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Rite of passage: Shall We Dance?
Jun19

Rite of passage: Shall We Dance?

Baptists are funny people. We are known for loving Jesus and the Bible as much as we hate sin. And we are passionate about reaching others with the Good News. But we are also odd ducks; we have the hardest time agreeing on what constitutes a sin. You might not know this, but you can get a fire going by rubbing two Baptists together. This sin issue was brought to my attention again this week. I grew up in a Baptist church that taught...

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Rite of passage: Exit strategy
Jun12

Rite of passage: Exit strategy

Today, I am not writing to you; I am writing to myself. If you want, you can read along. I don’t usually write to myself, but maybe I need to do it more often. I don’t know why I am sharing this. Maybe one of you is in the same place I am and will find comfort in having met another struggler. In a few weeks, I will hand over the reins of the ministry I started 25 years ago. I decided to exit on Aug. 9, 2018, five years to the day I...

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Rite of passage: ‘What?!’
Jun05

Rite of passage: ‘What?!’

I heard a story the other day that left me scratching my head. Anybody who has flown a lot will have a story or two about going through airport security. When I started taking groups internationally, security was much more relaxed. You and your family, including your crazy Uncle Charlie who carries his pet rooster everywhere, were allowed to go back to your departure gate. When you returned, the same crowd that saw you off was usually...

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Rite of passage: The joy of simplicity
May29

Rite of passage: The joy of simplicity

In the simplicity of life, we find our greatest joy. This was never truer than last weekend. As I’ve written, I built a swing set for Titus the Honorable and Cohen the Goodhearted not long ago. The problem is that they never want to go home. They love swinging, climbing and playing on our modest swing set. So their dad decided he was going to build them one in their own backyard. He worked for weeks, looking at ideas and plans. Then...

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Rite of passage: Swing shift
May22

Rite of passage: Swing shift

Grammy has been talking to me about putting up a swing set in our backyard.  She believes Titus the Honorable and Cohen the Goodhearted are at the age where a swing set will be a good babysitter—I mean investment. Night after night, she showed me sales and pictures of different types of swing sets: wooden ones bigger than our house and small metal ones like the one I used to swing on as a boy. She happened upon one she thought would...

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Rite of passage: Heaven according to ‘Dr. Titus’
May15

Rite of passage: Heaven according to ‘Dr. Titus’

The other night, 4-year-old Titus the Honorable and I were sitting on the floor playing with some toys. We were enjoying the time together in silence when Titus spoke up and said, “Poppy, you know when you die, you will go to heaven.” He wasn’t asking a question but stating a fact. I wasn’t sure why he was telling me this. Did he want to reassure me because he thinks I am knocking on death’s door? Not too long ago, one of his...

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