About the Author
I stay up later than I should — an inherited trait. Thanks, Dad.
I dance with my children in the kitchen.
I’m pretty sure I hit a home run in Little League. But I was more excited about the post-game snow cones.
Speaking of leagues, I married way out of mine.
I miss Texas. Of course, the food and music and joie de vivre in Louisiana really help to soften the blow.
I went to speech therapy as a kid. Still can’t say the word “rural.”
I pastor an absolutely wonderful congregation, a gathering of saints and sinners who practice grace and point toward divine beauty while being Church to one another.
I coach a youth soccer team, even though I never played the game as a kid.
I worry too much about too many things.
I have a front row seat to share in the lives of 3 young sons — each remarkably unique and full of wonder.
I went to school. East Texas Baptist University. George W. Truett Seminary. Doctor of Ministry in Christian Spirituality at Columbia Theological Seminary.
I still feel like I’m just scratching the surface of what there is to know about faith and life.
I play guitar, but not because I’m good at it. Just seems that the stories inside us sound better when told to music.
I started this blog as a way of marking a few trails along the wide and winding path we all share in the world. The title, Bruised Benediction, comes from my favorite story of Jacob in the Hebrew Scriptures. Jacob was something of a con man. He made use of people in order to get what he wanted out of life. One night Jacob slept on the bank of the Jabbok River, tossing and turning from something more real than any dream he’d ever had. He fought with an opponent he couldn’t con. No one knows who the adversary really was. Maybe an angel — that’s what the scripture suggests. Maybe it was Jacob’s own conscience. Perhaps his memories or the fear of his upcoming reunion with his brother, Esau. But whatever name we call the opponent, in our deeper understanding, we know that Jacob wrestled with God that night.
Just before dawn, while he was worn-out and weak and defeated, the con man asked the Lord to bless him. And graciously God did. But not without injury. Jacob left the riverbank limping from the fray.
In liturgical tradition, the benediction is the last thing the priest or pastor says. It means “good word.” A benediction is a blessing… a particular kind of blessing. It is a blessing for anyone going from one place to another. And I suppose that means a benediction is for all of us. And all of us, like Jacob, make that journey limping along, rubbing the bruise of divine affection.