Archives For friends

I have the privilege today of guest posting at that the Daily Gallen, the blog, and brainchild, of my friend, Tim Gallen. This month, he has turned his site into a digital playground, and is hosting all manner of different creative expressions from bloggers, writers, artists, photographers, etc.

Think of it as a creative magazine in blog form.

My contribution is less post, and more conversation, as I attempt to engage in dialogue with the online A.I. entity known as Cleverbot. (I’ll leave it to you to decide just how clever this ‘bot is).

Here is a taste:

“User: Hello, Cleverbot, how are you?

Cleverbot: I’m alright, I guess… Why are you sad?

User: Glad to hear you’re alright. No, I’m not sad. Are you?

Cleverbot: Are you?

User: Am I what?

Cleverbot: My wife.

User: No, I’m a happily married man of 22 years. I’m definitely not your wife! I didn’t even know robots could marry? Is that legal where you live?”

To read the rest, please click over to the Daily Gallen.

Folks, along with an elite cadre of fellow bloggers, I’m featured today on Kevin Haggerty’s often hilarious Isle of Man.

With those other fine folks, I’m there offering (at Kevin’s suggestion and instigation) New Year’s resolutions for celebrities.

Such as:

Honey BooBoo resolves to take her family’s beloved Ketchup “Sketti” sauce recipe global.

Click here to read the rest.

(Yes, this represents the less angsty, more funny, side of my writing. In other words it was fun to be asked to participate. Thanks, Kevin!).

Happy New Year!

I play Words With Friends. Everyday. At any given time, I’ll probably have twenty games going.

I like playing with words.

I do.

The challenge of finding the right combination of letters, swooping in, making the big score.

It appeals to me.

I play defensively, competitively. But I don’t always win. Because I often play people who are better than me.

And this has been good for my game. Very good–it’s made me a better player.

The same is true of life. If bad company, as the scriptures say, corrupts good character, is not the inverse also true?

What does affiliating with those who are successful in life do for us? Make us want to live better, right? Do better, reach higher.

At least I think so.

This year, I’ve been privileged to engage in some brief correspondences with some authors I admire. Besides getting to interact with some cool people, what is the net effect of this on me?

It makes me want to write better. It’s encouraging to know that these people–pros–struggle with some of the same insecurities. They’re people like you and me, and yet have pressed through the resistance.

Just like playing Words with better players makes me better, so does getting to know other writers make me want to step up my writing game.

But more than that, there’s a drawing near to Christ that elevates us into a higher kind of life. Getting to know him makes me want to please him. He makes me want to be a better man.

The point of this post is simply this:

Who we hang out with often determines in large part who we are–and who we want to be.

Agree, or disagree? The comment section is open, and the floor is yours.

First, a question:

What are you reading? I ask because I love books, and am always on the lookout for new reads. So keep that question in mind for the comments, ok?

Now, since I’ve let you go first, allow me to make some recommendations for books that will knock your socks off:

In the category of “Best book about Jesus I’ve ever read” is:

John Eldredge’s Beautiful Outlaw. I cannot recommend this book highly enough. Once you read it your view of Jesus will never be the same. Promise.

As a free plug, and if you’re at all interested in a closer walk with Jesus, I highly recommend you check out some of the resources on the Ransomed Heart webstore. Lifechanging.

In the “Best New Book About Sports and Jesus” category, we have:


My My Internet Name Rival’s new book, Love Thy Rival, about what sports’ greatest rivalries teach us about Jesus’ command to love our enemies.

Coincident with the release of this book, Chad has partnered with Samaritan’s Purse to build a clinic in Haiti. Check out the campaign, and support your team against its rival.


Last, but not least, in the category of “Best Book About Jesus and Zombies,” is Clay Morgan’s new book, Undead: Revived, Resuscitated, and Reborn. Professor Morgan has his finger firmly on the pulse of pop culture (well, technically zombies don’t have a pulse, and will eat you if you try to take it. But I digress), while being firmly rooted in history, and scripture. Don’t miss this book!

So there are three books I’m reading (expect full reviews in the coming days) right now. Again: what are you reading? Share in the comments.

Today, I have the great honor of guest posting for Jim Woods–he of UnknownJim blog fame. Now there’s a joke for you: between us, Jim and I are random, and unknown.

Sounds like an Evangelical existential identity crisis.

Or something.

While there may some truth to that, Jim and I seem to be finding our identities not only in God, but also via creative expression. And so it is, as we became acquainted via Twitter, and the blogosphere, that we discovered we share much in common.

So much so, that Jim has guest posted here, and now he’s being kind enough to return the favor.

Here’s a peek at Striving For Life:

“I was thrilled when Jim asked me to guest post. We have many of the
same ideas with regards to the intersection of the creative life with
the workaday world. If you’ve been around here awhile, you know of
Jim’s nervous breakdown, and how he found Jon Acuff’s Quitter
Conference at just the right time. I won’t here rehash any of his
excellent posts regarding that time.

Jim’s story resonates with me. I could be that guy,
the one having the nervous breakdown…”

You can find Jim on: his blog, Facebook, and Twitter.

Please head over to Jim’s place to read the rest of my post, Striving For Life. If it wouldn’t be too much trouble, please also take a minute to visit Andi Cumbo’s blog, where Jim is guest posting today.