I have made many new friends through my one year association with the good folks at Crosswalk.com. I suspect that the cool redesign of the website will cause a few more to stumble into my cyberspace and ask the question that nearly everyone asks.
“Who the heck is Dave Burchett?”
Because time is precious I have put together a linked list of the most popular articles I have written out of the over 300 times I have strode to the blog batter’s box and tried to connect with you, the reader.
These are the ten most read blogs that I have posted with a brief excerpt from each one. Sample one or two or ten by clicking on the title and see if this is a spot that you will want to revisit. I hope it is. But most of all I hope you find grace and joy as you follow Jesus today.
I think I am going to start posting a warning label so the Spiritual Hall Monitors will be alerted to the fact that my blog may contain humor or, according to some, attempted humor. With this warning they can avoid encountering humor, satire, and sarcasm that might trigger an allergic reaction for the sullen saints.
Warning: The following post may contain humor. This blog was produced in a program where irony and satire are processed. May contain sarcasm fragments.
I think that singer Chris Rice may understand my plan to post the humor/satire warning.
I have struggled for years with the concept that God somehow intervenes in athletic events. I have seen the post game interviews where athletes thank God for helping them make the big play or for helping their team win. And I wonder if God really chooses to get involved with sporting event outcomes. Does He sovereignly evaluate the two teams and inventory the number of Christians on the home team versus the visiting team? Is it quantity or spiritual maturity that determines the eventual outcome? Would God bless a team with 20 nominal Christians or the one with 10 really committed believers?
Earl Wilson once said that “one way to get high blood pressure is to go mountain climbing over molehills”. If the following story were Jeopardy categories it would go something like this…
“Let’s go with ridiculous church and state objections for $50, Alex.”
And then you would follow up with this category.
“I’ll take spectacular over reactions for $100, Alex.”
When I used to visit my family in Kentucky I remember the saying they used when someone thought a little differently.“That boy ain’t right!”, they would note with a smile and shake of the head.
That is how I feel today after my “ain’t right” brain somehow linked two widely disparate stories. Story number one was found in The Week Magazine and told about a growing number of multimillionaires who are leaving their money to themselves in the hope they will someday be brought back to life. The Wall Street Journal had originally reported that these very future investors are having themselves cryogenically frozen with the hope that medical advances will allow them to be revived.
The box office run of End of the Spear is likely drawing to a close. The backlash from a number of Christian blogs, publications, and from many pulpits accomplished its goal. Estimates are that the controversy cut the box office return by one-half to two-thirds. I wish congratulations were in order. But I am simply burdened and discouraged by our choice of battles in the evangelical community.
I was taught to “dog” people about their faith. But maybe "ministry with mutts" would be more effective to reach others with the message of the gospel. So I am thinking about starting a new seminary with man’s best friends as the instructors and role models for the students. My inspiration for this “hounds-on” approach to ministry training came from an article in American Way Magazine. The story was about dog training programs that have been implemented into prisons across America.
I have been reading with my usual mix of amusement, sadness, and disbelief the growing debate over the movie End of the Spear. Some in the Christian community have decided to grab the pitchforks, light the torches, and storm the gates of Every Tribe Entertainment, the production company behind the movie. In case you have been a cloistered monk until today I will give you a bit of background.
When I became aware that word of my Evangelical Christianity was out I went to the secret underground bunker where we all meet to plan how to advance our agenda.
"I have been Valerie Plumed!" I told the group.
"They know?", they asked.
"I'm afraid so. Should I come clean?"
They looked horrified. "You mean tell them your agenda?"
"Yes," I said boldly. "I am going to lay out my entire agenda so there will be no doubt."
So here it is. I certainly don't speak for all Evangelical Christians but I think I just might represent a number of them. Rosie, I am coming clean. Here is what I believe and my entire agenda.
One of the things that really struck me from the movie "End of the Spear" was that in the Waodani language, there is no word for forgiveness. The concept was so foreign to that culture that no word had ever been coined. In our Christian culture we have the word but we too often lack the ability to apply it. One of the joys of writing these daily ramblings is hearing from readers who are blessed or challenged by something I have written. Occasionally someone takes time out of their busy schedule to tell me I am an idiot. Isn't it a waste of time to tell an idiot that he is an idiot? How can an idiot comprehend that? But I digress. The communications that are really hard for me are the ones from people who have been wounded by other people in the church or by church leaders. Those break my heart and such messages arrive far too often. Today was such a day.
Most of life's sentences are blissfully mundane. I can't find my keys. Take out the garbage. Please feed the dog. I can't find my keys. ADD readers will relate to that string of comments. But sometimes a single sentence will change your life. My bride of nearly thirty years dropped one of those sentences on me earlier this week.
"My spot was cancerous."
After an optimistic initial briefing from the surgeon days earlier we were not prepared for the harsh reality of the pathology report. The tumor is still small but the type of cancer is aggressive. The prognosis is optimistic but the journey will be hard. Yesterday I quoted that noted scholar and philosopher Mike Tyson who said, "Everyone has a game plan until they get hit in the mouth." That was how I felt after talking and crying with my wife. We are looking at a year of treatment and trials. But God is good and His grace is truly sufficient. How can you explain how forty eight hours later we can have such confidence and peace?
Hope you found something you enjoyed.
Dave Burchett is an Emmy Award winning television sports director, author, and Christian speaker. He is the author ofWhen Bad Christians Happen to Good People and Bring'em Back Alive: A Healing Plan for those Wounded by the Church. You can reply by linking through daveburchett.com