Hello, hello and welcome to the weekend. Some STELLAR picks this week, starting with this score card for Bingo for Moms:
BINGO!!!!!! (I win! I win!!)
On to other meatier, more edifying things:
So good: Tish Harrison Warren’s Our Beautiful Broken Christian Ancestors: an excellent essay on grappling with good and evil in our forebears.
“We belittle the gospel when we paper over wickedness or weakness in our heroes and traditions,”, and “to value church history requires a willingness to learn from sinners.”
Which reminds me of this fabulous NT Wright meme I saw on Twitter this week:
Nicole Cliff’s How I Pray is such a wonderful read: her reflections on discovering prayer as a new, adult believer – what’s weird and corny, what’s precious, how it’s changing her and what the treasures are is worth reading for everyone – whether you’re a lifelong believer or an avowed atheist (be warned: Dallas Willard is a gateway drug.)
Such beautiful and challenging words from Liz Ditty as she held her infant daughter and worried about all the woes that life might bring: The Promise God Would Not Make Me.
Speaking of fear, Jessica Mesman Griffiths wrote about her greatest fear in Heartbreak and Shipwreck, and I so did not see that coming. Such good stuff (as always) from her.
Stephanie Rische writes about a very unexpected moment when they met with a pastor from South East Asia in The Hidden Blessing of Your Darkest Days. This is worth bookmarking and thinking over:
“Here I’d been wondering how his faith could stand up under so many trials, and he was wondering how my faith could stand up without them.”
I find this compelling: Jackie Roese on 3 Things Christians Get Wrong About Christian Leaders.
Thought-Provoking read from J. Nicole Morgan: God Loves My Fat Body:
“As a teen, I thought that being a good, effective Christian meant being thin. Fatness was associated with a lack of self-control, one of the fruits of the Spirit,” and
“(G)luttony is a sin that runs rampant in our society, but it does not rest solely on the hips of those who are fat. One can engage in gluttonous behavior and remain thin. One can be fat and not be struggling with gluttony. Jesus himself was accused of being a glutton (Luke 7:34)—which shows how imperfectly we assign and judge this particular sin.”
SO IMPORTANT: What’s Wrong With a Hug, from an anonymous writer at Gifted for Leadership, telling the story of what happened at their church when a volunteer at their vacation bible school kept wanting to hug a 10 year old, even though she asked him not to. Was the kid impolite? At what point should the church or parents (or social services) get involved?
“The problem with an unwanted hug is not that it’s a hug, but that it’s unwanted.”
This is fabulous from Tim Urban: 10 Types of Odd Friendships You’re Probably Part Of. I definitely have some of these friendships. Funny, insightful, and weirdly helpful.
Winner posts on Facebook this week:
- from 21 year old Rachel Marie, who was registered as a foster parent on her 21st birthday, and is on a campaign to show how life-saving and do-able this is: read her brief post here.
- from Merritt Smith, whose response to a hospital worker when her daughter was being stitched up after being injured by a classmate got a MIGHTY HURRAH from this mama.
On the blog this week:
Melody Mobley’s powerful story of being a Black Woman in a Dark, White Forest. I hope you got a chance to read this.
An “Ask Me Anything” question from a reader: “Help, I can’t stop dreaming awful, terrible things!” (I particularly loved the input from readers in the comment section on this one. THANK YOU)
An excellent perspective on kings and presidents for believers: Voters in the Valley (an exclusive excerpt from Tim Gaines and Shauna Songer-Gaines’ new book Kings and Presidents)