Engaging Story in Lifelong Relationships

This week, Cathy Loerzel is our impromptu host as she facilitates a conversation between Dan Allender and his friend of nearly five decades, Scotty Smith, a pastor, writer, and consultant. You’ll get to listen in on how we can engage our stories as we age and how we can share those stories with others over the years. This conversation might make you feel like you’re sitting around a cozy table with close friends; we hope you enjoy it.

About Our Guest

Scotty Smith, a native of Graham, North Carolina, is a graduate of The University of North Carolina, Westminster Theological Seminary (where he met Dan in 1975), and Covenant Theological Seminary (D. Min). Scotty is founding pastor and pastor emeritus of Christ Community Church, Franklin, TN, which he pastored for 26 years. He presently serves as Teacher in Residence of West End Community Church, a daughter church of CCC. He also serves as adjunct faculty for Covenant Seminary, St Louis, MO. Scotty has authored ten books, including: Searching for Grace (with Russ Masterson), Unveiled Hope (with Michael Card), Objects of His Affection, Speechless, and Restoring Broken Things (both with Steven Curtis Chapman), and Everyday Prayers: 365 Days to Gospel Centered Faith. Among his hobbies, Scotty enjoys photography, fishing, cooking and walking 7 miles a day. Scotty and his wife of 49 years, Darlene, continue to live in Franklin, TN, where both of their children and four grandchildren live.
You can follow Scotty’s daily blog at thegospelcoalition.org or follow him on Twitter @scottywardsmith

Episode Transcript

​​Dan: Well, Cathy Loerzel and I have the immense privilege of promoting our book again. That’s what we’re doing. We’re promoting our book, but we’re sneaky and we’re gonna do that by a significant conversation with one of my dearest friends, Scotty Smith. Scotty. Welcome. I’m gonna introduce you in a moment, but you can say you’re really glad to be here.

Scotty: Thank you. Yeah. It’s good for me to speak so people can get used to a North Carolina redneck accent.

Dan: Yeah. A brilliant, you know, like a lot of so called Southern speakers that maybe to, um, ignorant northerners may not sound exactly, uh, whatever, but are brilliant beyond words. So let me just say that Scotty and I, uh, have been friends for 47 years and in and through a lot of gospel wild experiences. So Scotty, you have been a founding pastor of one of the largest and most prestigious and powerful gospel churches in Nashville. Uh, you are currently a, I don’t know what to call you beyond a peripatetic presence of wisdom on behalf of really, uh, the music industry, uh, the publishing industry, uh, every denizen uh, Nashville and beyond. So just put a few words to your existence.

Scotty: Well, that that’s a loaded question. And at the same time, a, a really unique opportunity just to talk about truly our friendship, which we will in this interaction and so awesome to have Cathy to pursue us both and to pull us out. But yeah, I will be 72 in three weeks. So that kind of marks me chronologically as a guy that’s, uh, closer to heaven than I was even a year ago, but so thankful to be in a season that has less stress and therefore more opportunity to reflect more deeply, not simply on my story and the redeeming of pain, but to walk with a bunch of leaders in many different contexts that need exactly what you and Cathy have done in this remarkable work and what you do prior to the book, by how you have chosen to live your lives. So I’m glad to be part of that.

Dan: So anything you wanna add about your bio, for folks who may not know you? I, I, one of the things that if people actually have read Redeeming Heartache, uh, they will have encountered, uh, at least a few sentences about how life giving your writing, your life, and you know, the, the daily devotional is one of those gifts that, uh, goes along with a lot of other of your writings. But, um, well

Scotty: That, even that as a part of God’s great sense of humor as he always exercises, I never read a complete book until after I graduate from high school and I’ve written 10. So it’s just like go figure a lot of my life now has me, um, painting with words and, for a guy that, um, just has struggled to really have, uh, a, a gift of reading and lingering in the text until much later in my journey. So.

Dan: So Cathy, what we’re gonna do, I forgot to tell you, this is, let me interview let you interview, uh, both of us, but primarily Scotty.

Cathy: Oh, I’m so glad to know that as we’re recording the podcast, that’s wonderful. That’s, I, I, I have a bit of a background in improv and so this is just thrilling. Um, but for, for those of you who have ever heard Dan speak, it is, it’s rare to be at a conference where some sort of story about Scotty Smith, isn’t part of the teaching. And so again, it is a thrill to have you here, Scotty, and, you know, you’ve been kind of a legend in, in my world where I knew your name far before I had the, the privilege of seeing you in person and knowing just how influential you’ve been to Dan, um, and so supportive of his journey and this work. So really grateful to have you and, and welcome.

Scotty: Thank you, Cathy. It is a true gift to be here and to get some interaction with you.

Cathy: Yeah, I’m excited.

Dan: So what, what direction do you wanna go, Cathy? 

Cathy: Well, as I’ve had 3.5 seconds to think about it, um, I would really like to know, I, I think Dan given the work that, that we do in this book, you know, we’re, we’re setting out this six types. So the, the, and, and really ending on the priest, prophet and king categories. So I just… given your history and how long you all have known each other. Um, when you think of one another, where do you place yourselves or each other, um, on the priest, prophet and king, uh, category?

Dan: Well, let, let me start with this. Uh, Scotty is an orphan, uh, and has known, uh, something of what it means, uh, to face death at a very, very perilously young day. And he is truly a stunning priest, his ability to hold, remember connect stories. Uh, it it’s, you know, I, I mean, I could go back truly 45 years to 1975 and how he engaged my life and story. Uh, and not to say I’m an easy man today, but I was a much more difficult human being, uh, 47 years ago. Uh, so I think that would be the beginning point to say, Scotty, how, how have you seen the interplay of your own orphan heart and, uh, the reality of your gift, not merely with words, but your gift to enter the words of others?

Scotty: Well, it’s, it’s impossible to respond to that Dan, apart from, as we’ve already documented here, our chronology ‘cuz uh, we started, um, seminary. I came a semester after you began, but in uh, 1975, when I first laid eyes on you, you were a very odd child, a mysterious man who seemed to be just kind of hiding behind Tremper, waiting for some opportunity to, um, not be exposed and, and you know, but, but the, the truth I know now, as you know, I was looking in a mirror and uh, you have absolutely intersected at the most strategic times in my life. I mean, almost comical in some ways has God laughs louder than us. Awe. But um, just, just a couple of thoughts about the orphan that absolutely I own that as has been so much of my world, but you know, you, you will remember back in, I think it was 1984 that you know, myself and three friends joined you at that frozen Tundra of Winona Lake, Indiana. And I’m the, I’m the guinea pig is the person that’s going to counsel, uh, and give us the benefit of four of your trainings and uh, pastoral reflection to watch the Damira and that person disappears. So I, you know, I foolishly volunteer and at the end of those three days, you know, you remember this story, you say to things to me, you say, number one, I’m just curious, I’m intrigued about why you keep finishing my sentences, why you have this oral diarrhea, constant running off of your mouth. So we gotta look at that and, and I can tell you this guy, you have never dealt with the impact of the death of your mom. And my first response was literally… damn, you’re good. Now, how did you get to, you know, we’ve just been doing this three days so I just completely objectify that experience. But as you know, it’ll be 16 years after that, that I finally make it back to my mom’s grave for the first time in the 40 years she’s been dead. So, you know, strategic times, just, you know, I think about that, that orphan and, uh, having a better theology of knowing better then that, but your priestly role, your, uh, you know, when I think of your kingship, you are in, you know, you have a, if kingship is, and I think about that category relationally far more as where where’s the dominion of your gifting brought to bear, and God has uniquely gifted you to, to bring, uh, out of darkness and into light those of us that are hiding, running, uh, a excusing, et cetera. And, uh, you know, all three of your gifts, you know, one of the wisest men I’ve ever met, um, your kindness for me, I mean, again, I’ll just throw a few things out there for the connections and Cathy, you can follow up on any of these. So, you know, it is in, it is in the year 2000 when I make it back to my mom’s grave for the first time, it’ll be six years later when you and I are at Taylor University together that in hearing your story, uh, you know, six years after finally, beginning to process my mom’s death and the death of a girl I dated all through high school, you are present and you give me tears the night, I’m able to articulate my story three years before my mom’s death of sexual abuse. So at the most, I mean, truly the most life shaping points you had, uh, offered me the safety I never knew in my own home and the freedom of our friendship. And, uh, and again, one more thing, cuz I, I need to listen more than I need to speak here. A lot of this took place because of the work you’d been doing with my wife, leading up to the trust that I would build with you to really let you pursue my heart. And uh, so I have brother, you are one of the most important gifts in my life. Um, not the fourth member of the Trinity, but you definitely are. You, you know, have been and are Dan I mean, you’re just, you’re just a friend and I love you. And uh, you know, one of us will commit the other to the earth. Um, and I’m just grateful for this privilege again, uh, y’all’s book your lives, your friendship with me and them in strategic times have been critical.

Dan: Well, of course, what I wanna do is put my head on my desk and just weep. Because I, I mean, I, I know all that, what you have said is true. Those were are incredibly privileged moments, but I, I, I return us actually even earlier that, you know, know, I, I, when I went to seminary, I, I had lived with some really wicked and crazy and dangerous human beings, um, at least in my past trade. Uh, but when I went to seminary, they, that was the strangest and most weird. And, and in some sense, wrongfully dangerous group of human beings and your presence for whatever strange reason, just had a sanity and an invitation to truth that was so infleshed and embodied. So I think in some ways God put, uh, uh, two very different human beings in some ways I’m an orphan, but I’m much more of a stranger. Uh, and so I think that intersection, I, I desperately needed, uh, the presence of a priest who could offer a kindness that my body, my heart just was not used to didn’t even know that I needed. And I think in some ways you needed someone who was crazier than you, uh, to, to say, you know, a lot of what we were in the middle of, even in seminary was just crazy bullshit. And yet beautiful. And I, I, I just remember many times looking at you after a class going, what the, I won’t say the word, but what the, uh, what’s going on. And, uh, I, I think in so many ways between you and Tremper, you were my primary professors. Like what I learned not to say that the others didn’t do a good job, but I just couldn’t hear them, uh, in a way that I could hear you and I could hear Tremper. So, Cathy, I’m sorry. I, I interrupted again, given that you are in charge.

Cathy: I mean, you know, how much I love being in charge, but, um, watching the two of you engage around your stories together is sweet. Um, and just a, a profound privilege to be on this, this screen, this, this time to hear, the, the intersectionality. I mean, obviously Dan you’ve put language to these categories far before we even read the book or wrote the book together. Um, but I think to see how universal these categories are, and the sense of, you know, Scotty you as a young man, being able to, um, to take something of your orphaned heart and know how important story and our names are like our purpose and who we are, and the fact that you were able to give that gift to Dan in a space where so much of Dan, you know, what I know of your world at that point is that you were, you didn’t know who you were, or, um, even your own name, right? Like you didn’t, you didn’t know the fullness of your story and the, and the death of your father and the connection to your stepfather. I mean, there’s so much of your own story at that point that would’ve caused such turmoil in your young body and for Scotty to then be able to come along, offer that priestly presence that calls you back to your name, to who you are, to your purpose on, on the earth, and to meet at such a catalytic moment as in a seminary, you know, and then to see both of your trajectories after that. And again, you know, for Dan then you to step into Scotty’s world of being able to disrupt and bring some chaos and ask more of him to step into the wild edges of his own life. Um, you know, what a sweet gift. And, and I think so much of what I love about, of the, the book and the work that we’re doing is, is that it, it gives us categories to understand some of those momentous marking moments of our lives and to say, that’s what was going on there is that, you know, in some ways your stranger and your orphan met, um, but then you propelled each other into your priests and your prophets. And, and, and that’s just lovely to, to see, um, and to, and to, to observe.

Dan: And to go as well. I, I have articulated that I, I am a prophet, but I’m not a bad priest, but, you know, the, the work of being a king, I askewed as young as age six, having to manage, uh, and move my family, my mother in particular. So I’ve always, always worked very hard to escape some of the, um, responsibilities of, of being a leader. But Scotty, you know, you might differ with me, dear, sir, but you are one of those friends that I would say, oh my gosh, your presence as a priest is stunning, but you’ve spoken, uh, levels of truth to a congregation to individuals. Uh, just to underline this, I mean, Scotty has been one of the primary significant presences of the gospel in Nashville and, and, you know, one of the most remarkable, um, innovative, uh, creative cities in the world. And I mean, if I were to begin to kind of walk through the array of people that you have been with in the middle of life and death and, uh, heartache, um, not only priestly, but prophetically calling forth the reality of who they are meant to become, but as well, you’ve run organizations you’ve created and sustained and maneuvered organizations to immense success. So you’re one of those people, whether you like it or not, that have an array of all three prophetic priestly kingly gifts. And part of my question is how, how have you lived with yourself?

Scotty: Well, I, I was gonna jump in and give you a little bit of that oral diarrhea, just interrupting you. But, uh, you know, I, when I look back when we were first together, and I think you know a little bit about what made you curious or intrigued with me, I was one of the less, uh, dangerous people when we were seminary, but you met me at a time when, and, and just parallels, you know, we had Ray Dillard and a Jack Miller. We had, we had some, we had some plants of gospel sanity and the midst of that community. And what was happening with me, the orphan in me truly was looking for a way of understanding who can narrate my crazy. And so fortunately I was not at seminary to learn a bunch of categories, but I was hearing things expressed that that prophetic part of me, the one, like you that marshalls in the realm of thought and, and, and processing, et cetera. And so you, I think you tasted in me more potential than reality. Potential at the level of, I’m hearing a larger story for which this orphan heart is desperate and because of a guy like Ray Dillard, who is so principle in your life is one profs and Jack Miller. For me, being able to move into the arena of, um, of, uh, priesthood, both receiving, which is something that I’ve resisted all my life, not thinking myself worthy to being cared for, but at some level, then beginning to be defined by over caring for people. I mean, you know, the, the way these categories interplay, um, it’s been so critical for me to see prophet, priest, and king through orphan, because I can see how at times I’ve used those categories to, um, mute the contempt of my heart and to, um, minimize the probability of more pain, but the freedom that you have called me into invited me out to play, inviting me into the world of my heart’s, my wife’s heart, you know, those categories, you know, they don’t change, but I think even our experience of them, uh, God would be, become more precious to us and less, uh, a threat, but what we participate more in. So, no, thank you. And I, I, I put on my repentance, uh, deceased deflecting, so I can acknowledge what you’re saying, because, and again, here’s a part of that you’re right. I mean, that church we planted in Franklin, which was far more about a group of people showing up hearing of this category called grace and we just pursue it, uh, personally have had never a, um, a, uh, bone in my body that wanted to build something. But when four couples become 4,000 people, you know, nothing can explain that other than the goodness of God, and that, you know, you’re beginning at different times in my life as you’re working with Darlene and then me… To invite me to say, this isn’t just a good story to tell Scotty, this is a good story for you to enter as well. So just the way those things play together, that sometimes you can only see in reverse

Dan: Yeah, but let me go back to that question, unless you’ve got another direction, Cathy, but the question of, look, you do know you’ve got an array of gifts that do, like, most of us have one that feels stronger, like priests or prophet or king or queen. And some of us know that we’re pretty weak in certain areas, but you, you have a gifting that has had a symmetry, uh, in all three. Yes. Would you not agree with that?

Scotty: I absolutely agree with it. And I think, yes, for sure. And I don’t deflect that or minimize it I’m in awe of it. Um, but I also see how, at times I, the orphan part of me as a survivor, you, you just take on what identity you need to right. To either continue. As in my story, you know, when I look at the wizard of Oz, I’ve always been comfortable seeing myself as Oz, leave me behind the damn curtains, let me push a few buttons. I’ll be nice. I’ll be green. I’ll lose my hair. But then, you know, God sends in Toto and really, Dorothy says, get down here with the rest of us. We’re all a mess. Let’s just do mess together. So really that’s what the, the shift that began and, and therefore, absolutely. I’ve been able to acknowledge, yes, God has gifted me in ways in prophet, priest and king, and I’m thankful, so thankful for the privilege of serving him and flocking with others. Yes.

Dan: And, and, and to follow that up, do you not find, and again, this could be called leading the witness, but do you not find that people who do seem to have an array, those three gifts in, in a kind of fullness are act actually in some sense crazier than the rest of us.

Scotty: Oh yeah, absolutely. And maybe you’re asking Cathy not me. So I’m sorry.

Cathy: No, I don’t have all three gifts. So I, although I still am crazy, but I, I do agree that the rarity means that, that you’re seeing the world from a different sort of perspective and being able to move out in between all three, but there, you’re also more troubled than, than the rest of us, because you’re seeing both the call of the king and the call of the prophet and the call of the priest simultaneously in your body, which, which leads to more wholeness, but also, you know, potentially more grief in terms of what the world is meant to be and are called to engage with it. And just how, how much we fall short so often,

Dan: And as well, uh, how often the result is a lot of envy from others because you, you have a place, uh, you have a power and a position and you have a gifting that can take, uh, again, I, I’m not foolish enough to think you were the reason, but you are a significant reason that it went from four couples to 4,000 people and is still one of the most significant churches in the country. So to step back and to underscore that, you know, our suffering, um, because in some ways your having been an orphan, but also you just haven’t fit, uh, in some ways, any particular culture that well, yet, because of your gifting as a leader, you have been called into positions where you not only have the power to direct, but have the power to invite others to take on the leadership they’re meant to take. So I think in some ways, uh, we often, at least, I think a lot of people look at highly gifted people with a, a certain degree of, oh, wouldn’t that be wonderful? and I think what I’m underscoring is, yeah, it really is. But, uh, you know, when you’re given 10 gifts, the 10 talents, uh, I actually call forth even greater suffering. And in some sense, greater amazement, not because of your gifting, that good things happen, but, but in all that, something of the remarkable work of the gospel shines forth.

Scotty: It’s true. And, uh, as you were just spot on summarizing that, I just, uh, remembered one of the things you spoke to me when you and Bec were still in, uh, Colorado and Darlene and I were visiting you, one, one of the things you spoke that enabled me to begin to make this shift. I remember these words you said, uh, and we were really there more for Darlene than for me, but you were smarter and you, you said this to me, and it was just kind of like, and it was one of those moments of which there have been so many thank you, heavenly Father, where you say something and your prophetic gift is there. And you said this, you said, uh, Scotty, as long as your cry for relief is louder than your cry for a changed heart, you’re just not gonna grow as a man. And, and that had no weight of shame, but again, it was that your watching someone that, you’ve known to be more safe than potential for harm ever since we first met. And yet you’re watching me be awkward and Darlene as her story’s unpacking, and she’s going to places that just threaten the orphan inside of me. And then you invite me to begin to see you’ve, you know, you’ve got this over utilitarian view of yourself. You’re not just called to do good thing for others. You’re a good man. And I did not believe that. I did not for a long time.

Dan: Well, and I think that’s, in some ways, I, I think the reality of like someone whose heart is as good as yours could like me, it really forced me to kind of think, oh, what the hell is going on? Um, maybe, maybe I’m not as bad. Uh, maybe I’m not as dangerous as I have feared, but also needed to be. And I think that’s part of the nature of almost any redemptive friendship is, is a sense of both. Oh, it fits so well. And yet it’s so weird. It, so out of what I would’ve ever presume from our earliest conversations back to you, Cathy.

Cathy: Oh my goodness. I, uh, I wish you guys could see the screens cause I’m like, I just, I literally have my, my hand on my chin. I’m leaning in cuz I just, there’s something so profound about watching the two of you age. Um, it’s, it’s rare to have a friendship that’s lasted 47 years. And, and so I, I, I Marvel at that, you know, I’m, I’ve, I’ve had 20 something year-old-friendships, but, but you’ve, you’ve doubled it. And um, and, and that’s, and that’s, that’s fairly remarkable in this day and age, I think. Um, and to be men who have been in each other’s lives and hearts in profound ways is even more staggering. Um, so as, as you think of that, and just there there’s so many of us that are coming up behind you, like, what would you say to people as they, um, they look at their own lives. Like this is a fragmented time where so many of us are isolated, you know, uh, worlds are, are an upheaval. People are leaving jobs in communities and here you two have been men who have, who have known each other’s hearts and it’s lasted for this long. Um, I mean, first I’m assuming, you know, that that’s rare. Yeah?

Scotty: Yeah, absolutely.

Cathy: Yeah. And, and then what do you like, what, what do you make of what it’s, what it’s meant for you to be that for each other, through, through all these decades?

Dan: Uh, I, I remember one of the first moments of meeting this remarkable presence of his wife, and going this is one of the strangest people I’ve encountered. And yet again, that’s, it could be heard by some as pejorative, but I mean, it is the great compliment and, and she was so, uh, again, we could do a whole podcast just on Darlene, uh, but it, it, her freedom and yet her own internal war was such that how could somebody be this free while simultaneously seeming like she’s tripping over herself and the, the compelling presence that she brings because she loves well, but so doubts her own heart to love, and then to go, like, this is one of the best meals I’ve ever had. And your question, whether you had the right ingredients, that’s nuts. Uh, and so kind of this notion that yeah, there is a relationship between the two of us, but also to have been privileged, to watch a marriage before I married, to watch people fight, struggle, pray, weep, and yet grow. I can remember watching their marriage and going, I think I might get married. I, I like if, if, if these two people can make a marriage and maybe, maybe, maybe I might be as well. So I think in some ways it, you will never have a good relationship with someone until you admire them. Uh, until in some sense, you know, only too well that you are being invited into a relationship you do not, deserve to receive. And I always had that feeling, not so much, like I’m nothing but more like, oh my gosh, there is such life here, such goodness here. And can I just, can I hang out for an hour and just taste something of the refreshing presence of honesty, a brokenness, and yet hope the compelling presence of being able to hold the reality that we are broken. And we are beautiful. I saw that not only in Scotty, not only in Darlene, but in their marriage. So I think that’s one of the things I would say with regard to friendships, if you don’t admire that person, admire that person, then you’re not gonna really, uh, remain in a relationship over 47 years.

Scotty: Yeah. Amen to that. And of course, as you’re talking about friendship with Darlene and truly the God given space, um, the Lord puts you to invite her into processing the pain, et cetera. Um, when Beck did enter, when Becky did enter the story, I just think of the four of us in terms of the uniqueness of how, uh, we have learned together really risk or rust, you know, one of those many Jack Miller little, one liners that carry the weight of the 10 commandments of grace risk or rust. So I think Cathy even shaping that in terms of your query, uh, yeah, there’s a lot of fear. There’s a lot of isolation, pre-COVID, COVID, et cetera. And I think that’s a word that I can look at the four of us, Dan and Becky and Darlene and I, I’d say we would far rather risk the ocean of grace than rust upon the hinges of excuse making blame, shifting never being willing to wonder, uh, is there a seat at the banquet for me. And, um, Dan, you know, his, his gifts were coming together in a fashion that before his own heart was able to fully catch up with it. And I think that’s a part of the giftings of God. So I got to watch him love my wife into health and it intimidated the bejeebees out of me but I needed to see it in the process before I could be willing to enter it myself. And that’s really for all four of us, how that continues to play out. I mean…

Cathy: Hmm. I love that I’ve never heard the, the risk or rust thing, but I’m definitely using it from here on out. I will quote you.

Scotty: Well, you can quote me, but you know, most, most of truly, most as, as again, we’ve mentioned a few key people who could name others, but, you know, Ray Dillard, this Old Testament, remarkable human being that called Dan to life. And from me, it was a different professor. Jack Miller. Jack was the freest most dangerous man I’ve met in my life and, uh, grace wrecked him and put a man together. And, and that was just one of the things he looked at me in the eye and said, one day, Scotty, risk or rust. You know, you gonna, will you live or will you stay in the orphanage of your own fear and self-contempt. And so it was, you know, for the Lord to give me, uh, Dan and Jack Miller. I mean, I’m just one of the richest people you have ever met.

Dan: Well, let’s be real clear here. Uh, I met Jack while he was interacting with about 20 students and Tremper and I were, it was the very first convocation, literally my first encounter with this thing called, uh, you know, seminary. And I was listening him and Tremper was drawing, being drawn into this. And I, I grabbed Tremper and I said, let’s get the hell outta here. Why, why, like, like this man’s amazing. And I said, this man could get me to go to places that I could die in. And I literally, I, you know, unrighteously, I grabbed Tremper and we, we got out of there and, and Scotty, wild and crazy man, like invested, went to Uganda, went to places where literally there is warfare outside the door of where they are staying. So let’s just underscore, I went with a brilliant, compelling, but Old Testament scholar who, um, did not take me, took me to Israel, but not to Uganda. You, you wanna comment on that Scotty, other than to say, at least I know danger a lot better than you.

Scotty: Well, you know. Listen, you’re truly, you, you weigh into danger that makes you gone to look like a sandbox in Palo Alto. I mean, listen,

Dan: We’re gonna debate this, you had way more heart to enter into a wild man’s life. Yes, absolutely. I am not in any way diminishing the glory and wonder of Ray Dillard. No, but between the two, uh, I chose the more sane. Yeah.

Scotty: Well, and, and let me just give one image, because it, it plays into y’alls book and how these different categories, are far less categories, far more ways of understanding the good heart of God towards us and, and us and around us. But you know, when I first met Jack Miller, you know, I got the little card, this is gonna be your professor of record. I go knock on his door and I don’t know the name him I’m bummed out. I don’t get one of the big bubble gum card theologians. And so knock on his door. He, he was a, and he opened this door and I put up my hand to introduce myself and he undercut my hand, put his arms around my back, pulled me into his heart and did not let go for 21 years. And so that was safe danger. I mean, it was like, okay, here’s this starts for me in something I’ve never known before, touch from a man that’s safe and someone that would really, um, laugh and have the most disarming laugh that had more power to make me want to be different than if someone just got in my face and just, uh, shamed me, so.

Dan: Well, we, we can say Cathy that the two of us, uh, have had some of the sweetest and best human beings engage us in our, um, raw, maybe we’re diamonds, but let’s just say in, in a state that looked a lot more like coal, uh, than a needing to be polished diamond. And I think that’s, again, one of the gifts to be able to say is, you know, there are a whole lot of people used for the kingdom that do not look at least initially, like they’re gonna amount to a whole lot, uh, and, and those that do look like they’re going to amount, praise God for them. But, um, I think it is, uh, something of the delight of God to use the small, the unpredicted, and in some ways the less likely, and, uh, I would say of the two of us, um, we are, we are men that have been, um, captured, um, need to be even more so, but captured by, uh, the wildness of Jesus. And to think that we are still engaged in being loved and loving and being captured further, uh, for the sake of the gospel. I, I just know that in part, I wanna be faithful for Jesus, but I also wanna say, I, I don’t want to disappoint my friend Scotty. Absolutely. Same way, very mutual, all that leads us again, to be able to say what a gift be together. And thank you. Thank you, Scotty. And thank you, Cathy, for this play.

Cathy: It’s good to be with you both. Thank you.