I’m a twentysomething moderate Baptist who grew up in the middle of the Baptist wars and who consequently has very little patience for the melding of faith and politics in either the church or the government. I believe the Bible calls us to humbly pursue justice for the oppressed and mercy for the downtrodden. I hate that Christians sometimes hate one another.

My family has been in Texas since she was a Republic. I come from farmers and oil field workers, nurses and teachers, cowboys and suburban professionals, and preachers’ kids with wild streaks you wouldn’t believe. I’ve moved away from Texas twice and moved back to Texas twice. The last time, I got out at the border, kissed the ground, and vowed never to leave again. I love great music, good books, spending time with good friends, college football, two-stepping, and whitewater rafting. I am a good listener, writer, and teacher. I give lectures, write exams, grade papers, and try to give good advice. I listen to KEXP.

I lived in Kenya when I was twenty and it changed me forever. I am writing a dissertation about the DR Congo. I go to central Africa for several months about once a year. In the Congo, I have seen the very best and the very worst that people can do to each other. I still believe that everyone is created in God’s image, and I still wonder why God does not save innocents from the effects of evil. I try to use words to share the stories of Congo on this blog. I do not speak for the Congolese. They are not voiceless.

I miss Texas when I’m in the Congo and the Congo when I’m in Texas. I don’t know where life is headed, but it will always involve big ideas, concrete expressions of justice, and working with students. I believe in good manners, loving our neighbors all over the world, and the separation of church and state. I love that the truth sets you free, but I wonder about the “then” in that sentence. I know that love, real love, has nothing to do with fear. I am loved. And I am not afraid.

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