Saturday, August 30, 2003

 
I've noticed a lot of quizzes out there, helping people determine what kind of ______ they are. Toni seems to be adept at finding these things. "What country are you? What smell of soap are you? What actor are you?" Well, here's some quizzes that I think would be just as important to have. Probably, some of these are already out there. Just don't expect me to put them together.

-What kind of roadkill are you?
-Which plankton do you relate to the best?
-Which mass-murderer would you get along with the best?
-What kind of stool sample are you?
-Which disease best describes you?
-which forgotten leftover growing in the fridge are you?

...and so forth.

Speaking of irrelevant things, how about those 'my child was eagle of the month at Eyrie Elementary' bumper stickers? I'd like to see some along these lines:

-My child was 'Gastropod of the month' at Sluggish Elementary
-My son was 'Heretic of the quarter' at Finney Middle School
-My child was 'Pusstule of the month' at Scabb Elementary
-My daughter is an 'Outstanding Commrade' at Stalin Elementary
-Mt child was 'Victim of the Year' at Rodney King Middle School

Wouldn't some of those look great on the back of a minivan?


Thursday, August 28, 2003

 
Rhetoric.

Oh, we've heard lots of it from the Christian community, especially the reformed theonomic type folks.

"We gotta do this to reclaim the culture! All you Christians need to be doing this! How come Christians will do _______ and won't do _____?!?"

We've heard it all, and will continue to hear it 'til Kingdom come.

If I sound like I'm against such stuff, you'd be incorrect. Such corrections are useful when presented in proper context. Of course, they're more often than not given in unusual if not offensive manners. Or, they're presented with enough ambiguity (or absolute precision, take your pick) to overwhelm the reader/listener into utter inaction.

For me, or anyone else for that matter, to get a blog and state what's wrong with the world and what we individually need to do about it is about as useless as tits on a boar hog. I'll be either preaching to the choir, or railing to the foolish. Not much middle ground there.

There is a point to all of this. Many folks want to look for the root of the nation's problems, and determine what we can do individually to affect reform of them. Humanists, Environmentalists, Socialists... this is their primary tool. it is not, however, the primary tool of the Christian, contrary to popular belief.

Christianity is led from the Head down, not the body up.

Lemme put my foot in my mouth up to the knee. I believe that there is not a single problem facing America that is not rooted in irresponsibility and accountability. Further, that responsibility and accountability is a result of discipline. Note that there are individuals who are disciplined, accountable and responsible, however, the consituates of the US as a whole body are far from it.

And so are Christians as a body.

Why? Why does irresponsible and undiciplined and unacountable described the typical American Christian? Answer: This describes the typical American Church leader- Irresponsible, undisciplined and unaccountable. Us sheep go where we're led.

The typical preachers in America are like the fools of Jeremiah 8. They will do what the flock wants and say what they want to hear, rather than be faithful to the Lord.

"No, we can't ask people to be members of the church, that would imply acountability."

"Okay, let's have grape juice instead of wine. After all, wine is sinful, and we wouldn't want you to have to examine your own heart before the Lord's table. That would be unkind."

"Oh, I understand. All that prayer and preaching the gospel stuff is too much. We'll just sing and bark and present nice plays on stage instead. Is that better for you?"

"Hey, you can live anyway you want to in Christ. We wouldn't even THINK of trying to exercise discipline in our church. We're a loving church."

...And we wonder why the culture is so screwed up.

It's not going to get fixed, either, unless the leaders of the churches of this nation get their heads out of their arses and serve the Lord and not their paychecks. God Himself is applying discipline to His people because of his love for us, and any church that does not discipline the flock cannot claim to love the people of God. You will only discipline those that you love. If a church leader won't do this thing, then he does not love them, but fears them. And does not fear God.

With discipline comes the responsibility and accountability on an individual basis. Without it, the state will be responsible for us.

Ain't socialism great?

We deserve it. Christ have mercy.


Theognome

Wednesday, August 27, 2003

 
Today was a first for me.

I had several presentations to give, and one of them was for a couple who owned a jewelry store. They had lots of persons writing bad checks and folks not making their payments on their monthly bills. If I recall, the Bible calls this 'stealing' (Ex:20:15). This couple also spoke almost no English, but rather spoke Spanish. So, I took my wife, Toni (the purdiest of all of the girls in the whole universe) with me for the day so that she could translate for me.

So, she got to see first hand what it's like to be a salesman- cold-calling, presenting, closing, overcoming objections, etc..., and I got to give her kisses all day instead of waiting 'til I got home.

She did a great job translating! I'm as dumbfounded at the fact that the Lord has blessed me so richly through the giving to me this wife as I am that He bled for me on the cross. Why should I, as pathetic as I am, receive so much for so little (if any) faithfulness?

It does amaze me, though just how numb business owners can be to daylight theft. When bum checks are written or terms violated, it is no different than breaking in and raiding the place. It's still theft, and for a small business owner, this kind of theft is the most insidious. And yet, they say, "No, I don't want to make my customers angry and lose them. I wouldn't use any kind of collection service." (Note: my company specializes in diplomatic resolution. I won't get into detail, but 'making customers angry' is something we rarely if ever do.) But it seems strange that they don't want to lose thieves. We'll put locks on doors and alarms in the building to prevent thieves breaking in, but when the thief comes in during business hours, we leave him cookies and milk, and say, "Please, come and steal again. We want your business!"

How foolish, and yet so pervasive. We're so used to being bled that we don't mind when another leech is slapped on our skin. It's a lot like the article "Dukes Nail" over on the transworld articles section. We'll cry about it, but do nothing for fear of losing something we never had in the first place. Makes perfect sense.

Theognome

Tuesday, August 26, 2003

 
My cat has no brains.

Which does not mean that I believe all cats to be lacking intellect. Indeed, I have met and even had resident in my household in the past many brilliant felines, capable of astounding cogitations, and showing keen insight to the manipulation of their environs.

It's just that the cat I now have is dumber than a box of rocks.

She does have a redeeming feature- she's a pretty cat. Black and white and very fluffy. But, alas, uttery brainless. she's never had a thought in her life. She just sits on the floor like a black and white carpet tumor looking at her world with a blank stare. She can't even give you those typical cat 'get out of my life' looks.

No brains.

She fears insects, rodents, refrigerators and scraps of paper. She runs in terror at the sound of a clock. She hides in dark places for days after a serious trauma, such as a loud Volkswagen driving down the street.

She was a feral cat, taken from the pound by my sister some eight or so years ago. two years later, my sister gave her to me because she was too stupid to live in her house (now that's saying something, if you knew my sister). So she's somewhere around nine years old, and has never rid herself of the feral nature, even though she has been strictly a house cat, and never goes outside.

Clueless meow.

If you come to my home, you won't see her. She fears all. She's big, fat and stupid. I would say fat, dumb and happy, but I can't imagine something that fearful being happy. It can't be that she has a mental disorder, for that would imply that a mental capacity of some kind existed at some point to get out of order in the first place.

Not even a nucleus


Monday, August 25, 2003

 
Pieter Friedrich wrote an exellent article on Democracy. Check it out.
 
AS I was driving along the freeway today, I passed an old brown Toyota, or at least most of it was brown, belching smoke and whining loudly as it lurched down the lane. It had several bumper stickers (don't all cars like that have them?) and among them was the classic, WWJD?. Am I the only one who's first thought is 'Jesus would first get a better car'?

It is rare that I see a bumper sticker that actually makes a statement (from a Christian perspective) which is biblical and edifying. Most of them are either sappy or ambiguous. I did not come to know the Lord until I was in my late twenties, and I can remember what I thought of such bumper stickers in my unregenerate days. trust me, it was not stuff that I am comfortable putting on a blog.

My personal opinion is that most folks who put such stuff on their cars (or whatever) are not doing it in order to present the gospel as they drive, but rather because they identify with the stickers themselves. NOTW on the back of a Bronco is not a presentation of the gospel, but rather identifies the owner of said Ford as an adherant of modern Evangelical Christendom, which non-Christians like I was think of as stupid, sappy idiots. And when you consider how such messages are presented, there's some validity to the criticism.

Like it or not, those pithy phrases on the backs of cars, on billboards and everywhere else are what the world sees first from the Church in America. Is that what we are called to preach in the marketplace? We are called to be a witness, a light amongst darkness. This demands relationship. Sharing the truth our our Lord and Savior to the lost must be done person to person, not catchy slogan to person. And even if we don't think that that is what we are doing, it is in fact what we are doing. Those catchy slogans tend to cheapen the gospel, as they did for me and for many others that I knew in my earlier days. They become mantras, the first statements given when someone does ask, "Why do you have NOTW on your car?", scripts to recite rather than going through the trouble of giving the Gospel.

I know that not every bumper sticker or everyone who has them is caught up in this manner, but it is none the less pervasive. And it is just another symptom of an ineffective, abdicating Church. The typical church in America knows no doctrine, reads no Bible, and preaches no Gospel. It's a place where folks get together on Sundays to be entertained, and shout about the 'Kingdom that is to come'. The bumper stickers reflect this. Isn't it queer how an effort to be 'not of this world' makes folks act just like it?


 
Here's a poem that I wrote a coupla years ago, and Toni asked me put put it on here. As you can see, I'm not much of a poet, but Toni likes to encourage me anyway.


Chimes in the Wind

A warm wind blows strong at midnight past my door. Chimes I have hung ring out each gust as it hurls by. Is this the same wind?
A cold wind strolls slowly through the hillside pines. The trees moan slightly with each lazy gust. Is this the same wind?
A strong wind blasts madly into the mountain. Rocks are split into pieces as the Lord passes by. Is this the same wind?
A cunning wind tugs gently at my faith. The children are tossed playfully into deceit. Is this the same Wind?
A troublesome wind rips violently through the fool's house. His purse is filled with empty promises. Is this the same wind?
A divine wind puffs effortlessly upon the threshing floor. Sin is carried eternally into the lake of fire.
Is this the same wind?

Sunday, August 24, 2003

 
Our church is a small one, a mission work of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church. We meet in the arts building of a local high school. It is a good thing to have a place to gather, be it a home, school building, park bench or whatever. But I must admit that the high school's slogans can be an annoyance for persons whom do not worship the state as god.

Is it education, or indoctrination?

Here are some of the slogans that are found throughout the schoolyard. Note that these are not temporary or student posters, but permanent fixtures. Some of them are banners over 20 feet across spanning the gateways into and out of the 'school'. As you read these, see if you can figure out which parts of the 'Declaration of the Rights of Man' they sound like to you:

"It's all about attitude"

Personal
Responsibility
Is
Daily
Effort

"TVHS students are critical thinkers and problem solvers, clear communicators, effective collaborators and productive citizens."

>(This one is a huge banner over the main gate of the school) "Gateway to your future!"

There are more, but I will spare you. So, what do these slogans stand upon? Some may sound okay, but without an absolute reference for what is or is not moral standards, do they really have any meaning? This is such classic Egalite thinking that it should make Christians think twice about public schools. Humanistic morality is non-morality as well as God-hating. Thses slogans, which are only a few of the hundreds that litter the campus are for the purpose of indocrinating the young acolytes into the state religion, not for education. Be wary.


Saturday, August 23, 2003

 
At some point in the near future, I'll put some of my articles and such on here too. I write primarily two types of articles. One is Christian/theological stuff and the other is business stuff. I work for Transworld Systems (the company under the 'get paid' link) as a sales rep. It's direct sales, and so those articles are salesy stuff pertaining specifically to the work I do.

This is day one of this blog, and I've got a lot of setting up to do. I suspect that that process never stops though, if Toni's blog (Earth Shattering Distinctives) is any indication.


 
Forgive me, Father, for I have blogged.

This is Toni's (the purdiest girl in the whole multiverse) idea. Therefore, I will now be making a fool of myself on public cyberspace. However, I am a salesman by trade, so making a fool of myself is something that I am quite accustomed to.

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