Saturday, December 20, 2014

Shiny Faced Mortuary Choir

Title doesn't refer to the charming youths above-I goggle searched for choirs, and there they were.
This morning before work I turned on the TV for breakfast background noise, and a local
H.S. Choir was Caroling.
Close to 40 years ago MY H.S. Choir was doing a TV Christmas thing, and we, being unused to anything television-wise, were scared to dearth. I mean deer-in-headlights-frozen-with-bug-eyes-and-dry-mouths SCARED!
Our Choir director, hoping to get us to relax, called us the 'Shiny faced mortuary choir' which helped a little.
That teacher is now in his late 80's and he still directs a local community choir. They had a concert just the other night.
Yes indeed, t'is the season.



Thursday, December 18, 2014

Good To Know On Which Sides Of The Moss Trees Are Growing

Obscurity, thy name is Doug.
In this inverted (logic and reason down, irration and illogic up) world, the old
canard (DUCK!) : {if lost in the woods, look to see on which side of a tree the moss is growing to determine direction} needed some inversion, too.
Or subversion. Or whatever.
Lets see...a North Korean dictator is dictating to Hollywood whether or not they should
release a film he doesn't like.
He didn't send drones, friends. Just some cyber espionage/bullying/threatening directed at Sony Pictures, which has knuckled under to the knucklehead and cancelled the film, "The Interview".
The enemy of my enemy is my friend. I had zero interest in seeing "The Interview" but now would pay a premium to go to a showing.
I thought that Putin had a big ego, but head-like-a-knuckle in NorComKorea makes Putin look downright humble.
The old canard (Duck! Again!) about moss is that it will only grow on the North side of a tree.
Untrue.
An old political canard is that the psychotic in charge of North Korea is just a puppet of Communist China.
If THEY wanted to check their political currency, and see if THEY could make Sony-a Japanese multinational corporation bow down to their puppet, just for grins and giggles...all of a sudden the trees are growing on both sides of the Moss.
In case you didn't know, Richard Ayoade plays Maurice Moss in "The IT Crowd", which is funny like you haven't seen since "Black Books". Unless you haven't seen "Black Books".
Shockingly, I agree with those in Hollywood who feel that Sony should have stood strong and told the North Korea Nimrod to mind his own. 
He hacked into Sony-if someone felt like doing a good deed, howsabout hacking into North Korea's internet, flooding it with "The Interview"?
Moss would know how to do it-he's an I.T. guy.
(srysly-look up The IT Crowd and thank me whenever.)




Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Cuba Chameleon

Wowsers. Yesterday Cuba wasn't on my emotional radar, and now it's a brand new day.
I don't know how this is going to play out, normalizing 'relations' between the United States and Cuba. There seems to be muy caliente response a'boilin' in the American Cuban community amongst those who have sought an end to the Communist regime of the Castro brothers.
Will this be 'good'? Catastrophe? Castro-strophic?
A boon or a boondoggle?
Looking for a silver lining: after extending an olive brance to Cuba, perhaps President Obama may one day seek to normalize 'relations' with Conservative Americans such as myself.
While there is life, there is hope.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

How Do You Approach God? How Do You Not?

This is a touchy subject, and this might be a shorter post than usual. Don't look so happy.
When I say God, I mean the true God Who revealed Himself through His Word, His Word who became flesh and dwelt among us.
I have seen sinners scared nigh unto death by the idea of facing the true God.
I have known some sinners who, rather than face God, invented gods to replace Him.
Accept no substitutes, as no substitutes are acceptable.
So, the True God exists.
How do you approach Him?
Is there a candle to light, an action to be done such as raising hands, speaking certain incantations?
No.
God must be approached with the reverence He deserves. If your heart is so soiled, your life such that you would not dare to seek God...
then you are where I once was.
I did not feel worthy to approach God.
In my own strength, my own will, my own soiled (un)righteousness, I am still not worthy.
But God Himself saved me, imputing to me the Righteousness of Christ, making it possible for me to approach Him.
Why would He do such a thing for someone so unrighteous?
"16“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. 
17“For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him." John 3:16-17

Here is a blessing for you from God's own word:
 14For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, 
15from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name, 
16that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man, 
17so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 
18may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 
19and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God. Ephesians 3:14-19

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Okayfine-I've Holidecorated!

THERE!
Chain! As in Marley's Ghost!
With a Key! (Avec Que) As In: 'With Whom'!
An actual Sleigh Bell!
SO...
The ghost of Jacob Marley and I Jingle Bell you a Happy Holiday!
Last year the display was a bit more muted-the bell/chain combo was hung in the front doorframe with care. Now-Big Time All Out Holidecorating in the front window!!!
Notice the Blessings abounding on my street-no sno through which to go. I haven't yet
needed my snowblower and that is a blessing.
So...what next in the celebratory holiday stuff? 
Listening to a song or two, maybe watch a  movie later. Children's Christmas program tomorrow at church.
I have to ease into this Holiday stuff.
Mister Grinch's heart grew to three times its usual size, which could be deadly!
Any Doctor other than Dr Seuss would call that myocarditis.
Be safe, citizens.


Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Dance Like Nobody Has An iPhone-reblogged from FrDW

Enough day to call it a day.
Was listening to 'talk radio' whilst working in the kitchen tonight-my workplace gifted us our choice of either a turkey or a ham-I was cooking my greatly appreciated ham-anyway, talk radio tonight reminded me of why I get so sick of politics.
Election is over, but the song remains the same: more them vs us, more 'this latest tragic catastrophe will overtake us if we don't DO something!' garbage.
The long/short of it: Man messes up, and the longer something man-made lasts, the more it devolves into entropic chaos.
Our Republic is about 240 years old. I shake my head and pray, hoping for the soon return of Christ, Who will rule Creation from Jerusalem. And do away with all liars AKA politicians.

Sunday, December 07, 2014

Loss, Loss, And Something Gained

Yes, it is the Day. Above is a picture of the USS Arizona Memorial in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.
It is also the anniversary of my Mother passing away, so yeah-we have that also.
As horrific as the attack on Pearl Harbor was, it was the impetus, the rallying point, which
brought us into the World War.
Without Pearl Harbor, would Hitler have won? I don't deal in "IF's" or "Might Have's" so it feels strange to posit such an idea.
War-as long as sinful man acts sinfully, we will need to confront evil with good.
War can be righteous. War can be sinful.
Cling to what is good and abhor evil-be honest and truthful and confront the liars as you meet them.
Love God.


Friday, December 05, 2014

No Cosby Christmas Special This Season...I Hope

"1 I will sing of the mercies of the Lord forever; With my mouth will I make known Your faithfulness to all generations." Psalm 89:1 KJV

 "2“But there is nothing covered up that will not be revealed, and hidden that will not be known. 
3“Accordingly, whatever you have said in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in the inner rooms will be proclaimed upon the housetops." Luke 12:2-3 NASB


Before you assumerate as to what I have to say about Bill Cosby, let me add the John Bradford quote: "There, but for the Grace of God go I".
We all have feet of clay, we all sin. What we sow, we reap, unless God intervenes and by His
mercy does not punish us as we deserve.
If the allegations made against Cosby are true, he will reap what he has sown.
It may sound self serving to say this, but I am grateful that God has not burdened me with wealth. If I had as much money as Cosby has made, if I had what this world calls "Power"...
I might be tempted to think I was above the law, could do whatever I wanted. That I could buy silence and cover up anything with enough money.
I have little, which is enough, and as the saying goes, "You go with what you came with."



Monday, December 01, 2014

Hope You Don't Mind

“Behold, You have made my days as handbreadths,  And my lifetime as nothing in Your sight;     Surely every man at his best is a mere breath. Selah.
  Surely every man walks about as a phantom;     Surely they make an uproar for nothing;     He amasses riches and does not know who will gather them." Psalm 39:5-6


I might have been a bit too hard on Robin Williams when I posted after his suicide a few months ago. Maybe.
The picture above is an aggregation of pictures from google from the topic 'Robin Williams/ children'. Why?
Life is precious. Life, the very breath in your lungs is a gift from God.
I have friends who have passed away in the past year whose children and families miss them terribly, all the more with the "Holidays" approaching. Life is precious.
The children of Robin Williams  grieve the loss of their Dad, and I have compassion for them and for all who have lost loved ones.
But it is a little hard to work up any compassion for Robin Williams himself. He didn't love his kids enough to want to stick around and be part of their lives.
So, why now, Doug? Why post today about Williams?
Let his story be a caution to those who may get depressed and suicidal during the upcoming "Holidays".
If one cares for, truly loves their family and friends...they should stick around and be in their lives. Even if your life isn't all that great.
If life seems untenable, too much pain...just remember that pain, like everything else in Life,  passes.
A handsbreadth, from pinky to thumb is all that we have. God sets the number of our days, and no one knows how many seconds or decades he or she has been blessed with until they are done.
So, go make your own 'uproar for nothing'. Amass your riches, make your plans, do what you will. Every man at his best is a mere breath.
But Live.



Friday, November 28, 2014

Forget Your Black Friday For A Few

Neat Interweb stuff: Listen to the world!
The ISS passes so quickly around the world that you can hear radio from a new country every few minutes. Kind of cool, and about as free as can be found.
I celebrated Black Friday by working close to 11 hours. Rather than SAVING Money...I was making it.
Listening to music from Saudi Arabia right now. Coolness.
Yah, we're coming into the"Christmas Season" and I feel, again, that this is a weird worldly
attempt to co-opt Religion for a few weeks until New Year's Eve when the focus is once more back on the world's stuff.
Why do pagans celebrate Jesus Christ? If they do not believe in Him, they are celebrating the birth and life of the Person who will judge them. As in sending them to hell.
If they 'kinda' believe in Him as a good moral teacher or somewhat...it still makes no sense.
People who make very clear that they do not appreciate Christianity will put up a tree and buy presents and decorate their homes.
They will have a big dinner on Christmas Day and might even say Grace.
It is a crazy world.
Ponorogo, Indonesia-a news station, and I can't understand a word.
S'okay. You might not understand me, either.




Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Aginst The Random Thoughts Tuesday Sked

I'm not a cat person.  But I have cats.
I've noticed that cats (at least the ones that infest my house) only verbalize (MEE-OWW) when speaking down to the lower species (Humans).
Amongst themselves, nary a word. They are either telepathic felines or experts at the non-verbs. Points are made and argued with a look or a movement. And sometimes they go from friends to enemy combatants in a millisecond (but what is time to a cat, right?).
Those pictured above are internet cats, not the ones that live here.
***********
A friend @work hit me with a query that I hadn't heard before-was I growing a "Novembeard"?
I guess so. Found that it is a thing, similar to a "Deer camp beard".
I just get tired of shaving every once in a while and so yes, right now I am bearded.
************
Young boy: Dad, can we turn up the heat? I'm cold.
Dad: Go stand in the corner.
Young boy: Why should I stand in the corner?
Dad: Because that corner...is 90 degrees.
**************
I am invited to Thanksgiving with friends which I have heard called both "Friendsgiving"
and "Orphan dinner" for those who don't have family near. I am also blest to have Second Thanksgiving on Saturday.
May You have a fine Thanksgiving(s) too.




Thursday, November 20, 2014

Saving Silverman Part D




“We have to see them as human,” Silverman said, “and hopefully maybe they will see us as human.” When the protesters told her she was going to hell, she replied, “I can’t! I don’t believe in God.”

The 'them' that Silverman was referring to in this quote are "Anti-abortion" protestors.
I see her as very human. A weak, fallible human, just as I am.
I doubt that she actually doesn't believe in God-that is more of her schtick, her public persona-she often makes outrageous statements just to garner a reaction ala Ann Coulter.
But, as you might imagine, the 'don't believe in God' part is what caught my attention.
I'm sure that you've heard it said that teenagers think that they are both indestructible and immortal-that they live and act as if they are going to live forever.
Here is part of the Grace of God-those teens impervious to both time and danger eventually grow older, wiser and come to recognize that our time on this planet is limited.
Many young people who reject the idea of God through His Grace live long enough to learn better.
I think that Sarah Silverman is a bright young woman who, thirty years from now, might very well believe in God as her youth fades and she comes face to face with her own mortality.
I hope so. I don't want to see her or anyone else end up in hell.
Every question in Life is theological.

 

Monday, November 17, 2014

Why Did The Atheist Cross The Road?

Why Did The Atheist Cross The Road?
"Beats me. Just lost, I guess."
As if we didn't have enough turmoil circumnavigating the planet, now there is contention rearing its ugly about the new moving picture of an old, old story.
"Exodus-Gods and Kings", from Ridley Scott is the furor-maker.
Some are crying "Racism", which may or may not be the case. Doubt I'll ever have an opinion on that, as I don't plan on seeing this film.
Why not?
Same reason I avoid most efforts of atheists and agnostics who attempt to 'Go Biblical'.
It's never good.
Maybe a contrary example would help make my point:
If some film-maker who politically resides to the right of Rush Limbaugh decided to put out
a Barack Obama biographic movie, one might assume that it would not be embraced by Liberals.
So when an agnostic such as Ridley Scott decides to work his creative majic on the story of Moses, it's a no go for me.
Supposedly Scott is also preparing a film on the life of King David. Why?
Does atheist Penn Jillette steer far away from God?
Nope-writes mocking books, cracks (un)wise in his act, has podcasted tirades/screeds/been rather impolite towards Christianity. You'd think that he might be happier IGNORING God. But He seems to bug him.
I have stuff that I don't like, but I don't obsess over it, investing emotional capital in hating. I'd rather be happy.
I enjoy some of Scott's other work, and Christian Bale is a fine actor...but nah. Not interested in their 'vision' of Exodus. Didn't see 'Noah' either.
Or "The Passion of the Christ".
Are their good Biblical movies? There may be-but none of those will be made by  non-believers.
Actually, I wouldn't mind if no-one made Biblical films aside from those used for evangelism,
those which sincerely share the Gospel.
"The Jesus Film" from 1979 has been such a film, and there may be others.
 But not from Hollywood. Not from Ridley Scott.





Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Patter

Not Paterfamilias-just patter. Slouncing around amongst the interwebs lately, seeing the talking heads Byrneing down strawmen and straw houses, I've noticed a pattern in the patter.
Con men and con (fidence) ladies have their story, no matter how ridiculous, down pat.
Whether they are fully convinced themselves in the narrate they perpetrate...can't tell. The best liars sound so convincing that the easily gulled are quickly lulled into going along with the tale that, if it sounds too true to be good, must be dis-proven rather than proven.
I recall a bookseller in a high class, hoity toity Book Emporium-the kind of place that low rent Barnes and Noble attempts to emulate-who had perfect delivery of his sales pitch, which ended with his gently placing a book in my hands.
No sale. But he was good.
I bring up politics {forgive, please!} only as a passing (failing) example. Not all sides can possibly be right about any issue. But the patter excreted in the real world of the internets and the realer world outside---somebody is wrong, someone right. Some of those who are wrong KNOW that they are wrong, but only some. And verse vici on the other side-there are those who know they are right and others who only hope they are right.
Cut the patter. If you are sure about things, go beyond the bumperstuck mentality and dig into why you are sure, what evidence convinced you at first, and if, years later, you still find it true.
Be honest with yourself and examine what grounds you, what you have built your life on.
I'm talking to Christians, too. Brothers and sister in Christ who have the Christian patter down, know the right verbiage for every situ...but haven't dug into their theology to see if it can can pass a stress test. Or four. Or four hundred.
Live beyond patter.