10 Life Hacks To Try If You Favor “Outsiders” with “No Experience”

I kind of get it. Many people feel they have no voice in decisions that affect their lives; they've been left out of the economy, their values aren't reflected in the systems in which they must function, and much of the surrounding culture feels utterly foreign to their familiar context. I try to feel empathy for those who have endured a steep, uphill climb for years with nothing to show for it. And I can appreciate the idea that voting for a Presidential candidate who is "an outsider" with "no … [Read more...]

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The Gift of Hard Things: How to Use Yaconelli’s New Book

New life goal: write a book that gets the resounding endorsement of Anne Lamott.Of course, in my real life, this will probably never happen. But for Mark Yaconelli, it is happening. Because he's Mark Yaconelli. And when your new book has the resounding endorsement of Anne Lamott on the cover--in print, even--then you probably don't need a few paragraphs from a two bit blogger (me). But, "The Gift of Hard Things" is a Patheos Book Club choice this month, so a few paragraphs from me is what you … [Read more...]

A Privileged Seat at the Table

Guest Post: by Jordan Blevins BlesThe table is always expanding - making room for more people, and wider diversity. I like to think of it as revealing more of the table at which God sits. However, it is a long, slow reveal. Those of us who already have seats at the table tend to get in the way at times. We like to protect our table at the expense of joining God’s. I am a white, straight man. It is time to name the ways in which I, and my fellow straight, while men, are part of the problem. A … [Read more...]

Passing the Peace

Hi, folks. I took a week or so away from blogging to finish my book, and now I'm taking a week away to spend with my family. Enjoy this guest post from my friend Annie Kratzsch, and look for more guest posts in the coming days. I'll be back to writing around mid-August, and look forward to catching up with the world. A few weeks ago, I was proselytized twice in three days.On a Thursday night, before I could get all the way through the mall doors, I heard the universal opener for selling s … [Read more...]

Which Amendment Comes First? Guns, Muslims, and Fear that Trumps Freedom

After Senator Chris Murphy led a 15-hour filibuster; and other lawmakers, led by Rep. John Lewis, staged a sit-in on the House floor; Congress finally allowed for a vote on measures that would, among other things, ban people on the terrorist watch list from buying guns.Conservative lawmakers voted the measure down. Though its failure to pass was predictable, the reason they gave was a bit of a head-scratcher. (Not that reason has much play in the conversation around gun control...) Their c … [Read more...]

Good Christian Sex: Not an Oxymoron

Guest Post, by Bromleigh McCleneghanLast spring, I told the committee that hired me as the new associate pastor that I was writing a book about sex, both in the interest of full-disclosure and as a bit of self-defense. They couldn’t complain later if they didn’t complain initially, right?They didn’t complain. They are lovely. Though the congregation has taken to teasing me ever so slightly, especially as my book received its title (Good Christian Sex). Apparently it will receive a mentio … [Read more...]

The End of Us: Where Love Is Not Enough

Love is not enough.I'm a pastor, so I'm not supposed to say that. As a minister of the gospel, I'm supposed to say that love "bears all, believes all, endures all," etc. That love conquered the grave. The love is made perfect in Christ, and therefore perfects us all.Love will keep us together. Love lifts us up where we belong. Love is all you need.At some point, it all starts to sound the same, and it all starts to ring hollow. People have had enough of silly love songs.When the … [Read more...]

Who is My Neighbor? Police Shootings and Those We Leave For Dead

I am writing a book about family values--not the James Dobson kind, that are dependent on your family being a man+woman+2.5 kids+terrier. I'm writing about the kinds of values that do not rely on compliance with rigid gender roles, or a particular expression of "right belief." They are values that each unique family and faith community can discuss, apply, and live with intention, to find meaning and greater connection.The value that I'm struggling to articulate today is: justice. We say it's … [Read more...]

Why We Don’t Want To Be Made Well

Guest post: by Ed CyzewskiDo you have any moments from your past that make you cringe or recoil in fear and shame?I have a running list of these moments that range from times I publicly embarrassed myself in front of friends and family to the times I’ve deeply wounded friends and family with my own selfishness and anger. I can whip myself into a frenzy of guilt and shame with remarkable efficiency.One afternoon I sat down to pray because I'd had enough of the shame I'd been carrying. … [Read more...]


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