Beating Grain

A thirty-three year old song popped up on my playlist yesterday. In the range of music I listen to, that’s about middle-aged. (I go as far back as Sinatra, who actually came up as I was writing this, and as far forward as last week.) This song’s pretty special, though, so I thought it was worth talking about.

Do You Hear What I Hear?

So goes the question in the famous Christmas song. The better question these days is “do you hear what I say,” because most of us aren’t listening.

Israel had concluded God wasn’t listening, either. The time when they had been welcomed in pharaoh’s court (Gen 47:1–6) was long gone. They had been enslaved by the Egyptians for 400 years and counting.

Four hundred years ago, the first English colony in the New World wasn’t yet a teenager. The Mayflower was still two years away from landing at Plymouth Rock. Don Quixote was thirteen years old, the King James Bible only seven.

Have We Met Before, or is That Just a Lion?

In the large “stack” of email I had waiting for me when we got back from Cambodia, one was from the Fort Worth Zoo. We are frequent zoo goers (although not as frequent as we were before the WCG moved to the other side of the world), so I clicked on the link. It took me to their Holiday Adoption page, where you can “adopt” a hippopotamus for Christmas. It wasn’t the adoption info, though, but the picture on the page that drew my eye. I’m still a bit (a lot) jet-lagged, but it looked very familiar.

Because, as it turns out, I took the picture.

How to Overcome that Hardest Word

I’ve written several times on the subject of apologies and how many of the things that go by that name really aren’t. I’m several weeks late, but I thought it was only right to highlight a real apology, one you can point to and say, “It’s hard, but it can be done.”

In late May, Jordan McNair, a young man on the football team at the University of Maryland, collapsed during a team workout. He died two weeks later.

A couple of months later, ESPN released a story on the culture at UM football. It was, predictably, not complementary–the word “toxic” appeared in the headline.