Monday, August 30, 2010

"Almost" Christian

I was first introduced to the writing of Kendra Creasy Dean when I attended YMI (Youth Ministry Institute) in the Tennessee Conference of the UMC. Her book "The Godbearing Life: The Art of Soul Tending for Youth Ministry" is one I have turned to time and again (as evidenced by the wear and tear and highlighting in the book). I've placed an order for her newest book "Almost Christian"...CNN has a report here about the disturbing trends of the religious views of teens.

Deacon Greg Kandra calls it "Teenage Mutant Ninja Christianity"...It's not as good as it sounds...

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Why people don't come to church...

This was written for a specific church...even though they didn't have MY church in mind...they did a wonderful job of describing it...

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Saturday Silliness!

In an effort to get their point across..."Have it Your Way!", Burger King has created the following site:The Subservient Chicken

Ask what you will, the chicken will do it (within reason now!!!)...some of them include:
* Michael Jackson dance moves, such as "moonwalk"
* Throw Pillow
* Riverdance
* The "elephant"
* Tango
* Show teeth
* Be an airplane
* Shake your booty
* Irish dance
* The Robot
* Lay egg
* Walk Like an Egyptian
* Yoga
* Sleep
* Rage
* Raise the roof
* Dog
* Fall
* Squat
* Peck Ground
* Fight
* Read a book from his bookcase.
* Have a drink of water
* Blow your nose
* Barrel roll
* Begone
* Jump rope
* Hide behind sofa
* Golf Swing
* Try to do a headstand
* Hide
* Leave
* Sit
* Watch TV
* Spin
* Do the YMCA
* Fly
* Handstand
* Hula hoop
* Cartwheel
* Push-up
* Electric Slide
* Air Guitar
* Backflip
* Turn off the lights
* Sing
* Die
* Do the splits
* headbang
* Pray
* Shakespeare
* Headbutt
* Swim
* Kick an imaginary soccer ball.
* Jump
* Act like a dog
* Hug
* Tai Chi
* Hula
* Ballet
* Breakdance
* Make a sandwich

You have to admit...someone really used their imagination this time!

Friday, August 27, 2010

in God's image...

I am reading a book by Dick Staub named "About You"...In it he explains that despite what some scientists would have us believe about humans and our "accidental" creation, we are in fact created by God, in His image...just like the Bible tells us.

"The discovery and mapping of DNA has revealed a complexity that many say dismisses random chance as a plausible explanation for DNA. They argue that it is statistically and mathematically impossible. What are the odds that a free-living, single-celled organism, such as a bacterium, might result by the chance combining of pre-existent building blocks? Atheistic physicist Harold Morowitz calculated the odds as one chance in 10 to the one hundred billionth power. Sir Fred Hoyle calculated the odds of just the proteins of an amoeba arising by chance as one in 10 to the forty thousandth power...The odds led Fred Hoyle to state that the probability of spontaneous generation 'is about the same as the probability that a tornado sweeping through a junkyard could assemble a Boeing 747 from the contents therein.' Mathematicians tell us that any event with an improbability greater than one chance in 10 to the fiftieth power is in the realm of metaphysics--i.e. a miracle."

"Even if you don't believe in God or are irreligious, what the Bible teaches is true: God's imprint on your life never leaves you. There are those who have ceased to believe in God, yet are haunted by the realization that though they wander far from God, God's image goes with them. Even the atheist bears God's image. God's imprint is on your life even when it is no longer outwardly evident. In the New Testament story of the prodigal son a young man squanders his potential and hits bottom, bereft of the beauty and promise he once possessed. Yet the point of the story is that the father still sees and appreciates the worth of his wayward son."

Do you ever really stop to consider what it means to be created "of God" or "in His image". Do you live your life in such a way that God would be or is pleased? If you truly took time to consider the implications and believe...what would you change about yourself in light of these statements?

Thursday, August 26, 2010


There, but for the grace of God, go I.
J. Bradford

Happy Birthday!

A reporter went to India to interview Mother Teresa among the sick and suffering poor. Mother told the reporter that she did not do interviews but invited her to join in the day's work. The reporter witnessed Mother Teresa and her sisters care for people so sick, deformed and debilitated that they barely seemed human at all. And they did this all day long.

At the end of the day, the reporter just had to ask Mother Teresa how she could continue day after exhausting visit, feed, touch, wipe brows and give comfort to these the wretched poor as they lay dying. Mother softly said, "It is not hard...because in each person I see the face of Christ in one of His more distressing disguises."

Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta would have been 100 today.

Words to live by...

Some words of wisdom! Would love to give props to the author but I'm afraid I don't know who they are...

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Great new site!

I can always count on Gavin to be on the cutting edge of all things technical...he's associated with a new website that looks to be something I'll check in on time and again...check out Sticky Sheep!

Especially the article about footwashing...everyone's favorite subject!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010


While I have not been blessed with a voice that will inspire others, it's not so bad that it starts the dogs to howling and makes small children cover their ears. The one thing I do have is a passionate love of music. Whether it be secular, Christian or hymns, songs can lift my spirit to the heavens.

I was many years a member of the United Methodist Church before realizing that John Wesley (himself!) had left us "Rules" for the singing of hymns...

John Wesley’s Rules for Singing (1761)

1. Sing all. See that you join with the congregation as frequently as you can. Let not a slight degree of weakness or weariness hinder you. If it is a cross to you, take it up and you will find a blessing.

2. Sing lustily, and with a good courage. Beware of singing as if you were half dead, or half asleep; but lift up your voice with strength. Be no more afraid of your voice now, nor more ashamed of it being heard, then when you sing the songs of Satan.

3. Sing modestly. Do not bawl, as to be heard above, or distinct from, the rest of the congregation, that you may not destroy the harmony; but strive to unite your voices together, so as to make one clear melodious sound.

4. Sing in time. Whatever time is sung, be sure to keep with it. Do not run before, not stay behind it; but attend closely to the leading voices, and move therewith as exactly as you can. And take care you sing not too slow. This drawling way naturally steals on all who are lazy; and it is high time to drive it out from among us, and sing all our tunes just as quick as we did at first.

5. Above all, sing spiritually. Have an eye to God in every word you sing. Aim at pleasing Him more than yourself, or any other creature. In order to do this, attend strictly to the sense of what you sing, and see that your heart is not carried away with the sound, but offered to God continually; so shall your singing be such as the Lord will approve of here, and reward when he cometh in the clouds of heaven.

While 1761 was a long time ago, his rules speak to us, even today! Next time you have your hands on a United Methodist Hymnal, check out the first page or two...

Monday, August 23, 2010


"He has achieved success who has lived well, laughed often and loved much; who has gained the respect of intelligent men and the love of little children; who has filled his niche and accomplished his task; who has left the world better than he found it, whether by an improved poppy, a perfect poem, or a rescued soul; who has never lacked appreciation of earth's beauty or failed to express it; who has always looked for the best in others and given them the best he had; whose life was an inspiration; whose memory a benediction." Bessie Stanley

Saturday, August 21, 2010

I never knew...

Instructions for making a "cross" symbol using your keyboard:

What they don't say is that you need to set your font size to about 54...otherwise it comes out really, really little!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Recognizing Jesus

Just felt the need to re-post this...originally from November of 2008...

Luke 2:25-32
25Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. 26It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord's Christ. 27Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required, 28Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying:
29"Sovereign Lord, as you have promised,
you now dismiss[d] your servant in peace.
30For my eyes have seen your salvation,
31which you have prepared in the sight of all people,
32a light for revelation to the Gentiles
and for glory to your people Israel."

If Jesus walked in at dinner time, sat down in an empty chair and started eating spaghetti and meatballs with your family, would you recognize Him? How about if He showed up at your next basketball or soccer game? Or what if He came through the drive through at McDonald's while you were working at the window? He might be tough to recognize, especially if He were wearing modern clothes.

Simeon recognized Jesus in the temple even though Jesus was a baby. He had been praying so long to see Him that he recognized him immediately. He'd been waiting for this moment his whole life and he knew what was expected of him.

If we quietly pay attention to God each and every day, we won't be surprised whenever or wherever He shows up---even if it's a drive through window.


As has been the case so many times...Asbo Jesus can say so much with his drawings...

How does one decide what is so important that you must put God on hold?

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

What kind of first name do you have?


You Have an Inspired First Name

You are a highly original and naturally creative person. You are always thinking outside the box.

You are have adventurous spirit, and you are extremely energetic. If you love something, it's easy for you to stay motivated.

You have your own unique take on the world. Your views are both independent and progressive.

You aren't shy about living a bold and interesting life. You are a bit stubborn and headstrong when it comes to what you believe in.

Whatever! They may have a little right but...Moi? bold? stubborn? headstrong? Surely not!

Friday, August 13, 2010


I saw this on The Anchoress Online this morning...using her words...""A moving video for anyone who has had a good father." Perhaps an even more moving video for those whose fathers were broken, or deeply flawed or not there at all. When a child steps out and tries something risky and then falls, the mother is quick to run to him, console him and hug him close; she frets for him. The father is the one who says "I'm here if you fall, only do not be afraid." The child needs both."

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Cookies, Coke and God

I've read this story on more than one occasion and it's always just what I need to hear.

Cookies, coke, and God

There once was a little boy who wanted to meet God. He knew it was a long trip to where God lived, so he packed his suitcase with chocolate cookies and some cans of coke, and he started his journey.

When he had travelled about a quarter of a mile, he met an old man. He was sitting in the park just staring at some pigeons. The boy sat down next to him and opened his suitcase. He was about to take a drink from a coke when he noticed that the old man looked hungry so he offered him a cookie.

He gratefully accepted it and smiled at him. His smile was so incredible that the boy wanted to see it again, so he offered him a coke. Once again, the old man smiled at him.

The boy was delighted! They sat there all afternoon eating and smiling, but they never said a word. As it grew dark, the boy realised how tired he was and he got up to leave, but before he had gone more than a few steps, he turned around, ran back to the old man, and gave him a hug. The old man gave him his biggest smile ever.

When the boy opened the door to his own house a short time later, his mother was surprised by the look of joy on his face. She asked him “What did you do today that made you so happy?” He replied, “I had lunch with God.” But before his mother could respond, he added, “You know what? He’s got the most beautiful smile I’ve ever seen!”

Meanwhile, the old man, also radiant with joy, returned to his home. His son was stunned by the look of peace on his face and he asked,” Father, what did you do today that made you so happy?” He replied, “I ate cookies in the park with God.” But before his son responded, he added, “You know, he’s much younger than I expected.”

Don't you just love the way the old man, the boy and God can all communicate without saying a word? The heart can speak so well, if we but give it the silence it needs to be heard.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Water Bird!

While this looks like it could be lots of fun...I can imagine I would last about 30 seconds on it!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

How cool is this?

On Saturday, April 24th, over 30 members of the Opera Company of Philadelphia Chorus and principal cast members from the upcoming production of La traviata converged on the Reading Terminal Market Italian Festival. Wearing street clothes and blending in with the crowd, the artists swung into action when the first orchestral strains of the famed "Brindisi" were piped through the market, giving a rousing, surprise performance for hundreds of delighted onlookers who were there to enjoy the Italian delicacies and the everyday treats that the Reading Terminal Market has to offer. The four-minute piece drew an overwhelming crowd, and won a thunderous ovation that included both laughter and tears from the audience.

The Opera Company sincerely thanks the Chorus and Cast members who generously donated their time and talents to make this special event possible.

Why doesn't this happen when I'm at the mall?

Sunday, August 1, 2010


This is a recording by the Benedictine Nuns of Notre-Dame de l'Annonciation. Beautiful music from behind closed doors...

"The Nuns are part of an ancient order which dates back to the 6th Century. They continue the tradition of leading a hidden life, literally behind closed doors. To remain 'secluded' to the outside world, any visitors, even family, must communicate with the sisters through a grill. Once vows have been taken to live in the Convent, the sisters remain there until their death."