Archive - Flotsam and jetsam RSS Feed

Flotsam and jetsam (5/10)

mothers

Good Reads

  • Searching for Gospel-Centered Theology Before the Reformation: At the heart of my generation is a profound emptiness—a sense of isolation and disconnectedness and consequent malaise. We’re aching for the ancient and the august, for transcendence and tradition, for that which has stability and solidity and substance. And it’s driving many of us out of evangelicalism.
  • Small Enough to Do and Big Enough to Matter: How does one start from scratch to encourage and strengthen Christian institutional leaders or the health of congregations? How does one know what to do at any given moment so those tasks add up in a way that results in progress over the long term?
  • Where Have All the Women Leaders Gone? For the last half-century, women, especially Christian women, have chaffed between competing, anemic ideologies about how we should spend our lives. In part, that’s why today’s women aren’t as interested in ambitious careers and high-level positions. We have yet to receive a robust, comprehensive vision of what is possible in a single human life.
  • 12 Things to Do After Graduating: All of a sudden, they’re supposed to be adults. Yet all they’ve ever been is students. What do you do when there’s no class schedule? What do you do when you have to cook for yourself, clean for yourself? What do you do when, suddenly, you go from being the golden child to just another kid trying to get a job at Starbucks?

Continue Reading…

Flotsam and jetsam (5/8)

Good Reads

  • Is That God Talking? I still remember how startled I was when a young woman I was interviewing told me God had spoken to her, audibly.
  • Lack of sleep blights pupils’ education: Sleep deprivation is a significant hidden factor in lowering the achievement of school pupils, according to researchers carrying out international education tests.
  • Is Bad Doctrine Sin? I suppose that I want bad doctrine to always be sin. That way, it is easy for me to explain why people don’t agree with me. If we are not on the same page theologically, the answer is simple: they are in sinful rebellion to the truth.

Continue Reading…

Flotsam and jetsam (5/6)

Good Reads

  • When Christians become a ‘hated minority’: We’ve heard of the “down-low” gay person who keeps his or her sexual identity secret for fear of public scorn. But Sprigg and other evangelicals say changing attitudes toward homosexuality have created a new victim: closeted Christians who believe the Bible condemns homosexuality but will not say so publicly for fear of being labeled a hateful bigot.
  • When We Hate What We Love: Unplugging alone was not a remedy to relationship, to productivity, or to much of anything else.

Continue Reading…

Flotsam and jetsam (5/3)

don't mess with father and son day

Good Reads

  • You Can’t Pack Everything Into Your Sermon: Just like a Dad has to break it to his little girl that she cannot bring 7 stuffed animals and 4 dollies, so to the preacher needs to break it to himself that he can’t bring every good quote that Tim Keller has ever said about the gospel. For the sake of your family, you have to leave some stuff behind.
  • Why Isn’t Servant Leadership More Prevalent? With servant leadership, a leader’s primary role is to serve employees. Everyone from Lao-Tzu to Max De Pree thinks this a wonderful model. Why then, asks Professor Jim Heskett, is this style so rare among CEOs?
  • Are Christian Statistical Researchers Like Jesus, the Pharisees, or Oliver Stone? There’s nothing new about people’s claiming that they’re like Jesus while other people are not (see “Historical Jesus, Quest for the”), but a stroll through the annals of Christian History shows us that whenever these episodes arise, the most interesting thing to watch is how people wind up defining the person and work of Jesus. Invariably, the temptation when deciding who among us is the most like Christ is to stack the deck beforehand by defining Christ in ways that make Him most like me.
  • Why You Should Not Listen to Me: Influence. It’s a funny thing. It’s inescapable–someone will always be perceived to have it or not have it, to either use or misuse it.

Continue Reading…

April’s Top Posts

In case you missed anything, here are our top posts from the last month. We had a great time exploring our personalities (introversion and extroversion), my upcoming transition to the doctoral program at Wheaton College, the nature of heresy, and the relationship between the mind and worship. All in all, it was a good month!

Flotsam and jetsam (4/26)

Good Reads

  • Isolated in America: I wonder if social isolation — not extremist religion or Chechen roots — explains the two brothers who set off bombs during the Boston Marathon, killing three and wounding more than 170.
  • Foster a Culture of Gratitude: Research on gratitude and appreciation demonstrates that when employees feel valued, they have high job satisfaction, are willing to work longer hours, engage in productive relationships with co-workers and supervisors, are motivated to do their best, and work towards achieving the company’s goals.

Continue Reading…

Flotsam and jetsam (4/24)

the perfect birthday card note

Good Reads

  • Wanted: An Adult Faith in a Youth Culture: I want a church where I know and feel that the adults are in charge, where wisdom trumps enthusiasm, where historical perspective is considered, where depth is valued as much as breadth, where stories have shaped us for generations.
  • There Are No Saints Online: Hate is a source of acknowledged pleasure. Hate-watching. Hate-listening. Hate-reading. These are all things that you, your friends, and your neighbors, not monsters, likely do. We deliberately expose ourselves to objects of contempt to stoke inner outrage in order to enjoy the release of fury.
  • The innovation of the early American church: Although it is commonplace today for Christians to create organizations that tackle social problems, that approach was an innovation in the American Protestant church, says one of the nation’s top church historians.
  • The Place of Blogs in Academic Writing: In this post I attempt to tackle a complex but increasingly important question: Should writers cite blog posts in formal academic writing (i.e. journal articles and books)? Unfortunately, rather than actually tackle this question, I find myself running sporadically around it. At best, I bump into the question a few times, but never come close to pinning down an answer.

Continue Reading…

Flotsam and jetsam (4/22)

Good Reads

  • The Lost Boys Give Back: The Lost Boys of Sudan are a group of thousands of young men from Sudan who fled the violence of their villages and lived in refugee camps for years before they were relocated to the United States, Australia, and other nations. After the cease-fire in 2005, many of them are looking homeward, and using the education and skills they’ve learned to help those who remain in Sudan.
  • Heaven Won’t Be Boring: If you lack a passion for heaven, I can almost guarantee it’s because you have a deficient and distorted theology of heaven (or you’re making choices that conflict with heaven’s agenda). An accurate and biblically energized view of heaven will bring a new spiritual passion to your life.
  • The Benefits of Church: One of the most striking scientific discoveries about religion in recent years is that going to church weekly is good for you. Religious attendance — at least, religiosity — boosts the immune system and decreases blood pressure. It may add as much as two to three years to your life. The reason for this is not entirely clear.
  • The Mystery of Original Sin: We don’t know why God permitted the Fall, but we know all too well the evil and sin that still plague us.

Continue Reading…

Flotsam and jetsam (4/19)

Good Reads

  • Do e-readers inhibit reading comprehension?  evidence from laboratory experiments, polls and consumer reports indicates that modern screens and e-readers fail to adequately recreate certain tactile experiences of reading on paper that many people miss and, more importantly, prevent people from navigating long texts in an intuitive and satisfying way. In turn, such navigational difficulties may subtly inhibit reading comprehension.
  • Why the Sermon Is Not Enough: even faithful attendees of weekly worship can overestimate what our attendance accomplishes, particularly if our weekly investment in learning Scripture begins and ends with listening to a sermon.
  •  A Final Wrap-Up: Doug Wilson and Thabiti Anyabwile finish up their discussion of race, theology and politics with a  nice summary of what they accomplished and where they still differ.
  • You’ll Probably Never Upload Your Mind into a Computer: Many futurists predict that one day we’ll upload our minds into computers, where we’ll romp around in virtual reality environments. That’s possible — but there are still a number of thorny issues to consider. Here are eight reasons why your brain may never be digitized.

Continue Reading…

Flotsam and jetsam (4/17)

Good Reads

  • Religious women press for change: Mormon women cannot be priests. Catholic women cannot be priests. Muslim women cannot lead prayers in mixed-gender congregations. Jewish women are restricted in praying at the Western Wall in Jerusalem. But Mormons have the “Let Women Pray” campaign. Catholics have the “Women’s Ordination Conference.” Muslims have “Muslims for Progressive Values.” Jews have “Women of the Wall.” What is going on here?
  • The Real Value of a College Education: Christians might thoughtfully reconsider the utilitarian language used describing the value of education today. A college degree isn’t only to be equated with job preparation and salary potential, and the value of college is far greater than the sum of a student’s potential earnings.
  • A New Wave of Complementarianism: There’s a new wave of complementarianism stirring. It’s not made up of true egalitarians, though those in this new movement respect many egalitarian concerns.

Continue Reading…