Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Happy Birthday Blog

One year today. March 31, 2008 I created my very first blog entry. It is amazing to me that I still get "google" hits off this first blog from folks searching for the lyrics to the song, "The Love of God". Now that I’ve included the title of the song here..it will probably double my traffic. That’s a good thing! Perhaps a birthday present, huh?


Saturday, March 28, 2009

Recycled Cartoon

I didn’t really realize that in addition to plastics, aluminum cans, newspapers, etc cartoons may also be recycled. Especially so, when one is a member of the PCUSA denomination. We appear to be extremely litigious here of late. I used this cartoon last year here...and after reading March’s The Layman..all I needed do was change the captions and recycle. It appears that I should probably keep this cartoon handy because the future looks promising for attorneys in the PCUSA. (click to enlarge)

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Without Excuse....

What has really puzzled me for some time is that there are actually some who refer to themselves as "atheists". And I wonder, is there really any such thing as an "atheist"? I've heard there are no atheists in foxholes and there are no atheists in the hereafter. Here is the Dictionary.com defintition: "An atheist is one who denies the existence of a deity or of divine beings". Now, bear in mind, as Christians we believe, that an atheist is created in the image of God..just as is the believer. In other words we all..atheist or believer..bear the marks of the One who has created us, e.g., with faculties of rationality, affections, a sense of morality, spirituality, etc. Paul says, "that which is known about God is evident within them.." (Rom 1:19) Dictionary.com also has a definition for us concerning God: "the one Supreme Being, the creator and ruler of the universe".

As a Christian, of course, I come with a Christian point of view..simply because I DO believe in the Christian God. And..I probably cannot be totally objective about this subject, at least in the mind of an atheist, because I presuppose God..and I presuppose the Christian God...so therefore I will use what I consider to be His Holy..and Truthful Word. Again, the question: Is there any such thing as an "atheist"? And if so, upon what is his understanding based?

What would a universe based upon chance, without a creator and ruler, look like? Do you suppose it would be orderly or chaotic? I’ve visited my granddaughter’s playroom recently. It is normally in a chaotic state, ...toys, games and yo-yo’s (TG&Y) in a random state. I wasn’t disappointed. If I were to see it in an orderly state I would have to conclude that someone intervened in the normal course of events...mother or daughter. It is not normally in an orderly condition. Would a universe, without a creator and ruler, be in a orderly or a chaotic state? Surely the atheist would have to agree with the Christian believer that it would be in a chaotic state, random and unorganized. But..what do we actually observe about the universe? Chaos or order? Dependable laws and rules or ever changing and undependable physical laws? Magnificent and wonderfully made creations..or chaotic abstractions. Even our logic and reasoning are the results of an ordered, ruled, purposeful universe that has been brought into existence by One that must have the qualities of logic, reason, order and purpose. This is not "rocket science"! The atheist must muster logic and reasoning to make his anti-God statement. Ultimately, he must be omniscient (an attribute of God) to KNOW..there is no God.

So therefore, St Paul is able to say in the book of Romans Chapter 1, verse 20 without any hesitation, "they are without excuse". It is interesting, to me, that the word "excuse" can be literally translated "without an apologetic". An "apologetic" is the basis for a statement. To propose an "apologetic" one must use.."reason, logic, purpose and order" which are not the attributes of a chaotic, unpurposeful or random, godless state. One might even say.."how dare you use the things of God (purpose, logic, reason) to disprove the God of reason, purpose and logic"? "Get your own apologetic!"..God might say to them. However, here is what He does say to them (to quote from my presupposed book of authority): "For the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead..so they are without excuse."

And... amazingly God graciously pleads with him(us), "Come now, and let us reason together...though your sins be as scarlet..they shall be white as snow, though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool". (Isa 1:18) And I would simply add this.."repent, and believe the Gospel". (Mark 1:15) Christ died for sinners!

Friday, March 20, 2009

I Got The Blues, Pt 2

I was digging around in my Word doc file recently and came upon a document that I had copied from some unknown website back in n'aught 3. Since we are on the subject of the "blues" it is quite fitting that I follow-up the last entry with this little tid-bit of info on what really constitutes the "blues" and those that may or may not have a case of it. If I knew the author of this little gem I would most assuredly give him/her full credit. (I will take some editing credit)

Most Blues songs begin with: "Woke up this morning..." (which is a good Blues way to begin a day)"

I got a good woman" is a bad way to begin a Blues song, unless you stick something nasty in the next line like, "I got a good woman, with the meanest face in town."

The Blues is simple. After you get the first line right, repeat it. Then find something that rhymes - sort of: "Got a good woman with the meanest face in town." Yes, I got a good woman with the meanest face in town."Got teeth like Margaret Thatcher and she weigh 500 pound."

The Blues is not about choice.You stuck in a ditch, you stuck in a ditch...ain't no way out.

Blues cars: Chevys, Fords, Cadillacs and broken-down trucks. Blues don't travel in Volvos, SAABs, Mercedes, BMWs, or Sport Utility Vehicles. Most Blues transportation is a Greyhound bus or a southbound train. Jet aircraft and state-sponsored motor pools ain't even in the running. Walkin' plays a major part in the Blues lifestyle. (and not for exercise) So does fixin' to die.

Teenagers can't sing the Blues. They ain't fixin' to die yet. Adults sing the Blues. In Blues, adulthood means being old enough to get the electric chair if you shoot a man in Memphis.

Blues can take place in New York City but not in Hawaii or anywhere in Canada. Hard times in Minneapolis or Seattle is probably just clinical depression. Chicago, St. Louis, Kansas City, Memphis, and N’awlins are still the best places to have the Blues. You cannot have the Blues in anyplace that don't get rain.

A man with male pattern baldness ain't the Blues. A woman with male pattern baldness is.

Breaking your leg 'cause you were skiing is not the Blues.

Breaking your leg 'cause an alligator be chomping on it is.

You can't have no Blues in an office or a shopping mall. The lighting is wrong. Go outside to the parking lot or sit by the dumpster.

Good places for the Blues
a. highway
b. jailhouse
c. empty bed
d. bottom of a whiskey glass

Bad places for the Blues
a. Nordstrom's
b. Gallery openings
c. Ivy League institutions
d. Golf courses

No one will believe it's the Blues if you wear a suit, 'less you happen to be an old person, and you slept in it.

Do you have the right to sing the Blues? Yes, if:
a. you're older than dirt
b. you're blind
c. you shot a man in Memphis
d. you can't be satisfied
No, if:
a. you have all your teeth
b. you were once blind but now can see
c. the man in Memphis lived
d. you have a 401K or trust fund, unless it’s in the toilet!

Blues is not a matter of color. It's a matter of bad luck. Tiger Woods cannot sing the Blues. Sonny Liston or John Bobbitt could have. Ugly people also got a leg up on the Blues.

If you ask for water and you're darlin' gives you white wine vinegar, it's the blues.Other acceptable Blues beverages are:
a. cheap wine (Thunderbird, or 2 buck Chuck for example)
b. whiskey or bourbon
c. muddy water
d. black coffee

The following are NOT Blues beverages:
a. Perrier
b. Chardonnay
c. Snapple
d. Slim Fast

If death occurs in a cheap motel or a shotgun shack, it's a Blues death. Stabbed in the back by a jealous lover is another Blues way to die. So is the electric chair, substance abuse, and dying lonely on a broken-down cot. You can't have a Blues death if you die during a tennis match or while getting liposuction.

Some Blues names for women:
a. Sadie
b. Big Mama
c. Bessie
d. Fat River Dumpling
e. Stella

Some Blues names for men:
a. Joe
b. Willie
c. Little or Big Willie
d. Sam Cooke

Persons with names like Michelle, Jessica, Biff, Buffy, Debbie, and Heather can't sing the Blues no matter how many men they shoot in Memphis.

Blues Name Starter Kit:
a. name of physical infirmity (Blind, Cripple, Lame, etc.) combined with,
b. name of fruit (Lemon, Lime, Kiwi, etc.) combined with
c. last name of President (Jefferson, Johnson, Fillmore, etc.)
For example: Blind Lime Jefferson, Pegleg Lemon Johnson, Fat Banana Washington or Cripple Kiwi Fillmore, etc. (Well, maybe not "Kiwi.")

I don't care how tragic your life is: if you own a computer, you cannot sing the blues, unless it’s crashed searching out info on Bill Doggett..or Fat Banana Washington.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

I Got The Blues

Now, I’m not quite sure that a Christian can really have the "blues"..unless there may be a longing or a deep desire from within the heart to see your Savior face to face. And..I’m sure that there have been many songs and sermons sung and preached on this subject...but I doubt if any had a title anywhere near something akin to "I Got the Blues".

If you have been following my blogging recently I have mentioned that I had been searching for the 3rd friend from my tour of duty in the U.S. Army back in the early 60’s..and that I discovered that he had suddenly passed away in 1996 due to heart failure...12 years prior to the beginning of my futile search for reunion. What I also discovered was that my Army friend left a son and a daughter. Let me tell you about the son...at least what I’ve been able to discover at this point. His son is nearly the cloned copy of the friend that I knew when in the service, although now in his mid thirties. We were in our early twenties when in the Army. We have exchanged e-mails. He is a musician, a guitarist, specializing in the "blues".

Prior to being drafted into service I and a couple friends had our own little rhythm & blues band and played in a few joints..for "food"..(beer, actually). I immediately developed a kinship based upon the fact that not only did he know of one of my early musical idols, Bill Doggett, but he also has all of his records and also greatly admires him. Plus, this fella can play the guitar...like I only dreamed of playing. Our little R&B band sounded like my granddaughter’s 5th grade band, comparatively. (about which I recently blogged) He not only plays professionally..but he is also utilizing his wonderful talent in the music department of his Church. Here is a demo video he has produced:

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Now I Lay me Down to Sleep...

I’m going to check with my children to see if I’ve done any permanent damage. We prayed this prayer often when they were growing up:
Tim Hawkins

Friday, March 6, 2009

Wiedervereinigung (Reunion)

Tomorrow I am meeting with an old U.S. Army buddy that I haven’t seen in 40 years..or so. We spent nearly two years together in the same Kaserne (barracks) in the US 7th Army 4th Msl Btn, Battery D, 1962-1963 in Schwabach, Germany. Our claim to war fame was that we went on full alert during the Cuban Missile Crisis which was a line drawn in the sand by JFK in 1962 which said to his Russian counterpart, Khrushchev, you can go no further with your arms program in Cuba. Our Hawk Missile defense system was brought up to the ready and aimed toward the East just in case Khrushchev decided to take this as a provocation to attack Germany. Providentially, Khrushchev backed down after negotiators at the UN came to agreement and peace was maintained.

This agreement made our tour of duty in Germany much more enjoyable than that of our counterparts of 20 years prior. We will have much to hash, rehash, and reminisce about regarding our experiences of 40+ years ago in Deutschland. I am posting a picture of each of us from the 1962 era and after the meeting will add the 2009 picture of the reunion. I dont think I have changed that much...but I’ll bet he has!!!

2009 Photo

Tuesday, March 3, 2009