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Mockingbird is devoted to connecting the Christian message with the realities of everyday life in fresh and down-to-earth ways.

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    Tully: Ever-Present Wounds and Subdued Joy

    Tully: Ever-Present Wounds and Subdued Joy

    The following review was written by Caleb Ackley. Tully is now available on iTunes, Amazon, and other outlets as of today, July 17. Spoilers below.

    Charlize Theron isn’t a name typically associated with the average in society. Known best for her roles which require both acting ability and incredible athleticism — think suave assassin in Atomic Blonde or shaven-headed warrior in Mad Max: Fury Road — the name of Theron rarely evokes the pedestrian struggles of a stay-at-home mom. But the year is 2018, after all, and anything, it seems, is possible.

    Enter Tully, the latest offering from director Jason Reitman, which stars…

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    Char and Steph Wander the Desert: A Flashback to Ancient Israel

    Char and Steph Wander the Desert: A Flashback to Ancient Israel

    The following play — a precious relic from ancient Israel — tells the untold story of motherhood in Exodus. It was published in Mockingbird’s latest book, Unmapped, a memoir duet about spirituality, family, and finding home in unexpected exile. This is Act I of IV:

    Char and Steph Wander the Desert
    A Play by Charlotte Getz and Stephanie Phillips
    ACT I

    CHAR and STEPH, two young-ish Hebrew women, work side-by-side in a field making bricks out of clay and straw. They are just two women amongst thousands, and the sun beats down on them all without a trace of shade in sight.

    CHAR (wipes…

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    Hopelessly Devoted: Mark Chapter Seven Verses Fourteen Through Fifteen and Verses Twenty-One Through Twenty-Three

    Hopelessly Devoted: Mark Chapter Seven Verses Fourteen Through Fifteen and Verses Twenty-One Through Twenty-Three

    This morning’s devotion was written by Todd Brewer. 

    Again Jesus called the crowd to him and said, “Listen to me, everyone, and understand this. Nothing outside a person can defile them by going into them. Rather, it is what comes out of a person that defiles them… For it is from within, out of a person’s heart, that evil thoughts come—sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. All these evils come from inside and defile a person.” (Mark 7:14-15, 21-23, NIV)

    Jesus is talking about the origin of the great problems of life and how,…

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    Not Weak on Sanctification: Christians Grow in Reverse – Nick Lannon

    In this most prestigious breakout session from the 11th annual Mockingbird conference, Nick Lannon discusses the paradox of sanctification. Subtopics include: dentistry mishaps, good deeds, Han Solo, and the caverns of the heart.

    Not Weak on Sanctification: Christians Grow in Reverse – Nick Lannon from Mockingbird on Vimeo.

    Lord, I Was Faithless – Mary Karr

    Another wonderful poem from Mary Karr’s newest collection Tropic of Squalor:

    Lord, I Was Faithless

    I murdered you early, Father
    My disbelief was an ice pick plunged
    In mine own third eye

    Like damned Oedipus
    Whose sight could not stand
    What his hand had done

    And I—whose chief grumble
    Was my kidhood (whose torments
    Did fill many profitable volumes)

    Refused your pedigree
    I revised myself into a bastard
    Orphan rather than serve

    Like a poppet at your caprice
    One among many numbered
    To live size extra small

    Whole years I lost in the kingdom
    Of mine own skull
    With my scepter the remote

    I sat enthroned in a La-Z-Boy
    Watching dramas I controlled
    Only the volume on

    I was a poor death’s head then
    In my hook-rug empire
    With snowflakes of paper

    My favorite button is power

    PZ's Podcast: The Spider and the Fly

    PZ’s Podcast: The Spider and the Fly

    EPISODE 251

    Benjamin Britten’s ‘Spider and the Fly’ number from his Suite for “Johnson over Jordan”, by J.B. Priestley, takes you by surprise. It sounds like Gershwin at the start, then becomes a kind of danse, and is ultimately sinister. The composer meant it like that, for he was drawn to Priestley’s play because it concerns life after death; and Britten was interested in life after death during this period of his career.

    Priestley broke an English taboo, you might say — but it’s a taboo in our country, also, in practice — in his 1939 reflection on purgatory, and salvation, which…

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    Transgressors, Transgression, and the Perilous Bridge of Forgiveness – Ethan Richardson

    This packed-out session from MockingbirdNYC was all about the nitty-gritties of forgiveness in real life, the psychology of it, the messiness…and the risk. From editor-in-chief of The Mockingbird, and featuring clips from Three Billboards and This is 40 — you’ll laugh and cry:

    Transgressors, Transgression, and the Perilous Bridge of Forgiveness – Ethan Richardson from Mockingbird on Vimeo.

    The Great American Search for Happiness

    The Great American Search for Happiness

    With the Land of the Free in mind — and the inevitable FOMO that comes with the summer holidays — we’ve pulled this one from our archives. A collaboration of Ethan Richardson and David Zahl:

    In her article “America the Anxious” Ruth Whippman provides a Brit’s perspective on happiness, or at least, the American fixation on it. As a jumping off point, she talks about the palpable differences between the Facebook feeds of her friends on either side of the Atlantic. While her British friends are often dismissively even-keel about their daily lives, her American friends are perpetually fitting the narrative of…

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    For the Record: Summer Reading (From the Humor Issue)

    For the Record: Summer Reading (From the Humor Issue)

    Here’s to hoping there’s a beach in your future, or some other cosy spot to kick up your feet and soak in a good book. Below, you’ll find staff picks for this summer, taken from the recently released Humor Issue.

    On Our Bookshelf

    Everything Happens for a Reason (And Other Lies I’ve Loved) by Kate Bowler

    After having her first child and landing her dream teaching gig, Kate Bowler found out, at the age of 35, that she had stage IV colon cancer. Since then, she has had to live life in 3 month increments between treatments and scans, in the presence of…

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    PZ's Podcast: Bells Are Ringing

    PZ’s Podcast: Bells Are Ringing

    EPISODE 251

    This is a short riposte to the politicization of basically everything just now; but not in the way of taking sides, but rather in the way of digging deeper. I mean, digging deeper to the best and true interests of human beings.

    The best and true interest of human beings, the necessary condition for our welfare, exists in the direction of connection with another person; and, most typically (tho’ not absolutely always), a romantic connection. The best interest of us does not consist in political concerns and goals. As Sting sang it, in “Spirits in the Material World” (1981), “There…

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    Two Girls, Same Ocean – Charlotte Getz and Stephanie Phillips

    In this talk from our recent conference in NYC, Mockingbird writers Charlotte Getz and Stephanie Phillips attest to how God disrupts our lives—and rescues us from ourselves. Featuring life jackets, stretchy pants, and a warm sense of humor, there’s never been a Mockingbird talk quite like this one.

    You can find Charlotte and Stephanie’s book, Unmapped, here!

    How to Make Your Morning Devotion Go Viral (from the Babylon Bee)

    How to Make Your Morning Devotion Go Viral (from the Babylon Bee)

    For the past two-plus years, we’ve relied on the Babylon Bee for good, fresh humor that speaks to the unique…comedy of the Christian life. Here’s an excerpt from their book, How to Be a Perfect Christian: Your Comprehensive Guide to Flawless Spiritual Living. This, from “Chapter Five: Looking Really Spiritual Online.”

    It begins with an epigraph:

    “If a man reads his Bible but fails to post pictures of it on the Internet, did it really happen?” – Chinese Proverb, circa 2500 BC

    …to begin to revitalize your prayer life, you need to learn the biblical practice of posting pictures of yourself during your quiet times…

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