Archive - December, 2013

Why is Student Loan Debt a Big Issue?

A picture worth a thousand words:

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HT: Nancy Pearcey

Overcoming the World: Ligonier National Conference 2014

The line-up of sessions looks fantastic.

For a foretaste of R.C. Sproul Jr. on suffering and the sovereignty of God, check out this interview.

Being Against Gay Marriage Doesn’t Make You a Homophobe

Great article in The Atlantic by Brandon Ambrosino, a young gay man who supports same-sex marriage but rejects the idea that to oppose gay marriage makes a person anti-gay (i.e., a homophobe). An excerpt:

Disagreement is not the same thing as discrimination. Our language ought to reflect that distinction.

I would argue that an essential feature of the term “homophobia” must include personal animus or malice toward the gay community. Simply having reservations about gay marriage might be anti-gay marriage, but if the reservations are articulated in a respectful way, I see no reason to dismiss the person holding those reservations as anti-gay people. In other words, I think it’s quite possible for marriage-equality opponents to Continue Reading…

Riley Banks (17) – Short Q&A

A couple weeks ago I posted about Riley Banks, a young lady (today just 17, and still in high school) who is making a profound impact in Kenya.  I had a chance to ask her how she got her start.

You’re 17 years old, and you’ve kept pretty busy. How did you come to get so involved with serving in Kenya? 

When I was 13 my Uncle Logan and Aunt Julie were serving in Kenya on a medical mission at Tenwek hospital.  I thought it would be fun to go for a visit, to my surprise my parents thought it would be a great idea too.  I gave up Christmas that year and did some fundraising and off we went!  While I was in Kenya I worked in the neo natal unit of the hospital taking care of the newborns and sick babies.  I got to spend a week at MOSOP Orphanage where I fell in love with the kids and the people of Kenya.  I found a true need just in a pencil as they all shared about a 2 inch pencil to do all their work.  When I go back home I knew I could at least find some pencils.  That’s when Generation Next was started.  To date we have taken over 550 backpacks with school supplies, 1000 hygiene kits for young girls so that they may stay in school.  In June of 2013 I opened my first school called Pamoja where I 50 students that I support and in May of 2014 I will be opening a 60 bed orphanage.

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Ronnie Smith – A Symphony of Scripture Recitation

A symphony of Scripture recitation unlike any you’ve ever heard, from our brother Ronnie Smith who gave his life in the hope that Libyans would hear the greatest message and come to treasure Christ above all things.

HT: @Bloom_Jon

Ronnie Smith – Died for Christ in Libya

Ronnie SmithRonnie Smith went to Benghazi, Libya to teach Chemistry at the International School Benghazi. He’d been there for 18 months when he was gunned down during his morning jog. Jamie Dean of World magazine writes:

A statement on the Austin Stone website said Smith had served on the church’s staff before moving to Libya: “Ronnie and his family moved to Benghazi to teach high school chemistry and to be a blessing to the Libyan people. … Ronnie’s greatest desire was for peace and prosperity in Libya and for the people of Libya to have the joy of knowing God through Christ.”

Read the whole thing.

John Piper also offers this statement because “Ronnie wrote to us at Desiring God last year and told us that one of my messages was significant in leading him and his family to Libya.”

(Photo credit: Associated Press/Photo by Omaima El-Faitori)

Associate Degrees: Bang for Your Education Buck

Someone sent me this neat infographic on the benefits of associate degrees.

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Harvard University and Grade Inflation

Stephen Joel TrachtenbergGreat article from Stephen Joel Trachtenberg, president emeritus at George Washington University, on grade inflation at Harvard, where the median grade given is an A- and the most frequent grade awarded is an A. An excerpt:

Grades serve several purposes. They are a tool that measures a student’s progress in relation to others in a class; they allow financial aid and scholarship committees to assess merit; and they culminate in a 4-year overall performance record in the form of a college transcript. Academic strengths and weaknesses are discovered over a period of time.

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Should You Bring Mom and Dad to the Office?

Fascinating article in the Wall Street Journal on millennials including their parents in the job search process.  An excerpt:

Millennials—people born between 1981 and the early 2000s—are much closer to their parents than previous generations, and they have gained a reputation for being coddled by so-called helicopter parents, say researchers who study Millennials. But when they started joining the workforce in the early 2000s, managers balked at parents getting involved in their kids’ workplace struggles or job searches.

That was then. Now, some firms have begun embracing parental involvement and using it to attract and hold onto talent and boost employee morale.

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