I spent a couple hours arranging my upcoming book and, so far, it looks like I’ll have a 175-200 page general Introduction to the Baha’i Faith for Christian Readers. Actually, I’ll try to make it accessible to any reader, but it will be written from my perspective as an Evangelical Christian — I’ll be presenting the material in a semi-autobiographical fashion. There are a couple of reasons for this approach, but the most practical consideration for presenting this material to someone new to the Baha’i Faith is where we find ourselves in history — we are entering in on the “ground floor” of Baha’i history and development as a distinct religion.… Read the rest
Many men wish their handwriting was better and I’m one of them. This primer, How to Improve Penmanship, at The Art of Manliness, “will teach you everything you need to know about improving your cursive penmanship.” At least, that’s their claim. I have this notion that by training my mind, eyes, and hands to improve my penmanship, other skills I’m cultivating will follow. There are indications that writing by hand improves your cognitive abilities, but I’m hoping my art and creative writing will also benefit. We shall see. One specific writing skill I would like to acquire is the draftsman or architectural style of writing.… Read the rest
I have to concur with the writer, that “racking up mile after mile is difficult, mind-expanding, and hypnotic—just like putting words down on a page.” But, it’s also energizing and freeing to be out on the road, around town or through the woods, working out ideas and problems, step by step, mile by mile.
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Freedom, consciousness, and wildness: Running offers writers escape with purpose. When confronted with “structural problems” in her writing as the result of a “long, snarled, frustrating and sometimes despairing morning of work,” Joyce Carol Oates would ease her writing blocks with afternoon runs. For Oates and many other writers, running is process and proves especially useful for the type of cloistered, intensive work they do.
I came across a quote which answers that question and may give you some insight into why I do whatever I do:
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Our calling is to enjoy God as well as glorify Him. Real fulfillment relates to the purpose for which we were made, to be in reference to God, to be in personal relationship with Him, to be fulfilled by Him, and thus to have an affirmation of life. Christianity should never give any onlooker the right to conclude that Christianity believes in the negation of life. Christianity is able to make a real affirmation because we affirm that it is possible to be in personal relationship to the personal God who is there and who is the final environment of all He created.
This was something I posted back in 2005 and I thought it might be worthwhile to look back to where we’ve been and see how far we’ve come.
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It has long been a dream of mine to redecorate our home in a modern theme, but it looks like that will have to wait for another 5-10 years. In the interim, we have decided upon a retro look and have been scouring thrift stores, garage sales and eBay for furniture and accessories from the same era as the ribbon-cutting on our home, i.e. 1961.
Today, Denise, and I were leaving a disappointing garage sale, when we happened upon a young gentleman (who happpened to be from New Zealand), standing in the driveway of his new home, next to this sectional.
The ministerial work must be carried on purely for God and the salvation of souls… They who engage in this as a common work, to make a trade of it for their worldly livelihood, will find that they have chosen a bad trade, though a good employment. Self-denial is of absolute necessity in every Christian, but it is doubly necessary in a minister, as without it he cannot do God an hour’s faithful service. Hard studies, much knowledge, and excellent preaching, if the ends be not right is but more glorious hypocritical sinning. Reverend Richard Baxter1
I’ve been blogging off and on for years, finally arriving at this moment when I can put proverbial pen to paper, in order to recount, report and reflect upon over 30 years of formal ministry as the director of two apologetic groups, Ex-Mormons for Jesus and Jude 23, as well as serving in the role of an elder (pastor or overseer) and church planter for most of that time.… Read the rest
Blogging is a dangerous business for the Christian to engage in: particularly when commenting on culture, politics, religion, art, humor, sexuality or other volatile subject matter.
One can come off sounding self-righteous and condescending, as I often do — being boorish. Then, there’s also guilt by association: “That’s fine coming from the religion that gave us the Inquisition, the Crusades and the Salem Witch Hunts.” From the other direction, you open yourself up to insults by, so-called Christians, who want to hunt down witches, launch a crusade against the infidels or turn you over to the inquisitors! Indeed:
Sufferings must be the Churches most ordinary lot, and Christians indeed must be self-denying Cross-bearers, even where there are none but formal nominal Christians to be the Cross-makers… Richard Baxter
I was studying Paul’s letter to the Romans and reached for Karl Barth’s classic commentary.… Read the rest
I just upgraded to WordPress 2.5 and it was deceptively simple. Now, I can use the Visual Rich Editor, which was not supported in earlier versions of Safari and WordPress! I actually liked coding the posts manually, but truth be told… I’m kinda sloppy and I’d have to go back and edit my posts about a million times.
Second, I can try out the latest plugins, including Akismet. That should save me even more time, not having to deal with SPAM.
Finally, I like the new look and feel… it’s almost like beginning all over again. So far, I highly recommend WordPress 2.5.… Read the rest
Now, here’s a blog I get. Jonah travels the length and breadth of America, sampling the fare from taquerias of all sizes, posting his reviews on the Burrito Blog. As of this writing, he hasn’t sampled the best yet, which can only be found at El Tepeyac. ¿Es verdad, mi familia?
Now, if you’re ever in the Los Angeles area, you want to head over to East LA and find 812 N Evergreen Ave., between Brooklyn and Wabash. El Tepayac is across the street from a large Catholic church, in a neutral zone, and there’s usually a real long line outside.… Read the rest
I think this is a first for me… I’m blogging while watching a film — Schindler’s List. I’ve already seen it once, but that was years ago. Anyway, I was thinking about getting iListen for dictation and transcription. I do most of my best thinking in the morning, while I’m commuting and doing production/deadline work. I’ve tried a cassette dictation machine ten years ago, but that just didn’t work. I started looking into iListen to use with my computer at home, comparing it to other dictation/transcription software and hardware solutions. Then, it occurred to me… I have a video iPod.… Read the rest