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How Poor Could They Be?


Jul 18 2014
On going broke and getting judged.
How Poor Could They Be?
michieldijcks / Flickr

After I confessed some of the stupid decisions we've made during our financial dry spell, a woman told me her family, in similar straits, went to Disney World: "We'd paid for the trip before my husband got laid off. We couldn't get a refund. To cancel seemed ...

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Why Pastors Should Preach About Body Image


Jul 16 2014
Our obsession with appearance has theological ramifications for both women and men.
Why Pastors Should Preach About Body Image
mikemelrose_ /Flickr

Have you ever heard a sermon about body image?

Aside from the occasional side comment, I've never heard body image given substantial treatment from the pulpit or serious attention from leaders in the church, which is surprising since body image is not a marginal issue ...

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6 Crowdfunding Myths for Christians to Consider


Jul 16 2014
Online fundraising can be a great ministry resource… if done right.
6 Crowdfunding Myths for Christians to Consider
itupictures / Flickr

The world has seen crowdfunding campaigns for everything from high-tech fitness gadgets to, more recently, a very expensive potato salad. In fact, in 2013, crowdfunding—a term for the process of gathering contributions, typically online, for a specific project—was ...

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Secondhand Suffering: The Grief We Often Overlook


Jul 11 2014
As the church rallies in times of tragedy, let’s also help the helpers.As the church rallies in times of tragedy, let’s not forget to help the helpers.
Secondhand Suffering: The Grief We Often Overlook
ktoine / Flickr

When a 19-year-old college student from our church went missing, our entire community sprang into action. Search parties were assembled, prayer teams were gathered, and social media campaigns were launched. Hundreds showed their support, and together we mourned when she was ...

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Faith Unsettled


Jul 8 2014
Pushing beyond the easy-believism of evangelicalism.
Faith Unsettled
Shuttershock

Jen Pollock Michel

Like a lot of writers, I read about the writing life. (A little bit of company is welcome in the solitary stretches of time.) In her book on writing, Negotiating with the Dead, Margaret Atwood suggests, "Writing has to do with darkness, and a desire ...

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Mercy in the Name of God, Not Government


Jul 3 2014
How our country’s religious freedoms might prompt us to care for immigrants.
Mercy in the Name of God, Not Government
amberlina / Flickr

Jose and his wife Alicia lived in a white clapboard house on a dusty caliche road about a quarter mile from my grandparents. Nobody knew how they'd gotten across the U.S.-Mexican border or how long they'd been here. Jose just turned up one morning looking for work ...

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To Publish a Predator


Jun 16 2014
What the regrettable Leadership Journal post reminds us about the nature of sexual abuse.
To Publish a Predator
Connor Tarter / Flickr

In 1958, Vladimir Nabokov rocked America's sleepy, conservative culture with the publication of Lolita, the story of a middle-aged scholar obsessed with a 12-year-old girl. Lolita is perhaps the most brilliant, well-crafted example of a literary device called "the ...

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Have We Forgotten the Power of Touch?


Jun 5 2014
Embracing healing touch in a culture that shies away from physical contact.
Have We Forgotten the Power of Touch?
patrickgage / Flickr

Jean was in her 80s when she first came to see me for massage therapy. She suffered with severe pain in her hip where age and arthritis had conspired to cripple her, but had only succeeded in making her walker-dependant.

From the moment I touched Jean, I could feel the ...

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Christian Comparison Isn't Pretty


Jun 2 2014
Resisting the pressure to dress-up our lives for church friends.
Christian Comparison Isn't Pretty
tmarsee530 / Flickr

Every Saturday night, I do something that I really hate. I wish I could stop, but the temptation is far too great. Every Saturday night, without fail, I spend a shameful amount of time mulling over this oh-so-not-important question: What am I going to wear?

I live in an ...

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Female and Made in My Father's Image


May 28 2014
Just because I’m a “she” doesn’t mean the Creator I reflect has to be.
Female and Made in My Father's Image
martinaphotography / Flickr

I'm my dad's spitting image. My fair skin, strawberry blond hair, analytical mind, and impatience with all things not just-so come straight from him. Anyone who knows me and knows him knows that I am my father's daughter. The fact that I am made in his image does ...

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