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Letters from our readers

Issue: "Wealth and poverty," March 14, 2009

Glad to share

We were very happy to see Aaron Schock on the cover of your Jan. 31 issue ("Schock factor"). We tried hard to find some blessings in the aftermath of the November elections and found two: Obama would no longer represent us in the United States Senate, and Schock would now serve in Congress. We are sorry to lose him in the Illinois state legislature but glad to share him with the nation.
-Scott & Pam Johnson; Tolono, Ill.

Blue Slug Democrats?

Blue Dog Democrats ("Blue Dog comeback?" Jan. 31) say that they are pro-life and for fiscal restraint, but their voting record shows that they are neither. They said they were reluctant to expand the deficit but gave no indication that they would oppose it, and they believed that President Obama would rein in spending. Are they simple political opportunists, or do they just have the backbone of a slug?
-David Albertsen; Arvada, Colo.

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Rep. Heath Shuler seems to think Christian charity is the government's responsibility. Someone should tell him that the biblical model is for a Christian to reach into his own pocket to help others; it is not the coercive hand of Caesar taking from productive people so politicians can claim credit for giving to others.
-Ron Olson; Rugby, N.D.

Tough things

I read "The horror, the hope" (Jan. 31) just after returning from South Africa to visit some friends and witnessing (in a seminary, AIDS clinic, and other ministries) what Christ can do in desperate situations. Along with the beautiful stories, there is so much devastation brought on by hopelessness, promiscuity, selfishness, and denial. Only the Holy Spirit could transform people to give unselfishly to a community that is not, ethnically speaking, their own.
-Connie Sikma; Grand Rapids, Mich.

Thank you for the reminder of the civil wars and slavery going on in Africa and its need for the gospel. Through an online ministry, I am corresponding with believers and some folks considering a relationship with Jesus Christ from places like Liberia, Nairobi, Johannesburg, Dakar, and Abuja. It's exciting to be in contact with them, although many must struggle through the tough things going on in those places.
-Chris Payton; Albuquerque, N.M.

True leadership

Former NAE Vice President Richard Cizik's comments supportive of same-sex unions were disappointing ("Evangelical shift?" Jan. 31). True leadership would speak out against the sinful trends of the day, not support them. Are we serving God or man's changing moral values?
-Bill R. Dickson; O'Brien, Fla.

After reading the startling statistics about the anti-scriptural leanings of younger "evangelicals" coupled with other dismal numbers coming out of church polls, isn't it time to stop being surprised and redefine the word evangelical? And if 89 percent of Americans say that they believe in God, then why aren't we a godly nation?
-Elaine Neumeyer; Big Canoe, Ga.

Weird years

I can't wait for the next installment of Marvin Olasky's memoirs of his "weird years" ("Deeper into sin," Jan. 31). Any testimony of God's grace is heartwarming, but to hear of His work in turning a man so radically from one worldview to another is just thrilling.
-John Bray; Houston, Texas

I sat mesmerized reading "Deeper into sin." It is rich in information on Marxism, Communism, the beauty of America, and the rich irony that everything Olasky was searching for can only be found in America. He illustrated a great truth: Tell us your story, with understanding, clarity of hindsight, a little humility, and some humor, and we will stop and listen, searching for clues about what is right and what is true.
-Janet Hammerquist; Fruitland, Idaho

Silent no more

I live in New York City, the home of many scrappy, argumentative people. My best friend and I take solace in talking with each other about heavy issues, but we often don't speak up in public because we are afraid of the drama that might ensue afterwards. "Silent betrayal" (Jan. 31) made me think that maybe if I speak up more often, there may be someone nearby who wishes he could do the same.
-Victoria Folkerts; New York, N.Y.

Downed Hill

It is quite unjust that Capt. Hill be made the scapegoat in this tragic situation ("No good choices," Jan. 31), and it seems that Lt. Col. Tony DeMartino has some answering to do for ignoring Capt. Hill's request for help with these spies, who were eventually released. I wish Capt. Hill Godspeed and a new life as a civilian.
-Joseph M. Gates; Mount Prospect, Ill.


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