Pass Through the Waters p. 30

Thank you for running this cover story. When that happened, I was an intern with the American Red Cross in Bexar County [Texas]. They sent me to Comfort to help with media relations. The love I saw exhibited between the kids and all of the adults (parents, staff, etc.) was something I never experienced before. While I was only there for a few days, this tragedy was the catalyst for my own salvation. I still can see the kids, terrified, half-naked, wearing bathrobes donated from the locals. The sound of the river was deafening. It took me years to reconcile the fact that God didn’t cause these kids to die to save me. But he used the tragedy and outpouring of his love to bring me into a relationship with him. I look forward to meeting these kids face-to-face one day.

Doug Riggle
Westerville, OH

A Degree of Contention p. 19

Using the “Dr.” title when one was given an honorary degree, and especially if the degree was granted by an educational institution that does not have a bona fide doctoral program or the institution is not properly accredited, gives reason for significant pause as to the credibility, motivation, ego, or insecurity of that person. We’re much more prone to endorse a candidate for a senior leadership position who does not have such a degree than one who touts such a degree but without having had serious academic endeavor to earn it.

Bruce Dingman
Westlake Village, CA

Jesus Is Lord. Period. p. 23

Roman citizens, including Christians under the Caesars like Nero, had no choice as to who was going to lead the empire. In 2016, evangelical leaders helped to elect the most unqualified, unethical, and narcissistic candidate as president and thus put politics above their Christian principles. Olsen’s statement that we should be on guard against talking about Trump more than Paul talked about Nero is a non-sequitur and does not apply given our democratic political system.

Kenell J. Touryan
Indian Hills, CO

I think it is a challenge to neither over- nor under-emphasize the impact POTUS has on our world, national conscience, and personal lives. I wanted to point out some contextual reasons that Paul (etc.) may have rarely mentioned Caesar: One, it would’ve been foolish for a persecuted church to needlessly incur further wrath by openly describing, or suggesting, treasonous beliefs or actions. And secondly: I doubt that 80 percent of the apostle’s audience had to be convinced that Caesar wasn’t their messiah. Yes, Jesus is the head of the church and we need to keep him in the center of our focus at all times (Col. 3:1–4). However, I firmly believe that we are dragging God’s good name through the mud when we dismiss or minimize the words/behaviors of a powerful man who claims Jesus is his Lord.

K. Pollock
Muskegon, MI

Holy Inefficiency in a Digital Age p. 42

Thanks so much for Christina Crook’s article. It prompted me to buy her book, The Joy of Missing Out, which I am enjoying tremendously. Just the title gives me hope, though the hard part is putting my phone down long enough to read it for extended periods.

Mary Mueller
Arlington Heights, IL

‘Every Day Is a Celebration’ p. 48

I am a photojournalist/humanitarian photographer who works a lot overseas with faith-based groups. I just finished reading the Richard Stearns interview by Jeremy Weber and loved it. So many inspiring quotes. It left me energized to continue doing the work of telling the stories of what is happening around the world, and how the church is, can, and should be involved. Keep up the great work. And thanks to you, Richard
Stearns, for a job well done!

Gary S. Chapman
Atlanta, GA

This is a must-read interview—excellent questions, solid depth, challenging and moving words from a gifted leader. There is much here for which to be thankful.

Chip Webb

Evangelism and the Arts? p. 70

As a fellow artist, I can relate to many of the issues brought up in the article. Hope to see many more creative expressions in CT.

Hal Moran
St. Charles, MO

Sharing the Gospel with Anyone You Meet p. 79

I am a proud brony [My Little Pony fan], and I avoid Christian-ese and the shop talk of the evangelical subculture at all costs when sharing my faith with others. I take after Greg Laurie in relating the gospel to non-believers. Like him, I’m a cartoonist; I draw My Little Pony fan art and it’s quite popular. I also have an MA in communication and totally agree with the theories mentioned in the article.

Rich Rodriguez

I Hated Church Ministry p. 88

Powerful testimony. Your ending is so strong. As a church we need to be mindful of the importance of fellowship and relationships. Thanks for being real.

Kari Beske Kramka

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