The Ballad of the Judas TreeBy Ruth Etchells In Hell there grew a Judas Tree Where Judas hanged and died Because he could not bear to see His master crucified Our Lord descended into Hell And found his Judas there Forever hanging on the tree Grown from his own despair So Jesus cut his Judas … Continue reading The Ballad of the Judas Tree – A poem
What if faith is not a commodity we have?
Tears were streaming down our cheeks. Cries of anguish and helplessness could be heard. We had received a message from a good friend of ours that stated, “My husband has been killed!” It was a night we will never forget. Our family began praying and praying and praying!! Through tears, pain in our hearts. we … Continue reading What if faith is not a commodity we have?
Sitting In Spilled Coffee in the Rain
Once a week, the volunteers would take a small group of people with developmental disabilities to the mall. One young man (we will call him Bill) from the group would always purchase the biggest cup of coffee he could find to bring back home with him. During one of the field trips to the mall, … Continue reading Sitting In Spilled Coffee in the Rain
Mr. Mertle and Misunderstanding God
Have you ever thought you knew someone and then spent more time with them and learned something new or different? Or did you realize you didn't know who they really were? Legend had it that Mr. Mertle was the meanest old man that ever lived who owned a man-eating dog, Hercules (The Beast). When Smalls hit his … Continue reading Mr. Mertle and Misunderstanding God
#4: The Prideful Prioritization of Conformity Over Unity
Due to recent events in our country, the pandemic, political elections, and fear, many churches have moved to conformity over unity. Honestly, this is sad and does not look like the Kingdom of God in the world today. People don't want to be taught from a pulpit or lectured. They want to contribute to the discussion. They want to share their struggles, thoughts, and what they are learning. They want to hear other people's stories, struggles, and discoveries. They want to sit around a table, share a meal, and be in authentic, genuine faith communities where they won't be judged or vilified for their questions or beliefs from a different faith background.
#3: High-Performing Christians are Simply Burning Out
This is part 3 of a 5 part series of blogs that are responding to Joe Terrell’s article on Carey Nieuwhof’s website titled: “5 Real Reasons Young People are Deconstructing Their Faith”. You can also see my previous blogs on my website philsteiner.net/blog. Why would a high performing-Christian deconstruct their faith? But read that phrase again: … Continue reading #3: High-Performing Christians are Simply Burning Out
#2: We Live In a More Diverse, Accessible, and Mobile World
We are continuing to look at Joe Terrell's article on Carey Nieuwhof's website titled: "5 Real Reasons Young People are Deconstructing Their Faith". In my last blog post, I discussed the first reason which you can find here. I encourage you to read both as we work through these reasons. Honestly, reason #2 was a … Continue reading #2: We Live In a More Diverse, Accessible, and Mobile World
#1: Trust in Large Institutions (including the Church) is Declining All Across the Board
I recently came across an article by Carey Nieuwhof entitled "Five Real Reasons Young People Are Deconstructing Their Faith." (Written by Joe Terrell)I encourage you to read the article before reading my response. I will be responding to each of the five reasons Nieuwof outlined in 5 separate blog post. I would love for this … Continue reading #1: Trust in Large Institutions (including the Church) is Declining All Across the Board
When injustice wins
The recent tragedies we have been witnessing from Haiti, to Afghanistan, to the rise in COVID (Again), it can feel as though death, disease, disasters and injustice is winning. Honestly it can feel overwhelming and that this world is going to hell. Times like this we don’t have many words to pray. We feel helpless … Continue reading When injustice wins
Half-Truths And Lies We Need To Stop Believing To Defeat Racism.
I genuinely believe that every person, deep down, has a desire for justice. We all want to be treated fairly and justly. We want the things that are wrong in this world to be made right. Our hearts break for how people of color have been treated unjustly in our society for over 400 years. … Continue reading Half-Truths And Lies We Need To Stop Believing To Defeat Racism.