A New Meaning of Freedom

Marie was a young woman who struggled with her weight, starting from a young age. At seven, her mother placed her on her first diet. At fifteen, they took her to an institution to be treated for bulimia. Like all chronic dieters, she suffered from a weight that yoyo-ed. Marie could never be satisfied, for she was bombarded daily with advertisements demanding she live up to our culture's paradoxical ideal - enjoying food in overabundance, eating out often and cleaning her plate—while maintaining t … [Read more...]

Prodigal City

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 The bankruptcy of Detroit is a consequence of multi-faceted social problems that defy simple solutions and pat answers. To love the city will require more than creative thinking. When news broke of Detroit’s decision to file for bankruptcy, The Onion dealt with the matter, as it so often does, with sharper insight than any of the news articles my concerned friends and family sent me—“Report: Detroit Bankruptcy Might Transform City Into Some Kind Of Hellish, Depopulated Wastela … [Read more...]

Compassion in the Face of Force

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 For Simone Weil, justice is primarily an act of paying attention, which protects the sacred cry in every human being not to be hurt. "It would seem that man is born a slave and that servitude is his natural condition." So concludes Simone Weil’s Analysis of Oppression. The essay is a study of political history,  but throughout her short life, Weil also encountered human slavery far more immediately. Born in Paris in 1909 to an agnostic French-Jewish middle-class family, she was, i … [Read more...]

A Utopian and an Acadian

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I come from Colorado Springs, a conservative town.  I go to school at a liberal law school in the northeast.  As such, I get swamped with political rhetoric from the left and right, and much of it is seething. Like those around me, I often fall into the trap of partisanship. The self-congratulation that comes from condemning a political rival is delicious, but it has consequences, the worst of which is my assumption about people on the other side.  I think of them not merely as stupid and ig … [Read more...]

Short-term Missions, Long-term Places

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The Gospel Coalition recently posted an article by Darren Carlson entitled “Why You Should Consider Cancelling Your Short-Term Missions Trips.” Carlson argues that many short-term mission trips are centered around making the “senders” feel good about serving—while actually failing to benefit the recipients and even sometimes causing more harm than good. He gives several concrete examples of this, such as,“houses in Latin America that have been painted 20 times by 20 different short-term teams … [Read more...]

Politics and the Bible as Narrative

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From Oliver O’Donovan’s The Desire of the Nations:If political theologians are to treat ancient Israel’s political tradition as normative, they must observe the discipline of treating it as history. They may not plunder the Old Testament as though it were so much raw material to be consumed, in any order and in any variety of proportions, in the manufacture of their own theological artefact. They are dealing with a disclosure which took form in a succession of political developments, each o … [Read more...]


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