With apologies to Mr. Dickens, his characterization of Victorian England could be ours today. How the worlds of employment and finance have changed! Here are some features of life in the 21st century for which I am grateful:
Credit cards. I don’t have to carry as much cash as in the old days, when there was always risk of losing it or being held up. Widespread card use goes back, amazingly, only into the 1970s. The technology for almost instant... Read More
For many parents, the phrase “Back to school” really means “Back to bleachers.” As high school sports are beginning, now is the perfect time to give our student-athletes a reminder to be compassionate competitors. And Pastor Jared does a great job in this Your Time of Grace video, helping parents talk to their teens about that.
Ah, but Christian parents, what about being compassionate competitors in the stands? As we settle in to cheer for our favorite team, let’s consider... Read More
For the next few weeks, many parents are dreading saying goodbye to their kids as they drop them off at college. For parents of new military recruits and cadets at military academies, however, there’s a different set of concerns. With training lasting for 7 to 12 weeks, these parents know that their children are about to head into a lonely and physically and emotionally exhausting time.
While we hear so much about how self-absorbed this generation is, we see in... Read More
James Fields Jr. allegedly used a Dodge Challenger to mow down pedestrians in Charlottesville last week. Dozens of people among the counterprotesters were injured, some badly, and 32-yr.-old Heather Heyer was killed. Fields, an Ohio resident, was charged with second-degree murder and multiple counts of malicious wounding. He is 20 years old.
What do you make of the chaos in Charlottesville, a sweet city built around the university whose campus center was designed by Thomas Jefferson himself? If you had... Read More
When we were in the military, I got really good at goodbyes. Not because they got easier, but because I got better. When I was still a rookie at the constant string of goodbyes, I wouldn’t allow myself to feel their sting. Frankly, there’s a good chance I just pretended I didn’t know it would be the last time I’d see someone and they’d get a casual, “See ya!” By the time my husband retired, I was wiser—and realized just... Read More
My father slipped into eternity on Christmas Eve 2014. He had always been a powerful influence on my life. He showed me how to be a Christian, a man, and a pastor. He always expended a great deal of energy to keep track of people, remember their names, remember their children’s and parents’ names—always showing interest in their lives. He had the gift of making other people feel important. He was a terrific speaker, both in the pulpit and classroom.... Read More
Well, are you ready for August 21? People in North America will be treated to a fairly unusual sight—a full solar eclipse. For about two and a half minutes that day the moon’s sky disk will exactly match that of the sun’s, and there will be eerie twilight in the middle of the afternoon. Everybody in the country will notice diminished sunlight, but the darkest moon shadow (“the path of totality”) will fall on a line 70 miles wide that... Read More
The “Surround Yourself . . .” memes are abundant on social media, reminding you to be around people who encourage, inspire, challenge, and support you. No one ever tells you to surround yourself with people who drag you down, take all your energy, and make you feel bad about yourself.
And as much as those Facebook philosophers’ advice seems like simple common sense, Professor Moran Cerf, a neuroscientist at Northwestern University, actually backed it up with research. He discovered that... Read More
Nothing says #momlife—or, more specifically, white middle-class suburban mom life—than a run to the store with your kid on a Thursday morning.
Last Thursday was a very normal Thursday with a very normal shopping run. I wasn’t expecting anything except the norm.
But God showed up in that place. Yes, in my local discount store.
To be clear, I do realize that God is always there. But it seldom feels that way. Intellectually, I know that God is in the... Read More
In 2006 Stanford linguistics professor Arnold Zwicky came up with the phrase “frequency illusion” to describe the phenomenon of how once you learn about or are looking for something, you start seeing it everywhere. (Some people call it the Baader-Meinhof phenomenon.)
Need examples? My family was recently looking for a used car. All of a sudden I started seeing used cars for sale on the side of the road. Or maybe you’re considering getting a tattoo, and now you see... Read More