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The Wired Child (infographic)

My daughters love their technology. My 12-year old has an iPod and a laptop — in our defense, they were both given to her as hand-me-downs — and my youngest already uses my wife’s laptop to do her homework. (I could have also mentioned her using the same laptop to play games or watch movies, but it sounded so much more responsible to point out the educational use of technology. So I’ll stick with that.) They can go days without watching TV, but rarely does a day go by without some iPod/laptop time.

So we’re keenly interested in what people are saying about how technology impacts children. And this infographic does a nice job summarizing some of the more interesting findings.

wired-child (575x4226)

via Early Childhood Education Degrees.

 

Flotsam and jetsam (10/11)

government

Good Reads

  • The Meaning of Martyrdom: For people who practise religion in comfortable, well-ordered places, and face no greater physical danger than sore knees or feet, the idea of being a martyr (in the sense of dying for one’s faith and receiving a heavenly reward) can seem rather remote. But in almost all the world’s religions, martyrdom plays an important role. (The Economist)
  • What Multitasking Does To Your Brain: In case we needed another reason to close the 15 extra browser tabs we have open, Clifford Nass, a communication professor at Stanford, has provided major motivation for monotasking: according to his research, the more you multitask, the less you’re able to learn, concentrate, or be nice to people. (Fast Company)

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The Maturing of the Evangelical Mind

brain exercising (300x286)Almost 20 years ago, Mark Noll’s The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind critiqued evangelicalism, quite simply, for not having much of a mind. In this short video, three leading evangelical, all presidents of key evangelical institutions, discuss whether we can now talk about “the maturing of the evangelical mind.” Al Mohler (Southern Seminar), Phil Ryken (Wheaton College), and Michael Lindsey (Gordon College) all argue that we’ve come a long way in the last two decades.

In the video, they specifically highlight the following as evidence of evangelicalism’s increased intellectual vigor:

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Nothing New Under the Sun: Theological Novelty and Heresy

It’s always a little sad when you run across someone who is excited about some theological concept they just came across, thinking that it will revolutionize the way people think about God or themselves, and you have to point out that it’s actually an ancient heresy that the church considered and rejected long ago.

That’s the gist of this cartoon: “new” theological ideas are almost always simple repetitions of older heresies. There’s nothing new under the sun, right?

Not quite. At first, I thought this comic was just funny. Then I thought again. Scroll down to see what I mean.

theological novelty

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How to Google Like a Boss (infographic)

Almost everyone uses Google these days, especially students. But with just a few tips and tricks, you can use it much more effectively. Here’s how.

Google-like-a-boss

There Were No “Dark Ages”

eclipse (300x300)I have written before about why we need to eliminate the idea of a “Golden Age” of Christianity, a time when the church was nearly perfect, an era that we just need to imitate if we want to create healthier churches today. And, after a few minutes reflection, most people accept that every generation had its flaws and foibles. We learn from them not because they were perfect but because they walked before us and modeled how to live faithfully in the midst of a horribly broken world.

But many still want to hold on to the Golden Age’s evil twin brother: the Dark Age, an age where the church was so fallen and its understanding of the truth so twisted that we have virtually nothing to learn from those who lived through those dismal days. An age when the lights went out, leaving only darkness.

For most Protestants, the Dark Age was not just a particular generation, or even an entire century. No, we have our sights on something bigger, blacker, and more tragic: the wasteland of medieval Christianity. A thousand years lost in the dark void between the bright lights of the early church and the Reformation.

[This is the beginning of my most recent post over at Christianity.com. Head over there to read the rest, and let me know what you think.]

Flotsam and jetsam (10/9)

boomerang fear

Good Reads

  • It’s Time to Talk about Power: As one who frequently wears what I have come to call the Wireless Headset of Authority, I have begun to worry that it is not just our microphones that are becoming invisible. What is also becoming invisible, especially to those with the most to gain and to lose, is power. (Andy Crouch)

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Selfless Saint or Arrogant Jerk? A Church Search Dilemma

body of christ (300x300)If the church is a body, I’m definitely a mouth. I’d like to believe that I’m a brain — the one that gets all the smarts and makes all the decisions — but in reality I’m more of a mouth: I talk when I should be listening, and I don’t like to get my hands dirty. Of course, that’s because a mouth doesn’t really have hands. But you get the point.

And Paul says that a healthy church needs to have all the body parts. After all, a mouth is pretty pointless without at least a few ears around. And if we were all eyes, we’d always be getting stuff in our eyes, probably from rolling around on the ground all the time, and we wouldn’t have any fingers to get it out, which would be super annoying.

So we need variety in the body. I get that.

The Question

But here’s my question. When you’re looking for a new church, should you consider whether a church already has people with your particular gifts, focusing on churches where there seems to more of a need in areas where you can make a real contribution, or should you just find the best church around you and trust that God will find a way to use you there?

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The Best Excuse Ever for Not Remembering a Source

You know those times when you know that you know what you know, but you don’t know from where you know it? In this fabulous video clip, David Mitchell not only defends why he can’t remember his sources, but why it would be detrimental for him even to try. 

Brilliant.

I am totally going to use this the next time I can’t remember where I learned something. But if you’re one of my students, don’t even think about it. I have no problem with double standards.

HT 22 Words

Flotsam and jetsam (10/7)

baptism

Good Reads

  • Reading Literary Fiction Improves Empathy: Researchers at The New School in New York City have found evidence that literary fiction improves a reader’s capacity to understand what others are thinking and feeling. (Scientific American)
  • The Conference Shaking Up America’s Evangelicals: On Wednesday evening, 30 of America’s most influential evangelicals met on the patio of Marlow’s Tavern outside Atlanta for a private dinner….They met to catch up with old friends, make new ones, and brainstorm possible future endeavors together. (Time)
  • Holy Trollers: How to argue about religion online: When I first started writing about religion for an online news site, I eagerly turned to the comment section for my articles, fishing for compliments and wondering if I had provoked any thoughtful discussions about faith. I don’t wonder anymore. (CNN)
  • Stop Slandering Christ’s Bride: the surest sign that thousands of Christian in church congregations across the country are talking about an issue is that someone will claim that believers in America are not talking about it. (Gospel Coalition)

Other Info

Just for Fun

  • The never-ending epic struggle continues: Geeks vs. Nerds.