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Archive for December, 2009

Hey everyone, I just finished watch this movie for my tutoring class. I absolutely love tutoring by watching movies…..ha. But it seriously starts good decisions, and raises many questions about the English language. Of course, I think this movie would start so many conversations, without having to be teaching English. If you haven’t watched this movie…..you should……I think it is very important. It shows how the western world did nothing to stop the genocide in Rwanda…..and it’s important because genocide is still going on in places like Sudan and Uganda, and we need to take more action to stop it. I was trying to think about if I ever heard much about Rwanda when I was younger from the Christian community. I guess I was around 9 years old when the atrocity happened. However, I think a lot of the conservative Christian community was more concerned about boycotting Disney because they supported homosexuals, and trying to impeach Bill Clinton. I do not how priorities can get so messed up. This reminds me of a story I once read in the Book, “what’s so Amazing about Grace”, it’s a story about a popular Christian author, Tony Compolo, who was talk to students at a conservative Christian university. This is what he said:

“I have three things I’d like to say today. First, while you were sleeping last night, 30,000 kids died of starvation or diseases related to malnutrition. Second, most of you don’t give a sh**. What’s worse is that you’re more upset with the fact that I said sh** than the fact that 30,000 kids died last night.”

It talks about later how he was sent a letter from the University reprimanding him for his language. This is just an example, I think all of our priorities can be screwed up……especially mine. I can talk about all these lofty ideals, but it’s a lot to harder to live them out. I hope one day my actions will truly line up with my ideals, of course I guess this will never fully happen to any of us…..until we are perfected at the end of time. The older I get, the more and more I feel there is a call on my life to do something radical in Jesus’s plan to redeem the world. I don’t know what that is yet, but there is just something inside of me that is longing for that.

. God has chosen us, as Christians to be the messengers of his salvation and his plan to redeem the world to the perfection in which it was created. That’s why I have one problem with one of the tools used over here by some of the Christian missionaries. They pass tracts about the rapture, trying to get people to come to Jesus. Somehow I feel that it can’t be the best to introduce Buddhist people to the gospel of Christ with an escapist theology rather than that they can accept Jesus and join God’s plan of redemption to redeem the world. It is the difference between accepting Jesus to escape the world, versus accepting Jesus to help be part of the change in the world.

I’ve started reading the Book In His Steps. I remember reading the children’s version a long time ago, but it is really eye opening. The question is what does it really look to follow in the steps of Jesus? I am really looking forward to finishing the book.

We are actually leaving for Cambodia Wednesday now. I don’t know what to really expect. It looks like we are going to get to visit the orphanage now. I really hope it breaks my heart. I think we all need our hearts broken for the need all around us. If it really breaks my heart enough I might just never leave………………..  Anyways, I will write again at the end of the week when I get back from Cambodia. Hopefully, I will have lots of pictures and videos. God Bless. The quote of the day actually comes from the hymn: This is My Father’s World. We sang this song yesterday at church and it really stuck out to me. The last verse states.

This is My Fathers World, Oh, Let me ne’er forget, That though the wrong seems all strong God is the Ruler Yet, This is my fathers world, The Battle is not done. Jesus who died will be satisfied. And Earth and Heaven be one.

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Hey everyone, I have less than two weeks over here now. I have to admit I am kind of sad now. After Tomorrow, I only have one Sunday left at the Church. Tuesday we are going to Cambodia until Friday I don’t really know what to expect, but I hope it’s a wonderful experience. Tomorrow, I have to preach again. I am suppose to preach on some topic dealing with Family, so I am going to be talking about the family of God, and what the family of God should look like or what it should be know for. It narrowed it down to four characteristics: unity and peace, self-sacrifice, optimism and joy, and last of all love.

Well, I just finished this movie. I don’t think anyone can read much or watch much about Gandhi without being amazed. Its ironic how a Hindu man can show the “western Christian world” what the real teachings of Jesus look like lived out in a society. It seems ironic that it was the “Christian” Protestants of the South who wanted to oppress the Black population, or the “Christian” Calvinists in South Africa who wanted to oppress the African people, and it was “Christian Britain” who wanted to oppress the Indian people. I think we can all profess a belief, but it’s a lot harder to actually live that belief out. Maybe in a great ironic way God was for the cause of the oppressed people even if they were not Christian, even though their oppressors were “Christian”. The Old Testament prophets repeat again and again how God listens to the cries of the oppressed. Having said this I realize that Christianity is not by any means the only religion that has a history of oppression, I think almost every world religion has had evil in it’s history.  I think learning about Gandhi also makes us reexamine our stance on violence and resistance. What does it actually look like to turn the other cheek, and love your enemies? Or overcoming evil with good? We read the words in the Bible, but for some reason something keeps us from actually living that out. From our American History we have been taught that violence is ok to stop oppression and tyranny, but is it? Maybe our acceptance of violence in our history is the reason for our high violence rate today in America. I know that it is not quite that simple, and there are many more variables involved, but it is at least something to think about. I hope this doesn’t make me sound unpatriotic, but maybe our Revolutionary War wasn’t justified, maybe there was a better way.

I am a firm believer that we need to fight to end injustice here in the world. I think its part of the job of Christians, however, stopping injustice with evil is not right. The ends don’t always justify the means. We can win the battle but loose the war. Having said this, I’m not willing to accept total pacifism. For example, I can’t see any other way we could have stopped the evil of the Fascist regimes in World War II without violence. However, I really think violence should be avoided at all costs. As the Bible says, “as much as possible live peaceably with all men”. As I’ve said before, sadly in America…Christians have not been seen as the peacemakers, but that’s what we’re called to be. I think the story of Gandhi also raises some questions on the ability of man for good. I know being brought up in a Traditional Christian background, that we were always taught that men were “totally depraved”. But I think that’s only partially true, Men have a great capacity for evil, but I think men also have a great capacity for good because we are made in the image of God. I think the story of Gandhi or even Martin Luther King can show us that non-violence can work because it appeals to the oppressors goodness. I think deep inside all human beings there is a possibility for good. I can’t find settle on either side of the issue. I don’t think man is all good, and society causes man to be evil which would be the liberal point of view. However, I don’t accept the conservative point of view that men are totally depraved.  Of course, the only way that man can ever be perfected is by the grace of God and by the sacrifice of the cross. Anyways……..I’ve typed for way too long, and I know that you have better things to do than read my random thoughts. I miss you all a lot. I continue to appreciate prayers, especially this week as I go to Cambodia. God Bless. The quote of the night comes from Gandhi who said…..

Be the change you wish to see in the world.

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