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LOWELL GRISHAM: Modern affirmations

Christian leaders offer ‘confession’ in time of crisis

Subscriber onlyAn impressive group of 19 American Christian leaders -- Protestant, Evangelical and Catholic; black and white -- shared a retreat together this past Ash Wednesday. I would like to use this column to offer some highlights of their published letter, "A Confession of Faith in a Time of Crisis." (Read the entire text online at reclaimingjesus.org.) Continue reading...

LOWELL GRISHAM: The political Jesus

Messiah reveals ongoing story of two kingdoms

Subscriber onlyFor Christians, last week was Holy Week, the most important week of our year. During Holy Week we tell a story starting with Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday. We follow him to his Last Supper with his friends, his betrayal, arrest, trial, conviction, execution and burial. It appears that his work is a failure, until Easter Sunday, when his disciples experience the new life of resurrection. Continue reading...

LOWELL GRISHAM: Protect the vulnerable

Issue 1 on November ballot represents skewed values

Subscriber onlyHow much is my 6-year-old granddaughter's life worth? How much is my 39-year-old daughter's life worth? If Arkansas passes the constitutional amendment titled "Issue 1" in November, their worth would be capped arbitrarily at $500,000 each. If either my granddaughter or daughter were injured or killed by another's negligence, no matter how much physical or psychological pain they might endure, the value of their non-economic suffering would be $500,000 or less. Continue reading...

LOWELL GRISHAM: Guns as public health issue

Does “well regulated” create opportunities?

Subscriber onlyLast Wednesday we suffered the latest of the school shootings afflicting our country. Again we ask, "What will we do about it?" Continue reading...

LOWELL GRISHAM: Expressions of racism

Nation’s immigration laws can reflect ugly attitudes

Subscriber onlyClaudia is a 19-year-old Dean's List student at the University of Arkansas Fort Smith. She's lived in Northwest Arkansas since before she was 2. She ran track for her high school -- 400 meters specialty -- and she graduated with honors. She qualifies for a college scholarship, but she is paying out-of-state tuition, approximately doubling her costs. To help pay for her education she works at Target and serves as a certified nursing assistant. Her drive and energy come through in her conversations. Claudia says she learned about hard work from her parents. Continue reading...

LOWELL GRISHAM: Jesus or Ayn Rand?

Leaders appear unconcerned about “least of these”

Subscriber onlyIn April 2012, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops sent a series of letters to Congress criticizing the federal budget plan authored by a fellow Catholic, U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, chairman of the House Budget Committee. That budget sought to reduce the federal deficit primarily through cuts to many safety net programs that serve the poor and vulnerable seniors. The bishops said the budget proposal failed to meet "moral criteria." Continue reading...

LOWELL GRISHAM: Olden days of yore

Jesus’ ancient lessons worthy of new embrace

Subscriber onlyHere we are on the cusp of Christmas. We are near the end of Advent, the season of preparation. Now is the annual Christian remembrance of the coming of Jesus. Continue reading...

LOWELL GRISHAM: Abuse destroys trust

Systems often struggle to recognize misdeeds of the powerful

Subscriber onlyOur human relationships function within complex webs of power and dependency grounded in trust. Continue reading...

LOWELL GRISHAM: Colors of life

All stages of development have room for God

Subscriber onlyThere are patterns in the development of human consciousness. We all start as infants, with primitive, self-centered needs for survival. Later we experience a wondrous, magical, fairy-tale world. As we grow, we make sense of our place in the world through our family and other close relationships. As our context widens, we usually develop a rational capacity; we start to question things for ourselves. Eventually some people develop a more pluralistic, universal perspective. Continue reading...

Lowell Grisham: Scriptures call for justice

Imagining how lessons would apply to nation’s actions, inaction

Subscriber onlyTwo of the most important words in the Hebrew Scriptures are mishpat and tzedakah. Continue reading...

Lowell Grisham: Bad laws need resistance

Protests reflect failure to “love your neighbor”

Subscriber onlyOne of the reasons Jesus was killed was because he broke the law. Jesus had a prophetic attitude toward the law, and it got him into arguments and into trouble. Continue reading...

Lowell Grisham: A monumental challenge

Could adding statues help nation tell its complex story?

Subscriber onlySymbols are powerful. Symbols participate in the reality they represent. They carry some of the presence and energy of whatever they point toward. A soldier will risk death for the flag because of what it means to the soldier. Continue reading...

Lowell Grisham: In line and waiting

Deferred action program’s future leaves many in limbo

Subscriber onlyMy friend Jonathan plans to return to the Apache reservation for the fourth time this fall to continue the Christian mission work he has been doing to help overcome high rates of depression and alcoholism within the tribe and to tutor education and faith development. He has a gift for inspiring. With his infectious smile and boundless energy, Jonathan can make people believe in their best possibilities. Continue reading...

Lowell Grisham: Who would Jesus insure?

Stories of Bible offer insights into health care

Subscriber onlyWhat do we owe one another in society? How do we structure our laws to promote freedom and justice for all? When Jesus was asked that question, he had a ready answer: "Love your neighbor as yourself." Continue reading...

Lowell Grisham: A gift that keeps giving

Medicare coverage should start at birth, not 65

Subscriber onlyI had a birthday last week. It was a big one. This was the year when I got the best birthday card ever, my Medicare Health Insurance card. Continue reading...

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