Back when I was pregnant with my oldest son, I wound up without a place to live. The counselor at the crisis pregnancy center which was helping me navigate this time reluctantly referred me to a homeless shelter/half-way house for single moms as a last resort. She didn’t come right out and say it, but my sense was that she was none too impressed with the way the program there was run. And she was right. In the year and a half that I lived there, not one of the women who went
Just for fun, how about I start off the week by pissing everyone off? And what better way to piss everyone off than by talking politics? Specifically abortion and politics. And even more specifically abortion, politics and the faithless Christian response to both. Now there’s a recipe for upsetting everyone! See – we’re having fun already! Almost since Roe v Wade was handed down 40 years ago, high profile (and many not so high profile) Christian preachers have been warning th
Perhaps it’s inevitable, but the older I get, the more radical I seem to be becoming. It all comes from thinking that Jesus really meant all those crazy things he said and, you know, actually wants us to do them. I mean a lot of effort has gone into trying to put the Jesus stamp of approval on the comfortable American dream and a lot of people are happy with the result. But the red letters are still there in the bible. And all it takes is to try to follow a few of them for a
“For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires, and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths.” – 1 Timothy 4:3-4 As a general rule I do my best to adhere to the policy that one ought to promote what one loves rather than bashing what one opposes. But today, I feel the need to warn y’all about the ear ticklers.
Let me be clear up-front: I do not support a right to abortion on demand. In fact, if I were made ruler of the universe, I would make abortions enormously difficult to get. Because I’m a mean and cruel woman. No, not really – I’m actually very kind and empathetic. But I am in agreement with Mother Theresa: “it is a poverty to decide that a child must die so that you may live”. I don’t think abortion is an answer to what is really a societal failure. I don’t only oppose aborti
So, are you sick of the arguments yet? You know the arguments – Romney vs Obama. “Job Creators” vs Inequality. Creationism vs Evolution. Pro-Choice vs Pro-Life. Old Fashioned vs New Fangled. Text Speak vs Grammar Nazi’s. Toilet Seat Up vs Toilet Seat Down. Whatever it is, if we can figure out two ways of looking at an issue to divide ourselves into, we do it. And then we argue and argue and argue. We refine our arguments and wonder what the hell is wrong with the people who d
I like to say that I grew up in the “Easy Listening” phase of American Roman Catholicism. We sang “On Eagle’s Wings” with a guitar accompanist and hung felt banners around the sanctuary. My cousins attended a church that had alter girls and interpretive dancers. An opera singer who attended our church was sometimes allowed to lead songs and children regularly got smacked in the back of the head for giggling when she stretched to hit really high, screechy notes. Which was bett
I saw a sign yesterday which said “‘Let’s agree to disagree’ is just another way of saying ‘you’re wrong but too stupid to change your mind so let’s stop talking about it’.”Oddly enough, my husband has repeatedly proposed getting through this election cycle by “agreeing to disagree”. And here I was thinking he wanted to agree to disagree because he was feeling threatened by my razor sharp logic and superior grasp of facts! I wonder why we have such a hard time dealing with pe
OK, my week had eight days in it this week. But it’s a holiday, so you won’t notice anyways and we’ll just keep it to ourselves, k? BTW, can anyone tell me if hyper-dramatic 6 year old girls ever work the histrionics out of their system. Or is this just our ramp up for her teen years? Cuz if she keeps this up, her bedroom door might end up as damaged as mine is from all the slamming. Although maybe that would help – I haven’t slammed my bedroom door in ages because it’s compl
I came across a post by Greg Boyd today which I think makes a great follow-up to my post earlier this week – Our Faithless Culture Wars – that I hope you will go read. The choice excerpts for me: We sadly assume our highest calling is to be the high priests of Caesar’s court, telling it how God allegedly wants it to spend its money.
Of course, being the high priests of Caesar’s court means you’ve got to get into the messy complexity of this court. How do we know that fighting
A while ago, I finally realized that I needed to take Jesus’ teachings much more literally. He said, “don’t judge” and I said, “I’m not judging, but clearly some things are wrong. It’s not judging to say that.” He said, “love, pray for and serve your enemies” and I heard, “love the sinner, hate the sin.” He said, “do not resist the evil man” and I signed petitions against groups and politicians in order to protect Jesus’ values. Jesus said, “so do not worry, saying, ‘What sha
I grew up among very upstanding people who did not break rules and we all know the rules: no talking about religion, money or politics. (They added in sex as well. I think a lot of people did.) And since those were the rules, they didn’t talk about those things. And on the rare occasions that someone did mention politics, religion or money, they seemed to think that since they were already going to be breaking the rules, they might as well be rude about it. Which meant t
Donuts. . . Mmmmmm This may come as a shock to people who thought I was a rational human, but I have a confession to make: I was a political junkie. It’s true. I followed every twist and turn of our democratic system at play. Cuz a properly functioning democracy relies on a well informed electorate. Your granddad used to read the paper front to back every day. There were psa’s in the middle of my sitcoms telling me to “be informed” when I was growing up. What can I say?
Believe it or not, figuring out what’s good about people is a great past-time as well. It’s challenging, satisfying and makes you feel better about the world. It’s the gourmet meal of human relationships. There are always people in our life who cause us to yearn for a delete button to use on them. It could be our child’s principal or some politician or your own family. Instead of just letting them drive you nuts over and over, make yourself look for something you could ge
This American Life on NPR. The story I was listening to was about 2 middle class guys who became homeless in New York City and lived in the streets for a couple of years while becoming writers. While being asked about what it was like to be homeless, the men noted that there is no such thing as a hungry homeless person. This is because there are soup kitchens all over the city. Then they said something which I’ll just paraphrase: “There are all these churches that run sou
While it is all to the good that fatherhood is getting more attention, I’m very concerned that the call to “get involved in your children’s lives” is so generic and out-of-touch with the difficult realities on the ground that it will end up as a joke. “Just say no” for the war on fatherlessness. The fact of the matter is that there are reasons that men are not involved in the lives of the children they father. They run the gamut from the very selfish to the practical to th
1. Oil. Obviously oil costs too much. Obviously we need to find ways to cut back. Obviously what we are doing isn’t sustainable in the long term. However, the reality is that our best case scenario right now is to cut back and go through a transition period away from heavy dependence on oil. Which means that for the foreseeable future we will still need the stuff. So, it drives me nuts that we refuse to allow drilling and oil exploration either on or off shore in the US
Black Power from the Pulpit” about Jeremiah Wright which places him and black liberation theology in the context of the black church and the message of Christianity. It is actually an interview with Thabiti Anyabwile who wrote the book: The Decline of African American Theology. Mr. Anyabwile is a critic of both black liberation theology and the state of many black churches, without being one of the many jingoists we’ve heard from lately who think saying, “they’re racist” co
If someone wanted to know more about Obama, wouldn’t they , you know, do some research into his positions (hint: they’re liberal), look at his voting record (hint: liberal, democrat), read his books (hint: smart, thoughtful, liberal), talk to people who went to school with and worked with him (hint: universally liked)? I mean the idea that we just have NO IDEA what Obama’s really like so it’s only natural that we would look at who he’s friends with to discern what has been s
“Transcending Race and Delusional Conservatives” outlining several ways that mainstream conservative thinking about race is wrong. (And I am coming at this as a conservative myself, mind you.) Today, in the Washington Post, Gary MacDougal wrote a column titled “Jeremiah Wright’s Wider Toll” which is one of the worst examples another conservative misconception about race that I have seen: the “if they would just get over it, they would be successful” meme. The premise of th