Sunday Superlatives 8/14/11


by Rachel Held Evans Read Distraction Free

Around the Blogosphere…

Best Video:
Ellen DeGeneres & Gladys – “I Love Jesus But I Drink A Little

Best Photo Series: 
James Mollison with “Where Children Sleep

Best Writing: 
Emerging Mummy with “In Which I Write A Bit About My Prairie-Granny

“You'll need all of your senses for this.  For the crab apples so tart that they squeak against your teeth when you bite their tight cheeks but you eat them until the roof of your mouth is ragged with sour. For washing carrots of black dirt with ice cold water from the hose. The seam of a pea pod, bursting open and the slide of your tongue popping bright green peas, like pearls off a string, into your mouth…”

Best Illustration (nominated by Aric Clark): 
Mary Charlotte Elia at Two Friars and a Fool with “Tsunami Stones

“What so puzzled me while reading about the tsunami stones were the commentators who voiced their complete astonishment that any of the instructions on these markers could have proven useful.  The stones were characterized as novelties carved by men who had been unable to defeat the swell of the sea through the technological achievements of higher sea walls, advanced warning systems, and steel reinforced structures. They were remnants from a more primitive age. The stones were interesting historically and aesthetically, (Who wouldn’t stop to have her picture taken next to one?), but the stones no longer informed a modern, sophisticated society which had overcome such ancient fears with the progress of time. It’s no wonder then that people were shocked when these monuments turned out not to be the markers of an era long dead but living stones voicing a warning that saved a village.”

 Most Applicable: 
Ray Hollenbach with “Ministry and Grief

Most Insightful: 
Peter Rollins with “How To Cut Up the Bible Without Anyone Noticing

“We can see the same logic at work with the way that many people read the Bible today. For large numbers of churchgoers it is presented as a clean, coherent and cohesive text, an image that we tend to adopt for ourselves. Then, depending upon what we think the message of the text is, we simply refuse to see anything that might contradict our reading. We thus treat those parts of the text that might contradict our interpretation as taboo…We see them without acknowledging them, we look at them in much the same way as a cow gazes at a passing car.”

Most Inspiring (nominated by Janet Oberholtzer): 
MORE Magazine with “Kathryn Stockett’s ‘The Help’ Turned Down 60 Times….

Most Challenging: 
Michael Agger at Slate with “Slowpoke: How to Be a Faster Writer

Biggest Surprise:
Her.Meneutics with “The Newest U.S. Mission Field: Women
[So can we PLEASE stop talking about the “feminization” of the Church already?]

Best Reflection:
Sarah Moon with “I’m Done…

“I know I am right for supporting the causes that I do, because my causes are trying to set people free….But my causes forget that oppressors are in bondage too.”

Best Analysis: 
Mimi Haddad at Red Letter Christians with “Women Should Remain Silent?

Best Presentation:
Chris Seay at TEDx Houston with "Telling Better Stories"

Most Powerful:
Josette Sheeran with "You have the power to end world hunger"

"I am optimistic that now is the time to solve chronic hunger -- the kind that traps generation after generation into a scourge of malnutrition, debilitation and premature death. A convergence of a number of factors -- innovative ideas, dedicated people, new-found resources and political resolve -- are taking root in countries, at the grass-roots level, which are transforming the challenge before us." 

On the Blog…

Most Popular Post: 
My Story is More Interesting Than That

Most Popular Comment:
In response to “My Story is More Interesting Than That,” David Nilsen wrote:

“When my wife and I got married almost 10 year ago at 19 (I know, I know), we were mature for our age but still very much our age. We didn't know ourselves fully and we didn't know what we believed fully. We were verbally all about women being equal to men but were still locked firmly into the classic evangelical perspective of gender roles - I was the "leader" in our home, women were not pastors, etc. And our personalities lent themselves to perpetuating this. My wife is naturally a more passive, pliant personality, while I am a more dominant personality. And so I was dominant in our relationship, and she was largely passive. While we made all our decisions together and loved each other a great deal right from the beginning of our marriage, it took me many years to realize that I was unconsciously co-opting the evangelical position on marriage to get my way through force of will, and she was doing the same thing to avoid having to figure out what she wanted in life.
Was that wrong? Yes. Did we both experience hurt from this? Yes. Was I doing it on purpose? No. Was she? No. We were immature, learning, growing, loving. And we are much, much better at it now, especially over the last couple years as we've looked back and realized what we'd been doing, what I'd been doing, and worked on getting better. I never intended to be a bully, never thought of Lyndie as unequal, always loved and valued her. But I was immature and it took some blinders being stripped away to make the big steps toward maturity as an individual and within our marriage…
All this is to say: Don should have known better, but I doubt he meant this as it came across. At almost 40 years of age he is clumsily stepping into a new role for the very first time - husband - and trying to figure out what that means. Unfortunately he is doing it publicly, and letting his pen say things his heart probably understands much more clearly and reasonably than his posts implied. He was wrong. But let's show him grace.”

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So what’s happening on your blog this week? What caught your eye online?

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