Friday Stream of Consciousness – 86

Here’s what’s on my mind this Friday morning:

  • The blog has been down for a bit due to a corrupt plug-in update I downloaded. Right now, there is no way for me to get in to uninstall it. So, this ought to be fun. If you are reading this…it’s a miracle. Update: problem solved. Update: the original version that went out when the problem was solved was incomplete. I’m having a hard time getting the full version to post. Will try to finish by this afternoon–and fix the formatting problems as well.
  • Yesterday was the 4 of July, and the Spiveys had a great time in Palm Springs. People question why we come to the desert in the summer. Last week, the temperature crested 120 degrees here in Palm Springs. This week, it’s bounced between 108-112. Tropical :)
  • Why would anyone choose to come here? Two reasons: the kids are at swimming age…so we stay cool all day outside. Reason two, the rates are cheap—as in, less than half what they are at peak season. If you have to watch your money or are just plain cheap, the desert in the summer is a good buy. Arizona, California, Nevada—take your pick. Palm Springs is, at most, a 90 minute drive for us. Lovely.
  • I still have a difficult time understanding Independence Day scrooges—people who think yesterday was about celebrating war, violence, imperialism, etc. I don’t anyone who was celebrating those things.
  • Yesterday, for me, was about giving thanks for what we do have that’s noble. I will admit I’ve had Independence Day’s on which I’ve been prouder of America that I was on this one—given our country’s current moral trajectory. Nevertheless, I’m thankful for the blessing of living in this country where I’ve got clean drinking water, shelter, and only a semi-oppressive government ;)
  • Not to make light of others’ views on the matter—but I wonder how many Independence Day critics are critical of all national festivals for all nations—or if it’s just an anti-American thing?
  • Is it that America has been worse as a nation than any other? I’m not sure that’s intellectually defensible. But, if one were inclined to keep score on these things (usually not the best thing to do), one should appropriate points for the various goods America had done, as well…which are many.
  • What does a person holding these views make of, say, the opening ceremonies of the Olympics…where everyone is celebrating their own national pride?
  • Having said that, I haven’t had this little faith in government in my short lifetime. I’m not in a mood to rejoice in the current state of the union. However, that can change, as America has made changes from its other morally bankrupt patterns over the years. It’ll be hard for us to become a better society when our moral compass is calibrated so poorly—nearly from top to bottom. When you think north is south and west is east—you’re lost.
  • The Padres haven’t won a game since I published this column last week. Sigh.
  • Which is best: a great slice of pizza, a great burger, or a great hot dog?
  • Which is best: a good book, or a good movie?
  • Which is best: a good nap, or a good workout?
  • Which is best: nachos? or nachos?
  • Comparing your church to others is only for differentiated church leaders. If you are insecure, it’ll eat you alive. If you can learn from what others do while appreciating your church’s unique calling, it’ll do you some good. However, don’t keep score. Don’t allow it to mess your mind or pervert your sense of what “successful” ministry is.
  • I’m reading Big Sur by Jack Kerouac. After this, I’ll have one book left among all his writings I haven’t read.
  • John Steinbeck is probably my favorite author–at least “classic” author.
  • Among the newbies…I like Junot Diaz, Erik Larson, and Laura Hillenbrand. Give me some of yours in the comments section.
  • Among the seasons–I like summer the best. Great weather, beaches, and the mentality of SoCal changes for the better. When I lived in Texas, I like Fall the best–good weather, football, state fair, etc.
  • If you haven’t seen it…go watch Stephen Colbert’s sparkler bit on YouTube.
  • Off to the pool. I have some special stuff lined up for next week’s blog from the North American Christian Convention…excited to share with you.

What’s on your mind this Friday morning?

 

Share Your Thoughts

  1. Being around the 4th, a good hot dog, a good book, and a nap. Either way, with cheese and chili, nachos are good. Agree with your comments on America. Thanks.

  2. Tim,

    Since I commented yesterday about my mixed feelings regarding Independence Day celebration, allow me to comment again.

    I think it is sort of neat to see all the nations raising their flags at the opening ceremonies of the olympics but there’s a part of me that cringes too. When Jesus returns and ushers in the fullness of the new heaven and earth, will the body of Christ being lifting different national identities that belonged to the old life? Likely not and since I believe Christians are to live as witnesses of the new life, I want to be careful how I express any patriotism and national identity because that is not who I am in Christ.

    With all that being said, I can understand and appreciate moderate forms of patriotism which neither is allowed to eclipse our witness as disciples of Jesus Christ nor becomes syncretistic (two issues which I do believe happen).

    Grace and Peace,

    Rex

    P.S. I always enjoy reading your “Friday Stream of Consciousness” posts.