Attention Word Slingers readers: Beginning December 11, 2019, all posts will be available at Thank you for reading Word Slingers!


Thank you for reading my weekly thoughts on six timely topics. This week, three of my topics relate to one specific production, the film Unplanned. I confess, because of scheduling conflicts, I have yet to see the movie, but I plan to see Unplanned. I hope you will too, if you haven’t seen it yet!

1. Unexpected response

It was reported that Twitter banned the movie’s account. It also was reported that “several prominent cable networks—Lifetime, Hallmark Channel, HGTV, the Travel Channel, the Cooking Channel and the Food Network—have all refused to allow ads for the movie.”

Baptist Press reported Unplanned was ranked No. 4 in the box office in its opening weekend, collecting $6 million, which was double what the movie was projected to draw. BP also quoted WordSlingers entertainment writer Michael Foust who said the movie’s success “defies logic.”

“It was rated R—a rating that automatically makes it a no-go for many Christians,” Foust said. “It’s about abortion—a topic that most Americans would rather avoid.

“Most films would have failed in such a scenario. But the controversy about the rating and the advertising ban gave it attention it otherwise would not have received, sparking a backlash among moviegoers who supported it in droves.”

You can read Foust’s review on Unplanned here.

2. Actress and Abby on podcast

Chris Forbes had the chance to talk with Abby Johnson, whose story is told in Unplanned, and actress Ashley Bratcher who portrays Abby in the movie. Watch this edition of Messenger Insight here.

3. West sings ‘Unplanned’ song

Finally, I had to share Matthew West singing his song that goes along with the movie. It’s powerful. Watch the video:

4. Prior proclaims abortion ‘unthinkable’ in 50 years

I have blogged about Karen Swallow Prior previously. She fascinates me.

Check out her article in Vox (not considered a conservative site), as she explains why she believes abortion will be unthinkable in 50 years.

“Nothing marks the progress of any society more than the expansion of human rights to those who formerly lacked them,” Swallow Prior wrote.

And I love this comment of hers: “…rights for women that come at the expense of unborn children aren’t true liberation; they merely, as one writer put it, enable the ‘redistribution of oppression.’”

Swallow Prior is a BOLD advocate for the unborn. I admire her fearlessness when it comes to defending the Sanctity of Human Life.

5. Great piece on origin of African Bible Study

I’ve said this before: I wish I could write articles as well as Sarah Eekhoff Zylstra. I’m rarely disappointed and often fascinated with the information she shares. Most of the time, I enjoy her articles so much, I read them again.

Please check out her article “Why the World’s Longest Reformed Bible Study Started in Africa.” Some of my friends who have participated in Bible Study Fellowship should find this piece interesting as well.

6. A tribute to Al

Finally, I close with sharing Berry Tramel’s column on Al Eschbach who is being inducted into the Oklahoma Broadcasters Hall of Fame.

Two people who had a major influence in my pursuing a career in sports (covering not playing) are Mike Treps, former sports information director at the University of Oklahoma, and Eschbach who literally was the first radio broadcaster to host a sports talk show in Oklahoma.

Many of my days of youth were spent listening to KTOK (AM 1000) from 6:15 to 7 p.m., as Al would come on the air on weeknights, and on Fridays he would have trivia nights when you could call in his show, ask a sports trivia question, and if you stumped Al, he would ask you a trivia question back. If you got his answer right, you’d win a big prize. I never got far enough to get Al’s question correct.

But read Tramel’s article, and you can find out about Mike Steely’s success, which is quite impressive, as well as many great memories and achievements of Al’s career.