1. James K.A. Smith on “holy worldliness”
James K.A. Smith writes for Christianity Today’s This Is Our City project on the “earthly city” and cultural transformation, with nods to Rich Mouw and Augustine:
[A]s citizens of the City of God who find ourselves exiled in the earthly city (in Augustine’s technical sense) are called to “seek the welfare of the city” precisely because we are called to cultivate creation. We will seek the welfare of the earthly city by seeking to annex it to the City of God, thereby reordering creaturely life to shalom.
2. Jon Foreman on the fight & the dance
The Switchfoot frontman is at it again with a new Huffington Post piece:
Yes, it’s a dog-eat-dog world, and dogs don’t dance. In fact, most of the creatures here on the planet can fight, very few can dance. We humans have the rare honor of rising above the fight of natural selection and choosing to seek a higher good than mere survival. I could choose joy instead of the fight. Unfortunately, the fight still seems to be the rut that I (and the rest of the human race) fall into. It’s sad but true. We struggle better than we salsa. The habit of the fight seems easy to explain: Dominance is easier to achieve than friendship; consumption is easier than love; and objectification is easier than empathy. Certainly, I desire to enter into the dance of happiness and joy. But, all too often I’m distracted by the fight: sidelined by the little battles along the way.
3. Forum on human rights in Guatemala
Back in June I referred to an amazing, heart-breaking story produced by This American Life about a Guatemalan man living in Boston named Oscar Ramirez. He recently participated in a panel discussion hosted by the Washington Office on Latin America focused on obstacles to justice for human rights abuses in Guatemala. The video is here, and it also features two people who are featured in Granito, the documentary I blogged about last month.
4. Tim Keller on biblical justice
I reviewed Tim Keller’s Generous Justice a while ago, shortly after it came out, but was just reminded of how good and important it is thanks to an excerpt reprinted in RELEVANT this week:
Despite the effort to draw a line between “justice” as legal fairness and sharing as “charity,” numerous Scripture passages make radical generosity one of the marks of living justly. The just person lives a life of honesty, equity and generosity in every aspect of his or her life. If you are trying to live a life in accordance with the Bible, the concept and call to justice are inescapable. We do justice when we give all human beings their due as creations of God. Doing justice includes not only the righting of wrongs but generosity and social concern, especially toward the poor and vulnerable.
5. National Geographic’s photo contest winners
The Big Picture has the 11 winning photos from the 2012 National Geographic Traveler Magazine Photo Contest, and many of them are quite good (as one might expect from a competition with a name like that).
6. Josh Garrels is building a studio
If you’re not sick of me posting videos from the singer-songwriter Josh Garrels (like this, this, and this), consider another. He’s working on his follow-up record to “Love & War & The Sea In Between” and he’s looking for a little help.
Repaso is intended as a thought-provoking compilation of news and commentary from the past week related to the intersections of faith, development, justice and peace. As always, I welcome your thoughts on any of the links and ideas in this roundup!
[Photo credit: "A lonely cabin is illuminated under the Northern Lights in Finmmark, Norway." (Photo and caption by Michelle Schantz/National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest) via The Big Picture]