Wednesday, December 17, 2008

So here's a question...

When you hear the phrase "spiritual but not religious" what do you hear?

Further, define "spiritual", define "religious", define "faithful".

I am stewing in this right now and would love to hear other thoughts.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Historic Election - What's Next?

On November 4, 2008 the United States of America elected Barack Obama to be the 44th president of the United States. This was a historic election on all counts - with the primaries and Hillary Clinton (a female) and Barack Obama (an African-American) running, and then with the General Election with Barack Obama running on the democratic ticket, and John McCain, with Sarah Palin (a female) running on the republican ticket. No matter the results of the election, it was one for the history and record books.

Now we sit and wait, as the media begins to hone its attention on the new incumbents, to see what this new chapter in American history will bring. The imaginations of many people have been running wild - from a horrid, ridiculous picture of what the US will look like in 2012 after Obama has been President by Dr. James Dobson, to tales of Fairytale Land predicted by very fantastical folks who at times sound as though they are smoking something they shouldn't be.

But the reality is, as with all elections and incumbents, we don't truly know. We live life one day at a time. So to put forward fantasy (for the good or the bad) pictures of what will be is both a waste of time and an attempt to distort the true present right here and now.

Right now we are in a position of tough economic times, of war, of human rights issues (see Uighurs story), and of failing education. All of these, each of these, and so much more will not change the day Obama begins to serve his four years in office. However, maybe with a focus on mutual respect and cooperation we could make this election and the days that follow truly one for the history books. When partisan politics, special interest lobbies, and simple bureaucratic nonsense gets put to the side and authentic and meaningful work for the people and the place of America is done.

This is my post-election prayer - I hope you will join me.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Movie Review - Fire Proof

SAVE your money! SAVE your time! Don't go to see the newly released movie, Fire Proof.

This movie, produced by Alex Kendric, starring Kirk Cameron (remember him from Growing Pains?) portrays the struggle of a young married couple who have drifted apart. The beginning of the movie shows some quite violent screaming matches between the husband and wife. Later, the father of the son offers some help as he conveyed that he wanted a divorce (although he didn't say he wanted one, but that his wife was "doing" this - it was all her fault.). The father tells him to give it 40 days and to follow what was written in a leather-bound book, the Love Dare, he gives him.

So he begins - although it appears he is only going through the motions. Through out the experience we see his relationship with a colleague, as they begin to talk faith. On the flip side we see a "weak" wife who is cuddling up to a colleague of her own, a male (who we learn later is also married). The husband finally "dives in" after he says he "wants in" - into the "Jesus club" (although that is never spoken.) There is an assumption that he "asks Jesus into his heart" and now all will be good.

In the end the husband wins the battle, but only after his wife finds the book. She asks to do this too. The happily-ever-after end scene points to the strength that is found when Christ is at the center of your marriage, when Christ is what brings you together (probably the only theological piece I did squirm with.)

In the end the message was that with Christ at the center, we all begin in the right place. All other starting places provide no real strength to withstand the "fire" of life. I get that and affirm that.

BUT, the acting was SOOOOOOOO bad! Really! I know this film was done on a great budget, but really is was BAD.

Not to mention the overarching gender issues that I had with this piece.

So save the money and the time. Imagine two young pastors in the back row gagging through the whole piece - with about 6 other people in the theater.

Give your money to the poor. Give your money to a local social service issue. Give your money to the dog walker. Or better yet, give your money to your faith community. But don't waste your money to go see this movie.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Donald Miller on Faith and Politics

Tonight my friend Kate and I ventured to Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria, VA to hear Donald Miller speak, along with the faith director of Barack Obama's campaign. I don't know what I was expecting but I was pleasantly surprised.

This wasn't a lecture, but truly a conversation. Donald spoke about his recent visits with various college groups to break the silence or unknowing around some particularly important issues, that become one issue issues for some voters. (Check out his post on his blog that describes a lot of what he spoke about tonight and throughout his "tour.")

What surprised me was how sincere he was as he simply responded to every one's questions, not from a script but from his soul, his heart, his gut. He truly seems like the kinda guy I would love to have a beer with.

And just think it was okay to talk faith and politics. It was a good day.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Growing Deep in God's Word

I have created a new devotional blog for my congregation and I invite anyone to come and check it out.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Oops - community organizing means no responsibility?

So it has been ages since I have blogged here...several other things are up and running.

I am truly tired of the of the mud-slinging and the baseless and just irrelevant trash talk that is going on with both sides of the political spectrum. At times it feels like I am back in 3rd grade with rash talk going on....and senseless bullying.

Most recently I was enraged by both McCain and Palin's misinformed (or ignorant) commentary re: community organizers. Both seemed to not "get" what community organization is all about, and the sheer and daunting responsibility that is involved with community organization.

So, rather than comment more on it, I offer a link from another blog re: the history and enormous global responsibility that community organizers have -

In the meantime, I beg, I plead, I pray that both sides of the debate could get back to the issues and needs of our country and the world, rather than dig into the personal lives of candidates children, trash talk the past and valid experience of candidates, or simply engage in the immature and disrespectful trash talk and mockery.

Please - let's get back to the issues that need to be focused on. Please!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Pampered Chef Party - Online

Hi all! I am hosting a Pampered Chef party online and want to invite you to join me.

Looking for a new kitchen gadget? Are you in search of the perfect gift for a birthday, anniversary, or wedding shower? What about Christmas being just around the corner?

Go to the following website - and check out some of these great products. When you go to place your order click on the "Order Products" button and then type in "Kim Conway" as host.

Questions - drop me a note and I'll get back to you. G

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