Friday, July 30, 2010

Vacation Images

Last week Rebekah and I took a vacation with her family.

We traveled by plane and automobile from:
  • Louisville, KY to Lexington, KY 
  • Lexington, KY to Orlando, FL
  • Orlando, FL to Brooksville, FL
  • Brooksville, FL to Tallahassee, FL
  • Tallahassee, FL to Plaquemine, LA 
  • Plaquemine, LA back to Louisville. 

Here are some of my favorite images from our time away. 

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Old and Anxious

Taken from The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman.

"That's the duty of the old," said the Librarian, "to be anxious on behalf of the young. And the duty of the young is to scorn the anxiety of the old."

They sat for a while longer, and then parted, for it was late, and they were old and anxious.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Tract Placement

So, yesterday I posted a quote from a Christopher Hitchens book, God is not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything. I bought the book at Borders the other day because it was marked down quite a bit and the premise intrigued me.

Guess what I found in the book? That's right. A tract.

What interesting places have you found tracts?

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Free Amazon Prime for Students

If you haven't heard already, students can sign up for a free year of Amazon Prime. All you need is a .edu email address and you are on your way to free two-day shipping. Even if you have a pre-existing Amazon account you can simply input your .edu email address and confirm it. There is no need to create a new Amazon account. Fantastic.

You can't ask for a better deal when shipping from here:

An Atheist's Sincere Question

Read what Christopher Hitchens writes in his book God is not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything.

Imagine that you can perform a feat of which I am incapable. Imagine, in other words, that you can picture an infinitely benign and all-powerful creator, who conceived you, then made and shaped you, brought you into the world he had made for you, and now supervises and cares for you even while you sleep. Imagine, further, that if you obey the rules and commandments that he has lovingly prescribed, you will qualify for an eternity of bliss and repose. I do not say that I envy you this belief (because to me it seems like the wish for a horrible form of benevolent and unalterable dictatorship), but I do have a sincere question. Why does such a belief not make its adherents happy? It must seem to them that they have come into possession of a marvelous secret, of the sort that they could cling to in moments of even the most extreme adversity.

Not all of the details that he gives in the scenario above are ultimately correct about Christianity, but isn't his question concerning religion legit? Hitchens' primary point when writing the above paragraph is that religion is a man-made institution designed to keep people from proper reason concerning the world around them. It looks good on paper, but unfortunately he has erroneously left out (or is blinded to) one key ingredient: the sinfulness of man.

With that being said, it makes me wonder that if Hitchens did not feel the need that ask that "sincere question," would he reconsider his perspective on religion or a particular religion? Maybe not. But maybe.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

The Old Spice Guy Responds

I'm sure you are all aware of the awesome Old Spice commercials starring former NFL player, Isaiah Mustafa. As people have been leaving comments on the online commercials, Mustafa, a.k.a The Old Spice Guy, has been responding. And the result can only be summed up in one word: viral.

Here are some of my favorite responses.

If you have not seen the original spots, you can watch them here and here. And if you want to watch all the responses, check out Old Spice's YouTube channel.

Friday, July 16, 2010

An Anniversary Card

Rebekah and I will celebrate our second anniversary on Monday. This is the card my sister sent us...

I won't argue. We love each other; get over it.

Don't Waste Your Life Sentence

And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up. And as was his custom, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and he stood up to read. And the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written,

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
because he has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives
and recovering of sight to the blind,
to set at liberty those who are oppressed,
to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor.”

And he rolled up the scroll and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. And he began to say to them, “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.”

Thursday, July 15, 2010


This summer has been worthless when it comes to movies. But I think Inception could change that when it hits theaters tomorrow.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Ode to a New Fridge

It needs no fiery dedication,
It has no moldy insulation,
No sealing issues with a door,
Hooray! Our new refrigerator.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Words Theologians Like: Genuflect

This installment of "Words Theologians Like" is credited to Jeremy. Be sure to check out his blog! If you would like to make a contribution to "Words Theologians Like," leave a remark and it may be featured in future installments.


To bow or kneel on one knee in a posture of worship or reverence.

"Despite his past rebellion, Jimmy found his heart genuflect before the living God."

Friday, July 09, 2010

Pastor Styles: Casual Sunday

Well, it's summer. And that means nearly unprecedented amounts of church fun manifested in "Casual Sundays." Here are three items you may see your pastor modeling on such an occasion.

Firstly, the braided belt. These relics garnish many pastor's closets and typically make their first appearance around Memorial Day when the deacon board decides jeans are allowed in the pulpit.

Secondly, the American flag tie. Summer offers plenty of opportunities to show unbridled patriotism and the pastor is not immune. Nothing makes the Galatians 5:1 sermon pop like donning one of these little gems.

Finally, the Hawaiian shirt. Popularized by a particular Californian pastor, the Hawaiian shirt has become a staple of "Casual Sunday." But beware if a pastor rocks this style too often; there may be a subliminal message being sent to the trustees that he wants a couple more vacation days next year.

If you liked this post, you can check out an earlier edition of "Pastor Styles."

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

A Past Link, A Current Friend

My mind has officially been blown. Check this out.

In May 2008, I sat down at the computer in my soon-to-be in-laws' house and checked my feedreeder. I found a link to an interesting list and decided to post the link on this very blog.

A year passed and Rebekah and I found ourselves married and in Louisville at a new church. Soon we began to get to know some people in our Bible Fellowship Group. One of those individuals, Derek, stumbled upon this blog and told me that in some unknown way he was familiar with it. The breadth of my readership is not all that far-reaching, so I didn't put a whole lot of thought into how he might have come across my blog. He brought it up a couple more times, but my response was the same.

Then, last Sunday, Derek approached me and told me where he had seen my blog before. Over two years ago, when I sat at that computer in Fargo on a Saturday morning, I linked to his blog. A man that I had never met before, who lived nearly 1,000 miles away, wrote a list that I read and desired others to read as well. As far as I knew anyone could have written that list. Anyone. I had no idea it would be someone who I would call a good friend.

That's how my mind was blown.

Thanks, Derek.

Words Theologians Like: Recapitulate

A few months back I thought of a nice recurring post, but unfortunately it never recurred. Until now.


To offer a brief summary of a conversation or lecture, summarize.

"After a no less than lengthy sermon, the guest preacher insisted on recapitulating his remarks."


Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Double Rainbow: So Intense

I've blogged about rainbows before, but this dude takes it to a whole 'nother level.

And auto-tuned? Pure insanity.

52 Books in 52 Weeks: June Report

Four more books in June. That puts me at twenty-three for the year. And I have twenty-nine to read by December 31. No problem.

I could have capitalized a little more in June; my reading was light. Oh, well.

I really enjoyed Life of Pi. It is the story of a young Indian boy, Pi Patel, whose father is a zoo-keeper. He is thrown into extraordinary circumstances when his dad sells the zoo and all the animals and decides to pursue a new life in Canada. Shortly into the journey, the Japanese cargo ship, which Pi's family has selected for their travel, sinks and Pi finds himself on a lifeboat with a wounded zebra, a orangutan, a hyena, and a 450-pound Bengal tiger. Not much time passes before Pi and the tiger are the only two left. Needless to say, Pi has to struggle to survive. It is written splendidly; Martel magnificently balances the weight of life-and-death circumstances with a light-hearted style. 

The Phantom Tollbooth is a children's book about a boy who thinks life is boring and meaningless. But when a tollbooth shows up in his living room he is destined to change his opinions. Through the tollbooth he goes on many adventures in places like "Dictionopolis" and "Digitopolis" and meets the likes of the "Watchdog," the "Humbug," and the "Spelling Bee." I am excited to read this book to my kids some day!

Finally, I began reading the "Percy Jackson and the Olympians" series. The Lightning Thief  and The Sea of Monsters are the first two installments in the set of five. The books feature a boy, Percy Jackson, who is the son of a Greek god. In the Greek hero tradition, Percy has an immortal father and a mortal mother. He attends "Camp Half-Blood," a summer-camp for kids just like him. During his time at camp he meets other campers and some mythological creatures. Together they go on quests and fight monsters and do all kinds of cool mythological stuff. Riordan does an excellent job of integrating Greek mythology into modern life. The books are a lot of fun.

Again, the count stands at twenty-three. Earlier this year I read:

Saturday, July 03, 2010

A Retired Postal Worker

This is an incredible interview with a man who just retired from the Postal Service.