13 Reasons Why, Appreciating Moms, & Complete Freedom from Lust
Wisdom For Your Weekend is your regular installment of what we’ve been reading (and watching) around the web. Presented to you by Chris Pappalardo, with occasional guidance from Pastor J.D., this is our attempt to reflect Proverbs 9:9: “Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be still wiser; teach a righteous man, and he will increase in learning.”
Video of the Week
Is it possible to be totally free from lust? Jeremy Pierre. Dr. Pierre’s first answer here is “no” (but not for the reason you might think). His second answer is yes (and that’s where the real value of this video lies). This is a tremendously helpful perspective on sin, pornography, and the process of Christian maturity.
Articles of the Week
13 Reasons Why, and Its Unintended Consequences, Brooke Fox. By now you’ve probably heard of Netflix’s controversial show, “13 Reasons Why.” Chronicling the aftermath of a teen girl’s suicide, the show aims to shine a light on often ignored issues of bullying, mental illness, sexual assault, and suicide. The show’s creators wanted “13 Reasons Why” to help those who are experiencing many of these difficult realities. Their chief aim appears to have been to start candid conversations that, if neglected, leave many people hurting in the most dangerous possible way—in isolation. We understand and commend their motivation. But as Brooke Fox, a mental health professional, wisely points out here, the show itself has a voice of its own. It unintentionally glamorizes suicide and only brings up traumatic issues long enough to confuse, rather than to enlighten and help those suffering from them. In the end, the unintended consequences of “13 Reasons Why” are, as Brooke Fox puts it, “dangerous, irresponsible, and disturbing.” (For a more passionate—and scathing—critique of the show, Trevin Wax weighs in with 13 Reasons Why Is Deceptive and Destructive).
The Real Tragedy in Jordan Edwards’ Death, Jemar Tisby. On Saturday, Jordan Edwards, a young black teenager, was shot and killed by a police officer in Texas. Jordan was unarmed and didn’t resist arrest. The immediate response to Jordan’s death, unsurprisingly, was outrage. Soon following this outrage were the usual commendations of Jordan’s character. He was a straight-A student, a great athlete, and an all-around likable guy. But as Tisby reminds us, if you think Jordan’s death is tragic because he was a good student, you’re missing the point.
Mom, Do You Feel Appreciated? Paul Tripp. Sunday is Mother’s Day. If you’re just realizing this now, you may still have a little time to reach out to your mom. But this one is directed specifically at all the moms out there. You don’t get enough credit for being God’s primary instrument shaping the worldview and morality of the next generation. (How much would be too much credit for such a task?) If your goal, however, is appreciation, watch out: Nobody wins that game.
10 Practical Ways to Read the Bible More, Chuck Lawless. This should go without saying, but for the sake of thoroughness: You’ll only ever read the Bible more when your heart is filled to overflowing with love for God. Still, even for those of us who love and treasure Scripture, we often find it challenging to consistently take it in. If your obstacles are more pragmatic than spiritual, this simple list will take you far. I (Chris) have just recently picked up on #4, #5, and #7 (Hosea, if you were curious).
On the Lighter Side
Title of the Song, Da Vinci’s Notebook. Naïve expression of love. Reluctance to accept that you are gone. Request to turn back time and rectify my wrongs. Etc.