Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Would this make me a bigot?

In Minneapolis 6 Muslims prayed in the terminal right before boarding a plane and then once they boarded they fanned out all over the plane. The flight crew and passengers expressed concern over flying with these people on the plane, so all 6 were taken off the plane and now C.A.I.R. (Council on America-Islamic Relations) has their turban tied in a knot over this. The spokesmuslim for CAIR even said he wished America were under Islamic rule. Hmmm.

I mean, I would have felt the same way if I saw some Muslims praying before boarding the plane. Maybe you are praying to your god to give you success in blowing this plane up or success in taking it over and crashing it into some other building, maybe in Chicago?

Are all Muslims terrorists? Not at all but... All the terrorists in the past 6 years have been Muslim. A bigoted response? I think not.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Monday time for...

Weigh in and answers.


Answers to Friday's Useless Facts:

The longest words that can be typed using only your:

Left Hand - stewardesses

Right Hand - lollipop

Friday, November 17, 2006

Okay smarty pants!!!

What are the longest words that can be typed by using only your left hand and by using only your right hand? THERE!!!

Fun Fact Friday !!!


Do you notice the reflectors on the roads by the yellow lines? Most of the reflectors are white or yellow, but every now and then there is a blue one? Do you know why it is blue? Take a guess and I'll let you know on Monday.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

I thought I had...

at least a few more years, like 10, before I would have the "Talk" with Lawson. I thought. But last night in the youth group class they have started a series on "Temptation". We broke up guys and girls and talked a little more about temptation on personal levels. Then we split up into huddles and had a list of questions to go over.

The first question was "What are some temptations that you face today?" (there were 7 more questions but we never made it past this one).

The number one temptation these 11th grade guys talked about was ...


Porn.

What? Porn?

One of the guys said they guessed it would get easier to deal with when you got older. Man if it only worked that way. If marriage was the "magic pill" and you never found it tempting to look at any other woman than your wife. If only... So then we began to talk about serious subjects. These 11th grade kids talked more about sexual temptations than the adults did in the Wednesday night class that Phillip Allen and I taught last quarter.

We covered quite a bit. How far is too far? Is it wrong to talk about what you did? Can you do certain things and still be a virgin?

I figured the kids were talking about looking at porn at home on the internet or if someone slipped in a magazine to class, which some were, but mainly they mentioned that kids were downloading porn to their cell phones and looking at it during class.

Our society is going on a downward spiral out of control. It amazes me or rather it shouldn't (with the corrupt leaders we have) how easily accessible porn is. On your cell phone? Talk about impersonal. I mean when I was growing up you at least had to have the gonads to walk into a store and swipe the magazine. Now one can just get it sent to their cell phones?! Do we really need cell phones? I mean I am so thankful now that someone can get ahold of me, what in the world would they have done if they couldn't talk to me right then. Oh wait that's right they could have waited till I got HOME and checked my ANSWERING MACHINE. Okay back on topic.

I think this is something that should be brought up infront of the new lifegroup for parents of teens. Do they know? Do they care? Or does their son having the latest cell phone matter more than their sexual purity? They only thing I think that really sunk in the with guys is that Lord willing one day they will meet a great Christian woman who has abstained from sexual temptation and has kept herself pure for her husband and the hurt that they will feel when they have to tell her that. "I couldn't see past the next hour so I gave in and got a ... or had sex ... or (insert some sexual fulfilment that you tainted yourself with)." "I know that you denied yourself these pleasures but I just couldn't so I am offering you a blemished sexual life and want you to give me your unblemished sexual life". Rough.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

More random thoughts...

Okay so best guestimates state that approx. 30% - 35% of Americans turn out to vote. Now we have been around for about 230 years. This is our 109th elected congress. Voting has become an overlooked privilege. But that is whole nother rant all together. Let's contrast this with Iraq. For the first time ever people there are allowed to vote for their leaders. Take a guess at the percentage of people who voted...(insert Jeopardy music)...


70% - SEVENTY - SEVEN ZERO

What is the difference? This is something that these people have wanted, never had the chance to, and now have the ability to. They flooded the polls to express their view points.

Okay now here is the randomness...

How excited are some people when the become Christians for the first time after having lived a life devoid of hope and peace? Some of the most 'on fire' people are those who have longed for a peace and hope and at last someone showed them how Christ can bring that to their lives.

Is it me or do those who have been going to church their whole lives, all through school, because your parents dragged you, then on through college because somewhere deep inside you knew it was right, and then now as an adult because somewhere between being dragged to church and now have most likely found your own faith, seem to discount their faith a little. Maybe it has become 'old hat' to us. Just another thing to check of the list..."Yep, went Sunday morning, night and Wednesday night. Done for this week." "Been doing this for x number of years."...

Why does it seem that those people who have lived a 'rough' or 'secular' or '(insert a descriptive word)' life value this new found hope more. Is it different for them? Does it have some other meaning that we are missing? Or do they just realize exactly what it was they were looking for and now that they have it they can't wait to tell someone else.

And one more thing since I am espousing my thoughts on 'spiritual' subjects...Why do we not hesitate to spend $550 - $1,200 to fly to the BAJA or Belize (both excellent works and causes) but we can't clear our schedule to go spend $2.13 for a gallon of gas to go serve in the inner city? Fear that we might see these people again after we are done serving them, or that someone we know might see us serving?


Okay one more then I'll stop...How hard is it to TURN OFF YOUR STUPID CELL PHONE IN CHURCH!!!!! Do those people who call you not know that you are in church between 9 and 11:15 every Sunday? Are you living that poor of an example to those around you?

And I'm spent...

Monday, November 13, 2006

My first official heart attack!!!

Stacy and I are looking for a new house to buy, hopefully within the next month or so. We have found two that we really really really like (Stacy says love for one and like for the other) I feel the same way but our houses that we love are not the same ones. But my dad told me before we got married not to put up a fuss about the house too much because she is the one who has to be home all day with the kiddos and will make it the way she wants so she feels comfortable raising the kids there and spending the majority of her time there. So we are hopefully going to make an offer on the the one she loves. Anyways the house we are going for is a two story (now don't get ahead of me here)...

It is Sunday afternoon and we are looking at the house with our Realtor Diane Hasley of Keller Williams (who sold our house in 1 day I might add) Well we are up stairs, I have Jordan and think the Stacy is watching Lawson and Stacy thinks that I am watching Lawson. I went into one bedroom and Stacy another and then THUD BANG THUD BANG THUD BAND THUD BANG THUD. The only thing I remember is putting Jordan down upstairs and then picking Lawson up at the bottom of the stairs. I think I touched one step on the way down. Lawson was laying at the bottom looking up when I got to him he started to cry and I scooped him up and took him to the car (mostly so I could gather myself) to check him out and get him his pacifier. I took me about an hour to calm down, it took Lawson about 2 seconds after he got his pacifier. Just glad I didn't see him fall down the stairs. Good think kids are made out of God rubber...

Friday, November 03, 2006

Church money and the poor

Here is a post from Larry James on giving and the use of the funds. Interesting stuff if you really think about it.


Frequently at this site, readers lecture me about how the church, rather than the government, should care for the poor. I know we will continue to debate this point in the future.

Not long ago a friend sent me a link to an extremely interesting article by Ray Mayhew ("Embezzlement: The Corporate sin of Contemporary Christianity?"). I found Mayhew's ideas compelling. What follows are a few quotes for your consideration.

_____________________________

While reading some patristic documents recently, I was startled to discover that the Church Fathers are univocal in their insistence that the bulk of the revenue collected by a local church belonged by right to the poor. There was no expectation among them that a large percentage of what was collected by a local congregation would be used for its own maintenance and ministry. In fact, to do so would have been viewed by them as a misappropriation of funds. . . .. . .the assumption of most church leaders today is that we have the right to spend our revenue in ways that we believe would be most beneficial to the work for which we are responsible. Budgets are drawn up, employees paid, buildings built and maintained, and missionaries supported. This is the way things are done, and as long as there is an annual audit and no misappropriations of funds, all is well. But is it?

All of the above is built on two assumptions that are rarely, if ever questioned. The first is that revenue collected is "ours," belonging by right to the congregation that gave it and who now, therefore, has the right to spend it. The fact that some churches tithe their income and give away ten percent to other ministries only reflects how deeply we believe it is "ours" to use in the first place. The second assumption is that how this money is spent is a pragmatic decision that varies from congregation to congregation (and culture to culture), depending on the perceived needs and objectives of each local church. I believe that both of these assumptions need to be reexamined in light of scripture and church history. . . .

. . .The record is unambiguous, church revenue, prior to Constantine, was used, both locally and in other parts of the Empire, primarily for the welfare of the sick, the poor, the imprisoned, the widow and the orphan. The local congregation did not expect a large percentage of what was given to be used for its own maintenance and ministry. In fact, to do so would have been viewed by most of them as a misappropriation of funds.In the second century, Tertullian provided us with details of the church services in North Africa. He spoke of every man bringing money. . . "You might call them the trust funds of piety. They are spent on the support and burial of the poor."

Justin Martyr provides us with similar insight from the second century practice of the Roman church. Speaking of the Sunday service he says, "the money thus collected is deposited with the president who takes care of the orphans and widows and those who are in straits because of sickness or any other cause and those in prison, and visitors form other parts. In short, he looks after all who are in need.". . .Giving in this way was not seen as generosity, it was viewed as an act of restitution. It belonged to the poor by right. Augustine instructed his own church to set aside at least a tenth of all their possessions and income for the poor (not the church). This was actually a concession to what he saw as greed because his congregation was not prepared to give up everything that was "superfluous"!. . .

We should also not miss the obvious: when the Old Testament tithe was given, it was given away to others. It was given to the Levites, a tribe to which those doing the giving did not belong. In contrast, when I give to the church, it is not "given away" at all. I am the church! Revenue given to the church directly benefits me as a believer in providing pastoral care, Bible teaching, family counseling, facilities for my children and a building for me to worship in. In that sense, very little is given away. Most of the money I give to the church is spent by the church on meeting my needs and those of my family. For this I am very grateful. However, I am also suspicious as to whether I am a valid recipient of such expenditure..

. .Today, if we are going to teach the tithe as a benchmark of faithful stewardship, we need to also teach how the early church used these trust funds in ministering to the needy.. . .In the late fourth century, John Chrysostom echoed Matthew 25 in lamenting, "thou hast been bidden to give freely to the hungry. . .but thou dost not count him deserving even of a loaf; but thy dog is fed to fullness while Christ wastes with hunger.". . .Cyprian maintained that prayer and fasting was of no avail unless accompanied by giving to the poor, while Origen ranked almsgiving third in importance behind baptism and martyrdom. However, their definition of almsgiving went far beyond giving their loose change to the hungry and homeless. It was defined as spending on oneself only that which was absolutely necessary and giving the remainder away. Nothing superfluous should be kept as long as others lacked the necessities of life.. . .Ignatius characterized heretics as those who had "no care for the widow, the orphan, the oppressed, the hungry or the thirsty."



Lots to think about here for church people, huh?Read the essay in its entirety at: http://www.relationaltithe.com/EmbezzlementPaper.PDF?PHPSESSID=a51c2cdedd075fbce8b57263389f9007.

Voting on Tuesday

In the 1800's there was not a specific 'voting' day. So in 1845 a Federal law was passed that deemed Tuesday 'voting' day.

Sunday was a day of rest. It took one day to travel and Friday and Saturday were farming days so by default Tuesday was the day. Travel on Monday, vote on Tuesday, return on Wednesday and the have Thursday to get ready to harvest on Friday and Saturday.

There is no 'voting' day established by the Constitution only a federal law passed in 1845 makes Tuesday a 'voting' day.

So Jamey was correct.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Useless? Information

Why do we vote on Tuesday and not some other day of the week?

Anyone know?

Take a guess and tomorrow I will post the correct answer.