My Problems Are Worse Than Yours

This doesn’t happen often. But when it does, I notice it big time. I’m sitting in bible study—this was years ago, mind you—and a person shares with the group: “My biggest sin is pride.” And I’m like, really? Make no mistake, pride is destructive. Just read King Lear. But there is this feeling I get when someone’s problems sound less of a big deal than…cough, … Continue reading My Problems Are Worse Than Yours

What I Long for the Most

“Rachel, are you joining?” A woman at church points to a stack of paperbacks in her Amazon Prime box. I stare. Open my mouth. Close my mouth. “The women’s Bible study?” she adds. Oh. Bible, good. Women, good. Studying together, good. “Yes,” I say. She hands me a copy of the study book. I examine the Instagram-perfect cover: Seasons of Waiting: Walking By Faith When … Continue reading What I Long for the Most

What Saying Goodbye Taught Me About the Gospel

What does saying goodbye to your cat have to do with the Gospel? Guest blogger Jenny Rose Curtis reflects: Have you ever had to say goodbye? The kind of goodbye that leaves you with an awful sort of emptiness you can’t shake? As silly as it sounds, one of the hardest goodbyes I’ve ever faced was when I took my cat to the no-kill shelter. … Continue reading What Saying Goodbye Taught Me About the Gospel

What’s Up With That Pentecostal Girl?

What does it mean to be Pentecostal? Guest blogger Nicole Ponder has the scoop: I recently took a spiritual giftings test and scored highest in the following three things: Gift of Hospitality Gift of Discernment Gift of Tongues “Yep, okay, those make sense” was my reaction as I read the results. This was not my first giftings test in my thirty-one years. In fact, it was … Continue reading What’s Up With That Pentecostal Girl?

Give Me Real Christianity

He’s a world-renowned evangelist. Millions of people have become Christians because of him. That should sound inspiring to me. Instead, I sit in the thousand-seater church, picking at a peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwich, and mentally consider my dessert options for afterwards. Donuts To Go or an Oreo McFlurry? I know what’s coming: an altar call. I dislike altar calls. I find them confrontational and emotionally-manipulative. (Read more about … Continue reading Give Me Real Christianity

What Happens When You Judge Me

I’ve encountered the holier-than-thou attitude in Christian circles more than once. My friend recalls a man in church who once told him: “There are first-class Christians and second-class Christians. First-class Christians are on fire for the Lord. They love Jesus, they come to church every Sunday eager to worship, and they read their Bible a lot. Second-class Christians, well, they just don’t get it. They … Continue reading What Happens When You Judge Me

How To Be Resilient

After Jesus, wine-tasting, and scandalous literary fiction, my next favorite hot topic is emotion. Past blog posts include: Feeling Offended, Feeling Paranoid, Emotional Labor, Hungover At Church, all that jazz. As a millennial very much entrenched in our self-care culture, I keep hearing: Be honest with yourself, be in touch with your emotions, don’t suppress negative feelings, introspect—habits that I’m told are healthy. Especially as a … Continue reading How To Be Resilient

What I Used to Believe

“I’m struggling with my faith.” Nothing sounded more annoying to me than those words. And I heard it all the time. From my Christian friends to my fellow churchgoers, from coworkers to pastors. “If you’re struggling with your faith.…” “Are you struggling with your faith?” “Yeah, I’m really struggling with my faith.” I would roll my eyes each time. For one thing, why is it … Continue reading What I Used to Believe