Why Work to Change the World? (Matthew 21:23-32)

By Matt Skinner.  Americans talk about race. It’s hard to follow through on our commitments. It’s hard to do what we know to be right. We don’t need Jesus to remind us of all that. Most of us figured it out easily enough on our own. What, then, does Jesus contribute to our understanding of what a well-lived life looks like? Can he help people of faith be agents of change, people who look at our fouled-up world and make differences that will benefit other people and will give voice to G … [Read more...]

Blessing Those Who Have Cursed Us (Jonah 3:10—4:11)


By Eric D. Barreto.   Volunteers channel faith, compassion, and muscle into new homes for the poor. Sometimes, we teach children the oddest Bible stories. It is certainly curious that we would decorate baby nurseries with images from the story of Noah’s Ark. The smiling elephants in the comically tiny boat must always be blocking out the mass of humanity and animal life drowning under a seemingly never-ending deluge. The story of Jonah is another favorite in the Sunday School classroom. … [Read more...]

Foolishness (1 Corinthians 1:18-24)

By Margaret Aymer.Children are suffering from violence in the U.S. and around the world.Thug. Thief. Pot smoker. He should have surrendered to the authorities. Terrorists. Anti-Semites. They use their own children as human shields. It’s their own fault that thousands of their children are dead. Illegals. Drug smugglers. Who cares if their average age is under 13, if they are prey to gangs and sex traffickers? They are coming across the border to attack our women. Michael Brown. The c … [Read more...]

A Strange Summer Vacation (Romans 13:8-14)

By Barbara K. Lundblad.Five students from different faiths travel the world in pursuit of interfaith dialogue. “What did you do on your summer vacation?”  Even now students may be answering that question in essays at the start of this new school year. Maybe you wrote such a paper years ago. No matter what you did or where you went this past summer, it was almost impossible to escape the heaviness of the headlines. Thousands of children traveled alone from Central American countries to ente … [Read more...]

God Hears the Cries of #Ferguson: A Burning Bush and a World on Fire

By Keith Anderson.What can the people of faith do about racism in America?  "Then the LORD said, 'I have observed the misery of my people…I have heard their cry…Indeed, I know their sufferings…’" - Exodus 3:7 For the last few weeks, the eyes of America have been riveted on the town of Ferguson, Missouri, a formerly little-known suburb of St. Louis. It was there on August 9th that an unarmed African-American teenager named Mike Brown was shot six times by police, sparking ongoing … [Read more...]

Sweaty Spirituality: Fighting Obesity with Paul (Romans 12:1-8)


By Jacob D. MyersObesity is hitting the current generation of US children particularly hard. Do you want to know a secret about working out? Here it is: we don’t grow our muscles in the gym. When we lift weights we perform controlled damage to our bodies; we literally tear our muscle fibers, forcing our bodies to adapt. We improve outside of the gym by consuming healthy foods. To “battle the bulge” requires a commitment to strenuous exercise and healthy eating. All who have enjoyed (or end … [Read more...]