Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Stick a fork in me

I don't like days like today. I just can't think; can't focus; my mind is all over the place unsettled.

I don't particularly care for country living in the first place, but especially when there are snow storms. Jane made it to work this morning, but from listening to the weather people I'm not all that confident in her being able to make it home tonight. But you know how they can exaggerate things, so that just leaves me with this big uneasy feeling. I would prefer the big easy.

One of the other things I hate about days like this are worrying that the power will go out. Not that it's all that cold, but when you rely on a well and the power goes out... then you no longer have any water. I have filled some buckets and stuff, which will be enough to flush the toilets for awhile.

And besides the weather people doing their best to freak us all out, yesterday was just not a good day all around. I actually had to hide a friend on facebook - only the second person I've done that to. What makes it difficult is that this was sort of one of my early mentors. He was a pastor long before I ever thought about it, and someone that I always looked up to and respected. We just reconnected not too awful long ago, and now I'm wondering if that was a good thing. I suppose if I could just 'let things go' it would be fine. Why can't I just let things go? I want to, but... there are just some things that really wrankle my feathers. I've always known this person was very conservative - spiritually and politically. And he is just so stinking vocal about it. Like, I don't care that he is - to each his own - but I don't like having my face rubbed in it all the time. Although I probably do the same thing from the other side. I don't know. I hope not. Anyway, yesterday he was talking about how non-bipartisan he is; how he is totally 'pro-life' and anything less is 'pro-choice.' And the way he says it makes it sound like you can't possibly be a Christian if you're pro-choice. I thought about commenting, but didn't think it would do anybody any good. But... I wonder... so does 'Pro-Life' mean that you are against abortion, the death penalty, and war... regardless of any circumstances??? Or does it just mean you're a republican? I think for most people it just means they are against abortion. And not that I am for it, but... I mean, for the life of me, I can't figure out how people can be so over-the-top 'Pro-Life' but at the same time support the death penalty and war. What they really mean is they are 'pro-unborn-life.' And that's fine, but don't make it out that you are pro LIFE then. And, I know, they say it's about "innocent" life. Well, so there have never been any people executed who were innocent? And who gets to decide who's innocent or guilty; who gets the death penalty or doesn't? And, geez, no innocents have ever been killed in war??? Get real. But, I know, they say it's about the "greater good." Well, so if the greater good works for war, why does it not work in cases of abortion? Or who gets to decide what the greater good is? And greater good for whom? And.... man, it gives me a frickin' headache. I am certainly FOR life... but I am pro-all-of-life. And I also know that it's not just an easy black-and-white answer in any circumstance. It's not always what's good vs. what's bad. Sometimes there are harder choices to make. And, yes, there are always choices. Anyway...

So, I was planning to write my sermon today. I know what text I would like to use; have a basic idea. I just can't calm my brain down enough to concentrate though. I keep seeing the snow out the window, and thinking about this, thinking about that...

I did finish the book of Nouwen's writings yesterday. Can't decide what to start on now. I just received 'Introverts In The Church'... and I've got '30 Days to Understanding the Bible' which might do me good... and 'Surprised By Hope' is still staring me down... and 'Jesus For President'... and 'New Light From Old Stories'... and, oh man, there is a whole pile of other books. Sometimes I think it's hopeless.

At least I did accomplish one thing today. Our internet went out last night, and I called it in this morning and I was actually the guinnea pig for them to get things up and running again. I spent more time on the phone than I wanted, but was glad to have it back. I would really be going nuts if I was snowed in alone and didn't have internet either.

Well, I've cancelled our council meeting for tonight. And the Illini are on tv again tonight, but they play at Wisconsin. I was actually thinking it would be good that I had a meeting so I had an excuse not to watch it. I have a feeling it will not be good. But, you know, I can't 'not' watch it if it's on. That would be insane.

Maybe some tomato soup for lunch will help. Thank God for these individual microwavable cans too. I can dig it.

Oh yes, and I have a new blog title again. Yeah... whatever.

Peace out; and in.


Jim said...

I appreciated your comments on life...good to know I'm not alone in my ethical questions...

dan horwedel said...

Yes, it would be so much easier to just believe things were true because we wanted to. Unfortunately it seems some people think the mere existence of "ethical questions" equates to a lack of ethics. Which is not true. imho.

Jim said...


Pastor D said...

In churches which follow a lectionary this coming Sunday is the last Sunday in Epiphany with the Transfiguration as the Gospel reading. We go up to the Mountain of glory and then down with Him through the valley of Lent. Ash Wednesday next week!

Jim said...

I agree with your confusion about how someone can be "pro-life" and not be against the death penalty and war. And as Christians, isn't the whole point that there isn't any such thing as an "innocent," after the fall? I could rant a while on this, but it's your blog so I will just say I concur.

Brook said...

I've been having some similar debates with fellow workers here in Thailand and am trying to learn how to not step in and have the conversation at all. More often than not it does little more than tick me off and bring further division between us. Which sucks really... I love your comment in the comment section about the existence of "ethical questions" equating to the lack of ethics.

Sometimes I am really encouraged by the Church and her people. Other times and am not at all... These past few weeks has been one of the later times...

dan horwedel said...

Pastor D - yes, I too follow the lectionary. Though somewhat loosely; I'm not tied to it.

Jim L. - Rant all you like, my friend. :)

Brook - yes, the further division does suck (as well as the frustration). Hang in there, man, you're doing a fine job in my book.

dudleysharp said...

The death penalty is a tough topic. Please review:

"Death Penalty Support: Modern Christian Scholars"

"Pope John Paul II: Prudential Judgement and the death penalty"

"The Death Penalty: More Protection for Innocents"

"Killing equals Killing: The Amoral Confusion of Death Penalty Opponents"

"The Death Penalty: Neither Hatred nor Revenge"

"The Death Penalty: Not a Human Rights Violation"

"Sister Helen Prejean & the death penalty: A Critical Review"

"At the Death House Door" Can Rev. Carroll Pickett be trusted?"

dudleysharp said...

Innocence and Deterrence in the Death Penalty Debate
Dudley Sharp, contact info below

"Cameron Todd Willingham: Another Media Meltdown", A Collection of Articles

"The Innocent Executed: Deception & Death Penalty Opponents"

"The Exonerated: Are Any Actually Innocent?"

"The Death Penalty: More Protection for Innocents"

The 130 (now 139) death row "innocents" scam

"A Death Penalty Red Herring: The Inanity and Hypocrisy of Perfection", Lester Jackson Ph.D.,

23 recent deterrence studies finding for deterrence, Criminal Justice Legal Foundation,

"Deterrence and the Death Penalty: A Reply to Radelet and Lacock"

"Death Penalty, Deterrence & Murder Rates: Let's be clear"

"Sister Helen Prejean & the death penalty: A Critical Review"

"At the Death House Door" Can Rev. Carroll Pickett be trusted?"

Sincerely, Dudley Sharp
e-mail sharpjfa@aol.com, 713-622-5491,
Houston, Texas

Mr. Sharp has appeared on ABC, BBC, CBS, CNN, C-SPAN, FOX, NBC, NPR, PBS , VOA and many other TV and radio networks, on such programs as Nightline, The News Hour with Jim Lehrer, The O'Reilly Factor, etc., has been quoted in newspapers throughout the world and is a published author.

A former opponent of capital punishment, he has written and granted interviews about, testified on and debated the subject of the death penalty, extensively and internationally.

JAH said...

Questions...questions... Maybe if we all took some time to really question and think about what we believe in while listening to others we could all learn so much more. Even if we come up with the same opinion - we would be the wiser for it.