from World magazine, 26th march 2011.
in the Q&A reviews with Andy Crouch:
'Pursuing being elite is a terrible idea... Most people who pursue being elite end up being shaped solely by that: They become nothing but elite. I'd much rather have everyone, whatever their prospects for being elite or not, pursue excellence. Excellence is often accompanied by humility, whereas being elite often is not. People who have obtained mastery of certain fields, I've found, are surprisingly humble, because they've become aware of how difficult their work is....
'The key to becoming a serious culture maker is you learn to tell when you played the scale well and when you didn't... It takes 10,000 hours to develop mastery of something...[That] is a great index, because you will not make it to mastery unless you love something. So, the first question: What do you love enough to make it to those 10,000 hours? ...
'For Christians it can't just be a self-discovery process of "What are my deepest desires and how do I fulfill those?" Not instead of that, but in addition to that, we should ask, "Does this vocation take me to a place where the world is in pain?" Christian vocation takes us to a place where our work intersects with the brokenness of the world.'
'Alexander Solzhenitsyn said in his 1978 Harvard University commencement address, "A decline in courage may be the most striking feature that an outside observer notices in the West today. The Western world has lost its civic courage, both as a whole and separately, in each country, in each government, in each political party, and, of course, in the United Nations.... Must one point out that from ancient times a decline in courage has been considered the first symptom of the end?"