Monday, March 31, 2008

I'm flying out to Reno NV tomorrow morning for a diversity workshop. Will be back Friday evening.

I have a blog friend, Jennifer, who has two lovely autistic grandkids, maya and kurtis. She will be participating in a walk to cure autism. If you wish to support this worthy cause here is a link to her personal fundraising page. we are for maya and kurtis

Peace and I'll see you all at the end of the week.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Romans 13 and Immigration (by Dr. M. Daniel Carroll Rodas)

The United States prides itself on being a country of laws. There is the settled conviction that here citizens obey the laws of the land and that those who do not are duly punished according to the nature of the violation. Christians who oppose the presence of undocumented immigrants turn to Romans 13 to emphasize that these people are breaking local and national laws and that the appropriate penalties should be applied. This passage is a quandary, too, for some of those who are more sympathetic to the plight of immigrants. They are torn between the harshness and contradictions of the laws and this biblical mandate to submit to the authorities.

Several observations can help put this passage into proper perspective. To begin with, Christians must recognize that their agenda is set in the previous chapter of Paul's letter. Chapter 12 tells believers not to be molded by the "pattern of this world" (12:2). Their lives should be characterized by service to others, love, and compassion—even toward enemies (12:3-21).

The authorities, however, have a different purpose and a different way of doing things, and this is spelled out in Romans 13. Christians are called to respect the government, says the apostle, but this does not mean sanctifying everything that it might legislate or do. Citizens of the U.S. have the right to disagree with the government, and, motivated by their principles, Christians do this in multiple ways: at the ballot box, through publications, by organizing educational, legal, and civic organizations that defend other points of view, by participating in peaceful protests of many kinds for a host of causes, and the like. Each of these actions in its own way expresses reservations about the state of affairs and the things that the government is mandating. Immigration is an example of an area where many believers diverge from the goals and enforcement of current legislation.

What is more, the U.S. government itself admits that legislation on immigration must be changed. Leaders from across the political spectrum recognize that what is in place now is not working. Recent efforts to craft a comprehensive immigration policy are clear evidence of the need for new immigration laws.

Therefore, to point to Romans 13 and adherence to the law in debates on immigration, without nuance or biblical and historical depth, simply will not do. Christians should search all of the scriptures for guidance in evaluating the development of immigration policy and engaging its challenges. From that foundation, Christians can begin to move forward to the legal issues. In other words, discussion on legality cannot be limited just to questions about complying with current laws, laws that all know are impractical and will soon be replaced. If these laws are problematic—theologically, humanely, and pragmatically—and if all sides agree that reform is needful, the call to submit to the authorities in Romans 13 should be rethought in fresh and constructive ways. Respect for the nation's present laws can be coupled with and informed by the move toward a new set of laws. Ideally, laws should embody the best moral principles of a nation. Clearly, immigration legislation does not measure up.

But what of immigrants who are Christians? How do they respond to Romans 13? They know that they are violating the law by living and working here. But, they also have experienced personally the law's inequities. For example, the government turns a blind eye to many employers because the country needs cheap labor, but then it makes access to social services increasingly difficult for these same workers. Hispanic immigrant believers admire the efficiency of the legal system of the U.S. and want to contribute to society, even as they work for a better life. Many do their best to obey the laws in every area that does not threaten their jobs, homes, and children's education and welfare. Many desire to be model 'citizens' as part of their Christian duty and in order to gain the respect of the majority culture in which they live. All fervently want a fair legal resolution of the situation.

Where can we go from here? If one evaluates immigration law in the U.S. as confused and unfair, and if one believes that these laws do not square with the teaching of the Bible and the ethical demands of the heart of God - let alone the historic openness of this country to foreigners - then these Christians will not say, "What is it about 'illegal' that you don't understand?" Instead, they might declare with the apostles, "Judge for yourselves whether it is right in God's sight to obey you rather than God" (Acts 4:19).

Before this statement raises all kinds of alarm, let me make it very clear that I am not advocating civil disobedience on a large scale, just as most Christians who have strong misgivings about undocumented immigrants are not lobbying for a massive national deportation operation to rid the country of one and all. It is a narrow understanding of the nature of law and the Christian's relationship to human government that must be questioned. We need to move ahead towards constructive change with Christian humility and charity, with respect for those placed in authority over us but especially with an eye to the higher calling of the people of God to be a blessing to the world.

Dr. M. Daniel Carroll Rodas is a distinguished professor of Old Testament at Denver Seminary, and author of Christians at the Border: Immigration, the Church, and the Bible (Baker Academic Books), from which this post is adapted.

Jesus for president

I love what this guy, Shane Claiborne, has to say in his books. I loved his first book Irresistible Revolution.

Book Review: Jesus for President (Part 1)

Shane Claiborne and Chris Haw condemn the church's adulterous affair with political power.

We are seeing more and more that the church has fallen in love with the state and that this love affair is killing the church’s imagination. The powerful benefits and temptations of running the world’s largest superpower have bent the church’s identity. Having power at its fingertips, the church often finds “guiding the course of history” a more alluring goal than following the crucified Christ. Too often the patriotic values of pride and strength triumph over the spiritual virtues of humility, gentleness, and sacrificial love.

As you can tell, subtlety is not what Shane Claiborne and Chris Haw were aiming for when they co-wrote, Jesus for President. Apart from the provocative content—a mix of stories, biblical narrative, and political manifesto—even the look of the book provokes a reaction. The pages are filled with photography, artwork, doodles, and strange typesetting. Some will appreciate the book’s creative format and others will find the style too different—not unlike the authors themselves.

link to full article

Sunday, March 30, 2008

I just got out of the shower after unpacking the car and doing a few loads of laundry. I left a bit earlier than the rest of the group due to the fact that I had some stuff to do. I work tomorrow and then fly out to Reno NV Tuesday morning.

Anyhow, I was catching up on my email and checking some blogs and I came across this little snippet from Jonathan Falwell. commenting on a speech Obama made in North Carolina.

Was Jesus a liar?

Posted: March 29, 20081:00 am Eastern© 2008

There are a lot of Jewish people who are just as moral, or even more moral than I am. There are a lot of Muslims who are decent, good, kind people. I don't think they are any less children of God.
– Presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama, during a speech this week in Greensboro, N.C.

I find the first part of Sen. Obama's recent statement to be quite reasonable. In fact, I don't believe that Christians have cornered the market on decency. (If you don't believe me, try reading some of my e-mails or taking a few of my phone calls!)

The problem I have with Obama's statement is that he was implying that these qualities – goodness and decency and kindness – make us children of God and serve as a means to heaven.


My comments:
I believe that we are ALL children of God.

I see no mention of a "means to heaven" in the little quote from Obama.

Therefore...Falwell is putting words in Obama's mouth.


Friday, March 28, 2008

Stop trying to work things out before their times have come. Accept the limitations of living one day at a time. When something comes to your attention, ask Me whether or not it is part of today's agenda. If it isn't, release it into My care and go on about today's duties. When you follow this practice, there will be a beautiful simplicity about your life: a time for everything, and everything in its time.

A life lived close to Me is not complicated or cluttered. When your focus is on My Presence, many things that once troubled you lose their power over you. Though the world around you is messy and confusing, remember that I have overcome the world. I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have Peace.

Ecclesiastes 3:1
John 16:33

(Sarah Young, Jesus Calling-Devotions for every day of the year)

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Busy, but doing well!

I've been on the dayshift all week this week and am 100% recovered from the bronchitis I had. It took a good week to get totally over it. Two others in my office have had it and it has taken the same amount of time to get over it.

We went out to eat last night with J and Jen. It was wonderful to see them again. We had not seen them since we left Amadeo but it was great catching up with them and just fellowshipping with them.

Tonight I'll be helping Obie and Leo out at the Gilbert Drop-In Center. Patty and I will also be attending Pastor Mark and Bonnie Morgan's Community Life Group held on the 2nd and 4th Wednesday of each month. We are really excited about joining this group. We should have started last night, but we had already scheduled out dinner date with J and Jen. So our first time with the group will be April 9th.

I work days tomorrow, then we're off to the orphanage in Mexico right after work. We'll come back Sunday night. Then it's work Monday and off to Reno NV Tuesday morning with Leslie for a Diversity Conference. She is the Diversity Focal Point in our office and I am the Union Steward so I get to go too. We fly out Tuesday and come back Friday evening.

I won't be blogging much next week so I hope you all have a wonderful week and I'll catch up when I get back from Reno.


As easy as it is for those of us who are white to look back and say, "That's a terrible statement," I grew up in a very segregated South, and I think that you have to cut some slack. And I'm going to be probably the only conservative in America who's going to say something like this, but I'm just telling you: We've got to cut some slack to people who grew up being called names, being told, "You have to sit in the balcony when you go to the movie. You have to go to the back door to go into the restaurant. And you can't sit out there with everyone else. There's a separate waiting room in the doctor's office. Here's where you sit on the bus." And you know what? Sometimes people do have a chip on their shoulder and resentment. And you have to just say, I probably would too. I probably would too. In fact, I may have had ... more of a chip on my shoulder had it been me.

- Mike Huckabee, offering his perspective on the preaching of Rev. Jeremiah Wright. (Source: MSNBC)

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

everything must change: what's it about?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Pastor Brett Younger Stays

The members have voted and Pastor Brett stays. God is smiling I am sure. This Pastor was only showing unconditional love and in my opinion, did the right thing.

UPDATE: The saga continues at Broadway Baptist Church in Fort Worth, Texas. After controversy erupted over whether or not to feature gay couples in the church's 125th anniversary photo directory, a group of members attempted to oust pastor Brett Younger for leading the church in a liberal direction. They collected enough signatures to force the issue to a vote. But on March 9 the congregation voted to retain Younger. The vote was 499 to 237, giving the pastor a two-thirds majority. “We respect the will of the majority and pray for the congregation's healing,” Robert Saul, spokesman for the group that organized against Younger. But Saul warned of other consequences: “300 members have or want to leave because of the turmoil.” [, 3/10/08]

Monday, March 24, 2008

Jay Jay French and Friends - I Want Barack

Obama in 2008!

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Christian Fundamentalists

From the book I spoke about yesterday:

The problem with many Christian fundamentalists is that they are not fundamentalist enough when it comes to Jesus. Please understand, whenever the Christian church has become violent or intolerant or just plain uncharitable, it is not because of a fundamentalist adherence to the teachings of Jesus, but precisely the opposite. It is because Christ's teachings have been patently ignored. Many Christian fundamentalists do not follow Christ, but have replaced his teachings with the prevailing conservative ethos of the day masquerading as religious dogma.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Taxes are done!

You gotta love TurboTax man! I finished the Federal and State returns today and have already sent them electronically. We are getting back money from both. Plus we're getting $1200 from the "Bush Stimulus Deal". Yeah! My bet is it will NOT stimulate the economy and in fact cost the USA a lot more in handing out the cash. But, I'll take it and share it with the orphanage.

I bought a book today written by Bruxy Cavey who is the teaching pastor of The Meeting House, "a church for people who aren't into church", in the Greater Toronto Area. It sounds like it will be a great read and is for those that are sick of religion, but instead want to be like Jesus and follow His ways.

I love the newest translation of the Bible called The Message. In the preface of the book it says this...

Read these words of Jesus slowly and thoughtfully to see if they resonate with you:

"Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you'll recover your life. I'll show you how to take a real test. Walk with me and work with me - watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you'll learn to live freely and lightly." (Matthew 11:28-30, MSG)

If you're bogged down by rules, regulations, legalism and church politics...

Step back and breathe. Turn to the Father and He will walk you through it. Follow His lead and you can't go wrong.

Happy Easter everyone. Enjoy your family and friends. Encourage one another, don't drag people down.


Friday, March 21, 2008

Gov Bill Richardson endorses Obama

NM Gov. Bill Richardson Endorses Obama

A possible Obama/Richardson ticket? I surely hope so. :-)

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

He Will Not Be Pinned Down

We may observe that the teaching of Our Lord Himself, in which there is no imperfection, is not given us in that cut-and-dried, fool-proof, systematic fashion we might have expected or desired. He wrote no book. We have only reported sayings, most of them uttered in answer to questions, shaped in some degree by their context. And when we have collected them all we cannot reduce them to a system. He preaches but He does not lecture. He uses paradox, proverb, exaggeration, parable, irony; even (I mean no irreverence) the "wisecrack". He utters maxims which, like popular proverbs, if rigorously taken, may seem to contradict one another. His teaching therefore cannot be grasped by the intellect alone, cannot be "got up" as if it were a "subject". If we try to do that with it, we shall find Him the most elusive of teachers. He hardly ever gave a straight answer to a a straight question. He will not be, in the way we want, "pinned down". The attempt is (again, I mean no irreverence) like trying to bottle a sunbeam.
Yes, it is, perhaps, idle to speak here of spirit and letter. There is almost no "letter" in the words of Jesus. Taken by a literalist, He will always prove the most elusive of teachers. Systems cannot keep up with that darting illumination. No net less wide than a man's whole heart, nor less fine of mesh than love, will hold the sacred Fish.

~C.S. Lewis, Reflections on the Psalms, Chapter XI "Scripture" (1958)

Obama will survive this

I sincerely think that Barack Obama will get through this latest attack on him. He was not the one preaching these sermon's, Wright was. I would even bet money on this fact, many people that attend church have heard something that they disagree with from the pulpit, yet still attend that church.

Here's a quote from Jonathan Alter and you can read the entire article here.

But history will give him this: Barack Obama didn't simply touch the touchiest subject in America, he grabbed it and turned it over and examined it from several different angles and made it personal. Just steps from Independence Hall in Philadelphia, he rang the bell hard and well.

Speak words of encouragement instead of tearing others down

I have really been enjoying the daily devotions in the devotional Jesus Calling by Sarah Young. It is written in the first person as Father God speaking to you. Here is todays entry. It really encouraged me and I hope it does you too.

I speak to you from the depths of your being. Hear Me saying soothing words of Peace, assuring you of My Love. Do not listen to voices of accusation, for they are not from Me. I speak to you in lovetones, lifting you up. My Spirit convicts cleanly, without crushing words of shame. Let the Spirit take charge of your mind, combing out tangles of deception. Be transformed by the truth that I live within you.

The Light of My Presence is shining upon you, in benedictions of Peace. Let My Light shine in you; don't dim it with worries or fears. Holiness is letting Me live through you. Since I dwell in you, you are fully equipped to be holy. Pause before responding to people or situations, giving My Spirit space to act through you. Hasty words and actions leave no room for Me; this is atheistic living. I want to inhabit all your moments-gracing your thoughts, words, and behavior.

Romans 8:1-2 (The Message)

The Solution Is Life on God's Terms

1-2With the arrival of Jesus, the Messiah, that fateful dilemma is resolved. Those who enter into Christ's being-here-for-us no longer have to live under a continuous, low-lying black cloud. A new power is in operation. The Spirit of life in Christ, like a strong wind, has magnificently cleared the air, freeing you from a fated lifetime of brutal tyranny at the hands of sin and death.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

The Jesus Testimony

I found this over on Bill Dahl's website

Enjoy it. I thought it was great writing.

The Congressional Testimony of Jesus Christ – U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee Hearings on U.S. Immigration Reform – Special Session
By Bill Dahl


Once again, the voice of the Christian God is being muted by the fear-laden adrenal reactions of our elected officials in Washington D.C., who claim the name of Christ, yet deny the application of His Gospel, when confronted with the choice of satisfying special interests, or implementing our God’s clear teachings on the matter at hand.

Senate Majority leader Bill Frist introduced his own immigration reform Bill this past week, S. 2454 entitled Securing America's Borders Act (He could have titled it the “Liberty and Justice For All Act,” but that’s really not what this fellow has in mind). However, the provisions in the Frist bill are nearly identical to the bill under discussion as put forth by Senate Judiciary Chairman Arlen Specter.

Instead of triumphantly dispensing relief from oppression, Congress is hell-bent on implementing punitive, enforcement-based public policy. This effort runs completely contrary to the biblical mandate to provide relief and comfort to the oppressed. The voice of this effort is distinctly protectionist, defensive, exclusionary and will serve only to create more victims of poorly integrated national public policy. Once again, man remains the biggest conundrum for those who claim the name of Christ and those who profess that the United States was founded and rests upon the application of biblical principles, tenets of the Christian faith.

Enter Jesus:

Jesus: “Father, I know what we’ve said. However, enough is enough. I’ve got to make a physical appearance in the U.S. Senate to straighten some things out.”

God the Father: “Son, do what you must. When you make your appearance on the Senate floor, do you need Me to bellow: “This is my Son, whom I love; with Him I am well pleased.” (1)

Jesus: “Yes Father. It probably wouldn’t hurt.” God The Father: “Go with My blessing. Return as soon as your work is completed.”

Listen up!

As the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee hearings on U.S. immigration reform had concluded for the day, Chairman Specter had asked the Senate Committee members to remain in room 226 of the Dirksen Senate office Building where the Committee’s hearings are held. Senate staff, the media and the public had left. Security had locked the main entrance to the Hearing room. The Senators were alone and tired after a very long, raucous debate.

As they discussed various points from the day’s testimony, Senator Feinstein exclaimed in a loud voice, “Excuse me sir! This is a closed session for Committee Members only. How did you get in here? You’ll have to leave immediately.”

Jesus adjusts the witness microphone in front of Him and says, “It’s my pleasure to be here this afternoon. I only require a few minutes of your time.”

Senator Kennedy interrupts and shouts, “Who are you!”

A Voice instantly fills the Senate chamber boldly proclaiming, “This is my Son, whom I love. With Him I am well pleased. Listen to Him!”(2)

Senator Hatch faints at hearing the voice of God.

Senator Biden is speechless with a tear running down his left cheek. The rest of the Judiciary Committee members are slumped, trembling, whimpering in their seats frantically fidgeting and worriedly throwing “Is it really Him?” back and forth at one another.

The Opening Exchange

Senator Specter raps his gavel. In a voice crackling with emotion, he pulls his microphone toward him and flips the switch to tape the testimony. He says, “I hereby call this special session of the United States Senate Judiciary Committee into special session. Please state your name and occupation for the record.”

Jesus: “My name is Jesus Christ. I am the Son of God.”

Senator Specter: “And why are You here today?”

Jesus: “I am here to provide you with testimony on what you must do for My children who are presently oppressed by your current immigration policies.”

Senator Specter: “Jesus, this is a very complex issue. It is one that gets citizens, schools, healthcare providers, social service agencies and undocumented immigrants alike all worked up. It’s taxing all the limited resources of this nation. People are fed up. I can assure you that we are trying to do the right thing for all concerned. I’m sure you too will be pleased with the outcome as well.”

Jesus: “I’m not so sure about that Senator.”

Senator Kennedy sheepishly leans forward and asks, “Why’s that?”

Jesus: “ Senator Specter’s response “makes you wonder if you have fashioned a gospel around your culture, technology and social economy rather than around the person of Christ.”(3)

Senator Feinstein: “It’s more complicated than that. Most of these undocumented immigrants are viewed as aliens, strangers, a danger and a burden to many communities. There’s a lot of animosity directed toward them. This animosity lives within each of our respective constituencies. These are voters!”

All Senators nod in agreement with Senator Feinstein’s comments.

Jesus: “If you hate someone because they are different from you, you’d best get on your knees until you can say you love them, until you have gotten your soul right with Christ.”(4)

Senators Feingold, Durbin, Schumer. Graham, Brownback, Coburn, Sessions, Cole, DeWine and Kyl rise from their seats visibly shaken. They move to the area in between the Senators seated above them and the witness table. They crumble to their knees, heads buried in their hands, weeping.

Senator Leahy: “Jesus, who do You think is to blame for this conundrum we find ourselves in?”

Jesus: “The entire world is falling apart because nobody will admit they are wrong. But by asking God to forgive you, you are willing to own your own crap.” (5)

Senator Grassley: “We take our commitment to apply Christian principles to our nation’s public policy very seriously. Our postmodern world is complex. So is our democracy. It’s much more difficult today to be a Christian, particularly as an elected official. Don’t get me wrong. I’m a believer.”

Jesus: “What I believe is not what I say I believe; what I believe is what I do.”(6) As it relates to the legislation before this Committee, maybe it’s time to get real rather than continue along the path of attempting to satisfy those who have the most money, a well-oiled PR machine and/or claim My Name. “Maybe we don’t need a new, improvised version of what already hasn’t worked in the past.” (7)

Criminals & Lawbreakers:

Senator Biden: “To become an undocumented immigrant in this, or any other nation, one must break the law. To many of our citizens, all the arguments begin and end with this one fact. How do you respond to this?

Jesus: “Your nation has become one when “you are not worrying about deadly diseases, you worry about homicidal strangers.”(8) How many times do I have to repeat myself? “Don’t be afraid!”(9) Your people are more concerned about dieing in a plane crash than they are about dieing from heart disease, as they sit in their seats eating a sack of doughnuts, waiting for take-off.

You are a nation that is mixed-up. As I have said, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”(10)

“When the Kingdom is our treasure we switch from hoarding to giving. When we focus on Kingdom priorities we liberally share our wealth. And in the process we not only restore and liberate the poor but also ourselves. We free ourselves from anxiety and the bondage of worry.”(11)

“Citizenship means looking out for one’s neighbors and giving a hand to those less fortunate. But it also means understanding the big issues of one’s times, seeing past the hype and spin, and working together to hold political leaders accountable.”(12) That’s why I’m here today. Your priorities are all mixed up. I’m here to speak on behalf of undocumented immigrants who are afraid to speak up.

“Criminals, lawbreakers, potential terrorists and economic burdens,” these are all stereotypes that hard-hearted people have drummed up to demonize, exclude and oppress millions of My children in this nation. As I have said, “Be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known. What you have said in the dark will be heard in the daylight, and what you have whispered in the ear in the inner rooms will be proclaimed from the roofs.”(13)

Those who characterize undocumented immigrants in your nation like this, ask them, "If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone.” (14)

Economic Burden:

Chairman Specter: “I fully appreciate what You have just testified about. However, this illegal immigration problem has become a significant economic burden for this nation. How do you respond to that?

Jesus: “Economic factors do powerfully shape the way you look at things. Salary, the income of your friends, the value of your house, and your social status – all these factors shape your thinking. They provide a set of lenses that alter your view of the world. You cling to theological beliefs that support and legitimate your economic status. Financial factors filter your Bible reading and tint your religious lenses so your beliefs conveniently support your economic lifestyles.”(15)

“You typically don’t have any problem counting money in this country. Yet, when the equation involves people, that’s when the math gets murky. Unfortunately, you have developed a tendency to forget how to count people accurately when it comes to socio-political issues. It really boils down to counterfeit counting or, counting only the folks that somebody defines as worth counting, the ones that truly matter. The figures you throw around depend upon the position you are attempting to support. This is what I refer to as arbitrary arithmetic or arbithmetic: the rules for counting change depending upon the reason underlying your count. Whether people count or not is dependent upon some pre-defined subjective definition that somebody makes up.

We have arrived at a critical juncture in our world that demands that we revisit the madness of our arbithmetic, as characterized by the following author: “The first step is to measure whatever can be easily counted. This is OK as far as it goes. The second step is to disregard that which can’t be easily measured or to give it an arbitrary quantitative value. This is artificial and misleading. The third step is to presume that which can’t be measured easily really isn’t important. This is blindness. The fourth step is to say that which can’t be easily measured really doesn’t exist. This is suicide.” (16)

Perhaps it’s time to heed the words of the psalmist when he wrote, “Blessed is the man whose sin the LORD does not count against him and in whose spirit is no deceit.”(17) It’s time to re-examine the deceit we’ve come to accept within your math from a moral and spiritual standpoint.

Spurred on by the relentless pursuit of prosperity and the ruthless defense of what you already have in the name of economic progress, The U.S. has become comfortable with diminishing the sacred value of each child of Mine to an economic cost. Faces, names and souls have been replaced with dollar signs denoting their perceived contribution to, or detraction from the burgeoning global economy.

It’s at this juncture that you must face the fact that you have marginalized My Children in your world. You have erected idols commissioned with prayers for His blessing of abundance. The shadows from these idols obscure your view of the poor, the needy, the displaced, the undocumented immigrant and the refugee. In our nations economic calculations, these people, My children, have become costs, economic burdens without faces or voices. Their needs continue to be diminished, overlooked and devalued in state and congressional policy deliberations, as well as in the individual and collective hearts of those who claim to be Disciples of Mine.

When you define people as costs that require containment and/or elimination, you elevate the pedestals that proudly support the idols of efficiency, self-determination, self-righteousness and patriotic fervor. You add a backdrop adorned with subtly subdued, fear-laden images and a swatch of scarcity designed to remind everyone that they might risk losing what they have if they don’t go along with the proposed formula for this nation’s future. Yes, this is the calculation you have arrived at for becoming the greatest nation on the face of this planet.”(18)

“We must never overlook the fact that the message of the Bible is above all a message preached to the poor, the burdened, the oppressed, the underprivileged.” (19)

The Children of Undocumented Immigrants:

Jesus: “There is one thing that particularly troubles me about the ongoing immigration reform deliberations before this Committee.”

Senator Kennedy: “Yes, and what might that be?”

Jesus: “Where’s the discussion about the kids?" Jesus wipes the tears from his eyes.

Senator Kennedy: “Please proceed.”

Jesus: “One critically important dimension of the Mexodus issue your Committee is charged with addressing is the well-being of the children of undocumented Mexican immigrants living in the U.S. I will refer to these innocent children here as ‘Chillegals.’ Most of these children, My children, began their journey to your country as infants, wrapped in blankets, and coddled in the arms of their parents as they made their way across the border.

As it relates to the plight of the millions of Chillegals residing in the U.S., these infants and children never had the capacity to consent or dissent to the actions taken by their parents. Yet, you hold them responsible and oppress them, based upon the immoral treatment afforded them under current public policy. This is Victimmigration: The ongoing oppression of infants and children of illegal Mexican immigrants in the U.S.” (20)

I beg you Senators, as I have said before, may it guide you today, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these."(21) May the outcome of your deliberations provide them with an immediate path to citizenship.

The Opportunity:

“You see, from a purely historical standpoint, the plight of undocumented Hispanic immigrants residing in the U.S. can be accurately characterized by the term Hispurgatory: A moment in U.S. history when the resident, undocumented Latino immigrant population is caught in a state of legal limbo. Their standard of living is typically well below the official poverty level. Their daily existence is one of endurance and survival. They are motivated by the hope that their service to this country as upstanding, creative, contributing, law abiding residents will be rewarded someday with legitimate, official acceptance by the government of this, your Promised Land.

For these Latinos, the hope for citizenship in the U.S. is heaven. Visions of better jobs, education, healthcare, housing, protections against discrimination, racism, the ability to be all one can be, to contribute to the United States economy and culture on an equal footing…these are the elements of their hope. The country they departed was, at least, economically oppressive. If the prospects for a better life for their families in their country of origin was without hope, then, that is hell. Hope led them here. Hope keeps them here. They hope that you will awaken from your self-righteous indignation and accept them formally into this, the Promised Land. Until then, they remain among you, their lives suspended precariously between a worldly heaven and hell, in a state of Hispurgatory.” (22)

“I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.” (23)

A voice booms through the chamber: “The same law applies to the native-born and to the alien living among you!"(24) “Administer true justice; show mercy and compassion to one another. Do not oppress the widow or the fatherless, the alien or the poor.” (25)

Jesus: “Thank You Father.”

Concluding Testimony:

Chairman Specter: Could You succinctly summarize your testimony for us today?
Jesus: “Of course. I’ll be glad to. The words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. uttered some 40 years ago are particularly appropriate for your nation in 2006: “There is a certain bitter irony in the picture of this country championing freedom in foreign lands and failing to ensure that freedom to twenty million of its own.” It is time to confront the truth that current misguided patriotic fervor has infected your discussion of U.S. immigration policy reform to the detriment of this nation’s soul, and your future. The character of the future of this nation is being formed today. It’s time to make amends. It’s time to take the first step in the right direction. Come on Congress! Craft legislation that provides an immediate path to citizenship for the millions of My children, your brothers and sisters.

You hold the hose of hope in your own hands. My prayer is that you will take your foot off the hose and water the parched soul of this nation. You must trust that God shall create a bountiful harvest, which will contribute to the nourishment of the soul of this country for generations to come.” (27)

The Senators look up from frantically jotting notes.

Chairman Specter speaks in astonishment: “He’s gone!”

Senator Feinstein: “I’m not so sure about that.”

Senator Biden: Wow! Do we have our work cut out for us now or what! Somebody call Bill Frist and tell him it’s not going to be as easy as building a border fence and designing a guest worker permit program. It is clear from the testimony we heard this evening that “Being a Christian isn’t just believing in God and being good. It involves a commitment to change the world. Christians are expected to be part of a movement that will make the world that is, into the world that ought to be.”(28) Let’s get on with it shall we?


Do we trust Him America?

It’s about us America, not them.

“The world is watching us. They are watching and wondering whether we will be different.” (29)

“We are not to ignore the homeless, the helpless, the disenfranchised. Entrepreneurial faith is not given so we personally can have more, but so that we can give more to others.” (30)

The choice is ours. The consequences are eternal.

+ Click here to urge your senators to promote compassionate immigration reform
Author’s Note: The quotations used in this article do not represent the opinions of the respective authors cited on U.S. immigration policy reform. They are used solely by this author to make a pertinent point raised in the subject matter addressed herein and may be deemed as used out of context. There is no more difficult task that those faced everyday by our nations elected officials. I pray for them daily and remain non-partisan. I admire the dedication and sacrifice of these public servants. This admiration includes the members of the Senate Judiciary Committee.The expressed purpose of this fictional account of testimiony before the Senate Judiciary Committe was crafted to put a voice on the interaction that Christ might have on the issues raised herein. I do not speak for God. However, creative writing of this nature is solely intended to cause a us all to pause, imagine and contemplate the issues that arise in the arena of Christian faith and national, public policy. I can assure you that I beg your forgiveness if I have insulted any reader, in any way. Please forgive me.

About the Author:

Bill is a freelance writer. Bill and his wife worked for several years with Hispanic young adults ages 14-22. This particular neighborhood in Santa Ana, CA that is considered to be one of the most densely populated areas in the United States. The area is well known for its high crime rate, gang activity, drug activity, violence and devastating poverty. Their work focuses on enhancing the lives of children, teens, young adults and their families residing in this area by working together to make their dreams and hopes a reality.

Bill is published in numerous professional publications, magazines, websites, newspapers and newsletters. He is the author of several manuscripts, presently under consideration for publication. Bill earned a Bachelors and Masters degree at Washington State University.

You can enjoy Bill’s writing on his website(s) at and For reprint permission, Contact Bill at

Bibliography - NOTES
1. Matthew 3:17
2. Matthew 5:5
3. Miller, Donald, J. Searching For God Knows What, Thomas Nelson Publishing, Nashville, TN Copyright 2004 by Donald Miller, p. 156.
4. Miller, Donald, J. Searching For God Knows What, Thomas Nelson Publishing, Nashville, TN Copyright 2004 by Donald Miller, p.190
5. Miller, Donald, J. Blue Like Jazz – Nonreligious Thoughts on Christian Spirituality, Thomas Nelson Publishing, Nashville, TN Copyright 2003 by Donald Miller, p.53.
6. Miller, Donald, J. Blue Like Jazz – Nonreligious Thoughts on Christian Spirituality, Thomas Nelson Publishing, Nashville, TN Copyright 2004 by Donald Miller, p.110.
7. Henderson, Jim a.k.a. “LOST” – Discovering Ways To Connect With The People Jesus Misses Most. Waterbrook Press, Colorado Springs, CO Copyright 2005 by James K. Henderson P. 31.
8. Glassner, Barry The Culture of Fear-Why Americans Are Afraid of the Wrong Things, Basisc Books – A Member of the Perseus Group, Copyright 1999 by Barry Glassner, p. Xiii.
9. Mark 6:50
10. Matthew 6:19-21
11. Kraybill, Donald B. The Upside Down Kingdom, Herald Press Copyright 1978 and 1990 by Herald Press, p. 110.
12. Peterson, Peter G. Running on Empty – How the Democratic and Republican Parties Are Bankrupting Our Future and What Americans Can Do About It, Farrar, Straus And Giroux, New York, NY Copyright 2004 by Peter G. Peterson p. 232
13. Luke 12:1-3
14. John 8:7
15. Kraybill, Donald B. The Upside Down Kingdom, Herald Press Copyright 1978 and 1990 by Herald Press, p. 104.
16. Handy, Charles The Age of Paradox Harvard Business School Press © 1994 p. 221
17. Psalm 32:2 – NIV
18. Dahl, Bill Count Me In – Why The Math Matters, 2005
19. Merton, Thomas. Seeds, SHAMBHALA, Boston © Copyright 2002 by Robert Inchauti p. 111.
20. Dahl, Bill Victimmigration, 2005
21. Matthew 19:14
22. Dahl, Bill Hispurgatory,, 2005
23. Matthew 25:45
24. Exodus 12:49
25. Zechariah 7: 9
26. Hoskins, Loette I Have a Dream – The Quotations of Martin Luther King, Jr. Gossett & Dunlap Publishers, Copyright © 1968 by Droke House Publishers, Inc. p.3
27. Dahl, Bill MexGen – Profiling the Paradox – 2005
28. Campolo, Tony. You Can Make a Difference-High Voltage Living in a Burned Out World, W Publishing Group Nashville, TN Ó Copyright 1984 by Anthony Campolo p. VIII
29. Burchett, Dave. When Bad Christians Happen to Good People, WaterBooks Press Colorado Springs, CO Ó Copyright 2002 by Dave Burchett p. 84.
30.Caldwell, Kirbyjon & Kallenstadt, Walt with Sorensen, Paul Entrepreneurial Faith – Launching Bold Initiatives to Expand God’s Kingdom, WaterBrook Press, A Division of Random House, Inc. Ó Copyright 2004 by Kirbyjon Caldwell, & Walt Kallenstadt, with Paul Sorensen, p. 20.

Monday, March 17, 2008

The verdict is in-I'm gonna live!

Saw the doctor today. His diagnosis was bronchitis with my left lung affected the most. He said it probably started off as the flu and progressively got worse. Anyhow, he gave me an antibiotic and said I should start feeling better in a couple of days. I sure hope so, because I feel like crapola at the moment.

Happy St. Patty's Day to you all. Today is my wife's birthday too. Gee, I wonder why they named her Patty!


Flogging Molly - Drunken Lullabies

Happy St. Patricks Day everyone. Be safe out there!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Breaking Down

So I have to break down and go to the doctor tomorrow. I just ain't getting any better folks. It's now in my chest and I'm making these funny wheezing sounds. My parents and grandmother came up to Phoenix this morning and went to church with us. We celebrated Patty's birthday (Tommorow the 17th) and Shannon's birthday (the 28th). I went to church and then we went out to eat. My appetite and everything else is fine. It's all the congestion in my head and chest that is killing me.

I'll go into the doctor tomorrow, they'll give me some antibiotics and then I should start feeling better in a day or two.

Peace and good health to all!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

The Trooper Iron Maiden Rock In Rio

Triple lead guitars, ya gotta love the Maiden!

Friday, March 14, 2008

14 - Iron Maiden - Iron Maiden

4 tix in Sec 203...row VV. Center and back a bit. Perfect for an Iron Maiden Show. Gary and Toria from VCCG going with us. May 26th is gonna be a special night my friends.

Under the weather

I have managed to stay pretty healthy this winter. My wife Patty was the one that struggled through flu and then pneumonia.

Wednesday I worked a dayshift and then we had a lead forecaster meeting that I had to attend at the end of the day because I am the Union Steward in our office. That meeting went fairly long. I think I started feeling bad right in that meeting. I just felt warm, kind of feverish and achy. I woke up Thursday with a head that felt like a balloon and no voice. I worked an evening shift and by the end of my shift I was toast.

So I now have three days off that I really can't enjoy because I feel like crap. Right now I am waiting for the Iron Maiden Tickets to go onsale. I have a password to join the presale today and that starts at 10 am...about 10 minutes from now. After I get them, I'm back to bed for the day. Hopefully I can nip this in the bud before Monday.


Thursday, March 13, 2008

They Love the Church but Not the Institution

This excerpt taken from article here.

What if we approached our mission with a similar philosophy: “man-max, institution-min”? This is not an anti-institutional philosophy of ministry any more than Honda is an anti-mechanical car manufacturer. It simply recognizes that people are both the instruments and objects of God’s mission in the world. Human beings are the vessels of his Spirit, not organizations or institutions. This would mean asking new questions when the church (the community of believers) seeks to advance the mission of the Gospel:

Not: How do we grow the institution?
But: How do we grow people?

Not: How do we motivate people to serve in the church/institution?
But: How do we equip people and release them to serve outside the church/institution?

Not: How do we convince more people to come?
But: How do we inspire more people to go?

Not: How many programs can the church start?
But: How many programs have other churches started that we can help support?

Not: How many people have a committed relationship with our institution?
But: How many people have a committed relationship with another brother or sister in Christ?

Not: How do we make people dependent on the institution for their growth?
But: How do we equip people to grow independent of the institution?

Not: How much revenue can the institution generate?
But: How much revenue can the institution give away?

Not: How many buildings, pastors, and programs are necessary for the institution to have maximum exposure in the community?
But: How few buildings, pastors, and programs are necessary for God’s people to have time and energy to engage the community?

How these questions are answered will vary from place to place and church to church. How the Spirit of God leads one community of believer to engage the mission will look different than another. I’m not attempting to prescribe a single institutional model as normative for all. What I’m trying to do is challenge the assumptions behind the pervasive belief that sees institutions rather than people as the vessels and instruments of God’s power in the world. Learning to think “man-max, institution-min” may be the first step toward becoming a truly missional, rather than institutional, community.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Rest in My Radiant Presence

From Sarah Young's devotional book Jesus Calling

The world around you seems to spin faster and faster, till everything is a blur. Yet there is a cushion of calm at the center of your life, where you live in union with Me. Return to this soothing Center as often as you can, for this is where you are energized: filled with My Love, Joy, and Peace.

The world is a needy place; do not go there for sustenance. Instead, come to Me; learn to depend on Me alone, and your weakness will become saturated with My Power. When you find your completeness in Me, you can help other people without using them to meet your own needs. Live in the Light of My Presence, and your light will shine brightly into the lives of others.

1 John 4:12 (The Message)

11-12My dear, dear friends, if God loved us like this, we certainly ought to love each other. No one has seen God, ever. But if we love one another, God dwells deeply within us, and his love becomes complete in us—perfect love!

A great trip South of the Border

We had a very nice trip this weekend to the orphanage. For me, it was a lot more relaxing than other trips due to the fact that it was just 4 of us, all adults, that went down.

The highlight for me was seeing the reunion between Patty and Dulce. You see, Dulce had run away about a couple of months ago and then was placed in the orphanage in Hermosillio which is more like a Mexican version of juvenile detention. She was coerced by some of the other older girls to run away. I had received an email from Hannah last week on Tuesday. She told me that Dulce was back and not to tell Patty as we wanted it to be a surprise. Patty and Dulce have a very special bond. It was so hard for me not to tell Patty about it, but I was able to keep my mouth shut and not tell anybody.

We got to Hannah's place about 10:30 pm Friday night. We chatted for a bit and then we all went to bed as we had to get up early the next morning for the boy's soccer game. We all got up and drove to the orphanage and the gate was locked. All of the kids came up and greeted us. We had to get Patty's attention away from the gate for Patty's surprise and Hannah did a great job of it. We got Dulce to the fence and Patty turned around and the reunion between them was tearful and BEAUTIFUL! They hugged and embraced through the fence and just cried and held each other for a good ten minutes. Patty told her never to do that again. We were going to attempt to locate her and visit her but now we do not have to do that. The gate was finally opened and we all went to the soccer game. I will announce a special surprise about Dulce in the near future but Patty and I first have to do some research and find a good mexican attorney.

I had a great time with Guadalupe this trip too. He had received a visit from his family since our previous visit and Hannah said it was a very nice visit with his mother, stepfather and siblings. He was beaten by his father or stepfather, I'm not sure which one yet but I will find out. That was why he was placed in the orphanage. Hannah said that his mother told her that he may be able to go back home in June. This too I will need to find out from the director of the orphanage.

Jen went down with us on this trip and the boys she sponsored had been placed back at home with their family. I think it was hard on her but at the same time, it is probably best for them to be with their family if it is deemed a safe environment for them. We are facing the same situation with Guadalupe.

Anthony was along on this trip with us too and Freddy was excited to spend all of his time with him. Freddy was upset and emotional because his best friend had left. So it was great that Anthony was there to hang out with him this weekend because Freddy adores Anthony.

I had a little mishap with the Ford Escape while we were there. Hannahs house has a gate that you have to open to enter her property. Well I was backing out when we were getting ready to leave. Patty opened the gate for me as I was backing out. She was holding the gate on the passenger side and I was using the passenger side mirror to check my clearance. I knew I had plenty of room on the drivers side. While I was rolling backwards and backing out slowly the drivers side gate was caught by the wind and slammed into the left front quarter panel, while I was moving. DAMMIT! It put a nice dent and scrape into the driver side quarter panel. Not frame damage or anything and nothing that will affect the operation or driving mechanisms. But it still pissed me off. Live and learn!

Hannah is doing okay. She had a very bad cough though. I told her to take care of herself. Pray for her in some decisions she needs to make and that God's will be done in each and every situation.


Thursday, March 06, 2008

If Jesus Walked Our Streets

Another great article on the Porpoise Diving Life site. This one was written by Carmen C. DiCello who has served as an associate and senior pastor, and he is currently both a public school teacher and an adjunct professor at Columbia Evangelical Seminary. He is the author of Why? Reflections on the Problem of Evil (2007) and Dangerous Blessing: The Emergence of a Postmodern Faith (2005). You can catch some of Carmen’s more recent thoughts at Notions (

If Jesus Walked Our Streets

By Carmen C. Dicello

For a number of years, it’s been common to ask, “What would Jesus do?” Actually, it is an important question and one we would all do well to consider. Of course it is proper to think through these matters, for he is the one we are supposed to be following. But, if he were here in the flesh, where would we be following him?

All this is good and fine, but I’m not entirely sure that some evangelicals would be happy with the answer.

If Jesus were walking our streets . . .

He would be more critical of those who are theologically on target than those who are not.

He would attend celebrations and drinking parties.

He would possibly provide the beer.

He would drink with the rest of us.

He would spent a good chunk of time with those whom the religiously “pure” had no time for.

He would interrupt some of our religious services by making unplanned announcements and controversial statements.

He would tell stories that were relevant and attractive but not always immediately clear.

He would spend a lot more time encouraging others to follow him than he would simply providing religious facts about himself.

He would live courageously yet humbling.

He would serve those who crossed his path.

He would rub shoulders with the outcasts of society.

He would demonstrate that theology is intended to be done in public and on the streets.

He would go places deemed objectionable by the moral standard-bearers of society.

He would make people feel both comfortable and uneasy.

He would violate some of the rules of the religious establishment.

He would desire to heal and not to hurt.

He would be compassionate every day.

He would be challenged (and in some cases hated) by the experts of our day.

He would probably cause a lot of us to wonder if he is truly the one he claimed to be.

He would keep his promises.

He would most likely be criticized by a good percentage of the media.

He would . . .

Quote of the Week

I think joy and sweetness and affection are a spiritual path. We're here to know God, to love and serve God, and to be blown away by the beauty and miracle of nature. You just have to get rid of so much baggage to be light enough to dance, to sing, to play. You don't have time to carry grudges; you don't have time to cling to the need to be right. (Emphasis mine)

- author Anne Lamott, in a recent interview. (Source: The Washington Times)

Going to see the kids

Tomorrow we will be going to the orphanage for the weekend. I can't wait. Those kids bless me more than you will ever know. I missed the last trip and it's been a couple of months since I have been down there. I always come back refreshed from the visits. Not too many folks going on this trip. Just Patty, myself, Anthony and Jen. It will also be good to see Hannah again and she allows us to stay at her house while we're down there.

I spoke to her for about 20 minutes on Tuesday. She was in Nogales AZ so the rates were a lot cheaper on her cell phone when she is on this side of the border. She is doing well.


Why the differences?

Fundamentalist, Traditionalist, Reformed, Emerging, Post-Modern, etc etc.

Why all the diffferences? Why all the arguing? I just don't get it. Why is it so hard for some to understand?

In my mind it boils down to the greatest commandment of all, love God with all your heart. The second greatest commandment is like it, love your neighbor as yourself.

What is so hard to understand about that? People try and get into their "doctrine" or "theology". They try to make it more difficult than it really should be.

Maybe you don't believe in God. But try loving your neighbor as yourself. If everyone did this the world would be a much better place and God would be smiling whether you believe in Him or not.

Just my thoughts. But it is not that difficult to understand. We need to think about that.


Sunday, March 02, 2008

Jesus Versus The System

I just received the March issue from The Porpoise Diving Life...which by the way I highly recommend. One of the articles in this issue was written by a guy named Glenn Hager. I'll cut and paste the article and also provide the link directly to that article. I totally agree with what he is saying in this article. Enjoy it! Peace be with you!

Jesus Versus the System by Glenn Hager

It is hard to imagine that someone could possibly repudiate anything as much Jesus did the Jewish religious system of the first century. He flat out hated that system, causing his ministry to be a huge confrontation between himself and the religious and the powerful. He condemned their brand of righteousness with the startling revelation that it wouldn’t allow them to be part of God’s kingdom. He reviled them for loving the limelight and he called them snakes and whitewashed tombs. He broke their rules… repeatedly. He hated the bondage of impossible regulations that they forced on people. He was more than annoyed at their scholarly arrogance that led them to analyze the minutiae, but miss the main point of scripture. He went out of his way to piss them off and outwitted them when they questioned him. He hung with everyone they said to avoid, including John, the biggest anti-establishment guy around. He harvested grain and healed people when he wasn’t supposed to. He went to parties with people he wasn’t supposed to and preferred the company of prostitutes, lepers, tax collectors, and whoever was on the religious leaders’ no-no list. He condemned their interpretation of the Old Testament law and added a whole new level of meaning to what they thought they already knew so well.

It’s not that Jesus was the ultimate hippie, but that he came to save people. The multi-facetted Gospel that Jesus proclaimed, included setting people free from the bondage of a religious system that misrepresented him and oppressed, rather than blessed its adherents. Religious leaders had become wealthy men of esteem who were on friendly terms with an oppressive government. Jewish worship and its festivals became opportunities for vending religious goods at unfair prices. They had no compassion for the poor and disenfranchised, but instead dispensed impossible demands and guilt to their followers. They had become ridiculous in their detailed, analytical interpretations of scripture, defaulting to a message of supporting their system, rather that seeking the kingdom of God.

How far has the apple fallen from the tree, two thousand years later? There is a church/religious system today in which being a good church member became equated with following Christ. It all became about the church system… allegiance to the church, funding the church, attending the programs of the church, the political influence of the church, and putting its leaders on a pedestal. Recently, a thorough and well-publicized mega church study revealed that all of that church stuff really wasn’t helping to be like Jesus or serve Jesus like we thought. Another study that became a book revealed that perceptions of the church and Christians among the younger generations were shockingly negative. When prophetic voices spoke about these issues using words that were as kind and measured as possible, they were told they were just angry, negative people and they shouldn’t speak poorly of God’s church.

I have to wonder, how we would respond to this crisis, if we were taking our cues from Jesus. I believe we would do more than speak words of concern about the system; we will forge a new system (or maybe it is a non system) of action. Jesus and his followers didn’t need to wait for permission to begin speaking of a new way of life and living it out, nor do we. Theirs was the way of discipleship that was built around life, friendships, and personal activity in ministry. Their new way had a special place for those the old way excluded… the disenfranchised and the common working man and woman. The teaching of the new way was built around the teaching of its leader and his interpretation of scripture. As his followers clustered together, they enjoyed amazing closeness and exhibited sacrificial generosity in the midst of ethnic hostilities and persecution. These disciples had zero governmental and religious power or influence. There influence was gained by the way they loved.

So, with all of the relatively new talk and our new catch words… emerging, deconstruction, missional, rethinking, etc., I wonder if we are in a new place or an ancient place in history. Perhaps, it is both. Whatever this place in history is, it is shaking the foundations of the church system and it is giving birth to a variety of ways to be the church. So, it is at this transitional, unsettling, and experimental time in history that we get to think and act anew about what it means to join in the kingdom of God as a community here and now.

Saturday, March 01, 2008


For those that don't read the comments, this is a comment I received on the previous post from someone who remains "anonymous" and my response to them.

Anonymous said...
This issue is not anywhere close to being resolved. The church is split 50-50 on this issue. To those who believe in the integrity of the Bible, it is an issue that can't be compromised. Those who are more concerned with not offending and accepting all as defined by the culture of the day are offended by anyone that says that sin really exists and separates us from God.
12:49 PM

Keith said...
Dear Anonymous,
Why anonymous by the way? A vote of 294-182 is a far cry from 50/50. Although the issue they voted on was whether or not to include the gay members photos. In the link you provided, I guess some are still trying to oust the pastor.
In your response, you say it is an issue that cannot be compromised. It is not like the gay folks in this story are in a position of leadership or anything like that. This is just about a photo in a directory. They did not even allow them to be put into the directory under the family section, but rather they were placed in "candid, small and large group pictures".
And by the way anonymous...your last paragraph in your comment says: "Those who are more concerned with not offending and accepting all as defined by the culture of the day are offended by anyone that says that sin really exists and separates us from God."
God says to accept all, at least that's what my bible tells me. Is it sin? The bible says it is and I believe it is. But I am not the judge, God is. You are not the judge, God is.What's the problem then with what I posted? I welcome your discussion, but please identify yourself next time. It sure is nice to know who you're talking to.
3:08 PM

Keith said...
FYI...I think I know who you are anyway. ;-)
3:12 PM