New Here?
     
About Guest Contributor

While we are currently at our maximum number of regular contributors, Mockingbird is happy to publish quality writing from guests. To submit something for consideration, simply email it to info@mbird.com. We can’t promise anything, but we will take a look. Naturally, the best way to get a sense of what we are looking for is to read the site.

Contact

Author Archive
    
    Wearing Black

    Wearing Black

    This one was written by Ann Lowrey Forster.

    I didn’t actually catch the Golden Globes on Sunday. On Monday morning, though, I watched Oprah’s dazzling speech and heard Natalie Portman’s perfect one-liner. I also saw the streaming in of men and women dressed in midnight and ebony and onyx. Oprah telling us about Recy Taylor and a new horizon gives everyone all the feels; and Natalie makes me want to join the fight, burn my bra, and kidney punch my husband just for possessing a Y chromosome. But, given a few days of reflection, something strikes me as a bit off.

    When…

    Read More > > >

    What Steve Jobs Taught Me About Life and Death

    What Steve Jobs Taught Me About Life and Death

    Grateful for this one by Nicholas Davis.

    I made the decision to purchase an iPhone years ago because I already owned a MacBook and an iPad (why not have the whole system, right?). Steve Jobs invention has taught me much about life and death.

    As a whole, I’ve been pleased with how little effort it takes on my part to accomplish virtually anything I want (short of making me my morning cup of coffee…there’s no app for that). From searching to syncing, to going “paperless” by scanning print documents, handling finances from my phone, reading the Greek New Testament with a tap…

    Read More > > >

    We're Better Than This (and Other Lies We Tell Ourselves)

    We’re Better Than This (and Other Lies We Tell Ourselves)

    Grateful for this reflection by Connor Gwin.

    In high school, I wanted to be the President of the United States.

    It was a humble goal. I was involved in politics on a local level in my small town in Alabama. I kept up-to-date on all the top political news. I was a top debater for both the Model U.N. and the Lincoln-Douglas Debate Club.

    When I got to college I immediately double-majored in International Affairs and Political Science and began mapping out my career. You know, work a few years in the foreign service through the State Department then transition to local elected…

    Read More > > >

    Is There Life After Law? A Few Reflections on Pauline Ethics

    Is There Life After Law? A Few Reflections on Pauline Ethics

    Another wonderful piece by Charis Hamiltonius, continuing from last week’s entry on Luther and Paul.

    “Shall we continue in sin in order that grace may abound?” This rhetorical question, dropped in the middle of Paul’s lengthy argument in Romans against a Law-oriented life, is not without merit. If grace is freely given to the ungodly, if the moral ordering of the universe is upside-down, and if our works have no bearing on our righteousness before God, then a reader of Paul’s letter would understandably wonder whether Paul cares about morality at all. To this question, Paul emphatically says, “HELL…

    Read More > > >

    Losing the Floaties by 40

    Losing the Floaties by 40

    This one was written by Heidi Fields.

    I was only two years shy of 40 when I decided to learn to swim. I was only half joking when I asked the swimming instructor if he had adult-sized floaty rings for my arms. I was only two years out of the womb when I rocked the ruffled two piece and yellow shades in this photo.

    Despite having an innate, Milan-esque aqua fashion sense, I usually avoided pool parties and beach activities as a child. I was like oil and water was like water. Mixing the two of us was more awkward than boys…

    Read More > > >

    Thor: Ragnarok - When The Unjust Are Freed and Those Hurt Are Left Without A Home

    Thor: Ragnarok – When The Unjust Are Freed and Those Hurt Are Left Without A Home

    This review was written by Caleb Ackley. (Spoilers ahead.)

    After having grown extremely used to superhero films presenting gritty realities in harsh, dark tones, I was initially off put by the trailer for the latest Thor installment. Candy-colored and none-too-serious, this, it seemed, was uncharted territory and I proceeded to the theatre warily- excited, at the very least, to see Jeff Goldblum in blue makeup-but unsure of what to expect beyond that.

    The film begins with Thor in a kind of pseudo-underworld where Chris Hemsworth (the ever-muscular and flaxen-haired), while taking on a fiery enemy and his minions, is given a chance…

    Read More > > >

    Psychomachia, 8-Balls, and Alien Righteousness

    Psychomachia, 8-Balls, and Alien Righteousness

    This one comes to us from RJ Coburn.

    Psychomachia is the name given to the common trope found in movies, television, and comic strips when a character is dealing with temptation. Two versions of his or her self appear, an angel version and a devil version. Commonly, the devil is on the left shoulder (or standing on the left, if shown as a full-sized person) and the angel on the right. This represents the battle of the soul, or as Homer tells Lisa on an episode of The Simpsons, “Inside every man is a struggle between good and evil that cannot…

    Read More > > >

    Law and Gospel in Luther and Paul

    Law and Gospel in Luther and Paul

    A theological tour de force by none other than Charis Hamiltonius:

    You may not have heard, but the 500th anniversary of the unofficial start of the Protestant Reformation happened recently. Praise of Luther and his theology took my Twitter feed by storm as every theology nerd weighed in on the merits of Luther and the significance of the Reformation. This post aims to assess one of Luther’s central themes—his theology of Law and Gospel—and the relative value of his reading of Paul. Some find a great deal to appreciate about Luther’s reading of Paul, while others find less textual support.

    The…

    Read More > > >

    Go Gently

    Go Gently

    A beautiful reflection on family and the Advent season by Andrew Taylor-Troutman.

    And we think that we can’t write that for which we do not have words but actually sometimes you can if you go gently between the words. Brian Doyle

    The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light. Isaiah 9:2

    It is a week before Christmas and I tell my oldest son: “It is a big responsibility to be a big brother.” This three year old stares at me blankly from across the room, then continues playing with the nativity scene strewn across the floor in a mishmash of…

    Read More > > >

    20 Years Later: Reflecting on the Ageless Imputation of Good Will Hunting

    20 Years Later: Reflecting on the Ageless Imputation of Good Will Hunting

    This timely reminder of the (timeless) emotional punch packed by Good Will Hunting comes to us from Sam Guthrie, twenty years after the film’s release.

    Twenty years ago, a few no-name actors from New England wrote a screenplay about a math prodigy from South Boston. With the help of stars like Robin Williams and Stellan Skarsgård and the vision of director Gus Van Zant, Good Will Hunting became a hit and kickstarted the careers of Matt Damon and Ben Affleck (as well as his brother Casey) who in time would all become household names.

    Out of the numerous gems in the treasure chest of Good…

    Read More > > >

    Raising the Stakes Is Lowering the Stakes for Justice League

    Raising the Stakes Is Lowering the Stakes for Justice League

    From Justice League expert Jeremiah Lawson, here is an insightful look at the recent holiday season blockbuster.

    It may be a law of blockbuster cinema that there is an inversely proportional relationship between how high the stakes are raised in explicit and implicit narrative terms and the actual significance of said stakes. In a phrase, when everything is at stake, you can be relatively confident nothing is at stake, and this is, in sum, a weakness that the film Justice League can’t shake off.

    The plot is as follows: in the wake of Superman’s death through Kryptonite exposure and injuries fighting General Zod,…

    Read More > > >

    Bad at Love

    Bad at Love

    This one was written by Anna Nott.

    I am convinced that I, perhaps along with a good portion of the rest of the world, continue to listen to Halsey’s hit “Bad at Love” for more than just the fact that it’s super catchy. The lyrics are profoundly confessional, stating:

    I believe, I believe, I believe, I believe
    that we’re meant to be.
    But jealousy, jealousy, jealousy, jealousy
    Gets the best of me.
    Look, I don’t mean to frustrate, but I
    Always make the same mistakes, yeah I
    Always make the same mistakes ’cause
    I’m bad at love!

    When she sings, “I believe that we’re meant to be, but jealousy gets…

    Read More > > >