A Weblog Dedicated to the Discussion of the Christian Faith and 21st Century Life

A Weblog Dedicated to the Discussion of the Christian Faith and 21st Century Life
I do not seek to understand that I may believe, but I believe in order to understand. For this also I believe, –that unless I believed, I should not understand.-- St. Anselm of Canterbury (1033-1109)

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Some Randomly Not Necessarily Connected Thoughts

I was in Cuba during election week on a mission trip. I had a wonderful time, but found it interesting how little the state run media and the Cuban people were interested in the results of the election. Our Christian hosts never even mentioned it, nor did they ask what we thought about it. Of course, the Methodist Church in Cuba is growing so fast and sacrificially bearing witness to the gospel of Jesus Christ in feeding the poor and taking care of those in need, even though they have very little themselves, that they probably do not have time to concern themselves much with who was elected to be the next American Emperor. I think we Christians in the United States can learn much from our sisters and brothers in Cuba. They do not like their government and they understandably want a free society, but the fact that they do not live in a democracy has not hindered them at all from their mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ. The church in America focuses so much on scarcity in the midst of its abundance, while the Christians in Cuba emphasize their abundance in the midst of their scarcity, I must admit that there are times while I am there that I am embarrassed. May something of their commitment to the gospel reach into our hearts.
After leaving Cuba I returned home for one day before leaving for Chicago for the annual meeting of the AAR and SBL. I like Chicago, but there are other cities I enjoy better-- such as Boston and San Diego. I also know that I miss being home and will be very glad to get back next week and stay put for a while.

Televangelist, Pat Robertson has come to the defense of David Petraeus and his affair with Paula Broadwell. When Robertson and other Christian TV personalities make such over the top comments, I have usually refrained from commenting myself. While their public pronouncements are worthy of a response, there are plenty of bloggers and pundits who are more than ready to pounce the moment one of these persons says something ridiculous, and I have simply not wanted to be part of the piling on effort. That too becomes unsavory in my opinion. Nevertheless, I feel the need to say something on this matter.

I find Robertson's comments that the General was a victim of the wiles of a woman to be nothing less than sexist. As they say, it takes two to tango. I do not care how attractive Broadwell is nor am I interested in hearing that Petraeus' moral shortcomings are somehow more understandable because of his time away from his wife. When two people vow to love, honor, and cherish each other until death, that is exactly what it means. There are no exceptions, no fine print, that allow someone to break those vows. We live in a culture where we are told that it is acceptable to indulge our desires, to act on what we want regardless of whether or not that want is a good thing. In Christian marriage the church rejects such a selfish and self-centered philosophy. In Christian marriage the church insists that the vows we make to one person supersede our perceived wants, needs, and desires. Human beings are not like all the other gorillas in the forest being tossed to and fro by their momentary whims. When we have to choose between doing what we want and doing what is right, we must always choose the latter; and we don't need a Christian TV preacher sending a different message.
I really like Caribou Coffee.
I don't understand why people actually get paid to be movie and restaurant critics. I certainly listen to my friends who recommend this restaurant or didn't like that movie, but why do newspapers et al pay people to tell the rest of us what they think of a flick or an entree? When I hear something is receiving rave reviews I can't believe that people get paid for their rants. Do we really need experts on taste as if the rest of us need to be told what we should like?
Thank God the election is over. If the outright falsehoods being shoveled from both sides were manure, not even hip boots could save us.
When I was in Cuba last week I was completely unplugged from social media and text messages and technology in general. While I like these things, I must say that it was quite nice not being so connected to the wireless world. I did not miss the snarky political posts on Facebook nor did I long to know what anyone thought about anything profound or otherwise. I have decided that my relationship with social media from here on will be tangential at best. I need less clutter and noise from the nattering nabobs of social media (nor do I need to contribute to the nabobbery myself) and more solitude pondering substantive things that cannot be summed on Facebook's status wall.
The Silly Season in Politics:

Petitions are coming in from many states asking to secede from the United States after the outcome of last week's presidential election. It's largely a symbolic gesture meant to express disapproval of the results. It's a real silly waste of time, if you ask me. And just as silly are those who are responding in opposition as if this is somehow an important story. Petitions of secession are submitted after every presidential election. It's a non-issue and those who sign and submit such petitions and those who make it an issue in response are likely too bored and in need of a hobby.
Quotes of the Week (Possibly, but Not Necessarily Said This Week):

"I have known a vast quantity of nonsense talked about bad men not looking you in the face. Don't trust that conventional idea. Dishonesty will stare honesty out of countenance any day in the week, if there is anything to be got by it."--Charles Dickens

"Good character is not formed in a week or a month. It is created little by little, day by day. Protracted and patient effort is needed to develop good character."--Heraclitus

"America believes in education: the average professor earns more money in a year than a professional athlete earns in a whole week."--Evan Esar
Interesting and Somewhat Useless Trivia:

The name for Oz in the "Wizard of Oz" was thought up when the creator, Frank Baum, looked at his filing cabinet and saw A-N, and O-Z, hence "Oz."--Laughbreak

This Week in History:

On November 17, 1558 "Queen Mary I, the monarch of England and Ireland since 1553, dies and is succeeded by her 25-year-old half-sister, Elizabeth."--History


Dennis Sanders said...

So, how would you counsel the general if he came to you an admitted to an affair?

Allan R. Bevere said...


It would depend on what he said to me and his attitude about the whole. thing.

The guy who needs some counseling on this is Pat Robertson.