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April  2013

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My Teenager Made Me Finally Grow Up


May 1 2013
The unexpected surrender of parenting adolescents
My Teenager Made Me Finally Grow Up
Tammy McGary / Flickr

New parents are often told that giving birth to a baby makes them adults. That 'round-the-clock responsibility for another human is a life-altering shift that pushes us into our next life stage. Responsibility alone didn't transform me into a true adult, but ...

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Madonna's Humanitarian Diva Moment


Apr 30 2013
Lessons from the singer's outburst in Malawi.
Madonna's Humanitarian Diva Moment
Adam Sammler

Earlier this month, Madonna visited Malawi with her children, and, though she'd requested to meet with President Joyce Banda, she didn't get to see her nor received any sort of special treatment from the government. And apparently, upon leaving the ...

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Ignoring Worker Injustice Won't Make It Go Away


Apr 30 2013
Taking the source of our shopping seriously.
Ignoring Worker Injustice Won't Make It Go Away
Craftivist Collective / Flickr

My seamstress died last week. She was crushed when an eight-story building fell on her. It's tragic. I'm outraged.

Somehow, the clothes on my back—the clothes I bought and will buy—are intertwined in what could be Bangladesh's worst ...

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Hashtags Won't Heal Us


Apr 29 2013
Learning to lament in the 21st century.
Hashtags Won't Heal Us

As a culture, we tend to think of grief as healthiest when abbreviated and restrained, as seemingly quick and efficient as other aspects of our fast-forward, high-tech lives.

Even mental health experts disagree over what "normal" grief looks like. ...

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Hey John Piper, Is My Femininity Showing?


Apr 26 2013
The implications of allowing women to teach "indirectly."
Hey John Piper, Is My Femininity Showing?
Library of Congress

In a recent podcast, John Piper describes acceptable ways for women to exert public influence. As he explains why men can read biblical commentaries from women, but not be taught by them in person, he reveals some profoundly troubling assumptions about women ...

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Saying No to the Cutesy Baby Nursery


Apr 25 2013
We made room for our newborn, just not a room of her own.
Saying No to the Cutesy Baby Nursery
Antruz Photo / Flickr

I knew I had passed the ambiguous "Is she chubby or is she pregnant?" phase when people started posing direct questions about the baby like "When are you due?" or "How far along are you?" Later in the conversation, they'd ask, ...

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Tears at the Table


Apr 25 2013
My 'holy discontent' over hunger in America.
Tears at the Table
Rachel Lynne Smith / Flickr

Earlier this month, I watched A Place at The Table, a recent documentary about the food crisis in America. As a writer and an eater and an avid home cook, this is a topic I care very much about—I read everything I can get my hands on related to the topic ...

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My Cynical Christian Reality Check


Apr 24 2013
How Pope Francis taught me about my own Christian stereotypes.
My Cynical Christian Reality Check
Boston Catholic / Flickr

Headline after headline, story after story, we read about how Pope Francis is doing things differently. Eschewing the pomp and traditional trappings of the papacy, he refused the fur-trimmed half-cloak and golden cross in favor of a plain white vestments and ...

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Thrift Shop Theology


Apr 23 2013
Poppin' tags with an unlikely spiritual teacher.
Thrift Shop Theology
Macklemore / YouTube

You can tell the brand of my daughter's jacket whether or not she's facing you, its white logo is stitched on the front and back. I'd resisted buying her this North Face fleece for months. For one, she is not a "wilderness chic" kind of ...

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Loving Someone Who's Starving For Perfection


Apr 22 2013
Our relationships can't cure eating disorders.
Loving Someone Who's Starving For Perfection
Chantel Beam / Flickr

Alongside the millions of women in the U.S. with eating disorders stand millions of boyfriends, fiancés, and husbands desperate to help, but unsure where to start. For the last two years, I've been one of these men. My fiancée Kelsey has anorexia, ...

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I'm Sick of Hearing About Your Smoking Hot Wife


Apr 19 2013
Sex in marriage beyond sayings, stereotypes, and Song of Solomon
I'm Sick of Hearing About Your Smoking Hot Wife
Tiffany Bailey / Flickr

When a man brags about his wife's looks, body, or smoking hot prowess, we may consider his remarks loving compliments from a husband to his better half, but when I hear a man say those things, I bristle. Especially if he's a pastor, a man apportioned ...

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A Labor of Love: The Birth Doula


Apr 18 2013
Caring for new moms starts in the delivery room.
A Labor of Love: The Birth Doula
Soren Oxenhave / Flickr

Home-birth midwives and high-risk obstetricians agree: the U.S. cesarean rate is too high, and while there doesn't appear to be any single good explanation for it, a recent study from the University of Minnesota points to a solution already well-known to ...

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You Talk Like a Girl


Apr 17 2013
How vocal fry affects women in the church.
You Talk Like a Girl
Andrea Rose / Flickr

Even if you've never heard of "vocal fry" or "upspeak," you probably hear people speak in these patterns every day.

Vocal fry is when someone's voice gets lower and turns gravely, usually drawn out at the end of a sentence. It's ...

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Sex Ed and the City


Apr 16 2013
New York's text campaign doesn't connect with teens.
Sex Ed and the City
Md Saad Andalib / Flickr

"What should you say to a guy if he says: 'I don't like wearing a condom'? Text your reply." The text was just one of many that popped up on my screen in what felt like the most unfortunate times—including at church on Easter Sunday—as ...

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