Reading the Headlines through a Gospel Worldview: October 26, 2020
It is imperative we remind ourselves of the true truth: God is sovereign, God is great and God is good. God is not surprised by anything that is happening in the world today and God is not searching around for a plan B. God is God and God has got this. Yes, even the big THIS of 2020 Covid/US election/and all the other chaos swirling around. This is the not the worst things have ever been and there’s no going back to some “good ole days” that were only relatively good for a relative few. Forget that. We’re going forward into grace. We’re pressing the full force of our lives into the advancement of God’s Kingdom purposes in this generation. Because this the day God ordained for US to live – as His children, agents of His grace, ambassadors of His Kingdom, speakers of the Truth. So, let’s get after it!
Here are the headlines that caught my eye over the past several days:
As you read this consider the social location and historic social capital of the individuals and institutions involved. How did a community become so fractured? Is the church ever beyond healing? Does the fear of the other ever go away? Can trust be built and rebuilt? She said she was truly sorry, but this Gainesville (Georgia) teen is sentenced to four years for plotting to kill members of the Bethel AME church in her community.
The reinvention of the family continues…the headline in the Huff Post reads: I love living with my best friend so I bought a house with her and her husband. The heterosexual couple in this story are not having children and the lesbian author has grown children from a prior marriage. It’s complex. It’s not the norm. They admit that – but the author turns a corner and suggests that although she is unwilling to conform to existing norms, she thinks her formula should become normative for others. The subhead of the article captures it here: “Non-related adults (and mothers at that) in their 30s and 40s living together by choice isn’t the norm, but I think it should be.”
NASA’s OSIRIS-REx samples asteroid that could have secrets origin of life on earth from the Houston Chronicle. Read this and ask yourself the prior question: where did the materials come from? What or who is the origin of the origin?
Life issues are also issues of death and in a culture that imagines it can redefine everything, dealing with death in the pandemic has come to the fore. We’ve talked before about Death Doulos and Death Cafe’s, but I’ll admit that laying claim to expertise in something called “death wellness” caught even me by surprise. Michael Hebb, a death wellness expert, wants people to plan for their end from Religion News.
There’s a lot of talk this time of year. New Spirits Rise in old Repurposed Churches in the New York Times (subscription required)
If you’ve ever driven across America you know there’s a LOT of wide open, uninhabited space. You may not want to live there but that doesn’t mean it wouldn’t make a great place to live. So how many Americans is enough? How many is too many? How do we know what’s optimal? Well, someone has been giving that a lot of thought. Check out Providence Mag’s Be Fruitful and Multiply: a review of Yglesias’ One Billion Americans.
Where do you see a challenge today that breaks your heart? Does it also break the heart of God? Might it be your mission? If so, who do you know – anywhere in the world – what do you do, right here at home – and how might you leverage your spheres of influence in one to change the reality for someone else? This is a story about a Michelen chef in the U.S. feeding millions of people in India.
Okay, yes, there’s an election…so here are a few political headlines…
Trump, Biden and Religion in American Politics from First Things
The U.S. electorate by the numbers from Pew Research. Which leads to the realization that White Christian America is literally disappearing. Religion News recognizes there’s a problem with that. What happens with the social safety net White Christian American is built is gone? Who is going to pick up the slack when disaster strikes?