03 June 2017

Parenting vs. Podcast

Lindsey and I are recording a podcast! We're calling it "Parenting vs. Podcast".

I created a separate blog url for the podcast.


I also submitted the podcast to iTunes. Hopefully, we'll see the podcast there soon.

Peace...No Peace

Lindsey and I discuss pop music, hate groups, and brains.

31 May 2017

28 May 2017

Kids, Marriage, Oregon

Lindsey and I had a discussion on kids, marriage, and our trip to Oregon.

06 May 2017

24 March 2017

There. I Said It.

“For we never came with words of flattery, as you know, nor with a pretext for greed—God is witness.

But we were gentle among you, like a nursing mother taking care of her own children.”
‭‭1 Thessalonians‬ ‭2:5, 7‬ ‭ESV‬‬

As I read this, I think of a couple of things. I think of Christians who actually did suffer to be Christians, and who are still suffering today. I wonder how strong my faith would be under pressure. I think my faith is under some sort of pressure. Nothing like the early church, or what it's like in non Christian countries. I'm not persecuted. I might be thought if as a bigot, or ignorant among some of my peers. But I also have people among my demographic that are outspoken. Academics like the Liturgists. Former screamo guys on BC Pod. 

So, I'm not persecuted. 

It's also easy for me to criticize the church while reading this. I think of mega churches. Is it up to me to criticize? I've got my own problems. I can choose not to attend a mega church... 

It does make me feel uneasy. The way these churches operate. Thousands attend each Sunday. They pull in tons of money. I have no idea how much money is received. I don't remember Calvary publishing weekly giving amounts. Sagebrush did, I think. If I remember correctly, it was close to $1,000,000. I would venture to guess that Calvary receives more, because I would assume they have a larger congregation.  I may be wrong though.

What does money have to do with things? What I read says that they didn't come with words of flattery. What motivates someone to flatter? Either they respect the other persons position of authority, or they're selling something. They said they didn't come with a pretext for greed. 

I might be bitter. But I could never imagine Skip calling out his congregation. Like really calling them out. I couldn't imagine Skip putting out a message that would potentially repel a long time tither...a customer. I feel like megachurches, including Calvary look at Christians as customers. They feed them with nice things. A nice building. A comfortable environment. A feel good story. An entertaining worship service. 

People walk away feeling good, but not really challenged in any way. 

People give their 10%--pay their dues. Trust the church will do something nice with it, then go on their way. This was me at one point. Maybe even today. 

Is it okay for these guys to profit. To have giant salaries. They started the church. People attended. What's the difference between a mega church pastor that started a church plant and a small business owner who found success? 

Churches don't pay taxes. That's one. I think the mission of the church is to love in their community. When money is the mission, it's lost. When a church goer is a customer, and not a fellow follower of Christ, I think the mission is lost. 

So, here you have it. 

Mothers nursing. Talking to Lindsey, she's told me it's a very special experience nursing. I remember three instances that were very special. The first time she nursed each of our three kids. Her face was pure joy and happiness. A face full of love. 

19 March 2017

Sunday Thoughts

“For they themselves report concerning us the kind of reception we had among you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come.”
1 Thessalonians 1:9-10 ESV

The early church. I have a lot to learn, my attention is brought to it right now. I'm thinking about this verse here--or couple of verses, rather. They turned from idols to serve the living, true God. What did that look like? What was an idol for them back then?

I'll identify a few idols I have and what I think are idols in our culture today. First, I'd like to define "idol".

Google says:
noun: idol; plural noun: idols
an image or representation of a god used as an object of worship.
synonyms: icon, representation of a god, image, effigy, statue, figure, figurine, fetish, totem; More
graven image, false god, golden calf
"a throng of men gathered in worship of a golden idol"
a person or thing that is greatly admired, loved, or revered.
"movie idol Robert Redford"
synonyms: hero, heroine, star, superstar, icon, celebrity; More
favorite, darling, pet, beloved;
informalpinup, heartthrob, dreamboat, golden boy/girl, Adonis, Greek god
"a teen idol"

Alright. The Greek origin says "form, shape". Not exactly what I thought it would be. So, I'll have to guess the Greeks were worshiping physical shapes. Images of gods. I don't do that, do I? I don't have physical shapes of gods in my house. What's a god? An object, person, deity worshiped. Basically what google says.

Okay. So what, or who do I worship? I claim to worship Jesus.

Last night, I was talking to Lindsey about my priorities. What's on my mind the most. For sure it's life. Life is getting my work done. Lesson planning. Reflecting on being s better teacher. It's school. My school. Completing work I need to do, well. It's keeping my head above water with all the events that require my attendance. It's making time in these busy times to relax. Play video games. Lay on the couch. Drink beer.

So. Life could be my idol, I suppose. I think a lot about all these things. All these thing cause me a great deal of stress. You know, keeping up. I worry. I stress. That's my idol.

What else? Technology, for sure. I think of tech as a fascination. But, it's in my mind for a large percentage of the day. I think about it. I admire it. I admire the way software looks. The way the case of a compute feels. Processor speeds, amount of cores. GPUs. RAM.

I can't help it. I'm interested. I'm not even an expert. I just think it's cool.

So, yes. Tech is an idol.

Alright. What are idols in our culture? I'd say owning a home. Our homes.

Man. It's hard to find a place to start. In America, anything could be worshiped. People. Houses. Cars. Tech. Money. Church. Your self. Pets. Movies. You name it. We have an abundance of stuff that's available to worship. And we do.

I'll revisit the verses now. Thessaloniki turned from those idols--I'm guessing images of Greek gods. They turned to Jesus. Or, was it the Hebrew God? Did the early church worship Jesus as God? Did they understand the trinity? Serious question.

Anyway. They turned from those idols and worshiped God.

In church today, we talked about pain, suffering, and questions we ask as humans. Pain and suffering is hard to understand. It's hard to accept. Especially if you believe in an all-powerful God. Logic says, if God's all-powerful, and all-loving, suffering shouldn't exists. Yet it does.

I've had a hard time with this.

There are still questions. A lot of them. Here are some things I'm confident in, though:

Nature is awesome. Detail abounds. From the atoms arranged in our bodies, to the stars and planets in Space. Nature is awesome.

Love exists. I love so much. We love so much. It could be a function of evolution, which is fine with me. But, it exists. Love is an incredible force. We need to be social. We have to be together. Loving each other. Sharing meals with each other. Love exists.

Then, there's humans. We realize live exists. And we can observe how fucked up this world is. Even thinking about Albuquerque. Drug addiction. Homelessness. Selfishness. It rules our community. Our community is super broken, it's apparent.

It's apparent it needs to be fixed. The gospel says Jesus fixed it. The gospel says Jesus suffered to end suffering. I've heard it a thousand times. I don't understand it completely. But gospel. God himself fixed it.

This needs more explaining. Jesus suffered to end suffering. How does this work? I can put things together. The Universe is complex. This doesn't mean it was created, necessarily. But, it exists. And that alone is crazy to me. I appreciate it. That's crazy to me, too.

Are there cosmic rules I just don't understand? Is this where my logic should take over and I should ditch this idea altogether? A lot of people would say yes. What's holding me back are the things I've already talked about. Love. Community. Nature.

I'll keep searching.

Parenting vs. Podcast

Lindsey and I are recording a podcast! We're calling it "Parenting vs. Podcast". I created a separate blog url for the podca...