Tuesday, November 22, 2011
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
Wednesday, November 09, 2011
Thursday, November 03, 2011
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
Thornhurst, Pa- Few people read it, fewer still will remember it but in the waning days of last summer, a blog written by the unremarkable hack known to some as Scruffy Mynxbane and to at least two pitiable children as "dad," promised special revelation. Indeed, in a post on prophecy that has proven to be less than prophetic, the writer threatened to reveal "What God is Still Telling Us?" As if his temerity was not subject to the safety belts of common sense nor even the DOT approved cranial protection of a good crash helmet, he even went so far as to hint, some say, declare, that the message to the world at large and at present was this, "Not much." Since that time fractions of fearful followers have sat at their computers with bated breath awaiting the promised revelation.
Saturday, August 27, 2011
“Know for certain that for four hundred years your descendants will be strangers in a country not their own and that they will be enslaved and mistreated there. 14 But I will punish the nation they serve as slaves, and afterward they will come out with great possessions. 15 You, however, will go to your ancestors in peace and be buried at a good old age. 16 In the fourth generation your descendants will come back here, for the sin of the Amorites has not yet reached its full measure.”
- First, they tell us that it's pretty freakin' amazing that we have a recorded conversation that occurred five thousand years ago! That's not really my point, it just now hit me how wild that is. Sorry.
- This conversation is between God and man. God took some time out of His day to talk to his created child. Don't lose the awe of that! That right there should tell you something vital about His nature. He wants us to know some things. He doesn't want us kept in ignorance. He wants us to know Him and so He talks with us. And what does He say?
- "Know for certain..." See, don't wonder, KNOW. I'm gonna tell you.
- "...for four hundred years your descendants will be strangers in a country not their own and that they will be enslaved and mistreated there." He knows our plight. Not only that, but He's allowing it...for a while. For you see...
- "But I will punish the nation they serve as slaves," He's keeping records and nobody's getting away with anything. You are His and while it may not feel like He's protecting you, He doesn't take lightly anything done to you. Our best guess as to when the Exodus happened was right after Pepi II's reign. A guy named Merenre II, believed to be his son took power for only one year. Archeologists have no idea what happened to him (cause they're not looking on the bottom of the Red Sea) but they know that his reign began something called the First Intermediate Period. A one hundred and fifty year Dark Ages for Egypt that kicked off with famine, plague, looting, chaos, an end of international trade, art and building and civil war. Just the kind of thing you may think would happen after: the Nile turns to blood; having enough of blood, the frogs abandon the Nile for the people's homes; dust becomes gnats all over everyone's faces; God ups the ante and adds flies to the gnats (i'm picturing those freakin greenhead ones that bite you in the center of your back and even draw blood); a disease strikes the Egyptian livestock; boils cover the Egyptians; a hailstorm kills everyone outside; locusts finish off the Egyptian crops; God sends darkness upon the Egyptians, darkness that can be felt (i have no idea what that is but it sounds creepy); all the firstborn who are not protected by the blood of an unspotted, innocent lamb die in one night (remember what i was saying about God telling the same story over and over again?)
- "...afterward they will come out with great possessions." God compensates his. That generation, who had known nothing but slavery, oppression and poverty, in one day was free and rich beyond they're dreams.
- "You, however, will go to your ancestors in peace and be buried at a good old age." A lot of times, when God really digs you, He spares you from coming tragedy altogether. (Enosh, Noah, Abe, Lot, Elijah, Daniel, the Rapture)
- "In the fourth generation your descendants will come back here, for the sin of the Amorites has not yet reached its full measure." God's got a plan and a limit. He's merciful. He tolerated the Amorites nonsense for four hundred years until their sin just got so putrid He'd had enough and He wasn't going to let them pollute the rest of the world with it any longer. Many like to paint this as a portrait of God's genocidal nature. Few see it as mercy and justice. What was the final straw for God. How do you know when you've finally pushed Him too far? Seems like a good thing to know right? What is the last recorded act of Pepi II in the Bible? The slaughtering of the Israelite children. What religious rites were the Canaanite's known for? Temple harlotry and child sacrifice. "But he walked in the way of the kings of Israel; indeed he made his son pass through the fire, according to the abominations of the nations whom the LORD had cast out from before the children of Israel." (2 Kings 16) "Moreover you took your sons and your daughters, whom you bore to Me, and these you sacrificed to them to be devoured. Were your acts of harlotry a small matter, that you have slain My children and offered them up to them by causing them to pass through the fire?" (Ezek 16) Is it really psychopathic genocide to wipe out a people who kill their own kids? Would you want to live next door to them? Go to school with them? Have them serve on your town council?
Wednesday, August 17, 2011
3 Children are a heritage from the LORD,
offspring a reward from him.
4 Like arrows in the hands of a warrior
are children born in one’s youth.
5 Blessed is the man
whose quiver is full of them.
They will not be put to shame
when they contend with their opponents in court.
Saturday, August 06, 2011
Tuesday, August 02, 2011
Friday, July 08, 2011
It's a tad disconcerting when you're working alone in an empty house one hundred miles from home to look up and see other people in the house with you. i should probably have the radio quieter but i believe music should be felt as much as heard. So, while i think i felt the vibration of a knock, it just as easily could have been a base drum riff. So to paraphrase the ancient ditty, "i was taken by surprise, by a pair of ToNY eyes, while working in the house that day."
Saturday, June 18, 2011
Rascal, my youngest son has hit that magical age. It's a special age for a father and son. The age when i can go up into the attic and find all my favorite, old R and PG-13 rated Dvds that i think he's finally mature enough to handle: Last of the Mohicans, Gladiator, Saving Private Ryan, Midnight Run, no Desperado yet. Heck, i'm not mature enough to handle Salma Hayek. But the other night it was the instant classic Michael Mann film that ultimately pitted those two powerhouses Pacino and DeNiro together, Heat.
- Anonymous R said, i think too much. The pat answer is... too pat. So, the patricia answer to that would be, yes, you're probably right. But i've never really learned to unplug short of cutting the wires and those experiences have left me in near catatonic states so... i think it's safer just to ponder a little too much and force folk to ignore me.
- Anonymous of the Empirical Mind says, no such thing as the imponderable! i agree. Empiricism however is only as deep as the breadth of experience and powers of observation on the part of the observer.
- Work vs. no work. Two men, two inscrutable fates, one God. What's going on? The Empirical Mind says, the world is effectively random. Well, i can see how it would appear so... to one who only believes what they can see, test and prove.
- Teenagers. Should we get graded as parents on them? Emp Mind recommends further study into nature vs nurture. i don't think i'm going to be qualified to answer this in any sense until my own two test subjects make it into their twenties.
- Is society in a decline? Emp Mind had a fun quote here attributed to Cicero and a thought that something more complex than just entropy is happening since the world hasn't ended yet. And yet Cicero lived in a time when arguably, the seeds which birthed the end of the Roman Empire sprouted. Each successive generation of Romans was less than those before until if fell and the Dark Ages began. It wasn't the end of the world but it would take nearly fifteen hundred years to achieve that level of civilization again. The Dark Ages were the Post Apocalypse. Those unwilling to learn from history...
- What am i teaching my kids? Again Emmind says, faith tends to degrade from generation to generation. This is related to the last one i suppose. i might even say an indicator of why. What my boys are learning and what i may have inadvertently passed on will also probably have to wait until they're older.
- Which love is truer: love as an extension of feeling or conscious choice to love? The Mind is apparently the only one willing to weigh in on this too... As long as you're in love, does it matter? "In Love," would be the first condition i was suggesting with my question so yes, that's kinda the point... which is truer? "In love" or because i choose to love you. Cause frankly, i've had days that i wake up and i am not "In Love," but i am still married. The Mind also suggests that it may be impossible to tell the difference. i would suggest that is an opinion of either the unexamined life or one that hasn't truly tried loving in a long term sense.
- Other than as a food source, what is the point of artists/poets in a recession/depression? The Mind says, get better at yer art, carve yer own space. Ah, a true capitalist. i translate this as, it is up to each artist/poet to define their own use. What has been the role of artists and poets through history? Have they ever served any real use? If we all vanished tomorrow, would anyone care?
- Are Lego-playing adults sick? Crimso says, yes, but it's a good kinda sick. The Mind says, that Sports fans and Republicans are sicker given a few provisos. i say we're all sick but most of us are harmless.
- Is the internet a real community or an illusory one? The Mind says, possibly but no. Forums and blogs tend to be feudal. i found that to be a delightfully interesting thought and am still chewing on it. Whilst i don't feel like a baron i can see some of what he means. i have power to eject anyone i chose and Blogger can eject me. Though Facebook isn't offering me any military protection and hasn't sent the tax collector to my door yet. And i have truly reconnected in some sense with folk that i had lost touch with, i keep up with their lives or at least the parts of their lives they are willing to share and i don't have to where a silly coif or liripiped hood. This one needs to be fleshed out some more i think.
- Are we doomed... to become our parents? Anonymous Love Ya says, You are you. Not sure but i think this was directed at me specifically and not in a general sense so, thanks ;) The Mind finishes up their treatise with, We're doomed to be shaped by our parents, and that's bad enough, don't you think? i would. If that was where it ended.
Monday, May 16, 2011
i'm gonna warn y'all ahead of time. This one gets ugly. Wasn't even going to share it, started it twice and ditched it. But i just read a post in another guy's blog about sharing the good and BAD of your story and while this starts off pretty bad, it got better. So you been warned.
i was driving back to Gehenna for another round of misery, frustration and gnashing of teeth. i was an hour into the drive on a misty-gray day that challenged me to find the right delay setting on the ridiculously useless wipers, a challenge made all the more patience-intesive due to a loose connection somewhere in the switch itself. When out in a soggy field I saw a billboard that said, “Live your Dreams.”
And i wept, for i realized i no longer believe in dreams.
Moments like that, i'm glad i don't pack a gun. i'm far too volatile, far too prone to self-pity. Though strangely, not given to impulsive behavior. i'd rather savor my self-loathing. Feed it like some slimy pet only i could love. i wouldn't put it past me to walk out into the field and put some rounds through the sign though. Somehow i made it the rest of the way up to that lonely outpost on the edge of coaltown blight and settled in to work the labor of the damned. Fully convinced that i was forgotten and forsaken.
Whew! Deep, cleansing breath. In through the nose, ffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffp--holdit--holdit--and release it SLOWLY through the mouth... feeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwp-p-p-p-blblblbplt. Feel better? Good. That was dark, eh? Yeah. That's what i thought too. But it wasn't until i wrote it down later that night, just like you see it there, that i realized how brain-bugglingly stupidish it was. i looked at it in print and i could see the fallacy as blazingly bright as the sun which never seems to shine here in Pennslobovia anymore. God must have one heck of a highlighter.
First and foremost, that statement, that mood that i allowed myself to descend into walks right up to the cross, right up to Jesus' bloody feet, spits once then looks up with that sneer that only teenagers do right and says, "Yeah? Well what have done for me lately?!" i so often fall into the trap of thinking that because what's going on right now, today, this very minute, because that sucks, God hates me or at the very least, doesn't give a damn. How many times have i even blogged about the very same thing? i know, right? And yet, here i was, doing it again! How many times am i going to have to tell myself that this present suffering is nothing compared to the glory that shall be ours someday? i'm guessing every day until the last one.
The second lie i was believing was that because nothing had happened YET, that it was never going to happen. i mean, really, i'm almost forty, life is obviously over, too late to start something new now. There's nothing for it. Guess i'll just go sit in a corner and slowly decompose for the next thirty to fifty years. Phaugh! A word i so rarely get to write. Pish-posh. At forty, Moses was just getting dumb enough to kill in God's name to jumpstart the revolution. i'll bet he was a Rage Against the Machine fan. God had to cool his heels for forty more years before he was finally broken enough to be useful to God's plan of modeling a humble, Spirit-filled savior for his people. Golly, i hope it don't take me another forty years.
So, what good is all this? You suffered through it, you should take something home. i can't figure out how to pay you each five bucks for your anguish so here's a practical, wrapped for freshness, portable proverb for ya:
When you find yourself in a hole of the spirit, write down what you're thinking. You might be shocked at how much of what upsets you is a lie. Facebook is actually good for this. Have you ever wrote a status and then said, "naw! That's too (depressing, stupid, ignorant, bigoted) even for me."? If you can't do that, try and tell someone, at least say it out loud. Lies breed in dark, closed spaces, bring them into the air and the light and watch them blister and burn. It smells nasty but it feels good. i think this is how some of the Psalms got written.
One last thing though... in order for you to recognize a lie, you gotta know the Truth. If i didn't know Jesus, i wouldn't know salvation, purpose or the Promise of a new Heaven and a new Earth. Without Him i might see the lie and have no reason not to believe it.
So how about it? What lies are you believing? Maybe even based your life on?
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
- Pride goest before the fall. It also goest before getting involved in inane internet arguments with folk who you knew even before the pride got involved would never listen.
- The guys who wrote the Bible knew what they were talking about. Or they had no idea but the Spirit that guided them did.
- We spend thousands of dollars on insurance for our lives which give thousands of dollars to other people after we're dead. But for the most part, give no thought to what happens to US after we're dead.
- We are one day closer to the end of the world and Jesus coming back no matter when that day is.
- i have never been so ready for it and yet so afraid it will come and leave my loved one's behind as i am now.
- i really wish becoming a new creation was a quicker process. i'm really bored of asking forgiveness for the same old sins.
- All of these bullet points sound like ideas for the Rabbit Trails to me.... i may need counseling.
- Even that last one.
- In the Praise category, i have found a church again! Now if i could just worship without thinking and analyzing the singing....
- It's a shame more and more people find believing in the devil as the Bible describes him difficult. The world just makes so much more sense if you do.
- i love my wife. She looks really cute putting together legos. ;)
- The more time i spend honing my writing and art, the more i loathe going to my other job.
- i really hope that someday i get persecuted for following Christ instead of just because i'm a jerk.
Friday, April 01, 2011
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
Sunday, March 20, 2011
Monday, March 14, 2011
- Pray for guidance, strength and mercy
- Trust that you'll get it
- Love God with all your heart, mind and soul
- Love your neighbor as yourself
Friday, March 04, 2011
"What a great life you have!!! You keep us all smiling!!!"