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In a preaching class a male fellow student said, “You sound just like my mother.” His body language and vocal intonation said it all: Bad Thing. The professor marked my sermon manuscript, “A,” with the addition of: “Superb.”  Read more
A wise friend once told me that the best time to take a vacation is when you feel least able to do so. I believe the same may be true concerning prayer and worship. If I have learned anything from working at CBE, it is that prayer is the source from which abundant ministry flows. Here are a few examples from the ministry of CBE. Read more
Sister Gertrude Morgan made a record. She made it using crayons, poster paint, pens, and even shoe polish on all kinds of surfaces from cardboard to canvas. She made it using spirituals, gospel hymns, shouts, chants, and songs she made up on the spot, sometimes accompanied by piano, guitar, and always with percussion. She made it in orphanages, prisons, street corners, jazz festivals, art galleries, and her living room. She made it in the Lower Ninth Ward of New Orleans. Read more
“You’re what?” “Are you kidding?” “Is that some sort of a joke?” “How do you make that work?” “Aren’t you a walking contradiction?” These are the typical responses I get when folks find out that I’m an evangelical male college professor who teaches feminist studies. I’ve been teaching courses on history and gender for over a dozen years now; I’ve also spent most of that time as a volunteer leader with my church’s senior high youth group. Both in my career and ministry, I am committed to reconciling what many think can’t be reconciled: feminist principles and Christian faith. Read more
I was born into privilege thrice over. I am white; I am male; I am American. And all that privilege provides me with the shortcut, the front row seat, the illusion of my own sufficiency. Yet, I need help, and I need it terribly. How terribly? Let me tell you a little about it. Read more
I can’t remember a time when I did not think women were equal to men. My parents’ upbringing must have indoctrinated me before I was old enough to know that some people disagreed with them. What did my parents tell me? My guess is, it was never mentioned. But I clearly remember being impressed when I was very young with my father’s utter devotion to my mother and my thinking that girls and women were about as close to angels as you could get on earth. (My understanding has since expanded, but I still think some of them are.) Read more
“How many babies does she have in there?” I exclaimed as my seven-year-old daughter altered my drawing of a pregnant woman. Sarah giggled and proceeded to make my stick figure ten times the size of any mother of multiples. Read more
I believe that left-handed people are fully capable and called by God for ministry. I believe left-handed people can serve in ordained ministry or any other capacity, just as right-handed people can. However, some oppose left-handers. They believe that God made left- and right-handers equal in essence only, while denying them access to certain vocations. Ordained ministry is for the right-handers only, as the claim goes. Believe it or not, the Bible does portray left-handers in ministry. Take Judges 3:15: “Again the Israelites cried out to the Lord, and he gave them a deliverer — Ehud, a left-handed man...” I’m guessing you have never heard of Ehud, I know I hadn’t until I met a few left-handers trying to respond to their calling…. Read more
As a spiritual director, I recommend to people who are trying to heal childhood religious experiences that they return to the scene of the crime and forgive people for what happened. Little did I know that I had another important step in my own process of forgiving people for my childhood religious experiences. It caught me completely by surprise. A religious women’s book group chose to read my book, The Critical Journey, and asked me to speak to them about the journey of faith. I arrived at the leader’s home eager to have a dialogue about faith with this group. The hostess greeted me and I met a few of the other women over coffee and cookies before we started. Then we all met in the large family room for our conversation. After introductions, the leader asked me to give my personal testimony, so I told my faith story, including the ups and downs of my faith, a few of the gifts and pains of my early religious experiences, my training as a spiritual director, and my role as a healer in the arena of domestic violence.  Read more
As a spiritual director, I recommend to people who are trying to heal childhood religious experiences that they return to the scene of the crime and forgive people for what happened. Little did I know that I had another important step in my own process of forgiving people for my childhood religious experiences. It caught me completely by surprise. Read more

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