4 Opposites Reveal Wisdom

OK, it’s a great scene: Indiana Jones and his dad have reached the cave where they believe the Holy Grail has been hidden. But, to get to the treasure Indy has to pass some tests. As he approaches the first test, he remembers the words of warning “Only the penitent man will pass.” As he approaches the test, he says that the penitent man kneels before God, and he kneels at the…

What Seems Right IS Wrong!

“How can it be wrong when it feels so right?” Probably one of the most overused lines in the history of mankind right before someone does something really stupid! Yeah, I know, I’ve said it myself! So, why is it we humans get ourselves into messes like this? Simple, we let our heart be our guide! But, you say, that’s what they told me I was supposed to do, follow my heart!…

When to Speak; When to Listen

An ancient Roman writer once said, “I have often regretted my speech, never my silence.” I confess that has been a hard lesson for me, personally. Once, when someone asked me “Why do you talk so much?” I responded, “Because the sound of my voice comforts me!” As a big smile came on both our faces, it was clear he got my point. We humans are enamored with our own voice, and…

He Will Swallow Up Death Forever

It’s just not news. Seriously, you have to try and not notice that the message of God since He confronted our first parents in the Garden after their deadly choice was that He was going to fix what we had forfeited by our short sighted thinking. God has always planned to undo the “knots” we tied at the Fall. This consistent message is key to see during our “bright sadness” of Great…

This is The Purpose for the Whole Earth

I’m not a big fan of the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche. But I do like this quote of his: “He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how.” Spend any time with my writings and you’ll see me say this and more often about being Orthodox on Purpose. Having a purpose transforms a daily life from drudgery to meaning. And when a purpose is missing, well, life lives…

Time to Build an Altar

At the very heart of the timeless Christian faith is the Eucharist. And you’ve heard me say many times before that the word “Eucharist” has its root in the Greek word for “thank you.” The very center of what it means to be a Christian isn’t some cultural habit “I’m Christian because I was born in a Christian family.” It isn’t in some political allegiance like insisting we are a “Christian” nation.…

Wisdom! Let us Attend!

My grandmother used to confuse me when she’d comment about a particular friend of my grandfather’s. She’d look at the man as he was driving away from their home after a visit and say “He’s a smart boy but he ain’t got no horse sense.” “Horse sense?” I’d hear that and wonder what in heaven’s name that could mean. It was years later I learned that this was a way of saying that…

Learning to Choose

I have a friend who is a biologist and she is also an atheist. She’s an atheist because she’s convinced there is no such thing as “free will.” And she believes this because of her science. To her, every choice we think we make is actually just certain chemical reactions to different stimuli. I know, sad, isn’t it. And yet, I know some theologians who would agree with her about “free will.”…

The 3-Fold Path to Wisdom

What’s the best way to improve society? Change the person or change the society? There was a day in America when the common understanding was to change the person and society would improve, but nowadays it seems that many think that fighting to change society means addressing society’s faults rather than the faults in the persons in that society. In fact, character development USE to be one of the primary goals and…

He IS Not Ashamed to Call You Brethren!

“You can pick your friends, but you’re stuck with your relatives.” That’s an old saying around these parts and it reflects a reality that sometimes your family can embarrass you. Truth be told I actually try to embarrass my daughters when we are in public. I’ll dance or sing out loud and my oldest will say, “Daddy, stop. You’re embarrassing me!” Mission accomplished! But seriously, there is something to be said about…