The Place of Our Affection

At Art House America, a marvelous essay from Andi Ashworth about home, and finding it in your own: During this last round of talks we decided to take a weekend and try out what it might be like to live closer to the city, able to walk to coffee shops, restaurants, and even to work. [Read More...]

Hunting Complexity

Over at The Curator, Seth Morgan is hunting complexity: What lies beyond us, creeping at the edge of our understanding—the infinite—is not just space, not just the expanse of time. It is complexity. And it is everywhere apparent. The more you look, the more there is. The deeper you go, the deeper it is. It may [Read More...]

Why Christians Should Read Secular Novels

At her blog, Amy Julia Becker looks at why Christians ought to read non-Christian novels: In spending time with these fictional people, Lamb succeeded in humanizing individuals who might otherwise have remained a “type” –whether the lesbian artist, the sexual predator, the liberal social activist, or the evangelical from Texas. And in feeling some degree [Read More...]

God . . . on TV?

There’s always a few people who think that God doesn’t show up on TV at all – but lately he’s everywhere, and especially, it turns out, on dark TV dramas. (Who would have guessed it?) Here’s The AV Club (definitely not a Christian source) pointing this out: What makes the emergence of faith and religion as [Read More...]

Pubs, Coffeehouses, and Democracy

In the Center for Public Justice’s Capitol Commentary, Matthew Kaemingk looks at the importance of pubs and coffeehouses for democracy and community: Democratic theorists lament that too many Americans now exclusively receive their political news and analysis through ideologically narrow sources. As Americans continue to construct tighter and tighter ideological echo chambers for themselves, many wonder how [Read More...]

The Exclusion of “Belle”

Maybe you saw the new costume drama Belle, which looks at issues of race and class during the time just before slavery was abolished in Great Britain. But what you might have missed (I certainly did) was how much the filmmakers left out – especially about the real abolitionists, and how they were motivated by faith: Let’s [Read More...]

Want to Live Long and Prosper? Have a Purpose for Your Life

Poppy-Mark-3

Borrowing a phrase from Star Trek’s Vulcans, I would ask: Do you want to live long and prosper? If your answer is “yes,” then you’d do well to pay attention to new research on flourishing in old age. Paula Span, in her New York Times article, “Living on Purpose,” summarizes recent research that connects long [Read More...]

What Gets Lost When Handwriting Declines?

Here’s an interesting question: what’s lost as handwriting declines in our increasingly digital age? But psychologists and neuroscientists say it is far too soon to declare handwriting a relic of the past. New evidence suggests that the links between handwriting and broader educational development run deep. Children not only learn to read more quickly when [Read More...]

Can Corporate Profits Help Communities Thrive?

As a professor at a Christian college, I often encounter students who are wondering if they need to start a nonprofit or ministry in order to do good in the world. They’re worried that working at or starting a for-profit enterprise is really just a way to make money, but won’t make a difference in [Read More...]

When Your Dream Gets Put on Hold

Over at The High Calling, Charity Singleton Craig writes about what we can learn from when Paul’s plans got put on hold: In my life, seeing my talents and dreams line up has felt more like Paul’s desire to go to Spain and preach the gospel where it hadn’t already been announced. For years he [Read More...]

Elliot Rodger’s Unattainable Good Life

Following the tragedy in California last week, Alan Noble wrote about “the unattainable good life of Elliot Rodger” over at Christ & Pop Culture: In his final video, Elliot rants about how the crime he’s about to commit is right and good because he was denied the Good Life that other people got to experience. His [Read More...]

Ascension and Vocation

Over at the Washington Institute, Laura Merzig Fabrycky writes about Christ’s ascension, and what it means for our understanding of our vocation: So beyond being a bit of biblical trivia that we might affirm as true, what does Christ’s ascension have to do with my waking up, pouring the morning’s coffee, checking email, and heading out [Read More...]

Keep the Friends Who Wound You

John Sowers wrote a wise article over at the Storyline Blog about keeping the friends who are willing to wound you: Proverbs 27:6 says, “Wounds from a friend are better than kisses from an enemy.” To hear my writing was like an IKEA product stung a little. But Kari was right. It hurt, but it [Read More...]

Celebrating Life’s Nitty-Gritty

Over at Good Letters, Peggy Rosenthal looks at the poetry of Brazilian poet Adelia Prado: I would like to feel, with Prado, that everything — yes everything — is beautiful, is holy, because it is God’s creation. Oh, I say I believe this, and I do believe it. But do I truly live it? I whine when the weather [Read More...]

Thinking About Anxiety and Depression

Over at QIdeas, this week’s question: “is anxiety and depression our new normal?” Some researchers say that 1 in 4 women are on antidepressants, and there’s a lot of talk about what causes this uptick (or if there even is an uptick) in the occurrence of anxiety and depression. There are four articles and a [Read More...]

On Crises and Middles

Ever feel “fair-to-middling”? In The Curator, L.L. Barkat ruminates on “middles”: Middle places can be unsettling. I wrote a whole novella I now look upon as a “middle” book. I wrote it at the same time I was fiddling with beginnings. And, oddly enough, I started the novella with the words, “The End.” The End is a logical place [Read More...]


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