The Slow Rot of Unresolved Sin

(Posted earlier this week at Worldmag.com)

I spent some time thinking about the sad story of Gov. Mark Sanford of South Carolina. He has been a vocal advocate of family values and faith. He boldly proclaimed his faith in Christ and his responsibility as a Christian public servant. Now his very public affair has damaged and perhaps ruined his marriage, career, and legacy.

I used to be among the first to jump on the dogpile of condemnation for fallen Christian leaders. Now when I read about men like Mark Sanford, Ted Haggard, and John Ensign I am mainly sad. I am sad for their families and friends—and sad for those who were damaged by their sin.

Just As I Am…and Was…and Will Be

I love the morning walks with dog friend Hannah and the iPod devotionals along the way. The most recent song that hit a heart chord was a song called “Just As I Am”. I am not talking about the go to song for altar calls that gave you a small sample of eternity at my hometown church. “One more verse…I know there is someone out there….still waiting….one more verse…”

Dads…Listen to your kids

Every dad leaves a legacy. I have learned a few things through trial and many errors about being a dad who is trying to leave a positive legacy. Previous installments detailed two ways to leave a good legacy.

  1. Love Your Wife
  2. Affirm Your Kids

Today we will examine two more ways to establish a positive legacy. And we are adding a very dangerous twist today. I polled my three sons about my strengths and (gasp) shortcomings as their father. Those knee-buckling results were both sobering and encouraging.

First, the third way to leave a positive legacy as a dad.

Part 2 – Leaving a Legacy

The most recent post began a brief series on leaving a legacy as an earthly father. Every dad leaves a legacy. The only question is what kind. The first step to leaving a positive legacy is to love your wife. For some readers that already has not worked out. That does not mean that you cannot leave a good legacy. There are many ways to redeem the father/child relationship. The second part of leaving a legacy that endures is to be an encouragement to your kids. Paul wrote this simple instruction to the church at Colossae. 

Fathers, do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged.

Father’s Day Thoughts – Leaving a Legacy

Occasionally people will observe our three wonderful sons and ask something like this. “What did you do to parent such great kids?” My response is simple. “I married Joni. The rest is a blur.” There is a little too much truth in that answer. She was and is remarkable. But we did partner in this grand adventure called parenting. Along the way I learned some things mostly by error and stumbling trial. Over the next few days I will share what I have figured out with the disclaimer that I do not claim to be an expert. It is with humility and grateful appreciation to God that He has given me the gift of this family.

Lessons From a Summer Storm

Dog friend Hannah is nodding off while sitting upright. She is exhausted from following me everywhere I have gone during this thunderstorm that has now been going on for 8 hours. If the thunder doesn’t stop soon she may pass out. I have petter’s cramp from trying to comfort her during the storm. I feel like this is my payback for Hannah’s unbridled adulation when I have accomplished great things like coming home or waking up.

Whenever I came to a stop during the storm Hannah would sit next to me. And then she would lean in with most of her weight against me for extra assurance and comfort. I remembered part of the chorus from an old hymn we used to sing when I was a kid in church.  

Preventing Christian Identity Theft

Identity theft is a big problem. It is one of the fastest growing crimes in the United States and recent stats suggest that 10 million cases occurred in the past year. The rise of identity theft has produced a number of companies that protect you from criminals that might steal your good name and credit rating. Somehow one of my card numbers was recently compromised and some low life was merrily buying electronic gear on my tab in Malaysia. Fortunately that was fairly easily resolved since I could prove that I was safely hunkered down in scenic Garland when the purchases were made.