One of the most common experiences in the life of Christian service is not love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, or any other fruit of the Spirit; it’s frustration. Sometimes this arises from ungodliness in the servant; sometimes it is a genuine response to a situation that makes you feel like crying out, “God, what are you doing here?”
Emma Thornett’s short piece on the pleasures and pitfalls of travel generated much discussion about how, whether and why Christians travel. Read responses from
Look for fellowship
I must say I found Emma Thornett’s article (‘The trouble with travel’, June 2001) very revealing. The highlight of her trip was meeting up with link missionaries and being encouraged to be more faithful in her Bible reading and praying. Maybe that was what God led her halfway across the world to discover: that no matter where you are, the basics are still the same.
What is man? Throughout history great minds have tried to define us as a species, but the essence of humanity has proved hard to pin down. “Man is a featherless biped”, Plato concluded, although he was somewhat dissatisfied with this as a definition. “Man is a reasoning animal”, wrote Seneca, echoing Aristotle. “Man is a tool using animal”, said Carlyle, anticipating modern anthropology. Man is “a poor, bare, forked animal”, wrote Shakespeare in his habitual pessimism about humanity.
Some Briefing readers may have seen some of the Rev. Tim Costello’s recent public criti- cisms of The Briefing and of our publisher Phillip Jensen. I won’t go into the details of Tim’s gripes here, but one aspect might be worth clarifying for our readers. One of Tim’s accusations has been that we denied him any right of reply to the review of his book (that appeared in Briefing #265/6). Just to set the record straight, here’s what happened.
Twenty years ago, many people got married and had kids, if not, got married to have kids, but these days people seem to shack up and have dogs. Should a Christian couple’s plans include children?