Category criticism

Immodest Proposals: Elephant in the room

I was thin as a kid. Always big for my age, but not chubby. Then I hit puberty and got wider before I got taller. Stretch marks etched into my thighs, my face rounded, and I felt thick and overstuffed and elephantine. I grew self-conscious about the reverberations of my steps (did I sound extra-heavy?), […]

Immodest Proposals: Brothers and sisters

Let’s talk about how the modesty rules affect relationships. I would contend modesty-conscious girls relate to people differently than anyone else — but not necessarily better. In Christianity, there’s a long history of referring to other believers as brothers- or sisters-in-Christ, as, the doctrine goes, we are all adopted by God the Father into his […]

Immodest Proposals: The Rules

If you didn’t grow up in an evangelical context, a homeschool community, or a Red State, you may not understand what the big deal is with modesty. American society oversexualizes girls from a young age, teaching them to find value solely in beauty and to dress to please men. Isn’t it refreshing and good to give […]

Immodest Proposals: An introduction

In days of old, some Mesopotamian philosopher, probably King Solomon, claimed there is nothing new under the sun. If you’ve ever doubted the truth of that sentiment, just join a social media platform. Every few months — like clockwork, like sunsets, like seasons — some blogger writes a post about modesty, and thousands of moms share […]

Bathsheba and the myth of unconscious seduction

“The Scripture says ‘[David] was a man after God’s own heart.’ He was a man who wanted to please the Lord. He didn’t get up that morning and say, ‘I think I’m going to lust after a woman. I think I’m going to commit adultery. I think I’m going to kill this man so I […]

In the beginning

Where does the gospel begin? That old story of darkness made light, the broken made whole? When does it start? This is a gospel I have heard: In the beginning, God breathed himself into the dirt, forming Adam and Eve in a beautiful garden to be a glorious, living metaphor of God and the Church […]

Sure, dance with God, but not to earn a husband

“Draw close to God, and God will draw a man close to you.” — not James 4:8 At the end of my first year at summer camp, my counselor gave each of my cabinmates and I a personalized journal. On the back page, in pretty gel pen ink, she wrote out a poem she loved, […]

The petticoat gospel

“Nostalgia is denial — denial of the painful present. The name for this denial is golden age thinking: the erroneous notion that a different time period is better than the one one is living in.” Paul, “Midnight in Paris” Seventeen-ninety-seven was not a particularly holy year. People were born and died. John Adams became U.S. […]

Millennials and Adam’s missing rib

SCIENCE POP QUIZ: How many ribs do men have? How many ribs do women have? If you answered twenty-four to both, you are correct! RELIGION POP QUIZ: How many ribs do men have? How many ribs do women have? If you answered twenty-four to both, you are doubting biblical inerrancy, have succumbed to the lies […]

I love the new Star Trek even though it’s terrible

[Beware, there be spoilers here.] It’s as bad as you’ve heard: The plot goes from zero to sixty and ends up nowhere. John Harrison is more threat than villain. Uhura isn’t so much a character as she is Spock’s Girlfriend. Sulu, Chekov – are they even in this movie? Guns! Blasts! Crashes! Surprises! Wait, why […]