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Mailbag

Letters from our readers

Issue: "2010 The Year Ahead," Jan. 16, 2010

The true battle

Having spent half my adult life in the country with the largest population of Muslims in the world, I find it hard to believe how naïve we can be here in America about the true battle we face. Thank you for not being politically correct in delineating for us the recent terrorist attacks on our own soil, and for speaking the truth about the Fort Hood terrorist attack ("Homegrown terror," Dec. 5).
-Neil Johnston; Grand Prairie, Texas

Lynn Vincent's cover story article is professional, proactive journalism at its best. WORLD's reporting is deeply appreciated by those who wish to defend America and her interests based on the facts.
-Ken Jones; Franklin, N.C.

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Thank you very much for "Homegrown terror" and the sidebar by Mindy Belz ("Feeding jihadi fever," Dec. 5). Both articles were illuminating. We haven't seen or heard anything like these reports in other journals or on TV, except in bits and pieces.
-Bruce & Barbara Witherspoon; Port Huron, Mich.

Artistic value

Thank you for "Art in the heart" (Dec. 5). As a Christian and a professional artist, it's a tough sell sometimes to get the church to recognize the Beauty part of Truth, Goodness, and Beauty. My fellow artists and I appreciate any attempts to open minds about the value of beauty and how it is an essential part of being made in God's image.
-Ann Boyer LePere; Peletier, N.C.

Our inborn "Art in the heart" is not an evolutionary survival tool, as Cheaney clearly illustrates. Instead it is striking evidence of being made in the image of God. We can appreciate that the Creator of beauty gave men and women the ability to recognize and enjoy it.
-Michael DuMez; Oostburg, Wis.

A heavy yoke

I heartily disagree with Arsenio Orteza's review of Steven Curtis Chapman's new album Beauty Will Rise ("Suffering souls," Dec. 5). On the first listen I cried my eyes out. It was not because I was hearing about his tragedy but because I understood the pain so well. On the second hearing, I rejoiced in the hope we have in heaven. Some day my severely disabled little boy will be whole, and we will understand all we suffer here.
-Teresa Jorgenson; Marysville, Wash.

The reviewer asserts that Chapman has not "yet figured out" how to make his pain universal. Where does the reviewer's expectation that Chapman write a "21st-century musical Book of Job" come from? It seems a heavy yoke for an artist to bear. Chapman sings through the suffering and shows us what it means to grieve in faith.
-Scott Anderson; Minneapolis, Minn.

Not to be avoided

Matt Anderson put things in proper perspective for us all when he wrote, "children are not a carbon footprint to be avoided" ("Don't miss the joy," Dec. 5). Having 10 brothers and four sisters is a blessing I wouldn't want to miss, and having five of our own children is a blessing that "stuff" cannot replace.
-Joel Gingerich; Minerva, Ohio

Anderson's column about the gift of family was great, although many people probably remember dysfunctional, bitter family relationships and get-togethers that they have no desire to experience again. But I would go further in encouraging young Christian couples to have children. Why, if they have given God control of their lives, would they keep control of planning their family? Aren't children a blessing from the Lord?
-Patricia Teeter; Chepachet, R.I.

Unfair analysis

It didn't seem fair to use Rick Warren and Joel Osteen to illustrate the interesting question of whether Christian authors should forward all book royalties to their ministries ("Base royalties," Dec. 5). God used Rick Warren to build the Saddleback ministry as a church plant that started from Warren's own home. Osteen took over a semi-large church from his dad, but no platform for book sales existed till that church grew by leaps and bounds under Osteen's leadership.
-Paul M. Cooper; Marshall, Ill.

As longtime WORLD appreciators and members of Saddleback Church for even longer, we were disappointed at your placing Rick Warren and Joel Osteen in the same camp in "Base royalties." We have witnessed Pastor Rick leading by example in giving sacrificially and living modestly, now and before he became so visible. And I noted that Osteen's face is large on the front cover of his books and you or yours is in the titles, but the first words of The Purpose Driven Life are, "It's not about you."
-Becky Scholten; Mission Viejo, Calif.

The original

I was quite intrigued to read in Andrée Seu's column ("The Christmas fool," Dec. 5) that Salvation Army founder William Booth had once asked, "Why should the devil have all the best tunes?" I guess Larry Norman wasn't the first to think of that line.
-Stefan A.D. Bucek; San Jose, Calif.

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