Welcome Home, Grief.

By |2020-10-05T16:12:18+00:00October 5th, 2020|Death, God, Grief, Healing, Shame|

Hello, Grief. Come into my house; make yourself comfortable. I trust you, as you are a relentless yet steady companion.  Come to the table. Yes, my friend, you are invited to eat. You may have the seat of honor, for though I do not love you, I respect you.  I [...]

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The Shape of Grief: Guest Post by Andrew May

By |2020-09-06T17:13:53+00:00September 6th, 2020|Kindness, Death, Glory, Grief, Healing, Wilderness|

I am pleased to feature a guest post today by photographer and podcaster, Andrew May with Allegory & Elm in Asheville, NC. Seldom do you have a photographer who is willing to enter into the depths and contradictions of what it means to be human as courageously as Andrew and [...]

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WAP: A Celebration of Female Sexuality or An Internalization of Male Supremacy? 

By |2020-09-02T17:57:56+00:00September 2nd, 2020|Domestic Violence, Addiction, Grief, Healing, Marriage, Masculinity, patriarchy, Pornography, Relationships, Sexism, Sexual Abuse, Sexuality, Shame, Violence|

  *trigger warning: Degrading language, graphic sexual abuse described    Patriarchy’s influence on popular culture has made objectification and violence against women normative. We are so accustomed to violence against women, we don’t even react to it anymore. Songs I grew up listening to, for example, “O.P.P." by Naughty By [...]

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How to Honor Your Mother & Father as You Heal

By |2020-08-15T16:24:01+00:00August 15th, 2020|Fatherlessness, Forgiveness, Grief, Healing, Kindness, Loss, Relationships|

One question that comes up often during the healing journey is, how do I honor my mother and father? Telling the truth of one's family of origin is vital to understanding the truth of one’s own life. To begin to live differently, we must first see clearly.   Why does [...]

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Sexualizing Sorrow: How Trauma Informs Our Sexual Brokenness

By |2020-03-11T02:33:48+00:00March 11th, 2020|Addiction, Glory, God, Grief, Healing, Loss, Marriage, Masculinity, patriarchy, Pornography, Relationships, Sexism, Sexuality, Shame|

For us to break free from our unwanted compulsive behaviors, we must have the courage to delve deeper into our woundedness and explore what lies beneath it. We must begin to kindly yet decisively cut out the roots of our sexual acting out. To do this, we must first gain [...]

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If I Were an Abuser, What Church Would I Want to Attend?

By |2020-09-10T13:34:06+00:00March 9th, 2020|Addiction, Church, Domestic Violence, Forgiveness, God, Grief, Healing, Kindness, Marriage, patriarchy, Relationships, Sexism, Sexual Abuse, Shame, Violence|

I am proud to feature the work of Dr. Nancy Murphy on my blog today. Dr. Murphy is a professor, Executive director of Northwest Family Life, and runs www.DVtraining.net to help educate churches in navigating issues of Domestic Violence. She has been my teacher and supervisor for the past 10 [...]

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Seeing My Dad’s Body

By |2020-03-03T20:24:37+00:00March 3rd, 2020|Addiction, Death, Fatherlessness, Forgiveness, Glory, Grief, Healing, Shame, Uncategorized|

The hot Clearwater, Florida sun demanded that we turn up the AC in the rental car on our way to the funeral home. As Christy and I drove up to the faded yellowish-white brick building, I felt the familiar tension of grief deep in my body. I knew this feeling, [...]

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My Dad’s Eulogy

By |2020-03-02T18:37:51+00:00March 2nd, 2020|Death, Grief, Healing, Loss|

This was the eulogy that I read at my dad's funeral. I want to continue to honor him in telling the complexity of truth, living in such a way, that is full-bodied and full-hearted.   Dad, I don’t think I told you enough. But I love you. You hurt me so [...]

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Grieving a Lost Self

By |2019-12-04T16:53:03+00:00December 4th, 2019|Death, Death, Fatherlessness, Glory, God, Grief, Healing, Kindness, Loss, Marriage, Masculinity, Relationships, Self-Contempt, Sexuality, Shame|

I knew what had to be done; now I had to convince my body to carry out what my mind was telling me. It was about 9:00 p.m. when I reluctantly began gathering my belongings. I opened my pack and began filling it with my sleeping bag, a lighter, a [...]

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I Carry You With Me, Everywhere. 

By |2019-10-29T20:52:53+00:00October 29th, 2019|Addiction, Fatherlessness, Glory, Grief, Healing, Masculinity, Poetry, Relationships, Self-Contempt, Shame|

I carry you with me, everywhere.  The lines of my hands resemble yours.  The wrinkles beginning to form on my face bear a time when you used to smile. I see you in my crooked nose;  it looks a lot like your integrity. These types of recognitions stun me on [...]

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Help! My Ex is Screwing Up my Kids

By |2019-09-27T16:10:58+00:00September 27th, 2019|Addiction, Domestic Violence, Glory, Grief, Marriage, Reader's Ask, Relationships|

Reader's Ask Andrew, My 20-year marriage ended in a rapid divorce last year. We share three children ages 9, 6, and 3. As a pastor's kid, I was steeped in patriarchy and lots of chaos in a dysfunctional family that over-spiritualized life and moralized disagreements to perpetuate enmeshment. I married [...]

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The Log & The Speck: In Light of Contempt 

By |2019-09-23T01:02:48+00:00September 23rd, 2019|God, Grief, Healing, Marriage, Relationships|

“Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your spouse’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your spouse, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your [...]

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My Child Was Exposed to Pornography: From a Concerned Mother

By |2019-08-19T17:09:16+00:00August 19th, 2019|Death, Fatherlessness, Grief, Healing, Kindness, Marriage, Pornography, Sexual Abuse, Sexuality, Shame|

Below is a note from a concerned mother about her and her child's traumatic experience with pornography. We have chosen to protect the identity of the child and the family. Yet this letter is a gift for many of us to learn from as we continue the fight against the [...]

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Don’t Talk to me of God

By |2019-07-04T19:56:17+00:00July 4th, 2019|Church, Glory, Grief, Healing, Loss, Violence, Writings|

As I observe the state of our nation, I am increasingly concerned, especially with the state of the faith community at large. Many folks call the U.S. a Christian nation, and yet, in practice, we are anything but. While we increase our spending on military machines, we not only don’t [...]

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Where I Come From: My Racist Roots

By |2019-06-24T22:55:47+00:00June 24th, 2019|Death, Grief, Poetry, Racism, Shame, Violence|

“I imagine one of the reasons people cling to their hates so stubbornly is because they sense, once hate is gone, they will be forced to deal with pain.” – James Baldwin   Put your fingers in your ears; you will still hear us.  Go ahead, run. Faster, boy; you [...]

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A Letter to Your Parents: Reclaiming a Lost Voice

By |2019-09-03T14:55:56+00:00June 6th, 2019|Addiction, Fatherlessness, Forgiveness, Grief, Healing, Kindness, Loss, Pornography, Relationships|

    One exercise I do often with clients is have them begin to tell the truth to their parents. This is not an attempt to blame their parents for all their current problems, but rather to reclaim a lost voice. We often relate to our parents the same way [...]

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Let Addiction Reign: A Poem to My Father

By |2019-05-30T17:51:29+00:00May 30th, 2019|Addiction, Death, Fatherlessness, Grief, Loss, Masculinity, Poetry, Shame|

1 Addiction 2 Addictions 3 Addictions 4   Dad, can you be addicted to anything more?   5 Addictions 6 Addictions 7 Addictions 8   Damn Dad can’t you get numb yet?   9 Addictions 10 Addictions 11 Addictions 12   Will you ever stop hating yourself?   I am [...]

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Parable of the Self-Sufficient and the Broken

By |2019-02-13T23:23:18+00:00February 13th, 2019|Forgiveness, Glory, Grief, Healing, Shame|

A Therapeutic Rendition of Luke 18:9-14: 9 Then Jesus told this story to some who had great confidence in their own piety and scorned everyone else: 10 “Two men wanted to please God. One was self-sufficient, and the other was a broken man who needed help. 11 The self-sufficient man [...]

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Life After Porn: Reconstructing a Healthy Sexuality After Pornography

By |2019-02-05T20:28:36+00:00February 5th, 2019|Addiction, Grief, Healing, Masculinity, Pornography, Reader's Ask, Relationships, Sexual Abuse, Sexuality|

Dear Andrew, Before marriage, I was a sex addict who slept with hundreds of women and struggled terribly with porn. Porn was a struggle in the beginning of our marriage as well, but over time I have learned how to remove it from my life. I have never cheated on [...]

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