About David Browder

I am the Rector of St. Thomas' Episcopal Church in Houston, TX. I am also married to a beautiful woman and we have two strapping young sons.

http://www.stthomashouston.org

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    Star Wars Reticence

    Star Wars Reticence

    On this site, it is hard to miss the emphasis on God’s grace and our passivity. Grace as God’s overriding disposition toward the human condition in Christ and passivity as suffering the work of an interested and loving God on His people. All of the grace, celebration, joy, redemption, and catharsis we receive rest on The Great Ending of One Finished Act of God we suffer… an act we observe and hear about instead of work to bring to pass. This Great Ending is the basis of all of our mining on Mockingbird.

    So, count me as one who is deeply…

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    Reflections on a Notched Gun from Selma

    Reflections on a Notched Gun from Selma

    Over the summer, my father gave me an old, Smith & Wesson Model 10 .38 revolver. His father, who received it as a gift from his best friend, gave it to him. Family lore has it that my grandfather’s friend took it from someone else in an apparent altercation. What makes this interesting is the revolver itself and the historical context in which it existed. On the wooden handle, there are five notches… four parallel notches with a fifth crossing them out. Now, that could mean anything… squirrels, rats… but the heyday of this revolver came in the mid-20th Century…

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    The Subtle Horror of Mad Men

    The Subtle Horror of Mad Men

    Mad Men is a horror series. There… I said it. I didn’t believe this until recently. My impression was that it was a dark and brooding drama about the desperate and horny realities of life. This was until I had a conversation with a woman who could not watch the show. “Not watch Mad Men?” I thought… “How could you not watch Mad Men?” “You don’t understand,” she said… “Watching Mad Men to me is like watching horror movies to you.”

    That registered with me because I am a notoriously scaredy-cat horror movie-viewer. I fidget, cover my eyes like a kid, and furiously…

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    Court of Grace

    Some astounding verse from my good friend Hank Wall, Esquire from Columbia, SC…

    Court of Grace

    A court of grace would have no laws, but brim with broken hearts,

    and flowing there, on stoney ground, would run a crimson tide,

    a tide of love, a tide of tears, in thanks for sacrifice,

    and flowing from the open doors, this tide would be poured out…

    a river of new, unending healing balm, forgiving every doubt…

    awash in answer to His prayers, His mercies, inside-out.

    Knocked Unconscious, Part II

    Knocked Unconscious, Part II

    In the 1950’s, while Great Britain was trying to quickly put World War II behind it, Hammer Horror Studios was doing the nation a great service by doing the opposite in attempting to integrate the suffering it had endured with its present consciousness. The nation had seen two devastating wars, a collapse of its empire, an extraordinary loss of fathers for its children, and a seemingly first-time questioning of its potency and virility.  But the art of that period reflected a desire for Ozzie and Harriet denial rather than soul-searching sorrow.

    Except for Hammer, that is. In 1959, the studio released its…

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    A Sinner’s College Football Preview

    A Sinner’s College Football Preview

    University of Alabama nose tackle, Jessie Williams, bench-pressed 600 pounds earlier this summer. 600 pounds. That means he bench-pressed the equivalent of two very large interior offensive linemen. This, along with his surprising quickness, bodes extremely well for Williams’s prospects of occupying more than one offensive lineman (thus leaving at least one of our linebackers unblocked) per snap.

    Why does this excite me? Because I am a sinner. I am a sinner’s sinner.  Allow me to explain. When autumn approaches, I go against all theological rationale and wrap myself in the identity that was given to me at birth… that of…

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    Knocked Unconscious, Part I

    Knocked Unconscious, Part I

    When things begin to get real, accurate diagnosis and a true acknowledgment of the situation are typically forthcoming… at least, earnestly desired. This is unswervingly true when one’s own self-interest is at stake.

    In a recent Wall Street Journal article entitled “What’s in Your Blind Spot”, one’s own financial future and legacy are at stake with respect to “blind spots” and their potential impediment to advancement. The article encourages people with “great expectations” of leadership to utilize tools that enable greater self-knowledge… especially self-knowledge with respect to faults. Implied here is the idea that these business leaders possess unconscious faults that…

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    Sympathy for the Elder Brother

    Sympathy for the Elder Brother

    In keeping with the excellent article by Tullian Tchividjian over on the Gospel Coalition site about being self-righteous toward the self-righteous; a song by singer/songwriter Chris Knight came to mind. The title of this post was chosen in order to bring to mind the parallels between sympathy toward “elder brother”-types and sympathy for a more insidious character.

    Sometimes we tend to believe the elder brother and “that more insidious character” are one in the same but they are not. Elder brother religion is simply a different manifestation of the same sin nature that produces profound prodigal waywardness. From a standpoint of…

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    When Happiness Stalks You: Get Huge Like The Hulk!

    When Happiness Stalks You: Get Huge Like The Hulk!

    For I would have you know, brothers, that the gospel that was preached by me is not man’s gospel. – Galatians 1:11

    In honor of the release of The Avengers this week, Muscle & Fitness Magazine has fortified us with another brilliant analogy of the impossibility and allure of the unattainable.  This month’s issue sports an impressive picture of The Incredible Hulk right next to the promising tagline: “Get huge like the Hulk with our real-life routine!”  The article exposes the incredibly neurotic belief that happiness always lies at the next level up.  Funny how it is always just beyond your grasp.

    Speakeasy…

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    The Law Kills: A Day in the Life of Werner Herzog’s Housekeeper

    The Law Kills: A Day in the Life of Werner Herzog’s Housekeeper

    In keeping with Werner Herzog discussing chickens (one of the funniest clips of all time), we now have a letter the famed filmmaker wrote to his housekeeper. I will delay no longer.

    Rosalina. Woman.

    You constantly revile me with your singular lack of vision. Be aware, there is an essential truth and beauty in all things. From the death throes of a speared gazelle to the damaged smile of a freeway homeless. But that does not mean that the invisibility of something implies its lack of being. Though simpleton babies foolishly believe the person before them vanishes when they cover their eyes…

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    Who Put That Hole in My Bucket? The Difference Between Bruce Springsteen and Hank Williams

    Who Put That Hole in My Bucket? The Difference Between Bruce Springsteen and Hank Williams

    A few weeks ago, DZ brought our attention to the terrific keynote speech given by Bruce Springsteen at this year’s South by Southwest festival in Austin, TX this past March, in which he basically spent an hour going over his musical influences. It’s really great. At about the 37 minute-mark, he begins to talk about country music and (one of my heroes) Hank Williams. Says The Boss:

    I remember sitting in my little apartment, listening to Hank Williams Greatest Hits over and over. And I was trying to crack his code because at first it just didn’t sound good to me….

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    Coal: The Power of the Good Father

    Coal: The Power of the Good Father

    In the (by now quite famous in our circles) series of talks given at The Cathedral of the Advent by Professor Rod Rosenbladt on the subject of fatherhood, one of the first insights presented was that of Helmut Thielicke’s The Waiting Father. In this, his work on Jesus’s parables, Thielicke artfully and tragically describes modern man’s belief that he is quite alone in a dark universe ambivalent to his existence:

    Man is walking through the dark forest of life in the gloom of night. Specters are lurking all around him and strange sounds disquiet him. The dark forest is full of…

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