5 Questions With Phil Callaway

Welcome to 5 Questions With.....

Today's Guest is Phil Callaway.

I've been enjoying Phil's articles in the Salvation Army magazine, Faith and Friends,
for awhile now.

Phil Callaway is an award-winning author, speaker and daddy of three. The best-selling author of twenty-four books, Phil has been called "the funniest Canadian alive," but never by his high school teachers. He is a frequent guest on national radio and TV, and his humorous stories on family life have been featured in hundreds of magazines worldwide. But he insists that his greatest achievement was convincing his wife to marry him. Phil lives in Alberta, Canada with his high school sweetheart. They are married.

And now without further delay, on to the questions:

Hello Phil,

I have to ask about your new book, To Be Perfectly Honest. Why did you decide to write a book on honesty?

I've written somewhere in the neighborhood of 25 books. Only two titles have been at the suggestion of publishers. This was the second. For some reason they singled me out as a guy they could get to tell the unadulterated truth about my struggle to be 100% truthful. Or else they thought I have a problem telling the truth and this would be a good way for me to repent! They asked me to keep a diary of telling the whole truth for nothing but a year. It's been a grand adventure.

2. How hard was it to tell the truth?

Harder than I had hoped. A friend said, "Isn't that a bit like giving up arson for Lent?" He's right. I'm a follower of Jesus and the truth should be second nature, but I've had trouble with it through the years. Not grand fables, just twisting the small things in my favor. I've written about integrity through the years because the things I write and speak about are things I'm aware I need help with. Writing about it was an awesome experience and has transformed my though patterns and actions in profound ways.

3. You use humor to convey Biblical truth. Do you find people respond well to that approach?

It's funny. When I hear that question the first thing that comes to mind is that many have raked me over the coals for my use of humor to communicate the good news of Jesus Christ. One guy phoned to tell me, "We're in the last days here, this is hardly a time for laughter." I said, "Is that you Dad?" He didn't find that funny. The truth is, I can't stop laughing because the greatest punchline in all the world is that God loves the likes of me. Amazing. The vast majority, maybe 99.6 percent, have applauded the humor approach. I'm able to speak 100 times a year around the world precisely because I use humor. I'm a rather dull preacher. You wouldn't want to hear me preach. But I can tell stories so people will listen and these stories contain Scripture and very good news, the truth that God's grace is there for all of us. Much of my speaking is to secular audiences and again, it's the humor that gets me there. But when I'm there they will hear the story of my life, how I learned to stop chasing stuff that won't satisfy, the importance of leaving a legacy, and how I'd be dead without faith. I'm criticized by some believers who haven't read my books or heard me speak. They think I'm just a funny, shallow guy. But we've been through deep difficulties and the best humor is always born in adversity.

4. You write regularly in the Salvation Army mag, Faith and Friends. How did that relationship develop?

I can't remember when it started, but it would have been in the mid-nineties I'm sure. I was just a kid back then. I had hair. And teeth. I wore size 32 pants, for Pete's sake. But they ran my articles and people must not have minded them because we're still doing it and their even running them in German now in their German edition. Funny story...my daughter awoke me early one Saturday and said, "It's for you Dad. Someone from Germany." I thought she was joking so I took the phone and said, "Javol!" It was the editor of the magazine there. Thankfully she laughed. I've loved the Salvation Army and am pleased to have my articles syndicated in many magazines now around the world.

5. What do you hope people take away from your writing?

Oh, I hope they have a grin on their face when they close the book. A grin that comes from knowing that what we see around us isn't all there is. THat no matter what we're experiencing right now, God loves us, He has a plan and it's amazing. And we get eternity thrown in, so that's not a bad little bonus!

Thanks so much sir!

You're very welcome, Rick. I wish you all the best with the blog.

Well there you go. I would encourage you to check out all of Phil Callaway's books and to visit his website: philcallaway.com

To see past 5 Questions guests see 5 questions page under the tab above.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

At our congregational meeting yesterday evening, Toby CoupĂ© from the Mental Health Family Resource Centre in Smithers gave a presentation about support groups in our area. She spoke briefly about the therapeutic quality of laughter. Even in the most serious and difficult of conversations, humour can be an unexpected gift – It does more than just brighten the mood; it helps bring healing, too.

I'm thankful for people like Mr. Callaway who share the spiritual(?!) gift of humour with the body of Christ!