I walk the line

Verbally abused in an unwarranted and shocking attack in my home this week by someone 4 years under my employ , I attempt to process what and why this happened.  I nearly called the police in fear for my personal safety and pray for this person's well-being as I ask the resurrected ONE in my heart to reveal a path to peace in the midst of my hurt.  I look back and see the signs of months of resentment building.A few years ago, I would have guilted myself to forgive and find a way to r … [Read more...]

Slave to Love

When did this happen?  She felt like an overcooked porkchop...Where was her essence, flavor or juiciness for life?  Curiosity dried up;  just a slave to lists, responsibilities and have to's.  When had she last danced a samba naked, wild  pulsating heart matching a sultry bassline?  Her heart restless and  bones dry, she desired passion and tenderness whether in the forest alone or beneath the covers with her lover. She had read in 1 corinthians 12:21 The eye cannot say to the hand, I don't … [Read more...]

How we failed to plant a successful church

Bec Cranford-Smith works at the Gateway Center in Atlanta. She is the site supervisor of  contextual education in partnership with Gateway Center and  Candler School of Theology. She is the pastor of Church of the Misfits.

 How We failed at Successful Church Planting  I sat with middle aged white men in a room decorated by someone infatuated with browns and oranges. The paintings seemed vaguely reminiscent of French vineyards and Italian streets, yet I was closer to crop dust, cotton and Crepe Myrtles in Macon, Georgia. The inquiry began after a couple of jokes and a word of prayer. I crafted my vision of the Church of The Misfits, sharing with conviction about contextualizing Christ to … [Read more...]

She was a friend of God

"Mother and Son" 2011 Abstract

She was a friend of GODI’m just getting in from my friend of 33 years mother’s funeral. She’s being buried on her 91st birthday!! What a glorious and full life!! I wouldn't have missed the service for anything. Rita Law was a woman I always gravitated toward at family/friend gatherings. Her light was so bright, I was like a moth to her vibrant flame. Her last few years were marred by worsening dementia and yet one could always sense her inner radiance.Rita raised seven children— all pilla … [Read more...]

Killjoy Prophets: Shalom, Palestine and our Uncle CUFI

"O Little Besieged Bethlehem" artwork by Ramone Romero

Merry Christmas from the Killjoy Prophets! We love the holidays as much as anyone. Sure, we don’t love the rampant consumerism or the fruit cake, but we love giving gifts, baking, singing Handel’s Messiah, reading the Magnificat with family, and feasting with friends. We even love mixing it up occasionally with our toxic uncle whose political views we find troubling. Sometimes we just down an extra drink and let him ramble on, sometimes we go to another room, but sometimes you just have to throw … [Read more...]

This Advent, Think Different. What Is GOD Waiting For?

be the change

It’s Advent again. This is the time, leading up to Christmas, when we reflect upon the thousand storylines of prophecy through the centuries that moved in solemn procession toward that One climactic event; the incarnation, the birth of Jesus. We reflect upon the convergence of those storylines culminating in this one Messianic babe. Every sacrifice, from Abel’s altar to the last Passover lamb before the Passion, paved the Messiah’s path. Often, during Advent we use this time to refle … [Read more...]

What do Pee Wee Herman and Non-Attachment have in common?


Two days ago I purchased my monthly copy of Mantra Yoga+Health magazine. I was anticipating my "highlight" as I had submitted an answer to the question 'What's the craziest thing you've ever done forL O V E?'. I had answered in an honest way that is uniquely me; expressing my voice and hoping to marry my emergent Christian faith with my yogic sensibilities.No sign of my Joe Longo pic I submitted, no talk of foot washing humility....hmmmm?The mind begins its judging. First, aimed … [Read more...]

Election Day: Recuperation, Trasformismo, and a Spectacularized & Commodified Jesus


Cricket:   Jesus is never mad at us — if we live with him in our hearts?Tommy:   I hate to break it to you, but he is. He most definitely is.         I [Heart] Huckabees (2004)Election Day, 2014. Our votes today will be translations of our political ideologies into a series of choices from a limited option set. These ideologies are the products of many factors including our life experiences and personal faith/worldviews. But there will be more happening today than simply persons c … [Read more...]

Why Religion Needs “Nones”

Deposition of the Body of Christ, painted 2002

In 2012, a Pew Foundation Survey on religion revealed the rising number of religiously unaffiliated Americans — sometimes referred to as “the rise of the Nones” (not to be confused with “The Rise of the Nuns,” a movie script that’s been floating around in my head since the day I discovered “nunzilla”). Of course, labeling millions of people “Nones” (as if they stand for nothing) is a bit disingenuous. In reality, the study showed that most of the Nones self-identify as “spiritual but not religiou … [Read more...]

Making Me a Channel of His Peace


Two and a half years ago I attended my first Centering Prayer retreat at the St. Francis Renewal Center with a special group of all ages seeking God's friendship in the stillness. I sat in one of the later sessions of the weekend and began pleading with God:"I cannot do this on my own. I do not know enough to teach this meditation in the prisons as you've called me. Who am I to go forward in this way- I am a wife and mother and not an expert on this topic, by any means. I don't know enough … [Read more...]