Monday, November 27, 2006

The greatest of these...

So, the sermon yesterday was incredible. It was a topic that was near and dear to my heart. Mostly because it is one I struggle with.

The pastor was reflecting on a couple of verses in Matthew. Specifically Matthew 22:37-39, which says "...'YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND. This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, 'YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.'"

I've been reflecting on my own favorite question, "can the world tell what I believe or that I believe or ANYTHING about me by the way I act?" or maybe "what does the world think of me based on the way I act?" I'm not sure which answer is scarier. And I guess my favorite local D.J. must have been wondering the same thing lately because every morning last week the banter between songs seemed to include little messages like "the stores are crowded today so if you're heading out remember that you are a child of God and your actions should reflect that".

Which got me to thinking about all the opportunities that I miss out on to simply be nice. Oh, now, don't get me wrong. I'm basically a nice person. I'm the mom the teacher calls when she needs something. I'm the one who brings snacks to college when we're overloaded with homework and I can tell everybody needs a break. I don't let traffic get to me (not like there's a TON of traffic in West Michigan).

Anyway, so back to the sermon. I was listening as the pastor talked about how once we loved people (and I mean REALLY love people) the rest of the commandments fall into line. And that totally makes sense. But, it's not as easy as it sounds. Is it?

And then he pulled out the kicker. He quoted from an article written by a self-professed atheist - an article which extolled the virtues of charity. Yup, charity. The article speaks to the aftermath of Hurrican Katrina. It's from 2005, but as I search the internet I find references to the tens of thousands of volunteers who have travelled to the gulf coast. I know churches from West Michigan are still sending relief teams to lend a hand. All this as 2006 draws to an end.

So, if you're looking for proof that simply loving your neighbor can make a difference, I encourage you to go and read the article. See for yourself how love shines above all other things.

Article -

Faith Does Breed Charity

Monday, November 13, 2006

Silence is Golden


the presentation was not great. It was OK, just not great. Some of them were REALLY (and I mean REALLY) good. Ours was just OK. But, it's over and done with and the content was there, so I think our grade will be decent.

Friday night I took Princess to see the Cheetah Girls. It was 2 1/2 hours away, and as luck would have it. She got sick on the way down. Joy. Her friend (and her friend's mom) were really great and didn't complain about our couple delays. It did end up working perfectly. We walked into the venue just as the warm up act was singing. So, we didn't miss any of Vanessa Anne Hudgins or Cheetah Girls. Our seats were good, the venue was a performance hall, not an arena, so there wasn't really a bad seat in the house, but ours was the last row before an aisle so we could step over the back of our seats to get out. And let me just tell you we NEEDED to get out! The place was not air conditioned (can you even imagine!). So, 4,000+ people in a hot room with a sick 9 year old. It was a lovely evening. We were seated near the main entrance so when we stepped out to the lobby there was lots of fresh air from the freezing outside. That seemed to make her feel a little better and we could hear the music from out there. She did make it through most of the concert, and maybe the last 1/4th we were out of the theater. She kept peaking in just to see what they were wearing. For the amount of times they changed their clothes they could have sang six more songs - ROFL. I was amazed at how many WHOLE families were there. I figured there would be lots of "one mom with a couple of girls" kind of thing, especially considering the price of the tickets. There were even a few poor brothers in the lot who you can tell were DRAGGED kicking and screaming! Poor kids. But anyway, Princess fell asleep quickly on the ride home so at least that was peaceful.

And then she was sick all weekend. But the fun doesn't end there. Her great-grandma (her dad's grandma) died on Saturday. So, he picked her up tonight to take her to the funeral (an hour away) tomorrow. Of course, she came home sick from school today - so good luck to him with that one. Hopefully by morning she'll feel better. HOPEFULLY

Did I mention her dad picked her up? This means I am sitting in an empty (quiet) house. Avoiding writing yet another paper. Eating Oreo's (no NOT double stuff - EW). Drinking Pepsi. Watching some stupid show on TV.

It's heaven.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006


I have a huge presentation tonight. It's worth a fifth of my grade, and while I'm not usually nervous about these presentations - this one is a group thing and the two people that I am working with are so much smarter than me! Which I guess is a great thing, I'm just not used to being the slow one in a group!

I've made my contributions - thankfully neither of them can do powerpoint so I got the honor of putting that together. At least I feel like I've done SOMETHING!

Of course the weather this week has decided to thaw out so my allergies have kicked back in. Last night I was up at 1, and then again at 4. Of course at 4 I couldn't get back to sleep and the last I remember looking at the clock it was 6:20 (and of course the alarm goes off at 6:50 to get Princess up and ready for school!)

Now my voice is crackling and I have an awful feeling that even if I keep my mouth shut all day I'm still not going to be able to talk much tonight. Perfect day to get no sleep and lose my voice!

Ah well, it will all work out in the end!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Another Poll

I logged onto AOL (yeah, yeah, don't even get me started. In my defense I've been using AOL since 1989 and heck - it's just a hard habit to break! I do use it less and less as the days go by, but I guess I'm just addicted to being spoon fed....Anyway!)

I logged on the other day and on the main welcome page there was a headline that went something like "President Bush says we're winning in Iraq. Tell us what you think" With a link to a page where they took a poll asking if I thought we were winning in Iraq.

Crap like this REALLY pisses me off. The media have somehow lulled us in the past 20 years into thinking we have all the facts. And that based on what we see on TV (and the few people who bother to read the newspaper) we are qualifed to make judgements on ANYTHING! Nevermind that most people can't name their Senators or Representatives in Congress - let alone find Iraq on a map!! But hell yeah, let's just change our foreign policy based on a poll of people who are getting their information from the American media. Gee, that sounds like a really great plan to me.

And speaking of the media. The Gubernatorial race here in Michigan is making me SICK to my stomach. The ads both sides are running are so obviously full of half truths, I can't bring myself to vote for either of them. On top of that (and the one that REALLY pisses me off) is our current Democratic governor has taken to running a horrid commercial about her stand on abortion, verses that of her opponent. Not even taking into account that the ad makes me want to run out and vote for the Republican, what gets me is this... Since when does the Governor have any control over the availability of abortions in Michigan? Seriously? What point does this ad serve other than to try and get stupid people to change their opinions based on some perceived injustice?

I guess it mostly angers me that the American public is content with being so ignorant of what is going on around them. I'd like to run an experiment and get an advertising campaign going on a national network. Something stupid like "profits from snow shovels linked to terrorism" and see if we can get everybody in the north to stop buying shovels to shovel their driveways. Or maybe "eating marshmallows linked to weight loss" - maybe we could get marshmallow sales up!