Some Thoughts On The Relationship Between Bloggers And The Local Church

I watched a cyclone of furor erupt online last week in response to Tish Harrison Warren's CT Women piece entitled Who's In Charge of the Christian Blogosphere? in which she called for greater accountability between Christian bloggers and their local churches and/or denominations. Though she was writing to a female audience, the message of her post certainly applies to male bloggers as well. Some bloggers infuriated by her piece took offense that she'd used Jen Hatmaker as an example, others … [Read more...]

What Do Your Kids Know About Communion?

I taught Sunday School for years. The experience taught me a few things. One essential lesson was to avoid any craft project involving glitter. I found glitter in my clothes, hair, and Bible for days after creating sparkly Noah’s Ark rainbows with my class of first-and second-graders. A word to the wise: no matter how cute it looks in the curriculum guide or on Pinterest, there’s really no sane reason to drag glitter into your Sunday morning.A second, more serious lesson had to do with how in … [Read more...]

Evangelical Leaders, I’m Listening…

...but it seems to be a little quiet regarding a subject filling the headlines lately.There are lots of difficult things happening in this country. We sense we're at a turning point regarding the ongoing pain of systemic racial injustice, "gotcha" travel bans, ICE's new wave of aggressive immigration policing, or the stew of legal and ethical questions about gender and sexuality, just to cherry-pick a few issues off the top of my head. You can probably add a few more to my list.Each one … [Read more...]

Evangelicalism’s Uneasy Relationship With Qohelet

The world-weary author(s) of Ecclesiastes seems to have been well-acquainted with privilege and power. This voice is named only by title (Qohelet*, often translated as "preacher", he's a sage who knows what's what) and a "son of David" (a ruler in his own right and an heir of the king; some suggest Solomon, but Bible scholars have lots of other ideas about the identity - or identities - of the author[s] of this book).  I thought about the "been there, done that" way in which the book o … [Read more...]

Back To Church?

I’ve been blogging for more than a decade,and I’ve written often about spiritual abuse by church leaders – sharing both my own experience and referencing the struggles of others. I’m just one voice in a large crowd: there are numerous blogs, books, and worthwhile organizations telling the stories of spiritual and/or clergy sexual abuse survivors. The internet has been a tool for good in this struggle as it has facilitated connection between survivors. In a few high profile cases, the networking o … [Read more...]

Blue Christmas

Contrary to the song lyrics, it’s not the most wonderful time of the year for many of us. The jingle bell merriness of the season is like an out-of-tune gong for those grieving the deaths of family members or friends, struggling in the wake of a divorce, suffering the effects of broken relationships, experiencing financial hardship, or dealing with the effects of physical or mental illness in themselves or their loved ones.My family has been marked in recent years by each one of these l … [Read more...]

“Thank you for your service” at Church

Popular speaker and author Jen Hatmaker’s recent interview with Jonathan Merrittaffirming same-sex relationships led Lifeway to stop carrying her books. The uproar surrounding both this interview and Lifeway’s decision kicked off a helpful conversation in the blogosphere about, among other things, the way in which conference events have served to outsource women’s ministry from the local church.Jesus Creed-reading women, I’d love to hear from you. Have your congregational leaders recognized a … [Read more...]