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Mailbag

Letters from our readers

Issue: "Tidings of discomfort and joy," Dec. 28, 2013

‘Give me your tired’

Nov. 16  The plight of refugees worldwide is heartbreaking, and Mindy Belz’s plea for the United States to accept more refugees is commendable. However, as a volunteer refugee mentor, I see what they must endure to make it in this country. It’s not easy. Caseworkers are badly overloaded and government benefits are mind-boggling to navigate. I have seen refugee men so frustrated by it all that they snap. If we are to welcome more refugees, we must offer more resources.
—Esther Luna, Richardson, Texas

I disagree that the U.S. government should do more to aid Syrian refugees. Instead we need to remember our close friends and allies and do a much better job at helping them. We don’t have the resources to help every nation going through a natural disaster, self-induced crisis, or civil war.
—Matt Moughamian, Idaho City, Idaho

‘Don’t be so predictable’

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Nov. 16  I normally appreciate your thoughtful perspective but was taken aback by how this column used Bible verses as sledgehammers to attack Miley Cyrus. As Christians, we can do better at engaging our culture with wisdom and love.
—Lisa Adams, Winchester, Va.

We shouldn’t be surprised by Cyrus’ public meltdown. Her sudden fall from teen idol to edgy and unhinged 20-year-old is just a well-orchestrated publicity stunt. The object lesson is for the rest of us. It wasn’t any more acceptable to idolize the pop star when she was the squeaky-clean Disney persona than it is now.
—Paul Holcomb, Marietta, Ga.

‘Salt over sugar’

Nov. 16  I am thrilled that CCM culture is shifting from “missions to profits,” and it’s great to see these new artists relying on honesty and musical excellence rather than popular culture and radio play.
—Elijah Tate Buck, Warsaw, N.Y.

‘Broken music’

Nov. 16  J.B. Cheaney’s comparison of the breakdown of families to the breakdown of music nicely complemented “Salt over sugar.” Modern music, which had “established principles of harmony and melody,” as Cheaney said, is dying along with Western culture. CCM lyrics need sound theology.
—Nick Greear, Cedaredge, Colo.

‘Cease your sulking’

Nov. 16  Reading Andrée Seu Peterson helps me be honest with myself, God, and others, and she did it again with this column. I’ve had a long struggle with anger and have now resolved to finally let it go. Often I have reread “From this day forward” (Dec. 29, 2012) and wept over the losses of the past and the hopes of the future. Perhaps I shall weep less over the losses and more for future blessings. Perhaps it is really not too late.
—Katie Maddox, Gray, Ga.

‘Not bluffing’

Nov. 2  I am weary of Christians attacking other Christians for matters of conscience. Thank you to WORLD for not casting stones and thank you to Jerry Jenkins for reminding us that being in the world and not of it enables us to “rub shoulders with unsaved people” and share Christ.
—Lea Ann Brookens, Colorado Springs, Colo.

Perhaps we need to judge things such as poker by asking, Would Jesus do this? Does it glorify God? Is it good stewardship? Am I avoiding the appearance of evil? As for finding unbelievers to rub shoulders with, we are surrounded by hurting people if only our eyes will see them.
—Melissa Brock, West Unity, Ohio

Although the Bible does not explicitly forbid poker, in the interest of love and mutual edification Jenkins should quit playing publicly.
—Jim Hasak, Prescott, Ariz.

Reading about Jenkins’ poker playing was deeply disappointing. As a graduate of Moody Bible Institute, I believe he should step down from his position as chairman of the board. I have seen the devastating effects of gambling in several families and pray he looks for another way to spend his leisure time.
—Jackie James, Prairie Village, Kan.

‘Still going strong’

Nov. 2  How about trading a paying job for the joy of productive retirement? Rather than valuing only work for pay, we should consider retirees who demonstrate the many productive activities in which “retired” people engage. That might move the conversation beyond the stereotype of healthy seniors living off the government so they can golf every day.
—Cheryl von Drehle, Roscommon, Mich.

‘Whole new ballgames’

Nov. 2  Your article on the rise of Gaelic hurling in the United States reminds me of when it was occasionally featured on ABC’s Wide World of Sports back in the ’60s. This exotic yet brutal sport fascinated me. Given our nation’s love affair with sports, I wonder how long until it has its own cable network?
—Stefan A.D. Bucek, San Jose, Calif.

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