If You Like Reading Me Here, You’ll LOVE Reading Me Over There

alone-yet-not-alone-2013-large-picture-550x300Hello there, loyal readers (all three of you)!

The last time I made one of these announcements, I was pointing you over to that piece I wrote on the Bible for Cracked! A lot has happened since then!

The most exciting bit is that that piece managed to earn me a book deal! I’m currently working with Hollan Publishing on HOLY SH*T! The Dirtiest Bits in the Bible. I’m sort-of getting paid to read the Bible and write dick jokes, which is pretty much my dream job, so I’m basically on cloud nine!

Also exciting, though, is that I’m now a staff writer for the Christ and Pop Culture, which is a blog I’ve admired for a while. You can read my debut for them right now — it’s a piece on the racial tone-deafness of the American Right. Hopefully, it makes some sparks fly.

Majestic Protests from a Magisterial Protestant; or, someone needs to harass Don Miller some more, so it might as well be me

Since I wrote that post about Don Miller and his dislike for church, I’ve received messages from several different people asking me to clarify my positions, give them more thoughts on Miller, and even (awesomely) absolve them for skipping church. (I don’t know what to say to that last one, except I’m not His Holiness the Parson.) Continue reading

Donald Miller Left Me Standing at the Altar, in More Ways Than One

[NOTE: If you’d rather read something less squishy and more concrete, or less Lutheran and more Reformed, my total-BFF-who-I-just-met, Derek Rishmawy, has a great piece over at Christ and Pop Culture.]

In addition to being a blogger, memoirist, and in-demand speaker, Don Miller is known for being hungry like the wolf.

In addition to being a blogger, memoirist, and in-demand speaker, Don Miller is also known for being hungry like the wolf.

Oh, Don Miller. You used to be cool.

I admit it. Like pretty much every Christian my age, I had a torrid love affair with Blue Like Jazz (the book, not the movie, but also kind of the movie). What can I say? Jazz is to us post-evangelicals what Atlas Shrugged is to libertarians, or what The Lord of the Rings is to hippies, or what Martha Stewart Living is to really terrible people.

But now I kind of want to take it all back. Continue reading

What Christians Can Learn from the “Atheist Megachurch”

This is either the Sunday Assembly, or a really hip Eastern Orthodox congregation

This is either the Sunday Assembly, or a really hip Eastern Orthodox congregation

A few weeks ago, news sources were buzzing over the “atheist megachurch,” the Sunday Assembly. Atheists, agnostics, and other assorted nonbelievers can now gather together every Sunday in major cities like London, New York, and Sydney, hear a humanistic and/or scientific message, and sing some songs. It’s the typical Sunday evangelical church experience, wrapped up in a neat little package, and without all that pesky doctrine. Continue reading

Some brief thoughts on the failure of the Tea Party.

Since the economic crisis of 2008, the U.S. has seen the emergence of two populist movements: the Occupy movement, devoted to the dismantling of the global capitalist oligarchy; and the Tea Party movement, devoted to the sending of really angry Republicans to Washington.

I’m not really in a place to judge the former, since their goals are more nebulous and their action more local, but recent events have made it really, really obvious that the Tea Party has failed by any objective measure. Let me give a couple thoughts on why. Continue reading

6 Ridiculous Trademark Lawsuits, for Your Edification

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Spike Lee and your mother both really want you to head over to Cracked.com and read my debut for them: “The 6 Most Ridiculous Things People Claimed to Legally Own” (their title, not mine). So far, I regard writing for Cracked as a generally pleasurable experience; the editors are tough but fair, and they’re serious about maintaining a really high-quality humor site. Hopefully you’ll see some of my stuff there again, and soon.

Hey Guys, I’m a Young Person and I Have Opinions (Rachel Held Evans, Millennials, Etc.)

→ Why are Millennials leaving the Evangelical Church?

Most bloggers can only wish they were this photogenic.

Most bloggers can only wish they were this photogenic.

It’s a question the mainstream press can’t resist because it’s (a) immediate, (b) controversial, and (c) really dumbed-down. In any case, Rachel Held Evans — the de facto voice of post-Evangelicals — has a piece up on CNN about the question as we speak (you’ve probably seen it; at this point every single Facebook friend you have has probably shared it). The basic premise? They’re leaving because Jesus isn’t there.

You can read it if you want; it’s worth the time. Then if you feel like it, you can read this really, really thorough takedown by Alastair Roberts; and I also highly recommend this criticism of its tone from my close, personal friend Jake Meador over at Mere Orthodoxy.

But for me? I just can’t get over the question, let alone the answer. Continue reading

New Videogame Consoles! Because…Why, Again?

Also available in black!

Also available in black!

Like all members of my generation, I have a rather ambiguous relationship with videogames.

I believe in the medium. It’s a fascinating new art form, and certain games have been central to some of my fondest memories.

And yet, every few years, I look around and realize I haven’t really played a videogame in almost forever. And then I try to remind myself why I used to care.

Part of this is just a time issue. A truly great single-player game can take as much as 50 hours to complete, and every time I get through one, I look at my watch and realize that (a) it’s three a.m., and (b) I could have read five books in the same amount of time it took me to finish one game. And when you work full time and have kids, that sort of time is at a premium.

But I think there’s more to it than that. Namely, that the games companies haven’t given us a reason to get excited in a long, long time.

This is particularly striking now, as we’re currently in a moment where all three console manufacturers are making bids to be on top in the next hardware generation, and literally nobody I am aware of is at all excited about any of the three new consoles.  Continue reading