There is a great difference in excellency, usefulness, and comfort between people of clear, digested knowledge, and confused, undigested apprehensions. -Richard Baxter

Archive for the human condition

David Foster Wallace: words of life from a man dead too soon

Several of you asked for the article in full to which I referred this morning from David Foster Wallace.

Here you are, from the Wall Street Journal of Sept 19 of this year.

A member of our church (and our neighbor here in the Cliff!) passed the article  along to me.  In addition to Wallace’s winsome prose, his insight into the human condition is remarkable.  He seemed to understand so much, and yet seemed to disallow the possibility that the very means by which we are liberated from the idolatries to which we are so prone does not exist in us naturally.

state of the economy for dummies

the flood of commentary on the state of the American economy in recent weeks can lead one to believe thatwe’re talking about another Enron-kind-of-complicated matter here. The folks at Between Two Worlds have done us the favor of pointing us to a brief on this labyrinthine issue.

To understand the financial matters afoot is not merely a matter for economists or pundits. What’s happening in the highest echelons of commerce and government is an issue worth the consideration of Christians, too. Read the rest of this entry »

technology and its potential depredations on the soul

Vern Poythress:

A capable cell phone today has more computing power than the computer that took the Apollo astronauts to the moon. It gives instant access not only to your friends’ voices but to all the information on the internet. Are you keeping up or falling behind in the race for the latest electronic fashions? Read the rest of this entry »

staying untied

should you ever marry?  isn’t it too much of a minefield?  haven’t we seen enough relational and familial carnage to look at marriage with deep suspicion?

Mike Bullmore has a few things to say on the matter. It’s one sermon in a series found here.

the beautiful counter-intuitiveness of the gospel

the most expensive expression of forgiveness continues to put and end to a devastating cycle of violence and retribution.  Where does one gather the resources to be able to forgive without simply denying the pain of what’s been lost?  Read here.

let our forbear in the faith bear his soul to you this summer

Cynthia Nielsen is leading a summer study on St. Augustine’s Confessions on tuesday nights.  Cynthia brings, to put it mildly, a depth of insight into our forbear in the faith.  Click here if you’d like more information on the study.

pray for the Kolbs

a few of you may remember Seth and Kristen (nee Seckinger) Kolb.  They live in Colombia, where Seth works for the State Department; and they have a son, Jackson, who is 9 months old.  This week they learned Jackson has what may very well be a malignant tumor above his knee.

They are being med-e-vac’d back to Houston for urgent treatment.  

Whether you know them or not, I’m sure they’d be appreciative of your prayers for them and little Jackson.

Holy Week Meditation, Maundy Thursday, 2008

Holy Week Meditation, Maundy Thursday, 2008

Isaiah 53:7-9

Is. 53:7    He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth; like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent, so he opened not his mouth. 8 By oppression and judgment he was taken away; and as for his generation, who considered that he was cut off out of the land of the living, stricken for the transgression of my people? 9 And they made his grave with the wicked and with a rich man in his death, although he had done no violence, and there was no deceit in his mouth.

It’s been said that the Scriptures reveal something far more arresting than mere propositions and principles.  They put forth a drama-a drama of redemption. Read the rest of this entry »

let the succinctness–amorous or angst-ridden–fly

Valentine’s Day is Thursday and provides a forum, interestingly, for two very different kinds of expressions: the amorous and the angst-ridden.

So Despair.com (whose CEO claims membership in our Body) has dutifully provided a little platform for whichever kind of expression you’d prefer to share in response to the approach of Valentine’s Day.

Here’s one of the angst-ridden kind:


The contest is on: go to the link above and create your succinct expression, right-click the picture to save it, and then forward it to us. We’ll publish some of the cleverest, with the most clever receiving some sort of fitting prize. (you can submit entries of the amorous or the angst-ridden–in a three-heart, or just the one-heart display; we’ll award a prize in each category)

Submit as many entries as you’d like. Contest ends Thursday at 5pm. A distinguished panel of judges (your servant-leadership team) will adjudicate.

Let your succinctness–amorous or angst-ridden–fly!

resolutions to die trying to live by

Death, it’s been said, is our last enemy. Though it befalls all men, it ought not ever been regarded as a purely natural event. We do not ever, as a professor I had once said, “make friends” with death. We may come to terms with it, acknowledge its reality and inevitability, learn to adjust to its demands–but never are we to smile at death, to welcome it as a benign, fortuitous thing, except in terms of what follows that death. The relief from suffering that death culminates in is a grace, but death, per se, is no cordial bedfellow. Why else would Jesus have been not merely sorrowful at Lazarus’ death, but, as the text says, indignant at its continued reality? Read the rest of this entry »