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Posts Tagged ‘grace’

Black Mirror and My Superego Nightmare

By Brad FruhauffMarch 26, 2018

I watched Black Mirror’s “Crocodile” episode feeling as if writer/creator Charlie Brooker had gotten into my head and seen my nightmares. (Spoiler Alert: This post reveals key plot points to Black Mirror’s “Crocodile.”) It begins when Mia’s boyfriend Rob accidentally kills a cyclist with his car. They’re terrified, scared. They don’t know what to do;…

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Suffering and Ash Wednesday

By Elizabeth DuffyFebruary 14, 2018

Suffering is the most dissociative word in the Christian lexicon. Raised Catholic, I was taught to “offer up” my suffering for the salvation of a soul in purgatory. The sooner I embraced my suffering, which meant releasing or suppressing it, the sooner suffering would turn to joy. Joy was the preferred endgame, and it was…

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The Jealous Prayer

By Bryan BlissDecember 28, 2017

In the first days of my MFA program, one of the mentors—a fiction writer I hadn’t studied with yet—said she’d taken to sending letters to other writers when she found herself feeling jealous of their success. This struck me as worthwhile, both in terms of maintaining literary friendships and, you know, being a decent human…

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The Christmas I Sat Next to a Sex Offender

By Jessica Eddings-RoeserDecember 25, 2017

Last year my husband and I celebrated our first Christmas with our infant daughter. She couldn’t understand the holiday, of course, but that didn’t stop us from discussing Advent calendars, wreaths, and Jesse Trees in depth, continuing a friendly argument about Santa Claus that has been going on since our engagement. Citing our childhood experiences…

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How To Negate Hate

By Vic SizemoreOctober 19, 2017

Recently I gave a talk to the freshman at a local college on the theme of negating hate. Their common reading this year was All Quiet on the Western Front, Erich Maria Remarque’s novel set in World War I. The protagonist is a young soldier named Paul Baumer. A German. Our enemy in that war.…

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Famous Last Words

By A.G. HarmonOctober 10, 2017

Towards the end of his life, Winston Churchill famously quipped: “I am ready to meet my Maker. Whether my Maker is prepared for the great ordeal of meeting me is another matter.” As is always the case with humor, a world of seriousness is implied. For one thing, the statement rests upon an understanding of…

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Poetry Friday: “Rain”

By Tara BrayMay 12, 2017

The emotional landscape of motherhood can often be hard to describe and is underrepresented in genres such as poetry. As a poet and mother of a two-year old with a new baby on the way, I appreciated “Rain” by Tara Bray and found it very instructive on several levels. In this candid poem, a “family…

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Poetry Friday: “Gravity and Grace”

By Betsy ShollJanuary 27, 2017

There was a time, early in my process of conversion to Christianity, when I took Simone Weil as my spiritual guide. And a tough one she was—exactly in the ways that Betsy Sholl elaborates in this poem. The epigraph that Sholl chooses is one of Weil’s many expressions of how the self gets in our…

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To Run and Not Grow Weary, Part 2

By Jeffrey OverstreetJanuary 26, 2017

Maybe it was instinct that sent me back to relive the 1924 Olympic Games. Yesterday you found me despairing, feeling a sudden collapse of my lifelong will to write. Slumped on the couch, I was watching, of all things, Chariots of Fire. As a child, I loved this movie. But it wasn’t until college that…

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The Cult of Emotion

By Tania RunyanJuly 13, 2016

As a newish, struggling Christian recovering from two years in a fundamentalist youth group, I committed to starting afresh in college. I was going to get fellowship right this time. My high school church had been all about the rules: No secular music (unless oldies from the 1950s). No shorts with hems higher than the…

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