William James in his classic work The Varieties of Religious Experience argues that the religious life and vision exclusively pursued tends to make a person eccentric and exceptional. This quote resonates with me on so many levels. On more than one occasion I've had people comment "You're an odd person." So I suppose I've got the eccentric part … Continue reading Reflections of inconsistencies
The thoughts associated with a thousand events compete for space in my mind. Past, present, and future have a way of shouting for attention interrupting the quiet moments of solitude that I seek. The oasis that I actively cultivate to escape the cavalcade parading by is indeed but a mirage. There is no oasis. There … Continue reading Long ago and far, far away
President Trump is once again attempting to exploit his relationship to Evangelicals who contributed in large measure to his election in 2016. Over this past weekend he attended church in Nevada where he was praised by the Pastor and blessed by parishioners. A picture captured by the New York Times photojournalist Doug Mills captures the … Continue reading Political preference or Trump worship?
As the annual Columbus Day holiday once again comes and goes, I went back and combined some notes from two helpful books that I read in the past few years that continue to challenge and shape my thinking on these issues. I recommend them both to those of you wanting to educate yourself on these … Continue reading Examining Columbus and the hateful legacies of Whiteness
“What if my whole life has been wrong?” I’m haunted by this line from Tolstoy’s classic work The Death of Ivan Ilych. As Ivan’s life of pleasantry pursuits is overtaken by disease and pain he comes to the realization that perhaps his life has been nothing but shallow and futile. Echoing Christ on the cross he … Continue reading Avoiding death bed epiphanies
I used to mistake sticks of dynamite for candles. An easy enough mistake to make, after all they both had a fuse and they were both capable of producing light, but one was destructive while the other was illuminating. I used to preach at people instead of having conversations with them. I was convinced that … Continue reading Less spectacular moments at less elevated positions.
Dear Erin, It seems like yesterday. Petite frame with a big voice you entered our lives like the star you are making her Broadway debut. Fearless, you made your presence known from the moment of your birth and haven't relented in the two decades of your existence. As a thoughtful entertainer you've owned the stage … Continue reading To Erin. On the occasion of your wedding.
Dear Isaac, In a couple of days, I will pass my daughter’s hand to you in marriage. I want you to know that this is one of the highest honors of my life. I am thankful for the young man that you are and look forward to seeing who you become. I know that you … Continue reading A daughter given. A son gained.
I was invited by a colleague to prepare a video to share with aspiring journalist, these are some thoughts that came to mind. The more I think about it, this is good advice for anyone during these difficult times. No matter what kind of work you are doing, these attitudes should prove helpful for all … Continue reading Good advice in divisive times
The Bible shares a sordid tale of twin boys, Jacob and Esau. The eldest, Esau, born slightly earlier than Jacob, ended up trading his birthright privileges to Jacob for a nondescript bowl of stew. Because of this action, Esau was forever branded as a profane man. Notoriously regarded as foolish for failing to recognize the … Continue reading Losing my appetite for unremarkable religious stews.