Saturday, June 07, 2014
I am dumbstruck. Honestly, there is nothing to say about Tapeworm except, "yuck, gross, ewwww, nasty." OK, lots of villains have followed on the parasite theme, but Tapeworm?! There are only two excuses I can think of for this villain: 1) A superhero was putting on a few and the writers need a fast way to take it off, or 2) Someone was looking for a reason to have a superhero shout "I'm going to pull you out my ass and break you into little tiny segments."
I can see it now - soon there will be the "Society of Parasitic Worms," and all the good guys will just call them "Yuck." All they can possibly do is annoy you or gross you out.
comic books comics tapeworm villains
Friday, June 06, 2014
Engagament and Separation
The Christian response to secularization, where the process cannot not be stopped, has historically been separation. Indeed this is the only strategy compatible with obedience to God. The loss of a Christian denomination to orthodoxy, once it became clear that the denomination is not likely to be recovered and the falling away from orthodox belief and practice is too severe to be tolerated, has led to the formation of new denominations, nondenominational churches, and parachurch organizations. And similarly with the secularization of public schools and colleges, which led to the establishment of Christian schools and homeschooling, while Christian charities have been in some measure an alternative to the welfare state. With society at large and the state ruling it no longer Christian, it has still been possible to maintain a Christian sub-culture in which God was obeyed and faithful Christians could live in that obedience."May" be failing? - Oh, I think it is quite obvious it IS failing. He then goes on to look at ENDA and its ramification and then concludes:
But as we move further into the twenty-first century, this essentially defensive strategy may be failing...
If orthodox Christians are deprived of their parachurch institutions, and only worship services are tolerated by the state, then we will remain as a faithful community, and perhaps begin to argue that we should be able to serve God as we believe he requires, regardless of how offended others profess themselves to be. The partisans of a nonreligious society and the sexual revolution that is destroying religious liberty take no less non-negotiable positions, and a nonideological state should not prefer one side over the other. Most importantly, we will continue as faithful disciples of Christ until he returns.PLEASE! Is that the response of Paul? IS that how the faithful community of Christ came to shape the western world? I don't think so! He fails to address two central problems for the church.
One of the very fracturing he so describes. That fracturing as developed a world where the para-church is separate from the church. There was a time when all this para-church stuff was church. We have participated in this separation willingly. Secondly, is the fact that we continue to fracture instead of ignore, again, the example of the apostles. When some thought the church was for all and some thought it was just for the Jews, they sat down and figured out what to do. They did not run off and start a bunch of different churches. They worked hard to build unity instead of division.
Wish we were that smart.
church society unity
Thursday, June 05, 2014
Maybe They Are Done Being A Leader
There are two enormous flaws in the thinking in this piece. And they are flaws that strongly illustrate my problems with Pentecostalism generally.
The first flaw is that the issue is about the guy and his sin. It's not - it's about the church and its standing in the world. It's about all the people that he lied to and the harm that was done to them on the basis of those lies. It's about all the souls whose faith was shattered by this man's lies.
The second flaw is that professional ministry is just all that important - it's not. This guy is not that indefensible and he can find another way to make a living. If God can gift him for leadership, God can gift someone else to take his place.
And now I will shut up before I say something I regret.
ministry pentecostal problems
Related Tags: Illuminated Scripture
Wednesday, June 04, 2014
Oft Overlooked - And He Should Not Be
He was as witty as Wilde, as original as Joyce, and as clever as Kafka. Yet he remains an icon to far too few, partly because he spoke and wrote as a Catholic. In the final years of his life Chesterton predicted that the absolutes of right and wrong would become blurred, religion publicly condemned, that we would care more for animals than babies and we would worship sex while mocking love. We would, he said, be governed by whim and fashion. “Tradition means giving votes to the most obscure of all classes, our ancestors. It is the democracy of the dead. Tradition refuses to submit to that arrogant oligarchy who merely happen to be walking around." He was, quite clearly, not only a genius but a prophet.I find it interesting that he is often never mentioned in protestant circles and when he is, it is usually only among the mainlines. I find it fascinating that his Catholicism would cut off this man's extraordinary insight from so many that need it, and agree with it. I find it extraordinary that we are still fighting out the reformation hundreds of years later.
Why do we close ourselves off to truth so? Why do we let our affiliations stand in the way of what is most important?
Chesterton is one of those author's that ought to be in any serious Christian's lexicon. You will not be tainted by his Catholicism, you will be enhanced by his love of Christ. Or do you, as we so often accuse Catholics, love your affiliation more than your Lord?
Tuesday, June 03, 2014
The Barna Group recently released a report revealing that over the past decade, more Americans report feeling lonely, unhappy, and complacent about life. The report names 9/11, Hurricane Katrina, wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the economic recession as key factors influencing this early 21st century malaise.They go on to blame Facebook, porn, the various national cirses, etc. Then they conclude this way:
The report is striking, as it reveals that less Americans describe themselves as “busy” than did ten years ago. In 2000, 46 percent said they were busy, now only 34 percent do. Further, one in five Americans are lonely, compared with only 12 percent a decade ago.
Further, this is a crisis for local churches to address. No economic recovery will fix the deep pain of isolation and loneliness. Depressed, lonely Americans are already in the pews (or theater seats) and desperately need real, face to face human relationships. Although the national events Barna listed as contributing to depressed America are surely influential in each individual life, every suicide and report of loneliness represents a unique story that can only be addressed through local community and intimate relationships.The church cannot handle this problem either - only Jesus can. I hope my distinction is obvious here. No church can ultimately fill one's social and support needs. When one is depressed, nothing human can.
Depression is typically an expression of self-absorption - I know it is in my case. At its root, is that not the definition of sin? Only Jesus can take away our sin. The church is vital for us as He works on us, but only He can solve the root problem.
Christ depression loneliness
Monday, June 02, 2014
There Is A Difference You Know
Do You Want a Leader or a Manager?Edmondson seems to think the difference in that a leader takes you places and a manger maintains the status quo. I disagree - a leader is about people and a manager is about things and programs.
A leader does not have to lead you to new places; a leader may lead you to doing what you currently do better. But a leader does not simply crank the wheels of the mechanism - they get into the heads of the people, they motivate, they encourage, they invigorate. Leading is an art, not a skill. Managing is a skill.
The church definitely needs more leaders - now if we can just figure out what they really are.
church lead manage