Archive for the ‘Society’ Category

Goodbye Matt …

Saturday, June 4th, 2011

I read once that western cowboy stories are America’s knight-in-shining-armor stories. That author obviously wasn’t talking about the recent ones. But about Matt Dillion and ones like him.

Marshal Matthew Dillion was someone you could look up to – literally and figuratively. James Arness was 6’7”. He stood head and shoulders over everyone else in Dodge. But more than that, he was a hero. He stood for honor, justice, fairness, and right. He was a gentle man full of quiet strength. I am working my way through Gunsmoke episodes on Netflix and it always amazes me the way he walks right into danger – because it had to be done. Wrong had to be faced and stopped. And whoever was being hurt had to be protected.

I look at the “heroes” now and I don’t see any. They are just as apt to murder as the bad guys are – sometimes you really can’t tell them from the bad guys. Hollywood talks about flawed heroes as being more realistic. Maybe that’s so, but then who do you look up to? Who do those “heroes” inspire to be better people? Who learns about honor? Or justice? Or what makes a man?

So many of our kids are latch-key kids who raise each other. I wonder how they would be different if they had heroes like Marshal Dillion to learn from, to look up to, to want to be like.

I’ll miss James Arness. While he was here, it was like Matt Dillion was still here, too.

Avatar

Wednesday, January 6th, 2010

I keep hearing about “conservatives” hating Avatar. I don’t know if that’s politically correct for “christian” or not. But I wonder at the anger of these people. I don’t really understand it.

There is a native population in tune with nature (reminiscent of the Indians). There are mercenaries willing to destroy a planet’s eco-system to provide what their dying planet needs (reminiscent of our global warming debates and colonialism). The powerful throughout history really don’t have a great track record – is some kind of guilt coming out as anger? What would make these writers/commentators take it so personally – as if it were a personal attack on them?

Anyway – all the things they focus on are peripheral – none of the angry remarks touch on what the movie is about. Makes me wonder if they’re uncomfortable with it.

They ignore the beautiful story of a broken, empty person finding himself and becoming whole.  It was wonderful. It was inspiring. It was encouraging. What more can you ask from a movie?

Voting #2

Tuesday, November 4th, 2008

I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone – for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.   This is good, and pleases God our Savior,  who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. (1 Timothy 2:1-4)

Today’s the day. They call it historic. Not only is it the longest campaign in our history, it also involves race and sex barriers.

But regardless of how it turns out. Whether I’m happy with the outcome or not – God has given me a course of action.

I am to pray for these leaders – and not just the prayers I usually think of – thanksgiving is part of the list. He doesn’t say anything about the thanksgiving being based on the characters of those leaders or even where they are leading. So, thanksgiving for what, I wonder. That they are there – that someone’s leading? There would be chaos otherwise.

Paul says that the goal of our prayers is that we may live peaceful and quiet lives. The word “live” has to do with “spending life.”  And the word “lives” means “everyday lives”. We pray for our leaders so that we can spend our everydays in peace – able to live out our faith (that’s the godliness and holiness).

Then he says this is good and pleases God. The word “good” can be translated “beautiful.” Imagine! Something I do is beautiful to God and pleases Him.

The next thing Paul says tells us why God is so pleased with those prayers. Living is peace and quiet isn’t just for us. Being able to live out our faith isn’t either.

Living our faith will touch others. They will want to know why we live like we do – and we’ll have a chance to tell them.

Voting

Wednesday, July 30th, 2008

There isn’t anything in the Bible about voting. So it provides me with no how-to advice. Lots of what’s important to God and how to live that I can apply to my decision. But no how-to.

Abortion is a big issue with Christians. Since we’re told explicitly not to murder, that one’s easy! But politicians say what will get them elected. So, is it enough of a reason to vote for someone.

The last pro-life person I voted for had an idea to help endanger species – organize a hunt of endangered species animals and give the money raised to help endangered species. He has bullied our enemies and allies alike. He declared war on a country that didn’t attack us. He has ok’d spying on his own people. He has kept people for years without trial and ok’d torture as a questioning “technique” – leaving us with nothing to stand on when others ignore the Geneva Convention, too. Then there’s the wall of safeguards put up after the Depression that was dismantled on his watch – leading to this mortgage crisis. And this oilman has allowed record profits for oil companies while squashing  talk of global warming and alternative energy. And he has been very slow to care of his own people during crises like Katrina and even the recent tornadoes and flooding.

I’ve been listening to Obama. I don’t agree with alot of the Democratic platform, but I like alot of what he says and the way he handles himself under all the pressure. The things he says remind me of Lincoln, Kennedy and Reagan. We have fallen so far as a nation. He talks about rebuilding – rebuilding our reputation in the world and with each other.

There are 98 days left until the election. Pro-life is important, but I wonder, is it enough?

Wars and Things

Monday, May 12th, 2008

Poor Muffy has had a terrible morning. The county decided today was the perfect time to cut the grass around the pond next to our house. And I was vacuuming inside at the same time.

She has always been sure that the mowers were going to swallow her up. And the kitty-eating vacuum tries to get her even more often. Having to deal with both conspiracies at once, she must have thought war had been declared!

Speaking of wars and things, I’ve been thinking about President Bush’s legacy. They talk alot about that now that he’s nearing the end of his term. I hear talk about him being the worst President in history. They complain about his energy policy and how little he seems to care about his own people caught in natural disasters. And I personally get upset with his suggestions to “help” endangered species.

But what worries me most – I don’t hear anyone talking about. He changed the rules. He has now made invasion legitimate if you “feel threatened.” The US has always reacted to something tangible – like Pearl Harbor or Afghanistan sheltering bin Laden – not to feelings.

I know – he said there was evidence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq – but there were counselors who told him that evidence was wrong. It was just convenient evidence. He heard what he wanted to hear.

I wonder how it all will look years from now. Can the damage be undone? Who will make use of the new rule next? Lord have mercy on our nation.

“Or suppose a king is about to go to war against another king. Will he not first sit down and consider whether he is able with ten thousand men to oppose the one coming against him with twenty thousand?” (Luke 14:31)
For judgment is without mercy to one who has shown no mercy. (James 2:13)
Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety. (Proverbs 11:14)