My, how the feathers have flown in the past couple of weeks in response to a Biblical Recorder interview with Dan Cathy, COO of Chik-fil-A, where he claimed he and his family believed in the “traditional family” (i.e., the biblical, heterosexual marriage). Homosexual advocates cried fowl foul and planned on boycotting the chain henceforth, which then ruffled the feathers of culture-warrior evangelicals who claimed reverse-discrimination. I have hesitated to say anything about the issue, however the clash between social liberals and conservatives seems to have reached a boiling point and to ignore it would be to ignore the flames of what seems to me a gross injustice. Continue reading →
I realized earlier today, during an extremely rare stop at a Starbucks, one basic source of my current writer’s block (which I am writing about, ironically, on a blog). I miss the sometimes exciting structure and environment of being in school. I lamented it often while I was there, but the truth is that it fed my creativity. I mean this both for my undergraduate and graduate studies, in different ways. There is something absolutely amazing, for whatever anxiety-inducing effects are attached, about an academic environment and furthering one’s study in a chosen discipline. Much better still is the integration of one discipline with others. I have, over the years, become a staunch proponent of the liberal arts. I have a firm belief that you cannot study history, philosophy, religion, literature, the fine arts, or the sciences by themselves, but you must – absolutely must – learn how each one in involved with the others. It is only through the true connection of these that we will understand the everyday struggles of the societies in which we live. Continue reading →
Hammer Films produced many of the very best gothic horror films in the 1950s and 1960s. After its resurrection just a few years ago, Hammer now seems set to continue its tradition onward if The Woman in Black is any indicator. Hammer returns to its glory days of supernatural storytelling, invoking the Victorian-type ghost story in superb style. Easily one of the most stylish, most chilling horror films of the last couple of decades, this one also has a heart (as the best always do).The story plays on both the cards of the heartbroken young widower in grief over his wife’s death as well as the both sad and frightening vengeful ghost whose mystery plays out and creating a truly terrifying build-up. Continue reading →
I always get a little bit sad right before I leave for a trip to Georgia. My life is very much wrapped up in Louisville now. At the same time, I get sad again when I leave Georgia to come back. My family is there. The first 23 years of my life were spent there. I know those mountains like the back of my hand. At the same time, most of the time I am there I miss my life here, and while I am here I miss at least my family there. Never mind that I have friends in all corners of the world now that I hardly ever see. Such is the way of things. We all scatter our ways, and maybe we will see each other again, and maybe we won’t. That is, until the day that, God willing, those of us who have faith in him can be together forever in his glory. The heartache we feel reminds us that it wasn’t supposed to be this way. This life is now temporary and the new creation hasn’t happened yet. We’re waiting for it. Until then, we say goodbye to each other, but we do so with the hope that goodbye doesn’t have to be forever.
I’ve almost considered writing a book about my experiences and thoughts while writing my book on Christianity and horror. I know that’s very Don Miller-esque of me, but I can’t help thinking of the stories that have happened in my life in the roughly seven months since I first penned my rough-rough-rough draft of the book’s introduction. In that time, I have had many conversations with many diverse people dealing with art, literature, and a surprising amount of spiritual warfare. Continue reading →
A low-budget independent film by a sophomore director seeks to break every rule for so-called “Christian” films and instead make a compelling, realistic story about faith. Despite a few not-so-glaring flaws, the 2012 film Blue Like Jazz rings true, is superbly engaging, and has opened several doors for future filmmakers in the process. Continue reading →
My heart has been heavy the past few days. This past Friday, known as Good Friday throughout the Western Christian world, I preached my first funeral sermon. It was, quite honestly, one of the more painful experiences of my life. It wasn’t painful because of a fear of public speaking or anything like that. While I don’t particularly enjoy preaching, I am more than used to it by now. The painful part was in the very fact that the chief mourner was a close friend and spiritual brother, a young man of 21 I have regularly hung out with and mentored for the past few months, and the deceased was his mother. Though “keeping it together” outwardly for the proceedings, the tangibility of my friend’s pain troubled my soul with the force of a hurricane, and this is rightly so. This is the way of life together:
“Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.” (Rom. 12:15) Continue reading →