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An experiment in notetaking

Today I finished How To Take Smart Notes. The book summarizes the system of notetaking of Niklas Luhmann, who was a prolific writer. How did he do it? He took good notes. He took literature notes on his reading, compiled separate notes on how the reading connected to the work he was doing and the […]

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Seminary Notes 13: Goodbye, Hebrew

Wednesday morning, I printed out the four pages of my Hebrew final and dug in. We had three and a half hours to take it and I had less than fifteen minutes to spare by the time I turned it in. It was long. It was grueling. But it is done. In a different format, […]

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Good lyrics, good vibes

Six or eight weeks ago, I made a playlist of country songs by female artists from the 90s and 2000s. I hope you are envisioning Shania Twain and Faith Hill because they are certainly on there. And Sara Evans. I had a huge Sara Evans obsession for a while in high school.  I didn’t make […]

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Theology matters, so does what we say about sex

Yesterday, a friend sent me a screenshot of Rich Villodas discussing his endorsement, and the retraction of his endorsement, for Josh Butler’s upcoming book Beautiful Union. I dug around into the story-though I couldn’t read the original post on The Gospel Coalition because they had deleted it-and was disturbed by the premise. In fact, I […]

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The finish line

Last week, my academic advisor saved my summer and my graduation date. For months I had been mulling over how I could have four kids out of school, work a part-time job, complete apprenticeship requirements, and take two graduate classes. In case you are thinking, “easy, Lisa, just take fewer classes to accommodate for the […]

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Complicate your theories

Cultivating compassion for the stories of actual people that you know and respect will complicate all of your abstract theories. Homosexuality. Race. Gender roles. Immigration. People should complicate our theories. If your beliefs are theoretical, if you haven’t wrestled with them in the context of actual lives, stop talking until you have. Chances are that […]

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No more “just”

“I’m just five foot ten.” “I’ve just got four kids.” I’ve said both of these sentences in the past week and a half. In both cases minimizing what is present by comparing it to some imaginary larger or better something. I’m not six foot, just five foot ten. I don’t have five kids, just four. […]

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