Over the last few decades the term “safe space” has been used to name a physical space, event or conversation that intends to protect people from attitudes, words, and perspectives that may be perceived as hurtful to someone or offensive to their own convictions. I hear it frequently in my church, but this new “safe” initiative has been most prevalent on public university campuses, and usually pertains to discussions of controversial social issues. This practise needs to stop, for our own safety. … More Making Space not Safe, but Good: Learning to Listen Hard so we Don’t Shoot
At every university student poster sale, Einstein’s wild hair (and sometimes protruding tongue) accompanies his quip that “Imagination is more important than logic.” Imagination is not the sole domain of the artsy and literary types, and its good that we have a scientist promoting more than rationality. But Einstein’s next line opens up all kinds of surprises: “Imagination is the language of the soul.” Yes, the imagination is religion’s home country, and every Christian’s gift to steward. Survival is insufficient, as Star Trek’s famous quote tells us. We must all explore beyond the visible and the known to somewhere better. … More Imagine A New World: The Stretching and Chastening of Our Creative Powers
Summer officially begins in two days. COVID notwithstanding, its time to make plans to get away from work, spend more time outdoors, getting exercise, exploring creation, and investigating new landscapes and communities. We just got a used trampoline for the backyard, and we are planning a family bicycle trip this month. These kind of activities, … More Everyone do Leisure Studies: Summer, Recreation, and Vocation
Zoom means fast. Zoom is so fast it connects two distant points almost instantly. In fact, Zoom assumes social distance, and to some extent the whole modern world is zooming away during COVID: families, friends, churches, businesses, governments, and even doctors. Zoom allows us to see and hear each other without getting infected by what the other person’s presence might bring with it. But I’m only giving two cheers for Zoom. … More Two Cheers for Zoom: Video Conferencing during COVID as a Gift without Presence
Some would normalize mental illness, but insofar as it is debilitating, it indicates dis-order, something amiss in one’s soul, and everyone feels its shadow fall across their life in some way, instigating hope for healing in a life lived coram deo, before the face of God. … More Wonder, Heartbreak, Hope and Joy for Distressed Souls: A Reformed Theology of Personhood and Mental Health
Dr. Van Belle brings together his faith, this therapist’s heart, and his philosophical mind to invite us to faith in a secular age.