Ramblin' Dan

Ramblin' Dan

Dan Roloff is the editor of TheHighCalling.org, and his blog, Ramblin' Dan, has a little bit of everything. At times, a theologian, philosopher, comedian, publisher, sports enthusiast, and businessman, Dan offers a transparent look at the high calling of one man's work.

Sep 3, 2014

Legend of Cerro de la Plata

The holy grail of the Texas Hill Country rests somewhere on its far west region in land of a thousand springs. The three canyons area of the Llano, Nueces, and Frio Rivers serve as the focal point in the search for the lost treasure of Coronado. From the mid Eighteenth Century through the early Twentieth Century the stories of silver mines and Spanish treasure get tangled up with the hope for riches buried in the hills. By 1901 the riches Texans set their sights on turned to a black thick liquid. The Spindletop oilfield changed the treasure seekers’ hopes and...Read more +
Jun 23, 2014


Presumption robs us of knowledge. Recently, I came face-to-face with a piece of my own lack of knowledge in the form of presumption. For the better part of four decades a “totem pole” marked the entry to Comanche Outpost, the most primitive of the H. E. Butt Foundation Camps. I always resented the pole. It was totally out of place in the Southwest. Only the indigenous tribes of the Pacific Northwest carved totem poles, certainly not the Comanche people. It seemed to me a caricature of the “Indian” stereotype. The only significance the pole had for me was its location,...Read more +
Apr 25, 2013

Humility Has Two Faces

Humility has two-faces. Beware of the voices you hear saying, “You have to stay humble.” Or, “We’re just trying to be humble in our success.” Even, “I’m feeling humbled by this opportunity.” These expressions of “humility” reduce the word to some feigned modesty or even true modesty but not the essence of humility’s meaning. The English word “humble,” humility’s root, carries with it the original meaning of being lowly but also a modified sense of lowliness we call modesty. We are gradually changing the meaning of the word humility. No longer does the word connote a crawling on the ground...Read more +
Mar 29, 2013


If we don’t embrace our suffering how can we embrace the fullness of the resurrection? Suffering comes in many forms and it is deeply personal. There are perhaps as many forms of suffering as there are human beings. Our suffering is unique; yet it’s not. If we are to know Christ we are to embrace our suffering as if it were his suffering and for Jesus that suffering was deep, humiliating, painful, worrisome, and unfathomable. We may know about Jesus’ suffering. Too, we can empathize with it cognitively— the idea of suffering and pain can be intellectually understood. But to...Read more +
Mar 20, 2013

Work with Dignity

Stan and Floyd were wise and talented craftsmen. During my last years in college and for a while after I graduated we worked together. I learned a lot from both of these men about giving your best at work, working hard and being a standup guy. Floyd was the boss and he managed people well. He also demanded justice for his staff and the students of the school where we worked. I worked with Stan on the weekends. During the week he collected trash for the city. He was a garbage man. Both men were underemployed sixty-somethings looking to provide...Read more +
Jul 30, 2012

A Living Faith

Donnie Smith is the CEO of Tyson Foods. In an interview with The Wall Street Journal , he was asked if his faith influenced his management decisions. He replied: I don't think you can say, "I do all my church stuff on Sunday between nine and noon, and the rest of the time I am either out for myself or running my business." My faith influences how I think, what I do, what I say. There are a lot of great biblical principles that are fundamental to operating a good business. Being fair and telling the truth are biblical principles...Read more +
Jul 23, 2012

Grace and the Pall of Fog

Over the past year a pall has loomed over my family, a cloud of uncertainty like a thick fog lingering just overhead but not totally obstructing visibility. Last July I visited my sister, Judy, in the hospital in North Carolina. The occasion for the visit was the fortieth wedding anniversary of Judy and Ray. People from all parts of the country came to celebrate the couple. The day of the party the team of doctors caring for Judy’s stage-four cancer worked to release her from the hospital. They knew how important the event was to her. All the guests gathered...Read more +
May 31, 2012

Participating in Shalom

Mary Jane is a one person HR department. She watches over our benefits and is willing to go extra innings to help us resolve our issues. This past spring she went to bat for two of us who didn’t file our medical information by the deadline. MJ didn’t scold us for missing the deadline. She didn’t point out how we missed several announcements about the new benefits provider and the need to fill out new forms. Quietly and effectively MJ went to the provider and asked if we could have a week’s extension. Surprisingly, the benefits provider granted the extension...Read more +
May 22, 2012


A group of us gathered to discuss the uniqueness of our organization, Foundations for Laity Renewal. A marketing consultant led the conversation. “What makes you unique?” he asked. We told him about our strong value of hospitality. The marketer shot back, “The Four Seasons or Holiday Inn value hospitality too. Valuing hospitality, as you’re describing it, is not unique.” That comment knocked us back in our seats. For the next hour, we tried to explain how our hospitality made us unique. We were using everyday language to describe something that had deep Biblical meaning for us, but that also limited...Read more +
Apr 26, 2012

Another Incredible Person

Earlier this week there was some activity at a post I wrote in 2005 entitled “ Incredible Person .” It’s about Rodolfo Gonzalez and his selflessness. Rereading the post I was reminded of another incredible man I met through my work. My first recollection of him was about twenty-five years ago. In the office there were frequent conversations mentioning Victor Szebehely and his wife Jo Betsy Lewallen . She was a successful Austin attorney and he was a professor at the University of Texas. I met the couple at some retreats at Laity Lodge and was struck by his simple...Read more +