Jim Daly is an expert in fatherhood—in part because his own fathers failed him so badly. His biological dad was an alcoholic. His stepfather deserted him. His foster father accused him of trying to kill him. All were out of Jim’s life by the time he turned 13. Isn’t it ironic—and so reminiscent of the God who loves to surprise us—that the president of Focus on the Family came from such a background?
In his new book The Good Dad: Becoming the Father You Were Meant to Be (which I helped him write), Daly tells readers through his own experiences and expertise how they can succeed in the areas his father figures failed. This book is not about becoming a perfect father. It’s about trying to become a better one. It’s about building relationships with your children through love, patience and fun—and helping them grow into the men and women God wants them to be.
What do God and the Caped Crusader have in common? While Batman is a secular superhero patrolling the fictional streets of Gotham City, his story creates multiple opportunities for believers to talk about the redemptive spiritual truths of Christianity. The book touches on Batman’s many incarnations over the last 70 years in print, on television, and at the local Cineplex for the enjoyment of Batman fans everywhere. But it primarily focuses on Christopher Nolan’s two wildly popular and critically acclaimed movies—movies that not only introduced a new generation to a darker Batman, but are also loaded with spiritual meaning and redemptive metaphors.
BATMAN TALE, AURORA SHOOTING REFLECT DEEPER MORALITY TALE
It reads like the scene from a Christopher Nolan Batman movie. A man, heavily armed and wearing a bulletproof vest, opens fire on a theater full of innocents, killing 12 people and wounding scores of others. Officials find signs his apartment may be booby trapped — trip wires tied to what appear to be homemade bombs. When police remove the killer’s gas mask, they discover the suspect — 24-year-old James Holmes — has dyed his hair red. READ MORE
The drums wept, low and loud. As a child, Wesley Stafford heard them as he lay on his cot, sweating in the West African night. He knew the drums' language: Sometimes they warned when strangers were coming, sometimes they laughed during festivals. On some nights, the drums beat out obituaries: eulogies for children who died from snake-bites, from malaria, from measles. The drums marked the passing of Stafford's childhood friends. And, on his cot, tears would roll down his cheeks and into his ears and, with the drums still beating, he'd drift off to sleep. READ MORE
We love our stories. How could we not? We’re made of ’em—far more than we’re made of the skinful of chemicals and DNA strands we lug around. Sure, genetics plays a role in what I’m good at and what I look like. But who I am—who I really am—is far more dependent on that time my parents took me to Disneyland as a surprise, or that day I hiked up Pikes Peak in a lightning storm, or that moonlit stroll I took with my wife-to-be. In a sense, I am my stories. And because we’re all brimming with stories of our own, we love to hear other people’s, too. They entertain. They inspire. They teach—even if we don’t always realize what they’re teaching. READ MORE
Smash! Blam! Kablooie! Forget what Tina Turner sang: We do need another hero. Several, actually, judging from the number of comic book stories-turned-blockbusters over the past few years--not to mention to upcoming "Iron Man 2" and "The Green Hornet". Sure, these superhero flicks make for good popcorn fare. But lately, our on-screen champions have peddled more than cool costumes and CGI wizardry. They form a crucible for how the rest of us grapple with adversity, morality, and faith. READ MORE
Big Hollywood: Talk about the origin of the book. Is this topic something that's been on your mind for years, or did something help trigger the connection between Batman and Christianity? Paul Asay: It’s funny, actually: When I first started toying with the idea of a book linking superheroes with spirituality, I wasn’t thinking much about Batman at all. I write reviews for an online Christian publication ... READ MORE