Friday, September 28, 2007

Haggai the prophet

I was really struck by the fact that both yesterday and today had similar readings from this prophet. Yesterday dealt entirely with encouraging the Jewish People to rebuild the temple after their Babylonian Exile and today was meant to encourage them to continue the great rebuilding project.

Both readings were meant to encourage the people to keep building despite frustrations. Yesterday, the frustration was that they wondered if it was worth it. Is it worth rebuilding because

"You have sown much, but have brought in little;
you have eaten, but have not been satisfied;
You have drunk, but have not been exhilarated;
have clothed yourselves, but not been warmed;
And whoever earned wages
earned them for a bag with holes in it."

Translation: You built houses and had a great living and then it was torn asunder by the Babylonians. You probably feel like a failure.

Solution: You should build the house of the Lord so that God will be on your side as you rebuild your house. Worry about God before you worry about yourself.

Then, today, people are looking around and realizing things aren't in their former glory. The Temple, especially, is nowhere close to where Solomon intended it.

"Who is left among you
that saw this house in its former glory?
And how do you see it now?
Does it not seem like nothing in your eyes?"

Haggai reminds the people that God owned all the gold and silver that made that building in the first place. The real treasure in it is the glory of the Lord, the divine presence (Hebrew Shekinah) that will be there.

God wants, in both readings, to encourage his people not to give up when things seem hopeless. We all need to hear this and hear God say this to us.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

I can't get this out of my craw...

Last night, Dr. Alveda C. King, niece of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Director of African American Outreach for Gospel of Life, spoke here at Iowa State. I heard it was a great speech but was unable, personally, to attend. I was a little disturbed to learn in this article that Dr. King was "disinvited" by the principal of one that she was scheduled to give in Des Moines. Here's a quote from the above article...

“Of course for public schools, any time there’s any discussion of a controversial issue like sex, religion, in the school, we want to give our parents the option of asking that their student not attend,” said Danielson, who reviewed a copy of the presentation this week. “Quite a bit of it does talk about civil rights, but there is a connection to morals and that’s the part... it was scheduled to take place during the school day, cutting into class time, and we just thought it was best to cancel it.”

I'm not convinced that the fact that there were moral statements involved was enough to get the principal to abandon this speech. There are rumors that a certain abortion advocate pressured her to cancel the thing and that Planned Parenthood, the industry leader of prenatal murder in this country, got its way. My understanding is that Dr. King points out the connection between Margaret Sanger's (founder of P.P.) own racist agenda (she advocated abortion to get rid of the less desirable members of society, which she connected to race) and the presence of Planned Parenthood in lower income areas of society.

It seems deas are never dangerous...until they thwart the opinions of the left. Then we need to shut them up.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

A funny, pointless song

I love dogs. But, I heard this song on a new internet radio station and thought it was hilarious.

Again, I love dogs. But, seriously funny.

by Fred Eaglesmith

Well, hello, neighbor. I been meaning to talk to you.
I been putting it off. It's something I gotta do.
I been living with a secret. Been keeping me awake.
There's just something I gotta say:

CHORUS: I shot your dog. He was on my property.
I thought he was a coyote, on the run.
I been missing some chickens, so I pulled the trigger.
I feel so bad 'bout what I done.

You don't have to say nothin'. I can tell how you feel.
I'd feel the same if it was me.
I'm awfully sorry. If I could make it up to you
In any way, tell me what to do. CHORUS

Got an old coon hound. If it'll make you feel better,
She's comin' in next week. You get the pick of the litter. CHORUS