The definitive history of evangelicalism

Read in < 1 min


The definitive history of Evangelicalism

The History of Evangelicalism Series offers the definitive account of the development of the Christian movement that has most significantly shaped the culture of the United States. 


This series seeks to integrate the social and intellectual history of a diverse yet cohesive Christian movement over the last three hundred years. The associations, books, practices, beliefs, networks of influence and prominent individuals which descended from the eighteenth-century British and North American revivals all come into view. Accessible to a wide range of readers, the volumes of the History of Evangelicalism Series provide not only factual details but also fascinating interpretations of a movement that is still influential today.

Volumes include:

  • The Rise of Evangelicalism: The Age of Edwards, Whitefield and the Wesleys by Mark A. Noll
  • The Expansion of Evangelicalism: The Age of More, Wilberforce, Chalmers and Finney by John R. Wolffe
  • The Dominance of Evangelicalism: The Age of Spurgeon and Moody by David W. Bebbington
  • The Disruption of Evangelicalism: The Age of Mott, Machen and McPherson by Geoff Treloar
  • The Global Diffusion of Evangelicalism: The Age of Graham and Stott by Brian Stanley

In Memoriam | Under an English heaven

Read in < 1 min

If I should die, think only this of me:
That there’s some corner of a foreign field
That is for ever England. There shall be
In that rich earth a richer dust concealed;
A dust whom England bore, shaped, made aware,
Gave, once, her flowers to love, her ways to roam,
A body of England’s, breathing English air,
Washed by the rivers, blest by suns of home.

And think, this heart, all evil shed away,
A pulse in the eternal mind, no less
Gives somewhere back the thoughts by England given;
Her sights and sounds; dreams happy as her day;
And laughter, learnt of friends; and gentleness,
In hearts at peace, under an English heaven.

Rupert Brooke, “The Soldier”

In memoriam

Gunner H. G. Gissing (1910-1942)

There is indeed a “corner of a foreign field that is forever England.” For our family it is 9,817 miles from where I sit, and 7,252 miles from the village of his birth.

In a field near Jakarta, he is laid to rest with fifty-seven brothers-in-arms who died together and now repose in a common grave.

The evidence suggests summary execution–the singularly high number of casualties and the hasty burial. Other accounts suggest killed in action by more honest means. The confusion of war, mores of defeat, is such that these things are rarely easy to uncover.

Two brothers fought there.

One died.

One lived.

The one who lived experienced a sort of living death in a Japanese camp until the end of the war.

My life is possible because of theirs.

Five ways to waste your weekend

Read in 2 mins (2)Weekends are precious so make sure you don’t waste yours

It’s been about a year since our family made the change to both Anna and I working full-time and out-of-the-house. The way we think about weekends has changed immensely! It’s challenging to find a sustainable pace.

Before that, either one or both of us had worked from home. There are some definite down-sides to working from home, but that kind of flexibility does make it way easier to get a full work day in and stay up on chores–especially if you’re able to avoid an hour in the car.

Over the last year I’ve made a number of mis-steps in managing the week which have led to wasted weekends. Here are five easy ways to waste your weekend and go back to work on Monday feeling robbed.

Do nothing but chores

The weekend won’t last forever.

Use every last ounce of energy to knock out every possible chore you could need to do during the week.

Fall into bed on Sunday night exhausted and then when the alarm goes off in the morning: hate your life.

Better alternative: try spacing out chores every night. Make a schedule and try to avoid all-or-nothing thinking.

Eat comfort food

 finally made it to the weekend.

You’re tired. You don’t want to cook.

Just grab a frozen pizza, fling it into a pre-heated oven and eat. 

Better alternative: Plan out some salads, fish, or other healthy meals so that you don’t have to make a decision in the moment.

Hibernate in the house

You get up early every morning and leave the house. You spend ours in the car each week fighting traffic. You deserve to stay on the couch all weekend watching sports.

Don’t you?

Better alternative: make time for rest and for exertion. If all you do is veg you’ll find yourself becoming lethargic. If all you do is exert, you’ll find yourself exhausted.

Say Yes to Everything

You only have one weekend. Try to pack a week’s worth of fun into it. 

There’s a lot going on.

Do. It. All.

Better alternative: designate part of your weekend solely for things that give you energy and that lift your spirit.

Burn the midnight oil

Sleep is for old people.

Young people.

The weak.

Make sure you wring every moment from the weekend by staying up late and getting up early. You’ll make up for it during the work week.

So. How do you waste your weekend?

Keeping conflict productive

Read in 2 mins

Conflict can be hot or cold–what are you dealing with?


Conflict is a part of life. Our goal should never be the total absence of conflict because, more often than not, the absence of conflict is more a sign of disease than of health.

Our goal ought to be the healthy and respectful expression of disagreement.

According to Harvard Business Review we typically deal with hot or cold conflicts.

“The Cold Conflict”

The cold conflict lurks beneath a façade of ice–aloofness, coolness, emotional distance. On the surface things seem peaceful, but in reality there is resistance–of a passive or subversive variety.

  • The employee says what you want them to say and then turns around a does whatever he wishes.
  • The spouse does and says all of the right things, but internally she is furious and has already checked out and is living a parallel life.

This situation requires heating up the conversation. In order to address and move beyond this situation, it has to be explicitly acknowledged and no longer can it remain the unacknowledged elephant in the room.

“The Hot Conflict”

Resistance isn’t always passive. At times it is very active–the blood pressure spikes, the face reddens, and the voice is raised.

This requires cooling down the conversation–specifically, when the parties have moved beyond healthy disagreement to an unproductive sort of bickering that is impeding the mission.

Getting to the Temperate Zone

In order fo2086701.jpgr conflict to be productive, it has to be moved from hot (torrid) or cold (frigid) into the temperate zone.

For those of you who remember basic biology and geology: recall the temperate zone. The earth’s temperate zones are the two areas of earth’s climates that experience four distinct seasons. It’s not hot all the time (that is the torrid zone around the equator), and its not cold all the time (that is the arctic and antarctic zones at the poles).

The temperate zones offer some degree of balance between hot and cold. It’s possible for life to exist in the torrid zone and in the frigid zones, but life isn’t as easy or as pleasurable there as in the temperate zones. Life flourishes in the temperate zones.

When it comes to conflict, the temperate zone offers us a balance between engagement and disengagement, between enmeshment and indifference.

In the temperate zone there is enough passion and energy to make a conversation animated, but not so much passion and energy that it becomes a shouting match.

In the temperate zone there is enough distance to allow one person to hear and consider the others’ views, but not so much distance that the interlocutors are checked out from the conversation.

Progress, answers, and change come in the temperate zone, not in the hot or cold stages (or zones) of conflict, because the temperate zone is the only place where people can understand and be understood. 



Understand better by reading in print

Read in 2 mins

Understand better when by reading in a print book

by Jeff Gissing | @jeffgissing


We were promised that print was dead, that it ink on paper would give way to pixels on a screen. To be sure, we do a great deal of reading online. It turns out that some types of reading are perfectly suited to a digital medium, others are not.

While school systems, universities, and libraries are increasingly purchasing digital assets it’s not always true that such a format is best for the type of reading their clients do. In fact, a review of studies has found that students understand information better when they read it in a print book.

Ironically, however, students prefer e-books even believing they performed better on them. According to “Reading on Paper and Digitally: What the Past Decades of Empirical Research Reveal” by Laura M. Singer and Patricia A. Alexander, “Students said they preferred and performed better when reading on screens. But their actual performance tended to suffer.” <link>


The researchers found the following:

  • Students overwhelming preferred to read digitally.
  • Reading was significantly faster online than in print.
  • Students judged their comprehension as better online than in print.
  • Paradoxically, overall comprehension was better for print versus digital reading.
  • The medium didn’t matter for general questions (like understanding the main idea of the text).
  • But when it came to specific questions, comprehension was significantly better when participants read printed texts.

Many committed readers will agree with this assessment. I can read pulp fiction on my Kindle. When my efforts turn to Gadamer or Aquinas, I reach for print every single time.


“Reading on Paper and Digitally: What the Past Decades of Empirical Research Reveal” by Laura M. Singer and Patricia A. Alexander

“A new study shows that students learn way more effectively from print textbooks than screens” by Laura M. Singer and Patricia A. Alexander