What Really Matters

This blog is of my musings…my “nibbles and bits.” As such, it’ll sometimes touch on “third rail” topics. I ask for your charity and forgiveness if ever I offend you (or worse). No matter what subjects inspire my posts, in the end, you matter more to me…and love matters most:

1 Corinthians 13:4–8, 13 (NIV):

Jesus

4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails.
13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

Even if we disagree, you have my love.

2023 New Year’s Resolutions

2023 New Year’s Resolutions

Happy New Year!

May 2023 be the best year ever for you and yours.

Right or wrong, illogical or not, New Year’s Day is a good time to make resolutions. Yeah, maybe it is an excuse to procrastinate (e.g. Why didn’t you start doing X or Y months ago?) Maybe we are setting ourselves up for failure (when we resolve to do something we’ve failed at before, e.g. a diet). Maybe we are just fooling ourselves.

But, isn’t it better than giving up?

Yes. It. is.

Assuming I’m correct, how should we choose what makes the list?

As 2022 came to a close, I realized that I have been prioritizing wrongly. That how my spend my time does not reflect what is really important. That modern blessings have become a curse.

As such, this year I have only two resolutions:

  1. To love the Lord my God with all my heart and all of my soul and all of my mind
  2. To love my neighbor as myself

(See Matthew 22:34-40.)

In the “Which are better, systems or goals?” debate, I would argue those are a system. I also have goals for 2023 (e.g. to slim down, to learn to play the keyboard, to become proficient with Python), but I intend to weigh how I spend what little time I have left on this earth by those two measures.

In line with #2, loving you as myself, I ask you to consider choosing the same two resolutions, definitely so if you are a Christian.

For the non-Christian, I would suggest that everybody worships something, whether we admit (or recognize) it or not, and that may mean it better you just have #2. If what you worship makes #2 impossible or difficult, then you are undeniably devoted to the wrong god.

For the Christian, if you live in a country like the United States, it is likely your blessings are a curse too. Yes, we are saved by grace through faith, not by our own works (Ephesians 2:8-9). However, the Lord our God makes it clear through His Word that “easy believism” is bogus and may instead indicate you don’t truly believe. (Take a look at the Epistle of James, John 14:15, and Luke 6:46 to start.)

A simple barometer of our faith is how we spend our “elective” time. Look at the things you do every day. Look at how much time you spend on each item.

Then ask yourself if you really put God first and love your neighbor as yourself…

…while thoughtfully considering the wise words of a non-Christian, physicist Richard Feynman: “The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool.”

Back to the non-Christian, please reconsider who you worship. I explain more on my Gospel Claims site.

To everyone, I truly wish the best this year for you and yours. At the end of my thought for todays, I end with, “I love you, see you again soon.” I come up short on loving you as myself…and I definitely come up short on putting God first. But, I am working on it and committed to those resolutions.

Will you join me?

P.S. In addition to the image above (full-sized version), feel free to use these two 2023 calendars to help remind you of what is really important:
Read More

Band to Check Out: Walking After U

P.S. This is the video that introduced them to me…

“Now to Him…”

“Now to him who is able
to keep you from stumbling
and to present you blameless
before the presence
of his glory with great joy,
to the only God,
our Savior,
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
be glory,
majesty,
dominion,
and authority,
before all time
and now and forever.
Amen.”

Jude 24-25 (ESV)

Jude 24-25

In Today’s Edition of My Shocked Face (Not)

Kind ‘a seems to explain their silence about China’s human rights abuses and their treatment of Ener Kanter Freedom, eh?

“Anatomy of an Evangelical Scandal”

What this article suggests wouldn’t be so sad if it wasn’t so true:

The point of Mefferd’s article is that when big name evangelical leaders fall, they (through multiple machinations) are not truly held accountable and often stay in the pulpit (or return quickly).

God can forgive anything. However, if you are a minister (or Christian leader) and you fall certain ways, it permanently disqualifies you from getting back in the pulpit.

Now the overseer is to be above reproach, faithful to his wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach,

– 1 Timothy 3:2, NIV

For an overseer, as God’s steward, must be above reproach. He must not be arrogant or quick-tempered or a drunkard or violent or greedy for gain,

– Titus 1:7, ESV

Certain sins make it so we are (permanently) no longer “above reproach” and, thus, disqualified. If we repent, we are forgiven, but that does not wash away the disgrace we brought upon our ministry and, worse, upon the name of the One we serve.

“Why We Love the Church”

Just posted this on my new AI: Alan Intelligence blog:

“For I am sure…”

For I am sure that
neither death nor life,
nor angels nor rulers,
nor things present
nor things to come,
nor powers,
nor height nor depth,
nor anything else in all creation,
will be able to separate us
from the love of God
in Christ Jesus our Lord.

– Romans 8:38-39 (ESV)

Scripture verse

Hmmm…

Is this, at least mostly, true? (In no way am I sharing it to say what was done to Native Americans was “okay.”)

Why Are They Asking for Amnesty?

Why are they asking for amnesty? Perhaps because nothing will prevent things like this from finally coming out:

The gotcha is that they cannot claim ignorance. People literally warned of these results and were treated horribly by those who smugly claimed “science” was on their side.

P.S. The underlying story that generated the article above is this: