Relationships

Healthy sex—do we know what it is?

Read Time: 5 min.

Sex. It is everywhere, and it is a part of all of us. Having it, not having it, wishing we were having it, never having it done correctly, being addicted to it, even being paid for it. We all are classified by how we identify with one, none, or even multiple genders. It seems to pervade every layer of political discussion and color most interactions to some degree.  Who we are is somewhat defined ...

Is God Okay with Sex?

Read Time: 4 min.

If you’ve gotten the impression that the God Christians follow doesn’t like sex, or that the Bible is a prudish book, is it a surprise to hear that isn’t true? Is it a shock to hear that God celebrates sex? Many Christians themselves are taken aback by the unembarrassed sensuality found in the book called “Song of Solomon,” which is right in the middle of the Bible. As one lover proclaims to his p...

Old Friends, New Friends, and the Lonely Spaces In-Between

Read Time: 4 min.

My family made four cross-country moves before I turned 18. I don’t remember the move from California to Michigan because I was just a toddler. The move from Michigan to Illinois was a mixture of excitement for something new and sadness because I quickly missed my friends of eight years. The next two moves, when I was 11 and 16, turned my already naturally introverted personality into that of a hu...

How to Mentor—Lessons from Eboo Patel

Read Time: 2 min.

Over the past several years, I have had the privilege of grabbing coffee with Eboo Patel. A social entrepreneur based out of Chicago, Eboo is the founder and executive director of one of the fastest growing and most influential non-profits in the world, the Interfaith Youth Core. From time to time, Eboo and I get together to catch up and talk about what is going on in our lives. As we’ve met over ...

Line Leading is Leading Us Astray

Read Time: 3 min.

Life is full of big moments. The moment you find the person you’re going to spend the rest of your life with, the moment you buy your first house (OK, maybe not in this economy), and even the moment you snag your first job. As important as these moments are, nothing means more than a single moment that comes way before any of us are ready: The first time your teacher chooses you to be the line lea...

“Take a chance on me!”

Read Time: 3 min.

A friend of mine who is in the job market just shared a bit of frustration with me: almost every position that is advertised, he said, is requiring 3-5 years of experience. My friend looked me in the eye and asked, point blank with a bit of despair, “how am I supposed to get any experience if I can’t get hired in the first place?” A good question. My friend’s experience brought back my own memorie...

Can the Bible Teach Us Leadership Skills?

Read Time: 4 min.

A lot of what Christianity has to say about leadership can be summed up pretty well in one story about Jesus with his followers: A dispute also arose among them, as to which of them was to be regarded as the greatest. And he said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them, and those in authority over them are called benefactors. But not so with you. Rather, let the greatest am...

Serving Means Sitting

Read Time: 4 min.

Let’s play a game of word association. When I say “SERVING,” what do you think of? Perhaps the waiter who forgot your side of Sriracha. Someone employed as a member of the armed services. Painting someone’s house. Delivering a meal to a shut-in. Organizing a car-wash for charity. We tend to relate serving with standing up, springing into action, and getting things done. And rightly so. Serving req...

Serving

Read Time: 3 min.

You hear a lot about service these days. Kids have service projects at school or in Scouts. People volunteer for food pantries or soup kitchens over the holidays. Social media has posts about “giving back” or “paying it forward.” But service goes way beyond that. For some people, it becomes a lifestyle. That’s what Jesus called us to—not just to do “projects,” but to spend ourselves in caring for ...

A Heart for Service

Read Time: 3 min.

Recently, I had a flood of sudden memories about a compliment that so many people gave me in my early life—they told me I had a heart for service. A thrill of excitement and acknowledgment would run through me every year or so when someone would say this. It meant people were watching me, were taking stock of the way I do things, and they had decided that I had a gift. A God-given gift. A gift for...

In This Sandwich, a Lesson.

Read Time: 3 min.

Children are to be seen, and not to be heard. It’s the phrase that defined the parenting philosophies of multiple generations of mothers and fathers. Simply put, children were expected to be as close to invisible as humanly possible. It didn’t mean that children were expected to simply be quiet; we were expected to be undemanding, passive, and malleable. We were the property of our parents, and in...

Learning to Listen, Listening to Learn

Read Time: 4 min.

“Huh?” “What did you say?” “What?” When we want to make fun of our dad, these are the words that we use. While it may not be funny that my father is hard of hearing, it is pretty humorous that sometimes when my mom and dad are talking, it’s a constant back-and-forth of these words. “Huh?” “What?” “I didn’t catch that.” And it’s not that my father is the only one with a problem. Ask my wife and she...