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The God Who Needs

You could be forgiven for thinking you are no longer necessary. Since March, a flood of unemployment has judged countless people “non-essential.” But you don’t need to be waiting in the unemployment line in order to feel superfluous. Employed ministers cannot conduct crucial services in-person, while therapists feel helpless to guide their clients over Zoom. […]

When the Romans Got Infected

Grateful for this post by David Evans: Even though the media has called these months dominated by COVID-19 “unprecedented times,” historians have been quick to point out that epidemics and plagues are anything but unprecedented. Modern historians have reminded us of the Spanish Flu of 1918; medieval historians would ask us to consider the Bubonic […]

Masked Morality

The yarmulke, the burka, the hijab, the grey flannel suit, and the pork pie hat are all governed by cultural sanction and personal projections of belief. All are inwardly meaningful and outwardly expressive of that meaning; what we wear is far more than mere personal preferences for comfort or functionality. Undeniable sartorially manifested morality, messaged […]

May My Virtue Signals Be Transformed Into Love

If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, […]

Godliness Cozies Up to Our Mess

I have struggled lately to be patient with messy people. If I’m honest, I have likely always struggled with this, but I see it acutely now. My faith (as I evolve in my understanding of it) continually drags me back to important truth — everyone deserves love, everyone and everything is likely redeemable, and cleanliness […]

The Gospel According to Hamilton

This piece by Cort Gatliff was originally published in January of 2016. For more from Gatliff (and others) on all things Hamilton, check out the Mockingbird Hamilton guide! My life can be divided into two distinct eras: Before Hamilton and After Hamilton. On October 1, 2015, after months of following the online hysteria and critical […]

Justification, Work, and Me: A Parable of River Jack Stones

One is not justified by works, but through faith. Saul of Tarsus may have been the best press agent ever. In several letters he wrote the above words, but I somehow find that talk difficult to walk. Paul murderously pursued the small collective of Jewish believers in the Messiah. They blasphemed against God, and Paul […]

“You Meant It for Evil”: The Gift of Unintended Consequences

Thankful for this post by David Clay: In his 1956 essay, “On Being Conservative,” British philosopher Michael Oakeshott speaks not so much of a conservative ideology but rather of a conservative disposition, which is that of preserving what is good about one’s present circumstances in the face of inevitable change. According to Oakeshott, to be […]

Sticking Our Necks Out: Judgement in the Age of COVID Phases

Life is judged with all the blindness of life itself. – Santayana My friend recently admitted that he and his wife had invited people over for dinner. Plenty of qualifiers were set in place—not only did everyone eat outside on their porch, but their guests were mindful enough to bring their own food, their own […]

Get on the Bus: Fatherhood, Vulnerability, Redemption, and Grace

At the heart of Spike Lee’s travelogue Get on the Bus is a message that politics can’t save our communities. Ultimately, we need dads to be dads to their kids, whatever that looks like. Though he tends to lean left in his politics, this rarely touted 1996 film retains a fairly conservative message that “it […]

The Death of Desire Is Not Adulthood: The Millennial Burden to Grow Up

This summer, as graduation parties are celebrated across the country, older teenagers will find themselves expected to swiftly eject from a liminal stage they began only a few short years prior. Dwelling in the uncomfortable region between childhood and adulthood, it will be impressed upon them to direct their verve towards and subsume their fears […]

The High Cost of Change

A few weeks ago, an Instagram influencer mentioned how her husband had recently developed a curious fixation with The Weather Channel. Every morning, she would come downstairs to find him preparing breakfast with one eye on the forecast. “Hey, honey, check out these storms over Texas,” he would say. And that’s exactly what she would […]