Showing posts from November, 2013

Lincoln's legacy - Red states receive blue cash

This article is depressing, Was the Gettysburg Address a mistake? at Politico by Chuck Thompson who writes strongly in hope of letting the southern Tea Party states secede. He's pretty much calling their bluff and hypocrisy. In general, the "liberal, socialist" states pay more in taxes than they receive back from the feds, and the southern states receive more than they pay. See graphic here and article here.

 Thompson writes in the article concerning the South's response to Reconstruction was "... casting itself as the woebegone victim through typically radical politics (obstructionist), religion (evangelical), race relations (segregated), education (under-funded) and business (anti-labor), has done its level best ever since to remain an emotionally estranged partner who nevertheless sticks around for the financial support."

The Northern liberals keep donating their money to help the poor in other states including those in states who need assistance. Thos…

Open-handed - a posture personally, theologically, and politically

Last night a friend from church asked me what side I fall on politically. Old labels carry too much baggage though. I know who I have been and I know who I want to be. I want to be someone who loves God and loves my neighbors. In the parable of the Good Samaritan, when Jesus explains through a story who
The Parable of the Good Samaritan by Jan Wijnants (1670) shows the Good Samaritan tending the injured man. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)  qualifies as a "neighbor" (anyone in need) and what it looks like to love them (generosity of time, space and money), I see an all encompassing philosophy of life. It's a philosophy that is unhindered by artificial social barriers. It sees unity with all who bleed. No one in need is excluded. All are included. The examples of villains in Jesus' story are those who cannot be bothered with the inconvenience of aid, who cannot forget past grievances, who transfer the faults of a group onto the individual, who delight in justice instead of m…

Pastors who practice conspicuous consumption

I'm not naming any names because this is a recurring issue for pastors who come into wealth. They start living wealthy and proudly. Then they get called out on it and respond angrily. "God has blessed me. You're just jealous. Who gave you the right to judge me?"

I'd like to defend the multitudes.

The "haters" are simply responding to the juxtaposition between the Jesus they read about and the lifestyle He condemns. These people are not haters, but brothers and sisters, crooked like all of us. But even Balaam learned from his talking ass.

Matthew 6:19-21 The Voice (VOICE) 19 Some people store up treasures in their homes here on earth.This is a shortsighted practice—don’t undertake it. Moths and rust will eat up any treasure you may store here. Thieves may break into your homes and steal your precious trinkets.20 Instead, put up your treasures in heaven where moths do not attack, where rust does not corrode, and where thieves are barred at the door. 21 For…

Trying to be a lover and not a hater

I think, because I don't know for sure, that a posture of love presents as civil, kind, humble, generous and inclusive. For whatever reasons, especially in my defenses of fundamentalist christianity, more so online than in real life, I have not presented myself in these ways. I might have thought was behaving out of love, but I wasn't.

One of the slogans in evangelical christianity is that we become what we worship. What was I worshiping that was hard, lacking grace, ignoring other people's stories that didn't align with the big picture I believed? Words on a page? Elaborate assemblages of those words? Safety? Worshiping the Word of God, a person, deity in the flesh, complicated and dangerous is so much more difficult. It's the simplicity of it that makes it difficult. Living by two rules, love Him and love my neighbor, is too open ended.

I wanted to title this post, "trying to not be an asshole," but it might not be very loving to some of my neighbors wh…