50 Relatively True Sentences


Ernest Hemingway once said of writing: You only need one true sentence.

Here are fifty or so that are ringing true to me these days:

Privilege is like a stain on the back of your shirt. If you have it you can’t see it, and you need a good person to tell you.

Before you become a parent, no one prepares you for the profoundly bittersweet experience of watching your children grow up.

You will never regret waiting to send an angry communication. The added time always brings wisdom.

Few things strike fear and generate anger in the hearts of many American Christians quite like the actual words of Jesus.

Silence is the single most wasted resource our souls will ever have.

Loving all people can get you killed. That’s why so few people risk it. (See: Jesus, MLK, JFK)

You don’t just have a midlife crisis once. You’re always smack-dab in the middle of your life—and quite often in crisis.

God will always be more loving, forgiving, and compassionate than God’s people. Thankfully.

You have two commodities in this life: time and money. One of them you can make more of once it’s gone. Fiercely cherish the other.

When you’re younger you just tell your body what to do and it does it. The older you get the more it becomes a protracted negotiation involving promises of naps and fried foods.

Everyone says they love diversity, until real diversity shows up at the door looking for a home. Then there’s often no room in the inn.

When someone is grieving, the best words usually are silent presence.

Marriage isn’t a feeling or an event. Marriage is a choice; to relentlessly endure, forgive, work—and stay.

Social media has forced us to design and broadcast amazing lives that we no longer have time to actually live.

The more I seek God outside of organized religion, the larger the table of my hospitality becomes.

Losing your job is always better than selling your soul, though certainly not as cost-effective.

Conservative and Progressive Christian activists have a frighteningly similar capacity for intolerance and prejudice.

The most ordinary moments are the ones that become the greatest treasures when you lose someone you love. Turns out nothing is really ordinary.

You rarely look back at your younger self and determine that you were wiser then, than you are now. Remember that now and move humbly.

Discrimination over gender identity and sexual orientation is the last widely acceptable prejudice left in the Church.

Parenting is not a cause and effect endeavor. Sometimes your kids will fail despite your best efforts, and succeed despite your most regrettable mistakes.

Politics is the lowest kind of religion; the kind that deifies people who agree with you.

When people don’t like the place you’ve evolved to they will label your new position as inconsistency. You know better. You now it’s growth.

Love is the thing people crave and reject with equal passion.

When you grieve someone’s loss, you never “get on with your life” you just live fundamentally altered.

To a parent, few things smell as sweet as your child’s head.

Every single one of us creates a God slightly or greatly in our own image.

The music you listen to in high school and college will never stop being your music.

I’m no longer sure if the blessings religion brings outweigh the wounds it causes—and this really bums me out.

God is like the ocean. You can’t explain it to people if they haven’t experienced it. Once they experience it, you don’t need to explain it.

Most of us spend our entire adult lives trying to become either exactly like or nothing like our parents.

If you remove the fear from many Christian’s theology they won’t have much theology left.

I now divide my life into two very distinct sections: before and after my father’s death.

Parenting isn’t about perfection, it’s about presence. Show up and keep showing up. That is success.

People who are being hateful in the name of religion rarely realize it. They almost always genuinely think they are pleasing God while doing incredible damage.

There’s just something about the F-word that does what no other word can do, in so many instances. Adults understand.

No matter how old you get and how much you accomplish, you’ll always want your parents to be proud of you.

If you can’t affirm what you believe without belittling someone else, you’ve got a really lousy testimony.

The most difficult place to be at any given moment is here and now.

If you ask someone how they are and then really listen, you’ll be astounded at what happens in each of you.

On date night with your spouse, you will celebrate finally escaping your children—by talking about them all evening.

At some point in your adult life, the amount of your earlier life that you’ve forgotten will make you weep.

Sooner or later many Christians are going to need to own their bigotry, fear, and prejudice—and stop blaming Jesus for it.

If you realized how quickly your children would grow up, you’d give them candy whenever they asked for it.

You have no idea the massive ripples your life makes in both beautiful and terrible ways.

If flatulence ceases to be funny, know that your soul has died.

God is not out to squash you. God’s people sometimes, but never God.

Depression is like having a squatter in your head; showing up uninvited, trashing the place, and refusing to leave.

Every wise and good thing has probably already been said before. Make the effort anyway.

The greatest thing you can do for someone, the most Jesus-like, most God-honoring thing is to err on the side of loving then.

Many people are hanging by the very thinnest of threads. If you treat them well, without knowing—you may very well be that thread.

You are always more loved and more blessed than you realize.

Despite what anyone will tell you, all Truth is relative. I’m sure this list proves it.



41 thoughts on “50 Relatively True Sentences

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