Courtney Ball

Category - Faith

Remember the Stars

Image from Y. Beletsky (LCO)/ESO – , CC BY 4.0, First, remember the stars. No matter how great our ugliness grows, it will never have the power to touch the astronomically huge beauty that simply exists–for eternity–whether we acknowledge it or not. This difficult day (and indeed your entire life) is but a moment. It will pass...

From Iowa With حب (Love)

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This is a project my team from Flow Media created for our Corridor Characters channel. Below is an introduction I wrote for Ministry Matters about why we created the video. Thanks for watching/sharing. “Islam is a violent religion.” “Muslims are dangerous.” “They’re terrorists.” How many times have we...

The Iowa Caucus Mob

There is a phrase in Latin, mobile vulgus, which means “the fickle crowd”. Mobile vulgus is where we get the English word “mob”. In ancient Rome, the mob became a dangerous political force which Emperors learned to pacify with free food and circuses. Every four years in my home state of Iowa, the circus comes to us as we...

Which Gospel are You Selling?

People buy stories, not the truth. Not long ago I read the helpful book All Marketers are Liars, by Seth Godin. Actually, the copy I picked up was a later edition, on which the phrase “are liars” had been scratched out and changed to “tell stories”. The basic premise of the book is that people buy goods or services...

Misunderstanding Purpose

Why did you get out of bed this morning? My guess is your answer involves more than, “I got bored with lying there,” or, “I had to go to the bathroom.” Okay, maybe you did have to go to the bathroom, but after that, you probably had some task to get done, right? Go to work. Get the kids off to school. Meet a deadline. Earn...

Real Community

My Camp Golden Valley Community. After almost 20 years, they’re like another set of relatives. Both my brothers have told me more than once, “Community for the sake of community is not enough.” (Strangely, we have these kinds of conversations.) I get what they mean, but I think they’re wrong. What they mean is that a...

You may not recognize Jesus this Easter

Mary Magdalene thought he was a gardener. Cleopas and his friend on the road to Emmaus mistook Jesus for a fellow traveler until he broke bread with them. When Jesus stood on the shoreline and called out to his fishing disciples, Peter and the others could not recognize him. John writes that when the eleven first saw the risen Jesus, they...

Zit Karma and Other Superstitions

My wife and I believe in “zit karma”. The way it works is, if you point out a pimple on someone’s face, you are doomed to get an equal or greater blemish on your own. It’s the universe’s way of making sure you don’t become callous toward the dermatological misfortunes of others. It teaches us compassion. Zit...