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Letters from our readers

Issue: "Inside the wire," March 22, 2014

‘Africa’s hinge’

Feb. 8  I serve with the Rafiki Foundation, which has been working in Africa over the last quarter century, and your analysis of the challenges in Uganda is quite accurate. The specter of Islam is looming. On one trip recently I was stunned to see a new mosque in almost every little village. It was chilling.
—Karen Elliott, Eustis, Fla.

Uganda has many challenges. The country suffered many wounds under Idi Amin and Milton Obote and many more with the HIV and AIDS epidemic in the 1990s. Then came atrocities from the Lord’s Resistance Army in northern Uganda. Christians uniting in prayer against corruption, economics, and Islam offer hope for Uganda, as well as for all Africa.
—Carolyn Inlow, Roebuck, S.C.

‘The Calvinist’s temptation’

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Feb. 8  I have spent the first 13 years of my life in a Reformed church and find it troubling to read a quote in this article calling Calvinism a “fad” when it has been around for centuries. As a teenager, I am often tempted to take shortcuts in my faith, but Reformed doctrine has given me the foundation to remain a faithful Christian.
—Siobhan Piercey, Boscawen, N.H.

Not everyone who believes in salvation by grace and the eternal security of the believer wears the label of modern-day Calvinism. And many held to those scriptural beliefs long before the days of the European reformers.
—Joseph Powell, Atwater, Calif.

Thirty years ago I accepted the position of elder at our church. The head elder at that time was a staunch Calvinist, and I am not. But we served together for over five wonderful, Christ-centered years in which Scripture, prayer, respect, and most of all, love, were the rule. This column brought back precious memories.
—Kristofer Sandlund, Zanesville, Ohio

‘Challenges and blessings’

Feb. 8  I identified with this column in many ways. My mother came to live with us a few years ago and watching her decline slowly is so very painful. But in giving up my busyness in the institutional church I have learned a wonderful lesson from the Lord: I have done nothing as important as taking care of this one frail woman who loves Him.
—Pamela Wood, Independence, Kan.

I have dreamed of sailing around the world since I was a child, and have been around boats all my life. But then our son Mathew fell in our pool two days before his second birthday. He’s 19 now. The dream changed dramatically that day. I have wrestled with our circumstances, but God has been faithful and worked through our weaknesses as long as we’ve surrendered to His will.
—Michael Reardon, Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.

As I write this it’s 3:30 a.m. I’m awake and uneasy because I just cut back on a ministry that has been a blessing and a privilege in order to be present with my husband through a life-threatening illness. It is hard, but thanks to this column and confidence in the Lord’s loving intent, I believe that His plan is better than mine.
—Nancy Seay, Dallas, Texas

Notable Books

Feb. 8  I was saddened by your comment in an otherwise excellent review of Flannery O’Connor’s prayer journal that she “occasionally prays to Mary.” As a Catholic, I would point out we do not pray to Mary; we ask her to pray for us as we would ask a family member to pray for us today.
—Natasha Bentz, Billings, Mont.

‘Jack attack’

Feb. 8  I’ve enjoyed your movie reviews for years, but I must disagree that Alec Baldwin is “the most-loved Jack Ryan incarnation.” Harrison Ford was clearly the quintessential Jack Ryan in Patriot Games and Clear and Present Danger. If only we could elect someone in 2016 who would match President Ryan’s character.
—Kenneth D. Lueke, Bad Axe, Mich.

‘Long search, short tenure’

Feb. 8  I represent Edward O. Blews Jr. Plain and simple, CCCU breached my client’s employment contract and violated his rights. Now, “anonymous” sources are even trying to turn the tables to paint CCCU as the victim by making false accusations against him. No amount of institutional public relations can change what they’ve done. Just the opposite, we are now looking into some additional claims arising from those intentional misrepresentations.
—Joyce Smithey, Annapolis, Md.

‘Single but not solitary’

Feb. 8  It is difficult to see godly, attractive, and successful women who, not blessed with a Christian husband, ask Fabs Harford’s question: “Why did no one pick me?” But perhaps some single ladies are so successful that they are reluctant to leave a safe place for the risks of marriage.
—Richard Fogdall, The Sea Ranch, Calif.


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