Awakening Mosaics [Tara Lamont Eastman]

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There was a time that picking green beans in my grandparent’s garden and sitting on the front porch snapping off the stems was a spiritual practice for me. There was a sense of community with my Grandparents as they would tell stories, sing songs (often church hymns) and teach me practical life skills like preparing, cooking and eating bacon dressed green beans. Then flash forward thirty-some years and my own mind reels at the transformation of culture and community with the impact of t … [Read more...]

Numbers Don’t Lie: Finding Adolescent Self-Worth in Spite of Social Media Pt. 2 [Mandy Meisenheimer]

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When I was student teaching during my senior year of college, a student entered my classroom during 8th period wearing a t-shirt that said, “The Head Foundation: Give freely, and give often.” I immediately began writing up a disciplinary referral. He was unfazed. In fact, he started to giggle.“You are the first teacher to notice my shirt,” he said.This student was having a great t-shirt day, and my referral was just icing on the cake.When I was in high school, we used clothing as our … [Read more...]

[VIDEO] The (Terribly Overwrought) Left Behind Move Trailer is Out!

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The trailer for the upcoming Left Behind movie is out. And boy, is it ever earnest and fake-intense and terribly overwrought and just aching for blockbuster status. But alas, it will not achieve any such status because it is a "Christian" movie pushing an absurd cultural theology with absurd looking characters and absurd sounding dialogue. But hey, all for the glory, right?!Enjoy: … [Read more...]

The Mars Hill “Non-Compete Zone” in Seattle

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Here's a graphic showing how large the area is that ex-MHC pastors would be prohibited from ministering in if they signed the non-compete agreement at Mars Hill (upon pain of termination). With all the Mars Hill campuses and ministries, the answer is: LARGE. Like, uproot your whole life large. Like, sell your house and say goodbye to your neighbors large. But hey, that's empire business.HT goes to Stephanie Drury on this one. … [Read more...]

#FFFF: Hannah Ettinger

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This week's #FFFF isn't a submission - it's an excerpt from a recent post written by Hannah over at Hemant Mehta's blog about the New Calvinist movement and the SGM scandal. It's so informative, even prophetic - so I had to make it the Free Form Follow Friday this week. FOLLOW HANNAH! Here's the excerpt: The fallout from this has been fascinating, but it’s all evangelical inside baseball and pretty confusing if you’re not familiar with that world. As someone who spent ten years in SGM and left s … [Read more...]

The Non-Compete-Driven Church (i.e., Empire Business)

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For quite a while now, I've been arguing that influential movements within the American church have gone off the healthy, Jesus-centered rails and entered into the realm of empire business.I've explored two main categories for this phenomenon - Celebrity Christianity and Controlling Christianity - along with what I believe to be the solution: a deeply-rooted Creative Christianity (though you'll see more of the "solution" stuff at The Antioch Session). And honestly, the hits just keep on … [Read more...]

Breaking Wesleyanabaptist: A Story of (Resistible) Grace

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This post was first published at A Deeper Story.The senior pastor pulled me aside and, in his infamous dramatic baritone, directed me on how to lead the small group.“I need you to emphasize reprobation,” he said. “I believe it’s essential to understanding the gospel. And these people are way too soft when it comes to the absolute sovereignty of God. I’m a supralapsarian, you know.”The rigid small group structure of this Reformed Baptist church was such that each group had one leader a … [Read more...]

No Virtual Reality: Praying With Our Bodies [KrisAnne Swartley]

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There are two realities (maybe more?) that we live in these days - virtual and material. I am certainly not the first to take note of this, but it bears repeating. Sometimes the virtual world of social media, emails and texting seems more real than the material world in which my body exists. I walk into a restaurant and see the glow of screens as people share a meal together, but fail to look at or interact with each other in that moment. As they walk in the door at 3:45pm,I ask my kids how … [Read more...]

Ecclesial Agriculture [Fr. Tony Bleything]

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The American church needs tree farmers in the city.Want to know why?Because when trees are planted the environment is sustained. Once trees are removed in order to make room for some other vegetation (i.e. corn), then the earth must be plowed to make it ready for planting. This process of plowing, planting, and harvesting leads to erosion of the soil. Depending on the area, this process of plowing, planting and picking can take place about ten times before the earth erodes, and once it … [Read more...]

The Smell of a Place [David Kludt]

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I live in a beautiful and diverse neighborhood in northeast Los Angeles. Depending on which way I walk when I step outside my house, I enter either Little Armenia or Thai Town. Some of our favorite local spots are owned by Salvadoran and Filipino families. If I venture out bit further I walk through Koreatown, Little Bangladesh, hipster-filled Sunset Junction, or into the glamor of the Hollywood Hills.This might sound strange, but one of the ways I've recently been coming to notice and … [Read more...]


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