Sunday Superlatives 6/3/2012


by Rachel Held Evans Read Distraction Free

Around the blogosphere...

Funniest Video:
Existential Housecat Doesn’t Want Your Cheeseburgers

Coolest Photo:
Mental Floss with “Turning Coffee Stains Into Art

Craziest Mishap:
“’Sorry we confused UN logo with Halo video game’ – BBC

Best New (For Me) Blog: 
Honest Toddler

Best Analysis: 
Richard Beck with "Orthodox Alexithymia” 

“When theology and doctrine become separated from emotion we end up with something dysfunctional and even monstrous. A theology or doctrinal system that has become decoupled from emotion is going to look emotionally stunted and even inhuman."

Best Response:
 Micha Boyett (at Her.Meneutics) with “Ann Voskamp, Tim Challies, Beth Moore: Dinner and a Defense of Earnestness

Best Question:
Scot McKnight with “Are churches adjusting to this?

“According to the new data, singles make up 27% of U.S. households; in several large cities, including New York, San Francisco, Atlanta and Washington, D.C., it’s more than 40%.”

Best Writing:
Sarah Bessey with “In Which This is One

“This one moment, after you’ve dropped off the babysitter, when you’re driving home in the dark night, alone, in the quiet, in the gratitude, in the starlight and the streetlight. Your babies are all sleeping in their rooms, the windows are open, your husband is waiting for you at home, he’s made a few promises, and your hair still smells like pool water...”

Best Spoof (nominated by Micah Odor):
Hey Christian Girl

“Hey girl, it makes me feel so good when I think about how equally yoked we are.” 

Most Practical:
Rachel Marie Stone (at Her.Meneutics) with "The Dark Side of Healthy Eating: Diagnosing ‘Orthorexia’ Eating Disorders"

"Ultimately, a rules-based approach to food misses some of the most important things about food: that it is a gift of God to be received with gratitude and pleasure, and that food brings people together." 

Most Informative: 
Love Wins – An Orthodox View

Most Helpful:
Emily Freeman at Chatting at the Sky with “5 Ways to Breathe in a Breathless World

“We need to recognize our own uselessness sometimes. And not just recognize it and know it’s there, but to actually live it. To still the hands and close the eyes and know that really, we have nothing to offer alone. If we are unable to still and to close, sometimes the Lord is gracious to quiet us on his own terms in the form of a useless day. It seems a waste to me, but I believe he loves me enough to spend a whole day reminding me that productivity is not my god.”

Most Moving: 
BuzzFeed with “40 of the Most Powerful Photographs Ever Taken

Most Candid: 
Jenny Lawson (The Bloggess) with “It comes around...and around” 

“At one point the ride we’d been waiting on was closed because a terrible rainstorm broke out so we ran for cover and hid under the monorail for some shelter.  It was fairly miserable and all I could think about it how I wanted to be dry and in bed and how I felt bad for Hailey that she was stuck in a closed park with no access to rides and that’s when I noticed that she was having the most fun she’d had all day just jumping in the enormous puddles and catching rain in her mouth.  Rain that had dripped off the monorail and probably gave her cholera, but still…she was so damn furiously happy.  She took what came at her and made it into joy.”

Most Vulnerable:
Matthew Blake Williams with “Why Gays are Going to Save the Church

“Time and again, I meet lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Christians who are some of the most dedicated, committed believers I know. They love the church. They love Creator. And they believe, emphatically and without reservation, that Creator loves them and has a place for them in the kingdom. The fact is, LGBT Christians often do a better job at living out the way of Jesus than do the Christians who exclude them from their worship services....Really, it would be so much easier to wave a big middle finger at the church and go about our lives. It really would.”

Most Relatable: 
Kathy Escobar with “Ex-Good-Christian-Women

“Over time, we have been sold a bill of goods on what it means to be a Christian woman.  We’ve been domesticated, tamed, caged, and limited.  We haven’t been properly valued or empowered or nurtured.  We have been taught codependence and given the company kool-aid to drink. But it’s changing.  Slowly, surely.”

Most Thoughtful (nominated by Addie Zierman):
Judith Hougen with “The Problem with Light: Reflections on the Life, Death, and Art of Thomas Kinkade

“That’s why in nearly every creative writing class I teach I eventually offer this truism: in this world, every light that shines on something creates a shadow, and you have to write both, own both, or your work will be hollow. Learn to hold life’s tensions.”

Most Heartbreaking:
Donatella Rovera with “Why Syria Feels Abandoned

Wisest
Addie Zierman with “Organic Christianity

“To me, organic faith looks less like a tidy, three-minute testimony and more like seeds strewnacross so much time. It is less about inviting my neighbor to church, more about inviting her over for coffee. It’s not really about sending my kids off to Sunday School class, but rather standing with them in the rain as it falls, telling them, God is here! He’s giving the plants a drink of water. Isn’t that cool?"

If you haven't already, you might want to subscribe to this girl's blog. It's a new favorite! 

Truest:
Jamie Wright (The Very Worst Missionary) with “Love people, not projects

“If there is one thing I’ve learned about loving people in the last five years, it’s that nobody wants to be featured as a prayer point in your newsletter. Nobody wants your unsolicited, but loving Christian counsel. Nobody wants your corny Bible tract. Indeed, nobody wants to be your pet-project for Jesus. People aren’t meant to be projects."

Boldest: 
Amy Young with “In which we have a frank chat about my marital status

“So, returning to the question as to why I am single, there is no simple, easy answer; but I do believe that, in part, it is because I am a woman and a leader and didn’t marry before it became apparent that I was not a behind-the-scenes leader but an up-front, out-loud, follow-me one.”

Realest:
 
Kristen (at We Are THAT Family) with “When Parenting Takes the Breath Out of You

“Hard parenting doesn’t mean bad parenting. If often reflects good parenting.”

Best Analogy: 
Jon Van Sloten at Think Christian with “Spiritual perception and the science of color

“If we really believe in an omnipresent, sovereign, providentially moving, holding-the-universe-together-by-His-Holy-Spirit God, one who wants us to know and experience His presence (to see), then surely we must be missing a lot. In fact, we must be missing most of what’s really going on. Because of sin, we’re a few cones short of full perceptive capacity.”

Best Resource: 
Mike Morrell with “Biblical Proofs for the Feminine Face of God in Scripture

Best Storytelling: 
Brian McLaren at Red Letter Christians with “A Story of Christian-Muslim Friendship: Entering Without Knocking

“A few minutes later, the door opened — no knock: I learned that Armin never knocked. In came a stream of kids, seven, eight, nine, ten, eleven. Each of them took as many balloons as he or she could hold, the little ones two, the bigger ones three or four. A few minutes later, they came back for a second load, and after a few loads, all the balloons were gone. That day earned us a heroic reputation with the neighborhood kids and a slightly less stellar reputation with their parents who had to endure the random sounds of popping balloons for days to come. But it also began a friendship with Armin. I’d have to say that Armin was my first Muslim friend.”

Best Profile
David McCollum at Ethics Daily with “Lottie Moon defied male-dominated Southern Baptists

“She behaved as if she had equality with men and became the most popular and respected missionary among Southern Baptists," Sullivan said. "The irony is that her name has been used to raise money for Southern Baptist mission efforts while the denomination's leaders have maintained a policy of women being subservient to men. … Her life has been interpreted and used for institutional purposes."

On the blog this week...

Most Popular Post: 
"Ask a Feminist...(Response)"

Most Popular Comment: 
In response to “Ask a Feminist,” JD wrote: 

“This post made me realize two things:
1) I'm a feminist
2) That's totally a good thing.
I am applauding you, ma'am, both for having the drive to say what needs to be said and for having the patience to say it to those of us who maybe weren't so sure we wanted to listen.”

On the blog this month...

Five Most Popular Posts:

1. How to Win a Culture War and Lose a Generation

2. Enough: Or, why we should all be laughing hysterically in the magazine aisle

3. “All right, then, I’ll go to hell”

4. From Waging War to Washing Feet: How do we move forward?

5. A Small, Strange Victory for Vaginas Everywhere

And don’t forget that next week begins our Week of Mutuality! Are you going to contribute a post?

 So, did anything catch your eye online this week? What’s happening on your blog?

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