MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.

A Fate Worse than Death

March 29th, 2005 Viewed 1047 times

It’s interesting, around this time of year, to have the conversation be about a person’s life, death, and what it means to be a person.  Given this is the time of year that we remember what Jesus did on the cross,
there are some interesting things to think about:

In a time where we are debating what life is and what life means, it’s instructive to remember what the estimation of Jesus was.  Having been placed on a cross, He was considered less than human.  Isaiah 53 states that the estimation of the people that saw Him was that He was being afflicted by God.  His image was to be so disconfigured that people would not think of Him as human.

Jesus was innocent of all wrong doing, placed on the cross because of the sin of the others.  And if this was not enough, the very people he was dying to save were the ones that place Him there and ridiculed Him.  The very ones He loved placed Him there.

But the greatest thing is that He rose from the dead– giving us the hope of Easter.  Paul contends that since Christ is risen, our faith is not in vain.  We can truly expect to live because He did.

The fate, however, that is worse than death is dying without having believed on Him.  Terri can die– as we all will barring the return of Christ– and it will not be the end for her.  She may have trusted Christ for her salvation, in which case she will be much better off.  She may not know Christ, and in that case, she will be far worse off than starving to death.

Michael will be judged by Almighty God for what he has done with/to his wife.  Earthly courts may get it wrong, but the Heavenly one will not.

Let’s, as Christians, stop seeing the world as the final arbiter of morality, and look to the Divine justice, realizing that regardless of Terri’s spiritual state and regardless whether she lives or dies today, this week, or years from now, that those that had an opportunity to do something (including Michael,  the parents, the judges, the govenor, and you and I) will be judged for how they responded to what was going on.

We also need to make sure that we are right with God and in His will.  For just as nothing can take us out of the hand of the Father, we can also be sure that we cannot get there because of any amount of good deeds we do here on Earth.

Resurrection Sunday of the Bunny

March 25th, 2005 Viewed 1227 times

Crown of ThornsWe borrowed “Rack, Shack and Benny” from the Church library a couple of weeks ago, and it has the infamous “Bunny Song” on it. No, it’s not the original, which had Mr. Nezzer singing “I won’t go to church and I won’t go to school…”, but it talked about it at the end. The comment was made by Phil Vischer that they learned that they couldn’t make the bad song a catchy tune.

Satan knows the power of catchy things. It’s part of the reason of the sexual onslaught that we face everywhere we turn. It’s also in the continual attempt to replace Christianity with other imagery. Santa Claus has remained the secular imprint of Christmas, but the Easter Bunny proves that people now associate it with Easter– and call Easter the holiday. Good thing it’s not “Christmas Claus!”

In both cases, Christians have an interesting moral dilemma. First off, the odds that Christmas was the true birthday of Jesus are not very good at all. Second, we know when in the Jewish Calendar Jesus was crucified (during Passover) and passover is now a month later than “Easter”. How do we figure out Easter?

Easter is observed on the Sunday after the first full moon on or after the day of the vernal equinox. (Source http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Easter)

It is very accurate? I don’t know– though I probably would like to see it bound to Passover, instead of a lunar calendar. In any case, I prefer Resurrection Sunday myself…

So, Happy Resurrection Sunday all of you– He is RISEN!

Who Has the Right?

March 24th, 2005 Viewed 1010 times

In this highly charged national debate over the case of one woman and the disagreement in her family, it is necessary (I think) to step back and look at this as a question of rights.  We can argue all day about what we think in terms of emotions.  Some will say that they would never want to be put in this state.  Some would argue about what Terri can and cannot do.  My question is a little more basic:

Who has the right to say when a person should no longer be kept alive, and is that right immutable?

Certainly, each individual can state for themselves whether they want extra measures performed to keep them alive– they can file Do Not Resuscitate orders, they can state in living wills who their healthcare
proxy is, and (in the extremest sense) they can take their own life.

After that, should a person not be able to express their wishes, it falls on the next of kin.  In Terri’s case, that’s her husband.  This supports the Biblical command that the two became one, and the law recognizes that (though don’t ask them!).  If Terri is/was not coherent at all, it would seem that he should be able to make an argument that she would not have wanted extra measures.  But does he have the right to determine that for a woman that may just have been severely disabled by this?

We run into dangerous territory here.  What’s the test to determine when someone else’s life is no longer worth living?  How about when they get Alzheimers?  Paralized?  Confined to a wheel chair?  Are we willing to give some other person the right to determine that?

To make matters worse, how about a person that no longer has a vested interest– in fact, it would be better to that person if you were dead?  In Michael’s case, he has a whole other family and stands to benefit financially.  Should he have the right to decide?

Terri Schiavo’s Last Day of Food?

March 18th, 2005 Viewed 1312 times, 1 so far today

I’m sure everyone’s reading and seeing information about this case.  I really don’t know if I can actually add any more to the discussion that hasn’t already been said.

I echo Peggy Noonan in her comment that it’s amazing how much press this story is getting.  It is important to get this right.

  • We need to show that we support life.
  • We need to set a precedent for life.
  • We need to make sure that we stop the tide of life being eroded as a guarantee.
  • We need to make sure that all Americans have the right to Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness, regardless of their mental or physical state.

These are important times.  Pray that God might spare us from ourselves and our lust to have things convenient for ourselves.  Pray that the judges and people in this case would have guidance from on high– but most of all:  That He might receive glory in this.

Divorce and the Family

March 14th, 2005 Viewed 1439 times

I’m in the middle of reading Bob Just’s article “Son of divorce“.  It really is a must read for my generation.

I can remember as a child when my grandparents left and came back from being in the south for the winter.  I would spend all summer bonding with them, only for them to leave.  When they would return, I would wonder if they were the same as when they left.  I can remember one occasion where I actually hid when they returned, instead of running out to meet them.  I saw it yesterday in my children too, when their aunt who they haven’t seen in a little while, came to watch them.  My oldest hid.

I can’t imagine what it is like to be constantly pulled to take sides in a selfish battle between parents.  I never had to pick a side.  Not that my parents never disagreed, but it was usually out of my sight, or I saw them reconcile.

However, my in-laws are in constant turmoil, and I find that her kids– my wife and her sister– are always expected to take sides against her new husband.  Not that I think that either of them are guiltless, but this is something that, to some extent, is totally foreign to me.

I think it’s instructive what Bob Just says in this article– marriage is about me giving love to someone, not about being happy.  Sadly, too many people are basing relationships and marriages on only that– my happiness.  Now we have a generation of children that are not as resilient as they thought, do not realize what marriage is all about, and place no value on it.  Just look at the number of:

  • couples cohabitating
  • unwed pregnancies
  • divorces
  • second divorces

This is a serious problem.  There are a lot of broken people out there that need to be pointed beyond this life to realize something greater.  Just look at the marriages that last 60 years, but the couple took a
week to meet and get married.  The secret is the commitment that leads to mutual love, which leads to strong families and well mannered children!

Maybe there is something to the courtship group’s idea that dating is just practicing divorce.  Maybe we are helping to train our children to look for happiness instead of love and commitment.  In any case, there’s a lot of prayer and soul searching we should be doing in searching for that someone and after we’ve found
them to know what the true meaning of marriage is.

Sickness, Social Security and Another Weekend

March 11th, 2005 Viewed 1216 times, 1 so far today

Sorry I haven’t been around a bunch. A few weeks ago we had some of the head cold stuff hit the family, and then a more serious thing hit Virtuous Blonde, which had us in and out of the ER the beginning of the week. I am back, however, and everyone’s on the mend.

So, there’s all this debate on Social Security and what to do about it. I don’t know about you, but the idea that I pay in money to a system that I may never get back bothers me. I’m not, as one commentator stated, against helping other people out. I give money to my church, I’ve donated to charitable causes. I’m also under the opinion that it should be the local church that helps the poor and the destitute, not the federal government.

I am also aware that if you did not take the money away from some people, they would spend it all and have nothing to retire on. In our current system, that would put them on welfare, or they would have to keep working. I suppose some would end up depending on their kids to support them. This sounds really scary, but I’m sure this is how it worked when we were more an agricultural society.

I think this all goes to a main problem. We have set up a series of expectations in America, and a certain lifestyle we assume we have to have. We give credit out like it was candy, and the majority of Americans are in debt, with getting out of debt a major industry. (Just watch the infomercials!) We live at or above our means instead of below. I can remember that Clark Howard guy make some statement that if we lived below our means now, we could save and have enough money in retirement, and we’d be used to living with less so it wouldn’t be such a culture shock.

We also, as a group, only pay attention to providing for our family. Many more people are taking their parents in, but the nursing home industry still is strong from money from the parent’s house, etc. rather than the kids raising them.

If our attitude to things does not change, then we are in for quite a shock. There certainly are people who are spending and banking on SS to be there when they retire instead
of saving up themselves. Personally, I’m glad I have money in a 401K. I hope to contribute more in the future. Hopefully, you’ll start saving right away too. Also, save up for that big expense, instead of charging it all.

Anyway, we’re up against another weekend– hopefully there’ll be more posts next week. Until then, take care!

I Wanna to be Like Mike

March 4th, 2005 Viewed 1191 times
Paris Hilton at the 2008 Sundance Film Festiva...

Paris Hilton at the 2008 Sundance Film Festival, in Utah, United States. Português: Paris Hilton no Festival Sundance de Cinema 2008, em Utah, Estados Unidos. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It was a rather interesting situation. There I was, going for a Snickers bar from a vending machine when I passed by some coworkers, I stopped to chat, and noticed that they had a bag with Paris Hilton on it. I remarked something like “ugh, not her” and wanted the bag turned around. One of the ladies there asked, “Yeah, she’s kind of trashy, but don’t you think she’s pretty?”

I think this is the second time that I’ve been asked, by a woman, to overlook something because of a girl’s looks. The other time was in regards to the other most searched out name “Britney Spears”. She may not be able to sing, “but don’t you think she’s pretty?”

I find it funny that in a world in which we are supposed to look at the female sex as something more than a body (at one point in time, I would have said “pretty face”, but body is now more accurate), we are now expected to overlook a glaring character flaw and a lack of talent because someone looks “pretty.” Though even that is questionable since they both dress like tramps.

This brings me to Rebecca Hagelin’s article today entitled America’s little girls… or tramps? She makes some great points. In this society, we have become oversexed. We have it on TV, on billboards, on the Internet, etc. More has to show– more of whatever the current body part is in fashion. It has to tease. It has to look trashy just like their idol.

The only thing I don’t understand in all of this is why it’s female teachers that are preying on male ones, with the number of girls that look like they should be walking the streets instead of the halls of a school. They wear makeup to look older. They wear as tight and revealing clothes as they can get away with (and, to tell the truth, a lot of them don’t have the bodies to pull of what these “stars” are).

There is virtue in something I read a long time ago. A woman that dresses appropriately has an appeal that no girl dressed like a tramp will ever have. There’s something about appropriate dresses and other clothing that speak “feminine and virtuous” that just appeals to men. That’s the only reason I can figure that there are songs about wanting to be with the “good little girl” or for some of the discussion around reputations of certain girls.

I read another article recently from someone on the other extreme. He almost encouraged burka material, going so far as to say that women should wear mute clothes for outwear (dull colors like grey, etc.) and saving the colorful intricate stuff for the inside. I think we’ve come so far that we aren’t surprised any more. We’re bombarded with it on the beaches, on TV, on billboards and every where we go. What used to be something private (underwear) is now outerwear. What was meant for the bonds of marriage is now advertised everywhere.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for married women buying stuff from Victoria’s Secret or wherever. I’m not for teens going there to shop for something to show their boyfriend (or to give their girlfriend!) or peekaboo it out of their clothes. That’s where I stand, and no child of mine shall dress like a tramp!

Where do you stand?

MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.