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Whatever You Do, Do Not “Just Do It”

I haven’t put my hand over my heart for the pledge of allegiance or spoken its words since grade school. I’m not from an Anabaptist tradition, and I call East Texas home, so displays of nationalistic pride are simply part of my inborn religious habitat. Yet, to my high-school mind, I quite plainly did not pledge my allegiance to the flag of the United States of America. Allegiance was a zero-sum game, and God was the winner. No surprise, experience has given rise to a more nuanced view of the world. Yet, nuance—complexity—requires some way of navigating the dilemmas of non-zero-sum games, when winning and losing are hard to sort. In the biblical tradition, we call this capacity for complexity…
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