Thursday, January 28, 2010

BJU, A University for U!

I ran across a Bob Jones University poster today, and had to share it with my friends in order to eliminate any talk that may be swirling around about the sexual innuendo in this poster.  I just don't see it. BJU is a beacon, and is above such ridicule! 

And now a message from our sponsors, Bob Jones University.

At BJU, we encourage you to come and go. At BJU, we expect you to Learn, Meet, Grow, Achieve, Impact, and then share your experience with the rest of the world. If you have any questions, feel free to call our toll free number, 1-800-BJ AND ME and speak to one of our receptionists.

Now that in no way should be misconstrued, and anyone who does is gutter minded. 

I wish you could see the fine print down at the bottom, which states that Bob Jones does not discriminate against race, color, age, sex, national origin, disability, or veteran status. That just goes to show that this university accepts all peoples and welcomes them with open arms,  unless you happen to be black, female, under the age of 18, and/or aren't from a nation that has white people in it. Notice that they didn't mention sexual orientation. Be forewarned, you will be discriminate against if you are gay, but you would expect that out of any upstanding Christian University. They do protect your veteran status though.  Now I hope that we can put all of this course talk to bed. 

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Protective Grill for a Snare Mic

I thought this was pretty funny.  This protective shield was deployed on the latest Rob Thomas tour. That should get it done!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Good job Pat! Now let's make it GREAT!!!

Dearest Patrick,

As always, thanks again for your insightful comments! It seems like these letter are becoming a common place, and it is great to see that we are able to scratch one another's backs with such ease. You really hammered God with this one, making him and his followers look mean spirited "I told you so's!" Home run on that one. Reminds me of Katrina. Although Ellen makes me laugh, the more people that think that God and Christians hate gays the better!

This is just a heads up. In the future, this is how I roll. If I am going to make a pact with someone, I do it with style. Range rovers, huge houses, fake boobs, and the like are typically part of the deal. I call it my platinum package. It doesn't take much convincing to get them to sign on that dotted line. People typically just want to get more and more, so I don't need the tyrannical French to make that happen. Truth is, I just cannot be associated with an 80% poverty rate. It's just bad for my street cred and hurts my bottom line. I am not saying that we need to discontinue this relationship. This is but a minor hiccup, and I am sure that you will be more cognizant of your misgivings in the future.

If you have any questions, feel free to hit up my cell, or you can visit the FAQ section of the website, and I do appreciate your subscription to access the premium content! Did you enjoy your "God Hates Chavez!" t-shirt and door mat? Those are still flying off the shelves.

Keep up the good work!



Sunday, January 3, 2010

Hoping and Knowing

For about the past six months, I have had to ask some more difficult questions of the Father in regards to faith; what it is, how it is alive, and how to live a life by faith. Growing up in more charismatic circles, I certainly saw people who viewed faith in some strange ways. Many thought that you got the good things in life because of your faith.  They also had a consequential aspect to living in faith. If there were things going wrong in life, then you simply didn't have enough faith, or possibly there was sin in your life that was keeping you from God's best. Today, we see that splattered all over the Christotainment industry. But there is merit to that line of thought.

The book of James really is a book about faith. James 4:2 says "You want something but don't get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have, because you do not ask God." Many faith movements have used this scripture to justify their belief system in getting that BMW or that house they can't afford, or even the clothes they wear or their circle of friends. That is pretty easy to do unless you read James 4:3, which says "When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures." So much of the intentions with the word of faith movement is derived on half of a thought in the book of James. 

James also says one piece of Scripture that doesn't sit well in my mind, being a person dead set against legalism in the Church. Earlier in the book, in chapter 2, he states, "What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, "Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed," but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead." 

When I was studying this book during the fall, I had a real come to Jesus moment as the Lord asked me where my faith was alive. I didn't have a good answer. Over the last couple of years, God has blessed us financially, and we had for the first time been able to live well on the money that I am fortunate to make at my job. Before that, it seemed we were living by faith every week. Julie once said, "You know, having faith is great, unless you have to use it." We were having to use it often, to say the least.

But during this time of provision from God, through an employer, I hadn't had to use my faith very often. That is until about 6 months go. 

My friend Chris is dealing with a rare form of cancer that is literally destroying his entire body. 

Chris needs a miracle to survive. He isn't yet 30, and is going through the battle of his lifetime. As I began to pray for he and his wife, I was praying the "God, you can do anything" prayer. James talks about that kind of faith as well. He goes on to say in verse 19 "You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder." The way that I see this, I believe that God can do anything. So what. So do the demons! I began to realize that there is a vast gap between believing that God can do something and knowing that He will. 

For those of you who are close to this family, you know that my wife has had some pretty serious health issues over the past three weeks. To make a long story short, she was rushed to the emergency room with severe lower abdominal pain. It was diagnosed as a kidney infection and after a CAT scan, they discovered a "mass in her abdomen that was about 6 cm wide." They instructed us to go to her OBGYN asap. We went the next day to see our friend Garrett who had delivered Salem and Josiah. After a sonogram, he pulled us into his office, and said that it was about 10 cm in width (about the size of a baby's head) and that he needed to find out what it was and why it was there. He mentioned that he would get an OR booked that day if she didn't have a kidney infection. That freaked this young dad out. All of the scenarios were running through my head. What if my wife had cancer? Is my faith alive enough to weather that storm? 

They took a blood test, and 4 days later, we found out that it probably wasn't cancer. Big sigh of relief! But Julie has another appointment tomorrow because there is still something there that shouldn't be. So, we will find out then what we are going to do next. 

James says that we have not because we ask not, but if we ask and do not get what we want, it is because of the wrong motive. This also denotes a fundamental understanding of asking for the things in a way that you know the Father will provide. So, being a person of little faith, I am left with the challenging question. Do I believe that my Father will heal my friend Chris? Do I believe that He will protect my wife and family from harm? I think that there are far too few of people in this world that could answer that question as a yes with certainty if it related to their circumstance. I am somewhere in the middle. I have begun the journey from a hope in God to a knowing of God. I pray that that journey will increase the faith that I need to truly impact the people that I love and be about God's choice for me. I am in progress, and am consistently thankful that despite my unbelief and lack of faith, that God is still good and still in charge. 
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