2013-12-24 20_opt

Meditations for the First Week of Advent

First Sunday of AdventSing: O come, O come, Emmanuel, and ransom captive Israel, that mourns in lonely exile here, until the Son of God appears.Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel! Reflect:No matter how much beauty, goodness, and truth we find here, Eternity is in our hearts. We can no more reach the Eternal than we can wish away death. The good news is that God came our way and appeared at a bleak time in human history.In His own person, God reunited our … [Read More...]

2004-12-19 01_opt

Gentle Happiness

The world is hurting, but we cannot always be looking outward. I have hurts, death in my family, assorted failures, but I cannot always be looking inward. Instead, following the example of Jesus, I try to go apart. Sometimes the cares follow me, as they did Jesus, but often I can stop and rest.Just now, Hope is in the kitchen making something delicious for dessert. Lewis is setting up our Christmas village. The other adult children are reading, napping, or chatting with friends in the house. … [Read More...]

Liberal Arts Education Needs Brave Defenders

Civilization is hard to build and easy to lose. Without courage and conviction, much we now take for granted, peace, relative liberty, and civility will be lost. One mark of the health of a civilization is the value it gives the liberal arts. At every level of education from kindergarten to college, … [Read More...]

These Holy-Days: Brave Enough for Love

This Thanksgiving, this Advent, this Christmas let's be brave enough for love. Forget mere sappiness: the martyrs in Syria love without a trace of false sentiment. The great cathedrals were built with a love tough enough to sweat and sacrifice over generations to create beauty. Love requires … [Read More...]

Holiday Advice: Dealing with Your Crazy Evangelical Uncle

Evidently giving advice about how to handle the stress of what the Victorians called "social intercourse" with those who do not agree is a thing now.Despite a sneaking suspicion that the number of people actually worried about awkward conversations at dinner is roughly equal to the number of … [Read More...]

Great Leaders: Thankful for the Virtues of Seven Women

We need leaders. Talent we can find, but good leaders have talent with character. I have been blessed to be surrounded at all points in my career and education with leaders, listing seven men was difficult enough, but choosing seven women was nearly impossible. Having a mother and a wife who lead … [Read More...]

Great Leaders: Thankful for the Virtues of Seven Men

Leadership is easy to describe as an ideal, but the leader who can say with Saint Paul, "Follow my example" is rare.  Easy enough to list the failures, but better to be thankful for those who, like Paul, are an example of virtuous leadership that pointed me to Jesus. In another place, I list seven wo … [Read More...]

Five Horrible Ideas for Thanksgiving Dinner

Times are bad as times often are, yet in the week ahead we will pause in our work and give thanks. Those Americans who can will feast together to celebrate the good things God has given us. Glory to God for all things!Yet for every Rockwell Thanksgiving, every plan that goes well, there will be … [Read More...]

Wisdom: The Bishops of Antioch Speak on Syrian Refugees

Here is the official statement: Statement from the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America on the Reception of Refugees in the United States in Light of Recent Terrorist Actions around the WorldSince the tragic terrorist actions in Paris, Beirut, Mali and elsewhere in the p … [Read More...]

Fearless Living: Three Things to Do

These are fearful times, though it is important to remember that times are generally fearful. Media enables us to know tragedies in part of the world as they happen and so things can even seem worse than they are. In my grandparents generation, the events on other continents might remain unknown … [Read More...]

Islam: For the Sake of the Gospel, Let’s Tell the Truth

We cannot love our Islamic neighbor or expect them to come to Christianity through any ministry that misunderstands or lies about their beliefs.The so-called Islamic State (Da'esh) is not much of state and is not mainstream Islam.Don't be confused. I am a Christian who belongs to a church … [Read More...]

Why We Should Stop Admitting Syrian Refugees for Now

If you love Syria, oppose radical relocation as a solution to the problems in Syria. The dream of a multiethnic, religiously diverse, free Syria must not be allowed to die through the barbarism of Daesh (the so-called Islamic State). Let's not spend twelve times as much on each refugee we relocate … [Read More...]

Refugees: Prudence isn’t Cruel and Tokenism Is Not Virtue

My social media contains two extremes:If you oppose bringing 10,000 more Syrian refugees to the United States, then you are like the people who turned away Jews during the Holocaust or you wish to ban the Christ child from seeking shelter in Egypt.If you support helping the refugees, you are … [Read More...]

Fear Itself: Three Things to Do

Fear destroys love and love is the only motive for any Christian action.Don't be confused. Love is not weak, but demands justice for the beloved. Love has mercy, but mercy is not incompatible with a just war. We can do justice without rejoicing in the necessary death of any human being.The … [Read More...]