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Posts tagged "Low Anthropology"


From The New Yorker

Caught Between Love and Shame

Another excerpt from The Soul of Shame by Curt Thompson. Toward the end of his book, Thompson makes the case that our everyday lives are marked by tension between shame and love, isolation and community, disintegration and integration. In this chapter on vocation, he uses Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians to discuss the role […]

What Separates the Polite from the Frank

An excerpt from The School of Life’s remarkable entry on Politeness, which might explain why the “comedy of manners” remains such an enduring genre, grace-wise: What ultimately separates the Polite from the Frank person isn’t really a knowledge of etiquette. The difference doesn’t hang upon considerations of which knife to use at a formal dinner, […]

Another Week Ends: Martin Luther on COVID-19, Tara Isabella Burton, Christ and Calamity, Generational Sin, and Faithful Doubt

1. Mere Orthodoxy has published an excerpt from an excellent book, Christ and Calamity: Grace and Gratitude in the Darkest Valley, by Harold Senkbeil. I’ve noted some highlights below and if you like what you read, the e-book is free this month: Just what does it mean to deny yourself and take up your cross? […]

Frederick Buechner’s Bad News

A choice reflection from Frederick Buechner’s Quote of the Day (h/t KW):

The Gospel is bad news before it is good news. It is the news that man is a sinner, to use the old word, that he is evil in the imagination of his heart, that when he looks in the mirror all in a lather what he sees is at least eight parts chicken, phony, slob. That is the tragedy. But it is also the news that he is loved anyway, cherished, forgiven, bleeding to be sure, but also bled for. That is the comedy. And yet, so what? So what if even in his sin the slob is loved and forgiven when the very mark and substance of his sin and of his slobbery is that he keeps turning down the love and forgiveness because he either doesn’t believe them or doesn’t want them or just doesn’t give a damn? In answer, the news of the Gospel is that extraordinary things happen to him just as in fairy tales extraordinary things happen. Henry Ward Beecher cheats on his wife, his God, himself, but manages to keep on bringing the Gospel to life for people anyway, maybe even for himself. Lear goes berserk on a heath but comes out of it for a few brief hours every inch a king. Zaccheus climbs up a sycamore tree a crook and climbs down a saint. Paul sets out a hatchet man for the Pharisees and comes back a fool for Christ. It is impossible for anybody to leave behind the darkness of the world he carries on his back like a snail, but for God all things are possible. That is the fairy tale. All together they are the truth.

– Originally published in Telling the Truth

A Full Grown Man & His Sad Jelly Belly

A confession from Matt Magill: I have a complicated relationship with sugar. It’s really the candy that does me in. The guilty verdict on my perpetual adolescence needs no further evidence than my wicked sweet tooth and embarrassing proclivity to indulge it. No matter how often I throw out “Not today Satan!”, I trend towards […]

Jesus Didn’t Have a Pen

It struck me last week (not sure how, or why) that Jesus didn’t have a pen. St. Luke apparently had a pen. He had to write prescriptions. Did they have prescriptions back then? Certainly to be the “Dear and Glorious Physician” one would have to have a pen, or a quill, or a facsimile thereof. […]

A Gift on Father’s Day

This Father’s Day, my three children gifted me a bird feeder in the shape of a log cabin. Now, as they joyfully run amok in the playroom, I am reflecting on the gifts of fatherhood itself. Fatherhood has taught me that children are actually verbs. Also, that Legos multiply through their own procreative process. Yesterday […]

“I Do” Is Not “I Can”: From Jason Micheli’s Living in Sin

Thrilled to share this excerpt from Jason Micheli’s brand-new book Living in Sin: Making Marriage Work Between I Do and Death. The following comes from Chapter Three, “That’s What She Said” (pp 52-56). Strike what I said earlier against advice-giving because here’s some. But this isn’t just marriage advice, it’s Christian advice, advice on how […]

Mission: Difficult

The following was excerpted from Nick Lannon’s fantastic new book Life Is Impossible: And That’s Good News—a fundamental distillation of the law and the gospel in everyday life. This comes from the third chapter “Mission: Difficult.” I have heard the Christian life described in many different ways. Some have compared it to a race, or […]

Botched Convocation for the Handsome Boy Modeling School of Ministry

“Why is everyone scowling at me?” I had a week(s) where every time I made eye contact with someone, invariably, they would have this pained look on their face. I had to look into a mirror, like Boris Karloff in Targets, before realizing what was causing it: my face. Every time a certain subject came up, […]

Into the Spider-Verse: Anyone Can Wear the Mask but Web-Slinging Is Another Matter

Thrilled to share this review from superhero expert Jeremiah Lawson: Last week, Into the Spider-Verse won the Oscar for best animated feature film. Of the contenders, even though I loved Incredibles 2, I would be willing to say that for sheer fun Spider-Verse deserved its win. The film is a high-octane sugar-buzz film with a dense, complex array […]