Respect or Contempt

By Rob Renfroe –  Soon we will know which plan or plans the United Methodist Council of Bishops will recommend to the extraordinary General Conference in St. Louis. In just a matter of months we will learn how the Council proposes to resolve our denomination’s emotional and destructive division over sexual ethics. For over four […]

Suffering for the Sake of Christ

By Courtney Lott – Hannah Cho grew up in North Korea, a country where Christians suffer the widest extent of persecution in the world. Along with her husband, Cho was mercilessly tortured for her faith in internment camps. “My mother only taught me one prayer,” she says. “But I still pray it every day for […]

Liberty’s Hero

By Steve Beard –  Frederick Douglass grew up under the perverse shackles of slavery on a plantation in Maryland 200 years ago. He never knew the identity of his father, barely saw his mother, and witnessed unspeakable violence and bloodshed before he turned 10 years old. He was proselytized under a warped version of Christianity […]

The Future to the Present

By Stephen A. Seamands – “Easter was when Hope in person surprised the whole world by coming forward from the future into the present.” — N.T. Wright It makes all the difference in the world whether someone is dead or alive. That’s why, according to New Testament scholar, Luke Timothy Johnson, the most important question […]

Exploring Possible Futures

By Heather Hahn – The Commission on a Way Forward is fleshing out the details of three possible models for how the denomination treats LGBTQ inclusion. The multinational group, appointed by United Methodist bishops, held its seventh meeting behind closed doors January 18-20 in Dallas. Each model has its supporters among the 32 commission members […]

Expecting More of God

By David F. Watson –  “Okay,” I thought. “I can do this.” A crying woman and her young son stood in front of me. With my limited Spanish, I could make out that she had pain in her head, neck, and chest. He had a problem with his throat. They had come for healing during […]

“Turnaround” Story for Small Churches

By Kathy L. Gilbert – The tale begins with suicide, mixes in a few miracles, but has no ending because one woman and two small United Methodist churches believe faith can’t be measured by the number of people planted in the pews. Can You Just Get Them Through Until Christmas? is lovingly written by Margie […]

Little Lower than the Angels

By Courtney Lott- When David Watson looks at his 11-year-old son, he sees someone created a little lower than God – a treasured fellow human bearing the divine image. When the rest of the world looks at his son, we might mistakenly only see a young man with Down syndrome. If private thoughts were made […]

Rockin’ to the Light

By Steve Beard- It was a surreal scene for a teenage girl to be cruising down the highway in 1956 wedged in the front seat of a Pontiac Star Chief between her father and Elvis Presley. But that was the dizzying case for 18-year-old Wanda Jackson right at the time when rock and roll was […]

Creative Passion

By Courtney Lott- “God created human beings; he created them godlike, reflecting God’s nature. He created them male and female. God blessed them: ‘Prosper! Reproduce! Fill Earth! Take charge! Be responsible for fish in the sea and birds in the air, for every living thing that moves on the face of Earth.’” – Genesis 1:26-28 […]