Author: Chad Lakies

Changing the Mind of a Sheep

Read Time: 7 min.

I like historical fiction—books, movies, TV. I especially like the kind that has a plot based on some kind of shadow agency, secret society, or cabal that is mysteriously at work in the story yet lurk in the background. The Illuminati. The Culper Ring. The Trilateral Commission. All kinds of stories include groups like these meddling in world events, often for the sake of power. The identity of th...[Read More]

Our Golden Age?

Read Time: 5 min.

We tend to think about past times, especially good ones, in terms of a Golden Age. Reflecting on those times often makes us nostalgic. Growing up, I’d often hear older people, using cliched aphorisms, tell about their early life experience. “When I was a kid, I had to walk to school through 2 feet of snow uphill both ways.” Indeed, such sayings were good for a (half-hearted) laugh. But by saying i...[Read More]

Perpetual Long Division

Read Time: 8 min.

If you were gripped with fear when you read that title, don’t worry. We won’t be talking about mathematics here.  Rather, a different kind of division is our concern. Social division. Just last week I saw a Twitter post from a person I really respect. He is the editor of a reputable Christian magazine and has a significant following. I’ve never agreed with him on everything. But he often has ...[Read More]

Making Decisions in a Time of Panic

Read Time: 7 min.

The other day my youngest (toddler) daughter hurt herself while playing outside. My wife and I weren’t immediately sure how bad she had hurt herself, but certain indications made us wonder if we needed urgent care or possibly a visit to the emergency room. But this decision was suddenly more complex than it was a few weeks ago. The current pandemic has caused many of us to face the process of maki...[Read More]

Overcoming the Feeling “I Am Not (Doing) Enough”

Read Time: 7 min.

It is probably safe to say that humans regularly compare themselves with one another. We wonder, for example, if we are as happy, good looking, physically fit, smart, or successful as those around us. We’ve likely been doing this since the beginning of our existence. Yet, it seems in our time we have endless opportunities to compare ourselves with others.  One obvious place we see this is soc...[Read More]

We Are Not Our Plans

Read Time: 6 min.

David Brooks recently observed that moments of suffering help us to realize that all of us think we are “our plans.” Our lives and identity are shaped around what we are planning for ourselves and our futures. Most of the time we take this for granted; we don’t think about it. But moments when our plans are thrown into question and our expectations are dashed, these are the times when we...[Read More]

The Meaning of a Single Hug

Read Time: 5 min.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer is a 20th century martyr. He was killed for his involvement in a conspiracy to kill Adolf Hitler. Prior to his death, he was in Nazi custody for more than two years. Bonhoeffer was a pastor but served most actively as a teacher before his arrest. He spent a majority of that time at Tegel prison in central Berlin. Not far away was the home where he spent much of his youth a...[Read More]

Reclaiming the Holidays

Read Time: 4 min.

During the holiday season, I often get one of two troublesome feelings. First, I think that the whole month-plus is too hectic and too busy. The season feels overscheduled with events and get-togethers that are good and joyful, to be sure, and which I would probably miss if they didn’t happen. But in my more reflective moments, a deeper sense that something is missing creeps into my experience of ...[Read More]

Sufficient, But Not Saving

Read Time: 3 min.

I often notice that a lot of commercials and ads have one big message in common: if you’re not buying or doing or subscribing to or wearing such and such, your life is not as good as it could be. There seems to be almost a moral pressure to consume the advertised thing. It’s easy to wonder if I’m good enough, doing the right thing, living life the right way, or consuming the “right” things. These ...[Read More]

Living in a World of Mutual Display

Read Time: 3 min.

The philosopher Charles Taylor once said that we live in a world of “mutual display.” I’m more and more convinced that he’s right. Whether I like it or not, I’m stuck and complicit in a system that encourages me to judge others according to what brands they’re wearing, what causes they’re supporting, how happy they look, and so much more—all in comparison to myself. And it forces me to ask: am I g...[Read More]

Tolerance of a Deeper Sort

Read Time: 3 min.

As I grew up, I learned that respect comes in different forms. I’m supposed to respect my elders (age has its privileges; assume the older are also wiser). I’m supposed to respect the American flag (don’t let it touch the ground). I’m supposed to respect the wilderness (leave it as if it were untouched). One of my challenges—and perhaps not only mine—is that I have a hard time separating respect f...[Read More]

“Take a chance on me!”

Read Time: 3 min.

A friend of mine who is in the job market just shared a bit of frustration with me: almost every position that is advertised, he said, is requiring 3-5 years of experience. My friend looked me in the eye and asked, point blank with a bit of despair, “how am I supposed to get any experience if I can’t get hired in the first place?” A good question. My friend’s experience brought back my own memorie...[Read More]

  • 1
  • 2