When God Showed Up

Cross

I'm sitting on a hill on a farm in Pennsylvania in late June with hundreds of other sweaty bodies. The speaker in the front is talking about reconnecting with his estranged father and for the first time, I realize that my faith has never really been my own. He gives a call for salvation at the end of this talk, and while I'm pretty sure that I've been saved my whole life, I stand up, because today I feel like salvation isn't just about getting to heaven, but maybe about something deeper in the right now. +++++ I'm in a church service, singing God of Wonders for the hundredth time. It feels rote and tired, so I close my eyes because I know that I can appear spiritual, even if I’m just trying to rest. I’m a mom with three young children and a fourth on the way and while my eyes are … [Read more...]

Stuff I’ve Been Reading

Stuff I've Been Reading graphic

Quick update - I actually finished the introduction and two sample chapters that I needed to get to my agent. She's going to be editing them, and then I will edit them, and then we'll start sending it out into the world. In the meantime, I'm focusing energy on my presentations (yes, TWO) for Wild Goose. So thank you for your patience while things are slow here on the blog. One of the most beautiful bits of writing I read this week came from John Blase. If you read nothing else, make sure you read this. A close second in the beautiful writing category is this short piece by my friend Andi about buying her wedding dress off the rack. If you like that, be sure to snag her ebook that is free right now! As I've been Very Busy (tm) lately, this piece by Jen Luitwieler reminded me to slow … [Read more...]

When You Hate Everyone

hate

So here's something about writing a book about conversations between Christians and atheists that no one told me. It kind of makes me hate everyone. I hate the atheists. I hate dismissive language being used about religious people when I'm sitting right there.  I hate that when I'm trying to find something to dispute a misconception, all I can see is how the misconception is 100% true. I hate that I know all of the arguments before I even hear them. And I hate the Christians. I hate seeing the political process manipulated to make atheists look like bullies. I hate seeing God reduced to "nice, manageable chunks" (as my friend Susan said) through the same apologetics process. I hate seeing people write that they hope that the children of atheists are gang raped and that they die a … [Read more...]

Stuff I’ve Been Reading

Stuff I've Been Reading graphic

Hi everyone! I hope you've had a great week! I miss being around here, but things are going well. I've got the introduction and first sample chapter off for edits. I hope to finish up the other sample chapter this week at which point I will try to get back to a more regular blogging schedule. Thank you so much for your patience through all of this. You can keep up with things a little bit more frequently at my Facebook page. Now for some of my favorites from this week. I really appreciated this response to the Zimmerman verdict last night by Christena Cleveland. We absolutely must be willing to acknowledge our privilege, especially as Christians.  My dear friend Sonny Lemmons wrote a lovely reflection about being a dad and how he grew into that role. I've been missing that guys … [Read more...]

First World Problems

first world problems

I get to do a ton of things that I love. I teach piano lessons to some of the most interesting kids and adults. I get to play in a cover band with some of my very favorite people. I get to be a stay-at-home-parent to my kids. I get to see my husband every day. I get to work on writing projects that feed my soul and that I hope will be beneficial to other people. I get to speak about topics that are meaningful to me. I live in a time when I get to converse with friends who are near and far with minimal effort. So I should never feel overwhelmed, right? I should just be happy, happy, happy because I get to do all the things that I love, right? Except nope. I feel overwhelmed anyway. I absolutely understand how lucky I am. Don’t get me wrong - I’ve worked really hard to be able to do … [Read more...]

Family Vacation

I spent all of last week on vacation. It was a little bit up and down, but once again, I had the opportunity to make some lasting memories with people who I love. Today I'm writing at A Deeper Family about family vacations. I would love it if you'd head over and give it a read. Also, this is probably the last thing you'll see here for a little while. Rachelle spoke with some editors last week at a big book event and now I need to invest big time in the writing of my sample chapters so that they have something by which to be amazed. I will absolutely get back to blogging (and if the mood strikes, I may blog while I'm working), but for the most part, I'm taking some time off to get this done. I so appreciate all of the amazing support you offer me. I can't wait to continue to share … [Read more...]

Stuff I’ve Been Reading

Hello, friends! The summer is rolling quickly along and tomorrow I head out on vacation with the family. As such, I'll be taking the week off from blogging. But I will be sending out a newsletter this week at some point, so if you'd like to read something, you can sign up here. And now, on to my favorites of the week! One of the first things that I read this week was this piece by Leigh Kramer. It's brutally and beautifully honest. I can't wait to give her a big hug next weekend. My kids are huge fans of Minecraft. Like, they all of matching t-shirts declaring their love of the game. And I'll be honest, I just don't get it. So I adored (!!!!) this post by Heather King in which she admits that she doesn't get it either. My friend Ed Cyzewski wrote a fantastic post about why he … [Read more...]

Worshiping Together: The Interfaith Marriage of a Christian Minister and Hindu Monk by J. Dana Trent

Mixed Up Faith

Today I'm thankful to be able to host J. Dana Trent in this series. She and her husband are just a few short months away from the release of the book about their interfaith marriage. I love the way that she shares about the difficulty and the beauty of navigating a marriage when you and your partner have different faith perspectives. If you’d like to contribute, check out the details here. +++++++++++++++ East-Meets-West I am an ordained Southern Baptist minister married to a devout Hindu who formerly lived as a monk. Theology in our household is messy and beautiful; Fred and I do our best to merge our east-meet-west life with a simple mantra: we always worship together. I attend Hindu temple, he attends Baptist church. We’re together in the thick of it—navigating Scripture, … [Read more...]

Exodus International Proves People Can Change

change

Last night Alan Chambers, president of Exodus International announced that this ex-gay organization would be shutting down. This announcement came less than a day after Mr. Chambers offered an apology to the LGBT community for the way that Exodus specifically, and the Church in general, have treated them. In a candid interview with Jeff Chu, Chambers specifically renounces the idea of gay-to-straight conversion. Naturally, there are a number of people who are skeptical of the apology and wary of the future plans of those involved in the organization. And I think there is reason to hold that. Nearly 40 years of damaging teaching is a lot of history to overlook. When you have been a part of systemic oppression, your words will be scrutinized at a higher level. Exodus has caused a lot of … [Read more...]

An Everlasting Meal and A Moveable Feast

pancakes

  My dear friend Preston Yancey is neck-deep in book stuff right now, so he's hosting a guest post series on his blog about formative meals. I am so honored to be a part of this series. The meal I'm writing about today happened a few years ago, but it's still one that I think about with much fondness. I was in a not-great place, and this time with my friends was a balm to my soul. I'm so grateful that I have this memory, and people in my life who are there in the dark times. I'd love it if you'd head over to Preston's place to give this a read. … [Read more...]