Outside the Walls: A God Who Sends

As I looked through misty eyes in the rearview mirror, a flood of emotions and memories filled my head as my wife and I dropped off our oldest son, Caden, at college. It seems like just yesterday there were midnight bottle feedings, T-ball games, and Barney birthdays. Then there was deer hunting, sunset shrimping, Grand […]

Outside the Walls: Counting Seeds, Not Just Trees

During the pandemic quarantine, my son, Corder, had a great idea: “Let’s plant a garden!” My wife, Leisa, thought this was a good idea, but I knew who would be doing the cultivating. So, Leisa and I got to work, and Corder got to play. For those of you who are gardeners, you understand the […]

Outside the Walls: Shifting from Quarrels to Love

“Quit fighting! You’re on the same team!” No, that was not a motion at the Southern Baptist Convention. However, I said this quite frequently as my two young boys were locked up while attempting to do something together. When my boys were younger, I would purposely get them to work together to try to accomplish […]

Outside The Walls: Developing Disciples

Graduation Day! I remember it vividly. It was the culmination of months of anticipation and preparation. I had listened to the instruction of my teacher and thought I was ready to tackle the years ahead. When the day arrived, a flood of anxiety came over me and I didn’t know if I could go through […]

Outside the Walls: Shift of Pandemic Proportions 2

The day the world stopped, mY schedule was slammed. It began with workouts that morning about 5 a.m., rush to get the kids moving, meetings to attend, a 30-minute interstate commute that could easily triple in a split second, Dad’s sports shuttle and dinner in the car as we traveled to baseball practice and games, […]

Outside the Walls: Shifts of Pandemic Proportions

Do you remember where you were when …? The event that follows shifted history: — Man walked on the moon. — The plane flew into the World Trade Center. — A virus shut down the world. The past year has shifted life as we knew it. Greetings shifted from a handshake to a fist bump. […]

Outside the Walls: Small Town, Big Deal

I remember the day that our world changed in the small town where I grew up. Everyone was talking about it. It was the buzz of the school. The men at the drug store who met for coffee each morning talked about it all week. The local newspaper even ran a story. Hardees was opening […]

Outside the Walls: Finding Jesus on ‘TikTok’

I was astonished at Mitchell’s answer. He had just confessed Jesus as Lord on my front porch after attending our 9th-10th grade small group of young men for four months. As we discussed his background, an Asian-American teenager from a non-practicing Buddhist family, it became clear that he had very limited knowledge of Christianity. I […]

Outside the Walls: Who Are South Carolina Baptists?

I was having a conversation with my 9-year-old son, Corder, about my new role as chief strategic officer for the South Carolina Baptist Convention when he posed the question. I thought of the complexity of the South Carolina Baptist Convention, and its rich history. This year we celebrate 200 years of ministry, and I wondered […]

Outside the Walls: The Year of Hope

What Christmas gift from your childhood do you remember the most? The year was 1983. I had given Mom a variety of gifts that she could potentially choose from. It takes a kid a few years to figure out this strategy, but I had high hopes of receiving the one thing I asked for: a […]