When the Game is Stacked Against You. Part 2

[It will help to have read the post “When the Game is Stacked Against You” before reading this post.] It’s probably happened to you. You are playing a game where another player gets all the good cards. Every time it looks like you’ve got a little chance to get back in the game, that player …

When the Game is Stacked Against You

I had been looking forward to this game night for days. A friend and I were pulling out the classic Agricola game for a couple of hours of great fun. At the beginning of the game, you are dealt a number of cards, each of which will give you a particular ability or benefit or …

Crimes of Desperation

One of the more fascinating prayers recorded in the Bible is voiced by a man named Agur, whose prayer is one of the “Proverbs.” He writes: “Two things I ask of you, Lord; do not refuse me before I die: Keep falsehood and lies far from me; give me neither poverty nor riches, but give …

The Killer Deal

I live in Huntsville, Alabama, in a $9,000 home on a decent-size corner lot in a simple little neighborhood. I would guess that it takes me almost an hour to mow my lawn. Often, neighbors will stop by my house and offer to do some work. I remember one particular day not long after I …

Dear Police Officer

Dear Police Officer, My name is Roger. I am a white 54-year old living with my wife, Joy, in Huntsville, AL. I am a pastor, and I sell stuff online. I have four children and seven grandchildren. A few months back, I was pulled over by a police officer. He gave me a ticket for …

Dreaming of the Perfect Christmas

My 2013 Christmas season was definitely not perfect. We got a really late start putting up the Christmas tree and decorations. We traveled hundreds of miles and slept in eight different beds. On the road, it was hard to fix or find “good” food, and I put on a few extra pounds. My brother, Bruce, …

My Tomatoes

At the prodding of a friend, we decided to build a raised bed garden in our side yard. I really didn’t have to be prodded much, since I love fresh garden vegetables, especially tomatoes. This love goes back to summers of my childhood spend on my grandparent’s farm in Murfreesboro, TN, where sliced garden tomatoes …

The Ethiopian Orphan’s Parting Words

Tired walkers, street vendors, goats, and uneven concrete flashed outside the windows of our taxi as it darted and bounced through the streets of Ethiopia’s capital city, Addis Ababa.  As the driver slowed to find the exact address of the orphanage, I wondered what to expect.   What would children, robbed by AIDS of their …

Who Needs Another Blog Post?

What?  Someone else just launched a blog?  Make that blog number 164,586,782.  Someone just published a book?  Great!  Now, there are ONLY 138,461,822 books in the world.  Come on?  Do we really need someone else writing a book?  Do we really need someone else launching a blog (he asks in a blog post!)? Hasn’t everything …

Perry Mason, Love, and the Missing Car Keys

We are all wannabe detectives, which is, I think, part of the fascination with detective shows down through the years (Perry Mason, Hawaii 5-0, Dragnet, NCIS, CSI,)  The show presents us with several possible suspects, and we look for “clues” to determine who committed the crime. The reality is that we are hard-wired to do …