Friday, April 02, 2004


I have been unable to do much in the way of blogging the last few days, by choice and by necessity. The week at work has been a very busy one, with many large projects needing my close attention...hence the necessity. The choice is mine in that I have needed a break from the news of the day, mostly for the benefit of my soul. It is easy to get caught up in the news of the world, so much of which is horribly depressing even to the most optimistic amongst us. Today I'm going to dip my toe in the waters...but not very deeply. So let's begin...


ABC will air a three-hour documentary, "Jesus and Paul: The Word and the Witness," narrated by Peter Jennings, on Monday. Normally I would dismiss this pretty quickly as I have very little faith in Mr. Jenning's abilities to recognize anything having to do with Christianity, and in my admittedly jaded view see these annual forays as nothing more than a PR ploy by ABC...throwing a bone to the Christians to keep us looking to them for more. However, I may take a peek at this one. The OpinionJournal did.

The narrator returns to the first century with the words: "Jesus was from a town called Nazareth in a lush region known as the Galilee." But the background music reminds viewers that we are living in the 21st century. Instead of the mournful sounds of ancient chant we hear the pounding of drums, the strumming of guitars and the rhythmic beat of Christian rock, with lyrics such as this: "If you were faced with Him in all his glory / What would you ask if you had just one question?" And this: "What if God was one of us?" Again the message seems clear: What began in Nazareth is very much with us today.

Parts of it may be rather silly too...

We also hear from monks who tend holy places marking the sites of memorable events in biblical history (e.g., where Christian tradition believes St. Paul had the vision that led to his conversion) and from Christian clergy, some liberal, some conservative, not all, however, good choices. There is even a humorous interview with a group of Americans about what Jesus looked like. All say he had blue eyes.

So, I'll watch and see for myself I suppose. Anyone else?


Chronicling a January 1936 meeting between Mohandas Gandhi and Margaret Sanger. The subject of their conversation was contraception. Gandhi was right, and we've been paying the price (as have untold millions upon million of the unborn) ever since.

Gandhi saw in the use of contraception the potential for man’s undoing. The virtue of temperance, or brahmacharya, is needed, he felt, for man to be truly himself and to allow God to work through him. Therefore, contraception, which divorces the sexual act from its natural consequence, divides man, separating him from the meaning of his own actions. For Gandhi, contraception “simply unmans man”: “I suggest that it is cowardly to refuse to face the consequences of one’s acts. Persons who use contraception will never learn the value of self-restraint. They will not need it. Self-indulgence with contraceptives may prevent the coming of children, but will sap the vitality of both men and women, perhaps more of men than of women. It is unmanly to refuse battle with the devil.”


Sent via email by a good friend in Mississippi. I love the analogy.

Malachi 3:3 says: And he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver."

This verse puzzled some women in a Bible study and they wondered what this statement meant about the character and nature of God.

One of the women offered to find out the process of refining silver and get back to the group at their next Bible Study.

That week, the woman called a silversmith and made an appointment to watch him at work. She didn't mention anything about the reason for her interest beyond her curiosity about the process of refining silver.

As she watched the silversmith, he held a piece of silver over the fire and let it heat up. He explained that in refining silver, one needed to hold the silver in the middle of the fire where the flames were hottest as to burn away all the impurities.

The woman thought about God holding us in such a hot spot then she thought again about the verse that says: And he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver."

She asked the silversmith if it was true that he had to sit there in front of the fire the whole time the silver was being refined.

The man answered that yes, he not only had to sit there holding the silver, but he had to keep his eyes on the silver the entire time it was in the fire. If the silver was left a moment too long in the flames, it would be destroyed.

The woman was silent for a moment. Then she asked the silversmith, "How do you know when the silver is fully refined?" He smiled at her and answered, "Oh, that's easy - when I see my image in it."

If today you are feeling the heat of the fire, remember that God has His eye on you and will keep watching you until He sees His image in you.


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