Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Won't Someone Think of the Vampires?

"When the living dead outnumber the living, even the Messiah needs a little help!"{watch...}

May Others Be With You

"It's the running, not the cutting, that demands a cry of lament." Whether struggling with inner demons or becoming a safe target, may others be with you.

[via The Gift of Singleness, in this post]

[via Think Virtue!, in this post]

One Year To Avoid The Masks

If I were to go out trick-or-treating tonight, what might I wear to really give people a fright?

....But alas, I’ve decided not to scare anyone this year – after all Jesus does say to love our neighbor, and this is one year to avoid the masks. Don’t you agree?
[via Faithfully Liberal, HT: Ponderings on a Faith Journey]


Don't deny. Face your fears. Persevere though tragedy.

Meager Mercy?

"I hope it was worth it."
[via Acre Fields, HT: The Science of Following God, Living Morally, and Making Awesome Movies]

Friday, October 26, 2007


I ask God, the glorious Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, to give you spiritual wisdom and understanding, so that you might grow in your knowledge of God.
May you understand what really matters so you can live a pure and blameless life. I ask God to give you a complete understanding of what he wants you to do in your life.
I pray that your love for others will overflow more and more, and you will continually do good kind things for others.
All the while you will learn to know God better and better.
I pray that your heart will be flooded with light so that you can understand the wonderful future he has promised to you whom He has called.
I want to you realize what a rich and glorious inheritance he has given to his people.
I pray that you will begin to understand the incredible greatness of his power for us who believe in him.
I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will give you mighty inner strength through His Holy Spirit.
I also pray that you will be strengthened with his glorious power so that you will have all the patience and endurance you need.
May you be filled with joy, always thanking the Father, who has enabled you to share the inheritance that belongs to God’s holy people, who live in the light.
And I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts as you trust in him.
May your roots go down deep in to the soil of God’s marvelous love.
And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how high, how long, how wide and how deep his love really is.
May you experience the love of Christ, though it is so great you will never fully understand it.
Then you will be filled with the fullness of life and power that comes from God.
And may you always be filled with the fruit of righteousness, for this will bring much glory and praise to God.
Now glory be to God. By his mighty power at work within us, he is able to accomplish infinitely more than we would even dare to ask or hope.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Hasidic Hallowe'en?

It's not just another Hasidic zombie movie. "Hold on for the most violent, sexually explicit experience since your bris."

Takeaway quote: "There are Jews on the lawn. Zombie Jews!"{more}
[via The Wittenburg Blog]

Oh, Beautiful...

Existing beauty standards matter in the lives of those who do, and those who do not, meet them. A parent’s words are among the least frequent, least credible, and least relevant words that their adolescent children will hear, particularly when it comes to questions of beauty and social acceptance among their peers. In fact, by even focusing on the problematic standards of beauty that their children face, parents risk underscoring and strengthening the power of that standard.

The “Onslaught” video may itself have that effect by bringing into relief the current unforgiving and unrealizable standard of beauty that now dominates our culture. Thus, while the “Onslaught” video urges parents to “talk to your daughters,” it probably should add “but don’t show them this video” which all-too-clearly highlights the undernourished and oversexualized prototypes of “beauty.”....

It seems peculiar, therefore, that Dove would offer a film demonstrating the ubiquitous attack of the beauty industry that ends with the suggestion to parents that they are the ones to make a difference by simply talking to their kids. If the industry is the problem, it strikes me as odd that the parents are supposed to be the solution.
[via The Situationist]

Why Christians should take Richard Dawkins seriously
[via The Heresy]

Hey, It's Close To Hallowe'en

The War on Christmas weapons
[via Bene Diction Blogs On]

"It's Why You Drink..."

Friday, October 19, 2007

Containing Control

Coercive Control
Coercive Control, cont.
Coercive Control : 3
Coercive Control : 4
Coercive Control : 5

[via Suzanne's Bookshelf]

The Gestalt Switch & Positivity
[via Mined Splatterings]

Protecting Daughters From Themselves?

This afternoon I listened to the proposed omnibus bill that will deal with a number of significant changes to the criminal code. Included in this bill is the intention of the government to raise the age of sexual consent from 14 to 16. Now while most people might think this is good thing – I for one am pretty much against it.

Now on the one hand I readily recognize what this legislation is intended to accomplish. It seeks to give greater teeth to enforcement and the judicial system in penalizing offenders with stiffer sentences and generally greater consequences. And to be fair it will like do that. And who in their right mind wouldn't want to 'spank' offenders harder for this type of crime. In my opinion the law is not strict enough in penalizing sexual offenders but…

I'm not sure we are fully appreciating the latent or unintended function of this type of legislation. We have worked hard in our society to establish a more gender equality. We have a long way to go but many strides have been taken to help women gain more social power and relieve the oppression that they have suffered in the past. I'm not just talking about more equality in the work force but in more general ways – women today are the beneficiaries of a sense of common ground. I think this is a good thing. And while I recognize that there are still some who would argue that this equality is a negative thing and that it somehow challenges God design – I think that most people recognize that women were unfairly treated in the past and that the partial redemption of their social status is more inline with God's view of our standing in his eyes. I think that is precisely why this legislation moves in the wrong direction.

I think this legislation suggests that women/girls are actually weaker than men/boys and need to be protected. {continue...}
[via dcaffeinated pickle]

Sworn Friends?

How, in short, do the ideologues of the Left and of the Right react to civility, even friendliness, among rival politicians?

When I read the blogs or listen to the comments of today’s fierce ideologues, I think that they look askance at any camaraderie or compromise in politics. They’d rather win an argument, at least in their own eyes, than advance the interests of the country at large. (Or even their own causes, if incrementally and incompletely.) And they have no patience for the simple practical fact that politics, like much of life, is about people working together with people, sometimes people who have deep disagreements....

Members of Congress and other public officials are sworn to do what’s best for the country. It’s disappointing how infrequently they do that, to be sure.

But surely the solution to that problem isn’t for members of competing political parties to wall themselves off from one another, sworn enemies. According to most people who’ve spent decades in Washington, there’s been too much of that partisan walling-off in recent years anyway.
[via RedBlueChristian]

Pleasing and Placing

Pleasing Each Other
"Christian women should know their place."

There, I said it. In fact, I would even go so far as to say that if they don't "know their place" they cannot minister effectively.

Of course, I could also say the same thing of Christian men. They must "know their place" if they are to minister effectively. {continue...}
[via Complegalitarian]

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Getting Ourselves Out

People become broken with all kinds of uglies in this life, and restoring yourself is part of it as well! Granted some roads are worse than others, and some woundedness is worse as well! ....Domestic abuse needs to come out of the closet! October is domestic violence month, and there are other causes as well that use this month....and you see a lot MORE coverage for that! It is a very scary subject for ALL involved, but if we are make a difference it has to be HEARD and recognized! ....There are ALL kinds of factors that you may have - and another person has a different set to own! If we have a pattern in our lives, and that doesn't always have to be bad relationships in the past........we have certain mindsets we MUST get ourselves out of as well!
[via Emotional Abuse and Your Faith]

Speaking of which, Open Letter to Pastors [via Suzanne's Bookshelf]


In an effort to do away with sexism, the Spanish town council of Madrid decreed that half of all road signs and traffic signals should alternate between male and female walking figures. And how can you tell it’s a female figure? The silhouettes will have ‘feminine attributes’ such as a skirt, ribbon, and ponytail instead of simply being the outline of a striding man. This is their way of fighting inequality in their streets and giving women more visibility. {more}
[via The CBE Scroll]

This video will apparently seem patriarchal:

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Confronting eternity on earth
[via Intellectuelle]

How We Are?

We have just seen the last of a terrible century with, quite possibly, worse to come. Why is it so hard for us to be good? Why is it so hard for us to be happy?

One thing, at least, has been pretty widely agreed: we can’t expect much help from science. Science is about facts, not norms; it might tell us how we are, but it couldn’t tell us what is wrong with how we are. There couldn’t be a science of the human condition. {more...}
[HT: Prolegomena]

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Neither Savior Nor Scum...

Stop Your Sobbing
[via, HT: Kruse Kronicle]

Interior Decor

Now when we go to the small group gathering I always sit where I can see it, and I do stare at it catching new things I hadn’t seen before. It’s like we have this secret relationship, this picture and I. It makes me smile whenever I see it, and I still don’t completely know why. {enter in...}
[via randall friesen]


[HT: MUSE MACHINE, from this post]

For those of us who have read Afghan-American author Khaled Hosseini's evocative book "The Kite Runner," the scene that sets the stage for the moral saga is a horrific one -- young Hassan, a boy from the despised Hazara tribe, is raped by vicious hoodlums while his privileged "best friend," Amir, runs away.

That quick but unforgettably shameful scene forms the center of the story that is both Amir's and Afghanistan's. Unable to face what he has done, Amir torments his friend until he is forced to leave the house and the city, while Amir himself wanders from Kabul to Peshawar to California, working out his guilt and finding finally a way to atone.

Now this most interesting and morally dangerous story has been made into an American film, and it was to be released early in November. Surely, since the story line will follow the book's, it will portray how the story illustrates traits that have too often characterized historic Afghanistan: cruelty toward one's fellow man, ethnic differences and hatreds, the search for a workable commune among so many different groups.

But something is happening with the film that is odd only to its self-absorbed American makers. The filmmakers, working with Afghan Film, the state-run film company, picked the boys to play Amir and Hassan from auditions of 5,000 young Afghans. And while the film itself was produced in China because of the tribal and sexual sensitivities involved in the story, no one seemed to think of what the Afghan response would be to the rape scene, even though it was relatively sensitively done.

The outcome today, according to press reports of the film and the Afghan response, is that parts of the film may be considered demeaning to the ethnic Hazaras, resulting in threats against the two child stars. The American studio has delayed the film's opening and offered to bring the boys to the United States this fall for the premieres and to later take them to the United Arab Emirates to live temporarily. Other members of the boys' families may also have to leave the country. {continue...}
[via Opinion - Georgie Anne Geyer, Yahoo News]

Oh, Sup...rising.

Ann Coulter's Supersessionism
[via Ponderings on a Faith Journey]

Leaves Me Wanting More

Good as I have it, I sometimes find it hard to be thankful. The riches, worries, and pleasures of life have a way of undermining my gratitude, and at worst, leave me wanting more than I have.

Once in awhile, the flies on the faces of kids somewhere else in the world shame me into realizing how filthy rich I am. The pictures on my wall remind me of family. I enjoy sunsets, living in a land that doesn’t know war, and in a house that keeps me secure.

Yet, keeping my heart set to be thankful is a real challenge. Life has a way of kicking us in the teeth. It’s hard. Circumstances don’t always bounce our way. People don’t always treat us fairly or forgive us. Sometimes we can’t even forgive ourselves. Accidents happen. Age is inevitable, and so is death.{continue...}
[via EternaLee]

Consisting Mostly of Air

So why is it when I'm not thinking about myself, life is pretty carefree, but when I'm faced with my own sinfulness and greed, all I see is death?

...Why, exactly? To live longer? To flee the emptiness of my own soul? To keep from going out and shooting someone myself?

...I guess our name is Legion.
[via The Wittenburg Blog]

Fool's Efficiency?

I have no problem with buying an American-made car -- my Civic was built by the UAW in Ohio, my Escort was built in Korea -- but it will be a long while before I overcome my hard-earned, visceral distrust of Detroit engineering.

So I understand that aspect of what the J.D. Power guy is talking about. But he fails to notice another equally significant reason that the Big Three automakers have a lousy reputation: They've spent millions of dollars over the past several decades on a PR campaign designed to persuade us that they don't know what they're doing.

General Motors, Ford and Chrysler have loudly insisted for years that they are technologically incompetent. They have spent millions of lobbying dollars to explain all the things they cannot do, all the improvements they are unable to make, all the ways their abilities, designs and engineering are inferior to those of their competitors. All of that money spent advertising their limits and incompetency has had an impact. American car buyers listened. We believed them. {the rest}
[via slacktivist]

Losing Contact

Am I going nuts? Becoming co-dependant? Reverting to an earlier state when I had to be told what to do and when to do it?

What was going on?

....I shouldn’t find my identity in my friends. Friends pass away.

I shouldn’t find my identity in my family because my Family of Origin weighs me down with too much baggage.

I shouldn’t find my identity as a parent. For that’s too oppressive to my children.

I shouldn’t find my identity as a husband. For that’s chaining my wife to MY happiness.

So where DO I find my identity?

...That’s why I grieve when a relationship is lost. When I change churches. When I lose contact with friends. When my family goes to Edmonton. And that's okay. That's what's supposed to happen.
[via Kevin G Powell]

Open Discussion

Muslim leaders around the world have addressed an open letter to Pope Benedict XVI and other Christian religious leaders -- including David Coffey, President of the Baptist World Alliance. The first of its kind letter, entitled "A Common Word Between Us and You," is designed to promote understanding between Muslims and Christians. {more}
[via Mainstream Baptist]

The question for Catholics is how the pope will respond. There is another significant anniversary coming up, that of B16's Regensburg speech that deeply offended many Muslims because of his association of Islam with violence. This letter is an olive branch, and the Holy Father would do well to hang on. And it is significant for the number of its Muslim signatories: Islam has no centralized authority, but the dozens of scholars and muftis have tens of millions of followers.
[via The Examined Life]

Breakdown of Compassion

Of course, psychological factors are only some of many causes underlying the failure to respond to genocide. But the psychology is important and it has implications for policy that, so far, have not been addressed....

The broader message of this psychological explanation is that we cannot trust our quick, natural, intuitions that we rely upon heavily to tell us whether or not some moral transgression is occurring and to motivate us to respond. Rather, our moral intuitions fail us when the number of lives involved becomes large. Indeed, the research shows that the breakdown of compassion can be seen to begin when the number of needy persons goes from 1 to 2!
[via The Situationist]

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Are You Giving Thanks Now?

[via indexed]

In thanksgiving we remember those who have died,{continue...}
[via Bene Diction Blogs On]

With Humble Thanks by Jadon Slade Androsoff

God of old, giver of all good gifts, we give You thanks.
Jesus our Lord, sacrificing life and death, we give You thanks.
Spirit of Christ, our strength to prevail, we give You thanks.

We humble ourselves and pray, and turn from all our dominance,
For blessed are those who need, for You are shown.

Lord, have mercy. Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

We humble ourselves and pray, and turn from all our dominance,
For blessed are those who mourn, for You are comfort.

Lord, have mercy. Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

We humble ourselves and pray, and turn from all our dominance,
For blessed are those who are gentle, for Your world needs them.

Lord, have mercy. Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

We humble ourselves and pray, and turn from all our dominance,
For blessed are those who crave justice, for You are just.

Lord, have mercy. Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

We humble ourselves and pray, and turn from all our dominance,
For blessed are those who are merciful, for You are mercy.

Lord, have mercy. Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

We humble ourselves and pray, and turn from all our dominance,
For blessed are the innocent, for You deliver us.

Lord, have mercy. Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

We humble ourselves and pray, and turn from all our dominance,
For blessed are the peacemakers, for You are their own.

Lord, have mercy. Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

We humble ourselves and pray, and turn from all our dominance,
For blessed are the oppressed, for You identify with them.

Lord, have mercy. Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Bless those who oppose us, prime Ancestor, for You exalt the lowly for Your glory. Lord, hear our prayer.
Bless those who resist us, master Servant, for You overcame the powers with Your grace. Christ, hear our prayer.
Bless those we do not know, gracious Power, for Your wisdom knows no bounds. Spirit, hear our prayer.

With humbleness, we give You thanks, God of old, giver of all good gifts.
With peacefulness, we give You thanks, Jesus our Lord, sacrificing life and death.
With helplessness, we give You thanks, Spirit of Christ, our strength to prevail.

For Your sake, Triune God, Amen.

[inspired from Matt. 5: 1- 12 and 2 Chron. 7:14]