God or the Snake?

“She made me do it.” This was the “excuse of my daughter when I asked her why she hit her sister! Wow, that’s a lot of power to give to someone else! It seems we humans have a particular gift for shifting the blame to someone else when we make mistakes. We also seem to be particularly good at excusing or justifying our choices even when those choices turn out badly!  …

You Are a Living Breath of God

Phillip James Bailey, an English poet of the late 19th century, once said: “Let each man think himself an act of God; his mind a thought; his life, a breath of God; and let each try, by great thoughts and good deeds to show the most of heaven he hath in him.” One of the amazing revelations of the Orthodox Christian Faith is the high dignity humanity has in this wondrous creation.…

Made FOR Him to be LIKE Him

Shakespeare’s Hamlet has a character named Polonius and Shakespeare has him utter those now famous words “For the apparel oft proclaims the man.” And then, of course, there’s the famous business advice “Dress for the job you want, not the job you have!” All this focus on apparel makes one wonder if men are unaware of their true selves. And that, dear one, is seen in the fervent scramble of humanity to…

And The Evening and The Morning…

“To everything, turn, turn, turn. There is a season, turn, turn, turn. And a time to every purpose under heaven.” The Byrds lyrics were taken, of course, from the Book of Ecclesiastes in the First Testament. It is the gift of time, granted to us by God, where our lives play out. It is also a gift of God that even our mistakes and sins have a finality so that we do…

The Power of Logos

“Make your words sweet. After all, you may have to eat them!” Great advice, and perfect for one who is embarking on a spiritual journey of disciplined and purposeful faith. You see, our words are icons of our hearts. That’s why paying attention to our words is part of any spiritual discipline to become the master of your passions rather than the slave of your emotions, your fears, and your desires. Watch…

These Are The Things You SHALL Do

I love the look on my daughter’s face when I tell her “You can do what you want to do AFTER you do what you have to do.” Training a child (or, for that matter me!) to delay gratification is one of the most important life lessons any parent can give a child. This basic ability of the mature pays off life dividends in both practical and spiritual ways. If I would…

Perverting the Nation

I really don’t know where it came from, but since I can remember, there were two great interests in my mind – politics and religion. Strange, since my traditional Southern upbringing discouraged the mixing of the two realms of human endeavor. But there it was, a passionate interest in both, so much so that there was a time in my life where I had to choose whether to become a politician or a…

“Clean Monday” Here We Come!

I was sitting right next to it! And then it went off! And I nearly jumped out of my skin. It was an alarm that let you know when someone was “breaking into the house.” I didn’t realize I was that close when they were going to test it and it scared me to death. But I guess that’s what an alarm is supposed to do: get your attention. Nowadays, though, most…

Fallen Angels

Hollywood loves getting it wrong. The more I see of movies about angels or demons or the “supernatural” the more I see just why serious theological wisdom is absolutely vital to clear thinking and wise living. It seems every time a movie about these subjects comes out everything is flat and mundane and lacking any mystery at all. Hell and heaven are created in the image of man instead of the much…

Truly Human

They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, and I can really see that. The other day my daughter had the same reaction and facial expression I have when I’m frustrated. The moment made me smile, then cringe, then pray “Lord, help me be a better example to my children!” The whole of the Christian life is all about imitation. If we can internalize imitating Christ in all things, we become…