Judge Not … ?

We all have faith, don’t we?  That is, we have faith in something.  I might be the  staunchest of atheists, yet faith in the possibility of staying alive, and making some progress in my endeavors, is required even of me as I get out of bed every morning.  Over the years, when sharing my faith with others, I have been told, “… judge not!”  This is meant, I have assumed, to shut the conversation down, or at least make sure my POV has no sharp edges.  It has been spoken as a sort of talisman– once out in the space between us, it is supposed to guarantee that no unacceptable words will come from my side (or at least give cover for ending the conversation with a note of, “… I told you not to go there.”)  While meditating on Christ’s words in Matt. 7:1 (the source of this idea), the realization came that I had significantly misunderstood it.  In reality, the Lord meant to say, “Sentence not…”  Continue reading “Judge Not … ?”

Thomas Times Newsletter – More from TT

This is the promised addendum to our 2017 news update.  Hope you enjoy it!

As my parents began to forget things and struggle mentally a number of years ago, it became clear that they would need a more intensive “at home” care than we had planned on.  When both were diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, I remembered what Dad had done for his mother-in-law in a similar situation, and then realized Beth and I were going to start a business we weren’t qualified or trained to pull off: a mini-nursing home.  This past year, after Dad died in June and Mom in August, our careers Continue reading “Thomas Times Newsletter – More from TT”

Worship the Image

Our church has an amazing pastor & teacher.  For years (and I’m not kidding) we have been learning from the book of Exodus, and recently Bill has been teaching on the “Ten Words”.  As a child, I learned them as the 10 Commandments, but they are actually more than that.  Today’s lesson was a kind of preparation for a detailed study of the 2nd word, which I always thought Continue reading “Worship the Image”

Social- real, virtual or both?

In a recent meeting of our church leadership, the power of social media to make meaningful connections between people we know and those we don’t was brought up.  Someone commented that “Our church’s new picture directory is … Facebook!”.  Furthermore, this has happened quite organically, and without any set plan.  We are now exploring how to make a biblical impact with social media, and this has reminded me of my own experience.  Quite frankly, I am Continue reading “Social- real, virtual or both?”

Slippers- their name says it…

“No, my left hand isn’t dangling by a thread after massive loss of blood yesterday as a result of …”  That would be my answer to my brother, who had called from Calif. this morning very concerned by an e-mail he had gotten yesterday from Mom.  She didn’t send it to me; I haven’t seen it; something about serious injury to my whole hand…

Remember when your mother told you to stop running around the house in your slippers because you would bust your head wide open?  (You were 4 at the time; you may not remember.)  I forgot; was just doing Continue reading “Slippers- their name says it…”

Voo…

A terrible earthquake, apparently building up pressure over hundreds of years, has practically destroyed the capital city of Haiti.  Over 200,000 people, some having died in agony after hours under the rubble, have been dumped in mass graves because there simply wasn’t time to bury them properly.  Many more are terribly injured or suffering from the deepest poverty, because they have nothing left, and they are in line with thousands of others who have nothing left.  But… as my daughter recently commented, this just doesn’t seem fair.  Haiti always seems to get the short end of the stick; they have been in poverty for centuries, and are Continue reading “Voo…”

Facebook and the next life

OMG– where is this going?  Don’t worry- nothing spooky (Oct. 31st being tomorrow notwithstanding 🙂 )  Give me 30 sec.- something just hit me, and to illustrate it, I’m going to post here and at Facebook simultaneously.

An online IT commentator says in a recent post, “It’s all enough to make me want to stop using Facebook.” The “it” is a creepy feeling he gets when, by way of his Facebook Wall, his relative starts a conversation thread with some guy who is the neighbor of his co-worker, and their only connection is … him!  In other words, his formerly separate spheres of relationships (family, work, neighbors, etc.) are now melding together into one big, sometimes confusing glob.

That’s heavenContinue reading “Facebook and the next life”

The garden again

Please note this:

But the clothes are an expression of a more disturbing, and rising, trend of teenage sexual behavior: Oral sex. More than half of teens (55% of boys, 54% of girls) have engaged in oral sex, according to the Center for Disease Control. Moreover, because it is not actual intercourse, kids do not consider oral sex to be unsafe, or even to be sex.

and now this:

Gen. 3:4,5  But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die.  For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

Everyone knows that the Dragon Deceiver was Continue reading “The garden again”

Vanessa- an update

Vanessa Liu, our Chinese guest for Christmas, left yesterday, and we miss her so much!  As planned, we took her to the Creation Museum in Petersburg, KY last Wed.  The exhibits are both comprehensive and impressive, and Vanessa mostly listened, kept her Chinese dictionary at the ready, and seemed to enjoy herself.  She saw and heard many things that were new to her.  At supper the next day, we had a long discussion about “faith in evolution” vs. faith in Christ, and she restated her commitment to evolutionary beliefs.  Those are, we believe, the major impediment to her conversion, since she has been taught them constantly since childhood.  The good news is that she now has the other side, presented thoughtfully and respectfully.  In addition, she participated in giving and receiving gifts (I got a quill and ink set, for instance), attended many church services, went dancing with us on New Year’s Eve, spent several hours discussing his trip to China with our cousin, John Graham and even did some target practice.  As we parted, and some of us were close to tears, she stressed that she wanted us to visit her in China.  I hope we can! 🙂

Here are some pictures of our adventures together: Continue reading “Vanessa- an update”