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Chris Fabry
Married to Andrea since 1982. We have 9 children together and none apart. Our dog's name is Tebow.
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Where We Are Now

After finding and remediating mold twice in our Colorado home, we abandoned ship in October 2008. Because of the high levels of exposure, our entire family was affected. After months of seeing different specialists for all of the problems, we came to Arizona to begin comprehensive treatment to rid our bodies of the toxic buildup. In August 2009 we moved into a larger home, four bedrooms, south of Tucson, north of Mexico. I am doing my daily radio program/ writing from that location. Thanks for praying for us. We really feel it.

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Thursday, November 27, 2014
Being thankful is swimming upstream. It’s breaking out of the normal existence and routine. Here are the top eight things that prevent my heart from beating to the thankful drum.

1. Busyness. You can’t be thankful when you have no time to reflect on reality. And the reality is, there is much for which to be thankful. Every breath is a gift. Every laugh. Every meal, no matter how meager.

2. Fear. Constant worry and angst about the future, the past, world events, politics, finances—it all crowds out the things that are. And truth is, there are problems in the world and in my life. But there are also a multitude of reasons to be grateful.

3. Self-sufficiency. If there’s one thing that will keep me from being thankful, it’s the thought that I’m in control of everything that happens and I have to scrape and scratch and claw for everything.

4. Excess. When I am captured by the trinkets and toys offered for sale and all the add-ons to those trinkets and toys that I need in order to enjoy them fully, I fail to see what I already possess. That which I crave possesses me.

5. Poverty. When I have very little, I can become resentful of those who have more and become bitter. I have not experienced this much in my own life, but the taste of it made me realize how easy it is to compare and become envious.

6. Regret. If I allow the mistakes and hangups of my life to define me, I’ll miss the progress that’s been made.

7. Circumstances. If I could only get past this financial hurdle, this job, this school, this relationship—all of the struggles of my life are propelling me forward. I can give thanks even for the negative things because these are pushing me forward to become the person I was meant to be.

8. Lack of Faith. Faith is not believing hard about something that isn’t true. Faith is seeing evidence of the truth and trusting that what I see is not everything that is. You can’t be ultimately thankful in life without someone to whom you can give thanks.

Being thankful is a full-time job because we have been given full lives, beating hearts, breath in our lungs and sunshine. Take a look around you right now, wherever you are. You can see a hundred reasons to be thankful. And beyond that are a billion more.

May you overcome these hurdles to a thankful heart today.
Sunday, November 23, 2014
I had a professor in college who taught me a lot about journalism. He taught from the overflow of his life as a reporter. He taught how to interview. He taught the difference between writing for the eye and the ear. But there’s one lesson he never taught, and for that I will not be able to forgive him.

I’m convinced Bos could have been a big fish in a big pond. He had the intellect, the charisma, the wit—the whole package. But for some reason he chose to stay in Huntington, WV and report relatively small stories, until big ones found him. He hung his hat at WSAZ-TV and hung his heart at home with his family.

Bos was one of the most contented men I have ever known. He was giving. A lot of people are talking about what a father figure he was to them. He was a mentor, a confidant, a friend, and you always had the feeling you were the most important person in the room to him. How did he do that?

When I was in high school, Bos was a judge at a forensics competition. I was a junior in high school. I can’t remember much of the competitions, but I do remember his score sheet. He gave constructive criticism throughout, but in big, bold red letters, at the top, he wrote, “Hey, you can write!”

I kept that page for many years and I can still see it in my mind. Every morning when I get up to write, those four words are in my head. Bos Johnson believed in me, and that was important because he was a man you could believe. Integrity. He shot straight. Authority. He said what he needed to say and then stopped. He knew how to use a pause in a lecture or an interview. And he was one of the few people who really listened.

Bos showed us that journalism wasn’t just about getting the story. It wasn’t even about getting it right. That was important, of course. Facts and the inverted pyramid and all that. News is change. But news always concerns people. And people mattered to Bos Johnson. Maybe that’s why so many students loved and respected him. And viewers, as well.

There are a few people in life who are irreplaceable. Bos Johnson was one of those for me and I will never forget his kindness, generosity, voice, laugh and smile. But Bos left out one lesson in the syllabus. He never taught us how to live in a world without him in it.

Monday, October 27, 2014
I said it loudly and with conviction. I said it to my dog. But I didn’t hear the irony until later.

Tebow, our Morkie, was perched in his favorite spot on the back of the couch, scanning the movement of everything outside. A bee buzzed past the window and he barked. The plants outside waved in the wind and he barked. He thought someone was at the door and he barked. He barked at the sound of his bark.

“You don’t have to bark at everything,” I yelled.

I berated him, brow-beat him, looked sternly at him and rolled my eyes as if I were saying, “Come on, get with the program.”

“I’ll take care of the bunny in the yard or the wind or the truck going past without a muffler. If you see a rattlesnake or an intruder, you can bark, otherwise, I’m good. You don't have to bark at everything.”

Then it hit me, this must be how God feels about me.

There’s some issue that’s pressing, that has me all wrapped up. Somebody cuts me off in traffic or rushes ahead in the only open aisle at the grocery store and I have three items and they have 300. I get frustrated with a candidate's commercial or bone-headed play. And I bark.

I like to sit on my couch and bark and think I’m doing something. It makes me feel better to bark.

But life is not just about making me feel better. So I’m trying to learn from Tebow and save my bark for things that count. I don't have to bark at everything.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014
I wept at the grocery store. I walked inside and was transported to the street where my grandmother lived more than 45 years ago.

It was the smell, of course, that did it. The electric doors opened and I was assaulted with the candy aisle directly ahead stocked full for Halloween. I stopped, took a deep breath, and closed my eyes and I swear I could see it. I could see her.

Mrs. Quintroll (sorry if I'm not spelling that correctly) was an ancient woman when I was a child in the 1960s. White hair. A will of a wisp. Her teeth were always so white, but I had no concept of dentures back then. She wore sweaters in the summer heat. I'm sure she had to dance around in the shower to get wet.

The store was her house, just the front room, and she sold bread and milk and other sundries. But it was what was behind the glass cases in front that drew me.

My mother would park in front of my grandmother's house and I'd ask to go to the "ten-cent store." She'd smile and hand me a dime and off I'd go, like a Lewis and Clark bar. This was before the days of worrying abut child-abductions, or, perhaps my mother was hoping someone might relieve her of her duties.

The store had a screen door that squeaked and I remember wooden floors and a cool, basement-like feel. I do not remember anything about the rest of the room, I can only tell you what was behind the glass cases in front. At just the right viewing height for a round, chunky kid like me was a treasure trove of candy.

Pixie sticks. Caramel chews--I think they were called pinwheels. Tootsie Rolls. Jawbreakers. Smarties. Mary Janes. Kits taffy in the little squares. Tootsie Roll Pops. And the holy grail, Wax Lips. Oh wait, and the wax bottles of juice or soda or whatever they were. Licorice, too, but I would never waste a good dime on licorice.

I can't recall every type of candy, but I remember the smell of the room. It was the odor of every childhood dream. Mrs. Quintroll would stand behind the counter, a bony hand outstretched, and I'd hand her my dime. She'd squint at me over her cat-shaped glasses and ask, "What would you like?"

One piece at a time, I would select my choices. A Tootsie Roll Pop--grape, please. And a red one. Two pinwheels. Two Smarties.

My mind whirred with the speed at which I was choosing. I was closing in quickly on the ten-cent mark and I had to leave room for the Wax Lips. There was a fair amount of anxiety involved with this procedure because I didn't want to choose unwisely. And the overpowering smell of the candy almost lifted me off the wooden floor.

You have four more cents left," she said, pulling out the little paper bag where she placed my candy. She called it a "poke." On the radio I would hear a song, someone singing about "poke salad" and a girl whose mother was working on a chain gang. I can't even talk about her granny.

I chose four more pieces, including the Wax Lips, and she handed me the paper sack. I thanked her and went skipping down the lane to my grandmother's place.

I don't remember when they closed the store. I don't remember Mrs. Quintroll dying. I was oblivious to much of life going on around me. But that smell brought a wave of emotion and memory I had buried.

I went back to that little town not long ago and took some pictures of the street, my grandmother's house (pictured below), my uncle's wood-shop, the graveled lane that is now paved. It's all so much smaller than it seemed growing up.

And the smell of the candy is somehow sweeter.


Friday, August 29, 2014
So much to say.

In 2008, we took a hit. A big one.

I never wanted to own a house again.

We moved to Arizona to get better--we thought we'd be here for three months. It's been five years.

We've been talking, dreaming about owning a house. I've wanted to give Andrea a place where she can plant and blossom. But renting has been our lot in life.

Until mid-July when our rental became bank-owned.

So we were forced to either rent or buy.

We looked and looked.

There was a house on an acre, a little further out than we wanted, but no homeowner's association. It was all electric. When I first saw it, I swear this is what I thought, "That's our house."

We looked at it, but it didn't feel big enough to house all of us AND my office. So we kept looking.

It wasn't until after the ultimatum about the rental that we gave it another try.

And here we are. In the house I thought was our home. After five years.

We're stuffed in here like Who's down in Whoville, but it's our house.

Yesterday the phone company was supposed to install all the fancy connections for my radio show. We have diligently pursued this for a month, calling, making sure things were on schedule. When they didn't show up, I called. They admitted it was their fault, they messed up. I spiraled down, disgruntled, and then heard David Jeremiah talk about thanksgiving and being grateful. So one thing didn't go well.

Some might be tempted to say that Satan has thrown a wrench in things. I choose to look at it that God has allowed us this little hiccup in order to test us. Do we really believe he's in control? If so, he can use even a mistake by the phone company.

We're trying another creative approach to the program for next week. Maybe it will work. Maybe it won't. But we'll be diligently trying. Good things come to those who keep trying.

Monday, July 28, 2014
Keith Green. Photo by Eseymour at en.wikipedia [GFDL (www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)], from Wikimedia Commons

Thirty-two years ago I was in Germany on a missions trip with Greater Europe Mission. I was living with a Canadian family, the Boldts, struggling to understand German and to find my place in the world.


In that world of Airmail, before the Internet, before email, cell phones and instant information, the news somehow reached me that Keith Green had died in a plane crash in Texas. I believe it was on the radio, perhaps an English language news broadcast, but I remember the disbelief I felt. This couldn’t be. It couldn’t be the same Keith Green I knew. I sang his songs at our church, sort of under the radar. I remember letting my pastor hear "The Lord is My Shepherd" and him being okay with it until the guitar part.

I was one of those people who sent a check to Last Days Ministries for $6, I think, and received a copy of So You Wanna Go Back To Egypt in the mail. I read every one of the Last Days Newsletters. I learned how to play "I Want To Be More Like Jesus" in B-flat, for crying out loud, that was how committed I was.

There was something about his voice—it wasn’t just the songs he sang or the lyrics, there was more behind them. Call it passion, fervency—there was just something about Keith Green that made you sit up and listen.

Years later, while working at Moody Radio, I would interview Melody Green and others who knew Keith and worked with him. They described a passionate guy who wasn’t always easy to get along with. He was headstrong and opinionated. And God used him to speak to a generation. Foibles, faults and all that hair, God took his songs and words and reached into hearts.

Today is the 32nd anniversary of Keith’s death and the others on that plane. On the program today we’ll talk with some of his friends and ask a provocative question: If Keith had not died in 1982, what would he be doing today? How would God have changed him, used him? (And if you don't hear it live, you can visit the Chris Fabry Live! website to listen to the podcast or stream.)

This brings a question for you and me—what have we done with the 32 years Keith didn’t have? What will you do with the time you have left?