Okay people. So really it’s been a lazy writing month. We added a new family member, and I’m adjusting to my role as mom to a 17-year-old girl. In case you don’t have non-driving teenagers, this basically means I’m now a full-time chauffeur. School drop-off, school pick-up, friend pick-up, mall drop-off. We’re rolling, y’all.
In any case, our new daughter, G., was in summer school yesterday, and KDO started back for Ellie (praise baby Jesus!), so I had some time to sit in the quiet and read. Amazing. Anyway, I finally took the time to switch from Google Reader to Feedly and catch up on all the blogs I love.
Thus, for your reading pleasure, here are several highlights from the past few weeks, and I’m not even through April’s favorites yet! So go get a cup of coffee or a glass of wine, and enjoy some excellent writing.
The debate on “purity culture” has been a frequent visitor to the blogosphere lately. Here’s a simple but effective post that expresses many of the feelings I want to teach my own daughters.
raising sons and daughters to subvert purity culture: 7 things from Suzannah Paul, the Smitten Word
Each of us derives our inherent, unshakable worth from being created in the image of God. Human worth cannot be measured by appearance, achievement, or “sexual purity” (a dubious and harmful construct). Every person is loved and valued. Full stop.
For the women who teach, lead, and advocate for change….the brave Deborahs. There is room for you.
In Which Jezebel Gives Way to Deborah from Sarah Bessey
This is the thing I believe about the Kingdom of God: it’s for all of us. It’s for the powerful and weak, it’s for men and for women, it’s for the outliers and the insiders. It’s for all of us. And so there is no neat and safe and tidy box: instead there is the wild and untamed and glorious riches of Christ Jesus, there is Deborah and David, there is Junia and Paul, there is Martha and Lazarus, Esther and Sarah, and there is you and there is me. In Christ, oh, hallelujah, there is room for us all. Don’t let anyone scare you from the battle, Deborah. God has called you, Esther, for such a time as this.
As mom to a multiracial family, I loved this. Race shouldn’t be ignored, but appreciated. Kids see differences. It’s our job as parents to teach them to embrace what they see.
The Myth of the Colorblind Kid from Live 58 (via Kristen Howerton at Rage Against the Minivan)
The findings were scary: race is one of the biggest factors in children being left out by their peers. It’s as impactful as gender, physical differences, and even cognitive ability.
A disturbing piece on how Christians focusing on “submission” in the DRC actually contribute to the country’s rape culture.
The Cost of Perverted Preaching from Lynn Hybels
In the DRC, as in many countries, churches have often reinforced this perspective by preaching a perverted message of female submission. Women are to submit, period. No one mentions that men are called to love their wives as Christ loved the church—even to the point of giving his life for his beloved. No one mentions the concept of mutual submission.
As always, Jamie has a perfect response for the haters.
What Would Jesus….Blog? from Jamie, the Very Worst Missionary
I view everything through the filter of my Faith. I see the whole world and everything in it through the lens of Christianity. I am, lest there be a doubter among you, a Christian. As a follower of Christ, and as a believer in a triune God, I simply find Jesus present. And that’s a gift because His presence makes me unafraid to engage the world, unafraid to ask questions, unafraid to answer them, unafraid to pass the wine and break bread with the those who some would slander and burn. Unafraid because “in him we live and move andhave our being”. (⬅ See what I did there?)
The beautiful post that drew the haters mentioned above.
The Middle from Jenna Kemp (on Jamie, the Very Worst Missionary)
The reason I struggle with this firmness of categories is because the beauty of life is in the middle places and in the tension between our categories. Beauty, true beauty, God’s beauty, is in the middle, betwixt, between, underneath, and outside of the boxes we create.
Wonderful advice for those who want to help care for orphans but aren’t in a position to adopt.
what you can do, from Rage Against the Minivan
There are two sides to the orphan crisis: finding families for children without, and preserving families that are intact. Prevention is the side that is not addressed by adoption. If we profess to care about orphans, then we must care about the circumstances that lead children to be orphaned. If we care about adoption, then we must care about seeing less children enter orphanages to begin with.
This article describes the plight of thousands of children who exit the foster care system. It hits especially close to home as parts are representative of struggles faced by my own kids.
Former Foster Kids Struggle With Homlessness from Children’s Rights
Throughout the country, thousands of young people like Tevin struggle with homelessness after they age out of foster care. The scope of the problem is huge. Roughly 26,000 young people age out of U.S. foster care each year. And as many as 31 percent of former foster youth spend time homeless or couch surfing, according to a 2011 study conducted by Chapin Hall Center for Children at the University of Chicago.
Charlie and I experienced an adoption loss last year. While it was nothing like the grief of foster parents losing a child they’ve parented for years, it was a loss. This post provides excellent advice for how to love friends experiencing similar losses.
Supporting Someone Through Adoption Loss from Adoption Magazine
These losses are profound and like a death, yet there is very little acknowledgement of the loss or opportunity for closure which can make it even more difficult….
For family and friends of a family experiencing adoption loss, it can be difficult to know what to say or do and can even be difficult to understand the extent of the grieving.
Evangelicals have a new argument, but this one doesn’t really work either.
What today’s evangelicals are really telling gay people from John Shore
The “sinful temptation” that Christians are forever urging LGBT people to resist is love.
Now isn’t that funny, given that love is the one thing that Jesus was most clear about wanting his followers to extend to others? It’s just so funny it makes you want to laugh till you cry.
Blogger Emily had some strange (and rather insulting) ideas about what her son might learn about gender roles in school. Amy, from Unchained Faith, set her straight.
What our boys learn from Unchained Faith
Anyway, Emily is wrong about this one too–is she not aware that kids are still being bullied for their sexuality? Even if schools are teaching an inclusive sex education (which they’re not in most places), the horror of having your kid know gay people exist is a lot less scary than being the gay kid who gets threatened or beaten. Priorities, people. Sort them.