i am amazed at how simple it is to lose trust in a person, or institution. i mean, given all the things that could happen it's the little things that blow trust to crap. it's the "little white lies" that can be excused as "oh, you did not hear me right" or "you must have misunderstood what i meant" or "well, i think you just need to trust me and it will all work out." it never fails to impress me how good many pastors are at this gift, you know - the "gift of while lies." (while i am not sure what chapter and verse it comes from, i am sure it is in scripture - i mean if not, why would so many christians and pastors use the gift?)

now, being a pastor i must admit that i have this gift, and yes i have used it before - but a few years back after i realized i had this power and i declared i would only use my power for good, and not for evil. so, while i will admit to having the gift, and i have used the gift - i have promised myself that i will no longer use that gift - because i have found honesty is the best way to deal with all issues facing us.

i have been thinking a lot lately of churches that hurt people - and christians that support that hurt. i was actually surprised when i got an email from a person supporting the view that "when a church hurts a person it causes them to be stronger in their faith" - that freeked me out. you see, in scripture when jesus, or paul or peter or other, speaks of "being hurt" and "it making you stronger" it is never hurt from the church - but hurt from outside the church - all the hurt that comes up people from the church is not from God, jesus or his people.

if people in the church are hurting people in the church, by not telling the truth, by not caring for them or by just being a jerk - then none of that is from God - there is no tough love in God's world (humans like tough love because it gives them power). when we deal with truth, love and grace we see the connections of life - when we give into the gift of the white lie we then open our heart to abuse others. we are called to love and lift up people - no person who is a follower of christ would ever seek to harm another - nor would they back that harm up with a "little white lie."


"truth" in science

i do not put much trust in "science." oh, it is not that i do not think some science is good, but some is very bad - very bad. i love listening to commercials about drugs that will "change your life." you know, the ones where you take a pill for your toe fungus with the side effect (always see as "mild") that can include, heart disease, kidney problems, low energy, stomach problems, diarere and excessive flatulence - and do you think people want to take that pill? no thanks - i think i would rather have toe fungus then all that other stuff.

but anyway, science is not something we need to bank on. recently, a professor reiner protsch von zieten - an anthropologist has been proven to be a fraud. what did he do that was so "bad?" he systematically falsified the dates on numerous "stone age" relics. this may not be important to some, but what it does is show that "modern" man and nethantal man did not live togther, and the human race is far younger the suggested.

check out the story, i think you might like it


is "buzz bunny" a good name?

i like the new bugs bunny - i know, for you purists i am a heathen - but hey, i think he's cool. in fact, i like him so much i wrote an article using the "old bugs" with the "new buz" to show the difference between the "old church" and the "new church." this caused me to do a picture search on "buzz bunny," and let me say i was surprised. after the search, i am not sure they want to use the name "buzz bunny" - it just does not fit and here is why i think they need to rethink the namecheck here (think, "sex in the city")

now, the funny thing is, i called the "wb" and wanted to share with them what i found (that naming him "buzz bunny" might not be as smart as they think) - but it felt like i was pulling teeth and that i was the bad guy. as i called, the first person i spoke with was a operator who had "no time to listen to my story" and she transferred me to someone else, who did not have the time, who sent me to another who did not have the time, who finally sent me to a paul mcguire in pr - when i finally got to talk with paul, he told me he had "30 seconds to speak" "with me" - so i tried to explain, but got the "bum's rush." i recalled (i know, i seem to like the abuse) and i spoke with one of the "presidents" offices (a nice guy named jacob - sings well too in "dave"(can't spell his last name) office) who got me "reconnected" to paul - who again "talked" at me and not too me (as i talked with him he was doing other work and not listening to my voice) - he again, gave me the "bum's rush."

my desire was to same them a fight with the religious right and you would think a company that cares about kids would like the "heads up" and no judgment - well, it just goes to show the heart of corporate america.


the walking wounded

What does one do with the "walking wounded" of the faith? You know, those that church people tread like crap and then blame the wounded. Granted, this is nothing new, but it is something shameful the church needs to face. While many in the church strive to "copout" form blame, they honestly need to look at themselves and see what they have done. Think of it this way, back in the day John the Baptist was standing on a river and people were flocking to him. In Matthew's (3:5-7) recording of events he says that "People poured out of Jerusalem, Judea, and the Jordanian countryside to hear and see him in action. There at the Jordan River those who came to confess their sins were baptized into a changed life."

Picture that, your standing in the river next to this crazy guy named John and all these people are flooding to his side - for what? To get wet? To be "washed?" I don't think so. They were coming because they were wounded by life, by just living life, they were wounded by the religious leaders of the day - they were hurt and in pain. They heard of this guy who loved, was a bit crazy but would help them, so one who would take their pain, their hurts and help them build community. But with this grace, came pain because as the people gathered, so did the religious leaders - the people who caused much of the hurts the people had in their lives, and John let them come, but soon let them have it. He held back nothing and told them that they were the cause of this pain, they were the ones who were more centered on their jobs then about helping people know God. Over all, he was not very nice to these men, while he welcomed "crooks and whores" he turned on the religious leaders of his time for all they did. So, what are we to do? I keep hearing how the church is important for "healthy Christians" and yet I know of Christians who have been so wounded by the church, the idea of returning cause them to curl-up and die. I keep hearing how the church is not "prefect" and that it is filled with "imperfect" people in a "fallen" world and I wonder if any of those who claim this ever read the scripture.

If you keep looking in Matthew, he shares a bit more about what happened at the river, and how lives were change, and how people where made new people. When the religious leaders were giving Jesus a hard time about everything Jesus said and did; Jesus turned to them and said, "Yes, and I tell you that crooks and whores are going to precede you into God's kingdom. John came to you showing you the right road. You turned up your noses at him, but the crooks and whores believed him. Even when you saw their changed lives, you didn't care enough to change and believe him." Wow, talk about a smack in the face. But why would Jesus say that? Because, Jesus knew that only when a person is truly changed, truly made different is a community formed.

while most quote the "crooks and whores" line, they leave out the "changed lives" line. I have no problem with knowing the church is filled with sinners, but we need to remember that we are "changed sinner" not just sinners. It seems that they forget that as we walk in Christ, we are changed from the inside out. We are changed and made new people in Christ. I love the way Paul put in his letter to the Romans (12:1-2). Paul said, "So here's what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life--your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life--and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don't become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You'll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you." Funny, Paul is telling us that if we allow the "world" to determine our faith we are not living a changed life. Our changed life is to be above the culture, or our "humanity." In another letter (Ephesians) Paul shares some deeper understanding when he said, "Don't grieve God. Don't break his heart. His Holy Spirit, moving and breathing in you, is the most intimate part of your life, making you fit for himself. Don't take such a gift for granted. Make a clean break with all cutting, backbiting, profane talk. Be gentle with one another, sensitive. Forgive one another as quickly and thoroughly as God in Christ forgave you."

I think it is too easy for people in the church to copout on the "fallen" world excuse for treating people poorly - the church, a community of faith, it to be a place where changed people, love, forgive, lift and do not judge - if a community of faith creates "walking wounded" one has to ask if that church is truly walking with Christ.


my friend vince beresford blogs a very good question concering the leadership of our churches - check it out....link


some very stupid stuff

the other day, tina (my wife) pointed out some very stupid things to me in the news - and i just had to pass them on:

Colorado Teens Fined for Giving Cookies to Neighbor
DURANGO, Colo. (Reuters) - A Colorado judge ordered two teen-age girls to pay about $900 for the distress a neighbor said they caused by giving her home-made cookies adorned with paper hearts.... link

COMMENTS: i am sorry, but it seems that the judge is out of their mind. it is a sad day when kids are sued, and lose, because they were trying to be kind - sorry, someone needs to take the judge and not let him have any cookies and milk, ever.

School Halts Adopt a Sniper Fund-Raiser
CHICAGO (Reuters) - A U.S. university in Wisconsin has blocked an attempt by Republican students to raise money for a group called "Adopt a Sniper" that raises money for U.S. sharp-shooters in Iraq...link

COMMENTS: well, glad that was not a big sucess.

Woman Accused of Giving Lethal Sherry Enema
HOUSTON (Reuters) - A Texas woman has been indicted for criminally negligent homicide for causing her husband's death by giving him a sherry enema, a police detective said on Wednesday....link

COMMENTS: gives new meaning to "hey babe, let's get a drink."


could they be the same?

a friend blogs (mark bushor over at the journey, a baby boomer pastor in a postmodern world) and takes a look at the possibilities in a posting Similarities in the Jesus Movement & the Emerging Church

check it out, and share what you think