Monday, November 30, 2009

#106 Overshare via prayer request

Overshare via prayer request is the nauseating cousin of gossip via prayer request. Some people do not hold back. Since they're in their community of brethren they feel free to get detailed.

"Shannon couldn't make it to small group tonight, she's got diarrhea on top of that chronic yeast infection so keep her in your prayers."

"Aaron had a semen analysis and his sperm count looks fine so we're going to get my lazy ovary scoped before we start the adoption process, could y'all just be praying for that?"

"Susan Walter's uterus unraveled and fell out while she was jogging. Pray that God would give her mercy and speedy recovery from her hysterectomy."
If prayer request overshare does not engage your gag reflex it will at the very least create unfortunate visuals you'll associate with that person for years to come.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

#105 Wondering what atheists do on Thanksgiving

Atheists don't get much clemency from Christian culture. They are generally thought to be misguided and inclined to despair.

While Christians are busy thanking God on Thanksgiving they have been known to wonder aloud how atheists could possibly celebrate this holiday with no one to thank. It may not occur to them that on Thanksgiving Day many atheists are thankful to their friends and families, thankful to people who don't dismiss them, and that many are volunteering in soup kitchens and serving the needy just like Jesus said to do.

This post originally appeared on Beliefnet. The original post and its comment thread can be found here.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

#104 Saying "just" a lot while praying out loud

When called upon to pray aloud in a group, an evangelical automatically says "just" a few dozen times during the course of the prayer. This doesn't happen when other flavors of Christians such as Catholics or Episcopalians pray, but an evangelical cannot help it.
"We just come before you today, Father God, and just ask that you pour out your spirit upon us. Just renew our hearts and help us know your plan. Knock down any barriers in our hearts and just show your will to us and, uh, just help us love you."
This post and the ensuing comment thread originally appeared here on Beliefnet.

Friday, November 20, 2009

#103 Guiltily watching Oprah

Christian women are on the fence about Oprah. Her touting of "The Secret" with its new age agenda rubs them entirely the wrong way. They also don't appreciate her cohabitating with Stedman, her angling towards gay acceptance, suggesting there could be many paths to God, and especially not the part she played in electing Obama.

They worry about her wide influence which is so obviously not Christ-centered, yet even they have to admit her episode about mom jeans did them a world of good.

The conflict sits in the pit of their stomachs every time they see she's having an Oprah's Best Things episode or documenting a road trip with Gayle.

(Same goes double for Ellen.)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

#102 Gossip via prayer request

During a Bible study or fellowship group there comes a time (usually near the end) that you go around the circle and make prayer requests. This is an excellent time to air the dirt on absent friends under the guise of being lovingly concerned about their spiritual state.

The person being skewered is never present when others are confessing their sins for them. The prayer request often includes the phrase "they are just not walking with the Lord right now" and the group nods gravely while imagining which wayward deeds this person has been engaging in.

Other times more detail is given. "I just want to remind you to be in prayer for Heather and Scott. She found out he's been sleeping with her best friend so they need lots of prayer right now. And this has to be especially hard on them considering they just got through that whole lesbian daughter thing a few months ago."

94% of prayer requests concerning single people are for "purity" with their boyfriend or girlfriend. In a titilliating twist, some people personally confess such misdeeds in detail. This information is absorbed readily by all present and filed away in everyone's memories to "struggle with" later.

This post originally appeared on Beliefnet. The original post and its comment thread can be seen here

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Introductory Beliefnet post


I started this blog ( in August 2008. I know this isn't a new concept and I'm not a pioneer in angst about evangelicalism - lots of people have done this before and have done it better than me. But I've been helped a lot by the community surrounding this blog and people coming alongside and saying they have the same questions and problems.

What else should say, hmm. I have little kids. I work full-time. I live in fear of earthquakes. I've never stayed awake all the way through Star Wars. Maybe my husband should tell you about me, it might be more objective. He wrote 25 things about me like those 25 things lists on Facebook. The Star Wars thing is actually #1:

1. She has never seen Star Wars.
2. Whenever Stephanie gets into a car, she starts craving Diet Coke.
3. Has painted and repainted every piece of furniture in our home multiple times.
4. She could lie in bed all day reading, watching tv, and blogging, and never fall asleep.
5. Conversely, she falls asleep during most movies.
6. She reads and recycles 20-30 magazines a month.
7. Her feet look like they've never been walked on.
8. She does, however, have one weird toe from running.
9. Was faulted for causing 9 car accidents during college. Zero since.
10. She played rugby in college, and bit people in the scrum when she had opportunity.
11. Bakes cakes on a whim.
12. Is obsessed with books on cleaning and organization.
13. Likes to dream up new names for kittens.
14. Likes to draw cartoon bunnies and coo at them.
15. Dresses as a southern baptist every Halloween.
16. Will say she is not hungry, and then eat off of your plate.
17. Is always on the hunt for an unmanned piano to play.
18. Hates Uggs and Crocs. Loves cowboy boots.
19. Eats chips and salsa every day.
20. Ran a marathon.
21. Makes a mean chicken fried steak dinner.
22. Has most television commercials from the 1980's memorized.
23. Is a classically trained pianist.
24. Still listens to Amy Grant.
25. Loves reality shows involving haunted houses and ghosthunters

That's more than you wanted to know, so thanks for reading.


Friday, November 13, 2009

News bulletin

Dear darling reader,

Beliefnet asked if they could host this blog and I said sure. So next week it will move over there, but this link will still route to it. So, that's kind of exciting. Yips!


Tuesday, November 3, 2009

#101 Godwitter and ChristianChirp in lieu of Twitter

From these all-Christian platforms people can do what they did on Twitter and Facebook (tweet Bible verses, express dismay over political affronts to morality, and proclaim excitement for date night with their hot wives), but here their audience presents no opposing viewpoints which could rankle them and raise their blood pressure.

Quite how making a lower-quality version and calling it Christian brings glory to God is not clear, but evangelical interpretations of "worldly" things are rampant and time-tested. It isn't biblical, but it's how Christian culture tends to operate.