Tuesday, March 30, 2004

The Three Minute Mile Man

I re-realized today for the bazillionth time that I often (read: always) set standards that I can't quite (read: at all) reach. I want to do so much and I want to do more than I want - which really means that I not only get frustrated by the lack of what I accomplish or achieve but I can actually beat myself up for stuff I haven't even thought about yet; that I'm somehow (read: the devil) convinced I should be doing.

I want to pray, eat, sleep, workout, makeout (read: Kim is hot!), order takeout, and chillout 25 hours of each 24 hour day. I am a self-improvement junkie and can never get enough of the constant "high" (read: "low") of tyring to become, do, and experience more. I could have 5% body fat (my body fat at 3 weeks (read: 3 weeks of conception)) and I'd want to get to 2.8. I could blog every day and I'd want to start a second blog day for select Tuesdays or some idiotic idea like that. I could pray an hour and still feel like the universe might possibly come to a screeching halt if I don't stop and hit my knees for the injured bird that is hopping outside my window (read: really lame hypothetical example).

I make a law producing, guilt providing Pharisee look like a substitute teacher who is nicknamed "Pushover" by his middle school students.

Does this make sense?

Jesus offers me an easy yoke and I consistency decline it for the one made of the concrete of my unrealistic expectations.

I'd like to write more (read: really I would) but I have to go for a run. I haven't ran in a while (read: sophomore year of college) so I better not try and over do it. What do you think? A 4 minute mile sound attainable? Yeah, that's what I thought too. 3 minutes it is!

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Arachnoid Arrogance

I saw a spider this morning in my kitchen. I decided I didn't want it in my kitchen. In fact I didn't want it alive. I grabbed a napkin and crushed it between my forefinger and thumb. I destroyed it's existence in an instant.

As I was chucking the napkin and the raw remains of the spider into the trash I thought, "man, I would never want to be a spider!" I began to ponder the spider's story. Maybe he was hunting for a place to spin a web in order to catch food for his family? (I know - too much time on my hands) Was he on his way home from "work" and a few feet from his family under the refrigerator? (I shouldn't have said that - now Kim's going to have me cleaning under the fridge) Surely he didn't wake up that morning expecting to die?

{Okay, now this is weird, spooky weird. As I am writing this my cell phone just rang. It was Kim and she told me that one of my favorite professors, Dr. Trevathan, had a heart attack in church two days ago and is in critical condition}

Was that not, is that not the point of this blog?

We don't know when or how it is going to end for us. The brutal fact is that God can look down on the floor of earth and see us crawling along, spinning our webs, and in an instant end our life.

We foolishly think that we are going to get tomorrow and the truth of the matter is that we might not get 10 more minutes.

"God, thank you for the 35 years, 169 days, 9 hours, and 30 minutes you have graciously given me so far. Please be with Dr. Trevathan. Through, Jesus I come asking, Amen"

Thursday, March 11, 2004

Headlines Say Glass Empty - John 14 Says Glass Full

Here was the roller coaster that was my morning:

Step one- read the headlines on Foxnews.com. Here's a sample:

American Arrested as Iraqi Spy

Translators Killed in Basra Ambush

Bush to Visit New Sept. 11 Memorial

Human Remains May Be in Meat
Canadians worried killer's victims might have ended up in pork products

Salt, Butter, Toxic Chemicals?
EPA examining health hazards of microwaved popcorn

Teaming Up on Spam

Kerry: GOP Is 'Crooked'
Says his Republican critics are 'lying'; Bush aide demands apology

R. Kelly Photos Tossed OutJ

Bertuzzi Out for Breaking Neck
NHL suspends Canucks forward; player tearfully apologized last night

Kobe Ruling Appealed
DA says accuser will suffer irreparable harm if made to testify about sex history

And a host of other headlines including the Martha Stewart mess (lying), Megan's law (Rape of children), immigration problems, Terrorism, and Anti-Semitic graffiti in Denver.

"Good Morning!" After reading those headlines I just wanted to shlep back into bed and say, "Good night!"

Step Two: Read my Bible.

But then my mind hearkened back to Brad Gautney's message he spoke last night at Highland. Brad and his wife, Monica, and their two beautiful children, Hope and Emma, are missionaries in Haiti. Brad reminded us that John 14 says "Do not let your hearts be troubled."

"Do not let your hearts be troubled?"

Jesus must not have read the same headlines I read this morning.

How "disciple-like" is my thinking?

When the world is full of hurt Jesus says "let your hearts be full of hope." When every thing is falling apart around us Jesus (ever the carpenter) says "remember that I am building a place for you."

Glass Full.

Thursday, March 04, 2004

The Passion of the Liberals

Usually, I don't get super polictical in my blog, however a good friend of mine, Bill Stevens, sent me this article that I thought was worth sharing with the entire free world (read: a handful of devoted friends).

The passion of the liberal
Ann Coulter (archive)

March 4, 2004 | Print | Send

In the dozens and dozens of panic-stricken articles the New York Times has run on Mel Gibson's movie, "The Passion of the Christ," the unavoidable conclusion is that liberals haven't the vaguest idea what Christianity is. The Times may have loopy ideas about a lot of things, but at least when they write about gay bathhouses and abortion clinics, you get the sense they know what they're talking about.

But Christianity just doesn't ring a bell. The religion that has transformed Western civilization for two millennia is a blank slate for liberals. Their closest reference point is "conservative Christians," meaning people you're not supposed to hire. And these are the people who carp about George Bush's alleged lack of "intellectual curiosity."

The most amazing complaint, championed by the Times and repeated by all the know-nothing secularists on television, is that Gibson insisted on "rubbing our faces in the grisly reality of Jesus' death." The Times was irked that Gibson "relentlessly focused on the savagery of Jesus' final hours" – at the expense of showing us the Happy Jesus. Yes, Gibson's movie is crying out for a car chase, a sex scene or maybe a wise-cracking orangutan.

The Times ought to send one of its crack investigative reporters to St. Patrick's Cathedral at 3 p.m. on Good Friday before leaping to the conclusion that "The Passion" is Gibson's idiosyncratic take on Christianity. In a standard ritual, Christians routinely eat the flesh and drink the blood of Jesus Christ, aka "the Lamb of God." The really serious Catholics do that blood- and flesh-eating thing every day, the sickos. The Times has just discovered the tip of a 2,000-year-old iceberg.

But the loony-left is testy with Gibson for spending so much time on Jesus' suffering and death while giving "short shrift to Jesus' ministry and ideas" – as another Times reviewer put it. According to liberals, the message of Jesus, which somehow Gibson missed, is something along the lines of "be nice to people" (which to them means "raise taxes on the productive").

You don't need a religion like Christianity, which is a rather large and complex endeavor, in order to flag that message. All you need is a moron driving around in a Volvo with a bumper sticker that says "be nice to people." Being nice to people is, in fact, one of the incidental tenets of Christianity (as opposed to other religions whose tenets are more along the lines of "kill everyone who doesn't smell bad and doesn't answer to the name Mohammed"). But to call it the "message" of Jesus requires ... well, the brain of Maureen Dowd.

In fact, Jesus' distinctive message was: People are sinful and need to be redeemed, and this is your lucky day because I'm here to redeem you even though you don't deserve it, and I have to get the crap kicked out of me to do it. That is the reason He is called "Christ the Redeemer" rather than "Christ the Moron Driving Around in a Volvo With a 'Be Nice to People' Bumper Sticker on It."

The other complaint from the know-nothing crowd is that "The Passion" will inspire anti-Semitic violence. If nothing else comes out of this movie, at least we finally have liberals on record opposing anti-Semitic violence. Perhaps they should broach that topic with their Muslim friends.

One Times review of "The Passion" said: "To be a Christian is to face the responsibility for one's own most treasured sacred texts being used to justify the deaths of innocents." At best, this is like blaming Jodie Foster for the shooting of Ronald Reagan. But the reviewer somberly warned that a Christian should "not take the risk that one's life or work might contribute to the continuation of a horror." So the only thing Christians can do is shut up about their religion. (And no more Jodie Foster movies!)

By contrast, in the weeks after 9-11, the Times was rushing to assure its readers that "prominent Islamic scholars and theologians in the West say unequivocally that nothing in Islam countenances the Sept. 11 actions." (That's if you set aside Muhammad's many specific instructions to kill non-believers whenever possible.) Times columnists repeatedly extolled "the great majority of peaceful Muslims." Only a religion with millions of practitioners trying to kill Americans and Jews is axiomatically described as "peaceful" by liberals.

As I understand it, the dangerous religion is the one whose messiah instructs: "[I]f one strikes thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also" and "Love your enemies ... do good to them that hate you, and pray for them that persecute and calumniate you." The peaceful religion instructs: "Slay the enemy where you find him." (Surah 9:92).

Imitating the ostrich-like posture of certain German Jews who ignored the growing danger during Hitler's rise to power, today's liberals are deliberately blind to the real threats of violence that surround us. Their narcissistic self-image requires absolute solicitude toward angry savages plotting acts of terrorism. The only people who scare them are the ones who worship a Jew.

Ann Coulter is host of AnnCoulter.org, a Townhall.com member group.