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Rite of passage parenting: Tattoo-a-thon
May19

Rite of passage parenting: Tattoo-a-thon

Not long ago, I had an interesting night. I spent a couple of hours at a tattoo parlor. I guess you still call them parlors. My grandmother had a parlor, but it looked nothing like this one. I visited a place called Spaded & Jaded in Tulsa. Six tattoo artists wanted to raise money for cancer research, so they decided to hold a 24-hour tattooathon. If you donated $50, you got a free tattoo. The event started on Friday at 5 p.m. and...

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Rite of passage parenting: Time and treasures
May12

Rite of passage parenting: Time and treasures

Time is a beast that will either chase you toward or away from the better things. When I was young, television was just coming into its own. I spent the early part of my life listening to radio. To this day, I would rather listen to the radio than watch television. With the radio you can do other things: build model cars, sand a tabletop or work on a puzzle. But television takes these options away from you. As a young man, I worked as...

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Rite of passage parenting: Vacation time
May05

Rite of passage parenting: Vacation time

I know many of you are thinking of, planning or dreaming of a vacation. No matter what, don’t do your vacations the way we did when I was growing up. Our vacations were more like an endurance test than a time of rest and relaxation. Basically, our family went on vacation whether we enjoyed it or not. I wish I had kept a diary of those trips. I could have turned it into a best-selling book. But I’m not sure if it would have ended up in...

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Rite of passage parenting: We are family
Apr30

Rite of passage parenting: We are family

Family. It is the word that I think best describes what it means to belong to a New Testament church. When Jesus said, “Never will I leave you, Never will I forsake you,” (Heb. 13:5), I believe He meant more than just His personal presence. He also meant He has surrounded us with Himself in other believers. As the Christ in me meets the Christ in you, our family is strengthened. We are not a perfect family; we are as flawed as the day...

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Rite of passage parenting: Say What?
Apr21

Rite of passage parenting: Say What?

My wife and I waited till our 28th anniversary to celebrate our 25th. This December, we’ll have our 40th anniversary, but we probably won’t celebrate it until our 45th. When you think about it, our belated celebrations aren’t too unusual. We’re just acting like women everywhere, who celebrate their 29th birthday for the 10th time. For our 25th anniversary, we’d planned to take a cruise. Due to unforeseen circumstances, we didn’t make...

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Rite of passage parenting: The book is always better
Apr14

Rite of passage parenting: The book is always better

To say I’m an avid reader would be an understatement. During my elementary years, I attended a country school. Every day, Mom would wrap up my egg-with-ketchup sandwich in a newspaper and send me off to catch the school bus. One day, my teacher asked why my mom wrapped my lunch in a newspaper. Not knowing how to respond, I said the first thing that came into my head: “My family is poor, and that’s all we have.” The next day, the...

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