It is hard to pick a favorite show, or a show we were most excited about recording.  This show certainly would rank near the top of our favorite shows we've done in the years we have been knocking these shows out on a weekly basis.
Dan came across this documentary by typing in "best documentaries" on google a few months back.  The description made it sound interesting enough.  By the time the documentary was over Dan was floored by the story.  It turns out that we had a few connections to the main figure in the movie, Jay Reinke, and he graciously agreed to come on the show.  If you haven't seen the film (it is on Netflix) you can still listen to this show (we take a break half way through before getting into any spoilers).  Jay is as candid, if not more, than in the film and answers the questions we had about the movie (that many of our friends had as well).  This is a show about one of the best documentaries (winner of a special Jury award at Sundance as well as 11 other awards) we have ever seen, and this was an opportunity to get behind it by having a conversation about the nature of Jay's work with the influx of population to his small town because of the shale boom, a story that took turn after turn, the nature of underdogs, sexuality, compassion, and redemption. Listen and share with a friend.

On today's episode we start by discussing a little bit of the discussion that ensued after our last show (Marriage Morality and the Law) and Jeff's post on the show at the Jagged Word.  Our main topic for the show involves the question that we have received more than any other: what to do when you are at a job you hate.  We talk a lot about the significance and importance of work, career, etc... on this show and so it seemed appropriate to tackle this one, head on.  We do so, primarily by looking to an unlikely source: Hunter S. Thompson.  Thompson once wrote a letter to a young man who was asking him a similar question and we break down Thompson's letter through our sense here at ViW. Enjoy the Show!

Gay marriage, the Supreme Court, and the cultural implications of a changing political landscape is what this show's about.  We recognize that we, once again, are in danger of offending everyone, including many close friends. We have a slightly different take from both the Left and the Right.  Remember, this is not primarily a theological/biblical discussion this week, but instead is primarily about the interplay between church and state, and on that we tend (especially Jeff) to lean libertarian on this matter. Note that, while we get a bit playful (we recorded this on a short evening window between our collective family vacations), and probably reject many of the ways in which you think about this issue, our overall take is complex.  We challenge the idea that Christians should care much about the legal aspects of sexual ethics, and we distinguish law, ethics and theology.  On the other hand, we find some of the concerns of the dissenting justices to be legitimate from a constitutional point of view.  Perhaps the most frustrating piece for our conservative Christian friends is our sense that we hold that there is little reason to believe that the 14th Amendment will be allowed to thwart the basic rights of the 1st Amendment, with the possible exception of some Christian churches and non-profits losing their tax exempt status.  

We call Christians to get back to the business of being a beacon of light in a listless world, rather than cultural bullies.  In any case, we welcome your feedback and are willing to consider blind spots.  But given the number of emails asking for us to address the issue, we figure a candid discussion is in order, even if we lose friends over the matter.  

Finally, the bits of humor on the show are by no means meant to belittle the very serious emotional import this whole matter has for both LGBT and Conservative Christian listeners.  We seek to love and serve all our neighbors, and wish you all the best.  God bless America, and God bless you, dear listener.

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When it comes to American Christian history, and the current phase of the culture wars, the terms "pietism" and "legalism" get lobbed about.  We discuss the history of pietism in Europe and America, and show how understanding the history and beliefs of the old school Pietists can help us understand the tensions today between Christianity and American culture.  The image here is of a conventicle in the tradition of Hans Nielsen Haugee (1771-1824), painted by Adolph Tidemand, 1852.  You can find Dan van Voorhis' lectures on this topic by cl

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This show features  a conversation with the Dean of Christ College, Irvine Dr. Steve Mueller on C.S. Lewis.  Dr. Mueller wrote his doctoral dissertation on Lewis and published a boson the writings of Lewis.
We discuss the nature of "mere" Christianity and its implications for ecumenical dialog as well as the fiction of Lewis and various movie adaptations.  Steve is not only an expert, he was a gracious guest and brought a lot to the table.  If you are interested in Lewis, the nature of confessional Christianity and ecumenicism, or just a good chat with a very learned Dean of theology- give this show a listen. 
(Click on the pictures below to order any of Dr. Mueller's books)

Not a Tame God: Christ in the Writings of C.S. Lewis
Called to Believe: A Brief Introduction to Christian Doctrine
Called to Believe, Teach, and Confess: An Introduction to Doctrinal Theology
Reformation Heritage Commentary on the Book of Hebrews
Explore the history and complexities of historical and contemporary interactions between Christian missions and indigenous cultures. Here's another conversation about our theme: the wrong side of history, but also a turn toward possibilities and a way to get on track.  Spoiler: the answer is love.  But you'll probably need to hear the whole interview to accept that sort of answer without scoffing that such a claim is anything more than a hippy dream.  We don't cover all the bases; after all, this is a vast subject.  But we learn some good stuff here, and hope you will find it stimulating. 

Clarence De Lude III  is a Native Hawaiian, and descendent of Hewahewa, the Kahuna Nui of Kamehameha I who overthrew the old religious system and burned the old temples shortly before missionaries arrived. He serves the Native Hawaiian people on the island of O’ahu, the third largest and most densely populated island comprising the state. Having received his master’s in Lutheran education and serving many years as vice-principal, Clarence is now enrolled in the Cross-Cultural Ministry Center (CMC) Program at Concordia University, Irvine, Calif., leading to ordination.

Tim Norton and his family serve the Navajo Nation – the largest Native nation both in terms of population and area of more than 25,000 square miles. Tim works with Louise Lee (Navajo), who also serves with Lutheran Indian Ministries at Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Church, Navajo, N.M. Tim is enrolled in the Cross-Cultural Ministry Center (CMC) Program at Concordia University, Irvine, Calif., leading to ordination.

Whatever we inherit from the fortunate
We have taken from the defeated
What they had to leave us—a symbol:
A symbol perfected in death.
And all shall be well and
All manner of thing shall be well
By the purification of the motive
In the ground of our beseeching.
T. S. Eliot, "Little Gidding"

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Just in time for his record release on Tuesday, June 9th Sam Outlaw came by the studio to discuss his upcoming album Angeleno.  Sam was kind enough to not only talk about his record (produced by Ry Cooder) but also to dig deep into his life, the nature of making music, and all of the emotional material that goes into the life of a country recording artist.  Sam is a guest who brought it- his stories go deep, and we have a fun but very interesting conversation.  If you're a little kid, your parents might consider a little bit of the material above you, but that's the nature of good, authentic conversation. Enjoy The Show! And find Sam on the 9th in Solana Beach, San Diego Ca, find him on the web at samoutlaw.com, on Facebook and Instagram at samoutlaw and on twitter as @thesamoutlaw

It's summertime! And whether you are on break, taking a vacation, or just looking for some ideas for reading, listening, etc... we have put together a show wherein we discuss the books and music that we recommend, and has been recommended to us by colleagues, friends, and listeners.  It's a lighter show, hopefully it gives you a few ide

Music Recommendations
  1. Barr Brothers
  2. Sufjan Stevens
  3. Xavier Rudd
  4. Handsome Ghost
  5. Punch Brothers
  6. Father John Misty
  7. Sam Outlaw
  8. Waxahatchee
  9. Panda Bear
  10. Matisyahu

Book Recommendations
  1. Phillipp Meyer, The Son
  2. Rob Sheffield, Love is a Mix Tape
  3. John Warwick Montgomery, Gene Edward Veith, Where Christ is Present
  4. Dave Eggers, You Shall Know Our Velocity
  5. J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (or the Philosopher's Stone for our British listeners)
  6. Blake Harris, Console Wars
  7. Dave Ellefson, My Life with Deth
  8. D.F. Wallace, Infinite Jest
  9. David McCullough, Truman
  10. John Keegan, The Face of Battle
  11. Joseph Ellis, Founding Brothers
  12. Jacques Barzun, From Dawn to Decadence
  13. Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible
  14. Rob Chernow, Alexander Hamilton
  15. Carson McCullers, The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter

There are really only two ways this can play out.  Either you are wondering why we would waste our time discussing the obvious (whether humans are causing climate change and whether it is an ethical problem) or you are wondering why we would entertain a conspiracy theory concocted by Marxist industry-haters.  But beyond all the ideology that goes into questions like this, we want to look at the ways in which folks who care about our neighbors around the world can better understand what's going on with the environment and our fellow humans.  Dr. Sean Bignami is a marine biologist who focuses on ocean acidification.  He is on the biology faculty at Concordia University, Irvine.

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On todays episode we continue in the vein from last week's Graduation Special II, but move to the idea of Architecture and Cityscapes, both literal and figurative.  We discuss the history of architecture, primarily city planning, in history (with a hat tip to some rad work done by Margaret Foreman), and in our lives.  What does our city say about our collective selves, and how does our live resemble a city.  Sound strange? We promise it's not.  And Dan teases an idea at the beginning of the show that ultimately the show is how to not die alone. Enjoy the Show.