A grateful Hall of Famer and four other things I read this week.

Tim Duncan and Greg Popovich, a compelling Christian testimony, and Tim Keller on forgiveness. Also: a beautiful and tragic story about World War II

This week the NBA Hall of Fame class that was elected in 2020 had their delayed (because of COVID) enshrinement ceremony. I love watching Hall of Fame speeches because, like losing Presidential candidate speeches (well most of them, anyways), you get a glimpse of the real person behind the celebrity. This class featured Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett, and the late Kobe Bryant.

Duncan was a quiet player most of his career. He was called The Big Fundamental because he was just, well, solid and played fundamentally sound basketball at the highest possible level. In my view, he’s one of the top ten best players of all time.

What made Duncan’s time in the NBA special was the relationship he had with his coach, Greg Popovich. Here is a clip of his speech where he thanked his longtime coach:

Coming Back to Faith

I loved this compelling story of a person who left the faith of his youth and experimented with quite a few other religions before coming home to Christianity. It’s a wonderfully written piece at First Things.

The Loss of Forgiveness

Tim Keller wrote a powerful piece about the loss of forgiveness in our culture. He makes the argument that we are returning in some form to a “shame and honor” society in ways we may not even realize. Do give it a read.

Italy in World War II

I just finished this powerful, beautiful and yet tragic novel about life in Italy during World War II. This features families in an Italian town, suddenly riven by the encroaching Nazi regime. It describes the impact of the “race laws” that gradually stole away freedom, then the lives of the Jewish residents of Italy.

Understanding the Middle East Conflict

David French has a helpful piece outlining what is happening in Israel. There are so many competing narratives, David’s explainer helps us understand.

On My Podcast:

This week on my podcast I have the amazing Rebekah McLaughlin, who is the author of several books, including Confronting Christianity. She has a new book out, written specifically for teens. In this we discuss:

  • How to answer the most common objections to Christianity

  • Why some of the criticism of Christians is based on Christian theology

  • How to talk to teens who are wrestling with the Christian faith

Give it a listen.

Also if you miss my long-form essays here at One Little Word, I will have one later this week and also a big and exciting announcement about this newsletter. Watch your inbox.

As always, if you are interested in my latest books, you can order here.

The Characters of Christmas
The Characters of Easter
A Way With Words
The Dignity Revolution

photo credit: Geof Livingston