"For us let it be enough to know ourselves to be in the place where God wants us, and carry on our work, even though it be no more than the work of an ant, infinitesimally small, and with unforeseeable results."
-- Abbé Monchanin

Thursday, May 29, 2008


Hillary Clinton has claimed that the situation with Michigan and Florida delegate counting in the Democratic Primary Election is like the election in Zimbabwe where votes are not counted. This is the most outrageous thing she has done yet. There is NO comparison between the two situations. I lived in Zimbabwe for 16 years and it became home for me. I suffer daily over what is happening there. Lives are being lost and a great country destroyed due to the power hunger of one man, Mugabe, and his minions. In Zimbabwe it is those who follow the rules who lose, not those who flaunt the rules.

On second thought, maybe there is a parallel. Hillary Clinton more closely resembles Robert Mugabe than Morgan Tsvangarai in her effort to attain power. Mugabe is the one who changes the rules, ignores the rules, lies, and does whatever is necessary to attain and maintain power. Just what we see Clinton doing.

Early in the election season I had high regard for Clinton and thought she would make a great president with Obama as vice president. However, her true character has been revealed in the manner she has sought the nomination. She has disqualified herself by my standards of decency, integrity and honesty.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

God's Sense of Humour

A friend, who is a missionary in Pemba, Mozambique sent this story. I don't know if it's aprocryphal, exaggerated, true, or great fiction. It is a great story in any case. 


This particular story just made me laugh. Every time I think about it, the vision of that poor cat just amuses me to no end. Hope the story leaves a bright spot in your day.

Dwight Nelson recently told a true story about the pastor of his church. He had a kitten that climbed up a tree in his backyard and then was afraid to come down. The pastor coaxed, offered warm milk, etc. The kitty would not come down. The tree was not sturdy enough to climb, so the pastor decided that if he tied a rope to his car and pulled it until the tree bent down, he could then reach up and get the kitten.

That's what he did, all the while checking his progress in the car. He then figured if he went just a little bit further, the tree would be bent sufficiently for him to reach the kitten. But as he moved the car a little further forward, the rope broke. The tree went 'boing!' and the kitten instantly sailed through the air - out of sight.

The pastor felt terrible. He walked all over the neighborhood asking people if they'd seen a little kitten. No. Nobody had seen a stray kitten. So he prayed, 'Lord, I just commit this kitten to your keeping,' and went on about his business. A few days later he was at the grocery store, and met one of his church members. He happened to look into her shopping cart and was amazed to see cat food.

This woman was a cat hater and everyone knew it, so he asked her, 'Why are you buying cat food when you hate cats so much?' She replied, 'You won't believe this,' and then told him how her little girl had been begging her for a cat, but she kept refusing. Then a few days before, the child had begged again, so the Mom finally told her little girl, 'Well, if God gives you a cat, I'll let you keep it.'

She told the pastor, 'I watched my child go out in the yard, get on her knees, and ask God for a cat. And really, Pastor, you won't believe this, but I saw it with my own eyes. A kitten suddenly came flying out of the blue sky, with its paws outspread, and landed right in front of her.'

Lesson learned: Never underestimate the Power of God and His unique sense of humor.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Stupid signs

These are
TOO funny. Check out these signs at Stupid signs at dave cross online.

Where is God in the Storm?

Jim Evans makes the following observation in the column ,Where is God in the Storm? at Ethics Daily.

God is where God is always found--standing beside the weak and the broken, comforting those who have lost everything.

Somewhere a preacher is calling down the wrath of God. But God is not there. God is in devastated cities and crushed villages, binding up the wounds of hurting children.

Why is this insight so often missing in our churches and in the hearts, souls and minds of those professing to be Christians?

Thank you for posting this, Jim.


From Peace Takes Courage:

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Politically Correct Church Membership

Martin Marty gives guidelines for being politically correct in church membership. This is especially good advice for politicians.


by Martin Marty

This spring a certain Christian layperson has been criticized for not exiting his local church when he disagreed with something his pastor preached.

The experts on the subject have been, as far as I can tell, media personnel who never go to church, do not know what sermons are for, and have not experienced lively congregational participation; people who value fidelity very little and church hopping and sermon shopping very highly; those who have political stakes in their judgment; and people who pay no attention to the contexts of messages.

Less vocal are church members who are unsure when to advance toward the pulpit in appreciation, when to back away, or when to finally head for the door, slam it and shake the aisle-dust off their feet.

To help them, we offer this little gamelike guide, suggesting where they should sit in church to indicate affirmation or negation. Arrange your pieces on a hypothetical board and play along. Begin in your regular pew.

1. If the preacher offers the prosperity gospel, announces that you can serve both God and mammon, and uses as sermon text the editorial page of the Wall Street Journal:

Move ten pews forward and up your pledge.

2. If the preacher is not wearing a United States flag over her robe:

Back up 15 pews.

3. If the preacher avoids all controversial topics and lulls everyone to sleep:

No responseremember, you are asleep.

4. If the preacher uses scripture to affirm that all acts by the United States military in all wars have been and are just:

Move forward ten pews and smile. This is getting good.

5. If the proclaimer of the gospel announces good news to the poor, healing and hope:

Move up two pews, but tentatively. As a Christian, you should welcome that kind of message, as long as it is sufficiently vague.

6. If the preacher blasts secular humanists, Islamofascists, rappers and anyone other than standard-brand heterosexuals:

Move up three pews and volunteer for the committee to extend your preacher's call.

7. If the preacher finds that liberals and conservatives, blacks and whites and others, including himself, fall short of gospel-rooted living:

Stay where you are; ambiguity is confusing.

8. If the preacher includes a few seconds of strident and edgy language that will make a controversial sound bite at the next congregational assembly:

Be sure you've recorded it; it will be good ammunition when you are drawing the conclusion that you've had it and don't really belong in this congregation. But stay where you are so you don't look suspicious.

9. If the preacher asks those who are without guilt to pick up a stone to throw: Head toward the back pew in a hurry.

10. If a few angry words from the preacher can make you forget how she visited your dying mother, greeted your children as friends and urged you to work for justice with mercy:

By all means, leave. But admit ityou miss the community, the challenge and the gospel. It's lonely out here, and all you will hear of your former pastor from now on are sound bites.
from The Christian Century

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Another Car Show

Here are some more photos from another car show. Additional photos will be added as I process them.

Monday, May 12, 2008

"Know when to hold them, know when to fold them"

The line from a Kenny Rogers' song, "know when to hold them, know when to fold them" applies to politics. One needs when to change directions and when to hold steady. George Bush and his flock are confused with this issue, saying that "to pull troops from Iraq would mean that those who died there, died in vain." They don't realize that compounding a mistake does not undo the mistake or transform it into correct action.

Hilary Clinton also needs to learn "when to hold them and when to fold them." She has passed the point where continuing to fight for the nomination can have any positive effect. She is only deepening the divisions in the party and country by her antagonistic campaign. It is time to "fold them." Her inability to see that is a fault that disqualifies her from the presidency in my opinion. We don't need more years of Bush stubbornness and blindness to the consequences of the inability to change course -- even in a female incarnation.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

I Can Identify With This

A few years ago I spent a few weeks filling the pulpit for a friend while he was away studying. There was a young lady in the congregation who had Downs Syndrome. One morning before the service she came to me and said, "I really like your messages. They put me to sleep."

I guess at least one person got something worthwhile from my efforts.

(Cartoon from Church Mice.)

Friday, May 02, 2008


It appears that if we like
MOTS, we can vote for Hillary or McCain. Hillary will give More Of The Same Republican-style dirty win at any cost politics. McCain will give More Of The Same Bush War policies and welfare for the rich.

I don't want MOTS. If you don't like Obama, vote Ron Paul. At least he'd do things differently.