Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The Line Has Been Crossed

Every aging generation seems to lament the passing of at least one aspect of what was considered the “good old days.” While I would never advocate going back to the time of no microwaves, flat-screen TVs, or Lipitor, there is one thing from the past that our society could certainly use these days. I’m old enough to remember a time in our nation’s history when we were more religious in a good way (not necessarily more Christian, which is a commonly held misunderstanding). On Sundays when I was a child, nothing was open. No stores, no gas stations, nothing except the local ER in case there was a real life-threatening emergency (as opposed to the drop-in clinic ERs have become nowadays). ATMs hadn’t been invented yet, but even if they had, you wouldn’t have needed cash on a Sunday--there just wasn’t anything open where you could spend money. If you forgot a key ingredient for Sunday dinner, for instance, you couldn’t head down to the local mini-mart, you’d have to borrow from your neighbor instead. Anyone born in the U.S. after 1970 probably can’t conceive of a world without Sunday commerce. While such a situation might seem horribly inconvenient by modern standards, when seemingly anything could be purchased at any time, there were some positive aspects that would bode well for our day and age.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Yeah, You Are A Smart Ass!

I was taken aback recently by the unintended furor created over a Facebook post in which an attempt was made to provoke some thought about the wisdom of conducting a particular event sponsored by one of our local churches. Some of the reaction to the post was far from thoughtful and was extreme enough to be potentially hurtful, if not for the fact that, as a writer, I’ve learned not to take criticism too personally--especially knee-jerk criticism. Sifting through the charred remains of the aftermath, an attempt was made to evaluate how a Facebook interchange could go so wrong.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Earth Day 2010

I found an excellent article online regarding earth day, which is worth the time to read. 

For some bizarre reason, this link is not working, so go to and click on the article “On the 41st Earth Day, Let’s Go Shopping.”

Reno, Nevada

Monday, February 22, 2010

Got Shoes?

The Pneuma Project is partnering with Shoes 2 Share and BJ’s Restaurant-Reno for a shoe drive benefiting Haitian earthquake victims. Your donation of new or gently used shoes (work boots are the most needed) helps people in what is the poorest country in the Americas (even before the earthquake). Join us in helping tangibly with Haitian earthquake relief. 

BJ’s has also generously agreed to offer 10% an entree for each pair of shoes donated, so bring your shoes and share a meal! The shoe collection will go from now through March 15th. It’s fairly stunning to think that something so simple as shoes (which we all take for granted) can offer hope, safety, and opportunity to children and adults just a few 100 miles from our own country. If you have been looking for a way to help after the earthquake, this is another opportunity.  Do good. Bring the Kingdom.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Information Versus Transformation

A good friend was relating to me recently his frustration with some people in his circle who claimed to be Christians on the one hand but had an incongruous lifestyle on the other. They would rave to my friend about the latest teaching they listened to at the building and how much they were learning, and in the same breath talk about how much fun they had “hooking up” with their boyfriend or girlfriend the night before. The frustration my friend was feeling is identical to the frustration felt by most building leaders these days, a frustration born out of a disconnect between what congregants supposedly know in their head versus their day-to-day actions to the contrary.

Monday, January 4, 2010

What "Service" Is Not, Part 854,379

My wife recently related a conversation to me that she had with an old friend of ours who had eventually found a new church home after leaving the building we had all attended together previously. Robin was visiting a new building in an attempt to satisfy her desire to experience a Christmas Eve service, which over the years of regular attendance at our former assembly had developed into a Christmas tradition. Unfortunately for her, the experience was something of a disappointment, as the music was mostly performance oriented, the sing-along carols were done in a non-sing-along manner (which further added to the performance flavor), and the pastor’s message bordered on strange (at least for Christmas and possibly the rest of the year as well). After the hour-long misery of failed expectations ended, she was able to connect socially with a few members of our former building’s diaspora, and then subsequently informed me of her conversation with one of our old friends.