165 – Seminary Dropout LIVE! Andrea Lucado, Author of ‘English Lessons’ Talks about Doubt and Being Her Own Person

*Originally Posted at MissioAlliance.org

Our sponsor: Compassion International


If you like Seminary Dropout, be sure to check out OnRamp.


This Week on Seminary Dropout…


Andrea Lucado is a freelance writer based in Austin, Texas. The daughter of the best selling author and pastor, Max Lucado. She inherited an obsession with words and their arrangement. She has a masters in English Literature from Oxford Brooks University and contributes regularly to online and print publications such as Relevant Magazine, and SheReadsTruth.com. When she’s not conducting interviews and writing stories, you’ll find her laughing with friends at a coffee shop or running in the Texas hill country.


It wasn’t long after arriving in Oxford for graduate school that twenty-two-year-old Andrea Lucado – preacher’s daughter from Texas – faced not only culture shock, a severe lack of coffee, but also some unexpected hard questions: Who am I? Who is God? Why do I believe what I believe?
 
“So many nights in Oxford, I felt like the details of my faiths were getting fuzzier. Nights turned restless with the questions and the thoughts. I questioned God’s existence and the doubt, it was getting into my bones….”
 
In this engaging memoir, Andrea speaks to all of us who wrestle with faith, doubt, and spiritual identity. Join Andrea as she navigates the Thames River, the Oxford Atheist Society, romance in ancient pubs—and a new perspective on who God is. As Andrea learned, sometimes it takes letting go of old ideas to discover lasting truth. – From the Publisher


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159 – Efrem Smith, Author of “Killing Us Softly: Reborn in the Upside-Down Image of God”

*Originally Posted at MissioAlliance.org

Our sponsor: Compassion International


Check out the new(ish) podcast OnRamp


This Week on Seminary Dropout…

Efrem Smith’s personal and professional story paints a compelling picture of an urban church leader of deep faith who has managed leaders and budgets, transforming people and ministry wherever he has served. His track record in leading Christian Community Development efforts, serving as a Pastor, Church Planter and leader of the Pacific Southwest Conference of the Evangelical Covenant Church, have prepared him for this moment. Throughout his career, Efrem has had a passion for the urban poor, theological education, and training indigenous leaders for service in the Kingdom.

As a preacher, motivational speaker, and author, Efrem Smith is internationally recognized for his passion to see lasting life transformations, communities revitalized to reach the marginalized, and further Kingdom advancement within our churches.

Serving as founding pastor of The Sanctuary Covenant Church, a multi-ethnic church in Minneapolis, MN, Efrem also co-founded and was President for The Sanctuary Community Development Corporation.  In his previous role, Efrem was the Superintendent of the Pacific Southwest Conference of the Evangelical Covenant Church, providing leadership to 160 churches within California, Arizona, Nevada, Hawaii, and Utah.

As an itinerant speaker and preacher with Kingdom Building Ministries and the Evangelical Covenant Church, he has been a keynote speaker for such events as Athletes in Action, Campus Crusade for Christ, Youth Specialties, Compassion International, Thrive and CHIC. He is the author of Raising Up Young other Heroes, The Hip Hop Church, and Jump. Efrem’s latest book, The Post-Black and Post-White Church, was released in August of 2012.

Efrem is a graduate of Saint John’s University and Luther Theological Seminary.  He is currently seeking his doctorate in Church Leadership from Bethel Seminary in Minneapolis, MN.  He and his wife Donecia, along with their two children, Jeada and Mireya, live in the San Francisco Bay Area. Efrem has received many awards such as the Role Model Award from the Hennepin County Community Coalition and the Community Service Award from Saint John’s University.

The Christian life is actually a kind of death. We die to ourselves, take up our cross, and follow Jesus. Dying in Christ, however, is an opportunity—to experience the comforting presence of the Holy Spirit as we spread the Good News of a God who loves us enough to save us and remake us in his image.

Efrem Smith helps us see that Christian discipleship is a counterintuitive life. In a world turned upside down by sin, God carefully and lovingly strips us of worldly values and turns us right-side up as good citizens and ambassadors of his Kingdom. -From the Publisher


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157- Tish Harrison Warren & Jonathan Warren: A Biblical, Historical, and Pastoral Defense of Women in Ministry

*Originally Posted at MissioAlliance.org

Our sponsor: Compassion International


Check out the new(ish) podcast OnRamp



Tish Harrison Warren & Jonathan Warren talking about women in ministry and ordination.

William Witt’s articles on women and holy orders: http://willgwitt.org/category/theology/womens-ordination

William Webb, Slaves, Women, and Homosexuals
John Stackhouse, Finally Feminist
Ben Witherington, Women in the Earliest Christian Churches
Kevin Madigan, Ordained Women in the Early Church
Gary Macy’s Hidden History of Women’s Ordination
Gordon Hugenberger’s ‘Women in Church Office’ essay.

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Seminary Dropout 99: Jackie Roese on Reshaping Our View of Women in the Church

Seminary Dropout 89: Carolyn Custis James, Author of Malestrom: Manhood Swept Into the Currents of a Changing World


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Top 5 Books of 2016

I think this may be the first year that my “top list” only includes books actually published this year. Also, it’s important to note that, yes, all of these books were written by Seminary Dropout guests, which may seem self serving, but honestly just reading the books of SD guests (which I must do to conduct the best interviews possible), leaves me little additional time for reading anything else.

5. Silence and Beauty by Makoto Fujimura

Shusaku Endo’s novel Silence, first published in 1966, endures as one of the greatest works of twentieth-century Japanese literature. Its narrative of the persecution of Christians in seventeenth-century Japan raises uncomfortable questions about God and the ambiguity of faith in the midst of suffering and hostility. Endo’s Silence took internationally renowned visual artist Makoto Fujimura on a pilgrimage of grappling with the nature of art, the significance of pain and his own cultural heritage. His artistic faith journey overlaps with Endo’s as he uncovers deep layers of meaning in Japanese history and literature, expressed in art both past and present. He finds connections to how faith is lived in contemporary contexts of trauma and glimpses of how the gospel is conveyed in Christ-hidden cultures. In this world of pain and suffering, God often seems silent. Fujimura’s reflections show that light is yet present in darkness, and that silence speaks with hidden beauty and truth. -From the Publisher

4. Lord Willing by Jessica Kelley

 

Does God’s perfect plan really include this?

When her young son was diagnosed with brain cancer, Jessica Kelley couldn’t stomach Christian clichés. God’s will? Divine design? The Lord’s perfect plan? In Lord Willing?, Kelley boldly tackles one of the most difficult questions of the Christian life: if God is all-powerful and all-loving, why do we suffer? For Kelley, this question takes an even more painful and personal turn: did God lack the power or the desire to spare her four-year-old son?

For those dissatisfied with easy answers to why evil and tragedy occur, Lord Willing? offers a refreshing, hopeful journey straight to the heart of God. Be prepared for something more beautiful, more pure, and more healing than you can dare to imagine. -From the Publisher

3. Water to Wine by Brian Zahnd

 

Why would the pastor of a large and successful church risk everything in a quest to find a richer, deeper, fuller Christianity? In Water To Wine Brian Zahnd tells his story of disenchantment with pop Christianity and his search for a more substantive faith.

“I was halfway to ninety—midway through life—and I had reached a full-blown crisis. Call it garden variety mid-life crisis if you want, but it was something more. You might say it was a theological crisis, though that makes it sound too cerebral. The unease I felt came from a deeper place than a mental file labeled “theology.” I was wrestling with the uneasy feeling that the faith I had built my life around was somehow deficient. Not wrong, but lacking. It seemed watery, weak. In my most honest moments I couldn’t help but notice that the faith I knew seemed to lack the kind of robust authenticity that made Jesus so fascinating. And I had always been utterly fascinated by Jesus. What I knew was that the Jesus I believed in warranted a better Christianity than what I was familiar with. I was in Cana and the wine had run out. I needed Jesus to perform a miracle.” –Water To Wine

 

2. Finding God in the Waves by Mike McHargue

What do you do when God dies? It’s a question facing millions today, as science reveals a Universe that’s self-creating, as American culture departs from Christian social norms, and the idea of God begins to seem implausible at best and barbaric at worst.

Mike McHargue understands the pain of unraveling belief. In Finding God in the Waves, Mike tells the story of how his Evangelical faith dissolved into atheism as he studied the Bible, a crisis that threatened his identity, his friendships, and even his marriage. Years later, Mike was standing on the shores of the Pacific Ocean when a bewildering, seemingly mystical moment motivated him to take another look. But this time, it wasn’t theology or scripture that led him back to God—it was science.

In Finding God in the Waves, “Science Mike” draws on his personal experience to tell the unlikely story of how science led him back to faith. Among other revelations, we learn what brain scans reveal about what happens when we pray; how fundamentalism affects the psyche; and how God is revealed not only in scripture, but in the night sky, in subatomic particles, and in us.

For the faithful and skeptic alike, Finding God in the Waves is a winsome, lucid, page-turning read about belonging, life’s biggest questions, and the hope of knowing God in an age of science.

                                                                                                     -From The Publisher

1. Trouble I’ve Seen by Drew Hart

What if racial reconciliation doesn’t look like what you expected? The high-profile killings of young black men and women by white police officers, and the protests and violence that ensued, have convinced many white Christians to reexamine their intuitions when it comes to race and justice.

In this provocative book, theologian and blogger Drew G. I. Hart places police brutality, mass incarceration, antiblack stereotypes, poverty, and everyday acts of racism within the larger framework of white supremacy. Leading readers toward Jesus, Hart offers concrete practices for churches that seek solidarity with the oppressed and are committed to racial justice.

What if all Christians listened to the stories of those on the racialized margins? How might the church be changed by the trouble we ve seen?

Key Features:
-Written by well-known theologian and blogger Drew Hart with foreword by Christena Cleveland
-Hard-hitting analysis of racial injustice in the twenty-first century
-Provides a call to action for Christians committed to racial justice and creative proposals for antiracist practices for churches
                                                           -From the Publisher

153: David Fitch Author of ‘Faithful Presence: Seven Disciplines that Shape the Church for Mission’

*Originally Posted at MissioAlliance.orgdf

David E. Fitch (PhD, Northwestern University) is the B. R. Lindner Chair of Evangelical Theology at Northern Seminary. He is also the founding pastor of Life on the Vine Christian Community, a missional church in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. He is the author of The Great Giveaway and The End of Evangelicalism? and is the coauthor of Prodigal Christianity. Fitch coaches a network of church plants in the Christian and Missionary Alliance and he writes, speaks, and lectures on issues the local church must face in mission including cultural engagement, leadership and theology. He has also written numerous articles in periodicals such as Christianity Today, The Other Journal, Missiology as well as various academic journals.

To enter to win a copy of Faithful Presense sign up for my email list at ShaneBlackshear.com (right hand side).

 


 

Thank you all for a great 2016! This is the last episode of Seminary Dropout for the year. Stay tuned to hear more about the “secret project” coming in December.


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135: Suzanne Burden, Author of “Reclaiming Eve: The Identity and Calling of Women in the Kingdom of God”

*Originally Posted at MissioAlliance.org

sbSuzanne is a graduate of Cornerstone University and Grace Theological Seminary and serves part-time as discipleship pastor at Three Rivers Wesleyan Church. She writes and speaks on living in the Kingdom of God as a joyful, right-now reality. Suzanne co-authored “Reclaiming Eve: The Identity and Calling of Women in the Kingdom of God”.

Inferior. Second-best. Marginalized. Every daughter of Eve faces an identity crisis at some time in her life. And many wonder where they fit in on a regular basis. Authors Suzanne Burden, Carla Sunberg and Jamie Wright set out to discover what the Bible says about every woman’s identity. What they uncovered is a scriptural blueprint for both women and men that sets them free to serve Christ together as full partners in building God’s kingdom. -From the Publisher

Find Suzanne at: suzanneburden.com


Our Sponsor:

sk

Intervarsity Press has an exclusive for Seminary Dropout listeners. Go to ivpress.com/dropout to get 20% off Slow Kingdom!


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Seminary Dropout 117: Drew Hart, Author of “Trouble I’ve Seen: Changing the Way the Church Views Racism”

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Drew G.I. Hart is a blogger, theologian, and activist. His blog is hosted by Christian Century, and he speaks regularly at churches, universities, and seminaries.

Trouble I’ve Seen: Changing the Way the Church Views Racism

What if racial reconciliation doesn’t look like what you expected? The high-profile killings of young black men and women by white police officers, and the protests and violence that ensued, have convinced many white Christians to reexamine their intuitions when it comes to race and justice.

In this provocative book, theologian and blogger Drew G. I. Hart places police brutality, mass incarceration, antiblack stereotypes, poverty, and everyday acts of racism within the larger framework of white supremacy. Leading readers toward Jesus, Hart offers concrete practices for churches that seek solidarity with the oppressed and are committed to racial justice.

What if all Christians listened to the stories of those on the racialized margins? How might the church be changed by the trouble we ve seen?

Key Features:
-Written by well-known theologian and blogger Drew Hart with foreword by Christena Cleveland
-Hard-hitting analysis of racial injustice in the twenty-first century
-Provides a call to action for Christians committed to racial justice and creative proposals for antiracist practices for churches
                                                           -From the Publisher


Huge Announcement!!!
Starting next week Seminary Dropout will be hosted at MissioAlliance.org! Hopefully you’re familiar with Missio Alliance but if not please give them a visit and see what they’re about. If you like Seminary Dropout then I think you’ll really like what MA has to offer. I felt this was the perfect next step in the growth of Seminary Dropout. Don’t worry, the contents of Seminary Dropout won’t be affected by our new host. If you regularly listen through an app then nothing changes for you.


Interested in advertising on Seminary Dropout? For rates and information contact me at shane@shaneblackshear.com


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*links to guest books or other products are affiliate links

It’s Not Politics, It’s Jesus

I posted this on my personal facebook profile this morning and was surprised how many people connected with it so I thought I’d share it here.

I think some people believe that when I talk about racism, injustice, and the poor, that I’ve drank some liberal kool-aid. I assure you I’m not interested in progressive politics nor do I think hope is found there. Following the popcorn trail of Jesus is the only reason I’ve arrived at any convictions about those issues. It’s not a wandering from Jesus, it’s trying to take him seriously and believing that he meant the things he said. So if someone anti fungal disagrees then they should argue as a conservative or an American but if your arguing as a Christian, make sure you have a leg to stand on first. I’m certainly fallible and not above correction but in the past when I’m rebuked for speaking up it’s often with vague Republican talking points and long held American assumptions that don’t have much to do with Jesus, but are presented as somehow “Christian”.

Also, I assure you that when I speak on other subjects many believe I’ve drank the conservative kool-aid and the same thing happens from the other side. Jesus doesn’t fit inside our party lines.

Seminary Dropout 83: Rachel Held Evans

Rachel Held Evans

Rachel Held Evans is a tremendously successful blogger and author. Many believers have found a refuge in her writings. You can follow her on her blog at rachelheldevans.com and on twitter at @rachelheldevans.

affiliate link

Rachel’s new book is Searching for Sunday. SfS is about Rachel’s own journey from a simple faith too one with more complexity and subtleties. Many believers, especially of the younger generations will see much of their own story in her’s. Leaving the church, starting a new one, facing failure, and finding a different form of church, Rachel brings us along for the ride.

Some things discussed on the show…

…when going through major doubt and Christians blame you for your doubt,  ‘they aren’t rejecting you for being different, they’re rejecting you for being familiar’.

…when your own theological house falls down sometimes you start throwing rocks at other people houses.

…Rachel’s propensity to talk about very serious and borderline depressing subjects at social functions.

…Rachel could sell more if you just ‘crapped’ on the church and didn’t make an effort to highlight the positive things that happen with churches.

…many boiled down Rachel’s journey as going from evangelicalism to the mainline and that’s really oversimplified and half-true.

…my families own journey without a church last year.


Sponsorship
If you’re interested in advertising your non-profit, conference, or other endeavor send me an email at shane[at]shaneblackshear.com


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