18 hours ago
-Rachel Held Evans gives ten tips for dealing with online critics.
Brokenness, whether physical, emotional, or spiritual, is not good. It comes as a result of sin in our world. As Jesus demonstrated throughout his ministry, God wants to heal broken bodies, broken minds, broken souls, and broken communities. God wants to heal our broken world.
But limitations existed before sin entered the picture, and limitations will remain. Limitations are a part of what make us human. They keep us both dependent upon God and connected to one another. Limitations provoke trust, community, and humility. God gives us limitations. Limitations are good.
-Over at Jesus Radicals, Nekeisha Alexis-Baker responds to a recent Relevant Magazine article about Trayvon Martin with, "It's not about the f**king hoodie."
This is where the notion of the inspiration of Scripture comes in, says Wright.
“’Inspiration,’” he says, “is a shorthand way of talking about the belief that by his Spirit God guided the very different writers and editors, so that the books they produced were books God intended his people to have.”
Hmm. I've never heard it explained quite that way before. Wright then goes on to offer an explanation of what is meant by “the word of God" - and this really got my attention.
“And in and through it all, we find the elusive but powerful idea of God’s ‘word,’” he says, “not as a synonym for the written scriptures, but as a strange personal presence, creating, judging, healing recreating” (emphasis mine).
Hugo, a man who has committed very serious crimes against women, is now writing articles at Relevant Magazine about women’s issues. And there are some problems with that.
The first problem is, Relevant refuses to disclose Schwyzer’s past. There was no disclaimer on the article, no mention of his abuse in the article.
Not only that, but Relevant actively silenced voices that informed readers of Schwyzer’s past.
Why is that important? Because I’m a real person. Because the people to whom I have ministered in Jesus’ name are real persons. We’re not hypotheses, fables, or legends. And we need real healing, all of us. While our realities may be largely socially constructed, we have real DNA, real physical, material properties.
Thus, since the resurrection of Jesus is his defeat of death, evil, and grief, it’s important to me that it really happened. Without a resurrected Jesus, Christianity is impotent. And I don’t mean a Jesus who was “resurrected” in the Disciples’ hearts and in my heart. I mean a real resurrection in the space-time continuum by a physical being known as Jesus of Nazareth, as 99.99% of Christians for the last two millennia have believed. (Loc. 351-357)
Another reason why I have such a huge crush on Sullivan!
It seems no accident to me that so many Christians now embrace materialist self-help rather than ascetic self-denial—or that most Catholics, even regular churchgoers, have tuned out the hierarchy in embarrassment or disgust. Given this crisis, it is no surprise that the fastest-growing segment of belief among the young is atheism, which has leapt in popularity in the new millennium. Nor is it a shock that so many have turned away from organized Christianity and toward “spirituality,” co-opting or adapting the practices of meditation or yoga, or wandering as lapsed Catholics in an inquisitive spiritual desert. The thirst for God is still there. How could it not be, when the profoundest human questions—Why does the universe exist rather than nothing? How did humanity come to be on this remote blue speck of a planet? What happens to us after death?—remain as pressing and mysterious as they’ve always been?
Coming from an evangelical background, I was taught that the only thing the cross represents is Jesus paying the price for our sins. I never thought of the cross as a symbol of God identifying with human suffering. But the more I thought about it, the more it made sense. If Jesus is the second person of the Trinity, then that means God was hanging on that cross in agonizing pain. Think about that for second: Elohim the creator, the great I AM, hanging on a cross, rejected, humiliated, and dying.You can read the rest here.
As someone who has struggled with depression and anxiety since early childhood, this was a message I needed to hear. Even though it has been called ‘the common cold of mental illness,’ depression has a funny way of making me feel completely alone. No one else can possibly understand what I’m going through. If I try to put it into words, it won’t make any sense. But if God knows human suffering first hand, then maybe I’m not so crazy after all.