9
Aug

15 things I learned on vacation

Yak tastes a lot like beef but costs $4 more.

It doesn’t rain much in Colorado, unless the Johnsons are going to a waterpark.

I want to travel everywhere by train.

It’s good that Miles didn’t lose his suitcase, because he simply wrote “Cheesesteak City” as the address on his luggage tag.

Nina doesn’t talk much when the hike starts at 7 am and she stayed up until 1am watching “The Office.”

Abhineeta Matney makes amazing Indian food from scratch (and she’s gracious when you’re 15 minutes late because of the bad traffic in Denver).

There is always, at …

18
Jul

repost: why vs. how


If you’re stuck, consider asking “how” instead of “why.”

I’ve realized most of the questions keeping me up at night start with why: Why did she say that? Why does he feel that way? Why didn’t that client call back? Why hasn’t this relationship worked out? And why does it bother me so much? (That’s an especially fun one, as it blends “I shouldn’t feel the way I do” WITH the unpleasant question. Not recommended for beginners.)

Why questions about ourselves can be helpful—it’s good to consider our own issues and the way we …

27
Jun

opinions expressed by the 62-year-old Italian couple behind me on American flight 4657

–This flight is already ten minutes late.

–It’s not tornado season. That’s October. It’s like the hurricanes.

–Probiotics! I’m saying, they just make you so itchy.

–We should have taken off twenty minutes ago!

–I brought my own water. You can’t trust the water on these planes.

–You want to always get a flu shot. You don’t get a flu shot, you’re gonna cry.

–Solitaire is better with the sound turned way up. You need to hear the cards clicking.

–Are you KIDDING ME? They haven’t even closed the plane’s door yet.

–These bags of pretzels couldn’t get any smaller.

–Someone’s going to figure out his death was a set-up for life insurance. Sure they will. We figured it …

20
Jun

repost: 11 rejected VBS themes

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God’s Great Creation and How You’re Ruining It

It’s Only Grape Juice: Sharing the Truth with Your Catholic Friends

Roll Up Your Sleeves and Let’s Clean the Church

God Can Do Anything—So Pray Away Your Peanut Allergy!

Heaven is for Rizzle: Rapping through the Psalms

Journeys with Job

jabVaccination Station! Just Get Your Measles Shot Already

Talking in Tongues by Tuesday

A Warrior After God’s Own Heart: Re-creating the Battles of David*

Jesus Loves You, But He …

13
Jun

a milestone for Miles

I originally created this video last September when Miles turned 18, but only shared it via Facebook. Today it returns with the blog treatment because tomorrow Miles, unbelievably, graduates from high school!

My memories with Miles go back to 2010. He was a sweet, funny sixth grader who stood only 5′ tall and whose voice hadn’t changed. (Update: he’s now a giant.)  Of course, Matt’s memories go back to 1998 when Miles was a sweet, squishy baby with the whole world ahead.

The whole world is still there, Miles, just waiting for you to make your mark. We love you and we’re proud of you.

 

 

6
Jun

“social” event

My latest editorial in Christian Standard:

Gather any group of people over age 40 and you’ll hear frustration about how much time younger people spend on their phones. “I’m at a restaurant watching a couple,” a friend told me recently. “They are obviously on a date, and yet they are both staring at their phones instead of talking to each other.”

The friend texted me this information from her own phone.

It’s true that smartphone use is out of control for many of us. One …

4
Apr

repost: cracks of God

As I type this, I’m hiding from the Jehovah’s Witnesses.

Every month or so two of them appear on my doorstep, pamphlets in hand, asking for my time and suggesting I read articles with titles like “The Truth about Halloween.” Because the walk to my front door passes right by the dining room window, and because I spend much of my workday on the comfy red chair in front of that window, it’s easy for them to spot me inside. To avoid talking to them I’ve taken to scurrying …

14
Feb

14 things about Matt


1. Sometimes, in certain small circles, I get more attention because of my writing or some of the other work I do. Matt is very talented himself, but he never resents being “Jen’s husband.” He encourages me in every opportunity that comes and he makes a point of telling me he’s proud of me.

2. With a BA and two master’s degrees, Matt can hold his own talking to just about anyone. He has well-formed opinions on theology, politics, history, and social issues and can discuss them intelligently. Yet he is at …

7
Feb

my life in texts, part 10

Hi from Atlanta.
Hi from Denver.
Hi from Chicago.
Hi from Atlanta. Again.

Where the %#$@ do you hide the butter?

I can’t do a phone conference in the subway.

Part of my job is coordinating 14 people, none of whom speak English.

Please turn off the hot tub jets.

If you don’t take out the recycling I will punch you in the facehole.

Do u have 19 cents?

I can make you hot chocolate as bribery.

There is not an abundance of competence in this store.

Nina – turn off the hot tub!

It’s like there’s a demon on …

2
Feb

This can be the best time for the church – in spite of Trump

I am more fearful for the American church during Trump’s presidency than I ever was during Obama’s.

The American church panicked as Obama legalized gay marriage, which many evangelicals saw as a direct violation of the Christian scriptures and their own religious beliefs. Many Christians also took issue with Obama’s approach to health care, foreign policy, the environment, and federal spending.

Many Christians railed against these policies, maligned Obama, and feared for the future of the nation. However, many of them also grappled more deeply with their understanding of biblical sexuality, prayed more strongly for our …