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Showing posts from January, 2011

Take every opportunity to say "Thanks"

Man years ago, I was not sure I wanted to have kids, so I started praying about it. One morning, we sang “Because He Lives” in church, and there’s a line about holding a new baby. Hearing and singing it seemed like a gentle nudge from God. A few other things like this happened, and I told my wife that yes, I am ready to be a father. Now, 9 yrs into dadhood, I can’t imagine I ever wasn’t sure about this.

Then, a few years ago, I brought my then-3-yr-old daughter into a Mardel store to pick something up. It happened that Gloria Gaither was there to do a book signing. She started talking to my daughter, telling her she was pretty, etc. I smiled, didn’t say much, then we left.

An hour later, I met with some friends, and told them who I had run into at the store. One of them said "You know, Gloria Gaither wrote that song, 'Because He Lives'."

I wanted to kick myself, because I had had a chance to personally thank someone who had been used by God to impact me in a very me…

Telling my kids about MLK with YouTube

[This is a repost from 2010, altered for clarity]

I have no interest in letting my kids think of January 17th as just a day off from school. To emphasize the importance of what Martin Luther King Jr accomplished, I plan to do this weekend what I did last year: I utilized YouTube. We gathered around the computer, and we viewed 3 short clips.

First up was the "I've Been to the Top of the Mountain" speech from the night before he was killed. In only a little over a minute, he delivers one of the most passionate, inspiring orations you will ever hear:

then, I went to Patty Griffin’s song based on that speech:

When we did this last year, I paused the song a couple of times to emphasize the following points:

MLK said in his speech that he knew his life might be cut short (as it was just 24 hours later), but he was satisfied just doing God's will. He was convinced that God had asked him to take on this role, and he readily carried…

Why Am I So Drawn to The Ticket?

I live in the D/FW area, where we have been blessed/cursed to have had an all-sports station known as The Ticket for 17 years running, which is an eon in radio terms. I avoided listening for the first few years, but got sucked in several years ago when there was no sports talk alternative. There are some other choices now, but like I said, I'm sucked in.

I've listened to sports-talk stations in this and other cities, and none of them compares. There's some undefinable something about this one station that has not been replicated anywhere. For me, it's The Ticket or nothing else.  I'm not alone, either. In the local ratings, The Ticket's numbers leave the competing stations in the dust.

The problem, of course, is that The Ticket, like soda or chocolate, is good for an occasional taste, but is quite addictive.

I've often tried to figure out why I am so drawn to this one station. and I have finally figured it out. It's no secret that this station's uni…

Review: "Slave", by John MacArthur

I recently received Slave, by John MacArthur, from Thomas Nelson for review purposes, and began reading immediately. It's very well-written and clear. It's deep, helpful , and profound. The main point of the book--that we belong to Jesus, not ourselves--is sadly missing from most teachings these days.

Having said that, there are a couple of things that keep me from recommending it wholeheartedly:

1. The gist of the book's message is spelled out nicely in the first two chapters. Everything that follows simply expands on the contents of the beginning. Like a Saturday Night Live skit that was great at 5 minutes, but unfunny when made into a 90-minute movie, Slave stretches a great teaching a bit too thin.

2. The "slave" language is very uncomfortable to me. The author backs up each assertion very well, so I know it's all accurate, but still, the idea of slavery seems like a terrible thing, and I have a hard time getting past that. I'm guessing I'm not t…