Reads of the Week
1) Stranger in a Strange Land by Rany Jazayerli
"That's what Ender's Game is all about, really. In order to defeat the buggers, Ender has to figure out their tactics. In order to figure out their tactics, he has to understand them. In order to understand them, he has to stop hating them. Empathy leads the way to victory, but it also leads the way to emotional devastation, because how can you live with yourself if you've defeated an enemy you've grown to love?"
2) The Thing That's Shocked Me Most About Pope Francis (Or Why Protestant Pastors Need To Pay Attention To This Pope) by Zack Hunt
"So pastors, if you’re out there and you’re listening and you really care about reaching the people in your own community, stop listening to the ministry gurus tell you how to grow your church. Stop funneling money into the latest fad program or worship trend. Stop trying to be like the celebrity megachurch pastor you follow online and start trying to be more like Pope Francis."
3) Sermon for All Saints Sunday: Small Acts of Love by Nadia Bolz-Weber
"So what can we do but also give thanks for this table we are about to gather around – a foretaste of the heavenly banquet around which the saints are already gathered. We give thanks that around this table we are tied to the whole communion of saints – united with all who have ever received bread and wine and told it was Jesus and it was for them."
4) Gracious Doubt by Richard Beck
"And so what I wish for, for myself and for all doubting Christians, is that we might come to practice a gracious doubt. A doubt that is generous to others, no matter how they read the bible, or pray, or worship, or seek divine intervention, or handle the problem of pain."
5) Why I Still Don't Believe in the Power of Prayer by Sarah Markley
"The power isn’t in the actual prayer, I wonder, but in what the praying does to a soul. I know there are whole books written about this but when one comes to the epiphany all by oneself, it means so much more than a book could ever communicate."
American Evangelicalism is Defined by Political Tribalism by Fred Clark
On Football, Incognito and What it Means to Be a Man by Benjamin Moberg
Come to the Margins by Rachel Pieh Jones
On Pop Theology Week in Review
On Pop Theology Podcast: Episode 45 - The West Wing Musical Extravaganza by Ben Howard, Sebastian Faust, and Jesse Moon
"This week's episode is dedicated to the greatest political television show in history and, in particular, the greatest fictional president, Jed Bartlet."
An NBA Preview for Theologians: Part 1 - The Eastern Conference by Ben Howard
"With this heinous oversight in mind, I've tasked myself with writing an NBA preview for the theological community."
Song of the Week
"Counting Stars" by OneRepublic
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