Friday, September 26, 2008

Political Junk Mail: McCain is a a close-minded jerk

In the past couple weeks, I've received 4 separate mailers espousing John McCain's positions concerning a woman's right to choose whether or not to kill her own baby. I should clarify that these mailers come from McCain's opposition, usually featuring a large picture of a nurse telling why McCain's position is downright wrong, and evil to boot.

By now, you've figured out that I am not a fan of John McCain.

But these flyers have the opposite of their intended effect. They pretty much remind me of why I should vote for McCain - despite my desire not to do so. The Pro-Choice crowd would be much better off if they just stayed out of my mailbox.

In the past year, we've lost two children before they had a chance - I would never have guessed that it would have been as emotionally difficult as it has been. I've also discovered, firsthand, that you can see the baby's heartbeat on an ultrasound, before it even "looks" like a baby. I also couldn't have guessed that that experience would have been as emotional as it was. Suffice to say that my "platform beliefs" on the sanctity of life now have personal life experience to back them up - not that they needed it.

So, if you please, Pro-Choice advocates, please stay out of my mailbox. I don't want to vote for McCain, but you are pushing me. You are pushing me.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Death Magnetic: Thank you, Rick Rubin.

Metallica is one of the greatest rock / metal bands of all time, probably the greatest. Rick Rubin is one of the greatest album producers of all time.

Metallica's last album, St. Anger, was really bad - I mean it, really bad. What made it worse, was the documentary, Some Kind of Monster, which showed exactly why the album was so bad. (I should clarify that the documentary is actually awesome - like a watching a train-wreck in slow motion.) Given that the two previous albums, Load and Reload, really weren't that great either - it pretty much looked like the band had lost their magic.

Enter Rick Rubin, producer of such classics, and band reimaginings as:

Johnny Cash's American Series - his last five albums

Blood Sugar Sex Magic - Red Hot Chili Peppers

License to Ill - Beastie Boys

Raising Hell - Run DMC

Demonsweatlive - Danzig

Divine Intervention - Slayer

Wildflowers - Tom Petty

Toxicity - System of a Down

The Black Album - Jay Z

Subliminal Verses - Slipknot

It goes without saying that I own each of these albums, plus most of Rubin's catalog.

Rubin is also given some credit for the melding of rap and metal into auditory masterpieces. He was the co-founder of Def-Jam, and the original DJ for the Beastie Boys. He is currently the co-head of Columbia Records.

I'll let you know what I think of Metallica's new album, Death Magnetic. Although I am a little bitter that there isn't a single Florida date on their new 44 city North American Tour. Especially since three of my favorite metal bands are opening for them on this tour: Down, Lamb of God, and Machinehead.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Terrorists have laptops in their hideouts. Can we afford to have a leader who can't use one?

Osama Bin Laden is in a cave somewhere plotting the destruction of the western world on a laptop computer. So why is it that the Presidential hopeful, John McCain, can't seem to step into the 21st Century?

When the Republican candidate described himself earlier this year as a computer illiterate who had never gone online, it just made him look odd. And old.

When McCain was asked to avow Mac or PC and replied "neither"—a totally great response if the question had been "boxers or briefs?"— it sounded pretty last-generation.

After the September 11 terrorist attacks, the head of the National Security Agency went on television and described the United States as "behind the curve in keeping up with the global telecommunications revolution."

So McCain's admission that he was behind the same curve raises a larger, more troubling question: if Osama bin Laden beat us with a laptop, shouldn't we at least have a president who is reasonably conversant with one?

Monday, September 15, 2008

High Tech for Jesus

Call me a tech junkie, but I really do appreciate the availability of HD video via the Internet. Especially when I can stream it through my PlayStation 3 to my TV.

I especially appreciate being able to watch Mark Driscoll preach - on demand - on my television.

Here's the set up that makes it possible at Mars Hill Church, as well as their justification for such a massive expense.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

I kissed a girl and I liked it..... then I went to Hell.

This is the sign out in front of Havens Corners Church in Blacklick, Ohio (just outside of Columbus). Dave Allison, the pastor, says that the sign is a "loving warning to teens."

ht: CMS

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

A Pastor's Salary

If you're a Senior Pastor at a church in the United States, you're probably making about $81,000 per year. That is the finding of the 2009 Compensation Handbook for Church Staff survey of nearly 5,000 churches and 11,000 employees.

Here's the breakdown: If your church averages 100-300 people, the average pay is around $73,000. If your church has a weekly worship attendance of between 300-500, that number jumps to $88,000. And the salary average for the senior pastor of a church if attendance is 500+ is $103,000 and up.

According to the survey, pastors in the suburbs tend to make as much as 50% more than their rural and urban counterparts.


Saturday, September 6, 2008

McCain throws us a curveball

I have to admit that I am a little perplexed with the VP nomination of Sarah Palin. I had absolutely no interest in voting for McCain, mainly because of his age - and a little because of his gung-ho obstinance. But by having a young woman as his heir - especially considering his age - he has definitely given me something to ponder.

It will have to be something that my wife and I will discuss - she was, after all, rooting for Hillary. I don't blame my wife for wanting to see a woman president. I just wanted a pro-life woman president, that's all. Or a pro-life black president for that matter.
Let's face it, as far as our household was concerned, Obama shot himself in the foot when he chose an old white dude as his VP. Now that McCain has chosen a young woman, we are thoroughly confused. Now, more than ever, I'd like to just throw away my vote on the Libertarian Party, or even write in "Jesus", or just stay home for that matter.
I don't know if I can bring myself to vote for McCain and then pray that he falls and breaks his hip or has a stroke. That just seems wrong, though it would ultimately be for the best.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Setting up Church every week

This is a video by Independence Church in Weston. When we went to this church last January for their inaugural launch, it gave me a bit of the heebie jeebies for a few reasons that brought back memories from our own church planting experience:

  • The physical set up in the school cafeteria could easily be described as overkill - as was ours.

  • The weekly work that went into that setup must've been rough, and probably done by a small handful of people - much like our own experience.

  • It seemed that they might just be in over their heads - as were we.

  • Their church didn't have a worship leader and our church couldn't keep a worship leader.

Despite the heebie jeebies, I have continued to follow this church for the past year, and was mildly amused by this video for their "Fit Club" - the pastor's humorous attempt to cajole the membership into helping to set up the church each week.

I feel for you Nathan, I really do.

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