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Rev. Joe Cox serves as the head of the English department at Lutheran High School South in St. Louis, Missouri. He also coaches the school’s mock trial teams. Joe is married to Barb Cox, and they have two adult children, Caleb and Megan. In his free time, Joe enjoys playing board games and traveling.

Recent Posts by Joe Cox

Taking Faithful Notes on Life Lessons

I first met Ben when he was a freshman in my English class. He did something one day that I believe will stick with me for the rest of my teaching career. Every once in a while, I’ll interrupt the academic lesson with a casual thought that begins with “This is a life lesson …”

School Excellence Requires Christian Community

In my last blog, I wrote about how grace drives excellence. Particularly, I pointed out the importance for the Lutheran educator to strive toward excellence in his craft of teaching. I would like to continue with that theme as we consider that while the Lutheran educator strives for excellence as a response to the grace received by God, such excellence is impossible outside of a community.

Knowing God’s Grace, Why Settle For Mediocrity?

Grace impels excellence. St. Paul enjoins the Christians in Colossae, “to do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, giving thanks to God our Father through him” (Col. 3:17). Furthermore, he calls the Corinthian church to engage in even the most mundane of human activities, eating and drinking, “or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Cor. 10:31).

Vocation Formation

Recently, I was having a conversation with my daughter about what she wants to be when she’s “grown up.” For some reason, something so obvious struck a chord within me that I want to share my realization if nothing more than to serve as a reminder to my readers.

The Power of Recreation

In St. Louis, a popular fundraising activity is a trivia night, in which a small group of people competes with similar groups in answering an array of questions from various categories. Of course, in our Lutheran circles, “The Bible” is a common category, and one of the questions that arises frequently is “How long did creation take?” Generally speaking, the expected answer is “six days.” However, there’s no getting around the mention of the seventh day in Genesis when “God finished His work that He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work that He had done” (Genesis 2:2). So, what did God create on the seventh day? He created rest.

Law and Gospel in the Classroom

The Lutheran school system is a strange place, theologically speaking. It stands in the gap between a world of rules and a world of forgiveness. Following the scriptural insights of Martin Luther, we understand that God governs our culture according to what are traditionally referred to as the two kingdoms.

A New Normal for Christian Classrooms

Earlier this week I returned home from work despondent. I hadn’t had a “bad day.” I was simply overwhelmed. Between mask wearing and mask monitoring, trying to balance my attention between the in-class and the online students, and working to prepare for the end of the most challenging school year in my twenty years of teaching at a Lutheran school, I was just “done” for the day.

Theology of Education: Equipped to Serve

“What is your theology of education?”

It’s a question I ask candidates during those infrequent moments I find myself on an interview committee. I challenge you, dear reader, to stop for a moment and ponder that question before continuing. Go ahead … I’ll wait.

Your Students Are Valuable to God

Recently, some of my students asked me a question I’ve heard dozens of times since I began teaching. Perhaps it was because of the circumstances driving the question or perhaps it was because I’d already had the spark of an idea for this blog post—regardless, I answered their question differently than I have before.

Answering Teens: The Evidence Tells Me So

Previously, I wrote about the veracity of Scripture being based on Jesus’ testimony that the Bible is God’s Word. Every instance in which Jesus refers to the Old Testament is marked by the presupposition that the account being referred to is both true and accurate. One example of this is Jesus’ reference to the miraculous story of Jonah being in the belly of the great fish for three days and nights as a historical reality (Matthew 12:40). Likewise, all assertions found in the New Testament are grounded in Christ’s teachings.

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