By Graham Glover

This past weekend, I spent an evening with two of my closest friends from childhood. I’ve known these men since I was in sixth grade. One was my best friend and high school debate partner. The other is married to my wife’s best friend and is the father of our godchild (who is my daughter’s best friend). I was in both of their weddings and baptized all their children. I haven’t lived in the same town as these guys for nine and a half years, but every time we get together, it’s as though little has changed. Life has taken us in somewhat different directions—one is an insurance agent, another is a lawyer, and I am a clergyman—but there remains a bond of friendship between us that will never break.

By Paul Nelson

There is a comfort in settling in with a set of drinks that you know you and those around you like and enjoy. It takes a certain amount of pressure off. That’s where I’ve been settled for the past couple of months. Content. Preparing a rotation of a dozen or so drinks (when we’re hosting), and more often enjoying a subset of those with my wife when we’re making dinner together (mojitos, Manhattans, pisco sours, sazeracs, and Aperol spritzes). 

By Paul Koch

Last taco Tuesday, I sat next to my buddy Tim at our usual spot. Televisions surrounded us above the bar and throughout the whole cantina. Almost all of them had some sort of sports on display from the LA Dodgers to the beginning of NFL training camps to just about anything you might find amusement in (even the terrible game of soccer). But every once and a while, a particular TV will stream the daily news that exists outside of the sports world as a sort of reprieve from the rest of the familiar storylines.

By Graham Glover

At any given time, there are less than 0.5% of Americans serving in any capacity in the Armed Forces of the United States. Let that sink in for a moment. Less than ½ of 1% of our population is currently serving in any branch – in any component (Active or Reserve) of our military. That is a staggering statistic! That 0.5% preserves the possibility for our democratic republic to survive for the remaining 99.5% is simply mind boggling.

By Paul Koch

Every congregation is its own unique entity, not completely separate from others but also not a simple reproduction. A gathering of God’s people around his Word and gifts will be impacted by those very people, and so it will display a unique character as the blessings of God impact a particular people in a particular time and place. This means that every congregation will have its own ethos that permeates how it worships, makes decisions, and views itself in the cultural landscape.

By Cindy Koch

Sugar, spice, and everything nice—what are little girls made of? As a mother to four little girls, I have undoubtedly asked this question since the day they were born. Parents are created to encourage and teach their children to the best of their ability. And for years I have asked this question of each daughter: Who is she? Who will she become? What makes this little person?

By Scott Keith

Early Life and Education:

Philip(p) was born to George and Barbara Schwarzerdt in Bretten in 1497. Philip had four siblings: Anna (1499), Georg (1500 or 1501), Margarete (1506), and Barbara (1508). All were born in his grandparents’ house in the Electoral Saxon Residential town of Bretten. Melanchthon’s father, Georg Schwarzerdt, born in Heidelberg, was a master of gunnery founding and was skilled in forging lightweight, durable armor. Because of his skills, Georg was elevated to the office of electoral master of armorer and thus needed to remain in Heidelberg. Melanchthon’s mother, Barbara, came from the wealthy merchant family of Reuter.

By Ross Engel

When Paul first approached me to be a part of The Jagged Word, his initial request was simply for me to run a campaign that would raise money for seminarians to enjoy a drink with their friends and buy them a book or two to help them prepare for ministry. I was excited to be invited into The Jagged Word family and to have a greater share in this brotherhood. Now, the Bell Ringer fund is a rather simple task. I show up at the two seminaries once a year, try to meet as many of the students as I can, enjoy a few drinks, get to know a few of the guys, and then pick a deserving young man to be the beneficiary of the Bell Ringer fund. (By the way, you can still donate to the Bell Ringer Fund for young Gabe! I’m hoping to raise $500 for this great future pastor!)