Monday, October 31, 2005

Martin's Words for Today?

As I read through the 95 Theses of Martin Luther today I noticed several that may be applied to our current context. Our battle is not against the Pope and his efforts to build a basilica but Luther's words may be applied to our current situation.

For instance, number 54 on the list states:

A wrong is done to the Word of God when in the same sermon an equal or a longer time is devoted to indulgences than to God's Word.

I understand that Luther was writing against a corrupt church but I wonder what he would have written about the church today that does not preach the Word of God. What type of statements would be nailed to our church doors? Sure, we aren't selling indulgences (hopefully) but is the Word of God faithfully taught from our pulpits? On Sunday morning is the time devoted to music, fellowship and drama rather than on the preaching of the Word of God? Even if the sermon is lengthy, are our pastors teaching the Word or are they telling emotional stories to make us feel good? The allotment of time spent on the Word of God during a Sunday morning worship service speaks volumes to the devotion of the church.

To what are we devoted? What would Luther say to us?

A wrong is done to the Word of God when in the same sermon an equal or longer time is devoted to _______________ than to God's Word.

What say ye?

31 October 1517

Friday, October 28, 2005

Skating is Good for Health

One of the great things about small town life is the fact that most small towns hold on to things that larger towns have long since abandoned. The town in which we live still has a roller rink.

A few weeks ago I mentioned to the young adult small group from our church that I would like to go roller skating. Every Thursday night the group gathers together and we walk through the bible. Recently we have been studying the book of 1 John. At least one person in the group has heard something I have said because this week the group surprised me and took me roller skating to show their appreciation. Sure, I wish they would remember things from our studies but that's a different topic.

Have any of you been to a roller rink recently - I mean the old style rinks with wooden floors and carpet-covered contrete walls that assist the skater in important things like stopping? Let me tell you...they have not changed since the last time you entered a rink in 1984. There was a disco ball in the middle of the rink. We played games like limbo and four corners - the game in which the object is to race to a corner of the rink when the music stops. They didn't do the couple skate, which was fine with me because my beautiful wife was not with me. They didn't play any Lionel Ritchie or John Astley.

I encourage you to take advantage of the roller rink nearest you. After all, skating is good for health.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

One Reason to Celebrate Halloween

Is Halloween all that bad? This is a picture from Halloween 2004. If we did not celebrate Halloween we would have no acceptable day to dress up like our favorite super heroes. Knowing that Spidey-Dog and Super-Boy are here to protect us from witches and goblins should give us peace of mind.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Tis' the Season...

This is my favorite pumpkin picture.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Norsk Høstfest - Scandinavian?

"Norsk Høstfest, North America’s largest Scandinavian Festival, is celebrating its 28th year, starting the evening of October 11th-15th in Minot, North Dakota. Tens of thousands of people attend the event annually to celebrate and partake in the Scandinavian culture and entertainment.
Over 200 internationally recognized artisans, craftsmen and chefs participate. The experience is an eclectic array of contemporary and traditional. The cuisine as well as the clothes, art and jewelry are authentic, fine quality and exquisitely Nordic."

As I browsed through the Festival web site I came across a few of the headlining musical acts. I don't know much about heritage or the origin of names but I sure don't remember some of these people as Scandinavian.

Wednesday & Thursday - Randy Travis
I guess Mr. Travis could be Scandinavian but the dark hair is a bit out of place.

Friday - Merle Haggard
Good ol' Merle may be Scandinavian. His hair is certainly lighter than the above musician. Merle could be a deviation of Mjerle.

Wednesday & Thursday - Charlie Pride
Now wait just a minute! How did he get in the mix? There are several reasons why I don't think Mr. Charles Pride is Scandinavian. Do I really have to go into the reasons? I suppose he could dye his hair black. He may have changed his name from Bjøro Haaland to be more country music friendly. Would you purchase a country music album from a man named Bjøro Haaland? Probably not.

I did some CSI style research into the Pride Family tree and found a photo of Mr. Pride's great-great-grandmother, Ingrid Pride.

For more information about the Norsk Høstfest entertainment
click here! There are some interesting entertainers. Literally thousands of people from all over the world travel to Minot, North Dakota for this rip-roarin' week of Scandinavian Shin-diggin.' If you are planning the trip, make sure to stop by Rugby,NorthDakota, the geographical center of North America. You are so jealous!

Friday, October 07, 2005

Name the Black Baby

Now that we know the flavor of the Black baby-to-be, we are accepting name ideas. If you have a name idea please post it to the comments. We will reveal the winner at the day of birth.

Names we have already considered:

1. Jett
2. Coal
3. Ivan Brandon (initials only)

Thursday, October 06, 2005


Luckily our coffee pot had just finished brewing when the electricity died yesterday morning at 8:07 AM. My wife, son and dog spent most of yesterday in my office. Rob, our very giving friend, allowed us to crash at his place last night. He is from Georgia. Our discussion centered around the fact that this much snow in October is just WRONG!
Our power was restored at 2:03 this afternoon and we are thankful. There is only so much one can do on a gas camping stove inside a small house.

Things we made with our camping stove included hot chocolate, warm milk for our boy, grilled cheese sandwiches and vegetable soup. Every now and again I would sneak in a hand-warming from the blue flame. Ahh, warm hands and asphyxiation.

We are thankful for electricity. In the words of He-Man "I have the power." (echo, echo, echo)

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Inches of Snow and Boy Parts

Yesterday Kirsten and I found out that Ezra will be a brother and not a sister. The ultrasound pictures of the boy parts were quite telling. We will have another boy in February(Lord willing).

This morning I awoke to snow flying through the air. There are about 5 inches on the ground now and we are expecting several more. It is October 5th for crying out loud. This is not right!

Isn't it funny how the title of this post makes it sound like both the snow and the boy parts are inches in length? 'Inches' refers to the snow and not the boy parts.