Culture



Bruce Springsteen and the Connective Tissue of “American Skin”

By Matt Conner

Amadou Diallo was nearly, literally, home free.

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An Interview with Russ Ramsey, Part 2: The Confounding Gospel

By Drew Miller

Do you ever find yourself thinking, “I really want to dig into scripture, but I just don’t know where to start”? Did that one poem from Isaiah give you goosebumps, but then when you tried to read more of the whole book, you got lost and unmotivated? If you answered “no,” well then good for you! But if you answered “yes,” you are in good company, and Russ Ramsey might be able to help you.

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C. S. Lewis, Madeleine L’Engle, and the Power of Storytelling

By Warren Cole Smith

It’s often said that politics is downstream from culture. This is not strictly true, since our laws do shape our culture, and our sense of what is right and wrong.

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An Interview with Russ Ramsey, Part 1: The Compelling Thrift of Scripture

By Drew Miller

Do you ever find yourself thinking, “I really want to dig into scripture, but I just don’t know where to start”? Did that one poem from Isaiah give you goosebumps, but then when you tried to read more of the whole book, you got lost and unmotivated? If you answered “no,” well then good for you! But if you answered “yes,” you are in good company, and Russ Ramsey might be able to help you.

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The (G)race of Community

By Jeanine Joyner

Racial diversity is important to me, not only as a member of the body of Christ but also as a mother through adoption, for I have been given the incredible privilege of raising five beautiful children of color.  All of them different. All of them fellow members of the Church. Yet, for my family, finding a church (or even a ministry) that represented us, all of us, has proven to be difficult for too many years. I longed for community as it will be in eternity.

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Event Invitation: The Myth of Scarcity

By Drew Miller

Every November, it seems that the boundary between Thanksgiving and Black Friday becomes thinner and thinner—sales begin sooner and obligatory family meals hasten to their end. Black Friday offers an over-abundance of new products, but this surplus is predicated on our shared assumption of scarcity: limited supply, time, and money.

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A Better Story: An Election-Day Rumination

By Jonathan Rogers

Last week the students in my Writing Close to the Earth online class read George Orwell’s classic essay, “Politics and the English Language.” In it, Orwell makes the case that vague, abstract, usually Latinate language is an important tool in the dishonest politician’s tool-belt.

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The Horrific Denial of Darkness

By Chris Thiessen

WARNING: Spoilers of certain films and stories follow.

So tonight is Halloween, or maybe for some of you, time for a church “Harvest Festival.” It’s essentially the same thing. Your kids will eat a year’s worth of candy in one night (unless, of course, you’re one of those boring parents who hands out apples and juice boxes), and everyone will dress up, just as long as there are no bloody Scream masks or witch costumes. Whatever your tradition is on the night of October 31st, the dark, spooky themes of horror films are inescapable this time of year.

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The Tree of Life and Our Collective Cultural Discomfort with Recognizing “The Glory”

By Mary McCampbell

[Editor’s note: This piece was written by our friend Mary McCampbell, who we are excited to have at Hutchmoot this year. Enjoy, and be sure to check out her session if you plan to attend.]

A few years ago, when preparing notes for a class discussion on Terence Malick’s 2011 film, The Tree of Life, I began to feel very uncomfortable about typing notes and viewing the film simultaneously.

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The Pornography of Death

By Matt McCullough

When I tell people I’ve written a book about death, hands down, the most common response I receive is laughter.

I take no offense, though. It’s not a cruel, mocking sort of laughter. We joke about death by instinct, the way an eight year old laughs when someone passes gas. It’s socially unacceptable, therefore hilarious.

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The Heaviness of Hope in Martin McDonagh

By Janie Townsend

I remember when I had no imagination for how ugly the process of redemption can look. It seems like that change in the landscape of my mind marks the point in life when I could say with certainty that I had grown up. In that moment, whatever or whenever it was, hope suddenly meant something different, something heavy and precious. It wasn’t pretty—not in the traditional sense of the word anyway. Learning to carry it hurt me, and I had to get used to the weight of something so worth holding, so demanding of a firm grip.

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Wrestling the Giant: Why I Deleted Instagram

By Andrew Peterson

I deleted Instagram from my phone earlier this summer. A few months before that I did the same with the Facebook app. Our family went on a pretty big adventure for a few weeks, and more than once my instinct was to share a photo of it on social media, but when I realized the app wasn’t on my phone I felt a flash of frustration followed by a sigh of relief—then I moved on, happy to be fully present where I was, when I was, how I was with those I love most.

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