- - Saturday, December 3, 2016

(1) With rifle and bibliography: General Mattis on professional reading

Mattis: ….The problem with being too busy to read is that you learn by experience (or by your men’s experience), i.e. the hard way. By reading, you learn through others’ experiences, generally a better way to do business, especially in our line of work where the consequences of incompetence are so final for young men.

Thanks to my reading, I have never been caught flat-footed by any situation, never at a loss for how any problem has been addressed (successfully or unsuccessfully) before. It doesn’t give me all the answers, but it lights what is often a dark path ahead.

(2) Os Guinness: There Is Something Wrong with the Salt and Light

Guinness recommends several tasks for the church to undertake.

One of the more urgent tasks is contributing to the future. Today there are “visions of tomorrow like nothing humanity has ever seen,” such as the singularity, artificial intelligence, trans-humanism, and the social construction of gender. We can’t say Jesus is the answer without addressing the “grand philosophical, ethical, medical, scientific challenges” places like Silicon Valley are leading the world in answering.

As Christians, we actually have a lot to say about the future. The narrative of Scripture does not stop with John 3:16. We are called to build Christ’s kingdom on Earth, and he promises he will return to bring about its completion. We are given gifts and talents to use in our economy, to fight the effects of sin, and help bring about human flourishing.

We have a hope for the future those separated from God can never have. That is the vision for the future we ought to be speaking into our world. Whelchel’s answer to the question of engaging our culture was, “Yes. The Bible calls Christians to engage, redeem, and restore culture. This is at the very heart of the cultural mandate.”

Let us not forget that we are called to actively engage the world around us, lest the salt loses its saltiness.

(3) Chip and Joanna Gaines show the culture wars aren’t fought in D.C., but on TV |The Washington Post

Chip and Joanna Gaines, the smiley, shiplap-loving couple at the center of HGTV’s “Fixer Upper,” have hit another milestone in their reality TV careers.

Days after their latest season premiere broke records on cable, and a few weeks after their first book topped the New York Times bestseller list, online outlets challenged their evangelical church’s stance against same-sex marriage.

As the proud Baylor University grads go from everyday people to household names, they join a cast of reality TV families known — and scrutinized — for the values they represent. The discussions around the Gaineses and their beliefs reveal how great a role reality TV plays in how Americans think about marriage, family and sexuality.


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