-- Abbé Monchanin
Sunday, December 27, 2009
Friday, December 25, 2009
Thursday, December 24, 2009
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Monday, December 21, 2009
Sunday, December 20, 2009
Thursday, December 03, 2009
Thursday, November 12, 2009
Christian janitor died saving Muslim students
At a time when many "Christians" are screaming hatred toward Moslems, here is an example of a truly Christian response to Islamic Terrorism.
Friday, November 06, 2009
Saw a sign at a church that said, "Have you talked to God? He's listening." I want to stop and tell them to change it to, "Have you listened to God? He's talking."
Imagine what would happen if we listened to God instead of talking all the time!
Wednesday, November 04, 2009
Just finished another Old Kumabe Family Photo -- I bet Kathy's dad took this picture because when he visited us in Zimbabwe, he took a photo of Kat, Malaika and me at Victoria Falls. He cut off my head. If he took this one, maybe it was just the way he took pictures and not an attempt to get me out of the picture. ;-)
Monday, November 02, 2009
Thursday, October 29, 2009
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Rich Americans would never do this:
Rich Germans demand higher taxes
Rich Americans and Republicans would do this:
We woke up this morning to learn that the new center-right coalition of Ms Merkel’s CDU and Mr Westerwelle’s FDP have decided to cut taxes.
Thanks to Loomnie for bringing this to my attention.
Friday, October 23, 2009
"During the thirties a woman came to Sevagram asking Gandhi to get her little boy to stop eating sugar; it was doing him harm. Gandhi gave a cryptic reply: 'Please come back next week.'
The woman left puzzled but returned a week later, dutifully following the Mahatma's instructions. 'Please don't eat sugar,' Gandhi told the young fellow when he saw him. 'It is not good for you.' Then he joked with the boy for a while, gave him a hug, and sent him on his way. But the mother, unable to contain her curiosity, lingered behind to ask, 'Bapu, why didn't you say this last week when we came? Why did you make us come back again?'
Gandhi smiled, 'Last week,' he said to her, 'I too was eating sugar.'"
Told in Gandhi the Man by Eknath Easwaran
Monday, October 19, 2009
Someone has gotten the right idea!
Transparency Is Essential for Christian-Based Organizations in Islamic Countries
Will the abuse of the Bible never end? Canaan Banana (former ceremonial president of Zimbabwe and Methodist pastor) wrote a book suggesting that the Bible should be re-written. Are conservative Americans taking up the challenge (though moving in a different direction than Banana suggested)?
Bible Too Liberal? Conservative Bible Project Will Fix It
Friday, October 09, 2009
"The unity of the church -- no, the church itself -- is called in question when groups of Christians segregate themselves on the basis of such dubious distinctives as race, ethnicity, sex, or social status."-- David J. Bosch Transforming Mission
Thursday, October 08, 2009
"Through their conduct, believers attract outsiders or put them off . . .. Their lifestyle is either attractive or offensive. Where it is attractive, people are drawn to the church, even if the church does not actively 'go out' to evangelize them."-- David J. Bosch Transforming Mission
Wednesday, October 07, 2009
A story from Steve Hayes at Notes from underground:
A very rich man who lived in Alexandria prayed to God every day that the lives of the indigent be made easier. On hearing about this, Abba Makarios sent him a message: 'I would like to own all your estate.'
The man was puzzled, and sent one of his servants to ask what [Abba Makarios] would do with all that wealth.
Abba Makarios said: 'Tell your master that I would immediately answer his prayer.'
Tuesday, October 06, 2009
Sunday, October 04, 2009
Friday, October 02, 2009
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Sunday, September 20, 2009
Bill Moyers gives us insight into the "Do as I say not as I do" aspect of the health care debate. Remember the adage, "Whenever you encounter propaganda [advertising], ask yourself, 'In whose interest is it that I believe this?'"
Friday, September 11, 2009
Thursday, September 10, 2009
Wednesday, September 09, 2009
Speaking of reading the Bible:
"The fool falls into the temptation of saying, 'I already know this text!' The wise one knows that it is one thing to know the chemical formula of water and another to savor it by a spring on a summer's day."-- M. Basil Pennington Lectio Divina
Sunday, September 06, 2009
Based upon the greater importance placed upon insurance company profits over affordable health care for all citizens in the current debate, it is appropriate that the phrase "In God We Trust" is emblazoned upon our currency. Money is truly the god of the USA today.
We venerate the profits while castigating the prophets. May the God of all creation have mercy upon us and lead us to repentance.
Friday, September 04, 2009
Monday, August 31, 2009
"An important disposition for the operation of living faith within us is humility, the full acceptance of reality. . . . Humility is the acceptance of our profound ignorance with regard to God as well as to so many other things. We know what we know, and it is not very much. We know what we do not know, and that is a lot more. And we accept the fact that beyond this there is an infinity that we do not even know we do not know."-- M. Basil Pennington Lectio Divina
Friday, August 28, 2009
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Saturday, August 22, 2009
Friday, August 21, 2009
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
"The emphasis in the New Testament is on listening and responding to the Spirit rather than initiating projects that God is expected to back up, even though God had little or nothing to do with them."-- Thomas Keating Intimacy With God
Monday, August 17, 2009
"Human nature prefers to offer substitute sacrifices to placate God rather than to offer the sacrifice that God clearly states in Scripture is the only acceptable one, which is the gift of ourselves."-- Thomas Keating Intimacy With God
Thursday, August 13, 2009
"Prayer is not a method or power given to us so that we can order God around, or tell God how to run the world (or our own world). It is a way to express our love for God and our dependence on God's mercy."--William A. Menninger The Loving Search for God
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Monday, August 10, 2009
-- William A. Meninger The Loving Search for God
"As for the devil, I do not fear him. Nor can I approve of those who seem to be living a kind of constant 'devil theology.' It almost seems as if they pay more attention to the devil than to God. They see him behind every telephone pole and under every bed. He seems to play a great role in their lives, as they are always talking about him.
"I would rather talk about God and see God where God is -- behind every telephone pole and under every bed and everywhere else. . . . As for me, and, I hope, for you, dear friend, I will continue on in the loving search with the help of God's grace and 'even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for God is with me.'"
I once visited a church in California while on furlough from Zimbabwe. The Sunday School class I attended was doing a prolonged and intensive study of the devil. There was a strange fascination with the topic (and some rather bizarre interpretation of Scripture) with no mention, and seemingly no interest in God, Himself, or Jesus in particular. I suggested to the pastor that he might want to monitor the class to see if the devil had taken the members eyes off of God. What occupies our minds controls us.
I heard of a fellow who was challenged by a fundamentalist rabble-rouser, "Do you believe in a literal devil?" He replied, "I don't believe in the devil, but I've met him in the streets among the drug dealers and pimps. I BELIEVE in Jesus." A good response.
Saturday, August 08, 2009
"Externally motivated enthusiasm is not from God. It may be good and useful or it may be evil, but it is not spiritual. I am sorry to say that we see a great deal of this kind of enthusiasm today passing off for religion. Television seems to be a popular medium for this kind of hype. Beware of emotional responses generated by overenthusiastic 'Bible thumping' preachers or by media-generated audience enthusiasm, stimulated by stage effects and electronic embellishments."--William A. Meninger The Loving Search for God
Thursday, August 06, 2009
Thursday, July 30, 2009
"I plead with you, for the love of God, do not give up on your prayer. Start over again every day. Do not look for consolations. Remember again and again that love begins when nothing is expected in return. You will have consolations enough when God wills it. Enjoy them when they are given, but do not look for them or become attached to them. Seek the giver, not the gifts."-- William A. Meninger The Loving Search for God
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
"A real Christian, as opposed to a cultural Christian, is not one who never sins. He or she is one who, having sinned, is willing to reach out and find his or her sufficiency in Christ and start over again--today!"--William A. Meninger The Loving Search for God
Tuesday, July 07, 2009
"Many years ago there lived a scholar who asked an old rabbi what could be learned from the Talmud. The rabbi told him of two men who fell down a chimney. One man arrived at the bottom dirty, while the other arrived clean. Is that the lesson of the Talmud? the scholar asked. No, replied the old rabbi, listen to me: the dirty man looked at the clean man and thought himself clean. Is that the lesson of the Talmud? asked the scholar. No, replied the rabbi, for the dirted man looked at his own hands and seeing them sooty knew he'd been dirted. This then is the lesson of the Talmud? said the scholar. No, said the rabbi. Then what am I to learn from the Talmud? asked the scholar. The rabbi told him: You will learn nothing from the Talmud if you start by believing that two men can fall down a chimney and not both be dirtied."
-- Len Deighton City of Gold
Sunday, July 05, 2009
"We were taught, as much by example as precept, to respect our minds and to use them; to examine the evidence before rushing in with our opinions; to distinguish between fact and theory; to see history through the eyes of the poor and vanquished, not merely those of the powerful and the conquerors; not to believe that something is true simply because it would be pleasant or convenient if it were and, when exposed to propaganda, to ask ourselves, 'In whose interest is it that I should believe this?'"
-- P. D. James Time To Be In Earnest
Unfortunately, this lesson has not been taught or learned by the majority of citizens of the U.S.A. today. We are too quick to voice opinions and too ready to view history through the eyes of the powerful and conquerors rather than consider the view from the eyes of the poor and vanquished. (This is a complete departure from the attitude of God revealed in the Bible and especially in Jesus. Ironic for a nation which so many claim to be a Christian Nation. Especially since those voicing the claim tend to be the ones least likely to empathize with the poor and vanquished.)
A good place to begin practicing to learn this lesson is the current health care debate. When confronted with the TV ads and proclamations of the politicians and lobbyists, let us ask ourselves, "In whose interest is it that I should believe this?" There is clearly a divide between those seeking to maximize profits and those seeking to maximize "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" of the citizens of this country.
Wednesday, June 03, 2009
Southern Baptists have had some spiritually and morally sick leaders in recent years. There is nothing of the Imitation of Christ about them. They are more the antithesis of Christ. The following is an example: Ex-Southern Baptist Leader: Abortion Doctor’s Murder Answer To Prayer
Is it any wonder that people fail to know the love of God in their lives?
Monday, June 01, 2009
Friday, May 29, 2009
Sunday, May 24, 2009
Saturday, May 23, 2009
Monday, May 11, 2009
Luke and I went to the Hot Springs Cruisers' car show Saturday before between rains. I've begun processing the pictures and here they are. More to be added later.
Wednesday, May 06, 2009
Last night was Awards Night at Hot Springs National Park Community College. My son, Luke. was inducted into the National Technical Honor Society and won the Outstanding Work Ethic award. He's lucky. When I was in school you either did vo-tech or college prep. He's getting to study Automotive Service Technology while doing college prep and AP courses at Lakeside High School. Smart kid. Good kid. Must take after his mother.
Friday, May 01, 2009
"The more often Americans go to church, the more likely they are to support the torture of suspected terrorists, according to a new survey."
This is the most revolting news I've read in some time. How is it that in the U.S.A., church goers are the most likely to deny the teaching and commands of the one they claim to follow? The U.S. churches are becoming the most anti-christian organizations around. Whatever became of "love your enemy?" "Do good to those who hate you?" "Lose you life for my sake?" "Do not be overcome by evil but overcome evil with good?"
It seems the anti-christ has mounted the pulpit and the sheep are devoured by wolves. We need a national year of repentance. (A day won't do.)
Read: Survey: Support for terror suspect torture differs among the faithful and weep.
Sunday, April 12, 2009
Wednesday, April 01, 2009
"It would be wonderful one day to meet an American whose God has made his life harder, not easier."
—Leon Wieseltier, commenting on Barack Obama's statement about people clinging to religion out of economic frustration (New Republic, May 7).
-- From the June 3, 2008 Century Marks, The Christian Century
Monday, March 30, 2009
The Republican's definition of "bipartisanship" is "you buy everything we propose or we part company."
Their idea of compromise is "we both state our positions, you capitulate, and we proceed with our ideas."
They sing a different song now that they don't have a slim majority.
Sunday, March 29, 2009
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
There are fools and there are fools. Judging from this article, South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford is one of them. Bush's heavy handed power grabbing security policies and military intervention more closely resemble the destructive actions of Mugabe. The land grab had nothing to do with economic policy. It was geared to destruction of political opposition and enriching supporters -- like Bush Republicans loved to do. Obama has more affinity with Tsvangirai, a former trade union leader, who seeks to help the working man rather than the overlords of society.
From Jessica Yellin
COLUMBIA, South Carolina (CNN) — The United States faces a Zimbabwe-style economic collapse if it keeps “spending a bunch of money we don’t have,” South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford said Wednesday.
Sanford, a Republican, has been a critic of the Obama administration’s $800 billion stimulus plan. He said he’ll turn down about a quarter of his state’s $2.8 billion share unless Washington lets him use that money to pay down debt.
“What you’re doing is buying into the notion that if we just print some more money that we don’t have and send it to different states, we’ll create jobs,” he said. “If that’s the case, why isn’t Zimbabwe a rich place?” Zimbabwe has been in the throes of an economic meltdown ever since the southern African nation embarked on a chaotic land reform program. Its official inflation rate topped 11 million percent in 2008, with its treasury printing banknotes in the trillion-dollar range to keep up with the plummeting value of its currency.
But with South Carolina’s unemployment rate now at 10.4 percent — the second-highest in the country — state lawmakers will attempt to override Sanford and take the $700 million if he turns it down, Lt. Gov. Andre Bauer said.
Thursday, February 12, 2009
Recently my uncle saw an old friend panhandling on the street corner. This old friend had been quite successful, but hard drink and bad judgement had him homeless and hungry. He asked my uncle for some money to buy some food. My uncle wanted to help so he offered to give him some if he promised not to use the money to buy alcohol. The agreement was made and the money changed hands.
A short time later my uncle passed by again and saw the old friend quickly emptying a fifth of whiskey down his throat. My uncle was angry and confronted his former friend. "You promised not to use the money I gave you to buy alcohol!"
"I didn't use the money you gave me to buy this whisky!" replied the increasingly inebriated man. "I used your money to buy a burger. I bought this with the money I had been saving."
My uncle is Uncle Sam and his friend is the Wall Street banking establishment. When poor people use their existing resources to buy big screen TVs or such luxuries and then ask for public assistance to obtain food and housing, most hard working people are outraged. One must first use one's own resources to provide for the necessities of life. It is only when all of one's resources are insufficient that one can ask for help.
Does not the same principle apply to big business? Shouldn't the excessively remunerated executive have an obligation to reduce his own wage before depriving the industrious worker of his job? Shouldn't executive perks be eliminated before the business is driven into bankruptcy? Shouldn't a business cut ALL possible unnecessary expenses before asking for government assistance?
We must not limit our focus to the excesses of greedy CEOs. The boards of governors of these irresponsibly led companies must also be called to account. Shareholders must demand better management of their investments or replace these overcompensated incompetents.
Perhaps a good way to measure the relative value of workers and executives at a business would be the following: Let the executive officers stay away from work for 1 month and see the impact on the business. Let the hourly wage workers stay away for 1 week and see the impact. Whichever group's absence has the greatest impact should receive the greatest compensation. I doubt that those currently getting multi-million dollar bonuses will be missed. In fact, their assistants will probably do a better job in their absence.