A lot of us have “been diagnosed” with specific personality or mental conditions. I don’t formally have such a diagnosis (I’ve not yet seen anyone qualified to do it for me); but I’m sure there are several people around who’d be glad to offer suggestions!
The thing I worry about is the effects I have seen such diagnoses have on people – the self-defining, self-shaping label it provides.
It does affect one’s self-perception, expectations of what they can probably do, or not do, and how they are likely to behave. It really does, in my experience. So it narrows a person’s view of themselves and their world – and thus clearly restricts their potential. Continue reading
In pretty much his last words to the American people, Abraham Lincoln began the wrap-up of his Second Inaugural Address with these famous, beautiful ideals:
With malice toward none, with charity for all . . .
And I think he really meant it. In a nation that was an ocean of anger and blaming and malice, he asked us to move forward without malice.
“Malice: Intention to harm or deprive in an illegal or immoral way. Desire to take pleasure in another’s misfortune.” [Wiktionary]
Some American Christians worry that we are being “persecuted” and that our “freedom of religion” is being infringed. That’s always true to some extent – and the idea is scary.
How did Jesus deal with it?
Jesus practiced non-violent non-cooperation toward evil persons. The results of his courage were both short-term and long-term, mostly good, some brutally bad.
Jesus’ immediate followers – the Christians of the first century, also faced lots of suffering.
- They suffered government harassment, even arrest and execution.
- They suffered from neighbors and fellow-citizens – the insulting or aggressive behavior of others around them in society.
- They suffered all the normal pains and sorrows of human life, of which there are many. Continue reading
With lots going on in our culture – and in our politics -
that begs for discussion
among those interested in being Christ-followers,
and among those concerned to understand what the Bible actually teaches
on these various matters of current concern,
it seems time to revive this blog.
And there have even been requests to that effect!
This post is to let you know we’re firing it up. You may subscribe to receive notifications of new posts here, which may amount to two or three a week. The subscribe / unsubscribe buttons are in the right column under the heading “Subscribe2″.
I think the (verbal) behavior of Rush Limbaugh is a moral issue, and has a strong negative impact on the quality of citizenship in society. So, that needs to be said. This is my letter to the editor published in May 2006 in a small-town Nebraska newspaper.
Some of my best friends are Limbaugh addicts (“dittoheads”). You don’t always agree with all your friends, right? I personally am sad to hear Rush is coming back to McCook airwaves. I fear he will undermine habits of good citizenship, and will damage families and spiritual lives.
Unfortunately, he behaves like what Isaiah calls a “scoundrel.” Continue reading
Here’s my ex-temp ramble in response to the line “momentum succumbs to entropy” seen elsewhere . . .
+ and you can say entropy succumbs to momentum.
- but you have to have an energy source for momentum.
+ well, the plants and animals find energy to bloom and bear seeds and run and climb; so can we
- but they all die
+ and more come
- but the energy-supply machine (the sun) is running down
Frankie Schaeffer grew up in a modern, politically radical, Americanized “Christianity”. He is not pleased with what it teaches or how it operates. In a recent article he gives a fairly thorough explanation of his concerns and how they relate to current political personalities – e.g. Michelle Bachmann.
I have to agree with much of what Schaeffer says. Here’s an example:
America has a problem: It’s filled with people who take the Bible seriously.
America has a blessing: It’s filled with people who take the Bible seriously.
[You can sign this covenant online at the Sojourners site. I have added underlines and bolds to the version below.]
How good and pleasant it is when the people of God live together in unity. -Psalm 133:1
As Christian pastors and leaders with diverse theological and political beliefs, we have come together to make this covenant with each other, and to commend it to the church, faith-based organizations, and individuals, so that together we can contribute to a more civil national discourse. The church in the United States can offer a message of hope and reconciliation to a nation that is deeply divided by political and cultural differences. Too often, however, we have reflected the political divisions of our culture rather than the unity we have in the body of Christ. We come together to urge those who claim the name of Christ to “put away from you all bitterness and wrath and anger and wrangling and slander, together with all malice, and be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you” (Ephesians 4:31-32).
there is no way in which a country can satisfy the craving for absolute security
“No way.” No way. As in not possible in this world.
but it can easily bankrupt itself,
morally and economically,
in attempting to reach that illusory goal through arms alone.
- President (& General) Dwight D. Eisenhower
In other words, you can’t buy enough guns (etc) to make yourself safe. But you can go completely nuts trying.
How many times this winter did you witness something like this: you’re watching the snow fall straight east instead of to the ground and someone says, “Wow, that’s a hot batch of global warming isn’t it?” The intention is to mock the idea that the global climate system is actually warming up – because look how COLD it is right now!
But think a minute. If there has been heat added to the incredibly complex global weather system, what should we expect? Certainly not more uniformly balmy sunny days. Add heat into a complex and volatile system like earth’s weather system and you will get MORE volatility and unpredictability. Continue reading