Get a Free Book! (The Holy Nomad)

Not too long ago I participated in a Patheos book club discussion of The Holy Nomad, by Matt Litton. In my reflection, I noted that Litton’s book, in which he jolts us to find a little more joy for the journey, reminded me of the quest approach to the Christian faith: To me, that’s a natural (or [Read More...]

Got a Ph.D. in Theology? Go Work for a Church

What to do with all these worthless Ph.D.’s in the humanities? The Chronicle of Higher Ed relays a speech given by Michael F. Bérubé to the Council of Graduate School, called “The Future of Graduate Education in the Humanities.” He offers up, in the words of the article’s title, a “sobering critique” of the state of the [Read More...]

Parachurch Craziness: Freedom at Tufts and Equality in Louisville

My Facebook feed is a-twitter with exclamations about the recent decision at Tufts University to allow an on-campus Christian group (Tufts Christian Fellowship) to “discriminate,” so to speak, in selecting its leaders. Back in October, Tufts’ Community Union Judiciary had implemented an “all comers” policy, which stated that any university-sponsored campus group could not discriminate, [Read More...]

Advent Shock: Jesus, the Crucified Peoples

Advent season formally begins this Sunday. I love this period of intentional reflection on the meanings of the “coming of God,” in Jesus of Nazareth. The incarnation. Emmanuel–God with us! Theologian Letty Russell wrote of “advent shock,” a poignant phrase that suggests that the current state of history and the “way things are” is being [Read More...]

Black Friday, Good Friday, and the Eucharist: Being Consumed, Part II

Black Friday is receding into Thanksgiving. A U.S. News articlereports that Wal-Mart, Sears and Toys-R-Us will have flung wide their gates at 8 pm on Thursday. Target is exercising remarkable restraint, waiting an hour later to begin the madness. I’ve been reflecting on this phenomenon in the context of reading William Cavanaugh’s Being Consumed, where he [Read More...]

A Thanksgiving Prayer from Kierkegaard

“Father in heaven! You hold all the good gifts in your gentle hand. Your abundance is richer than can be grasped by human understanding. You are very willing to give, and your goodness is beyond the understanding of a human heart, because you fulfill every prayer and give what we pray for or what is [Read More...]

Sexism at Christian Colleges (and Seminaries)

I wanted to make you aware of an excellent an important reflection by my Bethel University colleague, Pamela Erwin. On her blog, “Theological Curves” (gotta like that title), Erwin reflects on a recent Christianity Today study on sexism at Christian colleges. I would think the same certainly applies to evangelical seminaries as well–if not more [Read More...]

Is Free Market Capitalism Always Free? Where Consumer Desire Meets Cheap Labor

I’ve started reading William Cavanaugh’s Being Consumed: Economics and Christian Desire. I’m only half-way in, but I’m pretty sure this is one of those books that anyone who pastors a church in the U.S. really should read, wrestle with, and then figure out how to communicate its message to their congregants–or at least start a conversation about [Read More...]

Holy Nomad and the “Quest” Approach to Christian Faith

This post is my contribution to Patheos’ book club on Matt Litton’s Holy Nomad: The Rugged Road to Joy.  I suppose this book falls in same genre as The Ragamuffin Gospel (Brennan Manning) and The Sacred Romance (Brent Curtis and John Elderidge)–sort of a combination of memoir, inspirational writing, and biblical/theological reflection. As an academic, I’ve grown used to reading lengthy tomes, [Read More...]

Politics and the Narcissist Impulse: Just Make Me a Hero, Please

Election season is winding down. We will all breathe a sigh of relief when it’s over (or half of us will) The political machine seems driven around something quite basic to humanity: narcissism. In political discourse we hear a lot about the “common good,” and the “state of the country.” But whether the topic is [Read More...]


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