Posts Tagged 'Fort Collins'

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Vote: Why Local Politics Matter More Than You Think


 

A Q&A with Kurt Kastein about the importance and function of city government.


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Truth, Justice and a Better Way: A Conversation about Racism and the Gospel


 


You will most likely read an article similar to this one later this year and probably again a year or so after that. This is not meant to devalue your current use of time and oxygen. It’s meant to underscore a problem in our country that doesn’t seem to be going away.

Much of the time we forget there is a problem. Our 24-hour news cycle ruins our memory. Sorry, can’t recall what happened two weeks ago—something super important is going down right now!

Trayvon Martin was killed nearly five years ago. Michael Brown was killed just over two years ago. But in our collective conscience, these stories may as well have taken place a generation ago. Even the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castille, two black men who were shot and killed by police officers on July 5 and 6, respectively, of this year, have already faded from our memories. This is particularly strange given that it was their deaths that prompted the Black Lives Matter rally in Dallas on July 7.

Do you remember Dallas? Five Dallas police officers, who were providing security for the rally, were shot and killed by a sniper. I remember Dallas. I watched it unfold in real time on Twitter. I remember the feeling of despair sinking deeper and deeper into my gut. I remember thinking that our country was coming apart.

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Topless in the Areopagus: The Importance of Words and Worldview in the Public Square


 


It wasn’t exactly the fun night on the town that my husband and I envisioned once our kids left home. But on Tuesday, Scott and I joined other Fort Collins citizens at the City Council meeting to see if a city ordinance would be changed to allow female nudity from the waist up. This proposed change caught the attention of national news outlets mainly, I’m sure, because “topless” is a word that gets lots of clicks — which, ironically, is part of the problem we wanted to address.

When the Council finished presenting the two options — amend the prohibition to allow for breastfeeding in public or change it to allow toplessness completely — about 40 people lined up to speak their minds. Each person had a two-minute limit, and I was struck by the lucidity of the speakers. A variety of points were made, and some people took the time before they spoke to complement previous thoughts. It was civil and organized and passionate. I came away wishing the presidential debates went like this.

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This Is Not Your Home: Make It Great, Seek Its Good


 


It was an illuminating conversation. At the NoCo USA Pro Challenge Festival in Summitview’s north parking lot, I spoke with Bob Williams, founder of Beer and Bike Tours (yeah, that’s a thing). Bob had been manning a tent at the event with a new intern who had arrived here only days before. The intern was wide-eyed the entire evening, marveling at the spirit of the people, the weather, the music, the food and the “bikey-ness” of it all. He asked Bob, “Is this what Fort Collins is like every day?”

Bob simply replied, “Yeah.”

Welcome to Fort Collins, bike intern.

Often, as Shelli and I set off on our bikes for a date, I find myself grateful to live in this city. And I’m not alone. People love our city and happily spend a little extra to call it home.

But for those of us who trust, worship and follow Jesus as Savior, God and King, this is not our home. Hold Fort Collins loosely, my friends.

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Is Anybody There? On Mary, Martha and Feeling Alone in Children’s Ministry


 


I want to ask a personal question and share a story of difficulty in my own life. The question I want to ask is this:

Do you feel alone in Children’s Ministry?

I don’t mean that you are alone. You could very well be serving with a spouse, with a friend, another family or with a small group member. But what I mean is this: Regardless of who you’re with, do you feel alone?

I got off to a late and rocky start as a classroom leader this last rotation and I didn’t feel I had everything together to serve well in the Children’s Ministry. I’ve recently been able to work through a little more of my own pain, pessimism, downcast spirit and hopelessness, and I want to share with everyone who has felt alone in Children’s Ministry that I, too, feel alone.

I don’t mention this to shame or guilt trip anyone — what good does that do? Rather, I want to share this because it is truly how I’ve felt, how many of us may feel. We know intuitively that this is not what ministry should feel like.

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