For a subject so closely associated with pure, objective reason, mathematics inspires a surprising amount of emotion. For those who have experienced math as an inscrutable collection of symbols and rules, the most common emotions may be fear, loathing, or anxiety. For others, however, math inspires passion, even love.
We believe that Christ has called us to look for him in the difficult places—places that challenge us. This is how we hope to grow into maturity as Christians, as citizens, and as people who care about the common good of fellowship with God and neighbor.
I sometimes dream about what it would look like if we could collectively shift from a scarcity/abundance mindset to one that recognizes enough. I don’t know how we can make that shift as a society, unless it is as a change that starts with individuals and families, slowly building to a critical mass.
If I observe that it’s sunny outside, but I know that it’s winter and I see snow on the ground, I will likely conclude that it’s cold out and put on my coat before I walk out the door. If I see my son with chocolate on his lips and cookie crumbs on the counter, I might conclude that he probably snuck a cookie from the cookie jar.
With all the brokenness in the world, is the study of the mathematical aspects of Creation worthwhile? Are we right to pursue the beauty of pure mathematics, or should we focus our energy on studying "practical"' mathematical concepts which have immediate, obvious application to solving the world’s pressing problems?
Mathematics ought to be for everyone, not just for mathematicians, scientists, and engineers. Mathematics is not only about application; it is part of the created world. Too many are missing out on the fun, and that’s where play comes in.