The late comedian Rodney Dangerfield was famous for quipping, “I get no respect.” That line showed up in some way, shape, or form in most of the films he was famous for. Dangerfield typically played the role of bumbling but loveable idiot, who somehow managed to come out on top. But even though he came out on top, he still “got no respect.”

Born on the 10th of November.

Loved by some. Hated by others. Misunderstood by still more.

Surrounded by history and legend, some of it true and some of questionable validity. With a reputation for enjoying a few beers and spouting off some rather harsh insults, even sprinkling in some profanity to the conversation from time to time. 

Loud and a bit brash. Regularly accused of being obnoxious or aggressive, and of using unconventional means to accomplish the mission. Sleep deprived and often experiencing digestive issues thanks to a high carb diet.

Marrying someone off limits. At times, demonstrating absolute disdain for certain kinds of authorities.

Hero or terror, it depends which side of the disagreement you find yourself on. Unafraid of throwing a punch and never holding back. You really wouldn’t want to be on the opposing side, for then the excrement would soon start flying your way.

You know the scene. It is the end of the date. Boy and girl, face to face, nervously rocking back and forth, inching closer, fumbling about, both wanting to, but neither one quite bold enough to make the final move for the first kiss. Someone needs to be courageous and pucker up or it is not gonna’ happen. And if they both start inching backwards, playing coy, expecting the other person to make the move, the likelihood of a first kiss, shrinks away even faster.

By Ross Engel

I always wanted to be an astronaut. My childhood bedroom was decorated with space memorabilia. As a teenager, I had a full size wall mural in my bedroom of the Space Shuttle Columbia orbiting the earth. I collected shuttle mission patches, built model rockets, and stared at the stars. I watched “The Right Stuff,” “Return of the Jedi,” and “Space Camp” every chance I got, and spent many a night dreaming about one day journeying into the great unknown. There was a reason why my Dad called me his little “space cadet.”

By Ross Engel

A wise and experienced pastor once told me, “Preaching the Law of God to a Congregation is like throwing a brick into a pack of dogs. The dog that yelps is the one that got hit with the brick.” Now, before I go any further, I want to make a few things perfectly clear. I am not advocating that anyone tests this theory by throwing bricks into packs of dogs, for that would be inhumane and cruel, nor am I advocating that pastors view their congregations like a pack of wild dogs, for that would be degrading and would not profit anyone. Scripture speaks of the people of God as beloved sheep, cared for by the Good Shepherd and served by under-shepherds. Personally, I have always appreciated the imagery of the congregation as a flock of sheep who are cared for by a sheepdog, for both sheep and sheepdog find their rest under the Good Shepherd.