Things I Think…

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44 Responses

  1. bob1 says:

    #4 Yeah. I had the same thought, Michael. Whatever happened to sitting down and actually looking at an issue without rancor? Seems like everyone wants to tell you what to do and think these days. I guess independent thinking is maybe dangerous?

  2. Dread says:

    Begg will be fine. He’ll probably make more friends than he loses. The issue is one every family has to face because traditional marriage is over as a norm. Conservatives will be dragged along until they relent or disappear. I don’t have to be mad at him or them for being mad at him.

    Loneliness probably was the key factor in my son’s self-destruction. He began to cycle into the darkness of it in 2020.

    Taylor Swift… to this moment I could not tell you a single song but I strangely can tell you several to whom she’s been pair bonded. Her current beast and princess pairing is fairly entertaining and of no consequence at all except as future material. Her wealth and fame shield her from pretty much any worries. I hope to resume my disinterest by next Monday.

    As for pets … my life has been devoid of them. If #5 became the main issue for me I might get an orange Tabby … but probably not. Don’t need plants or animals. Tending to one little sheep is enough for my life.

  3. bob1 says:

    #9 I live in a small town in the upper Midwest. Today at the local grocery I asked a young checkout guy who he was rooting for on Sunday. He immediately said, “Not Taylor Swift.” I thought this was extremely funny, somehow. I almost said, “Didn’t know she was suiting up!”

  4. Michael says:


    It happened when politics became more important than the Gospel….nuance died among that group long before…

  5. Michael says:


    If I have a major concern socially it’s the loneliness that comes from the division and loss of community.

    I fear this especially in our young people…who have no place to gather…but when they do gather have so many rules about speech and behavior that they would have been better off at home.

    No wonder they drug themselves to ease the pain…or worse, as you have tragically noted.

    When I was Trey’s age I had an endless assortment of friends, acquaintances and potential dating partners…my boy has little of the above and little hope of finding such when you have nowhere to go.

    I literally weep for him…20 years ago he would have had to fight them off…

    He…is not alone…we have to figure some things out.

    As for the pets…if not for my cats they would have buried me long ago…I was thanking Trey’s mom again today for understanding after Smokey died that without a cat, I too will perish…so she moved Liam over here.

    As someone wrote on Facebook the other day…the only time a cat ever broke my heart was when it’s own heart stopped beating…

  6. Alan says:

    I’m all for pets. I am just lousy at taking care of them and too set in my ways to adjust but that orange Tabby might break through.

    The problem of nonbinary and same sex relationships is made much sharper by the fact that everything in our culture has made pairing much more dangerous and daunting to navigate.

    Young people connect for sex and not for relationships. They also can connect with cyber-nobody so much easier than talking to a human. I don’t envy them.

    The plague of loneliness is horrific.

    As for these other problems would to God that we knew how to think theologically. The rejection of Paul has impoverished us in that regard. Watching the Jewish rabbi weave his creational monotheism through the revelation of Christ and the reception of the Spirit and apply it to the thorny moral problems of Gentile inclusion and the de-idolazation of the church is magnificent.

    We think in either/or legal categories. Paul had incredible abilities to show us the ways of the glory of God with incarnational and spirit filled wonder. Always calling us to worship the one true God by the cross of Jesus and in the power of the Spirit.

  7. Linn says:

    Lots to think about here!
    Hibbs: I wonder if he has ever applied 1 John 4 to his own preaching? It might bring some insight.
    Alistair Begg: I do think those things (attending gay weddings) are up to conscience. I don’t think I would be able to attend a gay wedding because of my own beliefs on that topic, but I would do so quietly. I wouldn’t make a big deal over it.
    Taylor Swift: I teach tweens. The Swift is a big deal. And, I think the people involved in conspiracy theories about her are less mature than my 4th/5th graders. Since I am a diehard 49er fan, I hope they win, too!
    Loneliness: I know no better way to deal with it than to have a pet. The pet cares for you, but you also have to care for it. When my power went off for 24 hours over the weekend, having my cat around made a big difference for me. Flip side-people do spoil their pets, but they also spoil their children. Why does any kid need $200 tennis shoes?

  8. Michael says:


    I’m a traditionalist when it comes to matters of sexuality and marriage.

    However, I can see where in some cases it might be better to go than not…each situation needs to be assessed individually.

    “And, I think the people involved in conspiracy theories about her are less mature than my 4th/5th graders”

    I’ll say the amen…

  9. Michael says:


    I finally sat down and listened to a couple Taylor Swift songs…and I was not moved.

    Having said that, she’s the biggest star since Michael Jackson and maybe since Elvis…and all the filth thrown her way has me rooting for the Chiefs…

  10. The New Victor says:

    Taylor Swift is a clever lyricist, I’ll give her that. I watched The Greatest Night in Pop on Netflix about the making of We Are The World. It was great, such a feat that almost didn’t happen and stars of the 60s, 70s and 80s who could gather in a room and make a single on one night with no rehearsals. We’ll never have such talent again, no disrespect to Ms. Swift.

    My cousin has a DDiv in the Reformed Tradation. One of her sons is gay and married. I’m not sure how I’d deal with that if it were one of my kids. I’m not in a place to judge anyone else.

    Not a sports fan, not sure what I’ll be doing Sunday… I’m in 49ers territory as well. Our company is moving at the end of the year next to Great America and the niners stadium.

    If someone sent that pet article to shame you, Michael, that was uncalled for. My tag line is “love me, love my dog,” but I found some truth in it in that some people tend to over emphasize their pet friends over people. Maybe I need to read it again…

  11. DavidH says:

    Jack Hibbs is a fraud and a charlatan. His church members essentially took the Chino School Board – book banning, exclusionary policies, etc.

  12. Captain Kevin says:

    #9 – Good article

    #10 – Ridiculous article

  13. Dan from Georgia says:

    Having 2 dogs has been a balm and soothing touch to my wife’s and my own lonliness and pain.

  14. Josh says:

    Loneliness I have become all too familiar with. If this were a different venue, I would use the biggest swears against it. The ones that start with G’s and F’s and D’s. It seems that my time of loneliness will be ending soon, and I am more thankful for that than anything. All the morals and doctrines and standards we harp about, I was willing to bend or throw away in order to fight off loneliness. I survived, barely.

    Made me wonder if those people we fight against all the time are just trying to stave off loneliness. Just trying to survive. If so, my new advice is to survive. Do what you have to do. Don’t worry about the rest of us a-holes. Get through it. Marry someone your grandma doesn’t approve of. Grandma – shock them and approve anyway. Help them survive. Approve, consent, and celebrate another person finding a way to wake up tomorrow morning. Stop tying s%&# in knots and making an already impossible life more difficult for yourself and everyone around you. Jesus is in favor of you being nice to people and he’s in favor of those people surviving. If what they are doing is sin, HE ALREADY PAID FOR IT.

    I can’t survive in a conservative setting anymore. Why does conservative / liberal have to be the gatekeeper of fellowship? Why can’t I do what I have to do to survive, and accept you doing whatever you have to do to survive? Why do you have to think exactly like me, or me like you?

    Finally, Taylor Swift is a songwriter lie very few before her. Her music isn’t written for me, but I can appreciate the talent. My daughter is a huge Swifty, and talked me into covering a Taylor Swift song with her on Tic Toc last night. It was fun, and the laughs with my 20 year old daughter will fuel my survival for many more days.

  15. Michael says:


    I emphasize my cats over most of the people I know and the people I know, know that.

    What I have learned over a lifetime…and especially over the last couple decades dealing with “Christians”..has left me longing for the day when I don’t have to be responsible for anyone and can just focus on good deeds for cats.

    They actually appreciate the effort.

    it is an affront to my intelligence to blame pets for the declining birthrate in this country…when the cost of simply surviving alone is barely within reach of most.

  16. Michael says:

    “Made me wonder if those people we fight against all the time are just trying to stave off loneliness.”

    I think there is more than a little truth here.

    What does one do when they don’t fit into one of the multiplicity of silos we’ve divided into?

    How does one survive in a culture where friendship is based on agreement over vaccines, border issues, and an orange reprobate?

    I woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning…

  17. Michael says:

    the kind of sacrifices and moral integrity we expect single Christians to make are only plausible if they belong to a vital Christian community that offers true friendship, companionship, and comfort …without that they will fall prey to loneliness and the temptations of the “world’…

  18. Reuben says:

    I still can’t believe the Taylor Swift thing is an actual thing.

  19. Michael says:


    When people become totally unhinged from reality…there is no end to the insanity.

    Make no mistake…it’s insanity.

  20. Reuben says:

    I finally saw a political meme this morning on Facebook, something about how she writes songs about the wrong guy and she is also voting for the wrong guy. I almost threw my phone, Michael. I simply cannot believe people are loosing their minds over just another celebrity relationship.

    Good to see you Josh!

  21. Michael says:


    We now dip people in acid until we see what political persuasion they are…the rest of a human beings personhood no longer matters…

  22. Reuben says:

    This is fact …

    The conspiracy crap really makes me mad. The NFL is apparently conspiring with the DNC? People have lost their minds. Flat out lost their minds.

  23. Michael says:


    It’s saddens me to a degree…I used to count many of these folks as my friends…

  24. Rob Murphy says:

    I dig the Black Stuff big time. Wicklow Waterfalls is my favorite and I highly recommend Relax Your Cacks and Arthur’s Choice in The Black Stuff limited release soap line. I think I like the soap because it reminds me of all the homemade hippie soap I ran into growing up in Mt Shasta in the 70s. Smell, nostalgia, joy…. I like the stuff and his story and being Irish. plus, I’m a smelly sweaty beast and I need all the help I can get in the olfactory offense category. ha.

  25. Dan from Georgia says:

    I used to have a hard time years back in coming to this website and finding mainly arguments over Lutheran theology and stuff I couldn’t relate to, but I hung around. Much has changed since those days. I am glad I stuck around to see a conversation like we are having here about lonliness, soap, music, cats (and dogs on my part) and political stuff that gets me riled up, but am afraid to vent elsewhere as my salvation will be called into question.

  26. Michael says:


    I’ll try those…I’m stuck on Black Stout cause it smells like my homeland…

  27. Michael says:


    I miss talking about theology, but I end up talking to myself… 🙂

  28. Dan from Georgia says:


    Probably would have done me a lot of good to pay some more attention to some of the theological discussions back then.


    Many of them, though, got kinda ugly as you recall!

    Thanks for keeping PhxP open! Definitely has been encouraging lately in these difficult times.

  29. filistine says:

    “jackhibbs” is my new cuss word for 2024.

    The Colson (off)Center points out a few interesting facts, but draws ungracious conclusions. No gospel there.

    #3 I have enough of my own faults and failures to address that it leaves little time to condemn others, but I do make exceptions…

    We have catered a number of gay weddings. The money deposited and spent exactly like straight cash. I have taught numerous gay students over the years and could do my job thoroughly and professionally without worrying about affirming or celebrating their identities any more than I needed to affirm or celebrate straight identity.

  30. bob1 says:

    Yeah. Their content always seems like they have a hidden agenda. And as Fil said, “No gospel there.” They seem to be leveraging their founder’s name to further said agenda.

  31. Jean says:

    As someone who is not tuned in to who is who in Evangelicalism, I don’t know if this guy is considered fringe or not, but talk about discrediting Christianity…,back%20into%20the%20White%20House.

  32. Michael says:

    He’s a fringe charismatic nut case…been around a long time and like many, found politics to be a successful grift.

  33. filistine says:

    Isn’t AW the son of Merrill Wommack, the evangelist with fiery ties to our backwoods?

  34. Michael says:

    I believe so…haven’t heard that name in ages…

  35. filistine says:

    you and I are both climbing up the old ladder…MW crashed his plane near Beaver Marsh, Oregon and was burned badly, got saved, and became an evangelist, if I’m not mistaken…

  36. Michael says:

    Yes to both…I think I’ve fallen off the ladder twice today.
    I think Andrew is a grandson…

  37. Jean says:

    As someone who believes there is a satan, I must conclude it is working overtime in America.

  38. Michael says:


    I concur…

  39. filistine says:

    so far I haven’t been able to find a family link to Merrill Womack and Andrew Wommack…and different last name spellings is a possible clue, and that Merrill began his ministry in 1962 while Andrew in 1972. I am fully prepared to stand corrected…

  40. Michael says:

    I’ll have to stand there with you, so I’ll retract for both of us and lay down…

  41. Captain Kevin says:

    I’ve seen some AW videos. Couldn’t stomach him. The comments on them just left me amazed at how gullible and undiscerning so many people are.

  42. covered says:

    I don’t think I have posted here since I was accused of being a blasphemer for being a pastor and owning a gun. Just felt the urge to say that I think Michael has done an amazing job in keeping us thinking. Thank you Michael!

  43. Michael says:


    Thanks…thinking about buying one myself…things are getting crazy here…

  44. Dan from Georgia says:

    Covered and Michael,

    I too have and still am considering arming myself. I am more afraid of MAGA and the other crazies trying something someday.

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