#FFFF: Mark Moore

I grew up in an extremely patriotic family. My grandfather was in the Navy and was a Pearl Harbor survivor. He was in the shower when the attack happened and spent the first half of the battle in a towel—the second half without a towel. This is real life Braveheart kind of stuff.My dad was in the Navy and served in Vietnam. He built runways for American planes to land on, all of which are still there to this day. I was proud of him and I was proud of my country.I grew up in the 80’s wat … [Read more...]

#FFFF: Sheldon Steen

The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) made headlines last week at its 221st General Assembly. At this weeklong gathering the body made a number of decisions, most of which are overshadowed by the two biggest: the decision to allow pastors the discretion to perform same-sex marriages and to divest from three companies that sell products to Israel for military purposes. These are obviously watershed moments for the denomination. One publication described the decision on same-sex marriage as a “ … [Read more...]

#FFFF: Andy Gill

I used to be a pastor, a youth pastor to be exact, but I quickly came to find that church wasn’t for me. The churches I attended felt more like country clubs for the elite, where we learned how to appear moral and nice, it was the message of, "Be everything but who you are."I was tired of pretending. I was tired of lying. I was tired of feeling forced to put on a mask every Sunday morning.I grew up in a caucasian conservative evangelical church, and have worked in only conservative e … [Read more...]

A Hermeneutic from Dystopian Fiction, or Creating as an Act of Love [Kevin Shoop]

"If you act according to a belief, that is the same thing as having the belief." – Margaret Atwood (Toby, quoting Adam One, in MaddAddam)“We read to know we’re not alone.” – William Nicholson, Shadowlands***Before you begin reading, you should know the following:I will not be discussing the Hunger Games series or the Divergent series. I haven’t read or seen any of the books or movies. I will be sharing some thoughts about Margaret Atwood’s MaddAddam trilogy, which includes Oryx … [Read more...]

I Know My Place [Kelly Green]

I am about as capable of changing another human being’s mind as I am capable of changing the direction of the wind. I just don't have that fight in me anymore. Arguments have never helped me see Jesus. I’ve been wrestling with this as I’ve moved away from seeing life as a series of problems and solutions, as Dorothy Sayers discusses in her theologically rich book, The Mind of the Maker. As a woman, I am trying to take this to heart when it comes to issues of gender equality. My role is not to pre … [Read more...]

Truth and Power: Looking at Evangelical Crises [John Hawthorne]

I've started many posts on my blog with a similar phrase: "there was an interesting debate going on in evangelical social media this week." But lately, this sentiment comes off as trite. It feels like every day we've got multiple Twitter fights going among evangelical groups: progressives calling folks out for being abusive, conservatives writing on false prophets, people being called heretics over pronoun usage, others confronted over misuse of scripture. Frankly, it's hard to keep it all … [Read more...]

Ordination: Stuck or Sent? [Levi Holland]

Ordination: A ritual of the church as a discerning body to recognize, endorse and empower one for the service of Christian ministry. It is distinct because the one being ordained is touched, the hands of the elders are laid upon them, bestowing faith, love and spirit. It is a very intimate moment - but is it selling out to a denomination? Is it conforming to a narrow view of church, rooted in one vein of an entire body of believers? These are questions that I had to ask in my evolution of … [Read more...]

In the Deep End With Grief: Thoughts On Pastoral Care to Those Hurting Most [C. Wess Daniels]

I find it hard to carry the weight of my own pain, let alone the weight of another. I have found that the grief we carry is sometimes so heavy, so disorienting, even - sometimes - so embarrassing (how could I let this happen me?) that it is hard to share that weight or let it out. The weight of grief is compounded by the inability that we all experience of isolation and being unable to see beyond it. Grief is a lot like floating out in the middle of a deep lake, nothing close by to grab onto. … [Read more...]

Beyond Consumption: Participation in the Local Church [Daniel Karistai]

Before I dive in to the second part of these installments exploring what Participation can and maybe should look like I want to give an important caveat to everything I write below - especially in light of all this tragedy that has come out of Sovereign Grace Ministries and the JPUSA:  You are made in the image of God and that means you are entitled to be treated with the upmost respect and dignity that Christ extended to the "least of these".  If we take Christ's words seriously in the Great Com … [Read more...]

Awakening Mosaics [Tara Lamont Eastman]

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...]


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