About Camcole

Cameron Cole is the director of student ministries at the Cathedral Church of the Advent in Birmingham, AL and the chairman of Rooted: A Theology Conference for Student Ministry. He edits The Rooted Blog: Encouraging Grace-Driven Student Ministry.

http://therootedblog.blogspot.com/

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Author Archive
    Eminem Writes the Textbook on Reconciliation… Sort Of

    Eminem Writes the Textbook on Reconciliation… Sort Of

    When I teach students about reconciliation, I start with an unexpected source: Eminem. Believe it or not, his new track, “Headlights,” serves not only as a musical olive branch to his mother but as a beautiful example of human reconciliation. At the same time, the rapper demonstrates an interesting deviation from this approach when he considers divine reconciliation.

    Eminem describes his tense, explosive arguments with his mother as “atomic bombs” and the climate of his house growing up as “Vietnam.” He suggests that his mother struggled with alcoholism to such a degree that the state ultimately seized his younger brother, Nate,…

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    Even Lebron James Needs Help, or Heat Hate and the Offensiveness of the Gospel

    Even Lebron James Needs Help, or Heat Hate and the Offensiveness of the Gospel

    God forgive me, I detest the Miami Heat. As I watched the Heat cap off another championship, I fumed with anger, and I don’t really even care about NBA basketball. The only times I turned on the NBA Playoffs was when it appeared that a team may take down the franchise that I despise more than any professional team I ever have seen.

    I have had to assess why it is this sports franchise can elevate my blood pressure to the point that I have been up until 12:30AM CST the nights after Game 6 and Game 7, stewing over their…

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    Hugo, Rooted, and the Orphaned Teenage Heart

    Hugo, Rooted, and the Orphaned Teenage Heart

    The protagonist in the movie Hugo offers valuable insight into the primal motivation at the core of every soul.  Hugo, an orphan in Paris, engages in a persistent – almost obsessive – endeavor to repair an automaton, which his father worked on before dying during Hugo’s childhood. Unknown to the audience for much of the movie, Hugo’s project is driven by the hope of discovering a message from his late father to him, hidden within the machine.

    Hugo never discloses specifically what he hopes that message will be, but one only can assume that the words he seeks are the very ones every…

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    Championships By Grace (Not Works)

    Championships By Grace (Not Works)

    With the dawn of every football season, every team (however unrealistic it may be) begins with hopes of claiming the BCS national championship. As the season progresses, they desire to maintain a position whereby they “control their own destiny.” This term, often used in sports, means that a team relies on no external factors for their ultimate fate: if they win their own games, they will make it to the national championship game.

    That fateful Saturday inevitably comes for nearly all programs, where the team loses their first game, and the second season of the “scenario game” begins.

    After Alabama lost to…

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    The Voice and Gabriel Biel

    The Voice and Gabriel Biel

    To counter ABC’s reality dominance with American Idol, NBC has launched (and hyped) a new vocal competition show, called The Voice. NBC’s angle involves selecting the candidates purely based on vocal performance- not stage presence and sex appeal- by having contestants audition for celebrity voice coaches, who sit with their backs turned to the vocalist.

    If the contestant measures up, coaches can press their buzzer at any time during the audition, whereby their chair will turn to face the singer and a sign lights up saying, “I WANT YOU” (all caps). If a performer cannot attract the attention of any of the…

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    Conference Preview: Romantic Reality and the Theology of the Cross for a Postmodern Generation

    Conference Preview: Romantic Reality and the Theology of the Cross for a Postmodern Generation

    Nothing screams for the Theology of the Cross like The Bachelor, The Kardashians, and Teen Mom. In this workshop, Romantic Reality and the Theology of the Cross for a Postmodern Generation, we will look at  today’s uniquely postmodern youth culture through the lens of reality television and romantic comedies. Then we will examine how Martin Luther’s Theology of the Cross outlines the crucial approach for ministering to  this generation and communicating the gospel of grace. Whether it is the description of sin, the engagement of suffering, or simply the overall obsession with romantic love (and failure to achieve it in…

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    College Football Message Boards… and Sanctification

    College Football Message Boards… and Sanctification

    One of my favorite pastimes (addictions) is surfing message board related to Alabama football, predominantly TiderInsider and BamaOnline. I love scouring the threads for inside information about player development, recruiting, coaching changes, and SEC rumors. The world of football message boards can be toxic, erratic, and exhilarating all at the same time. When Alabama loses a recruit of a football game, the board spirals into a meltdown. After Alabama lands a major recruit, particularly at the expense of a rival, electric euphoria fills the air.

    Over the past five years, much has changed with Alabama football, but little has changed in…

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    Burn, Babywise, Burn!

    Burn, Babywise, Burn!

    Perhaps, it’s just a product of sleep deprivation. Maybe it’s my tendency to use hyperbole. Possibly, it’s accumulated stress of four months with an infant. But let me just say this with a straight face: if there is actually fire in hell, my wife and I have some books about infant sleep habits, and I’m more than willing to let them be the tender of the flames of infernal Hades.

    Certainly, there are people who embrace their BabyWise or Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Baby in the same way they hug their precious child, but I’d be more than happy to…

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    30 for 30: Marcus Dupree, Theologian of the Cross

    30 for 30: Marcus Dupree, Theologian of the Cross

    The crown jewel of the brilliant ESPN documentary collection, 30 for 30, has to be The Best That Never Was. At least for me. The documentary chronicles the life of Marcus Dupree, perhaps the greatest running back ever in high school football.

    Dupree was the center of the most heated recruiting frenzy in the history of college football back in 1981. Nearly 100 schools hotly pursued Dupree’s signature before he ultimately landed in Norman, Oklahoma with the Sooners. With the expectation that he would evolve into the greatest running back ever to play college or professional football, the star did not…

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    Cam Newton, Michael Vick, and the Economy of Forgiveness

    Cam Newton, Michael Vick, and the Economy of Forgiveness

    Two electric, sensational quarterbacks defined both college and professional football in 2010. At the professional level, Michael Vick realized the unbelievable potential that he showed glimpses of at Virginia Tech and in Atlanta, taking the Philadelphia Eagles to first place in the NFC East. Meanwhile, Cam Newton had one of the greatest seasons in the history of college football, making Tim Tebow’s legendary 2007 campaign look like an off-year. He brought Auburn to the brink of a national championship birth and perhaps the school’s greatest season ever.

    Beyond their extraordinary performance on the field, the two quarterbacks share common baggage. Michael…

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    Mercedes: The Race to Perfection Has No Finish Line

    Mercedes: The Race to Perfection Has No Finish Line

    I was struck by the audacity and insight of a Mercedes S-Series commercial, which I saw recently on television. As they touted the sophisticated technology in their new car, including features to regulate automatically the car, if it detects a the driver has fallen asleep, Mercedes makes a proclamation: because the race to perfection has no finish line.

    How true, how true. This slogan captures the ultimate root and result of human behavior. People may claim to pursue excellence, peace, fame, wealth, or popularity, but at the bottom of this striving is a need to be perfect. This perfection may be…

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    Nick Saban and the Doctrine of Imputation

    Nick Saban and the Doctrine of Imputation

    At a wedding shower for my wife and me, the hosts played a game where they asked us both the same questions about one another to test how well we knew each other going into marriage. With my wife out of the room, they asked me who my favorite superhero was. I quickly responded, “Nick Saban.” As the game went, my wife was brought into the room and asked the same questions about me. When asked who she thought my favorite superhero was, she immediately replied, “That’s easy. Nick Saban.”

    It’s true: I’m pretty much obsessed with Nick Saban. On…

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    The Batchelorette and "That Guy"

    The Batchelorette and "That Guy"

    [Disclaimer: I’m a dude. I mean really a dude. I love football, BBQ, and Braveheart. I roll 6’5, 235, but I do watch The Bachelorette with my wife.] 

    Many of us are making our way through the guilty pleasure of The Bachelorette: Season 6. If you have watched a few seasons of The Bachelorette (I have watched three, which is as many years as I have been married), then you have  probably nailed The Bachelorette archetypes, which reappear season after season.

    There’s the “Too Good to Be True” character – Roberto this season – who just…

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