Last month a professor at East Tennessee State University read a column I wrote on Martin Luther King Jr. Day and thought enough of it to invite me to speak to her journalism class. She asked me to speak on what I think makes a good op-ed. Of my own writing, the column that caught … Continue reading Is Your Opinion Worth Our Time?
H.L. Mencken hated the South. My first meaningful encounters with Mencken's work came while we were in Dayton. Mencken approached his coverage of the Scopes Trial — and Dayton and its people — with the same quick-witted ferocity he was famous for. In reading over his attacks of the South in Ralph C. Wood's Flannery O'Connor and … Continue reading Do We Remember: ‘We Have Had Our Fall’
The first time we went to Jason and Kara Tippetts' home, it was for dinner with them and a few others. All of us were joining Jason and Kara in the adventure that would later be called Westside Church. It was spring 2012. Kara's blonde hair was beautiful and hung down to her shoulders. Her … Continue reading Kara Tippetts, Our Friend
It's been too long since I've written, but such is the case after the type of move we've had. As I write this, I'm sitting in wife's parents' living room before anyone else is awake. We're down in their home in Macon, Georgia, to celebrate Christmas with Julie's parents, siblings, their spouses, and their kids. … Continue reading Settling In Tennessee
I don't know if he meant to, but my friend Matthew Lee Anderson, in the same kind of way you hear on the local nightly news, just said in an ultrasmooth voice, "Now over to you, Michael." In his ever-so-insightful way, Matt called attention to a series of pieces from his Mere Orthodoxy collaborator Jake Meador … Continue reading A Small Town Writer’s Challenge