A salty dog


Salty Dog – a cocktail drink originally with gin, grapefruit juice and salt on the rim.

Salty Dog – a nickname for an ornery sailor who has spent much of his or her life aboard a ship at sea.


Being the salt of the earth could mean a lot of things. No one is 100% sure about exactly what Jesus meant when He called us the salt of the earth, but I like to think there is some grit involved. Salt is an abrasive. In Jesus’ day it was rubbed into meat to keep it from spoiling (certainly one of the top contenders for what Jesus meant in regards to preserving truth in the world). An older rendering of salty dog came from rubbing salt into a dog’s coat as a flea repellent. And “rubbing salt into a wound” came from ancient Egypt when after flogging someone, they would rub salt into the sounds to inflight more pain, thus the definition, “to make a difficult situation even worse.” Jesus did this often to the Pharisees. He was caustic with them, calling them “snakes,” “blind guides,” and “whitewashed tombs.” Not exactly how you would want to endear yourself to someone.

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The salt of the earth


“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.” Matthew 5:13

This verse has always puzzled me. I’m going to try to put some pieces together for all of us. 

First, we know Jesus is speaking to His true followers here, as opposed to the religious leaders who are presumed by the people to be the righteous ones. Jesus says that His followers are different. They are poor in spirit; they hunger and thirst for righteousness because they know they don’t have any of their own; they mourn over their own sin; they are meek and humble (the opposite of proud); they are peacemakers; when they are persecuted, they love their enemies, they turn the other cheek and go the extra mile. Jesus started preaching at a time when righteousness had been usurped by the Pharisees, and He was putting it back into the hands of simple folk, because righteousness cannot be achieved, it can only be received, and the ones who receive it are those who ask for it, not those who presume they have it or have earned it. This much we know.

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Happy Birthday, Peter Herschend


by John & Marti Fischer

We are taking this opportunity to acknowledge a man who has single-handedly influenced the Catch more than any other. As our first Chairman of the Board, and working closely with Marti, Peter has left his mark everywhere — on our vision, our mission/purpose, and on what it means to be the Catch Ministry, which is well beyond a daily writing. Working along with the other Board of Directors, he worked diligently to form the vision of the Catch Ministry: to introduce the Gospel of Welcome — Grace Turned Outward — to everyone, everywhere, giving us a distinctive and universal voice of grace being manifested through your and my ‘boots on the ground’ throughout the world. Peter envisioned and stayed to see the Catch Ministry as a real worldwide community of Christian people participating in God’s business by introducing the Gospel of Welcome — Grace Turned Outward — through the gifts God has given. “In the end,” Peter is noted as saying, “a local Christian community could never really reach the whole world with the Gospel’s message. But … the Catch can.” 

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Grace Turned Outward — a dynamic story


Susan Burton is a hero. What she has done with her life is extraordinary, although she would deny that. She would simply say, in her own words, that her life is just Grace Turned Outward.

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‘… and also many animals’


I woke up yesterday morning to find that Emily, one of our Chihuahuas and the smallest one at barely five pounds, had died in her sleep. It wasn’t a surprise. In fact, a daily dose of steroids was what kept her alive for the last few months. We always knew when she needed more prednisone; she would just fall over.  Even with that, she had been in decline. She couldn’t always keep her tongue in her mouth, and she would list when she walked as if she’d had too much to drink. Nevertheless, she carried on as usual being curious and feisty as ever. Continue reading

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Burning (Straw) Man



Burning Man

I’m having a hard time getting rid of something I don’t want anymore. I may need your help. It’s my evangelical awareness. It haunts me like a small cloud that follows me everywhere, or like a straw man who whispers over my shoulder when I’m writing, “Don’t say this.” “Don’t even imply that; they won’t like it.”

I can remember when my spell checker didn’t even know what an evangelical was. That’s because evangelicals were the only ones who cared about what an evangelical was. Now everyone thinks they know what an evangelical is because the modern media has co-opted the term to mean something political.

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Doing the right thing


It seems like Chandler and I spent the better part of this long Thanksgiving weekend — at least Sunday bleeding into yesterday — switching cell phone carriers. We got what we wanted but not without a few headaches in the process. I do not have a technological bone in my body. Just teach me the steps to work it; don’t expect me to know how it works. Poor Chandler, at numerous junctures, grew frustrated with me because I kept asking them to explain something and when I couldn’t understand their explanation, I asked them to explain it again. I’m sure I contributed to everyone’s headache.

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Picking up a little color


Aleshea Harris

empathy – the ability to understand and share the feelings of another

With the long holiday weekend, I took the liberty of spending a little more time with the morning paper than I usually do. For some reason I was led to stories of the lives of people quite different from me. Whether this was the intent of the editors to broaden our understanding of diverse people and cultures or just the way it happened, I somehow found these stories throughout and decided the experience was significant enough to share a little of it with you.

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