Learning the Art of Sketchnote Preaching [C. Wess Daniels]

Two years ago I spent the month of September writing the majority of my dissertation, “A Convergent Model of Hope: Remixing the Quaker Tradition in a Participatory Culture.” During the third of my four weeks off I hit a major wall. I had written three chapters and was at the point that I needed to bring together a variety of key ideas and thinkers and I just couldn’t figure out how they all wove together - not exactly where you want to be this late in the game but that is where I was with it. My … [Read more...]

What Do You Do When You Don’t Like the Bible? [Mandy Meisenheimer]

What do you do when you don’t like the Bible? Recently, The Resurgence posted some tips by Ryan Kearns about how handle biblical passages that make you feel uncomfortable:Rejoice that you are reading the Bible rightly. Study and try to understand the context of what you are reading. Observe your culture and lives and realize that they are not normal. Ask in community, seeking conviction in your own heart for parts of your life that must change to conform to Christ. Pray, asking … [Read more...]

Quit Worrying [KrisAnne Swartley]

Small to medium sized traditional churches with long memories + a changing culture that increasingly finds our traditions irrelevant to daily life= decreasing attendance and tithing = high levels of anxiety.Is it too much of a generalization to say that this is the context in which most pastors in the Northeast United States minister? It is certainly my context, although hope is present as well. Not long ago, it was time to lead our congregation through change, and we let them know that the … [Read more...]

The War Is Over; It’s Time to Stop Fighting [Anderson Campbell]

It was the day after Christmas, 1944. In Europe, the Battle of the Bulge was in full swing. On the other side of the world Hiroo Onoda, an elite Japanese soldier and intelligence officer, was dropped behind enemy lines on Lubang Island in the Philippines. His mission was to link up with a small group of soldiers already on the island and conduct guerrilla warfare and covert operations. The departing orders from Onoda’s commander, Major Taniguchi, were clear: You are absolutely forbidden to die b … [Read more...]

Ending Well [Levi Holland]

Leaving a place that has become home is difficult. It's unnatural really. We connect to a place and a people, understand the lay of the land and the ethic of a society. To simply uproot is not only becoming increasingly unpopular within a "local movement" orientation, but it is incredibly painful. This is a story about my family doing just that, uprooting from one place to replant ourselves in another.Ending well, as I have learned, is an artform, not a template. When I told 30 students and … [Read more...]

#FFFF: Jason DeMeo

If you want to get into a lively debate with anyone, just ask them a variation of this question: Which _________ was the greatest of all time? Which basketball player, singer, actor, writer, and especially rapper. Let's take a moment to ask the rappers themselves...Jay-Z (Who refers to himself as J-Hova, as in Jehovah): I drop that Black Album then I back out it/As the best rapper alive, ***** ask about me. Nas (Who refers to himself as God's Son) My first album had no famous guest ap … [Read more...]

Having Faith in the Priesthood of Believers [John Hawthorne]

But you are God's chosen and special people. You are a group of royal priests and a holy nation. God has brought you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Now you must tell all the wonderful things he has done. The Scriptures say, “Once you were nobody. Now you are God's people. At one time no one had mercy on you. Now God has treated you with kindness.” 1 Peter 2:9-10 I am not a biblical scholar or theologian. I'm a sociologically oriented social psychologist who studies evangelicalism. And … [Read more...]

A Uniquely American Christianity [Kevin Shoop]

Growing up in the Midwestern United States in the 1980s, I absorbed a very specific vision of Christianity. It was a Christianity that viewed the cultural revolutions of the late 1960s and 1970s as a catastrophe of immorality and a willful rebellion against God. It was a Christianity that dove head-first into national politics in order to change the country’s culture. It was a Christianity that rejected progressives like Jimmy Carter, and embraced conservatives like Ronald Reagan. Specifically, e … [Read more...]

#FFFF: Matt Greene

Is there beauty in the body? No, I'm not talking about tanned skin and trim waist lines. What I am referring to is the body of Christ. Is there beauty in this body?I have an older brother, he's one of my best friends in this life. He's one of my biggest supporters and he's had a huge influence on me as a writer and musician. But, like any siblings, growing up we had our fair share of disagreements.As a kid I didn't realize he was one of my best friends. I knew I wanted to be like him … [Read more...]

#FFFF: Emily Dause

I grew up believing that being married one day was a crucial part of my existence. Finding the man I was meant to be with would complete me.  I didn’t learn these ideas from Disney movies or pop music on the radio. I learned these ideas at church.When sermons regularly focused on marriage, adults told me to listen and store the truth away for my future union.Sunday School teachers shared their fervent prayers for their children’s future spouses.Camp counselors drew diagrams to sho … [Read more...]