Richard Paul Matsch is from Burlington, Iowa. He attended the University of Michigan. He believes in the time-honored virtues of integrity and courage and loyalty and patriotism. Richard Matsch is probably a great-grandfather by now at age 84, but he has known heartache from the loss of his daughter at an early age.
But you may want to mock Richard Paul Matsch and call him cruel and unjust. You see, Mr. Matsch was the federal judge who sentenced Timothy McVeigh to death by lethal injection.
Is Richard Paul Matsch an sadistic person whose power enabled him to send a man to the death chamber?
No, Judge Matsch is a good man. A man of moral character who acted on principle and law, and a family man who had no personal vendetta against Timothy McVeigh.
Is God unjust and cruel because he will have to sentence people to hell? No.

Palming the Universe


You are beautiful, O God

above all artistry or design

You are décor never before imagined, spendidly alone

You were before anything else was known

outlasting every thing or being or ideal

More than real, more than living

beyond any picture or symbol, color,

sound or sight.

You eclipse all light.

Undefined by any wavelength of any extreme

you blow away the spectrum.

You outweigh all gravity

Bear up every weight

fill every micron of space

hold all in one place—

palming the universe.


Yet, you painstakingly

watch out for your own, you care,

Aware of our pitiable states and woes

You interpose, intervene

Weaving random strands of broken dreams

into seams of amazing art

You can thread through

the tiniest needle of the most feeble will,

to make new the shreds of lives frayed, hearts torn apart

But that’s not what makes you so loveable:

You wade through our stench

bear up under our crudeness

filter away our hypocrisies

dig through our clay and bedrock mule-headedness—

all with one intent:

to find your divine imprint,

your deposit of treasure,

your aroma of resurrected soul,

to refine, then hold

against your breast and breathe

‘This is mine, all mine.’



I could read for a thousand miles, traversing a whole continent of ideas, cross mountains of lofty ideals or valleys of arguments won or lost, deserts of chilled-out mental overload.

I could do it a top speed, against great yet powerless opposing winds of doctrine, creating dust clouds of speed-reading and overusing, guzzling down gallons of dreams I liked and letting go of the others in the black exhaust of rejection. Continue Reading »

In order for a society to continue peacefully and cohesively, there are certain foundational principles and practices which must be respected and followed. The Christian virtues of love, mercy, forgiveness, and charity among them. The Torah-derived values of justice, fairness, and restitution alongside those. Continue Reading »



The Little Things

Image result for rooster at crucifixion

It’s not Creation’s making that enthralls me

Nor miracles of Heaven’s cosmic plan

The titles by his name or any mystery

But the little things that help me understand.

Like the farmer who brought roosters to the market

and lost one in the pressing angry crowd

And how he recognized its cock-a-doodle

But left it there for history to record

Or the stable hand who fumbled through the basket

and shaking, gave the Roman soldier nails.

And watched him as he put them in his pocket,

mumbling how the scoundrels never paid.

It’s not so much that soldiers stripped him naked

But the dice they rolled and cast with grubby hands

and the pencil Pilate used to write the message

or the ching of silver coins upon the tiles

It’s not the fact that multitudes accused him

But the Pharisee seen biting on his locks

And not how Peter cursed when he denied him

but the crackle of the fire as he spoke

Yes the most important things should be repeated

As long as earth remains until He comes

But some little things get lost within the story

Plus a million more that no one ever saw.

I think, for all the deprivations, neglect, verbal and even sexual abuse I suffered as a child, I am all the better for it. For when I move, the arthritis of forgiveness touches me every time; the fractured bones of grace guide my steps, and the growling stomach of divine interventions fills my longings – all in ways difficult to explain. I believe that when we all find a destiny higher than our gender, race, nationality, and even our basest or highest desires, little else will matter. Christ transcends all of that. And as a matter of fact, he calls us to a higher place which will outlast all historical injustices or corrections, to goals which will supercede the noblest or the most strident efforts, and to outcomes which will outweigh the most weighty or ominous of intentions.

So, even if I die as a complete unknown, as a pauper, or ignominiously as a Joe on Skid Row, I want the world to know that Jesus is and always has been my hero, my general, my savior, and my friend, that pleasing him was my constant undying wish, and that knowing any action in my life glorified him in some small was worth it all.