• Heartprints

    The Tale of a Traitor

    There are many wonderful heroes and traitorous foes in the pages of the Bible. Both good and bad share in the human frailties that come from being made of dust. Noble heroes of faith surrounded by their unbelieving, accusing and deadly opponents are found in every book. However, tucked in the corner of a bigger story we find some who pose in the OT as worshipers of Jehovah or in the NT as Christ followers. They would fade into the background of the story if not for the amazing crossroads where their half-hearted faith meets their whole-hearted greed or hatred. Judas Iscariot was just such a man. Speaking of Judas,…

  • Engage

    Around the Table: Why Gathering Matters

      Gathering is nothing new. All throughout sacred history, women and men have been gathering around tables to celebrate, reflect, feast, and remember. From Israel’s inception the sacrificial system ushered people into God’s presence and then around a table as they often enjoyed a meal as part of their offerings and festivals. In the book of Ruth, Boaz sat around the table with his workers, inviting an unknown Moabite woman to eat of his bread. In Psalms David celebrated God’s banquet table. And in the New Testament, Jesus gathered around tables with friends and sinners, and then he instituted his memorial supper around over the Passover meal as he and…

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    Are You a Spiritual Hoarder? Three Ways We Withhold Ourselves—and Our Stuff—from Others

    Hoarder: “A word that describes anyone that feels the need to find, collect, keep, [or] pack any and everything because they do not know how to throw things away” (Urban Dictionary). Several years ago there was an entire TV series about hoarders. There are entire companies devoted to helping hoarders clean up. And there are even medical disorders related to hoarding. Innate within each of us—to varying degrees—is a desire to hold on to something. Hoarding is more than just stowing away our stuff in some dark closet. Sometimes it means we keep our deepest selves locked tightly within us. Here are three ways we withhold ourselves from others and…

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    Let God be your mentoring match-maker

    One of the most frequently asked questions I get from women concerns mentoring. Young women crave a more experienced woman to walk with them through life and help them grow up as all-in Christ followers. But when older women set up mentoring "programs" that artificially match women, young women often describe these programs as "scary".  What might work better than a tightly orchestrated mentoring "program"? Instead of leaders trying to micro-manage other people's mentoring relationships, why don't we all try to create a mentoring culture where women connect naturally. Why don't we all learn the ins and outs of mentoring today. What worked in 1990 won't work in 2015. In…

  • Engage

    The Click: Organic Mentoring at Its Best

    Today I'm happy to feature as a guest columnist Sheryl Lackey:  We met—instantly clicked—love at first sight. No, I’m not talking about the brown-haired, blue-eyed, six-foot tall man in my Systematic Theology class. Sure, the words “love” and “clicked” may conjure up thoughts of a romantic connection, but the context can be broader. A click, a natural attraction, a spark based on chemistry and mutuality, can kindle a mentoring friendship. I know because a click launched my relationship with Dallas Theological Seminary professor Dr. Sue Edwards. She calls it the “compulsory click” in her new book Organic Mentoring, and she insists that without that spark mentoring relationships in today’s culture…

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    The Dark Underside of Female Friendships

    Cherry and Beth met in a MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) group at their church, hitting it off immediately. They loved the mutual connection with another mom, understanding the stresses and joys of having small children about the same age. Their weekly playdates became the highlight of each girl’s week. They would chat on the phone every day, comparing notes on what they would be fixing for dinner or what great, repeatable golden nuggets their toddlers spouted. That morphed to texting each other throughout the day, at least once an hour. The intense sense of connection, of feeling heard and understood and valued, grew to be like an emotional drug for…

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    Philippians and the Big Story

    For this post I’m delighted to have as my guest Dr. Lynn H. Cohick, author and Professor of New Testament at Wheaton College and Graduate School. I require Dr. Cohick’s terrific work, Women in the World of the Earliest Christians, for students in my Role of Women in Ministry class at DTS.  Today Zondervan released her latest book, a work on Philippians in The Story of God Bible Commentary series. I'm enthusiastic about this new series because of its emphasis on narrative. Before we talk specifically about your writing on the book of Philippians, what can you tell us about this new The Story of God Bible Commentary? The commentary…

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    Memoir-Life with a New Baby…When You Are Near Death in a Coma

    "After waking from a two-month coma after childbirth I struggled to discover what had happened, love my child, and rediscover who I was. I awoke to a baby I didn’t know and a body I didn’t recognize. I faced a life and self I didn’t know how to put back together. " So begins Lindsey O'Connor's new book, The Long Awakening, a personal memoir of near-death in the midst of giving life.   Ove ten years previous, at an author’s conference in Atlanta, Ga, right in the middle of ONE BIG PAJAMA PARTY,  Lindsey had begun to cramp badly. In a book on the friendships of women I wrote about what…