The waste of love

Oct 23, 2018 by

I wake up with a dark hole of emptiness eating through my chest, and it takes me a second to realize why. My little girl is gone. The child that I loved from the minute I set eyes on her is gone. I still...

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From sharing to testimony

Oct 19, 2018 by

As a young adult I was part of Campus Crusade for Christ (now Cru), and learned to write a three-minute testimony as a way of sharing my faith with other people. What was my life like before coming to Christ?...

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Reflections on Ukraine: Can it happen again?

Oct 17, 2018 by

Women in Odessa, Kherson, Zaporozhe, Dnipro and Kiev adorn themselves in the colors and fragrances of happy gardens that belie Ukraine’s brutal history. Men without shirts in the villages of what had been...

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Lost and found

Oct 15, 2018 by

We love boundaries. We put them up all the time. Our countries are not the only things in life that are divided by borders. These boundaries may help us define who we are, but they also can lead us to assume...

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A formula for atheism

Oct 12, 2018 by

A few years ago the pastor of an evangelical-fundamentalist church with whom I’m acquainted announced on the Sunday after Easter that he had become an atheist. He told his stunned congregation that he had...

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A civil rights reunion

Oct 10, 2018 by

While on the faculty of Harvard Divinity School in Cambridge, Mass., J. Lawrence Burkholder participated in an integration effort on March 31, 1964, in Saint Augustine, Fla., which made headlines in newspapers...

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Returning to our commitments

Oct 8, 2018 by

In 2015, the Delegate Assembly of MC USA passed the Churchwide Statement on Sexual Abuse. It says: “We lament that sexual abuse exists not only in our society but also within our own homes, congregations and...

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Show mercy like Jesus

Oct 5, 2018 by

A common perception is that Christians lack compassion, humility and kindness. Fair or unfair, the impression has stuck that we in the church often resemble the biblical Pharisees. One commentator refers to...

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A journey to cover

Oct 2, 2018 by

“Excuse me, Ma’am.” “Yes?” I said, a little surprised by the short-haired, long-bearded man with tattoos covering his forearms. I had just buckled my littlest child into his car seat and was...

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I am the weaker brother

Oct 1, 2018 by

When we believe we are right about something, how do we behave? How do we treat those with whom we disagree? I’m not talking about issues of sin, but what of disputable matters — issues that are not very...

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Who is Rahab?

Sep 28, 2018 by

Rahab is mentioned three times in the New Testament. However, we know her best from her story which is found in the Old Testament book of Joshua. If you aren’t familiar with the story of the prostitute from...

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The quest for a nonviolent religion

Sep 27, 2018 by

The good news is human beings are a lot less violent today than at any other time in human history. The bad news is religion has been — and continues to be — a major contributor to violence. Those are a...

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Mennonites and empire

Sep 26, 2018 by

Every Mennonite in the small town of Goessel, Kan., knows the date 1874. It is emblazoned on the “Turkey Red Wheat Palace,” erected on the centennial of Mennonites’ migration to the Great Plains from...

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The catch

Sep 25, 2018 by

A meditation on Luke 5:1-11. Once while Jesus was standing beside the lake of Gennesaret, and the crowd was pressing in on him to hear the word of God… We grope for what is spiritual-but-not-religious....

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Are truth and unity mutually exclusive?

Sep 24, 2018 by

I love the paradoxes of God: “God is love,” the Bible states, but it also says, “God is holy.” God is portrayed as both the vulnerable lamb and the wrathful lion. He is king and servant, Alpha and...

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Behind the scenes of making a hymnal

Sep 18, 2018 by

What is your all-time favorite hymn or spiritual/religious piece of music? If you go to church and participate in regular worship services, you also likely enjoy the songs and hymns most churches count as a...

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What belief should cost us everything?

Sep 17, 2018 by

Nike’s new 30th anniversary ad campaign featuring former National Football League quarterback Colin Kaepernick is causing a bit of a stir. Kaepernick is famous for his decision to kneel during the American...

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Mennonite identity amid the Fresno fiasco

Sep 12, 2018 by

A lot of talk has been happening in the Mennonite Twitter world (which is a pretty weird overlap of two very different realms) in the past few days about changes in a master’s program at Fresno Pacific...

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Fresno Pacific’s theological cocktail

Sep 10, 2018 by

Last week, Mennonite World Review reported that Fresno Pacific University in California had removed the president of its seminary, Terry Brensinger, and announced that pastors Greg Boyd, Brian Zahnd and Bruxy...

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Change without a bang

Sep 4, 2018 by

As a child, one of the things that fascinated me about Mennonites of the past was dress, particularly the head covering. What would it have been like to be marked, physically, by your religion? To have people...

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When Christians sell out Christians for political power

Sep 3, 2018 by , and

There’s a story in the Old Testament about the king of Babylon, Belshazzar, who hosted a dinner for his religious leaders and royal elites. The blindingly arrogant king, surrounded by adoring sycophants,...

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Our hymns shape our church

Aug 27, 2018 by

“Out of the fullness of the heart, the language of each mortal springs. If you would truly know a man, just listen to the songs he sings.” — Amish hymn writer John Paul Raber, Songs from Within...

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Truth is knowable — his name is Jesus

Aug 20, 2018 by

Our small group met a few days ago and once again enjoyed moments of laughter, food, spiritual discussion and prayer together as we discussed the Gospel of Mark. At one point, we briefly discussed how to...

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Balancing the needs of introverts and extroverts in the church

Aug 16, 2018 by

“What are you reading?” my bus mates asked me on tour this summer. “Quiet by Susan Cain. It’s about why introverts deserve to live.” Leave me alone; I’m reading. The subtitle of the book is “The...

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Our responsibility as clergy regarding abuse

Aug 15, 2018 by

In what has to be one of history’s most poignant, trenchant ironies, Tuesday’s report from a grand jury in Pennsylvania about decades of sexual abuse by predatory priests and of cover-ups in high...

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