Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Odds & Ends


  • From Mitchell & Webb comes this warning for all you church innovators out there: great ideas are useless without a context in which they can be used.
  •  We've had three days of glorious weather here on the Oregon Coast. Unfortunately, this meant the local casino was able to celebrate its 15th anniversary with a fireworks display. My dog was not amused.
  • You know what they need at the General Conference session in Atlanta? Vuvuzelas. Just saying.
  • And I'll close with this quote from Bertholt Brecht (and no, I haven't yet figured out if it is a promise or a warning): "Because things are the way they are, things will not stay the way they are."

    Tuesday, June 15, 2010

    Odds & Ends

    • My eldest daughter spent a couple of months counting sea cucumbers in the Philippines; fortunately, she got back in time to graduate with a degree in biology from Walla Walla University.
    • It's been cool and rainy here on the Oregon Coast -- in fact, it's been one of the wettest years in history! And if that wasn't bad enough, the deer ate all my trillium. Stupid deer.
    • Two things I learned from Soul Searching: the religious and spiritual lives of American teenagers. First, the importance of parents in forming their children's beliefs. (Like the book said, "We'll get what we are.") Second, most children (and presumably, most adults) are what the book calls "Moral Therapeutic Deists" i.e. they believe God wants them to be good and God wants them to be happy -- but aside from that, God pretty much leaves them alone. (Oh yes, they also believe that bad people go to Hell. Salvation by grace, in other words, has been replaced with salvation by nice.)
    • Viz. this week's Sabbath School lesson: if you heal someone who's sick, then you're being merciful. But if you try to prevent someone from getting sick by asking them to make changes in their diet, then you're meddling. The first is thought to be good, while the second is thought to be bad . . . even though meddling would probably save more lives than mercy ever could.
    • Map lovers should check out Valpairaso University's on-line collection that tells you who believes what and where in the United States.Who would have guessed, for instance, there were so many Muslims in Oregon's Union County?
    • And I'll close with this quote from Martin Luther King Jr. -- and I should add this is one quote I never expect to hear at a graduation service: "Human salvation lies in the hands of the creatively maladjusted."