30 January 2012

The Dangers of YA Novels (It's Not the Vampire That Will Hurt You)

I found this review/commentary on YA novels and was drawn to it because it makes so much sense.

I'd love to have some feedback from some other parents as to your thoughts on this.

27 January 2012

Marriage and the Gospel- A Poetic Look

This young man posted a video that went viral a while back; now he's posted this one, which gets toward the heart of marriage as a picture of the gospel.  He's getting better every time.

22 January 2012

He Died of a Broken Heart

So much sadness today with the passing of one of the men I respected most over many years, Joe Paterno.  There's a lot of anger on my part at how he was so poorly treated that I'd had really better be careful what I write.

I'll try to be more retrospective later; right now, I'm hoping every trustee who voted to fire him is unemployed by the end of the year.

There's a lot of talk already about legacy.  I don't think the recent events will tarnish his legacy among anyone who has an ounce of fairness or decency in them.  I do hope the one legacy that comes out of this is that John Surma, the trustee who was so happy to go on camera and announce the firing of Paterno, carries that video clip with him for the rest of his life.  (Like I said, still a lot of anger.)

We'll miss you, JoPa.

12 January 2012

All Authority Really Means 'All'

An interesting set of quotes from Michael Horton's, The Gospel Commission-

“Not even the new birth is the result of human decision or effort. We are not given steps for ‘How to Be Born Again’. Jesus’s statement in John 3, that one must be born from above in order to enter the kingdom of heaven, is not an imperative (i.e., command) but an indicative (i.e., statement of fact). That is, it simply declares the state of affairs…The gospel is for us, not about us.  It isn’t about anything that we do, feel, or choose. It is the Good News about Jesus Christ and what he has accomplished for us. Of course, the new birth evidences itself in conversion: a lifelong response of repentance and faith.” (p. 30)

“We often speak of ‘making Jesus our personal Lord and Savior’, but this obscures two important points. First, we do not make Jesus anything, especially Lord and Savior. It is because he already is Lord and Savior that we are freed from the fear of death and hell.  All authority belongs to him already.” (p. 32)

 “The early Christians were not fed to wild beasts or dipped in wax and set ablaze as lamps in Nero’s garden because they thought Jesus was a helpful life coach or role model  but because they witnessed to him as the only Lord and Savior of the world. Jesus Christ doesn’t just live in the private hearts of individuals as the source of an inner peace. He is the Creator, Ruler, Redeemer, and Judge of all the earth.” (p. 33)
 What part of, 'all authority' do we not get?

Tim Tebow's Fire

This one is just for fun!

11 January 2012

How To Be A Team Player

Here is Lance Berkman accepting the Sports Personality of the Year award from the Missouri Athletic Club. 

Lance Berkman

He explains the how and the why of his success as a team player.  This is an outstanding few moments for anyone to watch.  I highly recommend it!  He tells some stories to make his points, and they are a lot of fun to hear.

I found this on Pete Scribner's Sola Gratia blog (recommended!) and that's where the link takes you.  You can also pull it up in YouTube if you prefer.  Thanks for posting this, Pete!

06 January 2012

'The Mature Worshiper is Easily Edified'

"The mature worshiper is easily edified." When hearing lackluster (even if biblical) preaching, immature worshipers will typically not listen to the message because they wish the messenger was more exciting. Conversely, mature worshipers eagerly receive the truth as it is proclaimed, even if it sounds like the preacher is reading a phone book.

- Steve Burchette

04 January 2012

2011 Buzzwords

Here are Time's top ten (or eleven) buzzwords from 2011.  As Challies suggests, that's a good reason to stop using them.  The list is a bit underwhelming as it is.

1. Occupy
2. Winning/Winner
3. Planking
4. Carmageddon
5. SuperPAC
6. Cone of Uncertainty/Haboob (weather words...a tie)
7. Arab Spring
8. Man- as a prefix
9. Hacktivist
10. Leading from behind

If Ephesians 5:12 Had Never Been Written

Watching the flurry of posts recently on Driscoll's new book on marriage, I rather enjoyed this quote by Carl Trueman on the Ref21 blog-

I have often in the past stood with those who laughed at what we regarded as the ignorant, unsophisticated taboos of the older generation. But now I worry about the ease with which the rising generation talks explicitly of 'the fruitless deeds of darkness' in the name of cultural engagement, fear of being thought passé or simply a desire to slough off the legalisms of their fathers in the faith. You can, after all, get to heaven without ever having seen an R-Rated art house movie or having enjoyed a spectacular love life.

Here's a question: would it make any difference to you, any difference at all to the way you talk, to what you watch, to the wayyou 'engage culture', if Eph. 5:12 had never been written?

Would it?

03 January 2012

Retractable Roof?

Based on my previous post today, I had to pass this one along, as it is going around the interweb.  This is the proposed retractable roof for Cowboys stadium, according to Cowboys fans-

If'n God's Name Was 'Jerry'

Living in Texas, one can be overwhelmed by the amount of football in the culture.  It's certainly not all bad, and I enjoy a great deal of it, especially the nicer side of 'Friday Night Lights' (the high-school football world) and college football.

 Will Boren (my son), Canyon HS 2011 WR/FS

The whole high school football culture here (yes, it is a culture:  when I was in high school, the coaches said, 'There's only two sports in Texas...football and spring football') is fun.  Small towns of a thousand people have stadiums that seat three thousand, they they are full every Friday night.  The backroads, sometimes thirty or forty miles between towns, are bumper-to-bumper at 5pm and again at 10pm on Fridays.  It's a sight to see.  (Yes, there are some bad aspects, but for the most part, sanity reigns and it is a lot of fun.)  The Class 4A state championship game was played in front of over 43,000 fans!

Southlake Carroll Dragons- Class 5A State Champs

College football in Texas can also be fun.  Texas is different than many other states, as there are more Division I programs here than most states can boast.  Some of the best are less than a hundred miles apart (shoutin' distance in Texas), much like the 'golden triangle' of basketball near Raleigh, NC.  The most recent brouhaha with Texas A&M leaving the Big 12 for the SEC has certainly upset some of this, and mostly for the negative for Texans, but that's another story.

Pro football, on the other hand, isn't quite so much fun.  The Houston Texans have finally made the playoffs, which is great, but they'll go in without some key players and likely won't last long.  In any case, the Texans will always play second fiddle to the team in Dallas.

As Matt Chandler once put it, the largest pagan temple in America sits in Dallas.  Every other Sunday, a hundred thousand people show up to worship there.  People that would be loathe to put $20 in the plate at their 'other' church will throw down six- or eight-hundred bucks at their worship service at Cowboys' Stadium.  Those who would complain about sitting through a 15- minute sermonette will sit for four-plus hours absorbing the sex and violence before them at the pagan temple.  If you've ever been to Jerry's house, you know that the scantily-clad Cowboys' cheerleaders on the largest TV screen in the world does indeed qualify as, 'sex'.  I'd tell you what my 12-year-old daughter said about it, but this is a family venue, and I'd be embarrassed to print it.

All that's to say, I've gotten a pretty big kick out of the angry rhetoric coming out of Cowboys' fans the past few days.  The 'Pokes lost to the Giants and will miss the playoffs.  People are angry at Jerry, the god they seem to worship (follow the money!), for not stepping back and letting a GM run the team.  Everything he touches seems to turn to gold, albeit with a bit of an amoral slant.  His team just gets worse.  (They still make him a fortune, though.) If Jerry Jones is really interested in fixing the Cowboys' woes, he needs to treat himself just like he treated Tom Landry back in 1989 (he fired him unceremoniously).

The irony is, these folks will still plunk down their kids' college-money to watch Jerry's team (and line Jerry's pockets) Sunday after Sunday.  The level of commitment is staggering.  Just imagine if Jerry actually did something good for them.  It makes me wonder why we don't see the same level of commitment from those who claim to worship Yahweh, who has indeed done good for us.  In fact, many who worship Jerry every Sunday are some of the same folks who claim to worship Yahweh, but if you look at where they attend fellowship on Sundays, and where they spend their money, it's hard to accept the claims.

I've stepped on enough Texas toes for now.  We'll see how the off-season goes. 

At least with the God I worship, He'll never need to fire himself to make things better.