If you’re anything like me, I LOVE it when bloggers make a list of their favorite posts from the past week.  Several of the blogs I follow do this regularly, and I get so excited to see a page full of links just ready for me to dive into!

AND if you’re one of my Facebook friends, you know how much I love to hit that “share” button to recommend something I really liked!  So in order to pass on the blessing of some really great writing and give my Facebook friends a break, I thought it would be fun to share some of the favorite things I’ve read lately.  In keeping with the focus of my blog on ideas relevant to parenting and Christian spirituality, my links will probably mostly reflect these themes, but I’m not above throwing-in some fun and surprising ones every once in awhile!

Happy Weekend Reading!

My Favorite Clicks

“In which words like ‘real’ and ‘true’ mean things”, by Sarah Bessey

We use words like “true” and “real” in reference to womanhood or motherhood or marriage, and I think it’s wrong to do this. We use these words like they are freeing or universal or helpful, but they are forging new chains for a new law.  There is no such thing as “real” woman or a “real” man. If you are a man, you are a real man. If you are a woman, you are a real woman.

“Her Way” by Kelley Johnson Nikondeha

Then I remembered this modern proverb: “The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.” (Frederick Buechner) And what if I raised my son so he’ll know intimately, expansively, and truly his deep gladness so he’ll recognize his calling in God’s hungering world? What if part of my parenting is to familiarize him with his deep gladness so he’ll find his way, his vocation?

“For the Mom Who Hates the Swings” by Meaghan Francis, The Happiest Home

Because we’re allowed not to like things, right? Even as moms. We’re allowed not to love reading The Cat in the Hat or playing with toy cars. We’re allowed to really dislike the process of mixing orange cheese powder with milk and butter to create sauce for macaroni. We’re allowed to be icked out by sticky hands or repulsed by enormous boogers.We’re human. We all have our strengths, as parents and as people. And we all have the things we’d rather not do. Sometimes we do those things anyway, because it comes with the job; but we aren’t always going to love it. We don’t have to love it all.

“The abusive theology of ‘deserved’ tragedy” by Rachel Held Evans

What’s worse than the world seeing Christians disagree with one another is the world seeing Christians remain silent when their own go on TV and tell the parents of children lost in a tornado that those children and their families got what they deserved. What’s worse than the world seeing Christians disagree with one another is the world seeing Christians remain silent and supportive when their own are accused of multiple counts of child abuse and appeal to the first amendment to try and avoid investigation.What’s worse than the world seeing Christians disagree with one another is the world seeing Christians perpetuate an abusive theology that teaches people that whatever abuse they are suffering, whatever pain they are enduring, whatever violence they have been subjected to, is deserved and perpetrated by god.

“On God, Storms, and Asking the Hard Questions,” Addie Zierman at How to Talk Evangelical

And all the canned answers will be right in their own way. Yes, God is in the rubble. Yes, God is in the hallways, covering those babies like a Mama Bird. He is in it too, dirt-streaked and weeping. He knows every name, every lost bit of it, every broken heart bleeding out in pain.

But also, he is the God who speaks to storms, who rebukes winds. He is powerful enough to stop all this, and sometimes he doesn’t. Tragedy comes, and it seems like he’s taking his sweet time showing up, and you can’t shake the feeling that if he had just Been There, this would all be different.

And there’s no rushing through that. These question, they matters, and it’s okay if it makes you doubt. It’s okay to be angry. It’s okay, even, to wonder if this whole thing is real at all.

“Examining Adoption Ethics- Part 2,” by Jen Hatmaker

Adoption is as complicated as the number of people, countries, stories, and processes involved. There is no one story. What is true for China is different in Guatemala. What is happening in Ethiopia has no relevance for domestic foster care. The best we can do in a public forum like this is take a high view of adoption and insist on ethical practices, transparency, and a commitment to help and not hurt. While your personal adoption may be completely legitimate, as a community, we still must guard against systemic weak links and refuse to discredit obvious failure within the movement.

“The Whole Can of Worms at a Glance,” by Jamie the Very Worst Missionary

Where some gentle people suggest that if any good comes from sending short-term teams into the world, then it’s all worth it, and I get a liiiittle ballsy and maybe compare short-term missions to the crusades. Sorry.

“Do You Believe in Original Sin?” by Jonalyn Fincher

Instead of decimating our reason and morality, original sin is more a human sickness, a contagious disease we’re born into, which makes it quite hard to be good, true and beautiful all the time.

Perfect Humans?

Hard, but not impossible.  Here Dr. Franks, argues that we are born with consequences of sin (think of the baby born to the heroin addict), but we are not born guilty (the baby is not guilty for his addiction). In making this statement, Franks is breaking with Augustine and Calvin.


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