Why start off 2008 with a laundry list of resolutions that I know I won’t keep? No, no, better to make anti-resolutions, things that I know, absolutely without a doubt, I will never, ever do this year…
1) Serve on another committee. I wasn’t just any committee member. I was a bona fide read-all-the-emails, attend-all-the-meetings, believed-I-could-actually-make-a-difference kind of committee member. I was determined to overcome my natural cynicism and play well with others. Ha! What was I thinking? Eyegal kept telling me: “Careful, Mike, you’re gonna get burned.”
I hate it the way she’s right all the time. Bureaucracies, whether they be at work or church (and sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference), suck.… Read the rest
Some in my beloved Church of Christ tradition will ask this question: Yeah, but can you understand what they’re saying?
Answer: No, not really (save for a phrase or two now and then). But it doesn’t really matter. You see, there is more to God than print on a page, and there are some things that bypass the left brain and head straight to the soul.
On the heels of the freewheeling discussion emanating from my recent post “McChurch?” comes this succinct critique of “Consumer Christianity” from the ubiquitous and uber reasonable Church of Christ prophet, Edward Fudge.
Talk about jumping on the bandwagon. I swear, sometimes I think that man sits around reading my blog.
One of my favorite parts about visiting my Mom in Virginia is exploring the museum that is her house and searching among the archives and exhibits for long lost treasures.
Among the items that I’ve found (and rescued) in the past:
My collection of Matchbox and Hot Wheels cars (unfortunately, I couldn’t locate the Hot Wheels Supercharger Sprint Set)
My baseball and sports card collection (and it is a very good one if I have to say so myself)
My scrapbooks from elementary, junior high and high school which contain old class pictures and portraits, 4-H and church camp ribbons, newspaper clippings containing my super-amazing, jaw-dropping feats on the tennis courts and cross country trails (heh), my acceptance letter to Duke University and goofy letters from an old high school girlfriend which still hold the slightest hint of perfume.
And I don’t believe that he would say that, because that’s not the official teaching of the Catholic Church (although there are many Catholics still today who might say that). What he did say is that those “ecclesial communities” formed by those other Christians are not churches in the “proper sense” because they do not have apostolic succession and are therefore “defective.” That has always been the view of the Catholic Church and the Pope is, for whatever reasons, basically stating what has always been official teaching.… Read the rest
There are certain immutable laws of the universe which govern the course of the day. The sun rises in the east and sits in the west. Politicians will talk a good game, and when push comes to shove, fail to follow through (or use their fists instead). And whenever I absolutely have to be somewhere in a hurry, I will inevitably end up behind an octogenarian in an Olds. Or in this case, a memaw in a Marquis.
There were no cars behind me or coming toward me, and it would have been a simple matter to have downshifted, crossed the double yellow, and blown granny’s doors off on my way to church.… Read the rest
“Well that’s it, boys. I’ve been redeemed. The preacher’s done warshed away all my sins and transgressions. It’s the straight and narrow from here on out, and heaven everlasting’s my reward…Neither God nor man’s got nothin’ on me now. C’mon in boys, the water is fine.”
–Delmar O’Donnell in O Brother Where Art Thou
The phone rang in the middle of the night, shattering my blissful slumber like a Louisville Slugger against a plate-glass window.
Yesterday was Senior Sunday at our church. That’s “senior” as in high school, not the over-the-hill, AARP type. There were 26 seniors this year, which, as we say in the South, is a whole big mess of ’em.
They marched down the center aisle of the church, clad in their graduations robes–brown, burgundy, white, red, purple, power blue. This was the start of a new tradition this year. But just barely. It was announced last week that they would wear their robes, and as one might expect, there was a great hue and cry and a week’s worth of high drama.… Read the rest
From the oldest of times, people danced for a number of reasons. They danced in prayer or so their crops would be plentiful… They danced to stay physically fit and to show their community spirit. And they danced to celebrate, and that is the dancing we are talking about. Aren’t we told in Psalms 149, ‘Praise ye the Lord, sing unto the Lord a new song, Let them praise his name in dance.’ It was king David that we read about in Samuel, and what did he do? He ‘danced before the Lord with all of his might, leaping and dancing’… Ecclesiastes assures us that ‘there is a time for every purpose under heaven.’
Another crowd of souls is led in their wantonness to abandon themselves to clumsy motions, to dance and sing, and form rings of dancers. Finally, raising their haunches and hips, they float along with a tremulous motion of the loins.
Social dance–a major category or classification of danceforms or dance styles, where sociability and socializing are the primary focuses of the dancing.
Since the early days of the church, Christians, such as Arnobius, have struggled to make peace with the reality that they must live their lives in material bodies, complete with urges, instincts and natural cycles and rhythms.… Read the rest