Category Archives: Christian Life

The War on Poverty and Income Inequality: Between Downtown and the Dump

by Kirk Spencer In the summer of 2001, I visited the Philippines. My first day in Manila was spent with the children that roam the streets and tin shanties, along the banks of muddy drainage channels. Their faces were dirty and their hair streaked red-blond from vitamin deficiencies. Though they were very poor, they were friendly and playful. They gathered round me asking questions, wanting to know about me, wanting … Continue reading

Aristotle, Bonhoeffer, and Christian Community

by Winston Hottman To explain what is unique about human community, Aristotle distinguishes between speech and voice: Speech is something different from voice, which is possessed by other animals also and used by them to express pain or pleasure; for their nature does indeed enable them not only to feel pleasure and pain but to communicate these feelings to each other. Speech, on the other hand serves to indicate what … Continue reading

From Surviving to Thriving

By Winston Hottman What can you do to fight poverty in your community? In a recent article Jennifer Marshall, director of domestic policy at the Heritage Foundation, explains how the gospel creates the framework for a holistic approach to addressing the problem, an approach that looks beyond handouts to full human flourishing: Truly effective compassion means striving for human flourishing and seeking the conditions that make it possible. The good … Continue reading

Life (Without God) is Precarious

by Joe Wooddell Recently, a cold snap engulfed the United States and reminded me how delicate our prosperity really is. One cold, icy night can cause tree branches to take down power lines, pipes in our homes to burst, roads to become hazardous, and crops to fail (in turn driving up food prices). Preppers and planners tell us that grocery stores begin running out after three days with no trucks … Continue reading

The Deadly Disease of Affluenza

by Kirk Spencer If influenza is a disease of the respiratory system, then affluenza is a disease of the socio-economic system.[1] It begins with bounding ambition which progresses through a series of symptoms, including conspicuous consumption, wasteful spending, excessive debt, and systemic anxiety.[2] In its advanced stages, those afflicted with affluenza exhibit extreme idleness, acute narcissism and a complete loss of sympathy.[3] It is highly contagious and is socially transmitted … Continue reading

The Undaunted Message of Freedom

by Brandon Smith. This was originally posted at Desiring God. I think, therefore I am. Ren Descartes penned this popular line in his 1637 treatise, Discourse on the Method, and its a good summary of the book itself. Heralding the importance of scientific discoveries and the necessity of doubting ones own view of the world, Descartes work is often considered the first domino to fall in what is now called … Continue reading

Saved from Hell or Sin?

by Josh Crutchfield, Pastor of FBC Trenton, Texas In 1974, Pastor Estus W. Pirkle created a film entitled The Burning Hell. This film was circulated throughout many churches in the U.S. and around the world, with the sole purpose of scaring people out of Hell. In this movie, Pastor Pirkle sought to portray the horrifying realities of Hell so that people would turn to Jesus and be saved from such … Continue reading

Somewhere Softer and Safer

by Kirk Spencer The other night, I was checking doors before I went to bed. All the doors were locked and the lights were off. I made my way through the dark house, to each bedroom to check on my kids, to stand in the doorway, to walk to their side, stand over them and catch a glimpse of that most peaceful thing in all the worlda childs face in … Continue reading

Deaf Choir

by Kirk Spencer My neighbor is deaf and she is one of the sweetest people I know. Ive known her now for almost thirty years. She has lived her life in absolute silence. And I have seen her face other hardships with her particular crooked smile and nodding of acceptance. Ive learned, when speaking, to always face her and exaggerate the movement of my mouth. In her perpetual silence, she … Continue reading

Squirrelly World

*Posted by Kirk Spencer Ive been neglecting my yard work because Ive been far too busy with my work work. As of late, I have been trying to motivate myself to get out there and make up for lost time. However, the insistent necessity of other more necessary things has precluded it. The city changed all that. So, recently, I have been spending a lot of time outside, catching up … Continue reading