Archives for August 2009

Welcome to “The John Shore Show,” with Tonight’s Special Guest, Death.

(Last night, having fallen asleep while worrying about my wife having cancer, I dreamed I was a big deal television talk show host, and that my guest that night was Death.) Me: Welcome to the show. Death: Thanks! It’s great to be here. Me: I hate you. Death: Excuse me? Me: I mean, I hate [Read More…]

My Wife: Beautiful on the Outside–But That’s It

They say beauty is only skin deep. But thank God for that quarter-inch of skin. Because right beneath it lies a packed, jumbled mass of mess a starving vulture wouldn’t eat cold. You can just imagine God, having finished the basic design of humans, saying, “Yikes! Okay, if we expect humans to reproduce, we’ve gotta [Read More…]

Lady at Starbucks Loudly Accuses Mom of Child Abuse! Just Now!

I’m sitting inside a dinky Starbucks. About eight people are standing in line for fancy joes. It’s a baking 95 degrees outside. A woman—30ish, cut-off jeans, sleeveless tee—just burst into the store and called out, “Hey! Does anyone in here have a car out there with four kids in it?” No one replied; everyone just [Read More…]

“Born Into Sin” Just Means Born, Period

A reader wrote to me of her disdain for the Christian concept of original sin. “I do not subscribe to the Christian concept of original sin,” she said. “This concept has humans born as damaged goods, not pleasing to God.” For all those who don’t know, when Christians refer to babies being “born into sin,” or [Read More…]

“If the Holy Spirit Is Within Us, Why is Church Necessary?”

Can you believe that yesterday I overheard another conversation about Christianity? Amazing! This one was between “Ann” and “Betty.” And it’s made me wonder: Are other Christians these days feeling as Ann does? Do any of you guys? Ann: I feel weird telling you this, but I haven’t been to church in seven months. Betty [Read More…]

“God Can Love Me or Send Me to Hell. But Not Both.”

Sitting at Starbucks yesterday I overheard the following exchange between two men I’ll call Bob and Dan. I recount it here not to make any point of my own, but because it perfectly captures the kind of logjam we Christians so often reach when trying to explain our beliefs to non-Christians. Dan: But that just [Read More…]

No One REALLY Walks and Talks With Jesus

When speaking about matters of faith, we Christians use (duh: what else?) the only language available to us. But using language to capture the reality of God is like trying to use numbered children’s blocks to teach quantum physics. It’s simply insufficient for the job. By default, then, the language we employ to describe our [Read More…]

You Guys Are The Best: Thank You

From the bottom of my heart I want to thank those of you who, in response to Question of the Week: Does My Wife Have Cancer?, Waving Into the Dark, and God and I Discuss My Wife Having Cancer, wrote to send my wife Cat and me your prayers, love and personal stories sharing your [Read More…]

God and I Discuss My Wife Having Cancer

(After Question of the Week: Does My Wife Have Cancer?) Me: You know I have to sort of hate you now. God: I know. Me: It’s nothing personal. God: I know. Me: It’s the impersonality of death and suffering that makes it so blindingly infuriating. God: I know. Me: Makes it hard to believe you [Read More…]

Waving Into The Dark

It’s 11 a.m. and I’m in a doctor’s office, listening on my iPod to M.I.A.’s “Paper Planes” (which just shuffled to Talking Head’s “Once in a Lifetime”—but never mind).  My wife Cat is back where the Medical Stuff happens, getting a biopsy. They’ll snip a piece out of her, examine it, think about it. Cancer, [Read More…]