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Thursday, December 22, 2005

On Christian Book Stores: Sad but True

Lost in wonder, love, and grace shares a personal account of his Christmas time experience at the Christian book stores. I was recently shown a "Christian" book that was complete with various vulgarities and cursing. Find and cherish the good stuff and thank God for it.

Monday, December 19, 2005

The Bottom 10

Instead of exasperating you with more posts about the negative side of Christmas, I've decided to just get it all in with one Bottom Ten. So here goes.....

10.)Santa used as a figure to induce good behaviour by infusing the fear of not receiveing presents. Check out the song Santa Claus is Thumbing... I mean.....coming to Town.

9.)Jessica Simpson

8.)The ambiguity of "Seasons Greetings." Why don't we say it in the fall?

7.)The fact that we are subjected to the celebration of two heros and both are often seen as ficticious.

6.)Salt ruins my shoes.

5.)Who decides what colours are "Christmasy"?

4.)The Juxtapostion of Christmas and Halloween, and that the days of expectation leading up to these holidays is equally long. And the bliss following these holidays is equally short lived. ie. boxing day is a big let down and the sales aren't that good.

3.)Secular artists singing about Christ saving us from Satan's power with the same amount of conviction as I would sing I want a Hippopotamus for Christmas.

2.)The fact that the above song exists.

1.)I tend to get selfish, lazy, and desirous of vain glory at this time of year. The very time of year that I should be humbled by the rememberance of my Creator becoming a disgrace because he desired my salvation.

I love this verse of Hark the Herald Angels Sing. It is a prayer that we should be praying especially at Christmas.

Adam's likeness, Lord, efface,
Stamp Thine image in its place:
Second Adam from above,
Reinstate us in Thy love.
Let us Thee, though lost, regain,
Thee, the Life, the inner man:
O, to all Thyself impart,
Formed in each believing heart.
Hark! the herald angels sing,
"Glory to the New-born king!"

I love the new Adam. He will be my representative.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

What I Don't Love About Christmas (part 1)

This is the first blog in a series to come. Don't worry, there is happy stuff coming.

#1 Rudolph- First of all, it is not so much him I don't like. It is the song that goes along with him. Recently I sat down and did a critical close listening of the song and discovered a few things that are so typical of our culture. Rudolph is a loser with a physical deformity. Until Santa needs to use him the other reindeer won't let him join in any of their games. The only reason they ever let him join the games is because Santa makes him cool by getting him to lead the sleigh. Then his story goes down in history as one of the great undergdog stories of all time. The point I am trying to make is that no one likes the underdog until he, against all odds and with some help from some divine force, does the incredible. The underdog is only cool when he is not a true underdog. There is a current ad campaign that shows this point. The new Dove soap ad has as their slogan, "New Dove Firming, Tested on Real Curves." They also use these "normal" looking women to say that it is cool to be round and hefty. But it is only cool if your body is tight and toned. Take a look at these "everyday women" here (view at own risk, no nudity). If these women had true problems with their bodies they probably wouldn't be doing this. It is easy to love the underdog when they look great. Take the illustration for what it is worth. It is not all-encompassing.
Anyways, thankfully the Bible has something to say about this matter. As it usually does. Listen to what James says:

My brothers,[a] show no partiality as you hold the faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory. 2For if a man wearing a gold ring and fine clothing comes into your assembly, and a poor man in shabby clothing also comes in, 3and if you pay attention to the one who wears the fine clothing and say, "You sit here in a good place," while you say to the poor man, "You stand over there," or, "Sit down at my feet," 4have you not then made distinctions among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts? 5Listen, my beloved brothers, has not God chosen those who are poor in the world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom, which he has promised to those who love him? 6But you have dishonored the poor man. Are not the rich the ones who oppress you, and the ones who drag you into court? 7Are they not the ones who blaspheme the honorable name by which you were called?

8If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself," you are doing well. 9But if you show partiality, you are committing sin and are convicted by the law as transgressors. 10For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become accountable for all of it.

If James needed to say this, it probably means that we are prone to doing it, that is, showing partiality. If God played favourites, we would all be damned. I pray that God will give us grace this Christmas to be people of true love and generosity. Merry Christmas All.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Postmodernism: Le Dead?

I guess this is a guest post (since everyone is doing it).

I really wish I wrote this post. Christian Thought directed me here and now I read Dougie Wilson all the time.

Postmodernism Is, As Derrida Might Say, Le Dead
Topic: Postmodernism

I am continuing to slog my way through McLaren and Raschke, left hand raised high so I won't get any on my watch. And I have come to the settled conclusion that postmodernism is dead. Why do I think this? What is the evidence? The proof is conclusive -- we can tell that postmodernism is dead because contemporary evangelicals have started to embrace it. The party ceases to be cool when the nerd shows up.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Amen to Anti-institutional Childcare

I just read Lost in wonder, love, and grace's post on the non-institutional childcare option, and cheered. Why on earth do people still want to let the liberal clowns play their games with the country. On the news the other day I heard that the Liberals are scoffing at Harper's plans to offer tax breaks to small business owners and give financial help to those who wish to raise their children at home. This reminds me of the Monty Python Argument Clinic skit in which John Cleese, no matter what the opposition says, comes up with a contrary position. The arguments go something like this: "yes it is, no it isn't, yes it is, no it isn't, yes it is, no it isn't."
Anyways, I agreed with Lost in wonder's comment about the shaping of our nation with the propagation of secular humanist, and radical feminist ideas . I cringe at the prospect of sending one of my future beloved offspring to the factory of propaganda that we call public education.
But I guess teaching kids that is better than having them hear about Christ. That would only pollute the children and cause all sorts of horrendous behaviour. Teaching that there is absolutely no absolute right and wrong is really going to send our country in the direction that it desperately needs to go. Pardon me, I have to stop blogging for today. I don't want to be late for my wedding. I am going to be wed in holy martimony to several women, men, dogs, and canaries simultaneously. I love them all so dearly in my heart and can't wait to raise some wonderful children.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Trinitarian Poem and Analysis

Holy Sonnet XIV
John Donne

Batter my heart, three person'd God; for, you
As yet but knock, breathe, shine, and seeke to mend;
That I may rise, and stand, o'erthrow mee, 'and bend
Your force, to breake, blowe, burn and make me new.
I, like an usurpt towne, to'another due, 5
Labour to'admit you, but Oh, to no end,
Reason your viceroy in mee, mee should defend,
But is captiv'd, and proves weake or untrue.
Yet dearely'I love you,'and would be faine,
But am betroth'd unto your enemie: 10
Divorce mee,'untie, or breake that knot againe,
Take mee to you, imprison mee, for I
Except you'enthrall mee, never shall be free,
Nor ever chast, except you ravish me.

This poem is full of paradox. The first lines tell us that we can only stand if we are "overthrown" and that can only be mended and made new by forceful breaking and burning. Our ways, our goodness, our "reason" (in line 7), are all powerless. They are "weak" or "untrue." We need the every part of that three person'd God break us from our selves and draw us to him. The rest really needs no comment. Isn't it true that the only joy and freedom we can possibly know is the hope of our slavery to Christ? I'll let the last line speak for itself. The greatest love we can know is that fathomless, and unconditional love that our heavenly father has for his children. And our greatest weapon is that Spirit that first drew our hearts to God and now gives us power to do his will. Mike Haykin would be happy to know that I found the trinity in this poem. I guess the first line is kind of a give away. Oh Well.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Hope for Godless Universities

Since I am one of the only bloggers in this cult who is part of a secular institution, namely York University, I thought it might be valuable to share with you some details of the extent of the darkness there and the efforts being made by some godly evangelical students to change it. York U was recently voted the #2 school in North America for female beauty (second to UCLA). We also boast to have one of the wildest "Pub Nights" around. The head professors of Religious and Philosophical programs don't know their Bibles as well as the 5 year olds at Paul Martin's church. They wouldn't know a theologian if they slept with Chucky Spurgeon...(or Clint Humfry?!?) or doctrine if they shared a dorm with Mr. Calvin.
The Campus for Christ fellowship is a very bright light in the midst of this absurd excuse for an academic institution. I will refer to this group from now on as "we". We just held a large debate on the existence of God in which an Atheist and a Christian were both given opportunity to give arguments for their side, challenge their opponent, and give closing statements. We plastered the campus with chalk and posters and were blessed with a capacity audience and people sitting in the aisles. The small group discipleship groups within our fellowship each have a target area where they hold evangelistic events and do random evagelism. The dodgeball tournament was a highlight last year, as well as the X-Box tournament. The long term goal of all these things is to eventually be able to reach every student every year with the gospel. The main way we seek to accomplish this goal is through discipleship. My discipleship group has chosen to focus on the Schulich School of Business. This school happens to be one the most prestigious business schools in North America. No one could possibly feel more inadequate than me and my fellow arts student partner. I could, as they say, wax forever on this. Needless to say, we need people praying for us. Pray that people would be saved at York. Our group has almost doubled in the last couple of years. We need to pray that great labourers would be trained in the short time they study at York. This is how we want to change the world, by winning the souls of lost students and sending them on to become great servants in HIS kingdom all over the world and right here in T.O. I must also say that U of T has great Christians but they are few. It is the same for Ryerson. Pray that God would allow these schools to be full of Christian young people. PRAISE GOD FOR ALL THAT HE HAS ALREADY DONE. All of this is impossible without him and his power and grace. Amen eh.
PS. over 30 people have been saved this year between York, Ryerson, and UofT.

Thats all. I will try to post anything awesome that happens.