The Prize That Never Goes out of Style

  Did you hear? Cracker Jack will no longer bury prizes in their snack boxes. Instead, consumers will find a digital code that will link to a “baseball-inspired mobile digital experience.” The famous sailor boy mascot and his dog, Bingo, will also get an update. The public reaction was swift and brutal....

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Begging off the Banquet

  Last week, I invited my Facebook friends to list excuses they’ve heard to blow off church.  I received over 40 replies! There were the predictable excuses such as church is boring, it’s full of hypocrites, I don’t like the preacher’s sermons (that one really hurts, especially when it comes from your wife)....

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Do You Need a Remodel?

  It’s that time of the year in Texas again – storm season! It’s the time when Yankee transplants nervously scan inky skies and demand to know why we don’t have basements down here, while the natives dash outside, whooping and hollering, to shoot video of funnel clouds. We’ve been in our house for over seven years...

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The Word is Out

  The word is out: I have been diagnosed with prostate cancer. I found out just before the holidays last year. I didn’t immediately share it with the social media world for several reasons. For one, I’m a pretty private person who’s not big on airing angsty posts on Facebook....

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Sheilaism: Not the Easter faith

  In their 1985 book, Habits of the Heart, Robert Bellah and Richard Madsen referenced a nurse they code-named Sheila Larson who adhered to a faith she herself dubbed “Sheilaism.” The authors were chronicling the gradual shift of American religion from being corporate and public to privatized and inwardly-focused. To illustrate this change, they quoted Sheila: “I believe...

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Easter Brings Death

  Easter Sunday 2016 is in the books, and it’s a safe bet that if you attended church, you heard a message on resurrection. The most important day on the Christian calendar is about an empty tomb, a risen Savior and new life. But Easter also brings death. As the...

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4 Amazing Benefits of the Cross

  The Cross of Jesus Christ. From its beginnings, the Cross has exemplified Christianity. Once an instrument of terror, the Cross is now a cherished symbol in many parts of the world. It tops our churches, hangs on our walls and dangles from people’s necks.   How did that happen? What was the process that turned the Cross from a sign of...

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The State is not the Kingdom

  Judging from social media posts during this particularly raucous political season, I think many people will resonate with this quote from Robert Byrne: “Democracy is being allowed to vote for the candidate you dislike least.” A lot of folks are announcing that they may sit out the presidential election...

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6 Songs for Lent

  Music has always been a potent force. Trumpets tumbled the walls of Jericho and David’s harp soothed the vexed King Saul. Scripture encourages us to “Sing to Him, sing praises to Him; tell of all His wonderful acts” (Psalm 105:2). Music has lost none of its effectiveness since biblical times. Research has shown...

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Truth Pursuit

  I recently heard a preacher comment, “Most of us wake up on a pursuit to happiness. What we really should be waking up to is a pursuit of truth.” That really struck me. Psalm 51:6 states that God “desires truth in the inward parts.” The literal translation of “inward parts” is...

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