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Jesus meant it when he said “Love your (political) enemies.”

“The whole idea of compassion is based on a keen awareness of the interdependence of all these living beings, which are all part of one another, and all involved in one another.” – Thomas MertonPhoto by Heather Mount on UnsplashPolitics and FriendshipOne of my best friends and I disagree politically, and it makes our friendship stronger.This friend of mine — we’ve […]

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How a Simple Hug Changed My Life

“The best advice I’ve been given when I’d failed – was a hug.”-Bob Goff​I’ve loved giving hugs for as long as I can remember. My pre-school teacher, Mrs. Upton, first emphasized the power of a good hug. One day during circle time, she taught us how to give “bear hugs.” One at a time, we walked […]

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#ConfessYourChurchMess Best of Messy Grace faith Messy Grace Millennials Religious Recovery Spirituality The Struggle With Church

Why I’m Trying Out Church Again for the First Time

“I suppose that since most of our hurts come through relationships, so will our healing, and I know that grace rarely makes sense for those looking in from the outside.”-Wm. Paul YoungDead InsideFor a while now, my Christian friends have laughed (or cringed) at my response to theological talk. I usually say something like, “I […]

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Peace, Be Still: Finding Hope in the Midst of Anxiety

“The wind ran out of breath; the sea became smooth as glass.” -Mark 4:39 This morning, anxiety slapped me in the face before I even opened my eyes. Like a glass of freezing water, it jolted me from restful sleep. What a bully. There are times when I feel such shame because the anxiety persists. Sometimes, I […]

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Jesus was a Zombie? The Death and Resurrection of My Faith

“Until and unless Christ is experienced as a living relationship between people, the Gospel remains largely an abstraction. Until Christ is passed on personally through faithfulness and forgiveness, through concrete bonds of union, I doubt whether he is passed on by words, sermons, institutions, or ideas.”-Richard RohrBRAAAAAAAINSI don’t talk to my kids about the Bible […]

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How to Embrace Your True Self in a World of Fakers

Please call me by my true names,so I can hear all my cries and laughs at once,so I can see that my joy and pain are one.-Thich Nhat Hanh Do you have a nickname? Even if no one has used it in years, did you have a pet name of some kind when you were a […]

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You Can’t Glue Ashes: Notes on the First Year of Grief

“​Blind me to the faults of the other fellow, but reveal to me my own.”-Ben House, Sr.To: Ben, From: BenA few days before Valentine’s day, my first-grader was sitting at the kitchen table filling out twenty superhero cards for his friends. When he filled one out for Ben, I was a little confused. He’d never […]

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Best of Messy Grace catching your breath faith Messy Grace Religious Recovery Spirituality The Struggle With Church

Why No One Really Cares What You Believe

“One of the great tragedies of life is that men seldom bridge the gulf between practice and profession, between doing and saying. A persistent schizophrenia leaves so many of us tragically divided against ourselves. On the one hand, we proudly profess certain sublime and noble principles, but on the other hand, we sadly practise the […]

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What the Hell is a Christian Agnostic?

After reading Catching Your Breath, the one thing everyone seems to want to know is this: what the hell is a Christian Agnostic?

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It’s Hard to Preach Love While Full of Hate

Jonah refused to preach to a group of people he hated. I’ve been there. And I was wrong.