You’re just in time…

From my most recent newsletter: I watched this week's election returns with one eye on the TV, the other on my Twitter feed. By 1:30 a.m., I was seeing both screens via double vision. My brain had eclipsed its saturation point.Across the political spectrum, every commentator had one sentiment in common: "This is unprecedented! History is being written tonight."No matter how we voted, I sense most of us agree we have opened the page to a disorienting – unprecedented! – new chapter in our … [Read more...]

Why Does Your Church Worship As It Does?

Much has been made of the longing among some believing Millennials for structure, reverence, and beauty in worship. Fewer smoke machines, more incense. I’ve certainly evidence of this desire among this demographic. But I see it among many in my own Boomer demographic, too, in a different form. Those who grew up in Lutheran, Methodist, Catholic, Episcopal, or Orthodox churches and made their way through a born-again experience into the Evangelical world (which is predominated by low church w … [Read more...]

Hitting the Evangelical Wall

There are a lot of different camps clustered under this big tent known as Evangelical Christianity. The idea of Evangelicalism as a single tent is more a theoretical idea than a practical one, as I suspect there never was a place and time in which we great-great-great grandchildren of the Protestant Reformation in which we were ever truly united. At this point in our history, if there ever was a tent, it has stretch to the point it no longer serves as much of a shelter those of us who still bear … [Read more...]

Chicago-area women: You’re invited!

When I was the communications director for Christ Together/Chicago, the thing I loved most about the job was collecting and sharing information about events (prayer gatherings, conferences, speakers, service opportunities) that people in the area might not otherwise discover. Last week, I passed on information in this space about the Kesher Forum. I realize I have readers all over the US and beyond, so the local focus isn't necessarily pertinent to all of you. However, even if you live in Boise, … [Read more...]

A worthwhile Chicago-area monthly learning opportunity

I appreciate the unique ministry of the Kesher Forum. This Chicago-area monthly lecture series is a place where people can come to hear from respected teachers and writers from the Christian and Jewish community about the Jewish foundations of Christianity, Jewish perspectives on Christianity, current issues facing the Jewish community, interfaith relationships, and more. Evangelical Christians are the primary audience, but the Forum draws its audience from a variety of backgrounds and faith … [Read more...]

The Layperson and ETS

A group of academics gather for a theology conference. Papers and panels have been vetted in advance of the event, and conferees move from session to session listening to presentations. There are books to be purchased, break-out sessions and dinners and meetings to attend. After the conference, the academics head back to their work in universities, colleges, Bible schools, and churches. They carry home with them some food for thought, an armload of new books, and perhaps a few new professional … [Read more...]

Real Faith Loves. Period.

In conjunction with the release of the movie Denial, a movie based on a true story about a journalist who was taken to court for libel by a Holocaust denier, some Patheos bloggers were asked to tackle the following question:Does faith prevent or propagate intolerance, and should someone have the right to deny the veracity and historicity of your faith tradition?Before I came to faith in the resurrected Jesus the Messiah, I denied the veracity and historicity of the Bible. By the time I … [Read more...]