I spend too much time on it. Therefore Facebook gets the boot. I will be checking it on Sundays, as Sundays in Lent are not part of Lent. Have a good week everyone and I will check back on FB Sunday.
I so want to say it right now. I’m pissed off and mad as hell. But I’m not going to. Why? Because I don’t have to. I’m still pissed off. I’m mad at the world right now. Why do you keep sinning? Why do you keep turning away from God? Why don’t you just listen to him? Have you run with the devil so stinking long that you forgot God loves you?! Have you?!
Look. I just sinned. I got drunk last night. I’m not perfect. God loves me anyway. He’s not pleased right now, but he loves me. To tell you the truth, I’m a bit pissed off at God right now. My brother’s married and I’m not (no offense brother and sister in law, I just figured as the oldest I would get married first). I’m in Minnesnowda following a dream that apparently I wasn’t supposed to follow when I thought I should, or I’m following it and being put through the ringer. Now, God disciplines those he loves, but as far as I know, scripture never said we had to enjoy the discipline. I’m pretty sure you can still be thankful for something and not enjoy it at the time. Dead serious here. If my theological friends disagree please share.
Anywho, God loves me despite the fact I get drunk. Ash Wednesday is today. I’m tired of getting drunk. On beer, whiskey and so forth . I’m giving it up until Easter. Well, probably not. But I am going to give up being pissed off at the world. None of this is making any sense at all.
Look. I’m mad at the world. Nothing makes sense. Except for God’s relationship with me. He did not abandon me tonight, and he’s given me a chance to succeed again. Lent is a time of penance. Fortuneately, It comes as I start many new things. Oh Lord have mercy! Fbomb. Lord have mercy. Have a good day y’all. Most illogical, spontaneous post I’ve ever written. Maybe this will finally get me more than thirty views in a week on the blog. Good night and good luck. Fbomb.
I must say that Matt Walsh is a wise man. In an article on February 7, he shares how he wasn’t ready for marriage. In fact, he shares how his wife wasn’t ready for marriage. In fact, he shares how Nobody is ready for marriage. Marriage is not something one simply tries out. Marriage is something one has to experience and jump into. According to Matt, when considering “readiness” before marriage, “we consider it wrongly…”. He says we ask questions from a checklist like we are buying a used car. Matt argues that instead of this checklist, people should consider this one:
The real checklist ought to have only four items.
Do I love this person? Can I trust this person? Can they trust me? Do I have the maturity and strength to give myself to this person, and to serve this person, every day for the rest of my life?
I can’t tell you how you’ll answer those questions, but I can tell you what my answers were before I said “I do” to Alissa:
Yes, I love her, but I don’t really understand love or what it means. Yes, I trust her, but I don’t understand trust or what it means. Yes, she can trust me, but I will still come up short in ways I cannot yet predict. Yes, I have the maturity, but I still have a lot of growing to do.
And then we clasped hands and walked into that wild unknown.
Wise words indeed. Click Here to read the whole article and then let me know what you think. And seriously, there is no “right time” when it comes to love. It just hits you. When you know, you know. And when you know, do something about it.
According to ESPN Dallas and the AP, the Texas Rangers have agreed to a naming rights deal for the Ballpark again. I will reserve further comment until they reveal who it is that has it and what the name of the park will be. But I will put this two cents in: Dr. Pepper Ballpark in Arlington has a great taste when saying it.
For more photos like the one below go HERE.
So for at least once a week during the month of January, Gene Veith has posted several articles on why evangelicals pass by the Lutheran church and head straight to either Reformed, Catholic, Anglican, or Orthodox congregations. I agree with this question question asked: “Why not Lutheranism?” Well, why not? Lutherans have Kierkegaard, Bonhoeffer, and Veith in their community. Heck, we even are the spiritual home of Tom Landry, Troy Aikman, and yes, Dana Carvey (the creator of the “Church Lady”)! Lutherans contend that the Gospel is for everyone–including Christians. Lutherans do examine their own eyes for planks before checking for specks in their neighbors (Confession and absolution in the Divine Service is where this happens, as well as daily prayers). So why are we unnoticed in America when some of our founding Fathers were Lutherans even (the Muhlenbergs in Pennsylvania)?
Anthony Sacramone at his blog Strange Herring wrote a post in response on the same day as Dr. Veith. He contends that “Lutherans are boring.” Boring? Well, ok. So we sing just about the same things Sunday to Sunday and read the same scriptures in a cycle every three years, but it’s not the Service you should come for–it’s the blood pressure-raising, action packed congregation meetings after the pot-lucks you gotta stick around for (seriously, I’ve never seen so much debate and angst over what color the new carpet should be)!
All kidding aside though, this is one of my favorite parts of the article as to why one should consider Lutheran theology compared to the others:
… OK. So Lutherans don’t so much get bad press, as no press. But what to do now? How to capture the attention of these millennials now?
Haven’t a clue.
Look, if the millennial in question is looking for a church with a rich catholic heritage, one where he or she doesn’t have to make believe the Holy Spirit went AWOL from Clement of Rome to Geneva, but who also doesn’t believe in a literal six-day creation or a universal flood through which Noah carried baby dinosaurs, then confessional Lutheranism is not for them. If you hand them Pieper or Walther and they happen upon an attack on “Copernicanism,” you’re cooked. Maybe they’ll discover enough that is still attractive about the Lutheran construal of the Faith such that they’re willing to keep their “liberal” opinions to themselves — but that’s a maybe. They don’t have to worry about such things in RC and Orthodox churches, and I would imagine in high-church Anglican ones, too.
And if the millennial in question wants to change the world, get out there and fight the culture war, get those Ten Commandments back into those infernal public schools, pass a buncha laws that will put Christ at the center of the public square, and fashion a truly Christian Pilates, then maybe a 2K faith is not for them either.
So just hand them some Luther. Straight up. The only Luther I remember reading before college was the Small Catechism and mere snippets, soundbites, of this that and the other. Give them Luther’s great triad: Two Kinds of Righteousness,The Babylonian Captivity, and The Freedom of a Christian. Show them how the Great Reformer infused the catholic faith with evangelical doctrine, purging piety of medieval accretions and superstitions while clinging to what was truly cruciform. Let Luther’s voice reach down into their soul. (I heartily recommend Martin Luther’s Basic Theological Writings, edited by Timothy Lull, as an ideal Luther starter.) Share with them that the Lutheran understanding of Holy Communion and Baptism — of baptismal regeneration and the real physical presence (not merely spiritual) — is ancient and biblical and coherent, whereas if you ask a “continuing” Anglican to explain those two sacraments, you will get as many answers as there are “traditional” Anglicans — from evangelical to Anglo-Catholic. (Also make the distinction between Roman transubstantiation and Lutheran “in, with, and under.” The bread which we break, is it not a communion of the body of Christ?)
If you really want to pull out the stops and extoll the distinct way in which Lutheran do theology, direct the inquirer to Stephen Paulson’s Lutheran Theology. His head will explode. All that talk of God trying to kill the sinner in order to raise him from the dead. It’ll sound like a damn monster movie, in Apollo Creed’s phrase.
So there you have it. What does Lutheranism have to offer that Catholicism, Orthodoxy, and Anglicanism doesn’t? Luther. A pre-medieval worship that has exorcised the penitential out of repentance, all the obfuscating cults of the saints that made grace something one had to connive out of God as if he were a Renaissance prince whose attention could be gotten only by court insiders. Justification by faith alone. The gift of vocation that put a blacksmith on spiritual par with a bishop. The great freedom in knowing that God doesn’t need your good works — but your neighbor does, who is therefore not a means to a ladder-climbing end.
And the theology of the cross, which does more to eviscerate the unconsciously karmic idea of life’s causes and effects than anything else. Ever pray fervently for some good thing and received the exact opposite of what you prayed for? Yet instead of rebelling, you came to understand what it was to wait with Christ one hour in Gethsemane? You are a theologian of the cross.*
So, if you’re tired of always being a theologian of glory and want to be a theologian of the cross find a local Lutheran congregation. For my friends here at CSP, take the opportunity to go to daily chapel if you really do have the time and invite your non-Christian friends. We are in a mission field on our own campus people! Let’s spread the gospel and invite our friends. After all, if you keep knocking on the door, eventually it will be opened because of your persistence (See Luke 11:5-12).
*To get the full effect of the article, you really need to read the whole thing (which I linked to above). Sacramone explores the controversy in congregational practice in the LCMS and he has some beautiful descriptions of the Divine Service. He also points out that, “If [Lutherans are] not on the screen, they aren’t really seen.” Think about it. I really think the last pop culture reference to Lutherans in the mainstream (not counting A Prairie Home Companion) is indeed in Catch Me If You Can!
I am a member of the US military. A couple of my friends shared this video on Facebook entitled, “The Most Beautiful Thing You Will Ever See.” What an understatement. Thank you to my friends and family who served and continue to do so. Your friends and family have you in their prayers daily. Those of you deployed, we look forward to you coming home soon. God bless.
Well. I was unable to attend church in person today. I forgot whether the service was at 10:30 or 11. I did know, however that a church in San Antonio (coincidentally–nah, wasn’t coincidence–named Concordia Lutheran) webcast their service at 11. It was 10:45 when I realized that and so I elected to attend church via live stream. It was an interesting experience, but that’s for another time.
Today, I wanted to share the sermon with you. Pastor Tucker preaches a bit long, but if you’re looking for a good thirty minute devotional or dose of inspiration, this is well worth your time. The Sermon on the Mount is what’s covered and yes, Vader did not say “Luke, I am your father.” After the sermon, you can verify that here. God bless!
It has also been awhile since I posted a “Midnight Musings.” Here they are. Enjoy!
- Thank God for Cornell University. Every time I need a resource from the internet for an academic paper, they always have a solid one handy in the first two or three pages of search results. Harvard is overrated people. Go to Cornell.
- Snow emergencies in St. Paul are inefficient and inconvenient. If I wasn’t still a college student, I would be putting more effort into reforming the Snow Emergency plan.
- Third winter in Minnesota, and I am now realizing what my Dad meant by “horrible cold” when describing the Midwestern winters.
- I believe this is why my former church music director moved further and further south after growing up here.
- The good news though is that a warm front is occurring this week: highs above twenty every day!
- And mother nature is providing plenty of snow to keep this winter wonderland looking as white and fresh as ever. Here is the forecast:
- Feels like: -11
- Humidity: 69
- Wind: 12.7 NW
- Sunrise: 7:47AM
- Sunset: 4:57PM
- 5-day forecast
- (Thank you Star Tribune)
- And with that, I’m going back to my paper. Have a good night!
A friend of mine posted this on Facebook via Instagram. I did a double take. Read it carefully.
When I read the line “It is just foolish to think” 1 Corinthians 1:18-30 came to mind:
For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 19 For it is written,
“I will destroy the wisdom of the wise,
and the discernment of the discerning I will thwart.”
Where is the one who is wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe. For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
For consider your calling, brothers: not many of you were wise according to worldly standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth. But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, so that no human being might boast in the presence of God. And because of him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption, so that, as it is written, “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.”
If what is written on that picture is truly the way Christians and Athiests view the world(seems a bit of an oversimplification I’ll admit), then it cannot be stressed enough that the Gospel–the “foolishness” of God–should be shared with the world. The most foolish thing of all is to keep the Gospel to ourselves and not share it. This is part of the reason I write this blog. Sporadic as it is, I hope and pray that people hear and learn the Good news and that they take God at his Word, learning to be “fools”. I am very thankful God is merciful and that I can live in his presence through his Son’s death and resurrection.
God bless you all. Amen.
Royalty has come to Texas.
One week ago, a trade was finalized between the Texas Rangers and Detroit Tigers sending Prince Fielder to Texas and Ian Kinsler to the Tigers. Many people in the baseball world think this was a good deal for both teams. Texas had three middle infielders all capable of starting and Detroit was looking to move Miguel Cabrera back to first. Additionally, both Kinsler and Fielder had down years for both teams. Perhaps a change of scenery would do them good. As a Rangers fan, I am excited to see the new face of a franchise I’ve loved since I was a kid and to see that Ian Kinsler is going to a team where he can get more playing time and still be in contention for a World Series. I am hoping that whatever Prince Fielder is going through personally, he will receive support from a great organization that also supported Josh Hamilton in tough times. Well, only time will tell, but both players and franchises feel the decision was a good trade and it will be exciting to see what turns out.
Trades are a standard part of professional sports. Some good, some not so good. Sometimes one team gets the better deal while the other is stuck with nothing to show for their risk. People also make trades in life. Sure, it may not involve millions of dollars, but each day we all make decisions on what to buy, where to go, what to see–basically, how to spend and use our time in our lives. We make decisions on who to spend time with. Because time is a limited commodity, we have to make trade-offs. Do I trade five dollars for a big box Taco Bell meal with three tacos and a drink today, or do I spend five dollars to get a weeks worth of bananas and apples? Do I trade two hours studying for watching a two hour movie on Netflix? Do I trade time with God in the Divine Service on Sunday mornin’ for a few extra hours of sleep? Most of (if not all of) the time, we all pick the trade that doesn’t benefit us in the long run (I’m for sure guilty of this).
A few years ago, I blogged about this same issue. Well, as the Teacher said in Ecclesiastes, “There is nothing new under the sun.” We still trade grace for sin. We still trade riches for rags. Ladies and gentlemen, we are sinners. Ragged, filthy, dirty sinners. We are looking at all that is now and we forget that there is so much more to come. We are concerned with having so many riches and possessions, the right networks, the right friends…the list goes on. We trade and trade until there’s nothing left to trade for and we gnash our teeth in darkness and despair, destined for death. Except…
Except God decided (with no input or help from us) that he was going to make a trade.
From the first moment when the human race sinned God had a plan to reconcile the world to himself. According to an early Christian hymn recorded by the Apostle Paul, the plan sounded something like this:
He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.
And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him, if indeed you continue in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed in all creation under heaven…
The “He” referred to by Paul is none other than Christ Jesus, born in Bethlehem well over two thousand years ago. Jesus was the only man who ever lived who did not trade the fullness of God for earthly possessions or gain. In fact, Jesus took the world’s sin upon his shoulders and allowed peace to be made “by the blood of his cross” and resurrection. Since he is the firstborn from the dead, we who are also redeemed are raised anew and will be born from the dead as well. Day by day we are renewed in him and in his life. Each day we are given is another gift from God to go out and serve and love our neighbors so that they may know this same Christ that we know. He is our King, our brother, and our friend. He is here to trade his grace for our sin(whether you believe it or not, it’s true).
This being the case, continue in the faith like Paul says. Be stable and steadfast by grounding yourself in God’s Word. Attend Divine Service on Sunday and pray continually the rest of the days of the week. The more we as children of God spend with Him in His Word, the more we will get to know him and become like him. If you are not yet in the faith, dive into it! Get to know God. You can’t learn to swim without getting in the water and you can’t get to know God without learning who he is in His Word. Too long have I spent out of his Word on a regular basis, and I am repenting here before God and you, my brothers and sisters, now. The King is Here! How I have missed him and how glad I am Christ is working in all things! If He wasn’t, I’d still be stuck making terrible trades.