Maybe if I set it on fire…

It is the end of the year and time for my traditional “maybe if I set it on fire” moment as I look at my desk and evaluate my lack of organization. Certain that there must be a better, and safer, solution I found Telecommuting Truths asking “Wouldnt it be great if someone could come in and place all my stuff on disk and file it away for me in a very easy to work with style?”

The good news it appears is that I am not alone in my frustration. The bad news is that the piles seem deeper knowing others share my filing woes.

As I am determined to start the new year in a more organized fashion I am doing the only thing a rational, reasonably intelligent person can do; finding a match!

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What makes church “church?”

Very interesting post over at bright and beautiful; challenging, disapointing and yet strangly encouraging all at the same time. Take a minute to read it and then continue:

Observation: When growing up Methodist, church was something we did. In fact, church was something we did all the time. Our friends were church friends. Our church social group went to lake, the adults drank beer, and everyone water skied. I think we ate some type of pot luck, sloppy joes, or chili feed at church at least twice a month. My point; church was about community. 

Then I grew up, got saved and something changed. I wanted to be spiritualy fed and challenged. I have been to many, many churches over the past 25 years since leaving that Methodist church. Many I have loved for a period of time, some I tolerated, and some I ended up trying to figure out what I ever saw in them. Each one taught me something and yet it seemed each one left me wanting more, wanting the church to be better or offer me something different.

Question 1: Is it possible that in my desire for church to be something specific and in the interest of spiritual hunger, I missed the very thing that made, and makes, church “church?”

Question 2: Am I off course wanting church to be something or offer something to me instead of accepting church as it is and for what it is?

Question 3: Have we let church stop being about community?

What makes church “church” to you?

So many things wrong with this…

There was a link on the MSN front page titled “How to tell if a charity deserves your money”. There are so many things wrong with this headline and the story behind it.

First of all, even if we overlook the key question I will ask shortly, shouldn’t the question more properly be “How do I tell if the charity administering the money is deserving?” Does this particular organization actually produce results, good results, with the money it attracts? The charity is not supposed to be the purpose for the money, but rather the charitable it is designed to help.

These seem to be more important questions, but not yet the most important. That would be, “How does this charity grow the kingdom?”

If you want to save Polar Bears, bully for you. If you want to champion the dumb friends league, great. Instruments for the public school band, don’t get me started. But in all these cases, is anyone being saved?

If you have the choice between saving a Polar Bear or saving a life what do you do? That seems fairly simple, at least to me, sorry bear. But what happens when the choice is a bear, a life or a soul?

If I believe as I think I believe, then what value is a world full of bears and lost souls to be eaten by them? Isn’t life eternal more important than the even the life, let alone the bear?

So again, shouldn’t the question when deciding what do do with charitable giving be “How does this charity grow the kingdom?”

The most important bowl game

At long last it is official, Nebraska will play Clemson in the Gator Bowl on New Year’s Day. This is of course the most important bowl game of the year, with the Husker’s returning to prominence under Bo Pelini.

What is the purpose of your message?

Speaking about a Joel Osteen and his message, Mark of Denver in Translation say’s “It’s not a heretical message, it’s just not a powerful one.” I have to question this one, not the heretical part which is silly to me, but the “it’s just not a powerful one” part.

A ministry reaching beyond his immediate church; beyond those who closely share his beliefs; reaching out to the mainstream and beyond; reaching those who might not receive a less “heretical” message; seems pretty powerful to me.

Now, if you want question the spiritual depth of Joel Osteen’s television or book ministries that may be a case where you could say “it’s just not a powerful one.” But this leads to the question “what is the purpose of the message?”

If Mr. Osteen is trying to provide deep spiritual or biblical insight I am not sure he is on target. If on the other hand he is trying to pastor to believers; reach those who are ready, willing and wanting to believe; or reach people who will never step foot into a church, I have to think Joel Osteen is right on target.

What is the purpose of your message, to speak or be heard?

What is the deal with Easter?

While planning a business trip for next spring I was surprised to find the proposed date was in fact Easter Sunday, April 12, 2009. What is the deal with Easter? Who decided it could be whenever that who wants it to be?

I mean, everyone knows everyone married better know that Valentine’s Day is in February, in fact February 14th. Every year. Not sometimes the middle of February and other times the end of January. It has the honor of it’s own day in the year, every year.

That’s right, the made up for marketing purposes (but a great day to celebrate love if your reading this sweetheart) Valentine’s Day has it’s own day while Easter, the most important occurrence to Christians, indeed the day we celebrate what enables Christians to be Christian, occurs “sometime in the spring.”

This does not make sense, but what to do about it? Do you know why Easter is going to be on April 12, 2009?