Welcoming Wonder and Curiosity: Lessons from a Comic Shop for the Church

I have loved comics for as long as I can remember being able to read. What started with a mail subscription to G.I. Joe ballooned into an infatuation with The Mighty Thor (and the panoply of Norse Gods) and a growing collection of unopened Toy Biz X-Men figurines from the early 1990s. My room as an elementary [Read More…]

Holy Ship: Four Ways the Church is like the Millennium Falcon

When I was a kid, I loved the Millennium Falcon. Okay, so it’s not just when I was a kid. I still love the Millennium Falcon, and I’ve always held a special place in my heart for the Corellian freighter. In fact, a friend sent me off from my last job with a poster of the ship, and I wear [Read More…]

Should Boys Dress as Female Characters for Halloween? What About Genocidal Maniacs?

For the past two Halloweens, both of my young sons have chosen to dress up as female characters instead of male ones. Last year, my youngest went as Sabine Wren, the artist provocateur from Star Wars Rebels, and this year my oldest is dressing up as Valka, the mother of Hiccup in How to Train Your Dragon [Read More…]

Peace is Not Tranquility (A #WGFest2015 Lectionary Reflection)

  Lectionary Year B — Proper 11 — Mark 6:30-34; 53-56 On Saturday, my youngest son and I spent an afternoon carefully stacking a half-dozen rocks that had been worn smooth and elliptical by the French Broad River that eddied around our knees.  The swift river and its small pockets of whitewater drowned out the world around us [Read More…]

Jeremiah 29:11 Isn’t about You … And That’s a Good Thing

Jeremiah 29:11 is not about you. And, to be honest, I really don’t think you want it to be either. That’s because this verse isn’t about what your personal future holds. It’s not about whether you will get into the college of your dreams or the promotion you are hoping for. Not even close. That, of course, [Read More…]

Abuse Happens in Progressive Churches, Too: The Duggar Scandal and the Failure of Self-Critical Reflection

Now is the time to talk about abuse in the church. Now, when you are tired of talking about it. Now, when you’ve moved on to the next social media buzz. Now, when you think you’ve exhausted every possible angle of it. That’s because now is the time where we get to decide whether we [Read More…]

Fiction for the Soul: 9 Spiritual But Not Religious Summer Reads

Fiction is good for the soul. For me, novels and short stories — not theological tomes — have been the landmarks of my spirituality. Fiction has opened me up to more profound spirituality and a greater awareness of the world than anything in the canon of great Christian writings. There’s nothing wrong with theology, of course. [Read More…]

Leprechaun Traps and the Terrible Lessons They Teach

UPDATE: This afternoon, as my children and I continued to discuss whether it was okay to trap another creature, they decided that instead of a trap, they wanted to build a hotel for the leprechaun. And to provide robots with the hotel so the leprechaun wouldn’t be lonely. So maybe it’s a reach how I critique [Read More…]

Vinyl Church: 5 Things Christians Can Learn from Vinyl Records

Vinyl. It’s not just for hipsters any more. And Christians ought to listen up, because the future of the church might just be reflected in the resurgence of vinyl records. In many ways, the music industry reminds me of the modern church. Like the church, its leaders fret about its future in the midst of dramatic cultural [Read More…]

Killing Jesus Just Killed White Jesus: Nat Geo’s Miniseries Casts Lebanese-born Actor to Play Jesus

  Killing Jesus might have just killed White Jesus. National Geographic Channel’s new miniseries, Killing Jesus, has done what virtually no other mainstream Jesus film or television series has done. They cast a Middle Eastern man to portray a Middle Eastern man. Shocking, I know. The four-part miniseries, set to air in 2015, announced today [Read More…]


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