Saturday, August 24, 2013

Dogs Made Out of Old Boots and the Best Things You'll Read All Week

by Ben Howard

Reads of the Week

1) Accountable for Attention? by Lane Severson

"Traditionally we have called them prophets. Their calling is to speak an unpopular truth and to pump our stomachs in event of a Kool-aid overdose. We are confused about them too. Often the most inflammatory religious voices claim to be prophets. But prophets aren’t just baptized attention whores."

2) Going to Weddings Alone by Emily Maynard

"I wish there was an acknowledgement, even in vows and til-death-do-us-parts, of the realities of the world. I wish there was a celebration of deep rooted friendship beyond marriage ceremonies, with just as much wine and dancing afterward."

3) For a Time by Mason Slater

"For a time it can be easy to get wrapped up in movements, and tribes, and trends, and systems, and buzz words, and being-right-no-matter-the-cost, and forget our humanity. Because it’s tempting to pretend that we are somehow not like everyone else, that we are infallible."

4) In Which I Beg Barbie's Pardon by Sarah Bessey

"I began to rethink my distrust. After all, the argument could be made that you are a feminist icon: fifty years of careers ranging from doctor to teacher and all points between. You seem to have a lot of friends and interests – my daughter always has her little gang of Barbies working together to solve problems, you see. You’re a big sister, too, and a good friend."

5) How "The Walking Dead" Solved Videogames' Christ-Figure Problem by Richard Clark

"What results is an arc that drags the player along to a place of Christ-like selflessness. There is very little actual shooting or beating things up, even zombies. The game is about caring for others, about living purposefully, about walking into a situation of danger knowingly and being open to living and dying through the very worst so that someone else might benefit."

6) There Are No Trophies Here by Micha Boyett

"God was the Ultimate Grownup, smiling if I could keep up with my tasks, a sweet teacher who liked me as long as I was nice enough to All the People and concerned with All the Bad Things. And if I could do it, if I could risk enough and try enough and come close enough to God, it would be enough."

7) Christians and the Myth of "Hookup Culture" by Jonathan Merritt

"The depravity of humans makes history look less like a moral ski slope and more like a moral game of whack-a-mole. Injustices and evils exist in every era, and about the time we eliminate a few of them, we’re forced to face a whole new set."

8) A Plea for Listening Well at Christian Colleges by DeLisa Thomas

"There seemed be an overall misperception that we minorities were playing the victim card and that our experiences of racism were somehow our own fault or mere exaggerations. Honestly, this misperception is one that cuts me to the core."

9) Responding to Homophobia in the Christian Community by Rachel Held Evans

"Sensing that the consideration of full personhood might sway the gay marriage debate toward legalization,  he suggests we should deliberately move away from speaking of gay and lesbian people as multi-dimensional human beings and instead reduce them to sex acts in order to make others more repulsed by them. It is an unabashed attempt to single out, stigmatize, and ostracize an entire group of people, which is the exact opposite of what the gospel calls us to do."

10) The Onanism of "Teavangelical" Republicans by Fred Clark

"Onan was dealt a more severe sentence because he was guilty of a more severe crime. Him Whose Sandal Was Pulled Off was guilty of neglecting his duty to provide for a childless widow. Onan was trying to weasel out of that duty while at the same time exploiting the very woman he was duty-bound to help."

Honorable Mention

What I Won't Tell You About My Ballet Dancing Son by Ashleigh Baker

Accidental Activist by Jamie Wright

Loneliness & Tuna Casseroles by Elizabeth Esther

Tweets of the Week

"Listen, Ben Affleck's probably not thrilled with all of your choices either." - Kendall (@notthatkendall)

"I like to keep my Twitter life separate from my facebook experience because ultimately I am gnostic." - Caitlin Kelling (@cait_kellogg)

 "Slowly, Waldo's wife and Mr. Sandiego started putting the pieces together" - Donni Saphire (@donni)

On Pop Theology Week in Review

On Pop Theology Podcast: Episode 36 - Stand-Up Comedy and the Economics of Divinity School w/ John Thornton Jr. by Ben Howard

"This week Ben is joined by his friend, and On Pop Theology contributor, John Thornton Jr. for a conversation about stand-up comedy and the economics of divinity school."

And There Was Rain: The Expectations and Reality of a Wild Goose Chase by Charity Erickson

"Whatever there is to be said about Wild Goose Festival 2013, my strongest impression will remain that I was mildly damp for its entirety."

We Need To Stop Trying by Ben Howard

"I'm currently lying in my bed staring up at the ceiling. The ceiling fan is whirring on high and jostling slightly from side to side."  

Song of the Week

"Worship You" by Vampire Weekend 


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