Tag Archives: christianity

fallen gifts

This weekend, I made a list and went shopping at a couple of stores several miles from my house. I wandered the aisles looking for the perfect presents to ship off to friends wrapped in paper and string, then selected groceries in another store. I was riding the bus, so I chose things carefully: 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 […]

of dust and ashes

“Say something I’m giving up on you.” It is a mournful day in Oregon, with thick heavy rainclouds and thick hearty rain, sky the color of ash. The air feels holy, and I am wearing black. The air feels holy, and I am treading an old, old path to God, a path crowded this time […]

when God was a breaker

I’ve been reading through some of my journals from my teen years. I wrote out my prayers back then, and boy, did I pray a lot. In many of those prayers, I have a bunch of names in quotation marks. “Sheree,” “Mark,” “Lullou,” “Connall” … It took me a while to recall who these people […]


They spoke in hallowed tones of the mountaintop: the place where you reach a high point of sanctification and Christian maturity, and the presence of God is as palpable as that pillar of fire to the exiled Hebrews of old. We heard, and we believed. That fire was up there, somewhere. We couldn’t see it […]

Nineties nostalgia, Jesus edition

If Tumblr has taught me anything, it’s that the Internet is a wormhole of nostalgia. So it’s May 2013? That doesn’t mean we can’t endlessly memorialize everything that happened in, say, April 2013. And the nineties? Ancient history! Let’s recap/review/reblog our formative years/yesterday before we get old and/or before Yahoo ruins the Internet. But for […]

On leaving fundamentalism

I didn’t know I was a fundamentalist. I knew the theology I’d been taught was conservative, that everyone I knew was a Republican, that faith didn’t exist outside a proper reverence for TULIP and Rush Limbaugh. I knew the Religious Right like the back of my hand, and that peoples are saved with legislation. I […]

burning up the planet

There’s a little university town in Oregon called Corvallis. It’s a small town big on environmental sustainability. Green everything. Bikes everywhere. A ban on plastic bags, even. Sometimes people laugh at the city’s progressive eccentricities; they roll their eyes and say “Oh, that’s so Corvallis.” While some of their policies are a bit, erm, overbearing, […]

On sex, the church, and chewing gum

Last week, abduction and rape survivor Elizabeth Smart spoke at a John Hopkins human trafficking forum, explaining why she didn’t try to cry out for help or try to escape during her nine-month ordeal: because she “felt so dirty and so filthy” after being raped. Raised in a religious community, she had been taught the […]