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Parenting

Parents play different roles at times in most families. Some call it “good cop, bad cop,” which I suppose is just another way of describing “grace and justice.” In my family, the roles were pretty well prescribed. My mother was nearly always the good cop, ready to give and forgive, love and let love. Her […] Read More

I often remark to my church about how fortunate I am to have parents who work in my field. The advantages are obvious: “talking shop” all the time, unlimited advice, understanding of the ins and outs of ministry, even planning vacations around Sundays. But really – advice and shoptalk can come from anywhere. What I […] Read More

Do you think your church is kind on Father’s Day? Most of us would say, yes, of course! Yet, for men who long to be fathers and are not, for any who have a difficult relationship with their biological fathers, or those who have lost their fathers too soon, Sundays like Father’s Day can feel […] Read More

I have noticed a steady increase over the past several years in the number of articles and social media posts about whether and how churches should observe Mother’s Day. This year, I noticed that similar posts about Father’s Day have remained steady – at zero. In case it was just me, I asked around. Only […] Read More

Father’s Day is right around the corner, which begs the question: “Do dads really ever get a day?” While Father’s Day is on every calendar, both print and electronic, most dads I know have to be reminded when their day rolls around every June. In fact, many men will tell you that it doesn’t feel […] Read More

I’ve never met a mother who didn’t want her child to grow up to be a kind and loving person. But because my ministry often takes me to conflict zones, I’ve met many mothers for whom that challenge is unusually daunting. In recent years, I’ve traveled extensively in Israel-Palestine, learning from women actively engaged in […] Read More

To the couple struggling with infertility this Mother’s Day: You are not alone. As another struggler along the journey – someone who lived through nine failed fertility procedures and two failed adoptions in our family’s journey to become parents – I know how much this season of the year brings out ache. And even though […] Read More

Many Baptist churches approach Mother’s Day the way many men approach Valentine’s Day – with fear and trembling. A day intended to honor mothers amid a sacred gathering of worship becomes a day of great anxiety navigating how to do this or if it should be done at all. Pointed questions emerge for the worship […] Read More

What do you do with smartphones during youth group? Really, we could ask this question for all ages in the church, couldn’t we? For Generation Z (born between 1996 to 2014), they’ve always grown up being connected. They have no idea the pain of the screeches, squawks and slowness of the dial-up days. They’ve never […] Read More

How do you feel when your parents migrate to the U.S. and leave you behind? This wasn’t an easy question for students to answer in El Salvador. Seven of us, all Baptists, visited an inner-city high school, Instituto Isaac Newton, located in the heart of San Salvador. We were seeking to better understand this country […] Read More