Thursday, January 09, 2014

The Rundown - 4

These are the things I am pondering this week:
  • I have been re-reading Crazy Love by Francis Chan and Wild at Heart by John Eldredge again. These have been good books to get my thoughts spinning. Challenging books. I like a good challenge.
  • It seems like this trend comes and goes: presenting music with lyrics that "sound" spiritual as if it were God-honoring and Jesus-centered in an effort to "trick" the non-Christian into joining our church groups (youth, small groups, camps, church plants, etc...). Why not be who we are? Why can't we play music that is directly about Jesus and what he has done for us and be up-front about it even if it is mass marketed and auto-tuned? It seems like deception to me and that is neither God-honoring nor Jesus-centered.
  • If you listen to secular music, fine. Just don't use it to "trick" people. I like U2, but they are not a Christian group and some of their lyrics and themes are not God-honoring no matter how you try to justify it. If you like U2, listen to U2. Just don't try to tell me about how they are following Jesus when they sing about some of the things they sing about. I'll let you figure out which songs I am talking about.
  • A lot of this music that is used to "trick" people sounds the same to me. I don't care for it myself. If I were not a Christian, this music wouldn't make me want to join a group of Christians.
  • I wish we were more authentic about our faith and who we are trying to be, rather than put on masks.
  • I wish people wouldn't be so critical about "produced" music. I happen to like catchy tunes that I can sing along with. It's not "selling out".
  • Some of the groups out there would sound better if they would "produce" their music.
  • I saw the movie Frozen with my family and enjoyed it.
  • Downton Abbey is on again. It is doing a bang-up job of putting me to sleep.
  • Our church has a new theme for 2014: Go Deeper. I like it. I think it will bring some interesting topics for discussion and in our sermons.
  • That said, I'm gonna brag a little: Southwest is growing for a reason. They are reaching out to the lost, striving to be biblical in their teaching, friendly and genuine to anyone who walks in, and strive to maintain a spirit of unity in the bond of peace. Southwest is one church (out of many, I'm sure) who are being the body of Christ here in Oregon. I love them. 
  • I am enjoying teaching one of our Sunday morning adult classes at church: Songs of the Bible. It has been both challenging and rewarding as I study each week. I am thankful for a church that has been willing to invest in me as a person and sees gifts in me and asks me to use them without me having to beg to do it or feel like I am being patted on the head and told "nice try".
  • I am not a fan of the NIV update and have been trying to figure out which version I would like to use primarily now. I tried the ESV for a while and the NASB too. I just find that the majority of the church community is using the new NIV and their translations are vastly different when doing public readings and teaching classes. It causes some difficulty when trying to draw out the text's meaning. 
  • I have no desire to do anything "bipartisan". I have particular values and ideals. I do not want to compromise them to make people happy who do not have my values or ideals and who want to wreck my values and ideals with immoral values and evil ideals. I will not vote for moderates or those that are trying to work "across the aisle". Sorry. My conscience won't let me.
  • The speed at which the government and those on the left have gone after Chris Christie is astonishing. I am not a fan of him at all. I would not vote for him for President even if he were the candidate for the Republicans. I'm not saying what he or his administration did with this bridge is right. I'm not saying that he is handling it correctly. But, this is clearly the left shifting the country's focus away from the horrible rollout of Obamacare and the other scandals that have plagued the Democrats. Where have all these investigators been with Benghazi, Fast & Furious, the IRS targeting of conservative, the NSA spygate, and all the rest of the scandals that have happened? It's like pulling teeth to even get the media to cover these issues, but, "a bridge was closed? Hang him!"
  • I don't know where you fall on the Phil Robertson/Duck Dynasty/A&E thing. I think it was blown out of proportion by GLAAD and A&E. They knew who he was and what they were getting when he was hired. I am probably not going to watch anymore even though they brought him back. I am tired of the attacks for biblical viewpoints.
  • Same thing for Dennis Rodman. You know what you are getting with Dennis Rodman. It is not surprising. If you are shocked at what he is saying and doing, you have been asleep or were not born before the 90's. Ignore him.
  • I'm not sure when the big flu shot craze started. I have never gotten one. I got sick Sunday with some kind of cold/flu thing. By Wednesday it was virtually gone. I feel like our bodies were made to fight these kinds of viruses but we've sanitized ourselves so hard with antibacterial soaps and shots for everything that we're not able to fight them as easily and they are now growing into "super bugs". That's just my opinion. I'm not a doctor.
  • There are some authors out there that are widely read that too many of my Christian friends read and re-post and share on Facebook who are misusing and misapplying scripture to present a postmodern message that attacks the faith once delivered to the saints. They are false teachers. I wish they would stop reading them. It hurts more that they agree. I worry about the future leadership in our churches if the discernment levels are this low.
Those are just some of the things that have crossed my mind this week. What do you think?