July 10, 2015

“Dismantling the Facade of Authentic Vulnerability ,” Chris Martin I went to a small Christian liberal arts school, so in the dorms or in school-established small groups, it seemed spiritually cool if you talked about “authenticity,” “vulnerability,” and a host of other such “-ity” words. Maybe you experienced something like this in college—you definitely did if you attended a Christian one. At my school, “intentional community” was as important as academics, so naturally, there was plenty of talk like this. The… Read more

July 8, 2015

Will Saletan, a writer for Slate, posted this to Twitter this afternoon. My son was marked down 5 percent on a high school health test because he chose this "incorrect" definition of family. pic.twitter.com/TnisIK51Mm— Will Saletan (@saletan) July 8, 2015 Just so we’re clear: A state sponsored entity (school) used its punitive measures (grades) to enforce a particular definition of “family” on its students. Now you might think “enforce” is too strong a word there. After all, it’s not like… Read more

July 7, 2015

Let’s contemplate one of the most widespread and most unfortunate phrases of recent times: The “adult” entertainment industry. When I say adult entertainment, the vast majority of you know exactly what I mean—pornography. If you did a search for that term (don’t), 99% of your hits would come up pornographic. In our cultural lexicon, the use of “adult” as an adjective almost always signifies sexual explicitness or erotica: “Adult” books, “adult” films, “adult” events, etc, ad nauseum. Purveyors of the… Read more

July 6, 2015

The Soul of the World, Roger Scruton A friend and former professor introduced me to philosopher Roger Scruton recently. This is the second Scruton book I’m going through after “How to Be a Conservative” (which I highly recommend). “The Soul of the World” can be dense philosophy at times, particularly when Scruton is discussing the ontology of Kant. But the upshot of the entire work is that the world we live in can’t simply be reduced to materialistic processes. Reading erudite… Read more

June 30, 2015

The phrase “culture war” is a little bit like the word “abortion.” Both terms exist to obscure and soften what they really mean. Everyone knows that abortion means the termination of unborn life, yet the term itself is a neutral one, having no special lexical connection to fetal life or even the medical profession. The reality behind the word is muddled by the word itself; thus, voters can feel in the word “abortion” a valuable human right of sexual autonomy that… Read more

June 27, 2015

It was to very few’s surprise that the Supreme Court ruled 5-4 on Friday to find a Constitutional right to same-sex marriage. Most politicos and commentators on both sides of the marriage debate predicted that if the issue were brought to the court during the present administration, the decision would be in favor. The relative lack of shock and awe doesn’t mean much, of course (except for those who need to sell newspapers or pageviews). But one thing it does… Read more

June 23, 2015

One of the highest privileges of being a pastor’s kid is seeing, over the course of two decades, the inner life and thought of a ministry family in a way that no other eyes can possibly see. I’m grateful to be a “PK” for many reasons, but chief among them is the empathy and grace for those in ministry (surely not enough, though) that come from spending many years watching genuine love meet genuine care in what is almost certainly… Read more

June 19, 2015

The horrific and terroristic murder of 9 black Americans in Charlestown, South Carolina,  while they worshiped at one of the oldest African-American congregations in the United States has become the main news story of the week, rightfully. The suspect, who is in custody, is alleged to have admitted that he came to the church “to kill black people” and to “start another civil war” about race. There’s no question in my mind given the accused killer’s sentiments that this was… Read more

June 19, 2015

Recently at First Things, Matthew Block pondered the remarkable decline, both in market share and in overall quality, of the contemporary Christian music industry. Pivoting off a wonderfully named piece by Tyler Huckabee, Block offers his own analysis as to why CCM is barely a shrivel of its 90s glory: As Huckabee and those he quotes rightly note, the CCM industry of today seems much less diverse than it was when it was at its peak. As market conditions grew… Read more

June 13, 2015

My extended absence from the blog has come to an end. Emily and I arrived back in Kentucky from our Florida honeymoon as husband and wife on Monday. I’m still trying to wrap my head around the pace of it all; the gap between the wedding day and the end of the honeymoon feels both eternal and nonexistent. In the span of 24 hours I made the longest lasting promise and the most solemn oath I will take this side… Read more

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