Grandchildren bring lessons in love

Tree Swing Plans and God’s Plan for Love Given the rare opportunity, I can go a long time without answering a phone of any kind and be just fine. In fact, one of the things I like about motorcycles is that talking on a phone on one is almost impossible and not recommended, unless you’ve […]

God truly deserving of our trust

Curtis Shelburne Who Do You Really Trust? By Curtis K. Shelburne

Ten rules to a good, clean fight

Curtis Shelburne Mark it down: all couples sometimes fight. If it makes you feel better to hedge, make that “All couples sometimes have serious and somewhat warm discussions.” That is nothing but normal, and may even be healthy—vastly healthier than the immature, toxic, and completely unfair “I’m clamming up,” passive aggressive, silent approach no one […]

Freedom comes at cost

Freedom is never free. As Americans are about to celebrate another national birthday, it’s good to think about the nature of freedom. Wrapped around all of our thoughts concerning the Fourth of July are, I hope, thoughts concerning the price that untold thousands of men and women have paid to obtain and perpetuate the freedom […]

Enjoying God’s gifts in moderation key to honoring Him

“I’m in a twelve-step program for recovering ascetics,” I explained to my missionary nephew. I knew he’d “get” it. More than a little conversant in theology and church history, Ian had joined his dad and uncles last spring at the old “home place” at Robert Lee, Texas. We had been dining quite well out by […]

Salvation not a bureaucracy

Curtis Shelburne God’s grace is wonderful. But if we think grace is easy, we need to think some more. One of Jesus’ most famous stories was told in response to a religious lawyer’s question: “Teacher, who is my neighbor?” The question was blatantly self-serving. Luke prefaces the lawyer’s question: “But he wanted to justify himself, […]

Our possessions not really ‘ours’

Curtis Shelburne We humans are so full of ourselves. We incessantly strut and preen, spout and sputter, spew and spray forth all manner of self-important nonsense, and the Father hearing his kids so solemnly hold forth must laugh. One day the curtain will be pulled back, and we’ll see clearly for the first time. I […]

Christians should look at faith with a larger lens

Curtis Shelburne

Mind better occupied with God than with fear

Curtis Shelburne Recently I decided that it might be interesting to start making a list—a list of the things the media tell us we should be afraid of. If you focused just on the morning shows in a two-week period, I’m betting you’d find that on every day, multiple times more often than not, the […]

God is a source of joy

By Curtis K. Shelburne Bruce Larson tells of a conference at a Presbyterian church in Omaha. As the story goes, people were given helium-filled balloons and told to hold them until a time came in the service when they experienced joy in their hearts. At that point, they could just let go of their balloons […]

Higher education should be balanced with ‘lower’ education

By Curtis K. Shelburne: Local columnist Higher education. That’s what we tend to call college and graduate school. Fine. Some important things can certainly be learned there. But the older I get, the more I am of the opinion that higher education ought to be balanced regularly with the kind of “lower” education that occurs […]

Real fulfillment found in God

By Curtis K. Shelburne: Religion columnist One of the best books I’ve read in a long time centers on one of the best stories of all time. The story is Jesus’ “Parable of the Prodigal Son,” and the book, which helped me see that great parable more clearly than ever before, is Timothy Keller’s The […]

God makes all things new

By Curtis K. Shelburne: Local columnist Christians serve a God who is making “all things new.” In the “Revelation,” the Apostle John contrasts the new heaven and the new earth with the old heaven and old earth that, he says, will pass away. He sees a new city, the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming […]

God saves those who trust in him

By Curtis K. Shelburne: Local columnist The son of some dear friends of mine lost his battle this week. The family feels defeated. It had been a long battle. For two decades, this young man had fought a battle with drugs. One night this week his much-abused body gave up. And now his family, long […]

Springtime chores blooming again

By Curtis Shelburne: Local columnist I hear that it’s beautiful outside today, though I’ve not had much chance to find out for myself just yet. Lately, any day wind gusts are below 50 mph might easily pass for beautiful. Yes, the birds are singing. The grass is turning green. And spring is in the air. […]

Ministry more of a calling than a career

By Curtis Shelburne: Religion columnist Twenty-five years. Easter Sunday was for my wife and me our 25th anniversary. “Interesting,” someone might say, “since three of your four sons are older than 25. Glad you got around to tying the knot.” Now did I say it was a wedding anniversary? No, I did not. But, though […]

There are more than enough laws

By Curtis Shelburne: Religion columnist There oughta be a law! No, probably there shouldn’t. But I know why we say it. 1) Stuff bugs us. You can’t have a complete meal in peace because you or the people around you don’t have enough sense to turn off cell phones for ten minutes. Let’s make a […]

The Coke County Ministry Conference

By Curtis K. Shelburn: Local columnist By far the most helpful ministry seminar I ever go to is one I try to faithfully attend twice a year at Robert Lee, Texas. I call it the Coke County Ministry Conference. The setting, the speakers, my fellow attendees—every aspect of this conference is truly remarkable. You should […]

God’s rules more important than man’s

By Curtis Shelburne: Religion columnist Not long ago my wife and I were away for a couple of days at a hotel in the Dallas area for a training seminar. For almost 20 years, I was the one attending the classes and she was the spouse along for the ride. For a number of years […]

Resurrection reconciles joy and sorrow

By Curtis K. Shelburne: Religion columnist More than a few writers have talked about the place where Joy and Sorrow meet. In a moment of deep contentment, someone may say, “I’m so happy I could cry!” And in the moments of deepest and most unutterable joy, we say nothing at all. We don’t live long […]