All posts by Jim Mullins
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Entrepreneurship, Creativity, and the Story of Tempe..

October 22, 2014 1 Comment 8

Charles T. Hayden was a risk-taker. After initial business success in 1850s, he decided to leave his comfortable home in Missouri and head west to the dangerous, hot, and sparsely populated state of Arizona. He landed in Tucson and started a successful freighting company that brought supplies to rugged men in mining camps and military posts. One day in the 1860s, Hayden went on a business trip, traveling from Tucson to Prescott. His trip was delayed when he reached the edge of the Salt River, in the place that we now call Tempe Town Lake. It might be hard for us to imagine, but the river was raging, and it was too dangerous for Hayden to cross to the other side. He was delayed on the banks of the uncultivated land that would eventually become the city of Tempe. Hayden camped next to the river for two days. Being the risk-taker that he was, he would eventually pass through the raging river, but the seed of a greater challenge was planted in his mind during his two-day unintentional retreat. One afternoon, he climbed to the top of what we know as A Mountain and looked out at the dusty plot of land at the foot of the hill. Most people would have seen nothing but barrenness and obstacles, but Hayden saw opportunity. He saw the city of Tempe. Tempe-1870 As Hayden stood on the peak of A Mountain, he envisioned businesses, canal systems, river ferries, agricultural opportunities, and schools. So he decided to take another risk, purchasing the 160 acres that now constitute downtown Tempe. He helped start the city, its initial economy, and helped give rise to what is now Arizona State University. A growing skyline now stands on the edge of the Salt River, the...

Charles T. Hayden was a risk-taker. After initial business success in 1850s, he decided to leave his comfortable home in Missouri and head west to the dangerous, hot, and sparsely populated state of Arizona. He landed in Tucson and started a successful freighting company that brought supplies to rugged men in mining camps and military posts. One day in the 1860s, Hayden went on a business trip, traveling from Tucson to Prescott. His trip was delayed when he reached the edge of the Salt River, in the place that we now call Tempe Town Lake. It might be hard for us to imagine, but the river was raging, and it was too dangerous for Hayden to cross to the other side. He was delayed on the banks of the uncultivated land that would eventually become the city of Tempe. Hayden camped next to the river for two days. Being the risk-taker that he was, he would eventually pass through the raging river, but the seed of a greater challenge was planted in his mind during his two-day unintentional retreat. One afternoon, he climbed to the top of what we know as A Mountain and looked out at the dusty plot of land at...

Charles T. Hayden was a risk-taker. After initial business success in 1850s, he decided to leave his comfortable home in Missouri and head west to the dangerous, hot, and sparsely populated state of Arizona. He landed in Tucson and started a successful freighting company that brought supplies to rugged men in mining camps and military posts. One day in the 1860s, Hayden went on a business trip, traveling from Tucson to Prescott. His trip was delayed when he reached the edge of the Salt River, in the place that we now call Tempe Town Lake. It might be hard for us to...

Charles T. Hayden was a risk-taker. After initial business success in 1850s, he decided to leave his comfortable home in Missouri and head west to the dangerous, hot, and sparsely populated state of Arizona. He landed in Tucson and started a successful freighting company that brought supplies to rugged men in...

Charles T. Hayden was a risk-taker. After initial business success in 1850s, he decided to leave his comfortable home in Missouri and head west to the...

Charles T. Hayden was a risk-taker. After initial business success in 1850s, he decided to leave his comfortable home in Missouri and head west to the dangerous, hot, and sparsely populated state of Arizona. He landed in Tucson and started a successful freighting company that brought supplies to rugged men in mining camps and military posts. One day in the 1860s, Hayden went on a business trip, traveling from Tucson to Prescott. His trip was delayed when he reached the edge of the Salt River, in the place that we now call Tempe Town Lake. It might be hard for us to...

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Good News About Environmental Stewardship..

September 9, 2014 No Comments 5

(This is the fourth post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on faith and environmental stewardship. Read Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.) The curse of sin is like a haboob. It comprehensively sweeps through, covers everything with its nastiness, and distorts the vision of everyone in its path. When sin entered the world through human rebellion in Genesis 3, it not only affected our spiritual lives, but had serious ramifications for all aspects the physical creation. The perfectly balanced systems of God’s creation that were intended to teem and flourish began to fall apart and became a threat to human flourishing. Now, the physical world can be dangerous, but God pushes back so many of the effects of sin through the human work of building, innovating, and other types of  “re-arranging” of the environment. By design, humans always have an impact on the environment, and that should be a good thing. But as we know, that’s not always the case. We often have a detrimental impact on God’s world, because sin has seeped into our hearts and minds. Human decision making was greatly affected by the Fall and the entrance of sin into the world. The very humanity that was created to steward God’s world, to help it flourish, was drawn toward idolatry and injustice, and these sins have a devastating effect on all aspects of God’s good world. For example, the sin of greed can often lead companies to be careless with the disposal of harmful chemicals, polluting our rivers and having a negative impact on the lives of plants, animals, and humans alike. Furthermore, making an idol out of efficiency can lead to short-term planning and development policies that lead to the extinction of whole species of plants and animals that God has created. Sin affects the physical creation, but God goes...

(This is the fourth post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on faith and environmental stewardship. Read Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.) The curse of sin is like a haboob. It comprehensively sweeps through, covers everything with its nastiness, and distorts the vision of everyone in its path. When sin entered the world through human rebellion in Genesis 3, it not only affected our spiritual lives, but had serious ramifications for all aspects the physical creation. The perfectly balanced systems of God’s creation that were intended to teem and flourish began to fall apart and became a threat to human flourishing. Now, the physical world can be dangerous, but God pushes back so many of the effects of sin through the human work of building, innovating, and other types of  “re-arranging” of the environment. By design, humans always have an impact on the environment, and that should be a good thing. But as we know, that’s not always the case. We often have a detrimental impact on God’s world, because sin has seeped into our hearts and minds. Human decision making was greatly affected by the Fall and the entrance of sin into the world. The very humanity that was created to...

(This is the fourth post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on faith and environmental stewardship. Read Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.) The curse of sin is like a haboob. It comprehensively sweeps through, covers everything with its nastiness, and distorts the vision of everyone in its path. When sin entered the world through human rebellion in Genesis 3, it not only affected our spiritual lives, but had serious ramifications for all aspects the physical creation. The perfectly balanced systems of God’s creation that were intended to teem and flourish began to fall apart and became a threat to...

(This is the fourth post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on faith and environmental stewardship. Read Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.) The curse of sin is like a haboob. It comprehensively sweeps through, covers everything with its nastiness, and distorts the vision of everyone in its path. When...

(This is the fourth post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on faith and environmental stewardship. Read Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.) The...

(This is the fourth post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on faith and environmental stewardship. Read Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.) The curse of sin is like a haboob. It comprehensively sweeps through, covers everything with its nastiness, and distorts the vision of everyone in its path. When sin entered the world through human rebellion in Genesis 3, it not only affected our spiritual lives, but had serious ramifications for all aspects the physical creation. The perfectly balanced systems of God’s creation that were intended to teem and flourish began to fall apart and became a threat to...

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Created and Called..

August 14, 2014 No Comments 5

(This is the third post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on environmental stewardship. Read Part 1 and Part 2.) Environmental stewardship isn’t an elective reserved for the granola Christians, but it’s an integral part of being human—and being obedient to God. Plants, animals, and humans are all created by God, but are distinct. They are not the same thing, nor do they carry the same amount of value. Humans are unique among the created order, because humans are image bearers of God. Many people resist the idea of environmental stewardship, because they would rather spend their time, talents, and treasure “helping people rather than trees.” This is a false dichotomy for a number of reasons. First, humans need trees in order to survive, so to plant a tree is to care for other people. (This will be the focus of the next post in this series.) Second, humans were created as stewards of God’s creation. To care for plants, animals, water, and land is an integral part of our experience as humans, as image-bearers. Ignoring our call from God to care for the earth is actually de-humanizing. Genesis 2:15 says, “The LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it.” From this verse we see that creation care is a vital part of being human, a reason why we were created. We have been given the privilege of not just looking out for our own interests, but for seeking the flourishing of every creature in God’s garden. We see God’s concern for creation, and his mandate for his people to care for creation, reflected not only in the mandates of Genesis 1 and 2, but also in many of the laws he gave to his people. For example, scripture explicitly commands: To not pollute the land:...

(This is the third post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on environmental stewardship. Read Part 1 and Part 2.) Environmental stewardship isn’t an elective reserved for the granola Christians, but it’s an integral part of being human—and being obedient to God. Plants, animals, and humans are all created by God, but are distinct. They are not the same thing, nor do they carry the same amount of value. Humans are unique among the created order, because humans are image bearers of God. Many people resist the idea of environmental stewardship, because they would rather spend their time, talents, and treasure “helping people rather than trees.” This is a false dichotomy for a number of reasons. First, humans need trees in order to survive, so to plant a tree is to care for other people. (This will be the focus of the next post in this series.) Second, humans were created as stewards of God’s creation. To care for plants, animals, water, and land is an integral part of our experience as humans, as image-bearers. Ignoring our call from God to care for the earth is actually de-humanizing. Genesis 2:15 says, “The LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of...

(This is the third post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on environmental stewardship. Read Part 1 and Part 2.) Environmental stewardship isn’t an elective reserved for the granola Christians, but it’s an integral part of being human—and being obedient to God. Plants, animals, and humans are all created by God, but are distinct. They are not the same thing, nor do they carry the same amount of value. Humans are unique among the created order, because humans are image bearers of God. Many people resist the idea of environmental stewardship, because they would rather spend their time, talents, and treasure “helping people...

(This is the third post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on environmental stewardship. Read Part 1 and Part 2.) Environmental stewardship isn’t an elective reserved for the granola Christians, but it’s an integral part of being human—and being obedient to God. Plants, animals, and humans are all created by God, but...

(This is the third post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on environmental stewardship. Read Part 1 and Part 2.) Environmental stewardship isn’t an elective reserved...

(This is the third post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on environmental stewardship. Read Part 1 and Part 2.) Environmental stewardship isn’t an elective reserved for the granola Christians, but it’s an integral part of being human—and being obedient to God. Plants, animals, and humans are all created by God, but are distinct. They are not the same thing, nor do they carry the same amount of value. Humans are unique among the created order, because humans are image bearers of God. Many people resist the idea of environmental stewardship, because they would rather spend their time, talents, and treasure “helping people...

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From Microbes to Mexican Wolves..

August 1, 2014 1 Comment 3

(This is the second post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on environmental stewardship. Read Part 1.) You wake up, eat some eggs for breakfast, spend time reading scripture, take a shower, put on clothes, get into your car, and drive off to work or school—all of this before 8 AM. God is the owner of the chicken that laid those eggs for your breakfast, the tree from which the paper in your Bible was made, the water that poured through your shower drain, the soil of the cotton farm that provided fabric for your t-shirt, and the air outside of your car’s exhaust pipe. Everything belongs to God. It’s his, not ours. This is the first thing we must acknowledge if we are to be faithful stewards of his creation. It’s important that we watch documentaries, read statistics, and reflect on the very specific issues that are connected to the condition of the earth. However, we must first and foremost understand why we should care for the environment. There are many robust theological reasons for this, but we must start with the reality that the world belongs to God, not us. We get the privilege of being stewards. Two Dangers Rivers, trees, soil, and animals are good, but they are not God. Centering our lives around any of these things is what the Bible calls idolatry and this greatly dishonors God. When discussing topics like environmental stewardship, it’s vital to acknowledge the distinction between the creation and the Creator. However, a lack of respect and care for creation is often the fruit of a different kind of idolatry: self-worship. Instead of idolizing nature, we end up worshiping ourselves, acting as if we are the owners of the world and we can do whatever we want with the physical creation. This is a human-centered view of...

(This is the second post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on environmental stewardship. Read Part 1.) You wake up, eat some eggs for breakfast, spend time reading scripture, take a shower, put on clothes, get into your car, and drive off to work or school—all of this before 8 AM. God is the owner of the chicken that laid those eggs for your breakfast, the tree from which the paper in your Bible was made, the water that poured through your shower drain, the soil of the cotton farm that provided fabric for your t-shirt, and the air outside of your car’s exhaust pipe. Everything belongs to God. It’s his, not ours. This is the first thing we must acknowledge if we are to be faithful stewards of his creation. It’s important that we watch documentaries, read statistics, and reflect on the very specific issues that are connected to the condition of the earth. However, we must first and foremost understand why we should care for the environment. There are many robust theological reasons for this, but we must start with the reality that the world belongs to God, not us. We get the privilege of being stewards. Two Dangers Rivers, trees, soil, and...

(This is the second post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on environmental stewardship. Read Part 1.) You wake up, eat some eggs for breakfast, spend time reading scripture, take a shower, put on clothes, get into your car, and drive off to work or school—all of this before 8 AM. God is the owner of the chicken that laid those eggs for your breakfast, the tree from which the paper in your Bible was made, the water that poured through your shower drain, the soil of the cotton farm that provided fabric for your t-shirt, and the air outside of...

(This is the second post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on environmental stewardship. Read Part 1.) You wake up, eat some eggs for breakfast, spend time reading scripture, take a shower, put on clothes, get into your car, and drive off to work or school—all of this before 8...

(This is the second post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on environmental stewardship. Read Part 1.) You wake up, eat some eggs for breakfast,...

(This is the second post in a series from contributor Jim Mullins on environmental stewardship. Read Part 1.) You wake up, eat some eggs for breakfast, spend time reading scripture, take a shower, put on clothes, get into your car, and drive off to work or school—all of this before 8 AM. God is the owner of the chicken that laid those eggs for your breakfast, the tree from which the paper in your Bible was made, the water that poured through your shower drain, the soil of the cotton farm that provided fabric for your t-shirt, and the air outside of...

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Why Environmental Stewardship Matters..

July 14, 2014 3 Comments 4

It was my first time at church. Ever. My parents must have felt guilty about something, because they had the sudden urge to attend church one hot summer day in 1992. It was one of the few times I remember visiting a Sunday school class as a child. I found myself feeling awkward as a 10-year old who didn’t understand most of the words and didn't know any of the people. The activity for our class was to write out a prayer on a decorative piece of paper. Not knowing much about prayer, I had to draw on the limited areas of knowledge I had as a child of the early 90s: the Gulf War, science class, baseball, and girls. Here was my prayer: “Dear God, Thank you for food, water, shelter, space, love, and a wonderful world. Please kill Saddam Hussein. Please let me marry Jill from my baseball team. Amen.” I’m fully aware that this is a creepy prayer for a ten-year-old. The teachers were rightly concerned, but about the wrong things. When I explained that my line about food, water, shelter, and space came from my science class and that these things made up the different parts of an animal’s habitat, they responded by telling me that I needed to make my prayer “more spiritual.” They didn’t comment on my hawkish foreign policy. That incident stuck with me. Years later, when I came to know and love Christ, I assumed that when I started to read the Bible, I would read a spiritual book that was ambivalent toward this physical world. I didn’t expect to find a verse that said, “Thou shall not recycle, but thou shall drown baby seals in in a puddle of motor oil.”  Rather, I expected to find a message about a God that cared exclusively about spiritual...

It was my first time at church. Ever. My parents must have felt guilty about something, because they had the sudden urge to attend church one hot summer day in 1992. It was one of the few times I remember visiting a Sunday school class as a child. I found myself feeling awkward as a 10-year old who didn’t understand most of the words and didn't know any of the people. The activity for our class was to write out a prayer on a decorative piece of paper. Not knowing much about prayer, I had to draw on the limited areas of knowledge I had as a child of the early 90s: the Gulf War, science class, baseball, and girls. Here was my prayer: “Dear God, Thank you for food, water, shelter, space, love, and a wonderful world. Please kill Saddam Hussein. Please let me marry Jill from my baseball team. Amen.” I’m fully aware that this is a creepy prayer for a ten-year-old. The teachers were rightly concerned, but about the wrong things. When I explained that my line about food, water, shelter, and space came from my science class and that these things made up the different parts of an animal’s habitat,...

It was my first time at church. Ever. My parents must have felt guilty about something, because they had the sudden urge to attend church one hot summer day in 1992. It was one of the few times I remember visiting a Sunday school class as a child. I found myself feeling awkward as a 10-year old who didn’t understand most of the words and didn't know any of the people. The activity for our class was to write out a prayer on a decorative piece of paper. Not knowing much about prayer, I had to draw on the limited areas of...

It was my first time at church. Ever. My parents must have felt guilty about something, because they had the sudden urge to attend church one hot summer day in 1992. It was one of the few times I remember visiting a Sunday school class as a child. I found myself...

It was my first time at church. Ever. My parents must have felt guilty about something, because they had the sudden urge to attend church one...

It was my first time at church. Ever. My parents must have felt guilty about something, because they had the sudden urge to attend church one hot summer day in 1992. It was one of the few times I remember visiting a Sunday school class as a child. I found myself feeling awkward as a 10-year old who didn’t understand most of the words and didn't know any of the people. The activity for our class was to write out a prayer on a decorative piece of paper. Not knowing much about prayer, I had to draw on the limited areas of...

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