By Jordan Standridge, reposted from The Cripplegate.
How many takes have you seen about Simone Biles and her decision to drop out of several events at the Olympics?
Everyone seems to have an opinion.
There are people that are angry at her. There are people that are thankful for her. There are people calling for more discussions about mental health. There are people blaming the horrid sexual abuse she experienced at the hands of Nassar. It seems like everyone is talking about it.
I happen to be re-reading Hamilton’s brilliant biography on Eric Liddell called For the Glory right now. And though Eric Liddell has always been a favorite missionary of mine, and his biographies have brought me often to tears, I never truly grasped the vitriol his country leveled at him after pulling out of the Olympics, as much as this week, after watching the response to the Biles situation.
From Faith Pulpit, Winter 2012.
Qoheleth, the author of Ecclesiastes,1 looked at the various areas of life and concluded that everything was vanity.2 He started (1:2) and ended (12:8) his writing by stating, “vanity of vanities, all is vanity.” Is vanity, however, the theological message of Ecclesiastes? Or should it be understood in a more positive light? Gordon Fee and Douglas Stuart, co-authors of How to Read the Bible for All Its Worth, take differing views: “[one of us] understands Ecclesiastes to be an expression of cynical wisdom, which serves as a kind of ‘foil’ regarding an outlook on life that should be avoided; [the other one of us] understands the book more positively, as an expression of how one should enjoy life under God in a world in which all die in the end.”3 So is Ecclesiastes a warning to us of the vanity of life outside of a relationship with God or a message of how one can enjoy life despite its vanity?
"When the only function of work is profit-centered—for personal gain and wealth—versus the recognition of the divine privilege of expressing the qualities and character of God who granted it, work becomes far less satisfying and far less beneficial to the society and the context in which the work is done." - IFWE
"A study from Nashville-based Lifeway Research finds, compared to a decade ago, U.S. adults today are more likely to regularly wonder about meaning and purpose in this life but less likely to strongly believe finding a higher meaning and purpose is important." - BPNews
"In 2015... two Princeton economists, Anne Case and Angus Deaton, released a study documenting the frightening rise of “deaths of despair” among white non-college-educated Americans, showing even a decrease of life expectancy driven by alcoholism, drug abuse, and suicide." - N.Review