Summer Days With Nietzsche and Hopkins

I am taking a few days of vacation in August, and I love it. Once we get into a break like this, we suddenly realize how much we need it. I’m sure you know what I mean. But the long days of sunlight, playing catch with my grandsons, Fourth of July…


Living in a World of Colliding Maps

The late, great Jewish novelist Chaim Potok said on my campus some years ago that “we live in a world of colliding maps.” I think he is absolutely right about that, though I don’t always like it. What did he mean by this? In part he meant that each…


To The Moon And Back

I find myself imagining the hundreds of thousands of scientists, engineers, managers, office personnel, and executives it took to put two men on the moon. That was forty years ago today, July 20, 1969. And then the millions of people around the…


Where Does World Change Begin?

I recently attended a fundraising breakfast sponsored by a fine organization in Seattle that is dedicated to bringing the best of medical technology to the health and wellness of poor children across the globe. The organization is called PATH, and…


What’s The News Today?

The news moves fast these days. The afternoon of Michael Jackson’s sudden death, a young man on a commuter train spotted a gentleman across the aisle reading a newspaper. The young man looked up from his iPhone in shock and dismay over the death of…


Energized by Your Comments

I hope you are engaging with me on some of these ideas in this blog. I launched the blog because I want to carry on a conversation about some of the things that matter to me, things that matter to our world, I hope. And I am thrilled with the…


Madoff in Hell

Bernie Madoff stood before the judge today for sentencing and received a 150-year sentence. We were told he would be allowed to doff his jail-issued uniform for the occasion. The judge gave permission for him to put on his cashmere-blended pants one…


Leading With Grace — What Really Matters

David Hubbard, longtime president at Fuller Seminary, was a towering figure for me about how to lead courageously, with conviction and clarity, and yet to lead with grace. Shortly before his untimely death, I invited Dave and Max De Pree, another…


The Encounter: Why We Need Great Teachers

A hugely important person in my life died this week. And I’ve been thinking a lot about what a professor can mean to a student — throughout life. Real education just isn’t going to happen from a computer on the kitchen table, or from massive…


The Biblical Imagination and the Economy? Really?

“Nobody knows. Nobody knows. Nobody knows” — this was the answer, from a smart, savvy friend of mine, to the question of where the bottom is to this awful economic freefall that seems to drag us down so painfully. He said he was quoting lyrics from…


Where Does Joy Come From?

I was in Jackson, Mississippi recently, and as I sat waiting in a van outside John Perkins’ home, an afternoon rain pelted the windshield steadily. On the plane to Jackson, I had been rereading John’s amazing autobiography, Let Justice Roll Down. I…


So . . . What’s This Blog All About?

I have this intense desire to carry on a conversation about things that matter — and so I decided to launch this blog. I hope these things matter to you as well. “How presumptuous,” that was my first thought about this blog. “Really? So you think…