“Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love.” (1 Corinthians 16:13-14)

The Jagged Word has always been a place that encourages meaningful conversation about what is happening in the Church as it intersects with, reacts to, and challenges current cultural trends. The friends that make up The Jagged Word and have written every week for the last few years have found that there are some common topics that tend to come up over and over again. While we certainly see topics of all things church reoccur, such as worship or preaching, we have also noticed that there has been an ongoing discussion about what it means to be a man.

By Paul Koch

Today is a strange day. It’s Father’s Day, of course, but as far as special days go this one never really feels quite right. It isn’t as obvious as Mother’s Day, just what we are supposed to do on this day. It always comes off as a bit awkward. There are not elaborate brunches being planned and more than likely no one has gone out to buy a bouquet of flowers. It shouldn’t be so difficult to say and do the right thing for our fathers on this day, but it certainly can be. If you were to ask most men what they want for Father’s Day, they probably haven’t even thought about it. Quite simply, they would be happy with whatever small token was given: a phone call, a card, even a “World’s Greatest Dad” coffee mug. But there’s an inherent tension about this day. Though they are happy to observe it, men didn’t ask for it; so we’re not quite sure what to do with it.

By Paul Koch

This Sunday is Father’s Day. Unfortunately, it’s not so much a day to honor our fathers and highlight their unique qualities. No, this sad little day hiding in the shadow of Mother’s Day has been engulfed by cheap gifts, tacky ties, and “Word’s Best Dad” mugs. So, do I show my dad how thankful I am for a lifetime of sacrifice and hard work by getting him some new golf balls? Or perhaps a new wallet would better demonstrate my appreciation for all he has done. Fortunately, just as there are gift buying guides for Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day, so also there are guides for Father’s Day. So, I can rest assured that I will pick the perfect thing that has the most cleverly devised marketing strategy for my demographic to finally be able to say to my dad, “I love you.”

By Cindy Koch

The boy held tightly to his father’s hand as the noise increased. Scared, he looked up past the tangled beard above into those fiery eyes of which he was already afraid. That face he saw above was frozen and hot, launching an invisible attack across the counter. The receiving enemy’s eyes darted to the right and left, unsure of how to escape. This young man on the other side of the counter nervously shifted his weight while feeling around blindly for something on which to hold on. This conversation was going very badly, and they all knew it.

By Bob Hiller

Imagine with me, if you will, a father having dinner with his children. At the table, the father waxes eloquent about what it means to be a member of his family. He describes with great passion the sort of people his children ought to be. He talks a great deal about how much he has done for his children, how much he has sacrificed for his family, how much he desires to see his family thrive. His is a love that the children strongly desire, his family is an ideal they long to be a part of. They appreciate the hard work he has done. They know it is an honor to be in this family. Of course they know. Their father tells them constantly.