The most-read network posts

December 27, 2015

Here are this year's most popular bloggers and posts from the CCblogs network:

1) What kind of pastor does your church really want? by Emily C. Heath. Everyone says they want a pastor, but not everyone means the same thing.

2) Debating Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University, by Adam J. Copeland. What do I think about FPU? Well, I haven’t taken FPU myself, so I did the next best thing this semester: I required my students to study FPU and debate its merit.

3) It's time to equalize pastor salaries, by David Lewicki. How do you make it in a church where they pay you the judicatory minimum, half of what I make? God forbid you have a health crisis.

4) Failure to adult, by MaryAnn McKibben Dana. Keeping up with the Joneses can take many forms. Some people are lured by the Joneses’ shiny new toys, or the Jones children’s impeccable manners and shelf full of trophies. My trigger is competence.

5) 5 things Christians can learn from vinyl records, by David Henson. Vinyl invites us into ritual—and into a feast for the senses.

6) Preaching and the life of study, by Allan R. Bevere. Fred Craddock's emphasis on study, not as the means to the end of writing a sermon but as a way of life out of which sermons grow, is a lesson I have never forgotten.

7) When terrible theology makes good Christians, by David Williams. For all of my eye-rolling about the absurdity of name-it-and-claim-it hucksterism, much of what Creflo Dollar writes is not so wildly different from the moral advice I would give.

8) Don't shop at the Safeway! by Jamie Calloway-Hanauer. The only way to get to our neighborhood—which is located a little off the beaten path—is through a poor neighborhood. It is, as one person euphemistically put it, a dark neighborhood.

9) Attachment worshiping, by Rebecca Kirkpatrick. We tend to think of the most sacred places in our sanctuaries as behind the pulpit, table, and font or even beneath the cross. But the pew is just as holy.

10) When the message is not enough, by Susan M. Reisert. Sally left our church for a more conservative one. She may not feel the pull to the pulpit, but what if she did—and what about other women?

11) My daughters are not distracting, by Joanna Harader. Who knows why some people find hair-braiding distracting. But the distraction seems to have more to do with the person being distracted.

12) Who's going to teach religion? by James Calvin Schaap. I'll never forget working on some graduate school research paper—probably something about John Milton—and stumbling on history so elementary I was embarrassed I didn't know it.

13) Why I want us to all stop praying for a while, by Crystal St. Marie Lewis. Is it possible that our prayers for God to somehow fix the world seem unheard because we don’t yet see ourselves as the answers to those prayers?

14) If I were Donald Trump's pastor, by John W. Vest. Should a pastor do anything when a high-profile member makes a series of very public statements that run counter to the beliefs or ethos of the church?

15) How to pray lectio divina with kids, by Laura Kelly Fanucci. Here’s the thing about 90 percent of traditional spiritual practices: they require uninterrupted time, uninterrupted space, and peaceful quiet. With three young kids, I have to improvise.