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the end of days

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I’m facing a deadline. It reminds me of the Mayan calendar thing from a few years ago; the world ends at the new year. On January 1, 2015, for the first time in 10 years I will not be a full-time youthworker. In fact, for the first time in nearly 20 years I won’t have

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pot of gold.

So I’m taking an online writing class. We (the Youthworker Circuit) signed me up for it, hoping to find a couple of nuggets for expanding our invisible empire of Wesleyanism. It may yet yield something; unfortunately it begins with addressing people to whom it had not yet occurred to write anything, ever. So there’s some

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oh, there I am.

Ummmmmmmmmmmmm. Sorry about that, if you were following along closely. I took an unscheduled leave of absence from blogging at the end of last spring. I encountered a bit of life change that threw me for a while. I’m re-engaging social media under some new practices. I’ll probably eventually begin to unpack some of my

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flag man ahead

When we moved to the small north Georgia town of Ringgold 5 years ago, we were surprised to discover what a throwback community it was. We’ve lived in and are both from small towns, but the uniqueness of a town where everybody still seemed to know everybody was striking. Other quirks appeared over the years.

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this doesn’t matter a bit.

Except that it was amusing. Both of my boys are delightful goons, but very difficult to wake up in the morning. As a result, there is no one method of waking them that works for any length of time. A couple of weeks is about all you’ll enjoy out of any particular success. So a

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winding down

You know, once all the wheels have come off of the bus the ride isn’t nearly as scary anymore. Slows right down. I had to break dress code a week ago. As my friend Jake & I were finishing our hike on Big Frog, I stepped off of the edge of the trail and rolled

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up Big Frog

It’s been two weeks since my last post and this one will technically be out of order with the one that follows it in the next couple of days. During this whole experience I’ve really re-engaged the person of Jesus in a new way. It began, I think, with a writing assignment. A recent project

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the cumulative effect

I used to be a pretty avid kayaker until an underwater concussion knocked the interest out of me. I’d arrive at church with my boat in the back of my truck and take off for the Ocoee right after services most Sundays. At least once a year we’d go camping and paddling 2 or 3

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I think Jesus did less miracles when it was humid.

“Seriously guys, can we suffer the little children to get out of my personal space box for a minute? And can we get a fan in here?” I forgot to post this photo from the event I attended with my youth last weekend. It’s the princess bed I found my amused, greasy self retiring to

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My entire adult life I’ve lived in relationship with feeling dirty in degrees. A humid rainy day with too much running around results in your hair getting a little plastered and a little more sweat than you’re used to in mild weather. Or an unexpected amount of time outside in the heat leaves your shirt

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b & w kit

don’t forget to separate your colors

Pro tip: if you’re going to wear the same thing for an extended period of time, turn down all offers to jump on a trampoline on Day 2. Today’s point of awakening was that I’ve never really considered what goes on inside the washing machine. I awoke to discover that my shirts had crossed a

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the emperor’s new clothes

I thought I’d go ahead and lay out my ground rules for interacting with life for the next few weeks. Since I started this direction in late January, I’ve essentially been auditioning my clothes for a long haul run. And in that very thought process I’ve hit upon one of a thousand ways that I

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over the waterfall

Tonight I’m going to be speaking in my church’s Ash Wednesday service, partly because I’m a staff person usually active in church calendar services, but also partly just to give them a heads-up about the next 47 days of their youthworker’s appearance. I’ve had a lot of conversations coming to this point about how to

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fasting in need

I’ve always struggled with Lent. Here I could rattle off a dozen meaningless practices of Lenten fasts to make a point and probably even coat them in enough amusing and engaging sarcasm that I’d distract you from the fact that I’ve done them all myself. Sure, I’ve tried to lose weight during Lent. Who hasn’t?

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the confession of strangers

So I’m on my way back to Chattanooga from Dallas. The thing about the Chattanooga airport is that it’s awesome to fly out from but there’s genuine difficulty in returning to it. On the way out, you get dropped off at one of two entry doors, wave to the security guard and await your flight.

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crafty, and just my type.

So my mother-in-law sends a cryptic email to all of us kids this year, indicating that she’d like for us each to make her something from our individual talents. She went on more specifically, naming the actual talent-based gift that she would like to receive. In my case, she heralded my talent as a writer

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my son, the portrait artist

I threw him under the bus yesterday; only fair to give him some props. The pic is of Grey (6) at the 2011 Wild Goose Festival doing a little pre-breakfast drawing while Penner (4) does his impression of a forlorn old man who has realized he’s out of coffee. I’m returning to the Wild Goose

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my son, the tumultuous thug

Grey’s extracurricular schedule for the past week and a half: In the hallway, punch a child in the arm. In after-school care, show a boy your penis. In the bathroom, free-climb a urinal. Make sure to step in it while you flush it. In class, throw somebody’s something across the room. Twice. In get-your-backpack-to-leave-for-the-day line,

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death on two wheels

I hate it when I have to get rid of a motorcycle. I’ve never had what you’d ordinarily think of as a “nice” motorcycle, but I’ve always loved whatever bike I had at any given time. When you ride motorcycles that are 15 years old or more you generally eventually lose them to mounting mechanical

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how to make cake

Grey (6) had an appointment at the doctor today so Penner (4) and I had the house to ourselves. Penner finds an odd freedom in his older brother not being around and it manifests itself in different ways. Today he came to my desk and said, “What’s something we can do together, daddy?” I explained

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the rest of the story

Late last night I posted a response to a out-of-full-context quote in my Twitter feed. This morning I heard from my friend and, after having taken his 140 characters to task, felt it would be fair blogging practice to pass along the context. The friend I mentioned is Dave Trout, the host of an hour-long

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consuming it for jeebus

I’m all bent out of shape, as per usual. I’m going to quote some things that I don’t fully understand and of which I don’t wholly know the context, so I’ll be leaving out some names and places. A guy I met through a syndicated radio show/podcast who I like to think is becoming a

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the new me

Hey, welcome to the new me. I’d know it for a while. My blog has been, since its inception, attached to my band’s website. At the time, the band was the only iron I had in the fire apart from my full-time ministry position at a local church here in Ringgold, GA. It’s become more

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Mound of Clothes

the odd relationship of help

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Everything in American culture is available on a consumer basis. You can do almost anything of which you can conceive at virtually any hour, any day of the week. Somewhere. Probably even online. Except. If you want to HELP, you can’t do that on your own terms. Help isn’t open 24/7 and it doesn’t offer

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Screen shot 2011-06-23 at 1.23.09 AM

slapping babies

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This picture is of the house across the street from where I worked clearing trees with one of my church families today. It’s a traditional 2-story Cape Cod, except that the storm converted it into a cozy master-on-main with an open floor plan. And a completely vanished first floor. What you see there in shadow

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