Christian parent, please don’t try to break your child’s will. If you do, you might actually succeed, and the long-term outcome of that could be a disaster– the very thing you’re trying to avoid. I get it– you want a well-behaved child who makes good choices. We all do! But this dangerous idea that achieving the best for our children involves “breaking their will?” Yeah, that’s a dangerous idea. In fact, it’s one of those ideas where if you’re successful,… Read more

I’m sure over the course of time as a Christian you’ve heard the phrase, “but God never changes.” A variation of this phrase is repeated several times in Scripture (See for example, Mal 3:6, Heb 13:8, James 1:17). However, it is my contention that we often do not actually understand what this phrase means. At times we unintentionally misapply the concept to soothe tension in the Bible. Other times, we say “but God never changes” as a way to win a theological… Read more

Over the course of time I’ve noticed a troubling trend: it’s *almost* impossible to have a reasonable discussion with fellow Christians who believe we are called to give unwavering support the modern secular nation state of Israel. This of course, has led me to try to figure out why this is the case. Why do so many Christians reject basic facts about Israel? Why do so many of us have an aversion to believing truth on this issue? As your… Read more

So, you’re a good guy with a gun. I get it. I’ve seen the bumper sticker, heard the slogan a million times, and I even used to be one of you. I’m retired military, was an expert marksman, and was even awarded the Bronze Schützenschnur by the German army. I was a bonafide good guy with a gun for most of my adult life thus far. But even in my most pro-gun days, the entire American motif of a good guy… Read more

I don’t endorse political candidates, and this piece is not an endorsement. However, as someone fascinated by culture (in less than 6 weeks I will *finally* be a Doctor of Intercultural Studies!), I can’t help but comment on the phenomenon of Bernie Sanders in American culture. Some people love him, and others appear outright frightened by his ideas. I think what most interests me however, is the misconception that Bernie Sanders and his ideas are somehow radical or extreme. Perhaps they were… Read more

Perhaps you’ve seen it in your newsfeed this year or in a year past. Regardless of who published it, the article is likely to have a shocking headline similar to: “Super Bowl is Largest Human Trafficking Event”, or something to that effect. However, that claim is completely untrue. During my last 4 years of doctoral research, I’ve split my time between studying a theology of shalom, social movement theory, and human trafficking in the United States– topics I blended together in my… Read more

For me growing up, hell was the center of gravity and perhaps my biggest motivation for the 872 times I asked Jesus into my heart. I was petrified of going to hell, and who wouldn’t be? All those bonfire camp services that invited us to look into the flames and imagine being sent to a place of fire to be tormented forever? Every time I sat in one of those services I wondered if I had really asked Jesus into… Read more

Every few years around election cycle the same discussions repeat themselves over and over again. While there are a few issues here and there that crop up because of new gaps in culture, the bulk of the issues debated are quite predictable. One of those issues is “big government.” One side of the political spectrum will typically advocate for social programs, while the other side will object and call that “big government.” On one hand, the idea of small government… Read more

A common question I’ve received over the years is, “I’ve left fundamentalism, but how do I re-program my kids? How do I raise them differently than how I was raised?” It’s a good question. For those of us who have moved beyond Christian fundamentalism but still desire to raise our children as Christians, we need to make some adjustments in how we raise our children in the faith. Thus, here’s my advice on raising kids when everyone is becoming Formerly Fundie:… Read more

(What Franklin Graham is Wrong About Today, Vol 3) Sometimes I see a comment or hear a clip of Franklin Graham, and while I typically disagree, many times they are dismissible comments that allow one to roll their eyes and move on. But then there are times where his comments are so damaging, so destructive, so heartbreaking, that they cannot be ignored by anyone with half a conscience. Such is the case with comments that were aired recently on the radio program of Dr. James… Read more

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