1. “The Evolution of David Brooks” by Marc Fisher
I enjoy Brooks quite a bit, and I appreciate the shifts in his columns as of late. His interest in matters of morality and spirituality is a welcome transition in the public square. In this interview he talks about his “hunger,” and its development in both his personal life and in his writing.
2. “On John Updike and Eternity” by Alex Beam
This is a sad and beautiful reflective piece in which both Updike and author Beam express their desire and fear to believe. Updike is one of those great and insightful writers whose relationship to religion is … complicated, and yet who, it seems, desperately wanted to believe to have “full faith.”
3. “How Trump Happened: The Wages of Fear and the Brave Way Forward” by Alan Noble
This is such a good piece that reflects on how we got to the place we did where Donald Trump is an actual contender for the GOP! Noble says he is the result of a campaign of fear mongering among conservative media and conservative politics. He writes:
So let me say this again, because it is absolutely critical: Trump’s rise to political prominence is in large part the result of a failure on the part of mainstream conservatives to clean their own house—a failure that has led to a movement of conservatives, driven chiefly by paranoia and powerlessness, who latch on to the only candidate willing to fully pander to their fears. Which means that the way we fix this mess is not primarily by defeating Trump (although we pray for that, too!), but by beginning the hard work of showing a better way forward.
This is a good commentary on a serious problem in our country.
4. “Why are Pastors Leaving Churches so they can Pastor?” by Collin Hansen
This is a great piece that reflects on the need for both pastoral and administrative roles in the church. Hansen has written a really good piece here that is worthy of the time of all in pastoral ministry.
5. “#ThinkerThursdays: Alan Noble, Cofounder of Christ & Pop Culture” by Michael Wear
An interview with one of my dear friends and a brilliant thinker.
6. “On My Shelf: Life and Books with John Frame” by Ivan Mesa
I love this interview with my theological hero John Frame. Frame has no pretense about himself and this interview on what Frame is reading and writing about is different from the other ones in this series in that Frame isn’t really reading anything and he’s leading a simple life at his present age.
7. “How to Survive Superbowl Sunday if You Couldn’t Care Less About Sports” by Tiffanie Brunson
Yes, this is me.