It is very easy for us in the United States to become insular, as we focus on coping with trauma here at home. The church in America is no exception. As a result, we may not be attentive and sensitive to the trauma Christians face across the globe, including missionaries. I reached out to a veteran missionary with Wycliffe who will be presenting at an interdisciplinary and multidimensional conference for New Wine, New Wineskins at Multnomah University and Biblical Seminary… Read more

How do you break free from trauma? That’s not an easy question to answer, nor an easy thing to do. It’s like trying to break free from a prison cell. Before trying to offer an answer to the question, it would be good to define “trauma.” The American Psychological Association defines “trauma” in this way: Trauma is an emotional response to a terrible event like an accident, rape or natural disaster. Immediately after the event, shock and denial are typical. Longer term… Read more

Jesus built bridges, not walls. Although people stumbled over Jesus and were divided in their opinions over him, the debate often centered on his bridge-building practice and claim to be God’s reconciling agent in the world. At Jesus’ death, the veil in the Temple was torn from top to bottom (Matthew 27:51). He tore down the dividing wall of hostility between Jew and Gentile (Ephesians 2:14). There is no longer a division between Jew and Gentile, male and female, slave… Read more

Such collective trauma poisons a society. So, how might we proceed? Read more

The Urban Dictionary defines “knows no bounds” as “An idiom that means something or someone that possesses no limits and will go the extra mile no matter what.” Therefore, that faith may find in Christ a solid ground of salvation, and so rest in him, we must set out with this principle, that the office which he received from the Father consists of three parts. For he was appointed both Prophet, King, and Priest; though little were gained by holding the… Read more

How inconvenient it must be for God to come to earth to suffer and die for our sins. God must not be American. After all, we Americans like our conveniences, as others have noticed: fast food, drive thru, microwave meals, instant coffee, easy return policies, and ice-making refrigerators, among other things. We even have convenience stores. I wonder how many American Christians or churches realized this evening they were out of ashes, and ran out to convenience stores in the hope… Read more

President Trump remarked during a Black History Month gathering that “Frederick Douglass is an example of somebody who’s done an amazing job and is getting recognized more and more, I notice” (Refer here). This statement caused an Internet sensation: did the President even know who Frederick Douglass was—he made it sound as if he were still alive. Still, there is a sense in which President Trump was right: Mr. Douglass seems to have received greater attention with the passing of… Read more

In a post-apocalyptic world of almost total extinction, a father and son struggle to survive. They fight against the elements, hunger, and the threats of robbery and murder, even cannibalism, to make their way south to the coast in hopes of finding warmer climate. Cormac McCarthy’s Pulitzer prize-winning The Road, which was also made into a film, is a classic, gripping tale of familial self-preservation. As harrowing and far-reaching in horror as the book and film are, they come close and… Read more

[**Beware: Light Spoilers Ahead for the Movie Moonlight**] All too often, we reduce people to the things they do, the things others do to them, who they are associated with, the color of their skin, the names we  give them… The list goes on. Take for example the critically acclaimed movie Moonlight (Here are a few reviews of the film from The New York Times, The Guardian, and the New Yorker). The main character is an African American, whom we get glimpses… Read more

In honor of “Black History Month,” I asked an African American friend of mine, Pastor Jeff Harley, to respond to a few questions. He graciously accepted the invitation. I had the privilege of teaching a doctor of ministry course in which Pastor Harley was enrolled as a student. Since that time, he has shaped my thought and heart in various ways. Pastor Harley has written for the journal I edit, Cultural Encounters: A Journal for the Theology of Culture. His… Read more

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