Things Glen Found Interesting, Volume 397

On Fridays I share articles/resources about broad cultural, societal and theological issues. Be sure to see the explanation and disclaimers at the bottom. I welcome your suggestions. If you read something fascinating please pass it my way.

This is volume 397, which is a prime number.

Things Glen Found Interesting

  1. Stanford Needs Easter (Isabella Grieppe & Diego Garcia-Camargo, Stanford Review): “So, instead of sheepishly following the cultural status quo, consider the possibility that there is more to our lives than our material reality. Consider the existential possibility that the God of the universe sent His only Son because of His Love for you; that on this day He took upon himself the brokenness of this world in a tortuous death for you; and that He conquered death to offer you hope and purpose in Loving and serving Him by Loving and serving others.”
  2. The Limits of Forgiveness (Elizabeth Bruenig, The Point Magazine): “In a forum we both participated in for the Boston Review, University of Chicago philosopher Agnes Callard once observed that if a person is wronged and therefore made angry at another person, there’s no logical reason for that anger to be extinguished, ever. Sure, it may run its course, or the angry individual may become bored with the emotion or simply elect to drop it, but there is no logical reason, once the anger is felt at the initial offense, that one should ever stop feeling angry—even once one has avenged oneself.”
    • Well worth your time.
  3. NASA Astronaut Asks for Prayer for Moon Mission (Daniel Silliman, Christianity Today): “The last time he was in space, Glover said, he really felt closer to God. Not because he was above the sky but because, as James 4:8 says, when you submit yourself to God and come near to God, God comes near to you. Reading the Bible in space was a powerful experience. Glover remembers being in weightlessness in his quarters on the International Space Station and reading Philippians 4. Some of the words were so familiar to him, like verse 13, which says in his New King James Version, ‘I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.’ But there were other passages he felt like he was seeing for the first time. Like in verse 12, where Paul writes, ‘I have learned both to be full and to be hungry.’ Glover had never noticed that before. It expressed exactly how he felt about himself and his training and mission.”
  4. With some of my fellow Stanford Law students, there’s no room for argument (Tess Winston, Washington Post): “I often think of one of my first-year professors, who was appalled by these students’ stigmatizing of the prosecutorial role. He asked one: Given that prosecutors decide whether and what charges to bring against a defendant, isn’t it preferable for well-qualified people to fill the role? Without missing a beat, the student responded: No, being a prosecutor is simply evil.”
    • I have unlocked the paywall on this one. The author is a third year law school student at SLS.
  5. Do Your Political Beliefs Affect Your Parenting? (Leonard Sax, Institute for Family Studies): “A mom brought her six-year-old daughter into the office with a fever and a sore throat. I asked the little girl to open her mouth and say ‘Ah.’ She shook her head and clenched her mouth shut. ‘Mom, it looks like I’m going to need your help here,’ I said. ‘Could you please ask your daughter to open her mouth and say ‘Ah’?’ Mom arched her eyebrows and replied, ‘Her body, her choice.’ Wow. This mom was invoking the ‘My body, my choice’ slogan of abortion-rights activists to defend her 6‑year-old daughter’s refusal to let me, the doctor, look at her daughter’s throat. I have been a family doctor for nearly 34 years. Until recently, I saw no connection between politics and parenting.”
    • Really interesting. Also accurate, if my experience is any guide. There is a marked difference in the parenting philosophies people hold in the Bay Area based upon their politics.
  6. I just finished The Witch Trials of J.K. Rowling podcast and I recommend it. The seven episodes were all engaging and the author comes at everything from a unique perspective. The episodes are around an hour long.
  7. Before Politics, There’s the World (Freddie deBoer, Substack): “this piece on adoption by Larissa MacFarquhar in the New Yorker. It is, I think, a pitch-perfect example of the contemporary tendency to simply wish away any sort of necessity other than moral or political necessity. The essay is a relentless chronicle of all of the ills of adoption, why adoption is alienating and traumatic for the adopted child, how adoption scars adoptees for life, divides them from their cultures, leaves the without an identity…. Yet what MacFarquhar says in parentheses and half-sentences is the most important point of all — that adoption is inherently a response to the unavoidable tragedies of human life, a necessarily imperfect solution to very real and persistent problems.… Almost entirely undiscussed is the fact that the world houses both children who need homes and loving and nurturing adults with homes to share. That’s why adoption exists. That’s always been why adoption exists. Kids need parents and parents need kids. No facile trauma narrative can change that basic arithmetic.”
    • deBoer is usually a good essayist and he outdoes himself in this one.

Less Serious Things Which Also Interested/Amused Glen

Things Glen Found Interesting A While Ago

Every week I’ll highlight an older link still worth your consideration. This week we have Secularization and the Tribulations of the American Working-Class (Tyler Cowen, Marginal Revolution): “I praise the scholarship and courage of Brian N. Wheaton.” Along with the related: Getting Past the Gatekeepers (J. Budziszewski, personal blog): “Your gatekeepers want you to write a book more like the one they would have written. If you do make revisions, make them in such a way that the book becomes not less your own, but even more your own. That’s not pride. If God condescends to allow certain insights to the historians on your board, how wonderful! Let them write about them! Read and learn from them! But if He condescends to allow certain other insights to you, you should write about yours, not theirs.” The author is a professor of politics and philosophy at UT Austin. From volume 276.

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In the time of King David, the tribe of Issachar produced shrewd warriors “who understood the times and knew what Israel should do” (1 Chron 12:32). In a similar way, we need to become wise people whose faith interacts with the world. I pray this email gives you greater insight, so that you may continue the tradition of Issachar.


Chi Alpha is not a partisan organization. To paraphrase another minister: we are not about the donkey’s agenda and we are not about the elephant’s agenda — we are about the Lamb’s agenda. Having said that, I read widely (in part because I believe we should aspire to pass the ideological Turing test and in part because I do not believe I can fairly say “I agree” or “I disagree” until I can say “I understand”) and may at times share articles that have a strong partisan bias simply because I find the article stimulating. The upshot: you should not assume I agree with everything an author says in an article I mention, much less things the author has said in other articles (although if I strongly disagree with something in the article I’ll usually mention it). And to the extent you can discern my opinions, please understand that they are my own and not necessarily those of Chi Alpha or any other organization I may be perceived to represent. Also, remember that I’m not reporting news — I’m giving you a selection of things I found interesting. There’s a lot happening in the world that’s not making an appearance here because I haven’t found stimulating articles written about it. If this was forwarded to you and you want to receive future emails, sign up here. You can also view the archives.

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