A Morning Peacock of Links (4/24)

Where Are the Dads? Treating Richmond’s Fatherless Epidemic

From CT Today – How local Christians are building human capital through public health—one man at a time. A preventative rather than a curative emphasis on combating the disease rather than symptoms of broken families. Whereas the status quo seeks to increase aid to single mothers, various coalitions and groups in Richmond are seeking to empower and equip fathers to reunite and properly provide for their families. Here are some of the numbers they are hoping and praying to reverse:

The findings were sobering: Of all births in Richmond in 2007, 65 percent of children were born to single mothers. Among black children, that rate was 84 percent. (In 2007, the national nonmarital birth rate was 40 percent.) And the social service programs stepping in for broken family structures—child welfare, food stamps, housing assistance, and school meals, among others—were alone costing the city over $50 million annually. Martin Brown, Virginia Commissioner of Social Services and Core Team member, says the document revealed how much the God-ordained institutions of family and government had gotten entangled. “Each institution has either acquiesced or taken responsibility away from the other, and we’ve grown dysfunctional in solving some of our problems,” says Brown. (Using Scafidi’s model, Brown calculates that father absence costs the state $2 billion annually.)

We’ve Been Duped By Freud on Cross-Gender Friendship

A response by Dan Brennan to this article by Sharon Miller which I linked to in an earlier post.

From Miller’s post:

According to this second view, we need not fear cross-gender friendships. We can approach one another in confidence and full-embrace, following the example of Jesus himself, who apparently welcomed cross-gender friendships. Such friendships pose no threat to our marriages, and can actually strengthen them.


That strength aside, this approach has gone awry in its understanding of marriage and Christian freedom. One of the main proponents of it, a married man, touts his friendship with a single woman, a woman with whom he spends frequent alone time and even vacations without his wife. Other supporters of this approach, also married, have cross-gender “best friends” who are not their spouses. This, they believe, is not only healthy but also biblical.

From Brennan’s response:

If we claim to be brothers and sisters in Christ, these loves are a viable path from alienation to reconciliation between the sexes in this present world. Our personal communities may include friendship patterns that resemble close sibling relationships, build trust, and strengthen shared life together.

Freudian boundaries perpetuate sexism, suspicion, and sexual objectification, rather than patiently nurturing oneness between men and women. Friendship is a path out of alienation and its trappings—a robust path towards relational oneness. We must not confuse unhealthy triangles with healthy, close relationships with brothers and sisters in Christ.

The Old Testament Is a Story of Providence

Kevin DeYoung eloquently describing the Old Testament as what it is – a story of divine providence. A very encouraging read:

The story of the Old Testament is nothing if not a story of divine providence. On every page, in every promise, behind every prophecy is the sure hand of God. He sustains all things, directs all things, plans all things, ordains all things, superintends all things, works all things after the counsel of his will.

This is not a small theme in the Old Testament. Providence is not merely an implied truth, deduced from a handful of obscure passages. No, the doctrine of divine providence is the soundtrack of Scripture. It is everywhere present even if at times you are not consciously aware of it. Like the book of Esther where God’s name is never mentioned but everything from a beauty contest (2:18) to a king’s insomnia (6:1-3) serve to advance God’s purposes. The God of the Bible is a big God who does not leave things to chance. He does not simply react; he predestines. He does not merely turn hard situations for our good; he ordains hard situations for our good. Our God is never confused and never caught off guard. His will, to quote Augustine, is the necessity of all things.

Chuck Colson and the Conscience of a Hatchet-Man

Russell D. Moore on Chuck Colson, the media and the Gospel:

When you read those who smirk and dismiss the Chuck Colson conversion, the Chuck Colson life, don’t get angry and don’t be outraged. Read a subtext that belongs to all of us: the fear that the criminal conspiracy we’ve all been a part of will be exposed, and just can’t be forgiven. Read the undercurrent of those who find it hard to believe that one can be not just pardoned, but “born again.” That’s indeed hard to believe. An empty grave in Jerusalem is all we have on which to base that claim, a claim that speaks louder than our own accusing hearts.

You’re Dating Mr. Wrong If…

Ruthie Dean with 10 reasons why women might be dating Mr. Wrong. Her husband, Michael, will be writing “You’re Dating Mrs. Wrong If. . .” for the guys later this week.

25 Quotables from the 99 Conference

A list of quotables from the previous three 99% Conferences which have dealt with making ideas and increasing creativity/productivity.

17 Elaborately Staged Theme Park Ride Photos




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