide such vivid details from Bible verses is encouraging and inspiring, and upon reflection, I can’t think of a Sunday where you haven’t defended your methods, making it clear that as a … Continue reading Dear White American Pastor…
“Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.” — Anais Nin Like millions of Americans I took a stroll down a nostalgic highway and enjoyed watching Friends: The Reunion, also known as "The one where they … Continue reading My own “Friends” reunion episode
Toni Morrison said, “The function of freedom is to free someone else.” I don’t know that I consider myself free, but I know that I’m making progress on that road to freedom. I can say that I am less shackled than I once was. There was a time in my life that every thought and … Continue reading A Liberating Ambiguity
Margaret Atwood says, “The written word is so much like evidence -like something that can be used against you.” As someone aspiring to trade in words and phrases, I’m increasingly aware of the challenges of finding my authentic voice. I’m fearful at times because I know this kind of honesty demands a price, and attempting … Continue reading On the difficulty of opening jars
Let me tell you about my friend Jon Nobles. Jon was one of the first guys that I felt the nudge of the Spirit to reach out to in my initial years as an inexperienced pastor. Jon, was not without his problems, but when he was good, he was great! He worked hard, had an … Continue reading Because I don’t want to forget
This afternoon finds me with a grateful heart as I sort through the thoughtful cards and kind words of family and friends wishing me "Happy Birthday!" I turn fifty today and it is hard to imagine where the last half century has gone, but it is gone. I'm thankful for every moment and every experience … Continue reading This circus turns fifty
I was eleven years old in 1982 and in the sixth grade at Gosnell Public Schools. Gosnell is a curious little community nestled just beneath the Missouri state line as you cross over into Arkansas. During the 1980s at the height of the Cold War, our rural community thrived because it was adjacent to the … Continue reading Rethinking my Ed(sex)ucation
Political expediency and Biblical theology make for poor bedfellows and often dangerous ones. This is especially true when it comes to powder keg of the Middle East. In the past few days I have seen an increase in social media chatter from Evangelicals touting that as Christians we have a responsibility to stand with Israel … Continue reading Should we support Israel no matter what?
It is an unseasonably cool day. The rain started early this morning, unrelenting in its monotony, steady sheets followed by slow drips. A seasonal anomaly soaring in value because of increasing scarcity. In just a few days summer's heat will once again extract lament. But in this momentary spring reprieve the sun is absent from … Continue reading The entangled sparrow