Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Unexpected bits of joy

I enjoy seeing the little things around me that are funny, quirky or sweet.  Here are two examples that I have stumbled upon in the last couple days.

Every week I buy my eggs from a family at our school.  Last week, I opened up my carton to see a tiny Valentine!

Below is a poster from my favorite coffee shop in Denver.  Fun.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

What is love?

For people that know me, it rarely comes as a surprise that I offer my opinion on just about everything.  However, it may come as a surprise that I do not feel particularly strong one way or another about Valentine's Day.  I get a kick out of "St Hallmark's Day", and generally frown at wild and rampant consumerism, but I don't really mind Valentine's Day.  In fact, because red is my favorite color and I love chocolate perhaps more than any other food, I kind of like the holiday.  I have spent a lot of Valentine's Days in relationships, and a lot of Valentine's Days single, so I don't attach much importance to it in that regard.  Frankly, if you are truly in love shouldn't every day be like Valentine's Day?  (and shouldn't I be writing Hallmark cards instead of grant proposals?) 

Sometimes people try to garner sympathy by drawing attention to their single status on the so-called day of love.  Or try to feel good about being single by going on "dates" with their friends or sisters or dog, et al.   Whatever you need to do for self-empowerment is fine by me, but please don't drag Jesus into your romantic self-involvment.  

This morning in my facebook newsfeed was a peculiar little gem from a high school friend.  Her status from yesterday was "Happy Valentine's Day everyone!  Jesus is my Valentine and He made me feel loved and beautiful today!"  Great.  Congratulations.  Happy for you.     Excuse me while I go pull my hair out, one painful strand at a time.  Jesus is not your boyfriend.  It is kind of early in the day for deep theological pondering, so I will climb down off my soapbox.  But before I go...

I am trying really hard not to be judgmental, but this is Bad Theology.  Reducing Jesus to the level of a junior high boyfriend is sick and kind of arrogant.  It puts Jesus into a box, assumes that you know the way Jesus operates, and that Jesus' goal is to make you feel good about yourself because you don't have a boyfriend.  Ick.  While Jesus might indeed be doing that (I have no wish to speculate here), there are a few more pressing issues at hand in our world.  God loves you, but God loves everyone else too. 

This "Personal Relationship with your Lord and Savior Jesus Christ" theology is empty, leaves no room for wonder and is "me-focused" instead of "other-focused."    Faith and community with others in the name of faith frees us to love and serve one another.  That is love.  We are not called to leverage our "personal relationship" for our own gain.   It smacks a bit of the Prosperity Gospel.  But that is an entirely different discussion. 

Just my two cents...

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Another edition of things that are silly and in the news

1. Wildlife management at its finest:
Country music used to deter unwelcome bear

I run away from country music too. 

2. Lost pet found after one month:
Lost snake found after one month on subway

My favorite quote is the owner saying she will be more careful when bringing her snake out in public in th future. 

Or how about not bringing it out at all?  I can say that one of my worst nightmares would be encountering an unaccompanied boa constrictor on my commuter train.   

3. Another example of Christian love exemplified:
Mom says Church threatened to kick her out over gay blog post

I am with this mom 100%.  If her son wants to wear a dress, and it makes him happy, let him live it up!  Aren't there bigger things to worry about?  Her son chose to dress up as Daphne from Scooby Doo for Halloween and she chose to support him in that.  Her church barred her from communion and threatened to kick her out unless she took down her blog post.  Seriously, shouldn't we be worried about fighting AIDS or hunger or something? 

4. Latest wrinkle in the healthcare debate
GOP at it again...
Abortion funding for rape victims

I have been pretty outspoken in my criticism of the anti-choice lobby.  I don't agree with a lot of what they argue, but I can at least respect where they are coming from,  however this latest wrinkle in the healthcare debate is a new low.  The first link describes the proposed legislation, and the second is a video satire from The Daily Show. 

5. And what post with my commentary on the news would be complete without something about Sarah Palin?
Denver group cancels Sarah Palin appearance because of unspecified "security concerns"

Dear Sarah Palin, please don't ever go away. 

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Ice's stark beauty

I think that there is really profound beauty in the starkness of ice crystals.  Even when they happen to be accumulating INSIDE my house which is where these pictures were taken.