Our Post-Democratic Independence Day: For a Ruthless Critique of Everything

Essays

Dear friends,

Today, after 248 years, can be legitimately described as America’s first post-democratic Fourth of July.

We’ve had plenty of pre-democratic Independence Days. This is because our republic existed for over a century without giving Native and enslaved people, women, and others the right to vote.

But today is something different. It’s on the other side of the presidential office being given dictatorial powers of impunity. The historian Heather Cox Richardson has correctly named that our country has undergone a “coup.”

In honor or infamy of this 4th, my mind goes to our dear old brother Karl Marx. Marx called for “a ruthless critique of everything,” and that’s precisely what I think America needs today.

If you’re allergic to Marx, that’s fine. I disagree with him on plenty of things. But that old scary bearded German has a lot to teach us about our time and its task.

In 1843, when Marx was just 25, he wrote a short but powerful essay entitled “For a Ruthless Criticism of Everything Existing.”.. Read More

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My deepest passion is encouraging others in love. As you stop and think with me, I hope you feel more at home in your humanity, less lonely in what you believe, and fresh courage to love others beyond boundaries. Thanks for reading!

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Flourishing on the Edge of Faith

This book is a passionate meditation on the profound significance of Jesus’s prayer. With years of study, teaching, and peacemaking around the world, Dr. Andrew DeCort uncovers Jesus’s radical vision for human flourishing in the face of suffering and violence.

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Dear American Christian

Essays

Dear American Christian,

Can you imagine your life without America? (If you’re a citizen of another country, kindly insert your own.)

Can you still feel life, liberty, and happiness if you imagine America as part of your past and no longer part of your future?

If you can’t, you’re probably more American than Christian. Your nationality has shaped your humanity more than your spirituality.

It’s time for us to go back to Christianity 101 and remember the very basics:

  1. Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down… Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to practice everything I have commanded you.” (Matthew 24:2; 28:19-20)
  1. Paul wrote, “Our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ.” (Philippians 3:20)
  1. Peter taught, “Dear friends, I urge you, as foreigners and exiles, to abstain from corrupt desires, which wage war against your soul.”
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Do you enjoy Stop & Think? Become a Sustaining Patron with a monthly donation and invest in my work around the world. Gifts are tax-deductible through the Institute for Faith and Flourishing. Yours with gratitude, Andrew

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My deepest passion is encouraging others in love. As you stop and think with me, I hope you feel more at home in your humanity, less lonely in what you believe, and fresh courage to love others beyond boundaries. Thanks for reading!

Now Available for Purchase

Flourishing on the Edge of Faith

This book is a passionate meditation on the profound significance of Jesus’s prayer. With years of study, teaching, and peacemaking around the world, Dr. Andrew DeCort uncovers Jesus’s radical vision for human flourishing in the face of suffering and violence.

View Book

It Hurts So Good: A Story of Unconditional Love

Essays

Dear friends,

This is a story of unconditional love.

On Mother’s Day, my mom told me, “When you entered this world, your daddy was there when you came out.” Starting from that primal moment, my dad was always with me, whether in person or across the distance during my many years of living in Ethiopia.

Joe DeCort holding Andrew DeCort as a baby

Throughout my life, dad always made me feel loved, accepted, and secure. This wasn’t primarily because of the things he told me. I don’t remember him ever saying, “Andrew, I will always love you unconditionally.” Dad didn’t talk this way. It was because of who he was and the way he treated me.

When I was growing up, my dad didn’t have many rules. He didn’t care how I cut my hair. I didn’t need to be home by a certain time, and I often got home in the middle of the night. There weren’t places I couldn’t go, and I was free to explore pubs and clubs in Chicago with my friends... Read More

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Donation = Appreciation

Do you enjoy Stop & Think? Become a Sustaining Patron with a monthly donation and invest in my work around the world. Gifts are tax-deductible through the Institute for Faith and Flourishing. Yours with gratitude, Andrew

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My deepest passion is encouraging others in love. As you stop and think with me, I hope you feel more at home in your humanity, less lonely in what you believe, and fresh courage to love others beyond boundaries. Thanks for reading!

Now Available for Purchase

Flourishing on the Edge of Faith

This book is a passionate meditation on the profound significance of Jesus’s prayer. With years of study, teaching, and peacemaking around the world, Dr. Andrew DeCort uncovers Jesus’s radical vision for human flourishing in the face of suffering and violence.

View Book
Joe DeCort and Andrew DeCort sit together

A Tribute to My Dad (1944-2024): How Smooth You Play

Essays

Dear friends,

Today marks seven days since my dad – Joseph James DeCort Jr. – died (February 9, 1944 – April 27, 2024). It’s a kind of sabbath in this new world with(out) my dad living in it.

I won’t simply call it a world “without” dad, because I don’t believe that. He’s still here, with us, near us — but in a different way that’s more mysterious and difficult to access and discern.

When I walked on the prairie path the day after he died, I felt the wind on my body and told Padre, “I feel like you’re close to me; you’re in the wind now.” And I knew that to be true. I could feel his presence on my skin, even as I often wake up with a dull sense of absence now.

He went home to his Creator a week ago on April 27 at 9:14pm due to cardiac arrest. He had gotten the flu and fell out of bed on April 18... Read More

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Donation = Appreciation

Do you enjoy Stop & Think? Become a Sustaining Patron with a monthly donation and invest in my work around the world. Gifts are tax-deductible through the Institute for Faith and Flourishing. Yours with gratitude, Andrew

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My deepest passion is encouraging others in love. As you stop and think with me, I hope you feel more at home in your humanity, less lonely in what you believe, and fresh courage to love others beyond boundaries. Thanks for reading!

Now Available for Purchase

Flourishing on the Edge of Faith

This book is a passionate meditation on the profound significance of Jesus’s prayer. With years of study, teaching, and peacemaking around the world, Dr. Andrew DeCort uncovers Jesus’s radical vision for human flourishing in the face of suffering and violence.

View Book
Gaza Before and After

Six Months after October 7

Essays

Dear friends,

On October 7, Hamas killed over 1,200 Israelis and others, and kidnapped over 200 people. This was an act of atrocious terrorism. Today marks six months since Israel started militarily devastating Gaza in reaction to Hamas’s violence.

I invite you to consider this very limited summary of the devastation.

Israel’s violence has killed over 33,000 Gazans or 1 out of every 70 image-bearers of God in Gaza. This includes more than 25,000 women and children. What Israel described as its 9/11, Israel has inflicted over 27 times on Gaza.

Israel’s violence has injured over 75,000 Gazans or 1 out every 30 image-bearers of God in Gaza.

Israel’s violence has inflicted “extreme food insecurity” on more than half of Gaza’s 2.3 million people. Some, including children, are starving to death.

Israel’s violence has destroyed or damaged over 50% of Gaza’s infrastructure. Over 60% of homes and 80% of schools have been damaged or destroyed.

Israel’s violence has displaced around 85% of Gaza’s 2.3 million people from their homes... Read More

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Donation = Appreciation

Do you enjoy Stop & Think? Become a Sustaining Patron with a monthly donation and invest in my work around the world. Gifts are tax-deductible through the Institute for Faith and Flourishing. Yours with gratitude, Andrew

Sign Up for the Newsletter


My deepest passion is encouraging others in love. As you stop and think with me, I hope you feel more at home in your humanity, less lonely in what you believe, and fresh courage to love others beyond boundaries. Thanks for reading!

Now Available for Purchase

Flourishing on the Edge of Faith

This book is a passionate meditation on the profound significance of Jesus’s prayer. With years of study, teaching, and peacemaking around the world, Dr. Andrew DeCort uncovers Jesus’s radical vision for human flourishing in the face of suffering and violence.

View Book