“You hypocrites!” says Christ in Calvin Seerveld’s paraphrase of Matthew 23:24, “You strain gnats out of your wine but swallow the American, suburban way of life whole, like a camel.” Jesus, of course, directed his stinging dart at the Pharisees, but Seerveld applies his to suburban Americans, and probably more specifically, suburban American Christians.
This is how it often feels to work for an institution like the church in 2019. Trends so much larger than myself make my prayers and pastoral work feel meaningless. I’ve been feeling this way about my denomination, the RCA, recently. Each week in our church, we say some version of this refrain: When the person of Jesus Christ is at the center of our lives and our worship, there is space for loving one another in disagreement.
What lessons might we, as Christian stewards of the creation, take from this story of the ozone hole?
The clash between “religious freedom versus LGBT rights” may best be framed as an issue of pluralism: now that our society harbors these opposed views about marriage and sexuality, will—should—the freedom of religion protect the dissenting view?
As more people of all ages take the plunge into online learning, many Christians wonder how to choose quality courses and programs that help them to grow not only in their academic, technical, or professional knowledge, but also in the development of their faith and their practical ability to live as followers of Christ.
Parents and teachers have had to become much more intentional about scheduling in playtime for kids and in some cases, kids are being forced to “go outside and play.” We know that play is good for kids’ mental, emotional, and physical health, but what about for adults?