Archive for August, 2011

1. Sorry about the writing drought here. I’ve been working on books, for one thing, which has been taking just about as much typing as this body knows how to handle, and is pretty well using up most of my mind power as well. Regarding the books, I’m still just working on getting the work of the past eleven or twelve years polished, finalized, and published, in trade paperback as well as ebooks.

I spent many years making news stories fit on a page. I’d forgotten how much work it takes to make content fit a physical series of set-sized pages. Yay, ebooks.

2. Having said ‘yay, ebooks,’ I have to admit that having physical books in my hand is satisfying in ways that ebooks don’t touch. For that matter, working on proof copies of my own books has been a kick. It’s a lot of work, but it’s a kick.

3. We are having a blockbuster year for dragonflies. Last night, walking to the neighbor’s house along a lane about a fifth of a mile long, there were dragonflies perched on top of corn plants on one side of me, and dragonflies perched on the barbs of a barbed wire fence on the other side of me. They were thickly perched, both sides of the road, for most of the whole walk. I can’t fathom how many dragonflies there must be around here, just now.

4. A friend asked me the other day if the church I went to sang hymns, because a friend of hers is looking for a new church, after her present pastor decided to chuck hymns and go with praise songs to supposedly draw in young people. As it happens, I’m still church hopping/hunting myself, but the church I’ve attended the last few weeks does use a hymnal (two of them, actually), and doesn’t blast us out with over-amplified music, for which I am definitely grateful. But, you know, it’s not really about the hymns versus praise songs, in most cases. In most cases, it’s about the fact that churches that decide to become ‘seeker friendly’ tend to get rid of the very things that Christians, or even pre-Christians-on-the-edge-of-converting, are seeking. Plus, if a church thinks dumbing down the music and cranking up the decibels will draw young people, what does that say about their opinion of young people? Or their opinion of the gospel?

5. More on what’s wrong with many churches, and ‘Christians,’ today: No Discipline, No Disciple. Read the whole thing, please, but here’s a taste:

Lunde explains the dilemma: our youth are embracing a Christianity which falls far short of the truth. Why is this? It is partly because their parents and other adult models have also fallen for this watered-down version. Instead of true Christianity, they are practicing what has been dubbed as moralistic therapeutic deism (MTD). This “narcissistic” version of Christianity “requires little from its adherents.”  When the watching world sees this “insipid” – pointless and sterile – religion modeled, it develops a “pervasive disillusionment” about Christianity and its claims. This should cause a great concern among practicing Christians, not only because Christianity is always just a generation away from extinction, but even more importantly because of all the souls who are lost when truth is not being taught and embraced.

6. Another reason I haven’t been blogging much, is that I’m more active on Facebook and Twitter these days. I dragged my feet getting signed up at both those places, but I find them useful. And fun. You can find me here, here, and here.

7. You might check to see if there’s a 40 Days for Life vigil coming to a location near you this fall. This next campaign runs September 28 – November 6. There are 297 confirmed locations so far, with “46 first-time campaigns – including locations in Puerto Rico, Argentina and Germany.” Please help get the word out, in any case. Thanks. This is a matter of life and death, you know.

7 Quick Takes Friday is hosted by Conversion Diary. Go on over and meet folks, why dontcha? I’ve met some wonderful people through Conversion Diary – and the blog hostess, Jennifer Fulwiler, is delightful, intelligent, articulate, and funny. (And modest enough I’ve probably just made her blush. Oh, well.)

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