Thursday, May 19, 2011


It's certainly appropriate on this blog to talk about gentleness, which is strength under control!  I encourage you to reflect on these verses:

  • Matt 11:29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
  • Matt 21:5 “Say to the Daughter of Zion, ‘See, your king comes to you, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’ ”
  • Gal 5:23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
  • Gal 6:1 Brothers, if someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore him gently. But watch yourself, or you also may be tempted.
  • Eph 4:2 Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.
  • Phil 4:5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.
  • Col 3:12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
  • 1 Pet 3:15 But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect
  • 1 Thess 2:7 but we were gentle among you, like a mother caring for her little children.
  • 1 Tim 3:3 not given to drunkenness, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money.
  • 1 Tim 6:11 But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness.
  • 2 Tim 2:25 Those who oppose him he must gently instruct, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth,
  • Heb 5:2 He is able to deal gently with those who are ignorant and are going astray, since he himself is subject to weakness.
  • HT: quarentia

Friday, May 13, 2011

Where Did All This Hostility in the Middle East Come From?

If you want to explore the reasons for the conflicts in the Middle East, start with this prophecy of the son of Hagar:

The angel of the LORD also said to her:
“You are now with child
and you will have a son.
You shall name him Ishmael,
for the LORD has heard of your misery.
He will be a wild donkey of a man;
his hand will be against everyone
and everyone’s hand against him,
and he will live in hostility
toward all his brothers.”

(Genesis 16:11-12)

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

An Idea for Secondary Education

(Disclaimer: I'm not a professional educator.  I have no certifications in teaching children.  I do not create curriculum for children or youth.)

A modest proposal:

Focus elementary school years on the competencies of reading, writing, and math.I'm thinking about up through age12.

Then take the years from 12-18 and focus on these kinds of skills and experiences:
  • Reading critically from diverse sources of information.
  • Examine history in order to learn themes and patterns and lessons.  Especially study biographies.
  • Solving problems worth solving. Focus on it, get creative, stay after it. Use the scientific method and common engineering
  • Leading peers without authority, and the skills of influencing through communication and example.
  • Work on projects -- planning, executing, managing different aspects. 
  • Basics of finances and economics. Personal/family money management, and business use of money.
  • Hard work.
  • Continual learning, by self-directed and via mentors.
Remember, the word "educate" comes from Latin and literally means "to draw out."  This experience-driven approach requires whole communities of genuine adults who don't abdicate responsibilities to future generations. 

I suspect a secondary education curriculum like this would create a much larger population of good thinking, effective citizens than our current systems do. 

Your thoughts?

Saturday, May 07, 2011

Two Favorite Books for Boys

I read many wonderful books as a boy, but there are two adventure stories that I still enjoy reading as an adult:

My Side of the Mountain (by Jean George) -- the story of a boy set off to live in a tree by himself in the Catskills, and his adventures there. 
Banner in the Sky (by James Ramsey Ullman) -- the story of a boy who dreamed of climbing The Citadel, the last great unclimbed mountain in the Alps. 

Recommended for your boys!  (Note: Both have been made into movies, but the books are better.)

What other books for boys do you recommend? 

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Solving Problems, or Juggling Symptoms?

I recently received a good rebuke from a professional colleague: "Are you solving problems, Glenn, or do prefer to juggle symptoms?" 

Two-by-four, meet Mr. Forehead. 

This was a helpful insight, and not only for that moment.  Sometimes I really do prefer to juggle symptoms.  I'm good at juggling.  I still have a convenient pile of excuses for why things aren't done. (Excuses are lies we tell ourselves.) It's less work than solving problems. 

Monday, May 02, 2011

Free Audio Book: The Next Story

Flash update: Tim Challies' excellent book on how we should think about this massive rush of technological change, "The Next Story" is available as this month's free audiobook download.  Recommended.

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Water, Water!

I recently learned a few amazing facts about the colossal scale of the water cycle on planet Earth:

One cubic kilometer of water is 264 billion gallons -- a lifetime supply for 70,000 people. 
The ocean's evaporate a cubic kilometer of fresh water every 72 seconds, 1,200 cubic kilometers of fresh water a day -- which is 45,000 gallons of fresh water a day for every person on earth (two full swimming pools' worth).
Each day's evaporation joins an incredible river of 12,900 cubic kilometers of water already floating in the atmosphere. That's more water whirling through the atmosphere than sits in four of the five Great Lakes combined (Michigan, Huron, Erie and Ontario). 
And yet the Earth is a relatively dry place.  If the Earth were the size of a Honda Odyssesy minivan, all the water on the planet would fit in a single half-liter bottle. 


To God be the glory!