Wednesday, April 29, 2009

And what is it we need?

Found on a bumper sticker:

Fountain of youth?
We have enough youth,
what we need
is a fountain of smart...

Great point.
H/T Henry

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

More Lousy Church Signs...

...courtesy of my mother-in-law.

This one I have seen before. It is tried and hackneyed, but it still surprises me that some churches post it.
God is like GE.
He brings good things to life.
Take-offs on commercial jingles are a bit old. Like a good neighbor, God is there, ya know? And you're in good hands with...God!

And the second just made me guffaw.
God is good.
You can be too.
And if you try reeeeeal hard, God will give you a stick of candy. Until next time, this has been another edition of LCS!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Seven Pounds: A Brief Review

I have done a few movie reviews on the blog, but all of them have been explicitly Christian films. I don't know why I write on this particular film other than needing a catharsis for a lot of pent-up anxiety the film produced. The movie stars Will Smith, and having been a fan of his for over a decade, I ordered the movie from Netflix to watch without even knowing what the film was really about. However, that is the selling point of the film; you don't know what the film is about until the end. That aspect of the film grew really tired on me after all the inexplicable scenes and not knowing whether they were flashbacks or real time, why he was acting like such a jerk in some scenes, and the continual look of pain and hardened sorrow on his face.

You are filled in bit by bit, as a fisherman allows line for a caught fish he does not want to lose. Smith is dealing with profound grief. Overcome by an accident he caused and the loss of many lives, Smith puts an elaborate plan in motion to essentially "redeem" himself for all the pain he has caused so many people. The main premise being unoriginal, I have come to expect a lot better from Smith in his tenured acting career.

Seven Pounds does portray grief in its rawest form and though Smith takes measures that in the world's mind probably seem quite noble, I have a hard time stomaching the carrying out of his plan. It was inevitable halfway through the movie what he was doing, and by the end, though I could imagine there were several tearful eyes in the theaters, I was just glad it was over.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Lousy Church Signs

Its been a long time since the last installment of lousy church signs, but I found a couple today that warrant posting--stupid, senseless, and a waste of good church sign space.
God's Stimulus Plan
The Rapture
Makes no sense at all whatsoever. Unless you mean the cottage industry that has made millions off the rapture, then we might be getting somewhere.
Does your tongue
need healing?
What? Perhaps if this was on a Pentecostal or charismatic church sign, I might understand, but it was on a Baptist one. Some signs need an asterisk at the bottom to fill us ignoramuses in on what in the world the sign means.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

An Irritation

I just got off the phone.

I talked with some young lady from "Such and Such Exciting and Fantastic Terrifically Great and Awesome Youth Ministry" from out in Texas. She asked me with a cheerleader-esque bounce in her voice, "Do you have a youth ministry?" (My initial thought was, "No, but the Lord does...")

I answered in the affirmative and then she proceeded to ask, "How many do you have?" (I wanted to say "How many youth ministries?" or "How many young people attend?") I answered that we typically have about four or five teenagers.

Insert sigh of resignation..."Oh, well, thank you sir."

And then she hung up! The call lasted less than thirty seconds. No explanation for her call. No reason why she called this little church in western North Carolina from the BIG state of Texas. Was she conducting a stupid survey? Does she work for George Gallup? What?

Evidently churches who minister in the diminutive do not count in their economy.


Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Sinner or Saint?

I was just thinking earlier today about the dichotomy between sinner and saint. I was talking with a widower today and his decision to get remarried. He was afraid there was some sin in it and that he would not be honoring his departed wife. The lady to whom he is engaged is a widow, just to clarify.

What concerned me was that he was trying to find some sin in the relationship. However, it led me to a conclusion about something that I have been pondering for a time. It often rattles me how often Christian teachers, preachers, bloggers, writers, and so on take much time to remind us that we are sinners but rarely to ever remind us that we are saints. Instead of looking for the good in something, we automatically look for the bad.

We are sinners. Absolutely. However, we are no longer citizens of this world, but we have been translated to another kingdom, a kingdom not of this world and we have an alien righteousness bestowed upon us by a loving Creator through the death of His only-begotten. My friend had nearly resigned himself to further despair because he seemed to want me to find some sin in his decision to become engaged.

I think a lot of resignation, despair, depression, and hopelessness is generated by those pastors and teachers who fail to instruct their people that Christ and His righteousness is theirs now and not just later.

Friday, April 03, 2009

A Prayer for Our Congregations...

Therefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, do not cease to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers: that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power, which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come. And He put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all.

Ephesians 1:15-23