personal

Trapped in a Public Prayer

[caption id="attachment_277" align="alignright" width="240" caption="Photo by diamondmountain"]Photo by diamondmountain[/caption] We had another round of layoffs at my small Christian workplace this past week. Everyone was gobsmacked, feeling the sadness and stress of more jobs being vacated and our friends having to leave so suddenly. Even though I'm an outspoken atheist, I like the people I work for and do well at my job. I don't want to stay forever, but I'm so happy to still have a place here--no matter how much I disagree with the central mission of the company. It's my job and I appreciate it. After every instance of mass layoffs the entire company meets for a word from the CEO and a time of extended prayer. I usually try to make a discreet exit to the loo in order to avoid uncomfortable--even hypocritical--situations. I certainly don't want to pray, and I even moreso don't want to be a liar or a fake any more than I already may be as a closeted unbeliever. This time I couldn't avoid it. I was stuck. (more…)

Jesus

Revisiting old beliefs

[caption id="attachment_217" align="alignright" width="160" caption="Photo by shaycam"]Photo by shaycam[/caption] I've been moving house for the past few weeks, and part of that enormously intensive project is dealing with my collection of books. As many of you must also feel, I am emotionally connected to my books because I have memories, experiences, and much of my past life wrapped up in their pages. One of these volumes from my past is the only devotional I truly enjoyed as a Christian: My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers (1874-1917). I wasn't one for fill-in-the-blank Bible studies with banal questions and cookie-cutter insights. Chambers seemed challenging to me at the time because he wasn't part of the current generation; his thoughts (though nebulous at times and without organization) weren't bogged down by current culture and the trends of the most modern Christian movements. So, in a nostalgic tribute to this former chaplain and my former life, I'd like to quote two passages I used to agree with and now critique. (more…)

Christianity

Baptism Removal

Last month, a man named John Hunt won his battle to have his record of baptism removed from the church history. This raised some questions, and I hope you’ll tell me what you think. First, some history. I was baptized into the Roman Catholic Church as an infant. My mother Read more…

personal

Stone Me

If I was living under Mosaic law today, here are the offenses for which I would be put to death: Cursing Parents For every one that curseth his father or his mother shall be surely put to death: he hath cursed his father or his mother; his blood shall be Read more…