Friday, June 29, 2012

The Cheap Vanishing Trick

I’ve been involved in the online dating scene for nearly three years now, and there are some aspects of the system that I will never get used to — like the vanishing trick.

It happened to me again, about a month ago.

I was contacted by a guy on a dating site (not Marry Well). He said he was impressed with my profile, and I after reading through his, I was rather impressed as well. We corresponded almost daily for a few weeks. Then — he failed to respond to a message. I could see the message had been read. I waited two weeks. Then I wrote again, saying I assumed he had decided to move on. Again, the message was read. Again, I got no response.

Poof...

Visit Marry Well to read more.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Rules, Virtue, and Crash-Barriers

The more I read N.T. Wright, the more I enjoy him. Consider this excerpt from After You Believe, taken out of the chapter titled "Three Virtues, Nine Varieties of Fruit, and One Body."

Another illustration may help -- and may show that this is not a matter of playing rules and virtue off against each other, but of seeing the former within the larger framework of the latter. When the local authorities build roads for cars to travel long distances -- highways, motorways, call them what you will -- they naturally intend that people should drive along these roads in full control of their cars. Ideally, nobody will ever stray from their side of the road into the path of traffic coming in the other direction. But because from time to time people have been known to lose concentration, to fall asleep at the wheel, to be distracted by a pet dog in the back seat, or whatever -- and because sometimes a puncture or other mechanical failure may cause a car to behave erratically, no matter what the driver is doing -- the wise highway builders construct a central barrier so that any car drifting toward the oncoming traffic will be stopped in its tracks. Better to bounce back among cars going the same direction than lurch into a head-on collision. Likewise, they build a "rumble strip" at the outer edge of the highway, short of any fence or ditch, which makes a loud noise if your wheels touch it, to keep drivers from running off the road. Those responsible for building roads are not saying, "There you are; there's a nice crash-barrier. Bounce off that and you'll be all right." They're saying, "You are supposed to drive down the road without touching the barriers. But if something goes wrong, you may need to know that the barrier is there."

Mmm...love it.

Grow Up and Get Real

Last week Jon Acuff’s Stuff Christians Like blog published a guest entry by Christian comedian John Crist titled “Stuff (Single) Christian (Girls) Like: Getting Upset With Guys For Not Acting Like Real Men.” I appreciated Crist’s humorous and balanced approach to the common debate. His conclusion summed up the issue well:

Here’s the thing. Single men and women are both living in a fantasyland. Guys like to play video games and fantasy sports because it makes us feel like real men, like we’re accomplishing something greater than our abilities. There is no game called Fantasy Wendy’s Manage...because we can go make that a reality tomorrow...

Visit Marry Well to read more.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Love of Authority or Authority of Love?

The topic of submission is always tricky at best. There are so many definitions of the term, so many ways of interpreting the pertinent scriptural passages, and so many possible applications of the relevant teachings. And then, on top of interpretive difficulties, we have social and cultural sensibilities to contend with.

It’s not an easy topic.

Still, many conservative evangelicals acknowledge some sort of role distinction between men and women in the marriage relationship. Women are supposed to respect their husbands. Men are supposed to love their wives.

Most of these conservative Christians acknowledge that men are given special authority in the marriage relationship. But what is this authority? And why should women respond to it?

Visit Marry Well to read more.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Real Love and Wild Horses

I heard this song for the first time tonight. Someone I know mentioned it, so I looked it up. I'm glad I did.





Tuesday, June 19, 2012

A Glimpse: Father's Day Pies

On Saturday, the ladies in my family made 26 pies. 26. We were organizing a Father's Day Pie Giveaway for Sunday morning. Several ladies from church signed up to bring pies. We counted the dads, totaled the promised pies, and then baked up the difference. This year, the difference was about 26.

We made four apple...

The Worst Marriage Advice Ever

Woman’s Day recently published some of the worst marriage advice ever in Stephanie Emma Pfeffer’s ”9 Marriage Problems That Are Actually Good for Your Relationship.” Consider how Pfeffer’s tips line up with biblical wisdom in the area of marital fidelity.

Pfeffer writes it’s good for your marriage when:

You both fantasize about other people. “Fantasies are an ancient aphrodisiac,” says Iris Krasnow, author of The Secret Lives of Wives: Women Share What It Really Takes to Stay Married. “A vivid imagination allows you to open up to your partner physically and emotionally.” So thinking about a sexy neighbor, for example, can improve your marriage—as long as those racy visions stay in your mind.

Scripture teaches:

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. (Philippians 4:8 ESV)

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Tuesday, June 12, 2012

A Glimpse: Unpacking

We are finally unpacking some of our decorative items. With all the moving in recent years, we've had to get rid of almost everything except those items with sentimental value. The result is a quirky, mildly tacky, eclectic mix of odds and ends. I'm finally feeling at home in my house.

Here's a glimpse of our kitchen.

Small-Town Style Social Networking

Last month First Thoughts published Matthew Schmitz’ “A Small-Town Defense of Facebook.” Though Schmitz focuses on Zuckerberg’s social networking behemoth, some of what he says applies to smaller online communities — like Marry Well. Check out this excerpt:

Of course, any tool can be harmful if not used in virtuous moderation, but I don’t think there anything particularly vicious about sharing links and photos with your friends. The temptation to “constant self-fashioning” is no more acute here than in, say, dressing. Sure, both forms of self-presentation can tempt us to vanity and immodesty, but the solution is prudence and care—not necessarily wholly abjuring fashion or closing one’s Facebook account...

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Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Self-Control: The Forgotten Fruit

Yesterday, Marry Well published an excerpt of Paul Tripp’s recent discussion on maturity. The quoted passage concludes: "Biblical maturity is never just about what you know but always about how grace has employed what you have come to know to transform the way you live."

Tripp seems to be getting at the scriptural idea of good fruit.

So, every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the diseased tree bears bad fruit. A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a diseased tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus you will recognize them by their fruits. (Matthew 7:18-20 ESV)

As we seek to grow in maturity, and as we assess the maturity of potential mates — what fruits should we be looking for? ... N.T. Wright explores the concept of spiritual fruit at length in his After You Believe: Why Christian Character Matters.

Visit Marry Well to read more.

Monday, June 4, 2012

A Writer's Inspiration: Harriet Beecher Stowe


I read Chapter 11 of Scot McKnight's One.Life: Jesus Calls, We Follow last week. In that chapter, titled "Vocation.Life," McKnight turns his attention to Harriet Beecher Stowe.

As a writer, I found McKnight's discussion extremely refreshing and inspiring. For me, writing has not been lucrative. Meaningful -- yes. But in the eyes of those steeped in our money-centered culture, I think I seem to be only wasting my time.

McKnight's words were just the encouragement I needed last week. I had to share. It's long, but very worth reading. Literary experts may quibble about the merit of Stowe's works, but there is little question that she lived out her faith through her pen.

A Glimpse: Wedding Season

I attended my third wedding of the year this weekend. It was beautiful.