Saturday, September 19, 2009

A very neat picture of a father's grace

There is a little glimpse of the Kingdom in the reaction of the dad in this video.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The law of unintended consequences strikes again.

It appears that our headlong rush into "clean energy" without thinking through how the transition will be managed is creating havoc on the electrical grid.  Evidently the wind doesn't blow at a uniform speed and tends to blow more when the demand is lowest.  This phenomenon will create the possibility of higher electricity rates because we will have to use the more expensive natural gas peaking plants to produce electricity since nuclear and coal plants can't be turned on and off easily. So, during a severe recession we decide to launch a strategy that will raise the cost of production and living for air quality benefits we could achieve with nuclear power plants.  Never mind the thousands of birds being shredded, and threatened species being killed.  If ExxonMobil were killing 50 Golden Eagles per year at one of their sites, can you imagine the outcry and the fines that the environmental regulators would hand down?   This is almost Alice in Wonderland-esque at times.

The road to hell sometimes is paved with good intentions.

Friday, September 11, 2009

There are days I feel like the second one

Actually, both of them ring true at times. 
The imagery in the second clip is so vivid though.

Remembering a Very Surreal Day

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Unspeakable grief

For the second time in the past three months I will be going to the funeral of one of my neighbor's children.  And for the second time it will have been caused by an apparent drug overdose.  I cannot imagine the pain that the parents are bearing right now.  To lose a child is a tremendous loss.  To lose a child to the scourge of street drugs that run rampant in our country would be something that I don't know how to process.  My heart and prayers go out to the families during this time.

I really don't know what to make of the drug issue.  I praise the Lord that it is foreign to me.  I have no experience with family members being addicts, and I praise God for that.  But I have friends who have conquered the addiction, and others who are still struggling mightily with it.  I know it is a powerful addiction and one where your body is at war with your mind.  I also know that God can, and has, delivered people from the clutches of addiction.  Why do some make it and others don't?  I don't know the answer to that.  I don't know why some people are delivered in an almost supernatural manner from addictions, and others grind it out slowly - two steps forward, one step back - for their entire lives.  It's not fair, that is for sure.  But life isn't fair and we know that.

I pray for people who struggle with this.  I know sometimes I get short with them and wonder why they aren't farther along than they are.  But then God will remind me of how long some things in my life have taken, and others that are still a work in progress.   God is pretty good that way.  Just when you think you can be "all that" and pass judgment, He will remind you of who you once were.  He will also remind you that it was His grace, not your power that changed your situation.  Praise God for his mercy.

Listen to the clip below.  It is a song written by a friend for someone who cannot shake a drug addiction.  Right now this lyric just sticks with me:
If I could through myself
Set your spirit free
I'd lead your heart away
See you break, break away
Into the light
And to the day    

Say a prayer for those stuck in addictions tonight.  Lord knows they need Divine Intervention

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Love Wins

I had the pleasure of a presentation from this pastor during a class in January. It is a fascinating ministry they have. Ministering in strip clubs wouldn't work for everyone, but they are reaching the lost, which is what we are called to do. Click on each of the three videos to hear the way they are ministering in their community. Thanks to the Emergent Nazarene site for the links.

Video #1

Video #2

Video #3

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Reclaiming the lexicon

Kudos to the Desert Pastor for this piece on the process of catechesis. Last year when I implemented a catechism curriculum with my 5th and 6th grade class, I received so many cross-eyed looks from people it wasn't funny. If I had a dollar for every person who said something to the effect of "Isn't catechism a Catholic thing?" I could take a weekend trip somewhere. For the record, Catechism is a Catholic thing, and a Lutheran thing, and a Presbyterian thing, and an Anglican thing and.......

Take a look at the article on the formational process that is catechism. He makes a statement that "among evangelicals, salvation is commonly viewed more as an an event than as a process, and baptism as merely an "outward sign" of an inner conviction. This is a travesty - a point of view that contributes to the hollowness that has only recently been called into question by a new generation of evangelicals."

I guess I am among that new generation of evangelicals. I see the crying need for formal, systematic (NOT dry, boring and ritualistic) training of new believers in the faith. We as the church need to emphasize the journey of catechism, not the sprint-like race that so many have embraced.

More on this later as the Desert Pastor continues his thoughts.