Archive - January, 2012

Komen Foundation Drops Planned Parenthood

Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation, a leading charity for breast cancer, announced the termination of its partnership with Planned Parenthood in prevention screenings and education.  Their reasoning, according to a statement from Komen’s spokeswoman Leslie Aun, is that Komen refuses to partner with organizations under investigation by local, state or federal authorities.

Pro-life groups like Americans United for Life praised the decision, which will drain funding for the nation’s largest abortion provider (and draw further attention to the ongoing investigation).

 

The Great Unbundling of the University

Alan Jacobs, Clyde S. Kilby Professor of English at Wheaton College, writes in The Atlantic on the growing phenomenon of online education, calling it “The Great Unbundling of the University.” An excerpt:

For a long time now, universities have flourished by offering a bundled package of knowledge and credentialing. People attended university in order to learn stuff that they couldn’t learn elsewhere — because the experts weren’t elsewhere — and to be certified by those experts as having actually learned said stuff. The bundle has been a culturally powerful one.

But now: unbundling. Clearly, many universities have come, or are coming, to the conclusion that their primary product is the credentialing, and that they can give knowledge away either as a public service or as brand consolidation (choose your interpretation according to your level of cynicism).

Read the rest.

John Piper – The Pleasures of God

Today, Multnomah releases a revised edition of one of John Piper’s most significant books, The Pleasures of God. An excerpt:

There is only one fountain of lasting joy – the overflowing gladness of God in God. Without beginning and without ending, without source and without cause, without help or assistance, the spring is eternally self-replenishing. From this unceasing fountain of joy flow all grace and all joy in the universe – and all the rest of the book. Let everyone who is thirsty come (p. 45).

Multnomah is simultaneously releasing a DVD of Pastor Piper teaching on themes from The Pleasures of God.  The DVD is divided into ten sessions, and suitable for Sunday School or small group usage.

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Why You Should Seek to be a Great Manager

Marcus Buckingham, from First, Break All the Rules: What the World’s Greatest Managers Do Differently:

Our research yielded many discovers, but the most powerful was this: Talented employees need great managers.

The talented employee may join a company because of its charismatic leaders, its generous benefits, and its world-class training programs, but how long that employee stays and how productive he is while he is there is determined by his relationship with his immediate supervisor.

When talented employees work for mediocre managers, they either leave or stagnate. Now the latter might include high levels of productivity outside the organization (new initiatives kindled “after hours,” moonlighting opportunities, etc.), but the organization with the mediocre manager is still, ultimately, the loser on such occasions.

HT: Matt Perman

 

Letter from Birmingham Jail

Biographer Stephen Oates (Let The Trumpet Sound) called The Letter from Birmingham Jail “the most eloquent and learned expression of the goals and philosophy of the nonviolent movement ever written.”  The speech illustrates the principle of “just” and “unjust” laws:

“…there are just laws, and there are unjust laws. I would agree with St. Augustine that “An unjust law is no law at all.” Now, what is the difference between the two? How does one determine when a law is just or unjust? A just law is a man-made code that squares with the moral law, or the law of God. An unjust law is a code that is out of harmony with the moral law. To put it in the terms of St. Thomas Aquinas, an unjust law is a human law that is not rooted in eternal and natural law. Any law that uplifts human personality is just. Any law that degrades human personality is unjust. All segregation statutes are unjust because segregation distorts the soul and damages the personality. It gives the segregator a false sense of superiority and the segregated a false sense of inferiority.”

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John Piper: I was a Full-Blooded Racist

John Piper’s recent book, Bloodlines, chronicles his upbringing in the segregated south and how his racist views were ultimately rectified.

 

Today, Desiring God and Crossway have made Bloodlines available as a free PDF download.

Martin Luther King Jr. Had a Dream

Here is the full video of what is widely regarded as one of the great speeches of the twentieth century. If you’ve never heard or read it, I encourage you to do so. The content and delivery are equally masterful, full of active verbs and vivid images. Note the string of metaphors, powerfully engaging the listener:

The full text of the speech is below:

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Thriving at College among the “Best of Best in 2011” (YouthWorker Journal)

I was deeply encouraged to be sent the notification that YouthWorker Journal, a popular bi-monthly magazine serving youth ministries for over 20 years, has named Thriving at College one of the “Best of Best in 2011.”

“Well done” doesn’t scratch the surface of how good this book is. It’s explicitly Christian in the purest sense, enabling its truths to speak to non-Christians. Although this resource is written for emerging adults, it’s a valuable read for anyone wanting to consider every area of life with a sound biblical lens. My best summary of Alex Chediak’s brilliant work here is simply, “Thanks.” – TONY MYLES – Author, Ministry Coach, Lead Pastor, Connection Church, Medina, Ohio

Thanks, Pastor Myles and YouthWorker Journal.

Update:  The text of Pastor Myles’ review is available online

Marvin Olasky on College and Non-College Options

Some good thoughts from Marvin Olasky on the college experience and the potential “college bubble.” For many, college is a highly educational, even transformative, experience–one that pays significant dividends for years to come, professionally and otherwise. I want it to be that for those who go, which is why I wrote Thriving at College.

Those who pursue college should do so with professors who care deeply about actually educating them, not just stamping a grade so they can get back to their real interests. Those who don’t should pursue fruitfulness elsewhere.

HT: Chris Haugen

Does God Care Whether Tim Tebow Wins on Saturday?

Owen Strachan, in the pages of The Atlantic, gives an outstanding answer to the question burning in all our minds: Does God Care Whether Tim Tebow Wins on Saturday?. An excerpt:

But what happens when Tebow loses?……

This is easier than your average late-night philosophical chat in the college lounge might make it seem. The Bible teaches that no believer is assured an easy road. In other words, contrary to what health-and-wealth teachers like Joel Osteen say (to the tune of massive earnings), God nowhere promises to unendingly bless his people in worldly terms. On the contrary, it seems from biblical texts like Hebrews 11:35-38 that Christians will know considerable suffering in this world…..

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