You are graduating toward a world full of bullet holes. What should we, then, turn our attention to? What should we run toward? Can we, too, turn back to the flowers we have trampled upon? What does it mean to “graduate”? “Graduate” can mean to “rise above.” We are to rise above the darkened realities, the confounding problems of our time. We are to rise above the rancor of discord, above our ideological warfare, above civil wars and World Wars. We are to rise above ourselves, our selfishness, our own drive to master the world, our desire to map out our own destiny apart from God.
2. Food, famine, and aid
At the Q 2012 gathering, Gabe Lyons (@GabeLyons) facilitated a discussion with Stephan Bauman (@stephanjbauman) David Beckmann (@davidbeckmann), and Paul Weisenfeld on aid and development:
The split between the “haves” and “have-nots” is ever-apparent, but the reality of world crises isn’t always accurately depicted and the proposed solutions sometimes hurt more than they help. How can we discern the truth about global needs so we can effectively meet them? And what types of solutions are best? This Q panel convenes experts on global humanitarian crises to discuss what is behind these problems and how we should respond.
3. Putting war on trial
Danny Carroll, the Guatemalan-American biblical scholar I included in Repaso two weeks ago, has written a nuanced piece reflecting on mixed opinions about the legacy of Rios Montt, and invites Christians to reexamine our attitudes about war itself:
Decades after his rule in Guatemala, the Ríos Montt trial is an opportunity for Christians to rethink attitudes toward war. The genocide verdict should lead us to reflect more broadly on why we continue to endorse politics of violence. We must learn from that dreadful time that the political end cannot justify inhumane means for those who claim the faith.
4. Putting y’all back in the Bible
John Dyer (@johndyer) introduces Texas Bible, a software project that makes up for the second person plural deficit many of us non-Texans unknowingly bring with us to readings of Scripture. At first glance it may seem silly, but I’ve been convinced for quite a while that we misread Scripture when we read every “you” in the singular without a second thought. Here’s some of Dyer’s background on the project:
Here in Texas (and in the Southern US more generally), I tell my audience that we have a perfect equivalent to the original Greek/Hebrew second person plural: “y’all” the contraction of “you all.” This of course always gets me a good laugh. And this is not unique to the Southern US – many other areas of the English speaking world also have spoken forms of you plural such as “you guys,” “yinz,” and “you lot.” A few weeks ago, I decided to see how many times this happens. It turns out there are at least 4,720 verses (2,698 in the Hebrew Bible and 2,022 in the Greek) with you plural translated as English “you” which could lead a reader to think it is directed at him or her personally rather than the Church as a community.
5. Transcending the job description
My father-in-law Thom Olmstead was profiled by Christy Tennant Krispin (@ctk206) for This Is Our City about his 37 years of faithfulness as a public school teacher in an unglamorous school district. It makes all of us pretty proud.