Monday, September 29, 2008

Sweet and Bitter

"I know no sweeter way to heaven than through
free grace and hard trials together."
Samuel Rutherford

Thursday, September 25, 2008

FCS: A Cultural Marker

I love this kinda thing. I love it when the students come up with it on their own. I love it when I'm reminded why I do what I do. I love it when I'm reminded that the vision for the future is so much bigger than me.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

On Not Taking Ourselves Too Seriously

My dear friend Jayme has been so kind to post the Saturday Night Live skit featuring Tina Fey as Sarah Palin and Amy Poehler as Hillary Clinton which gave SNL it's best ratings since 2002. This evening I stumbled across remarks from the McCain camp on the SNL portrayal of Palin which sounds at once both reactionary and protective. But then I read this tidbit--found on MSNBC of all places--about Sarah Palin's own response. After having read it, I really don't think I could like her any more than I do now. I've decided that tomorrow is the day to put on my newly purchased "Barracuda" bumper sticker! So while spokesmen for McCain were being protective...

"Palin, on the other hand, found the sketch amusing, according to her spokesperson. The governor and the press corps watched the sketch in the back of her plane, laughing at Tina and Amy’s satirical take on the two politicians.

“She thought it was quite funny, particularly because she once dressed up as Tina Fey for Halloween,” Palin spokesperson Tracey Schmitt told CBS."

Monday, September 15, 2008

Monday, Monday.

Monday. A day to look back and wish that it was Saturday or Sunday.

Monday. A day to look forward to the fact that there are only five more days separating us from the next Saturday.

Monday. A day that never fails to remind us that we need to work to pay the bills.

Monday. A day that breeds temptation to hit the snooze button a few more times.

Monday. The second day of the week on most Protestant calendars and the first work day. It is a day of truth. One that sheds some light on why we do what we do. Is it because there are mouths to feed? Is it because work is a necessary evil and we have to earn a living somehow? Or is it because we believe in what we are called to set our hand to? Because we believe that there is purpose in the midst of our daily endeavors?

John Stott in his book Through the Bible Through the Year points out that the "Monday morning blues" bear witness to the fact that we are in need of an authentic Christian philosophy of work. Genesis 2:15 says that, "The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and take care of it." God put the man that He created into the garden that He planted to "work it and take care of it". Why not take care of it Himself? He made the garden. He made the man to take care of the garden. Why not leave out one extra step and do it Himself? Stott goes on to say, "God deliberately humbled Himself to need Adam's cooperation." God could have tended the garden Himself. But He chose not to!

Stott sums up his thoughts on an authentic Christian philosophy of work with this:

"We need, then, to make an important distinction between nature and culture. Nature is what God gives us; culture is what we make of it (agriculture, horticulture, etc.). Nature is raw materials; culture is commodities prepared for the market. Nature is divine creation; culture is human cultivation. God invites us to share in His work. Indeed, our work becomes a privilege when we see it as collaboration with God."

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Sarah Palin

I've Googled it. No one's created a Sarah Palin pit bull yet. So instead of washing my clothes, cleaning my house, or otherwise being responsible I decided to create one of my own. I've titled it "Portrait of a Hockey Mom in Politics".

Portrait of a Hockey Mom in Politics

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Palin Heard Peggy

In an editorial in today's Wall Street Journal, Peggy Noonan gave some helpful tips to John McCain and Sarah Palin on how to make strides and even win against Barak Obama's suasive rhetoric. Judging by the speech she gave at tonight's Republican National Convention, it seems that Palin took heed, and boy how she did it with style, pith, and wit! The gist of Noonan's article is this:

"America is a huge and lonely country. We are vast, stretch coast to coast, live in self-sufficient pods; modern culture tends us toward the atomic, the fractured and broken up. When two people meet, as they come to know each other as neighbors or colleagues, one of the great easers, one of the great ways of making a simple small human connection is: shared laughter. We are a political nation. We talk politics. So fill that area with humor: sly humor, teasing humor, humor that speaks a great truth or makes a sharp point."

The question has been raised, can Palin take the heat? And if she can, then will she simply make it through the onslaught of political backbiting or will she come out on the other side all the stronger in light of it, making her a candidate that people can envision as vice president? Well, this strait-talking, field-dressing Alaska woman sure did hand the opposition her reply to those questions this evening and did so with humor to boot! Here are a few of my favorite Palin lines and phrases from tonight's speech:

"I guess a small-town mayor is sort of like a "community organizer," except that you have actual responsibilities."

"That luxury jet [used for the Alaskan governor] was over the top. I put it on eBay."

"...there is much to like and admire about our opponent. But listening to him speak, it's easy to forget that this is a man who has authored two memoirs but not a single major law or reform--not even in the state senate."

"But when the cloud of rhetoric has passed, when the roar of the crowd fades away, when the stadium lights go out, and those Styrofoam Greek columns are hauled back to some studio lot--what exactly is our opponent's plan?"

"Al Qaeda terrorists still plot to inflict catastrophic harm on America, he's worried that someone won't read them their rights."

"In politics, there are some candidates who use change to promote their careers. And then there are those, like John McCain, who use their careers to promote change. They're the ones whose names appear on laws and landmark reforms, not just on buttons and banners, or on self-designed presidential seals."

"My fellow citizens, the American presidency is not supposed to be a journey of 'personal discovery.' This world of threats and dangers is not just a community, and it doesn't just need an organizer."

“You know what the difference between a hockey mom and a pit bull is? Lip stick.”

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Palin and TR

In a speech given tonight at the Republican National Convention, former Tennessee Senator Fred Thompson presented the following thought provoking and relatively indisputable point of support for Republican Party vice presidential nominee, Sarah Palin:

"I can say without fear of contradiction that she is the only nominee in the history of either party who knows how to properly field dress a moose ... with the possible exception of Teddy Roosevelt."

I couldn't find a picture of Palin with a field-dressed moose, but I did find one of her with gutted, but stylish, grizzly!