ANGER -- January/February
Due date: 5/15/00

We live in an age of road rage, hate crimes, and threats to "make my day." Anger is a basic human emotion, yet it is frequently expressed inappropriately. When turned outward, it can result in violent acts that hurt others. When turned inward, it can manifest itself as depression or self-destructive behaviors. How can we use anger as a tool rather than a weapon? In what ways have you attempted to resolve anger-your own or others'? How did Jesus use his anger? respond to angry opponents? How do you understand God's anger?

Due date: 7/15/00

Traditionally, the spiritual discipline of fasting has served as an act of repentance and has freed those who practiced it to receive other gifts. While fasting from food may be deeply meaningful for some, others may find it impossible for health reasons. But there are ways to fast other than abstaining from food. Isaiah 58 records God's preference for a fast from injustice and hypocrisy. Rueben Job and Marjorie Thompson suggest in Together in Christ that the most meaningful fasts are ones in which we abstain from those things that fill our lives to the point of crowding out God. What has threatened to crowd God out of your life? How has a fast opened you to the grace of God? In this Lenten issue, we will explore Jesus' fast in the wilderness, the tradition of fasting during Lent, and the joy of breaking a fast at Easter.

Due date: 9/15/00

For people of faith in the Bible and throughout the history of the Church, availability is a primary characteristic. Availability involves opening ourselves to God's guidance and attempting to follow God's direction in our lives. As Christians, we are also called to make ourselves available to others. In this issue, we will look at the ways the first Christians made themselves available to God following Pentecost. How do you seek to make yourself available? How do you struggle with competing claims on your availability? Where have you gained wisdom about living as a Christian who is available to God and others?

WORSHIP -- July/August
Due date: 11/15/00

The Westminster Shorter Catechism states that the chief end of humankind is to glorify God and enjoy God forever. In this issue we will explore how we glorify God through the movements of the worship service: preparation and gathering, praise and prayer, confession and pardon, proclamation and response, sacraments, and sending forth. When have you experienced the power of these acts? In what ways do they glorify God? How do the movements of worship shape us as people of faith? How do they provide a structure for living all our lives to the glory of God?

MONEY -- September/October
Due date: 1/15/00

"Money makes the world go around," sing the characters in the musical Cabaret. While we might argue the truth of this claim, money or a means of exchange is a basic prerequisite on which a society is built. As Christians, do we view money as sinful, a necessary evil, a blessing from God, or a means toward doing good? How do you struggle with the way you earn, save, spend, or give away money? How do you keep from becoming obsessed with money, possessions, and other people having more than you do? What witness is the Church called to offer in the midst of society that appears to believe that money makes the world go around? Is there such a thing as Christian economics?

Due date: 3/15/00

"Prepare the way of the Lord," proclaims John the Baptist, echoing the words of Isaiah 40. Advent is a time to prepare for Christ's birth anew in our lives, yet often this preparation is overtaken by the busyness of holiday activities. What does it mean to prepare the way and how does this relate to hope, peace, joy, and love? In what ways do you seek to prepare yourself? How does this manifest itself in acts of love and justice in the world? What would the world look like if it were truly ready for the Messiah's arrival?


You are welcome to submit stories, poems, scripture-based meditations, and prayers. We also invite suggestions for reprints (please send copies of the original source and the copyright page). Be sure to have your name, address, social security number, and intended theme on each page of material you send. Unused material will be returned if you include a SASE (please include separate SASE for each theme). We pay a modest honorarium upon publication. We are a small staff and do not have time to critique material. We reserve the right to change themes as necessary. Please see our Writers' Guidelines for our mailing address and for more details.

Our Mission

Alive Now is a devotional magazine that supports the spiritual lives of small groups as well as individuals. The magazine invites readers to enter an ever-deepening relationship with God, helps them reflect on contemporary issues from a faith perspective, and supports them in acting on these issues.

General Guidelines

Each issue of this bimonthly, 64-page magazine focuses on a contemporary topic that impacts the faith life. Divided into eight sections that move readers through exploration and reflection on the theme, the magazine may be used weekly by individuals or members of small groups. The sections contain scripture, prayers, meditations, stories, poetry, reflection aids, photographs, and art. Seasonal material, both theological and liturgical, is appropriate.


Alive Now is ecumenical, including both lay persons and church professionals. Our readers are primarily adults -- from young adults to older adults -- and include persons of many cultures and ethnic backgrounds.

Style and Format

Your submissions should invite readers to seek God in the midst of daily life by exploring how contemporary issues impact their faith lives. We do not pretend to have the final answer to life's dilemmas. But we hope that the magazine will provide a glimpse of the life of faith to which we all are called.

Submit for a theme. We make selections based on a list of upcoming themes. Manuscripts which do not fit a theme will be returned. To receive a current themes list by mail, please send your request to us with a self-addressed, stamped envelope. We place manuscripts on long-term hold for specific issues. Authors are free to request that their manuscripts be returned to them at any time during the long-term hold.

Meditations and stories should be 250 to 500 words. Send your best work. Use language that is inclusive. Material that contains sexist language and imagery is difficult to use.

Manuscript Preparation

Contributions should be typed, double-spaced, on 8 1/2" x 11" paper and should be accompanied by a self-addressed, stamped envelope for return. If you are submitting material for more than one theme, send an SASE for each theme represented. On each page you submit, include your name, address, social security number, and the theme for which the piece is being sent.

Notification and Payment

Payment will be made at the time of acceptance for publication. We will notify contributors of manuscript status when we make final decisions for a theme, three months before the issue date. Unusable material will be returned if an SASE was sent with the manuscript. We purchase newspaper, periodical, and electronic rights so that we can respond to requests for reprints from local church publications and other periodicals as well as promote the magazine on the World Wide Web. We may purchase one-time use.


Film Review An Interview Editor's Perspective Creativity Room Discussion Room Links