Things I Think
1. The social media campaign of last week to #Free Saeed was successful…not just because of the numbers involved, but because you were heard. Congress has called for a hearing on Thursday morning on the issue and the ACLJ states that this was a result of “social media”. Now, as one of my co-workers said, we have moved the mountain, now we need to push it into the sea.We need to mobilize that great mass of people again before that hearing. If you haven’t signed up on the new page, please do so and check for this weeks action plan to #FreeSaeed.
2. Mark Driscoll and his business associates have done an outstanding job of deflecting all the media attention to the sins of the messengers who brought news of his. Such is the way of the church these days that people actually fall for it.
3. We who are “Bible believers” have to change the way we think about and communicate the difficult passages of Scripture. When I was a child the story of the Flood was always the story of Noah and the Ark…accompanied by cute critter pictures and ending with a rainbow. It wasn’t until much later in life that I understood that the real picture would have involved tens of thousands of floating corpses around the ark and the rainbow shined on their bloated bodies after the waters receded. We avoided that truth…and in doing so missed the whole message of the passage, which is about God’s hatred of sin and His willingness to destroy that which is unrighteous. That leads to a skewed view of God. People today see the implications of the story that aren’t on the felt board…and we have to learn to communicate the real truth about the Flood and the Canaanite genocide with clarity, compassion, and awe.
4. Everything I just said about the difficult passages of Scripture applies double to discussions about gender roles in the church and culture…simply saying that “God declares it and that settles it” won’t work in an information age with so many conflicting voices.
5. I can only ask for your forgiveness and understanding…December is a thick, cold blanket of despair for me. I’m doing the best I can.
6. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom…so when you have a God from whom there is nothing to fear, you worship an idol.
7. The fear of the Lord does not nullify the grace of the Lord…it makes you truly thankful for it.
8. The Incarnation is the most awesome doctrine of the Christian faith…in a world where men want to become gods, God became man and subjected Himself to us, for us. The wonder of this is beyond my ability to process.
9. One simple act of kindness can heal multiple years of offense and grief. Look for opportunities to commit one…
10. Do what you would hope others would do for you if you were Saeed Abedini… #FreeSaeed.
Re: #5, I completely understand. For years, I have been haunted by the Christmas season. It has nothing to do with the celebration of Christ, but everything to do with the celebration of family. The sadness of my past has prevented me from celebrating the present.
If not for Trey I wouldn’t acknowledge the season at all except theologically.
My favorite day of the year is Dec 26th…because it’s all over and hope for a new year takes the place of the pain.
Thank you for walking with me…
2. Beware those who block the door to truth. A person only obfuscates the truth when he has something to hide. A person desperately trying to hold on to his position is the most dangerous of all creatures.
3. I disagree with this on sooo many levels.
a.) I think you are missing the point of the Noah story. The point is the same as the Adam story, the Red Sea story, and the Jesus story. The point is that God provided a way. That is something to be thankful for, and act of grace from a merciful God. Again, not one person died who did not deserve it.
b.) It would be completely inappropriate to teach children about thousands of bloated corpses. All the things that you made light of – the ark, the animals, the rainbow- are actually right there in the bible. The floating corpses are not. Now, Noah’s story is rich with a lifetime full of lessons, but they cannot all be learned at once, and not all will be digestible by children.
c.) The reason that you are even considering the deeper implications of the Noah story is that someone taught you the flannel board version when you were a child. Give another child that same learning opportunity. Fill their minds with wonder at the greatness of a God who provided the way for salvation through the flood. Allow their minds to wrestle with that for the next 50 years like yours has. Don’t stunt their growth by trying to cram your 50 year old lesson into their 8 year old brain.
4. I agree that everyone needs to revisit their beliefs on gender roles. How many are scriptural and how many are cultural? See my answer at number two. If the truth is on our side, we will have nothing to hide in the process.
6-10. I’ll just say amen!
I am at lunch right now, but I was thinking earlier that it would be useful to have a list of the committee members who will attend the hearing about Saeed.
Steve is on that…and we’ll publish it here as well.
The incarnation is shocking because it comes into a world where men of power were so often deified. The religions of the world were riddled with man-gods who struck fear and awe into hearts by sword and conquest. The revelation of God in Christ as a king who made himself powerless is indeed beyond comprehension.
I think no one is taking a greater hit by the internet effort to liberate Saeed Abedini than Michael who made himself invisible to bring focus to #FreeSaeed.
I am troubled by the matter with Janet Mefferd… more light should shine on how that unfolded.
I’m not suggesting we terrify Sunday School children with the reality of what happened at the Flood.
I am suggesting that we have lost the tension between the gift of God and what its cost was and between the grace of God and the justice and wrath of God.
You often have said that all those people deserved hell and that is true.
We also deserved hell…and if we don’t understand what we were saved from it minimizes what we have been saved to.
“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom…so when you have a God from whom there is nothing to fear, you worship an idol.”
Ummmm…. stealing this. With credit of course. 🙂
I hope you are well my friend.
“The only thing better than a good Reuben sandwich, is saving the other half of it for lunch the next day.” – Papias
I am quite content to remain invisible this week if we can affect this mans release.
My mind boggles at what he is enduring…
I’m hanging in there, my friend.
You can always use all you finds useful here without worry of credit. 🙂
“We also deserved hell…and if we don’t understand what we were saved from it minimizes what we have been saved to.”
Completely agree. I guess I just missed the point of the Noah reference. Not particularly Noah, but in regards to difficult passages, I think we soften them too much. We try to lessen their impact. Make them less offensive. I think the result is the same as you describe. We don’t understand God, and we have no clue what is at stake.
But you’re a Calvinist, Michael, you should feel right at home in December. I always thought the Pacific Northwest was perfect Reformed theology weather: Stormy and menacing. SoCal’s for evangelicals.
When I (try to) explain Bible stories to my kids, I am often struck by the reality and “harshness” of the things we discuss – the Flood, the Exodus,the Crucifixtion….we do want to paint things in a way that seems more… palatable. Sometimes, I just have to say it like it is and let the facts speak for themselves.
God has done some things that we may never understand in this life.
But if we understand that this life is merely a prerequesite to the next life, then maybe we will hold our tongue and accept that there’s more to learned than we could possibly imagine.
I can agree with your view point about Christmas.Spending the day with my non christian family can be a real drain on my soul sometimes.The the women want to watch chick flicks all day and that drives me nuts.
The joy of election is best expressed in sub tropical temps.
Even Catholics know this…Mary is most often spotted in Mexico… 🙂
I find this whole thing challenging.
When Trey and I talk about these things he gets very disturbed by the realities implied and he does so without me mentioning them.
I never really wrestled with these things until the last couple of years…
I draw the line at chick flicks…can’t go there. 😉
Best Chick Flick ever? Steel Magnolias?
Josh – I won’t even go there.
Best Christmas movie – Die Hard. (OK – not typical Christmas fare, but it takes place during Christmas, so it counts!)
Runner up – Lethal Weapon. 🙂
And with that…. I gotta get back to work…
I think the reality of the flood, the crucifixion, etc should be explained to children the same as the “facts of life.” We tell them the truth…but the truth of what they need to hear at the time… and when they ask more questions, we answer truthfully. I remember when my daughter asked “how does the seed the man plants get into the mothers’ tummy?” When I told her, (as gently as possible) she was shocked!
Underlayers of Driscoll drama.
1. He was confronted by a woman.
2. She did not submit to his (male/pastoral/teacher) authority.
Steel Magnolias and Terms of Endearment.
Oh, and if you have never seen The Joy Luck Club, you have missed a gem of a film. Fantastic film.
Rob, I wonder what would have happened had a man confronted Driscoll???
I want to know what happened in the Janet Mefferd case…
I want to know if anyone is covering it…
I want to know if she is under ongoing restrictions because of it…
I want to know about this.
And I am on record as saying that I thought she was unreasonable. That is not the same as being put under constraint because of your opinions or questions. She should not be censured, at most a moderating response but not censure complete with being censored. This is sticking in my craw… tell me if I am wrong.
Mark Driscoll is my Hero and he should be yours too!
Thee are new charges of plagiarism today…and when we have #freedsaeed…I will endeavor to find out all I can on this matter.
I think there is more than a little truth to what Rob is saying…
“Steel Magnolias and Terms of Endearment.
Oh, and if you have never seen The Joy Luck Club, you have missed a gem of a film. Fantastic film.”
Along with “Fried Green Tomatoes” and “The Divine Revelations of the Ya Ya Sisterhood” gotta go down in as all times in the Chick Flick Hall of Shame!
“The joy of election is best expressed in sub tropical temps.”
It’s 82 here today. We have plenty of room here in sleepy east coast central Florida. Well, not in my condo, but the area is underdeveloped by Florida standards.
That’s how many layers of clothing I have on…
Your #9 made me smile so big!
Best chick flick for a reformation girl- Lady Jane. Okay carry on.
I don’t know that it’s at the top of chickflick list, but ‘Sense and Sensibility’ gets me feeling dusty-eyed and I don’t have to shave my face for about three days after I watch it. Not to mention I attain to a higher level of accessorizing for up to a week…
Depends on the ‘chick’ – my wife likes to watch Commando with me. 🙂
Jim needs to keep his 82’s to himself… 🙂
No, I take that back he needs to share the warmth.
Walk to Remember or The Notebook
Oh, and best chick flick…
Come on Noms…Pretty in Pink?
Went out riding on my bicycle last night it was 30 degrees, got in about ten miles. I did 17 today I started a bit earlier.
I am also pretty upset about the Driscoll Caner issues but the entire doug phillips thing really ticks me off. The stuff that is coming out is awful.
Give us a chick flick, Brian.
Notting Hill, The Lake House, While You Were Sleeping, Serendipity, Rambo Gets Married!!! That’s the tip of the iceberg. I love me some chick flicks! 🙂
I think the rampant chick flick thread is making me nauseous. :-(*)
You go E. That’s a confident man!
I guess Pretty Woman qualifies? I love that one. 🙂
Red Dawn, Red Dawn Two, the Expendables 1-2 Saw 1-900000^10
Actually Where the Red Fern Grows, The Yearling, The Acorn People Patch Adams
Saw… 🙂 That’s funny Brian.
Sorry Derek! 🙂 Josh, There’s so many more that I could name and Pretty Woman qualifies. I recall an NFL player a few years back stated he liked the Lifetime Network. That shook people up!!
Lara Croft: Tomb Raider and Resident Evil are pretty good chick flix.
Is Braveheart a chick flick? One of my favs….
Neo’s GF in the matrix series is badass as well. Excellent chick flick.
I hear Rambo lives in BuenO Park.
I see Mrs. Schlueter’s name has popped up as the “producer” who resigned. It’s interesting that she would rail against posts and such being removed when she is, or at least was, guilty of the very same things. She just can’t seem to work with anyone very long but it does seem she takes these stands whenever a big name is involved. I dunno why she does this but my personal experience and history with Mrs. Schlueter is that Mrs. Mefferd is probably better off without Mrs. Schlueter.
I think this story is far from over. In fact I saw this on a private forum I belong to for sydicated radio hosts…..the consensus seems to be Driscoll is a plaigerist, Mefferd is a wannabe Piers Morgan and Schlueter is an opportunist looking for a new radio gig…..I couldn’t print the actual responses as this is a family blog…..unless of course you $%^& with Packer 🙂
That’s funny Phil sounds like a good forum 🙂
It certainly can be….you should hear the stuff they say about Rush lol 🙂
Best chick flick? without a doubt: Apocolypse Now.
Lets try another round some of your favorite movies and maybe a phase as to why.
Sergeant York It dealt with some very very difficult issues in the context of a more rural America.
Shoes of the Fisherman This current pope sort of reminds me of the lead character.
Anything Lord of the Ring because its LoR and fun I like long movies makes me feel like I am getting my 10+$ for it. 🙂
Dr. Strangelove because it is so realistic in its parody of parody.
Not a movie but on of the funniest tv series ever mystery science theater 3000. Some of the humor was a bit off.
Best mini series Jesus of Nazareth
Favorite YouTube series, The Atomic Cafe
bert the turddle
I thought Good Morning Vietnam was an amazing movie. Robin Williams was just brilliant.
There’s a movie that came out about ten years ago of the book of John. The script is exactly the text from John.
I really enjoyed watching that movie as they portrayed the life of Jesus pretty well. It is hard sometimes for people in the 21st century to relate to how they lived in the 1st. Shaking the dust off your sandals makes more sense when you see both the streets and the footwear from that time.
Best chick flick? without a doubt: Apocolypse Now.
Spot on! I love the smell of napalm in the morning.
@58,63 I totally agree. Nothing like the smell of napalm in the morning. it smells like……..victory!
Never realized there were so men on this blog site with a sensitve side.If I were married I would have to adapt…….till then not!
I wouldn’t dare post the chick flicks I like.