Jonathan Merritt Outs Sanctimony or, When the Internet Should Go Dark

I met Jonathan Merritt last month. We had exchanged emails over a subject of common interest, the lack of SBC Leadership speaking to the brouhaha over at the ERLC. I have since read his book, A Faith of Our Own. There was little doubt the personal experiences shared in that part of his story were not exhaustive. He is not much older than our oldest daughter.

All of us have parts of our story we hold in reserve. On most occasions we get to open up those spaces to others on our own terms. Not so in other instances.

A friend alerted me to a Southern Baptist Christian blogger turned Christian Enquirer. Under the rubric of just giving facts, said blogger feigned no agenda. Repeatedly he narrated his decision in such a way to present it as inscrutable. Bloggers love web traffic. Even Christians love train wrecks. The convergence of wanting to be read and wanting to read about someone’s possible fall is the perfect Internet storm.

I emailed Jonathan. Read More

Friday Photo – Seen On Crawford

Last year we went to the Red Dirt Arts Festival in Norman. Across the street from the vendor area I noticed a fellow taking in all in who appeared to be enjoying the day.

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Friday Photo – New Year’s Eve Baby … Tommie

Twenty-two years ago this morning Patty woke me up to say, “We better get to the hospital or . . ..” It was the “or” part I was not sure I wanted to question. I still remember that foggy Saturday morning. We made the trek down Wheatland Road to Charlton Methodist Hospital. Within about twenty minutes we had our Tommie.

Parents like to think they shape their children. And, in certain ways there is little doubt. The older Tommie gets the more I see the ways Patty’s heart for other people is demonstrated in Tommie’s concern for others. She loves her new job caring for children with terminal conditions. She has always had a place for those who seem to fall through the cracks or are discarded by human systems that reward privilege.

Children shape their parents. Only the most strident, un-yielding parent could contend their children do not in some way help them become both better people and better parents. We are glad for both our girls. But today, is Tommie Day. We, Patty and me, are glad God gifted us with Tommie. Our shared lives have made us better people and better parents.

We love you our little “spitfire!” Read More

Reconcling Perpendicular People – Thoughts from the Edge

Funny how things are at odds with their proper place. People too often experience the feeling of being perpendicular to the way the world works as well as how we live in relation to other human beings. The big picture project entails bringing together all things in Christ – reconciliation.

The Revelation 7 passage from the RCL for this week provides a visual image of what it would look like for people from everywhere to stand in reconciled relationship with each other. It would be a picture of people form every nation, tribe, language and tongue.

Christian communities of faith may gift their local communities with living illustrations of reconciled relationships. Too often we gift our communities with the more of the same – just how may we go on living perpendicular to one another. Rather than living at odds maybe it should be that odd people find freedom in whole relationships because of Jesus. And, the peculiarity evidenced is less about how we may stand out in the crowd and more about how we stand next to others in the name of Jesus.

What are your thoughts?