The Daily Briefing highlights the news of the day and research that reveals the spirit of the day.
The Daily Briefing is a newsletter sent straight to your inbox every morning that provides biblical insight on today's news. This five-minute read gives an overview of the news driving the day and provides Nick Notes. These Notes offer biblical insight of the highlighted article.
Dr. Nick Pitts writes the Daily Briefing each morning. Nick earned his PhD from Dallas Baptist University, where he also serves as the Executive Director of the Institute of Global Engagement. Nick also co-hosts the Point of View radio talk show each Wednesday and frequently appears on Glenn Beck's Think Tank. His op-eds have been published by Huffington Post, Religion News Service, Townhall.com, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and The Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
“The House passed a bill Thursday that would raise the federal minimum wage for the first time in a decade -- but there's little chance the measure will be taken up in the Republican-controlled Senate.
“The bill was a priority for progressives and gives a victory to a movement that's taken nearly seven years to get this far. But in its current form, the bill has no major support from the Republican side… The Raise the Wage Act would bring the federal minimum wage up gradually from $7.25 to $15 by 2025.After that year, the rate will be indexed to the median hourly wage of all workers.”
Nick Note: How Low Can You Go – the Limbo Rock asks it and the minimum wage determines it. Approximately 1.7 million people, or about 2.1 percent of all hourly paid workers, earned at or below the federal minimum wage last year.As you might expect, opinions vary on raising the minimum wage. Some think we should raise it. The take-home pay for a 40-hour-a-week minimum-wage employee, after taxes, adds up to $13,926.38 per year. Raising the minimum wage would directly lift the earnings of 17 million workers and indirectly boost the pay of another 10.3 million. However, others don’t think we should raise it. A recent CBO report found that raising the minimum wage would eliminate nearly 4 millions jobs. Not only do employers fire workers, a recent studyfound they also cut hours for the remaining employees. Automation serves as a reason they can cut hours. A recent paper concluded that when employers have to raise wages, investment in automation follows. Another study found that employers also cut fringe benefits to compensate for higher wages.Opinions vary on the minimum wage but your worth in Christ doesn’t. As Christians, we don’t muzzle the ox (Deut. 25:4, 1 Tim. 5:18). Workers are entitled to appropriate rewards for their labor (1 Cor. 9:9-11). Bosses shouldn’t steal from the workers like Laban but the workers shouldn’t steal from their bosses like Ananias (Gen. 29, Acts 5). While Mr. Market determines the worth of your labor, the cross declares your worth as a person.
“People on social media flooded their feeds with the images morphing their selfies into an older version of themselves, causing the app to go viral… The app now has access to more than 150 million people’s faces and names.”
Nick Note: Your Smiling Face? More like your old face, James Taylor. What a time to be alive, when one moment we express outrage over privacy concerns and the next moment we voluntarily allow a Russian company to thoroughly scan our face. Cities like San Francisco and Oakland have already banned city departments from using facial-recognition technology. China is perfecting this technology to the detriment of their people (click here for an interactive glimpse at China’s efforts). But what is the appeal of FaceApp? Look no further than the magic mirror on the wall in Snow White. In her book Projection and Recollection, Mary Louise von Franz uses the magic mirror in Snow White to make a key point: our need for affirmation. No matter how hard you look, you can’t see past a mirror but you can stare deeply into yourself – reflecting on your past and considering your future. Affirmation in the present has the propensity to quell anxieties concerning the future. FaceApp produces a funny picture that can indirectly bring you comfort but the Scriptures point to a joyful future that can infuse you with hope. The former depicts a perishing version of yourself but the latter depicts a glorious version. A picture may be worth a thousand words but the Scriptures paint a picture that no tongue can tell or eye can see the glory that awaits. (2 Cor. 4:16, 1 Pet. 1:4, 1 Cor. 2:9)
4. Donald Trump to nominate Eugene Scalia, son of late Supreme Court justice, as Labor secretary (USA Today)
“President Donald Trump said Thursday he will nominate Eugene Scalia, son of the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, to lead the Labor Department… The previous Labor secretary, Alex Acosta, resigned last week amid the fallout over a plea deal he oversaw involving wealthy financier Jeffrey Epstein, a sex offender charged with human trafficking girls as young as 14.
“Scalia previously worked as the top lawyer at the Labor Department during the George W. Bush administration, a job he received through a recess appointment. Democrats in control of the Senate at the time did not confirm him, suggesting he could meet with resistance from Democrats again.”
Nick Note: There were a number of big announcements yesterday: a new Top Gun, a movie version of Cats the Musical, and Pres. Trump nominated Eugene Scalia to lead the Labor Department. If confirmed by the Senate, Scalia will serve at the pleasure of the president and seek to advise the president. In the biblical narrative, bad counsel ruined Rehoboam, broke Adam and Eve, and crushed Absalom (1 Kings 12, Gen. 3, 2 Sam. 16). However good counsel restored David, strengthened Apollos, and provided relief for Moses (2 Sam. 12, Ex. 18, Acts 18). Charlie Jones was right: “You’re the same today as you’ll be in five years except for two things: the people you meet and the books you read.”
“People find close friends throughout life, from childhood to retirement, but 21 emerged as the average age people met their best friends in a recent large international survey commissioned by Snap Inc. The social-media company defined a best friend as someone “you share everything with.”
“Variations showed up over the generations, and results in the U.S. skewed a few months younger than the overall: Millennials typically met their best friends at around 17; for baby boomers, the average age was higher at 29 or 30. And, of course, people often have more than one best friend: the study found an average of three or four.”
Nick Note: My Best Friend – Tim McGraw sings it and Ryan Pitts is it. His passion for sports is only exceeded by his compassion for people. He puts up with me and I am grateful for him…most of the time. I digress. Researchindicates it takes 50 hours to move from acquaintance to casual friend, 90 hours to go from casual friend to friend, and more than 200 hours before that person becomes a close friend. In another study, researchers were able to predict the future closeness of friends by how well they performed on a word-guessing game. Like David and Jonathan before him, Jesus made time for his friends (1 Sam. 18, John 15:15). He had one good Father, 3 best friends, 12 good friends, 70 buddies, and 500 acquaintances. The smaller the number, the greater the intimacy. Buddies can bless you, but a best friend shapes you (Pro. 27:17). You give time to your friends but they give you life – an invaluable return on investment.
News You Can Use
2. Dad Edits Cat Into Famous Movie Scenes & The Hilarious Clips Are Sweeping The Internet. (InspireMore)
Nick Note: Watch it here. “If anyone adds to these words, God will add to him the plagues described in this book... (Rev. 22:18-19)”
Nick Note: Watch it here. “Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord. (Eph. 6:4)”