Open Blogging

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65 Responses

  1. Officerhoppy says:

    Open blogging…..hmmmmm. So what should we talk about?

  2. Em says:

    We could talk about how to strengthen the Church maybe? ? ? ?

  3. Michael says:

    I’m talked out.

    Communication used to be somewhat of a mutual exchange of ideas to learn.
    Now it’s a battleground every day…and some of the hills people choose to die on are utterly insane.

    I have nothing to contribute to those discussions but scorn and there is plenty of that already.

    I fight the desire too isolate even more…to be quiet with my cats and let everybody beat the hell out of each other outside my door.

    The inability to find or discern factual information will be the death of this country…and I’ve been saying that for years now.

    We don’t care…we choose our favorite lies and liars and go forth to battle other lies and liars and die for lies we want to believe.

    I have no place anymore and don’t really want one.

    God says leave the site up…and gives me no reason.

    So…here we are.

  4. JD says:

    Thank you Michael.

  5. Michael says:

    The church is strongest when it’s under fire for being faithful to Jesus.

    We can’t even agree on what that means.
    It means suffering and sacrificial love unto death…whether you like it or not.

    Most don’t…so I have little hope for anything but a remnant and that will develop in other countries first.

  6. Dan from Georgia says:

    I am not really wanting to chat about anything today. I will say this and I stated in on another thread a week or so ago, but this site has basically kept me sane and in the faith. Thank you Michael. Cats (and dogs) are a great healing balm.

    Just breaking: TMZ is reporting that actress Betty White passed away this morning. The major news outlets are not reporting it yet, but TMZ usually has it right.

  7. Michael says:

    Betty White died and I’m not feeling so hot myself…

  8. Michael says:

    Dan,

    We reported at the same time. 🙂
    If some folks find this helpful, it’s worth it.

  9. Dan from Georgia says:

    agreed.

  10. Typically, my movie watching is pretty spotty, but post-Christmas I’ve watched 3 films: The latest Spiderman movie; American Underdog (the Kurt Warner story); and the Netflix film Don’t Look Up (a climate change satire where pretty much everyone gets roasted…except the quasi-Christian character).

  11. Em says:

    Michael @11:37am
    Yes, the Church is strongest when it is under fire….
    Was it Paul who said, “though He slay me, yet will I serve Him?”
    IF one has tasted the beauty of life in Christ, there is no other choice…
    Sadly today there IS too much prosperity being taught in some churches.
    What happened to hope in God’s promises to his kingdom. I am reminded of Debbie Boone singing , “You light up my life. You give me HOPE to carry on…..”
    ***
    No pie in the sky. A disgusting slam of unbelief
    ***
    @11:52
    Love the old gospel song, “Everybody talking ’bout heaven ain’t again’ there…”. Don’t be discouraged, Michael. Remember Jesus’ words to Jerusalem… Yet they cried, “Crucify Him!”
    What an incredible salvation we have inherited! ! !
    Do we say, thank you, Jerusalem? No, history is playing out exactly as God knew it would.
    Am I preaching here? Guess so – I’ll stop now
    God keep

  12. Em says:

    Betty White is gone….?
    Wish I knew where she went……

  13. Michael says:

    Unless there are obvious extenuating circumstances, I assume people are with the Lord…He came to save…

  14. Em says:

    Yes, Michael… I never heard Betty speak of her faith, but, like you, i, too, will hope
    Thanks and God keep

  15. WenatcheeTheHatchet says:

    BBC and Rolling Stone have reported White’s passing, in the last hour, here as of 12:52 PST

    Betty White outlived Elvis, Prince, Michael Jackson, Leonard Cohen … and a whole lot of other famous people.

    Back on December 30, 2020 old 2021 basically kicked off with the death of Eugene Wright, the bassist from the Dave Brubeck quartet.

    I was just mulling over at my blog how we’re approaching the FIFTIETH anniversary of the release of Stevie Wonder’s amazing album Innervisions. I’m closer to 50 than 40 and it’s weird seeing how many people I knew from the later 1990s have been going gray. It happens. Death is the fate of everyone, the author of Ecclesiastes warned us … and he also warned to not be a fool so as to avoid dying before one’s time. It’s like middle age is the beginning of discovering of what things that you thought weren’t gonna mess with you previously could (or will!) be the stuff that kills you when you’re older.

    These last two years have been weird years.

    I was planning to catch the new Spidey but then all that snow hit us here in western Washington. Now I really don’t feel like watching it just yet. Better to wait til the snow melts! The roads and sidewalks have been too icy to feel inspired to travel much.

  16. Officerhoppy says:

    A great movie is of an off Broadway production of “Come Away”. About about the folks of Gander Newfoundland and how they handled the huge of influx of people and air planes as a result of 9/11.

    Maybe it’s just close to me because I was flying home from St.Louis on 9/11 and was downed in Denver. Spent 3 days there with no way to get home.

    Michael
    My guess is you are an introvert which means people and discussions can exhaust you. Maybe good to take a day with your cat, a novel or biography, and a bottle of Scotch.

  17. Dan from Georgia says:

    Regarding actors and musicians who live well into their 80s and 90s, as a classic movie fan, I am just amazed at how many people these older folk have worked with, most of whom have been gone for many many DECADES. The late actress Olivia de Havilland passed away at the age of 104 in the summer of 2020. She was in the movie Gone With The Wind from 1939, and was the oldest surviving cast member.

  18. pstrmike says:

    Speaking of musicians, Tom Stipe passed away a year ago yesterday. RIP, Tom.

  19. LInn says:

    If you want an excellent, reflective movie to begin the new year try “Belfast.” I watched via a streaming service as the nearest theater in my area playing it was 50 miles away. It’s excellent and gives lots of food for thought regarding how we, as Christians, should get along better with each other.

  20. Babylon's Dread says:

    The church is under fire

  21. Michael says:

    The church is under fire that will ruin it…from within.

    Corruption, nationalism, false prophets, abuse, and an unquenchable desire for power are accomplishing what cultural influences that truly oppose the gospel have failed at.

  22. Linn says:

    I had a Zoom meetup with a friend of mine this morning. We usually meet for lunch during the holiday season, but we’re both quite mindful of COVID. Anyway, in the midst of our conversation, she said that a lot of people who combine political power, especially on the far right, with Christianity may not be real Christians at all. I found that quite profound because I am one of the few Christians she knows. Somehow, we have remained “besties” from fifth grade, as I went on to becoming “religious” and she went on to embrace secular humanism in all its glory (she probably put the W in woke). Her comment, however, did give me some hope that some who are not in the Christian camp might have a clue that there is a difference in what might be perceived as “Christian” by those who are outside the church.

  23. Michael says:

    Dread,

    Are you feeling any better?

  24. Duane Arnold says:

    Wishing all a very Good New Year. Hopefully better than the last…

  25. Dread says:

    Michael

    I’m going to recover. I have no dangerous symptoms but I am not well. Thanks. Covid is evil.

  26. Michael says:

    Happy New Year, Duane…I would say it can’t get worse, but I said that last year…

  27. Michael says:

    “Covid is evil.”

    Yes…

  28. Eric says:

    Em: it was Job (13:15) Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him

    Officerhoppy: I love “Come from away”. So much feel-good music in there.

  29. JD says:

    Covid came down our chimney on Christmas Eve. Symptoms have run the gamut; fever, chills, headache, neck ache, loss of appetite, taste, sense of smell, disorientation, temporary loss of leg and arm function culminating last night. I thought I was going to die.
    I woke up able to walk again, thanks to the prayers of the saints. Happy New Year everyone.

  30. The New Victor says:

    Betty White’s former costar, Ed Asner, also died this year.

  31. Michael says:

    JD,

    We’ll be praying for you as well…

  32. The New Victor says:

    So did Cloris Leachman (I heard about that, I forgot she was on the MTM show) and Captain Stubing!

    Ted Knight is likely, “took you all long enough!”

  33. Em says:

    Eric, thank you for the reference

  34. Linn says:

    New Victor,

    When my students ask me what my favorite TV shows/movies are, I tell them that they are old, and most of the actors are old or no longer with us.

  35. Eric Britt says:

    Good Evening All!

    I am very thankful for this space and though I don’t comment at all I thought I would make an exception as we close out 2021 and welcome 2022. I am very saddened at what is going on in the world today and brokenhearted over the current state of American institutional Christianity. I have never been more excited to close out a year and welcome a new one with great hope, anticipation, fear and trepidation. Something that Andrew Murray wrote has been a tremendous blessing and encouragement to me over the last several years as there has been much difficulty…I pray that it is a source of encouragement and blessing.

    Grace, peace and much love to y’all!

    In Time of Trouble Say:

    First, He brought me here; it is by His will I am in this strait place: in that fact I will rest.

    Next, He will keep me here in His love, and give me grace to behave as His child.

    Then, He will make the trial a blessing, teaching me the lessons He intends me to learn, and working in me the grace He means to bestow.

    Last, In His good time He can bring me out again – how and when He knows.

    Let me say I am here,

    (1) By God’s appointment. (2) In his keeping.

    (3) Under His training. (4) For His time.

  36. Michael says:

    Eric Britt,

    Thank you and welcome…always good to hear from our readers.

  37. Eric Britt says:

    Michael, thank you for what you do and the faithful service…it is not unnoticed. HNY

  38. Babylon's Dread says:

    Death in 21… all causes 59 million
    Death by Covid19 since 2029 5.5 million
    Abortions 2021 … about 43 million

    Perspectives … Mask Up

    Happy New Year

  39. Dread says:

    *SINCE 2020

  40. Officerhoppy says:

    2020too

    Let’s hope not

  41. Duane Arnold says:

    “If you want to know what the world looks like religiously, Pew offers up this. The largest group of Christians is in sub-Saharan Africa at 650 million, followed by Latin America (585 million), Europe (535 million), Asia-Pacific (320 million) and North America (277 million). The future of Christianity does not lie in North America or even the West. One significant statistic is that there are some 120 million Chinese Christians, mostly evangelical in a nominally Communist state. The U.S. claims somewhere between 80 and 100 million evangelicals. Worth thinking about. What it does say is that Christianity is no longer white, it is brown and black, it is female and under 30. This is the Christian world of the future. Get used to it.”

    (From D. Virtue)

  42. Michael says:

    Duane,

    That should sober everyone up…but we’ll hear about how deficient these Christians are compared to us…guaranteed…

  43. Michael says:

    I’m listening to a course available on Audible on “The History of the United States”.

    The early lectures are done by Allen Guelzo, who is a capable historian.

    According to him, at every critical juncture in American history there is some sort of religious revival or renewal.

    He doesn’t go into great detail, but it’s an interesting hypotheses…

  44. Em says:

    Michael @ 10:29
    Let us hope…. and pray 🙏

  45. Dread says:

    I’m interested in this course you’re referencing.

    For a long time I’ve wondered how we can have a revival with so little consciousness of personal sin.

    We are simply living in an era of no conscience. Lots of accusation but no guilt.

  46. Michael says:

    The History of the United States 2nd edition

    By: The Great Courses, Allen C. Guelzo, Gary W. Gallagher, Patrick N. Allitt
    Narrated by: Allen C. Guelzo, Gary W. Gallagher, Patrick N. Allitt
    Series: The Great Courses: Modern History
    Length: 43 hrs and 23 mins
    Lecture
    Release date: 07-08-13
    Language: English
    Publisher: The Great Courses

  47. Michael says:

    I just finished Guelzo’s biography of Robert E. Lee…Gary Gallagher is my favorite Civil War historian by miles…

  48. Em says:

    AOC says the world will end in 12 years…… Well…. maybe…… but it won’t end the way she anticipates
    Come soon, Lord Jesus….. Did I see God blink?
    God keep

  49. bob1 says:

    FWIW…I’ve been culling my books lately.

    Today I came across a gem that I’d highly recommend —

    Meditating As a Christian: Waiting upon God by Peter Toon

    It’s a marvelous little book — the author contrasts Xn meditation from other types, goes into ‘deeper’ types of prayer like contemplative prayer and he covers other traditions like EO and RCC. Easy to follow!

    I think Rev. Toon (blessed be him memory) was a conservative Anglican and I think he was from Great Britain.

  50. Em says:

    FWIW
    My late husband and I had a small blue water sailboat. One night I was watching fish jumping from the rail and up the ramp came Lee Marvin. He called out, “those fish remind me of Hawaii!”
    Exploring YouTube this am I heard him “sing.” If you get some spare time listen on YouTube to him sing a sad song, “I was born under a wandering star.”. One line says ” when I get to heaven, tie me to a tree, cuz if you don’t you know where I will be.”
    I wish it were that simple. Today heaven and hell get laughed at. This is just awful! ! !
    God keep and keep praying for this lost planet.

  51. Michael says:

    Em,

    I think it may be just that some of us think that the faith is about much more than heaven and hell…

  52. Em says:

    Good point, Michael, good point. But…
    One has to enter in to discover the riches in the here and now, I think – dunno
    It seems to me that mankind was created as a witness to Gods love, righteousness AND grace.
    A vindication of His power? Dunno

  53. Em says:

    Just listened to John Denver singing “Rookie Mountain High”
    Colorado is where I was born… ” raining fire from the sky…”
    My nurse daughter went to school in Colorado Springs. A former bicycle racer, she. loved to get out and ride west (Garden of the Gods). My mother and stepfather warned her that it was dangerous to ride on summer afternoons, but she went anyway – ended up lying in a ditch as one of their famous thunderstorms rolled through…
    Just taking advantage of dear Michael’s blog to share a memory…. again…. maybe give some a break from the angst we’re going through….. maybe…. 🙆

  54. Michael says:

    You are welcome to post your memories anytime…

  55. Linnea says:

    Em, love to hear your stories. When I was young and had a ton of energy, some of us from work would go hike our mountains after work. More than once, we got caught in one of those instant thunderstorms, with lightning striking all around us. I wouldn’t have trader those adventures for anything. Go on your daughter and God bless the Rocky Mountains!

  56. Linnea says:

    That would be “good on your daughter”…

  57. Em says:

    Thursday morning and we are literally snowed in…. An avalanche at mile post 11 has the snowplows unable to clear our road….. We can’t get out to the horses or even out the front door….
    Uhhh, God?

  58. Xenia says:

    This is Christmas Eve in Russian Ortholandia, and as my husband and I were reading the Luke Christmas story this morning, I saw that the Roman government required everyone to make the trip to their home towns, at their own expense, for the purpose of figuring out how much to tax everyone. There is no mention that Joseph and Mary complained about this, they just went to Bethlehem even though the Theotokos was on the verge of giving birth.

    Can you imagine the uproar if our government suggested such a thing today?

  59. Michael says:

    Xenia,

    That’s a fascinating observation…

  60. Michael says:

    Em,

    Praying for some sun and melting snow…I’d be going bonkers too…

  61. bob1 says:

    Xenia’s comment on gov’t taxes in the time of Joseph and Mary:

    LOL.

    Not to be irreverent…but truth is truth.

    Probably correct to say that they weren’t followers of Ayn Rand…

  62. Em says:

    Does “Orthlandia” say Merry Christmas?
    Hope your Holiday is full of the joy of the Lord, Xenia!

  63. Xenia says:

    Thanks, Em. God bless you!

  64. Dread says:

    Well at my house it’s the eve of Mary, my wife’s given name on the day of her birth Ja 7 — she will like this reminder

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