I love this time of year! Christmas is a big hit for me, as
well as everything else that happens that surrounds Christmas. This week’s DHD
has some holiday flavor to it, but I cover other timely topics too.
Thanks for reading!
1. The happiest
I get quite a few of my DHD topics from friends on Facebook,
the articles they share.
This week a friend shared “The
Happiest People Are Those Who Realized That God Is Enough” by Rania Naim.
I’ve never heard of Rania Naim. I appreciate her poetry and
writing. I’ve read “Happiest People” a handful of times, and I like her
But I have to be honest—current writings have caused me to
be jaded. Somebody comes up with a trendy message like Jesus hates religion, don’t
say you’re blessed or go watch your face, and my conservative Christian guard
I don’t mean to discredit anything Naim shared in “Happiest
People.” She encouraged me. However, I also noticed she did not mention
Scripture, and I also wonder if she herself is one of the “happiest people” she
I welcome your feedback.
2. Music and dementia
Another Facebook friend shared this
article about music never getting lost with dementia patients. This reminded
me about my mother.
Mom passed away in September after
struggling with dementia for more than 10 years. In the last three years of her
life, the dementia was pretty aggressive, even though Mom kept a mostly happy
But one thing is certain, she
never lost her love and passion for music. She played the piano for the
majority of her life, and she loved to sing.
One thing I will miss at this year’s
Christmas Eve service at church is Mom being with me and singing every song.
3. Facts about IMB
This week was the Week of Prayer
for the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering. If you are not familiar with the LMCO
or the International Mission Board, which the offering supports, check out this
article provided by the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission.
Even if you are familiar with the
IMB, you might learn something you didn’t already know if you read it.
4. Getty’s Christmas Carol Series
One of my favorite parts of the Christmas season is the
music. I know there are those who can listen to Christmas music year round, and
that’s fine if you’re one of those peeps.
But right now is the best time of year for such tunes. I
consider the few weeks leading up to Dec. 25 as the “March Madness” time for
Christmas music. And I am fully in the groove.
Of course, the best holiday music is Christmas Carols, songs
and hymns that reflect the actual meaning of Christmas, which is celebrating
the birth of Jesus Christ.
from Dec. 2 until Dec. 12, an article by Keith Getty is being released each day
about some of the great carols. Getty is a great hymn writer and worship
leader, and I’ve enjoyed his insight about each song. I hope you will check out
all of the articles. I confess, there’s a few song I did not know before
reading Getty’s write-ups.
5. Mohler and the
You know I can’t go too many weeks without mentioning Albert Mohler and The Briefing.
Check out Wednesday’s edition
where he addresses a presidential candidate’s view of the Electoral College. It’s
a great education!
6. Christmas outreach
Finally, I enjoyed Glen Scrivener’s “2
Ways to Approach Outreach This Christmas.”
His conclusions are excellent and challenging. All
Christians should apply both outreach methods.
I always appreciate people reading Doyle’s Half Dozen. I
usually think nobody reads my blog, but then somebody unexpectedly will tell me
they read it, so thank you for reading!
1. The squawking about
Chick fil A
The biggest news this week in the American Christian sphere
is Chick fil A announcing its charitable foundation will end its financial
support with certain organizations that have been identified as controversial
with the LGBTQ community.
Two of the best commentaries I read on CFA’s decision are by
You Be Angry A Chick fil A?”—and Erick Erickson—“Give
Chick fil A the Benefit of the Doubt, But…”
Both Moore and Erickson are fair to CFA. I do like the
proposals Erickson offers to CFA to help clear up some confusion the restaurant
franchise has caused with its customers, as well as squelching the appearance
of smearing both Salvation Army and Fellowship of Christian Athletes.
It’s one thing for CFA to choose to financially support
other groups. CFA has that right. However, both Salvation Army and FCA are facing
accusations that are undeserving, especially considering neither organization
has any conflict with the LGBTQ community. In fact, Salvation Army would offer
care and shelter unconditionally to someone who identifies with the LGBTQ
By the way, I had my usual Friday morning breakfast at CFA
and plan to have my traditional pre-game meal of CFA in Norman tomorrow night.
2. Great article on
helping aging parents
Gaye Clark penned a great piece titled “When
an Aging Parent Rejects Help.” She gives practical advice and provides a
Karen and I can relate well to what Clark describes in her
article. Perhaps you can appreciate the article too.
3. A church plant
story for the movies
If you frequently read DHD, you know how much of a fan I am
of Sarah Eekhoff Zylstra. Every time I go on The Gospel Coalition website and
see an article with her name by it, I’m ready to read it.
Zylstra is an excellent reporter and story teller. Her
writing style adds an inspiring flare to what is happening in today’s Christian
Her article “The
Worst Time to Plant a Church” is another confirmation. Even my favorite
blogger Trevin Wax promoted Zylstra’s article in this week’s edition of “Trevin’s
Seven.” Wax wrote, “Amazing account of God’s faithfulness in the midst of
earthly loss. Here’s what happened to The Falls Church when they left the
Episcopal Church USA and lost their property.”
It would not surprise me if one of
Zylstra’s articles inspires a screenwriter to make a movie about one of her
C.S. Lewis tales
I learned about Dan DeWitt this week.
The guy appears to be an aficionado on C.S. Lewis because he wrote a bunch of
blogs on the famous author and apologist this week on his website www.theolatte.com.
The blogs aren’t very long. My
favorites were “Why
C.S. Lewis Wouldn’t Write for Christianity Today” and “C.S. Lewis’
Last Letter,” which Lewis wrote Nov. 21, 1963. He died Nov. 22, the same
day as President John Kennedy’s assassination.
Good movie reviews (and reviews are good too!)
Michael Foust features weekly movie
reviews on WordSlingersOK.com. If you haven’t read any of Foust’s work, you
should, especially the two reviews he posted today.
Check out “’Frozen
2’ isn’t as memorable, but is it family-friendly?” and “’Playing
With Fire’ is funny, family-friendly and surprisingly good”.
Many times, I have seen movies because
of Foust’s reviews. He even has me interested in seeing “Playing With Fire”
after reading his write-up.
As you can tell, Foust emphasizes a
criteria that is helpful for families, letting them decide if a movie is
appropriate for their children to watch. He also has a Gospel emphasis, and the
discussion questions he always provides are helpful when discussing a movie
with a non-Christian.
Next week is Thanksgiving, so I wanted
to re-share a
Bible commentary that I shared in a DHD I wrote in 2016:
I read a great commentary in the Life Application Bible on
Psalm 92:1-2 – “It is good to give thanks
to the Lord to sing praises to the Most High. It is good to proclaim your
unfailing love in the morning, your faithfulness in the evening.”
Here’s the commentary:
“During the Thanksgiving holiday, we focus on our blessings and express
our gratitude to God for them. But thanks should be on our lips every day. We
can never say thank you enough to parents, friends, leaders and especially to
God. When thanksgiving becomes an integral part of your life, you will find
that your attitude toward life will change. You will become more positive,
gracious, loving and humble.”
May we all strive toward being thankful every day.
I have gone back and forth on what this week’s DHD should
There’s a lot of current issues of which I could give
commentary. I’ve also read some great articles, thought-provoking pieces that I
would love to share.
Lastly, I participated in an impactful two-day event earlier this week—the Annual Meeting of Oklahoma Baptists, which included an excellent pastor’s conference and a moving, crowd-drawing Sending Celebration of international missionaries—and I could give a great report on all that occurred.
Instead of delving into all of this blog fodder, I decided to break down a powerful interview that Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Nick Foles gave.
Even while penalties and punishments are being reported from the Miles Garrett incident, I will shed some positive light, even the Gospel light, through another NFL player who is about to return to the gridiron this Sunday after suffering a collarbone injury during the first week of the season.
Check out what Nick Foles said after a reporter asked him about his Christian faith:
1. ‘I’m going to
glorify You in every action, good or bad.’
Nick shares his version of “If we win we praise Him, and if
we lose we praise Him,” the phrase that was made famous in the movie Facing the Giants.
2. ‘I can still have
joy in injury’
This is a key comment because Nick knew it would not be easy
for people to understand. He even followed up with admitting that it sounds
crazy, but the only people who can get what he means are those who have Jesus
in their lives.
3. ‘I didn’t need
that trophy to define who I was’
This is another puzzling statement. He talked about winning
the Super Bowl when he played for the Philadelphia Eagles. This is the ultimate
moment of success for any professional football player, and Nick downplays it.
He even gives a plea to that player who doesn’t have Jesus in his life who is
pursuing similar success and can’t find contentment when he lays down at night.
4. ‘My purpose isn’t football; it’s impacting people’
Many believe that sharing the Gospel is for people in
full-time ministry. With this comment, Nick squelches that concept. All
Christians are giving the charge to share the Gospel throughout the world,
regardless of our occupation. I was encouraged to hear Nick say that the locker
room is his ministry, even while he was injured.
5. ‘I don’t believe in the prosperity gospel’
Whoa Nick! Now he’s stepping on some toes here! And I love it. Nick shared more truth about the Bible in this small segment than what many televangelists preach. The Bible does speak about trials that help you grow in your faith (James 1:2-3).
6. Going against
I’m glad Nick mentioned Frank Reich, the head coach of the
Indianapolis Colts. Frank also has a great testimony, and Sarah Eekhoff Zylstra
shared his story how he once was a seminary
president before becoming an NFL head coach.
Take heart, my friends! God is still moving today, even in
Thank you for reading this week’s edition of Doyle’s Half Dozen. Here’s six timely topics for you to consider.
1. Berlin Wall’s been down 30 years
I was in my junior year of college when the Berlin Wall came crumbling down. It felt like being in a vacuum while I was in college. I did not have as much access to news during those years, but it seemed odd at the time that West Germany and East Germany would reunite after 40 years being separated.
Now, it’s been 30 years since the
Wall came down, and the oddity seems to be in reverse. We can’t imagine Germany
The International Mission Board
offers a great excerpt from an article written in 1990, giving the perspective
of mission work being done in Berlin soon after the teardown of the Wall.
I hope you will check out “The Berlin
Wall, Thirty Years Later.”
2. Stetzer on Crist
John Crist has been on the rise as
a Christian comedian. If you don’t recognize his name, it’s likely you have
seen one or few of his videos shared on social media.
News broke this week that Crist
has been accused of sexual misconduct and is cancelling his current concert
tour, as well as future performances.
Ed Stetzer comes through once again to give proper perspective. He always communicates objectively when sharing his views when controversy occurs among Christians and specifically among Southern Baptists. His article “John Crist, Failure and Warnings to Heed for Christian Leaders” is an excellent read.
3. Trump impeachment status
I’ve steered clear of the mess
involving President Trump and his well-known communications with Ukraine and
how it has turned into a major mess in Congress.
One of the better articles I have
read about the current impeachment inquiry is from Andrew McCarthy, “Trump
Impeachment Inquiry is Unpredictable.”
McCarthy, David French and Albert Mohler are three people whom I find to be the most accurate in analyzing this impeachment process. All three are not strong Trump supporters, but they each have concluded that the President handled the Ukraine episode poorly but not in a fashion deserving impeachment.
A friend on Facebook shared a
great comment from French who was ironically referencing McCarthy when
was inappropriate for the president to point the Ukrainians specifically and
explicitly at the Bidens. A more polished president would simply have said, ‘We
want you to root out corruption, no matter how high up it goes, even in our own
government’—the Ukrainians would have gotten the point and there would be
nothing to criticize. Trump went about it crudely. Commendable? Of course not.
A valid reason to vote against him in 2020? Surely. But it’s not impeachable.”
4. Thunder remembers
worked the Oklahoma City Thunder-Orlando Magic game on Tuesday, Nov. 5, and the
pregame was more resonating than the actual game (Thunder won, though, so that’s
a great thing).
Before tip-off, the Thunder recognized the family members of the 168 people who died in the bombing of the Murrah Building in 1995. Each family member received a jersey in the likeness of the ones that will be worn later this year. The jerseys commemorate the Bombing Memorial.
Here’s a video of the experience, which I think is an awesome flick.
5. Midway movie and Veterans’ Day
Veterans’ Day is next Monday, Nov.
11. Many will observe this day, as well as during this weekend, as an
opportunity to show appreciation for those who served in the military and
especially those who sacrificed their lives during their military service.
One way you could prepare yourself
for Veterans’ Day is to go see the new release Midway, which debuts in theaters this weekend. Check out Michael
Foust’s review of the film here.
6. Come to Annual Meeting!
Finally, here’s my last appeal to
you to come to next week’s Annual Meeting of Oklahoma Baptists. It will be at
Quail Springs Baptist Church in Oklahoma City, Nov. 11-12. There is so much
involved during these two days, and I hope you can participate in all of it.
Two specific meetings I would
encourage you to attend are the opening session of the Annual Meeting at 6:30
p.m. on Monday, Nov. 11, and the IMB Sending Celebration at 6:30 p.m. on
Tuesday, Nov. 12. Both of these events will be monumental, as the opening
session will be a time Oklahoma Baptist leaders present a new charge and focus
of how we intend to operate and serve collectively as Oklahoma Baptists across
The IMB Sending Celebration also
is a “can’t miss” experience, as it will be a demonstration of what we do as
Southern Baptists of both “sending and going” in the sharing of the Gospel
throughout the world.
You can find out more about the
Annual Meeting here.
I’m excited to share with you my timely topics in this week’s Doyle Half Dozen, especially the first topic that I am reporting.
Thanks for reading!
1. Barry the deacon
A couple of weeks ago, Scott Patton contacted the Baptist Messenger, asking if he could
submit a story he wrote about one of his church members. Patton is pastor of
Indiahoma, First, located outside Lawton in the southwest part of Oklahoma.
I remembered meeting Patton and his wife Tami more than two
years ago, when I did a story about Indiahoma,
First offering a one-day program for kids since Indiahoma, at the time, was
observing four-day school weeks. The Pattons were overseers of this program
that used to meet on Mondays.
Patton is now serving as Indiahoma, First’s pastor, and with
story he gave to the Messenger,
his church, and especially a member of the church, is becoming known throughout
Barry Asenap is 51, living with Down syndrome and, according
to Patton, is “an absolute mainstay” in the church. Now he is an ordained
deacon of Indiahoma, First, after the church unanimously approved his
The Messenger is
overjoyed that Patton allowed us to share his story about Barry. His story was
posted on our website on Thursday afternoon, Oct. 31, and within an hour, the
national news source Baptist
Press picked it up. Also, on the Messenger’s
Facebook page, as of the moment I am typing this, the story has been shared 37
Praise God for what He is doing in Barry’s life and the
encouragement that is resonating with those who learn about Barry’s role as a
2. Digital life after
What happens to social media accounts of people who die?
Have you wondered about this? I certainly have, for a few years now, as I have
seen friends of mine who have passed away still receive Facebook posts, such as
from friends who acknowledge them on their birthdays.
Emily Belz goes even deeper on this issue in her article “Digital life
after death.” You should check it out, especially if you have lost a loved
one, or if you want to know what to do after a loved one dies.
Belz covers legal aspects, as well as practical steps to
follow with Facebook on what to do with a loved one’s account.
She ends her report with how one person is sharing the
Gospel through Facebook with non-Christian friends of the deceased loved one.
3. Shawshank at 25
I used to go to the movies a lot when I was in my 20s. And there even were a few flicks I saw multiple times at the theater. Of course, this was when $1 movies were all the rage.
As I recall, The Hunt for Red October and A Few Good Men rank high on my list of theater viewing. I remember going to see Red October at least five times, and Few Good Men is about the same. If you don’t like watching movies with people who quote all the lines, don’t invite me over if you are watching either of these.
Believe it or not, the movie that surpassed all theater
stops on my list is The Shawshank
Redemption. I think I went to the theater at least 8-10 times to watch Shawshank, and there’s no telling how
many times I watched it on video or TV broadcasts.
This week I read Tim Briggs’ article “’Shawshank
Still Preaches, 25 Years Later,” which reminded me how old I am and
rekindled memories of when I first saw this movie. Without spoiling it, the
ending of Shawshank shocked me in my
original viewing, but there’s so much to the story that makes it so enjoyable
to watch over and over. Shawshank
even taught me that the bank will mail packages for you.
Check out Briggs’ analogy of how the story of Shawshank symbolizes the Gospel of Jesus
4. Piper advises
John Piper does a great job in giving practical advice for
living the Christian life. I read through the transcript
of his addressing a question from a nurse who regularly has to work Sunday
Piper is very thorough in his answer, and I especially appreciate
his explanation of why Christians today traditionally celebrate “Sabbath” on
Sunday instead of Saturday.
The best thing I interpreted from Piper’s guidance is how
Christians should want to spend a day to celebrate the Lord with other
believers, and he discredited any legalistic application.
5. Kentucky Supreme
Court favors Christian print shop owner
I’m happy for Blaine Adamson, owner of Hands On Originals, a
screen printing operation in Lexington, Ky. that prints designed t-shirts.
Adamson won a legal case in the Kentucky Supreme Court, which ruled in favor of
Press (BP) reported Adamson’s victory after he was sued by a group
promoting homosexuality. Adamson refused to print shirts with messages that
went against his Christian beliefs. As BP reported, Southern Baptist leader
Russell Moore said this ruling is “good news for every American.”
“We need to live in the kind of country where we can be
free to seek to persuade one another, not bully each other into silence,”
said Moore, president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC),
in a news release. “Conservative evangelicals, secular progressives and
everyone in between ought to be able to agree on the idea that a state must not
act as lord over the conscience.
“My hope is that this decision is a sign that courts around the
country will continue to uphold conscience freedom and personal soul
I appreciate Moore’s wording of respecting a person’s
6. Mohler on impeachment
I got word that Albert Mohler is going to be nominated next year as president of the Southern Baptist Convention. There is nobody among SBC leadership who is more respected and more deserving of the presidential role, and I am hoping he runs unopposed. Wouldn’t that be a great message of unity!
Mohler offered great commentary on many current issues this
week on The Briefing podcast. His Friday, Nov. 1
edition gives an excellent analogy of the recently announced impeachment
inquiry by the U.S. House of Representatives.