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Posted by on Oct 23, 2017 in Education | 0 comments

Developing Grit…and Character

Developing Grit…and Character

  A 2011 article in the New York Times Magazine highlighted Riverdale Country School in New York City, and their eccentric headmaster Dominic Randolph. Riverdale is a “TT” (Top-tier) private school, whose tuition begins at $38,000 for prekindergarten, and commonly sends graduates to Harvard, Princeton and Yale. Yet when Randolph came to Riverdale, he immediately did away with AP classes, encouraged teachers to limit the amount of homework they assign, and cut many standardized tests for admissions. According to Randolph, the missing piece to the Riverdale curriculum was character. His curiosity in character development led him to meet with Martin Seligman, one of the founders of the Positive Psychology movement and professor at the University of Pennsylvania, and David Levin, founder of the KIPP network of charter schools, primarily for students in low-income urban areas. Levin had stressed character for years in the KIPP movement: walls are decorated with slogans like “Work hard,” “Be nice,” and “There are no shortcuts.” Seligman, on the other hand, had written an 800-page...

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Posted by on Oct 19, 2017 in Art, vocation | 0 comments

“Every Mother Every Father” – Work Songs: The Porter’s Gate Worship Project

“Every Mother Every Father” – Work Songs: The Porter’s Gate Worship Project

    “Every Mother Every Father” [Verse] Every mother, every father Called to raise up sons or daughters May your heart be patient May your mind be clear May our God be with you And calm your fears [Interlude] [Verse] Every mother, every father Called to raise up sons or daughters May your heart be patient And may your mind be clear May our God be with you And calm your...

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Posted by on Oct 16, 2017 in Art, vocation, Work | 0 comments

“Wood and Nails” – Work Songs: The Porter’s Gate Worship Project

“Wood and Nails” – Work Songs: The Porter’s Gate Worship Project

  For the next several days, I will be featuring new songs from a beautiful new project I had the chance to witness in person recently in New York City: Work Songs: The Porter’s Gate Worship Project, Vol. 1 (Live) Back in June 2017, a group of talented musicians, such as Josh Garrels, Audrey Assad, and Latifah Alattas, was convened by Isaac Wardell, the Director of Worship Arts at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Charlottesville, Virginia. Wardell noticed a surprisingly lack of mainstream worship songs focused on the theme of vocation. So he convened a community of leading worship artists and the result was a new album that, in my view, is the finest musical contribution to the church on the theme of vocation since the era of the Reformation.    The first song I’ll post here is “Wood and Nails (featuring Audrey Assad and Josh Garrels).” Enjoy – especially on your way to work this week.      “Wood and Nails”  [Verse 1] O humble carpenter, down on Your hands and...

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Posted by on Oct 12, 2017 in business, Craftsmanship & Manual Labor, vocation, Work | 0 comments

How Does Your Work Impact Those Down the Line?

How Does Your Work Impact Those Down the Line?

  Have you thought about the people affected by your work who you may never meet? Learn more in this excerpt from the e-book “The Call to Commerce: 6 Ways to Love Your Neighbor Through Business.” Catch the first post here on the blog as well.  3. Love Your Supply Chains Months ago, I had a moving conversation with Tim Dearborn, a professor at Fuller Theological Seminary and former vice president at World Vision International1. He shared the story of visiting a church built on slave forts in Ghana. As he sat in the cathedral, he could almost hear the cries of 19th century slaves echoing below. I asked him, “What do you think are the modern ‘churches built on slave forts’ today?” That is, what are the systemic injustices that Christians have knowingly – or unknowingly – supported in the modern world? He replied with two simple words: “Supply chains.” Rarely do we think about the labor conditions of those who sew our shirts or make components for our...

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Posted by on Oct 11, 2017 in business, Economy, Work | 0 comments

The Call to Commerce: 6 Ways to Love Your Neighbor Through Business

The Call to Commerce: 6 Ways to Love Your Neighbor Through Business

  “And who is my neighbor?” This question is just as pressing to us in 21st century America as it was 2,000 years ago. A legal expert, “who wanted to justify himself,” posed this question to Jesus. In response, Jesus told the Parable of the Good Samaritan. Like that expert, we look around the world today and see pressing needs at every turn: self-centered leadership, ignorance, poverty, political instability, disease, and spiritual darkness. Overwhelmed at the needs pouring into our digital devices, we ask “What can I really do?” Our temptation, like that of the Levite and the priest in the parable, is to walk past the needs of others and go about our day. Yet two surprising twists in Jesus’ parable can give us hope. First, the hero of the story is a Samaritan, a member of a mixed ethnic group despised by the Jews. Though the religious insiders – a Levite and a priest – pass by, it’s the heretic, the outsider, who stops to help. The...

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