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My friend Eric and I have known each other for a couple decades. Eric is a large human being, measuring in at around 6’7” and 250 pounds. Even as one of the younger guys in our social circle, Eric was always bigger than the rest of us. Of course, as teenagers, that didn’t stop our group of friends from regularly banning together and pinning him to the ground, forcefully lifting his shirt and using a sharpie to mark as much of his upper body as possible. He would squirm and giggle as we wrote messages like “Stacy Murphy was here” (his 9th grade crush). We doodled little sketches onto his torso in the permanent ink, or sometimes labeled his fat rolls, which he affectionately referred to as “Bubba” and “Little Bubba”. I know that sounds like we were bullies and were traumatizing our pal, but it was all in good fun and I’m pretty sure he liked the attention.

Currently, I have three or four partially written blogs about really important spiritual things - you know what I mean -  the kind of stuff pastors are supposed to write about. I’ll finish those sooner or later, but I thought I’d deviate a bit from normal.

Last week I started listening to a new podcast (or at least new to me) by NPR called How I Built This. Now before you start assuming certain things about me because I referenced NPR, know that I’m not a vegan and I don’t drink espresso or drive a Volvo. Of course I have no problem with Volvo-driving, NPR folks. I mean, more vegetarians in the world means more steak for the rest of us! Am I right!? (I know that was cheesy. I couldn’t resist.)

Recently I went for a run. To be clear, I’m not a good runner. I typically log about a ten minute pace, with a good day inching closer to the 9:30 mark. That said, I can mostly go forever if time allows. Running, for me, is a chance to disconnect. It’s an opportunity to stop thinking or stressing about life’s day-to-day responsibilities and disappear for a while. My running ritual starts with strapping up some Nikes, throwing on my head phones, and racing through the neighborhood next to mine; the one with the big, expensive houses and nice sidewalks. 

Yesterday I had a brief phone conversation with a homosexual man who attends my church. Yes, you read that right, I have gay people at my church. Yes, you read that right as well, I said people. As in more than one. Plural. If that bothers you then there's a chance this post in it’s entirety may set your hair on fire (is that a real expression?).