Thursday, December 06, 2007
I won't get into the controversy, mostly because I haven't seen the movie and have little input to give (there's a novel idea). Yes, the author of the book is a very outspoken critic of Christianity and an equally outspoken Athiest. And apparently the later books in the series have some blatant attacks on the Christian faith.
But come on, is our God that we serve so small that we're scared of a little fantasy film? God is much bigger than that. Sure, we should use some caution. How about talking to our kids, if we see the movie with them, and highlighting some of the thinking that's there that might be contrary to our faith (those who have seen it have said this movie has little of that sort of thing in there....its just a movie). And yes, I'm aware that the movie might just get kids interested in the books. I hoped that might happen with the Narnia film, so I guess it works both ways.
Just sayin', perhaps we should catch it on video or at the cheap theater, see for ourselves, and then decide. Regardless, Christianity Today had a bit to add to the conversation, so check it out. The "Fear Not The Compass" tag is actually from them...not my original creation. Read the article and see the film for yourself (or not...)
Really like this one a lot. The theme for this one was "Diversity." There is a website called Woot. No idea what it means, but once a day at woot.com they sell an item. Same item all day, until they run out. Shipping always $5. Kinda fun. But they started a woot.shirt deal, and the shirts are limited run, and designed by woot users as sort of a contest. Go there, look at the selections, and enjoy. Some are more "concept" designs that might leave you scratching your head. OK, so some do for me. But this one made me laugh, and I sorta wish I had it.....hint...I wear a 2X for comfort....Last but not least, another Woot offering. This one is called "Nobody's Perfect." Wish I had thought of that as the title of this blog and used a logo like that. Well done....well, almost.
Monday, December 03, 2007
Monday, November 12, 2007
I've become quite a Derek Bell fan. He was one of the original members of a group called Caedmon's Call, but he's sort of been on his own for some time now. His music tends to fall more in the category of art than just catchy pop tunes. But its his lyrics that really set him apart. His album Mockingbird was just terrific, and I'm enjoying his new CD entitled The Ringing Bell. Apparently, one of his tunes made it onto last week's Grey's Anatomy, a show I have seen before but have sort of steered away from. But they play some good music from time to time. Click here to go to his myspace page and listen to a couple of songs. The song "Name" is the one in the TV show. Not sure if you can find it or not, but A Savior on Capital Hill is one of my current favorites. He has a way of cutting to the chase with his lyrics, and with this song, he pulls no punches (and probably doesn't win a lot of fans in certain circles). Check him out. Here's the lyrics to one of my favorite, to-the-point songs from Mockingbird, entitled "King & A Kingdom"
who's your brother, who's your sister
you just walked passed him
i think you missed her
as we're all migrating to the place where our father lives
'cause we married in to a family of immigrants
(chorus)my first allegiance is not to a flag, a country, or a man
my first allegiance is not to democracy or blood
it's to a king & a kingdom
(vs. 2)there are two great lies that i’ve heard:
“the day you eat of the fruit of that tree, you will not surely die”
and that Jesus Christ was a white, middle-class republican
and if you wanna be saved you have to learn to be like Him
(bridge)but nothing unifies like a common enemy
and we’ve got one, sure as hell
but he may be living in your house
he may be raising up your kids
he may be sleeping with your wife
oh no, he may not look like you think
Friday, November 09, 2007
"Pat Robertson's endorsement of Rudy Giuliani for president is simply astonishing. Robertson - the television preacher who founded the 700 Club and once ran for president himself - has made opposition to abortion and same-sex marriage his political north star and has been a relentless champion of traditional marriage and family values.
Remember Robertson's merciless attacks on President Bill Clinton's lapses of sexual morality with Monica Lewinsky? Or his comments about how the 9/11 attacks were the result of America's tolerance for homosexuals and abortion? Now Robertson isfor Rudy, a thrice-married adulterous husband, who is estranged from his own childrenand is both pro-choice and pro-gay rights. According to Robertson's twisted moral logic, forgiving the social conservative shortcomings of Republicans is a Christian virtue, so long as the same virtue is never applied to Democrats. But Pat thinks Rudy can beat Hillary, and Pat really cares about winning for the Republicans.
What exactly goes on in Pat Robertson's head has puzzled many of us for a long time. This endorsement ranks as one of the most unprincipled in recent political memory. Maybe principles never mattered much to Pat Robertson after all. Perhaps the pro-business economic conservatism of the Republican Party was always more important to the televangelist than saving unborn lives. Robertson's long-standing support of murderous Liberian dictator Charles Taylor, and his diamond investments thanks to Zairian dictator Mobutu Sese Seko speak louder than words when it comes to Robertson's ethic of life. And that's not to mention the more than $400 million Robertson's empire made when he sold his International Family Network to Rupert Murdoch, after building it on tax-deductible contributions of thousands of CBN donors, many of modest means. He has been putting profits over principles for years.
Richard Land, spokesman for the Southern Baptist Convention, has taken a more consistent position. Land has clearly said that he won't support Giuliani if he becomes the Republican nominee, explaining in a recent Newsweek interview, "I'm not willing or able to violate my moral conscience. It would be like asking an African American to choose between Strom Thurmond and George Wallace, or asking Abe Lincoln to vote for a pro-slavery candidate. I personally can't do it." Land predicts that many social conservatives will just sit out this election if the Republicans decide to run Rudy. That's called standing for principle.
Pat Robertson clearly has taken another position. His endorsement of Rudy Giuliani will seem to many to be unprincipled hypocrisy."
I guess it begs the question, why does anybody need to endorse anybody? If there are people out there (and there are) who are just sitting around waiting anxiously for who Robertson et al or any Christian talking head is going to “endorse,” aren’t we in more trouble than its worth? Who really cares who Robertson is endorsing, anyway? Looks to me like there’s no clear cut “perfect” candidate – they all have some baggage or something that someone isn’t going to like (some of these aforementioned 'Christian talking heads' aren't going to like ANY candidate, or at least can find something wrong with them all).
BTW, I’m still a believer that Jesus isn’t coming back on Air Force One. It’s not that I don’t care who the President is – in fact, I found myself “post-city election” caring a great deal that we’ve run off the mayor in the local election this week that actually made a difference in this town and elected some guy whose only obvious qualification is the "D" next to his name. What does he, or any candidate for US President, think about abortion? As I’ve said before, not sure it matters. (the only people that do seem to want it to matter are on the far right wing.... seems they tend to overlook all of the other injustices in our nation/world that the Bible speaks very clearly about and we focus on only this one issue.) We’ve enjoyed more Republican pro-life presidents in my lifetime than Democrats, and nothing has changed. Nothing. Sure, we fight for the right to put our token supreme court people in place. But nothing has changed. Instead, if we were focusing our efforts not on a) bashing candidates and/or other Christians, b) using the funds we spend to get Candidate X elected on something important and God ordained like, oh, maybe EVANGELISM, and c) getting about the business of actually making a difference in the country we live in and not just relying on government to always find the solutions that the Church already knows but isn’t doing…….then we might be onto something!
As always, just some random thoughts. I speak for no one but myself, so the views expressed here may or may not represent the views of management…
This test only has one question, but it's a very important one. By giving an honest answer, you will discover where you stand morally.
The test features an unlikely, completely fictional situation in which you will have to make a decision. Remember that your answer needs to be honest, yet spontaneous. Please
scroll down slowly and give due consideration to each line.
You are in Florida , Miami to be specific. There is chaos all around you caused by a hurricane with severe flooding. This is a flood of biblical proportions.
You are a photojournalist working for a major newspaper, and you're caught in the middle of this epic disaster. The situation is nearly hopeless. You're trying to shoot career-making photos. There are houses and people swirling around you, some disappearing under the water. Nature is unleashing all of its destructive furor.
THE TEST: Suddenly you see a woman in the water. She is fighting for her life, trying not to be taken down with the debris. You move closer. Somehow the woman looks familiar. You suddenly realize who it is. It's Hillary Clinton! At the same time you notice that the raging waters are about to take her under forever.
You have two options: You can save the life of Hillary Clinton or you can shoot a dramatic Pulitzer Prize winning photo, documenting the death of one of the world's most powerful and brilliant women.
THE QUESTION: Here's the question, and please give an honest answer....Would you select high contrast color film, or would you go with the classic simplicity of black and white?
(OK, so its kinda mean....but I admit I chuckled at the ending. Doesn't mean I wouldn't attempt to save. Just that the conclusion went somewhere I wasn't expecting...)
Tuesday, November 06, 2007
Audio isn't great, probably from a camera phone. But very cool. Relient K is a lot of fun, and they came up with a song about one of my fave shows....
Here are the lyrics since it's kinda hard to hear
Michael Scott, Pam & Jim
You've got me glued to my television
Angela, you're way to cute
To be messing around with someone like Dwight Schrute
Relient K and the Football Hall of Fame are in Canton
Won't someone please, transfer us to Scranton
We just wasted....one minute and 57 seconds...of the show...
Monday, November 05, 2007
Woman leaves Wall Street to teach convicts
Had a chance to hear Catherine Rohr at the Catalyst conference in early October. Was very impressed with her story, and this short MSNBC clip sums it up well. You can find out more about her unique approach to prison ministry at http://www.prisonentrepreneurship.org/
Thursday, October 25, 2007
Recently, JK Rowling, the billionaire genius who wrote these books and is riding her broom all the way to the bank, told an audience somewhere that one of the main characters in the books (and movies) is gay. This never came out in any of the stories, but is only a concoction in her literary mind.
Well, its her story, and she can make the characters look, sound, and behave however she wants. That's what authors do. But isn't it odd that some 4 months or so after the release of the last book, she comes out with this little nugget of info that a casual reading of the books doesn't expose? Just seems a little pointless to bring it up anyway, but the timing is what strikes me most. Funny, she didn't bother to point that out earlier, like between, oh, say, books 3 and 4. When people are standing in line to buy each new book as it comes out and kids are pulling all-nighters to read & find out what happens next. No, lets keep that nugget a secret. After all, no need to discourage anyone from buying, right? No need to give those way out on the Christian right even more fuel for their fire, right?
Don't get me wrong. It wouldn't change the story line (and didn't), and she and the publishers would still be billionaires (they are). But why let the cat out of the bag now (or the Dumbledore out of the closet). Just odd, pointless, and a bit shady, me thinks.
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
1. You are wanting to live with less so you can give more and looking for ways to be more generous to those in need.
2. You care about the issues of poverty and social justice and want to bring awareness to these important issues.
There are other levels, which is where the older, paid-for car comes into play. I'm a member, though my car isn't exactly "junky" yet (it will be....I always get them there). It is at least 10 years old, etc. Check it out.....good guys and a good thing.
Monday, October 22, 2007
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Monday, October 15, 2007
I started reading this little book and couldn't put it down. It's a little edgy (not your typical Christian Book fare) and gets to the heart of the issue of integrity, how to protect it, and what happens when we don't. Would be great to work through it with a partner or a group. Highly recommend you check it out. Written by Jud Wilhite, a pastor out in Vegas, and Mike Foster, founder of XXXChurch, a ministry that helps those struggling with addiction to pornography. Check them out at http://www.deadlyviper.org/
- Had a blast speaking for a week called Know Sweat, hosted by CIY on the campus of Milligan College in Johnson City, TN. Beautiful place, and met some nifty folks.
- Had 2 separate weeks of vacation; one at a lake in north-central Indiana, one smack dab on the ocean on Emerald Isle, NC.
- Enjoyed my son's marching band season.....they were the 2007 Indiana State Fair Band Day champions out of 50 bands. Very cool...actually, it was very hot - over 100 degrees that day...
- Fortunate to get to attend one of my favorite events of the year called Catalyst just last week down in Atlanta, GA. Unbelievable music, challenge, worship, and fun. Good to reconnect with some old friends, too.
- OK, so a lot more happened in between. But that is a recap. Its been busy, and I hope to wax eloquent more often.....
Wednesday, July 25, 2007
Tuesday, July 24, 2007
Thursday, July 12, 2007
Prompted by the ubiquitous bracelets and bumper stickers, many Christians are asking (or being annoyed by) the question, “What Would Jesus Do?” Thanks to the creative folks at the Evangelical Environmental Network, we’ve also been encouraged to ask, “What Would Jesus Drive?”
So here’s another pithy iteration to ponder: “Where Would Jesus Live?”
If you’re like most Christians concerned about justice and peace, “the suburbs” would probably not appear in your answer. You might say the city, where Jesus could minister to the poor and the oppressed and walk downtown to preach to corrupt politicians. Or perhaps you think of the country, where he and his disciples could raise organic tomatoes and share their free-range chickens with the hungry. But Jesus in a split-level, mowing his lawn on Saturdays and waving to the neighbor kids on their trampoline? Hmmmmmm....
Check out the rest of the article. I found it rather insightful.
Monday, June 25, 2007
Today, however, he's a controversial lightening rod. Partly because he highlights the hard truths of Scripture. He isn't afraid to take on the likes of Dobson et al and their "take" that there are only 2 key moral issues facing us today: abortion & homosexuality. Not that those aren't key issues, but come on, the only issues? What about the thousands of references in scripture about the poor? What about the epidemic of slavery in our world, which is a bigger problem today than in the history of the world? There are a plethora of other concerns that Wallis brings to the front, including the environment, the AIDS pandemic in Africa, the genocide that's happening in places like Darfur (go ahead...quiz the typical Christian - where's Darfur, and what's going on there, anyway?). Wallis isn't afraid to say "hey, the Bible has a lot to say about these things too...maybe even more than the couple of issues that we somehow weave into every major political campaign.
- Transformation is not just a turning from, but a turning to
- What does it mean to be different from the world and still transform it?
- Our evangelism often answers a question that nobody else is asking.
- Does the way you and I live raise questions?
- The Hebrew mindset - truth isn't really truth until it affects the way we live
- For most of us, we have to LIVE our way to a new way of THINKING. We assume we can THINK our way to a new kind of LIVING, and that seldom works.
He also spoke at the large evening session, which you can find here. Scroll through some of the preliminary stuff to get to his talk.
Saturday, June 23, 2007
This was an interesting read...I couldn't put it down. What does an outsider, particularly in this case an athiest, think about "church" as we know it? We spend so much time & energy hoping non-believers will come to our churches & check us out. But what do they walk away with when they come? Here's the description from Books-A-Million:
Is this what Jesus told you guys to do?
Light shows, fog machines, worship bands, and offering plates - is this what Jesus intended?
Atheist Matt Casper wants to know.
In 2006, Jim Henderson, veteran Christian and director of Off The Map, hired Casper to join him in visiting twelve of Americas best- and least-known churches, including Rick Warrens Saddleback and Joel Osteens Lakewood. Week after week, this spiritual odd couple attended services at churches all over the country and documented their experiences at and reactions to each one. Along the way, they found the real value of their journey in the open and authentic friendship that developed as
they talked, questioned, joked, and most importantlylistened.
Follow along with Jim and Casper on their visits, and eavesdrop as they discuss what they found. Jim and Caspers articulate, sometimes humorous, and always
insightful dialogue offers Christians a new view of an environment in which weve
become overly comfortable: the church. And it models an important transition
from defending the faith to defending the space"relational" space for authentic,
respectful dialogue and friendship with nonbelievers.
Another author that I've read before is Anne Lamott. Her Traveling Mercies - Some Thoughts On Faith is a favorite of mine. She's known for her honest approach to life and faith. The book I read is called Plan B: Further Thoughts on Faith. Anne is NOT for everyone. Her language is often salty, and that may very well keep many readers from catching the meaning of her articles. She also isn't a big fan of W, and she doesn't hide that at all. I don't like everything she says, but she has a unique perspective.
Lastly, I've been trying to get to Steve Saint's End of the Spear for some time. I finally dove in, and it was also very good. Steve's dad Nate was one of the 5 missionaries killed by Aucas in the Ecuadorean rain forest over 50 years ago. I heard Steve speak a couple of months ago, and got to speak with him briefly. Very much enjoyed the book, and if you're looking for a challenging book that really makes you think about the world, God's love for all of us, and our answer to God's call on our lives, this one is worth your time. I mentioned Steve in a post awhile back, and you can find it easily by scrolling back to April or May...
Monday, June 11, 2007
- In The Presence of My Enemies by Gracia Burnham. Martin & Gracia Burnham were missionaries in the Philippines. They were abducted along with several others while enjoying their anniversary at a resort. Their captors were the Abu Sayef, a branch of Al Quieda that has training camps & wrecks havoc in the Philippine jungle. Gracia survived the one year of captivity; Martin was killed during the rescue attempt. Amazing story, highly recommendable!
- Holy Discontent by Bill Hybels. Actually heard this message a couple of years ago, and I think the audio message might be just as good if not better than the book (certainly shorter!) The whole notion of the book centers on the defining moment that spurs people to do something. We all have that Popeye moment - "I've had alls I can stands and I can't stands no more." But do we act? How do we identify our personal areas of holy discontent, feed it, fight it & follow it? Very good stuff. I think you can get the audio message, too. If you do, the following session with Rick Warren is sort of a follow-up to Hybels message, and a terrific one-two punch. You should be able to get these two sessions here. Good book, though!
- 100 People Who Are Screwing Up America (And Al Franken is # 37) by Bernard Goldberg. OK, so this is sort of off the charts for my usual reading. I remember looking at this when it came out, and thought it was funny. Was ordering something from Amazon a few weeks back, and needed a bargain book for a couple of bucks to get me over the threshhold for free shipping. This showed up, and it was kinda fun. Didn't know a lot of the names, but understand why they're listed. Here's a quote from the intro of the book: "And it won't take you long to notice that there are a lot of liberals on the list, which, of course, is just how it ought to be. If I were compining the list years ago, say, when I was in college, there'd be a lot of conservatives on it. But this isn't years ago, and besides, I'm smarter now than I was back then..." So you can see a little tongue in cheek, but it was interesting.
Tuesday, June 05, 2007
Mark was swimming in the Gulf of Mexico on a mission trip, just south of Brownsville Texas in Mexico. He and two others got caught in an undertow, and Mark didn't make it. I can't imagine the heartache the church and family is experiencing. I think of all the many adventures, crazy stuff, et al that I've been involved in (not to mention the many things situations I've put many, many people in), and the good fortune we've had that little has gone wrong. Nothing more than a minor trip to the doc-in-the-box or the ER. Nothing serious. And nothing like Mark's group of college kids on a mission trip to Mexico.
What I do know of Mark, he was a tremendous servant of God, and he will be missed. A short article from the Ashland, KY newspaper can be read here.
Monday, May 14, 2007
My Mom seemed to know even more. Her phone call on Sunday was to let me know that if I wanted to have one last moment with my grandma, I should consider coming home soon. I was already planning a surprise Mother's Day trip, but after hanging up the phone, felt compelled to gather some clothes and go right then.
I can't tell you how glad I am that I did. I had the blessing of chatting with my grandma Skinner that evening and off an on Monday. But without a lot of detail, suffice it to say that things happened quickly. We called the ambulance at around noon Monday, and she passed away Tuesday morning at around 1:30 am.
My grandma's mind was sharp all along. While being wheeled out of the house by the ambulance crew, while gasping for oxygen, she had the wherewithall to remind my mom to grab a sweater, reminding her that she was cold last time in the hospital. She was a model mother right up to the end.
While in the ER, during a moment when she was quiet and still, she looked right at me and asked out of the blue if "that girl of mine was still sewing" (grandma was quite the seamstress and made tons of quilts, afghans, and the like - they had purchased my 10-year old daughter a sewing machine for Christmas, and had helped her create an outfit, purse, etc). A little later, as though she was building up the energy for another sentence, she looked at me and said "let's make sure she learns to crochet." I didn't understand much more of what she had to say, though looking back some of her efforts to communicate make perfect sense.
I have many memories of my Mammaw Skinner. Going to her house was always an adventure. As a kid, when we missed school because of snow (often a week at a time in KY), I spent enough time there to get hooked on soap operas, and get my fair share of Bob Barker and other daytime shows. I remember the hours I spent mowing her lawn, always for a fair wage. I always appreciated the simplicity of her life. Not that it wasn't complicated. But she lived simply. Family was her most important possession, and I am blessed to have been a part of that. (One of my favorite stories was from the early 90's when my wife and I lived in Ohio. They were visiting with us, and we were having lunch at a Red Lobster. She opened her napkin to get the silverware out, and said "Law, they gave me two forks." She didn't get out much to places like that, and it was one of the things about her that I found so endearing. That stuff didn't seem to matter much to her.) Her deep concern for family is perhaps the best lesson I could have possibly learned. It's part of her legacy. It's part of who I am. And for that I'll be forever grateful.
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
"Christ gave the Great Commission to the church - that's our purpose. The purpose of missions is to establish churches where there are none, so the church can continue to do the Great Commission.
"If you don't have kids, they probably won't either...."
"The Church may not be perfect, but nonetheless its the organism through which Christ has chosen to reach the world."
"Evangelism is a relay race, not a marathon" (nor is it a sprint...) "Unless the baton is handed off, the relay ends" (Steve compared this to what has happened in England, the very country from whom the Gospel was exported to us...the baton ceased to be passed, and now only 4% claim to be evangelical Christians in Great Britain)
Tuesday, April 10, 2007
I've always sort of been a "benefit of the doubt" kinda guy. Right or wrong, its where I land. I tend to give anyone who's acting out or saying something rude or unkind that benefit of the doubt. Sometimes you just don't think before you speak. Sometimes, you're just moody or cranky and you inadvertantly say something you shouldn't or don't normally say, or you say it with a certain tone that just changes the whole meaning. I also believe second chances are good things. We've all had them. Truth be told, we've all had many more than just 2, haven't we?
This is radio "shock jock." (he's been called that....I just thought he was a folksy kinda guy who happened to have one of those radio voices and made a career out of it...) He doesn't have a track record of racism or bigotry, and I don't think this one circumstance should make him a card-carrying member of that group. So if he needs to be suspended, fine. I'm not sure that's necessary either, but fine. But the guy has learned a valuable lesson. Let him back on the air to help the many who apparently do listen to his show come to learn those lessons from him.
In the mean time, what can we do to get Sharpton & Jackson off the air? And BTW, what little I've heard from Howard Stern...how can THAT guy not be suspended??
Friday, April 06, 2007
As for irony, UTEP was once Texas Western. The movie "Glory Road" depicted the true story of their basketball team, all of whom were black, who went on to beat the Adolph Rupp-coached Wildcats, all of whom were very white, in the national championship game. That was an imporant game in the history of sports, in a Jackie Robinson kind of way. Fast forward a bunch of years later, and you've got a coach who has had the reigns at both programs. Just interesting, that's all.
Wednesday, April 04, 2007
Well, can't we all get along? Seems to me there is a happy medium here somewhere. I am tired of Christians simply following the "loud" voices out there of Rush and other blowhards who are misquoting and taking Scripture out of context to suit their "the sky certainly isn't falling" theories, while ignoring the Biblical evidence that this earth is ours to steward appropriately.
Here are a few quotes and soundbites that I came across today that I thought were thought-provoking and somewhat humorous...on both sides of the ozone (so to speak).
- conservative radio host from Cincy named Bill Cunningham in a promo for his afternoon show, commenting on the drastic cold snap that has swept into the region - "Today we'll talk about whether this 50-degree drop in temperature is even more evidence of global warming." He, of course, is in the "hooey" camp.
- "71% of the population believes in global warming while the other 29% are still trying to resolve the 'earth is flat' debate" - ad in Outside magazine for a company called simpleshoes, who make shoes out of recycled tires (the April issue is the Green Issue, with lots of environment stuff)...
- Chip Giller of www.grist.org quoted in Outside mag...I think this quote is also on a Starbucks cup..."So-called 'global warming' is just a secret plot by wacko tree huggers to make America energy independent, clean our air and water, improve the fuel efficiency of our vehicles, kick-start 21st-century industries, and make our cities safer and more livable. Don't let them get away with it!" Very funny!
In case you're unfamiliar, a brief overview of the Passion movement. Louie Giglio founded it a number of years ago to mainly focus toward Christian students on college campuses and mobilize them to influence their campus and their world. In the process, several cutting-edge worship leaders emerged from the group, including Chris Tomlin, David Crowder, Charlie Hall, and others who have associated themselves with Passion, including Matt Redman, Shane & Shane and others. Not to mention a number of powerhouse teachers including John Piper, Beth Moore and others. You can find out more info at the Passion website. Read the very interesting CT article; there are a ton of links at the end of the article for some terrific resources you can check out, too.
I love the heart of these folks, and their desire to "make God famous", based on their foundational verse Isaiah 26:8 "Yes, Lord, walking in the way of your laws, we wait for you; your name and renown are the desire of our hearts."
"FOLLOWING JESUS doesn't get us where we want to go. It gets us to where Jesus goes, where we meet him in Resurrection surprise: "My Lord and my God!"
-Eugene H. Peterson, The Jesus Way
"SOCRATES mastered the art of dying; Christ overcame death as "the last enemy" (1 Cor. 15:26). There is a real difference between the two things; the one is within the scope of human possibilities, the other means resurrection. It is not from ars moriendi, the art of dying, but from the resurrection of Christ that a new and purifying wind can blow through our present world. … If a few people really believed that and acted on it in their daily lives, a great deal would be changed. To live in the light of the Resurrection—that is what Easter means."
-Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Letters and Papers from Prison
Tuesday, April 03, 2007
Song by Heywood about this giant statue of Jesus that looks like its made from butter (some locals say it looks like cheese...they call it Cheesus) IF YOU ARE EASILY OFFENDED, first of all, life is too short, so lighten up. But don't watch this if even the title of the song bugs you...this is awfully funny!
Wednesday, March 28, 2007
"Father, weejus come to you today....."
~ Don't put all of your eggs in one basket.
~ Walk softly and carry a big carrot.
~ Everyone needs a friend who is all ears.
~ All work and no play can make you a basket case.
~ Everyone is entitled to a bad hare day.
~ Let happy thoughts multiply like rabbits.
~ Keep your paws off other people's jellybeans.
~ The grass is always greener in someone else's basket.
~ An Easter bonnet can tame even the wildest hare.
~ To show your true colors you have to come out of your shell.
~ The best things in life are still sweet and gooey!
Good Idea: Finding Easter eggs on Easter.
Bad Idea: Finding Easter eggs on Christmas.
(Thanks to Mikey's Funnies...check them out & sign up for his daily funny at
Regardless, I know my way around the cardio room. Most of the machines ask you to enter some info about yourself in order, I suppose, to monitor your heart rate and adjust your workout accordingly. I suppose when I could no longer put "39" in when asked about my age - it kicked in!
So in March of 2007, I did turn 40. I'm still wondering what that really means, and how to best take advantage of the next 40. Learning from mistakes & shortcomings to be who God wants me to be - a better husband, father, and servant.
I don't want to spend too much time wondering how I would do the last 20 years differently... no sense in beating myself up too much!
Monday, February 19, 2007
But Christians should know better, shouldn't they? The only thing more troubling than this story is that fact that it made the news. What's wrong with people??
Sunday, February 18, 2007
Man's body found 1 year after death
Television was still on, authorities say; body partially mummified
The Associated Press
Updated: 1:06 p.m. ET Feb 17, 2007
HAMPTON BAYS, N.Y. - The partially mummified body of a man dead for more than a year has been found in a chair in front of his television, which was still on, authorities said.
Vincenzo Ricardo, 70, apparently died of natural causes, said Dr. Stuart Dawson, Suffolk County’s deputy chief medical examiner.
Police found Ricardo’s body this week when they investigated a report of burst pipes.
The home’s dry air had preserved his features, morgue assistant Jeff Bacchus said.
“You could see his face. He still had hair on his head,” Bacchus said.
Ricardo’s wife died years ago, and he lived alone, Dawson said.
“He hasn’t been heard from in over a year. That’s the part that baffles me,” he said. “Nobody sounded the alarm.”
Neighbors said they had thought Ricardo was in a hospital or nursing home.
“We never thought to check on him,” said neighbor Diane Devon.
© 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Friday, February 16, 2007
Tuesday, February 06, 2007
This first pic is from the Christian Center dining room. We got there early to set up the tech stuff, decorate, and essentially roll out the red carpet. Many of those who attended were either residents of the shelter, or folks that visit there for a hot meal. Had a good mix of both Bears and Colts fans.
This is a glimpse of the scene at our place. We decked it out very cool. We were planning the 16-foot screen for this room, but instead went with the regulation 55-inch image. Small, but we made it work. Very cool event, and something that I hope we'll do annually. And perhaps we can find a resolution with the powers that be to let us do one big event in the future!
This has been labeled so many ways..."The NFL cracking down on churches"..."The Evil One wins a victory against the church", etc. Really? Sounds like the NFL just pointed out to one church (it was pretty easy to see their new logo & all their details on their website, or we would never have known), that they were in violation of a federal copyright law. Somehow, that story was leaked to the Indy Star, which got it on the evening news, which caused all sorts of uproar here in central Indiana (I'm curious to know if this was an issue anywhere but here, since the national media didn't really give it much attention). Truth is, those of us who have had Super Bowl, er, Big Game Bashes for the past buncha years (how long has the S.B. been around??), well, we've been in violation of copyright law. Every time we've done it, though we had no clue, no one was hurt, and a good time was had by all.
What should our response be? First, we should obey the law. Of course, there will be those (I'll call them "boneheads" who give all Christians a bad name) who see this as a chance to "stand up for what is right" and do their event anyway. Really? Stand up for what is right? Teach the impressionable youth you're trying to reach that if a law doesn't suit your fancy, no problem. Just ignore it! Aren't our prisons overflowing with folks who live by this philosophy? Nice going.
But I don't think we should avoid some discussion. I do think there are some solutions that can be found that wouldn't harm the product the NFL has with CBS (or whomever), would fit w/in the guidelines of the law, and would allow us to build this cultural phenomenon into a ministry event. So let's talk to the NFL, to our lawmakers, to the folks at CBS, etc., and try to find some common ground. All of this talk about a victory for Satan? Let's cut that out. I didn't hear anyone taking away our religious freedom or forcing us to stop praying, meeting, worship, etc. Whatever the response from Christians, I hope we're taking the opportunity to be salt & light in this conversation.
All that said, this cartoon made me laugh from the Indy Star. Also, see the previous post for a couple of pics from our retooled, sized-down, Big Game Bash party that fit within the stipulations that were so public the last several days.
Friday, February 02, 2007
Renting a big projection screen - $100
HDTV antenna - $40
Pizza for 70-80 homeless - $250
Pop, chips, cookies, etc. - $200
The NFL sacking the plans of churches nationwide and not letting them show the game on a screen big enough for more than about 15 people and not allowing more than one screen in the building and generally flexing its "Nielsen Ratings" muscle and creating a PR nightmare for itself: PRICELESS...
Tuesday, January 23, 2007
Monday, January 22, 2007
Wednesday, January 10, 2007
(If you get to the comments, the nuclear engineer is fairly interesting....)