A Love Letter (and Warning) to Progressive Christianity

Fundamentalism wasn't pressed upon me as a child. No, I chose it for myself. While I did grow up in a Christian household, my dogmatic approach to faith was more a result of a well-intentioned - but misguided - attempt to be recognized as the smartest person in the room. I also loved to read.…

The Lost Voices: Stories from the DeChurched

We need to start listening. Too often, we dismiss those leaving the Church as outliers, or unfaithful prodigals. We rarely take the time to listen to their grievances, or if we do we simply chalk up their exodus to moral failure, lackluster devotion, or compromised allegiance. But maybe some of it is our fault. Maybe…

The Future of Religion, or Why Church Needs to Change

The religious landscape of the United States is undergoing a massive cultural shift. In September 2017, the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) released the "single largest survey of American religious and denominational identity ever conducted." According to the study, in America: 43% self-identify as "white and Christian," compared to 81% in 1976. 24% self-identify as…

Christians and Violence: Seven Tough Questions and Responses

The first time I heard about Christian nonviolence, I thought it was ridiculous. My struggle with Christian nonviolence was a result of the multitude of questions the stance generates. I gradually came to learn that these questions were normal. It's what happens when you're entire paradigm shifts on such a comprehensive issue. I grew up…

Eight Books That Will Blow Your Mind and Challenge Your Faith

About a year and a half ago, I changed how chose which books I read. Prior to my decision, I read books purely for knowledge - reading became a way to obtain intellectual insight into the mysteries of God and faith. And I soon found myself losing the joy of reading. Because reading became a…

Less Is More: Reclaiming Christian Simplicity from the American Dream

Our stuff is killing us. The average American home includes more than 300,000 individual items. Our closets average 103 individual items per person, even though we only wear twenty percent of our wardrobe with regularity. According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, Americans collectively spend more than $1.2 trillion on nonessential goods. The…

Thoughts on Sex, Vulnerability, and Spirituality After a Year of Marriage

It's been a year since I've become one flesh with my wife. We married in a muggy parlor room in a historic home surrounded by friends and family after our wedding venue was flooded by a torrential downpour the day before our wedding. "And the two became one flesh" is one of the Bible's favorite…

Love at the Table: The Gift of Hospitality in an Era of Isolation

Despite near-limitless opportunities for connectivity, millennials are finding themselves in a world of increasingly dire social isolation. Popular television shows like Friends, How I Met Your Mother, The Big Bang Theory, and New Girl¬†depict modern urban life as an endless parade of zany misadventures, unannounced visitors, and group hangouts. No one is ever bored. No…

The Good Book, or How I Learned to Stop Defending and Love the Bible

Have you ever been embarrassed by something in the Bible? Or wished the Bible just left some stuff out? And I'm not talking about a hard teaching on money or a convicting verse about orphans and widows, but one of those passages that makes you pause and go, "Uh-oh." Like, you're chugging along on your…