Saturday, December 29, 2007

Friday, December 21, 2007

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Shootings in the Mall

So, here I am struggling with the whole pain and irony of people shopping for Christmas and getting shot. Why did the police insist that they leave the store with their hands up and their shopping bags in the air? Does that mean that our possessions are so important that we have to hold onto them in the midst of such a crisis? It certainly made me think, really think of the craziness we live with in the midst of Christmas and ... yes , even in other times of the year. This consumerism seems like an addiction.

By the way- I am looking for a cheap computer for Bill and Luke (seriously):)

Gene,
Thank you for the God is a Dude video.It made me laugh,
Melis

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Just a quick thought on legacy

It occurred to me that for generations we (man kind) have been concerned with leaving our mark on the world. Making sure we leave a legacy. Now with the global focus on being green we find ourselves concerned with not leaving a mark and in some instances wiping away the marks of others.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Expecting

There's a lot of expectations in the world. We have families that are 'expecting'... there's even the book "What to Expect When You're Expecting" if you want advice on how to deal with that. The problem with most of our expectations is that we are expecting things from others, or feel burdened by the expectations placed on us. We are rarely using that word in a positive context. We have expectations from and for our jobs, schools, families, friends, coworkers, spouses, children, parents and colleagues. We hear about how our expectations are too high, or too low. How can we expect THAT of someone, we're asked? Well, don't expect them to do anything, we're told. We expect snow on some days, rain or sun on others. We expect it will get cold in the winter and warm in the summer. Some expectations, like seasonal ones (well, maybe, if you live somewhere besides Nebraska AND don't think climate change is real.) are reasonable. Others, like when you expect someone else to fix all of your problems for you, or expect your spouse to read your mind, are much less so.

We expect that God will watch out for us, that we will be held in the palm of God's hand. We expect the Spirit will move us in appropriate ways, maybe... IF we have to move at all. We expect that if we lead reasonably good lives, believe in Jesus, and go to church one hour a week that at the end of our days treading this mortal coil, we'll go to heaven. We expect that. Probably more people expect that than are willing to admit it. Some maybe without even fullfilling the "minimum requirements" listed above.

What does God expect of us? Does God expect us to treat each other respectfully and with lovingkindness? Does God expect us to be helpful, obedient, courteous, cheerful and reverent? Like a Scout Law for Christians? (for those of you who want a review: A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent.) The greatest commandment was to "Love one another as I have loved you". That's a pretty clear expectation. Not without it's challenges. On difficult days, or in trying circumstances it can be tantamount to herding cats. We have been given the ultimate in unconditional love, really. What can we do to reciprocate that? I think that in offering ourselves cheerfully (remember, I said it was NOT without it's challenges) to each other, to tasks that must be done, to acts of beauty and kindness, often where they feel undeserved, we can begin to show God that we understand and accept the expectations of us. WAIT! I think there IS a Scout Law for Christians... the Fruits of the Holy Spirit But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. How many of those have we each practiced today? If you'd like a comparison to something else maybe you've been doing instead, check out Galatians 5:19-23.

Perhaps it is even more challenging to "do unto others as you'd have done to you." Because we often stop at "Do unto others", or we confuse the language and read "Do unto others as YOU'VE HAD DONE to you". Someone cut me off in traffic? Fine! I'll show them! Someone is yelling at me? Yep, I'm gonna yell right back. I will show my affrontedness by affronting others. I will express my distaste by being distasteful. I will bomb you for bombing me. Spank you for hitting. Bite you back, or even backbite you. Quickly we're sucked into a dark downward spiral. We find that most of this behaviour only makes us feel better for about 30 seconds after the moment has passed. Then we stew, and fret, feel alone, maybe even get depressed, and we don't really even know why. We are not only isolating ourselves and distancing ourselves from the love of others, but from the love of God. Discord, afterall, is from the Latin dis- meaning asunder or away, and cord, which comes from the word for heart. Away from the heart. Away from Love. Away from God. Every time we are participating in discord, we are moving away from God. That's pretty powerful. Not what you were expecting today? Let's change our expecations to ones of accord. (That's TOWARDS the heart, for you Latin scholars). Let's EXPECT, in this season of Advent to move TOWARDS the heart, foward to Love, closer to God. While we're busy expecting Jesus, let's all cheerfully, joyfully remember what's expected of us.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Hold on, I'm about to be sincere

I think in all of my involvement in my relatively short time at NEUCC, today was the pinnacle of my enjoyment in a specific activity. We celebrated our denomination's 50th anniversary, and I was a part of the music. As the person who started the ball rolling on these "Alternative Sundays," I'm blessed with three very talented women that have chosen to join me in the music. I may have nudged this band into being in the beginning (only be announcing my intention), but it's certainly become a very collaborative process complete with meaningful friendships forming in the process. That and they all sound awesome. Kudos to my wife and friends: Jennifer, Holly, and Mary.

Holly and Melissa did a wonderful job writing the service. Much is made of the UCC's stand for social justice. These women beautifully tied this continuing struggle to our faith, to our congregation, and to our long history. It was meaningful and relevant. Nice work!

In the midwest (and in Newfoundland I'm starting to learn), it's not the custom to step back and admire your work--let along give yourself the smallest of pats on the back. We mainly try to keep our heads down and acknowledge those that came before and those that struggled along with us. Yet there are times when taking that step back is beneficial. There are times when it's necessary to look at your work and see how it stacks up and fits in with the rest of the world. Sometimes during that stretch when you're keeping your head down and tending to your business, you start to forget why you're tending to that business in the first place. You forget how initially important that task or activity was because it was your way of sharing the best parts of You with that which is Everyone Else.

A funny thing happens when you glimpse "the whole" unexpectedly. You're startled because not only are you seeing that wholeness, but you're also hit with the realization that you're standing in it. Standing in it like a river that runs up to your knees and all that's come before washes over and around you and you see that you do fit in because the water makes room. All that will ever come will eventually wash over you and around you as well.

We really don't need to ask one another to gather at the river. We've just needed to look up, wipe our brow, and see that we're already knee-deep.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Stewardship and Christmas

I'm interested in knowing people's opinions on Christmas lights. Knowing that we are in an energy crisis where even the smallest changes can and will have a major impact on our planets future, how can we justify lights for a holiday. What happened to burning candles and using things like garland, wreaths, ribbons, and bows to decorate?

Let's look at this:
http://www.ases.org/askken/2006/06-41.htm

It says that the avg person uses about 4.4 KWH (I'll use 4 KWH for my calculations) of energy on their light display and that amounts to about $13 per month (I'll assume $10 just to lower the number a bit). The current population being 301,139,947 according to google at the time of writing, and an avg household size of 2.6 ( info here).
Using that there should be roughly 115,823,056 households. We'll assume that everyone only runs it for the month of December, which we know is not true. We'll even assume that 2/3 of these households can't or won't run light displays. That leaves us with 38,221,608 households running light displays for 1 month at 4 KWH giving us a total of 152,886,433.92 KWH of power used for Christmas light displays and a rough cost of ($10 * # of households) $382,216,080. And that's using energy cost figures from last year, and we all know that energy prices keep going up. Just think what a difference could be made if everyone agreed to shut off their Christmas lights for a year and donated their $10 (or $13) to a good cause. Imagine the decrease in the carbon foot print and the increase in the longevity of our planet.

I'd be interested in seeing how the math would work out for the new LED display lights. Perhaps we could even cut the costs in half with LEDs and people could still have a serious impact with $191 million. Even if half of those people didn't want to donate their savings it'd still be 95.5 million dollars!

Okay, I'm reasonably sure I've convinced at least myself of the benefits of not running a light display so that's enough math on this topic for today. Now, I'm asking you to consider this and think seriously about not plugging the lights in and seeing what kind of a difference you can make.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

A little 'thought for the day'

Life has peaks AND valleys. If it weren't for the ups and downs, it would just be one long, flat road, and what fun is that?

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Monday, October 22, 2007

If you're coming here because we mentioned this in the bulletin....

...welcome. Please stay a while and enjoy. If you'd like to be an author on this here blog, please let me know in the comments.

Thanks!

Gene

Thursday, October 11, 2007

If you have Faith as a Morning Glory seed....

I know that isn't the scripture.

We've lived in our little house for about 4 or 5 years now. Like so many people who are excited about home ownership in the beginning, I wanted to work in the yard and plant flowers. And so I did, though if you've been to my house lately, you'd never know that. The exterior of our home is pretty shabby looking. There's the desperately overdue painting that needs to be done. There's the out of control weeds in the yard, and the gulley that we are obliged by the city or LES or whomever to maintain. Shrubs that have never known the pruning hook. Patio furniture in disrepair and unfinished projects everywhere you look.

I am not keeping good faith with my house. I did in one of those first couple of springs though, make a pledge of faith by planting flowers. I love old-fashioned favorites. I planted bachelor buttons, which have rewarded me with perennial action for a few years now in spite of the 'annual' label on the seed packet. I planted cosmos in shades of white, pink and vibrant fushcia. Those too rewarded me the next summer with a few volunteers. The Four O'Clocks that I planted with reminisces of my grandparents summer yard also sent up a handful of repeaters the next July. There were Canterbury Bells that were supposed to be biennial, but which never even set out seedlings. I transplanted hearty perennial standbys from scattered locations (The middle of the lawn, really? Not where *I* would plant iris...) to the modest reclaimed 'flowerbeds' that lay along the south foundation of our house. I moved those iris, tulips, grape hyacinth, and crocus to a place where they would be safe from the lawnmower and plodding feet. I cleared leaves and weeds from the beds. I went to the very folksy neighborhood hardware store and bought a small inexpensive trellis. And I carefully soaked and scored the seeds of two packets of morning glories. One packet of the traditional blue-violet and white variety called 'Heavenly Blue'. The other was an heirloom variety known as 'Grandpa Ott'. I planted the seeds one evening as a spring mist soaked the earth, and myself. I did not see the bumper crop of morning glories that I'd hoped to have climbing that southern wall of my dining room. There were a couple that came up, twined about half-way up the trellis, put out a few blooms and apparently ran out of steam, or whatever it is that makes them go. They scorched and died in heat of summer, but not before I was captivated by the ruby-throated deep purple Grandpa Otts. I took one fast fading bloom to the office where my coworkers marveled at it's lovely color. And when it died I didn't think too much about it after that.

2007 has felt like one blurry streak... like watching a freight train move west next to your eastbound passenger car. More than ever before, my poor yard and house have taken a backseat to the other exciting things happening in my life. Babies, it turns out, are nearly all consuming. This summer, my brother proposed an exchange of labor for using our computer, high speed access, printer, paper, etc. for his schoolwork and I readily accepted. He did some very necessary work in our yard... mostly pulling bind-weed and cutting out all the elm trees that seem to be very attracted to my flowerbeds. He was pretty thorough. I don't know how he missed one twining vine that was twirling it's way through the underbelly of my flowerbed, dancing over iris leaves and eventually climbing up the stubborn remnants of one of the cut back elms. But then I didn't notice it either until about a week and a half ago. I was on my way to a mid-afternoon appointment when I saw the beautiful flashes of plum-y purple and raspberry veining. It stopped me in my tracks. I paused with my young son in my arms to admire the lovely Grandpa Ott morning glories. Some two or three years after the seeds had been planted, and it's cousins long perished, here emerged the radiant evidence of some past labor, long dismissed as fruitless, or at least I believed it had borne all it would.

And so it is. We can never know when or what a long-ago act of faith will yield. When we become discouraged that 'things' are not happening as fast, or as big or as often as we would like, it is this kind of moment that God gives us, a tiny miracle in the grand scheme of the Universe. What kind of faith did that seed have? It was prepared for planting, but maybe it needed a little longer to work it's way through the hard outer shell of the seed. It was watered and tended, but needed time to grow. Maybe it was waiting for the right combination of moisture and temperature to venture out. It somehow escaped the weeding. Maybe it was afraid. In a time and place where it was as unexpected as rain in the desert, the morning glory acted on faith. Whether mine or it's own I will never know.

We continue to wonder about the future of the church. Imagine if you will, that my flower garden is like a church. There are perennial members... they just keep coming back season after season, Sunday after Sunday. Some like the bachelor buttons are seeds that started in our community, some like the irises and hyacinth were transplanted perennials that needed a safer place to flourish. Either way, they need very little tending to keep on growing, or even spreading! Others, like the cosmos, will come back a few times and then less and less until they don't come anymore at all. Some seeds we plant and plan for but never come to fruition. Others, like Grandpa Ott, make a false start, and then later surprise us by flowering long after we've given up hope. We must continue to act in faith. It truly is the substance of things hoped for and evidence of things not seen. Without that faith, we would be paralyzed with fear of whether what we were doing was the 'right' thing, or if it would give the 'right' result and so do nothing and die. Good gardners know to plant a variety and tend each according to it's needs. Or they discover by accident that it is a very handy strategy.

In the rush of our lives, we must take time to ponder the little miracles. Rejoice in surprise of faithful flowers. Pause and say "Look what God has done!" These are the tiny reassurances that God is working in our lives, and that our efforts are not in vain, whether in the garden or in the world.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Evolve

http://www.iht.com/articles/2007/09/25/news/edhavel.php

I mean really. I think everyone of us knows that the time is at hand for us to do something. I think an overwhelming majority of us are waiting to be told what that something is or might be. To insinuate that it's time to stop looking at the options and do something while still being forward looking enough to not further endanger the worlds climate is an insult to reason. Can you really make a decision on untested ways of climate control and think that it won't have long reaching effects? The energy and effort that is being put into developing low energy products and to reduce our overall consumption is astounding and should be applauded not criticized. It's those efforts that are going to provide us the precious time to test the long reaching affects of large scale climate controls. Being a member of the human race I fully hope we can undo what has been done. But arguing that it's important to keep people alive and thriving in a world that we have destroyed is kind of arrogant. Appropriate for a people that are capable of ruining the very thing that brings life to them. We should either be embracing all avenues for improvement or just toss them all out and enjoy the roller coaster ride that will be the expedited end of our race. Or will we evolve?

Friday, September 21, 2007

God files legal motions? Who knew?

I kind of like Ernie Chambers. I don't really know him, but most of the time I think that the stuff he does is pretty funny. I got a chuckle out of him suing God for making terroristic threats as a display of how easy it is in Nebraska to file what he calls a "frivolous" lawsuit. A couple of days later God counter sued. I love how people get upset with Ernie Chambers and then respond by proving his point for him.

Who knew that God has an attorney retained so he can sue his human creations at a moment's notice? I'll bet he has a consigliere like Tom in The Godfather or Alberto Gonzales in the Justice Department (note; I will never tire of making fun of Alberto Gonzales or Jon Bruning).

It sort of makes you wonder what kind of attorney Jesus would have been. While Jesus is the Lord, I doubt his closing arguments would have been very good. I can see the interviews with the jury members now, "We really couldn't understand his case all that much. He just kept telling these stories about bridegrooms and old widows and mustard seeds. We didn't find any reasonable doubt in there at all." He doesn't seem like a paperwork kind of guy either.

Back to the point--

Apparently there are two people that counter sued Ernie Chambers in the name of God. I almost wonder if some evangelical fundamentalist preacher will be crowing about filing a lawsuit against Ernie Chambers this coming Sunday with all of the members of his McChurch congregation hardy-har-har-ing it up about how the pastor is so clever. News flash, the person that filed this lawsuit is not clever. This person is dumb and is missing the point about the ability to file a frivolous lawsuit in Nebraska.

People that think at this level shouldn't be able to have a say in what's taught in a science class. People this thick and obtuse shouldn't be able to dictate foreign and domestic policy in the United States. They don't have the brainpower to understand that dealing with a foreign country requires a foreign policy slightly more thoughtful than "Yee Haw!" and a domestic policy that's focused on other things besides stopping the spread of "the gay" by not mentioning sex on an HHSS pamphlet.

Let's stop enabling.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

An Inspiration...

Edit: I needed to preface this with "an Inspiration" ... to finally contribute to this blog I'd been invited to. Without further ado, then.


A conversation with a friend who lives far away, but is in a relationship unlike any she's ever been in before. She is a person who was raised in a strict Christian home, but rebeled against it. Suffice it to say she has lived a VERY wild life. He is a person who was raised in a religiously ambivilant household, but who, after his own wild period, 'got saved' by the same denomination she was raised in, but no longer adheres to. Got it? These two folks are really at cross purposes (ha).

So, she calls me all the time for relationship advice, and my husband too. I guess because we are a couple who's spiritual paths are somewhat divergent. Or maybe because she doesn't have anyone else to call. Who knows? Yesterday we were having this conversation specific to some disagreements they've had about a whole variety of things, many of them small. They, in their relationship building, have been doing a lot of talking about the "what-ifs" in their future. It sort of hit me like a bolt from the blue, in the midst of offering some sort of comforting words about it... I stopped and changed direction. It occured to me that she and he were really worked up about a lot of tiny details, and a lot of very unlikely what-ifs. I wondered "Did our grandparents have these kinds of conversations?" I don't know if it's the sanitized screen through which we view our ancestors, but I think not. In this age we live in, so full of technology, consumerism, and fear, we (and I mean most everyone in my peer group) build relationships in very funny ways. We are writing Disaster Recovery Plans for our relationships... but we aren't working on key components. We want to know what happens if there's a tiny blip in our relationship data, and how to fix it, but we don't understand any of the hardware or the software. We don't even account for the human element anymore. We want a plan, something to guide us and fall back on if there's an error. We want to know what it will cost and how long it will take and what the steps are. We don't even worry about not having the skills or equipment to deal with it. We want the plan, we want the guarantee. But relationships aren't about guarantees. Life is not about guarantees. Humans are fallible (just like the technology we turn to every day, created by us in our feeble attempt at godlike control) and so while we hope and pray for the best every day, sometimes it doesn't happen. We're not wired like a network, or a rack full of servers. We're NOT logical. We stumble, we make mistakes, we second-guess, step back, start over. Life throws us curves when we don't expect them. Things change, jobs change, people die, babies are born, and time marches on. We write those Disaster Recovery Plans for 100 scenarios, and the 101st, one that we never considered, comes in and completely destroys our hard drive.

Our culture of fear and consumerism and technology has brought us to a terrible impass with the very nature of mortal existance. There is no money-back guarantee on life. It doesn't come with instructions for assembly, or an FAQ that's easily understood. And while I believe that God is as present in our lives as we allow God to be, and while I pray regularly in times of doubt, or trouble, and in times of joy and upliftedness, very, VERY rarely is it like calling tech support:

"Oh, just push that big OFF button on the left side."
"Thanks God, I feel like an idiot for not thinking of that!"
"No problem, that's My job."


We just have to figure out, often by trial and error, what does and doesn't work. We have to look to our parents, grandparents, peers and experts for examples of what *might* work. (or in some cases, what definitely doesn't) There is no Disaster Recovery Plan for life. There isn't one for relationships either. Just focus on loving each other, on communicating with each other, on looking forward, on moving forward. I don't know what else to tell her. Until you have a server to store it on, stop focusing on the data.

I'd like to hope that one day, we'll all have the courage to face life, and build relationships by talking about our dreams, and our desires and our hopes... ...and stop talking about all our fears and wants and the minutiae of what might happen IF this one thing goes wrong. I think we all, on some level, want beauty. I want for the human heart to see the future like an impressionist painting... full of swirling color and fuzzy detail... it should be bright and alive and not completely rigid or 100% clear. It should NOT look like an architechtural drawing. I think there is beauty and hope in not knowing everything. Stop listening to sources that tell you otherwise.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Surviving John Dominic Crossan

Right now, I'm 135 pages in to John Dominic Crossan's one million page book The Historical Jesus. It's quite the read, but it does require patience. Offhand I'd say Crossan has mentioned Jesus of Nazareth less than ten times in 135 pages. Much emphasis has been placed on the region, the socioeconomic classes of the time, and the political system in place thus far in the book. This takes a long time for two reasons:

1. This is a lot of information that required years of research and
2. John Dominic Crossan is a nerd. Nerds like to talk a lot.

This might end up being a series of posts, now that I think about getting into this.

The first thing that I'd like to talk about is the "Jesus was a country boy" image that a lot of us (including me) have. It's easy to imagine villages like Nazareth being a lot like small towns in the United States except without infrastructure and industry, although this isn't the case. In the first century of the Common Era, major cities were surrounded by smaller villages. The small villages supported the peasants and artisans (like carpenters) while the cities supported higher classes like priests, nobles, land owners, and rulers. In the case of Jesus, he grew up in Nazareth which was a small village outside of Sepphoris (see map). Sepphoris was between the Mediterranean Sea and the Sea of Galilee and on a major trade route through the region. Jesus was a native of a village just outside a major city, on a major trade route that stems from a major body of water (the Mediterranean) in a country that was occupied by the Roman Empire. He was no country bumpkin.
Because of his proximity to Sepphoris, he would have been familiar with the arts, economics, government (local and Roman), and customs of all classes in the region. This would have made him aware of the struggles of the peasants and the destitute in the area and better able to speak knowledgeably and the brutality of the Roman Empire.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Curing "The Gay"

A few months ago evangelist Ted Haggard announced that he was cured of The Gay. Daniel Gonzales, no relation to Constitution Opponent Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, tells his own story of attempts to "cure" his own homosexuality that caused him to lose his faith in the process. Word.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

I think I'm going to give up on beliefnet.com. It used to be a really interesting source of articles and forums about different religion but lately it's gotten away from that. There's a lot more current events on there now, and not necessarily anything that I can use. Perhaps a lot of other people can, and more power to them. They know what picante sauce tastes like.

Recently, actually a couple of days after the fact, they published an article by David Kuo who stated that it was reasonable to believe the Cho Sueng-Hui was possessed by a demon(s). Before someone gets all metaphorical and argues that we all have demons (which is a different conversation), he was saying Cho was actually possess by demons. The only basis he uses for this is that sometimes people get possessed by demons and Mother Theresa was possessed by a demon one time and he had the link from cnn.com to prove it with some dude saying they performed the exorcism. No evidence, no logical argument, nothing. Just hearsay from CNN.com and an extraordinary belief.

It's not up to the nonbeliever to reconcile himself to the same conclusion as the believer. It's up to the believer to prove his or her case. He or She should be willing and able to explain what is meant by the statement. That's the way conversations, debates, and such work. Have you ever heard the response "pray about it" or "read the Bible" to the question "what do you mean?" Is this a real answer?

Sunday, April 22, 2007

It is Time

As I sat here in front of the computer before our contemporary worship service, I saw article and headline ad nausea about the murders on the Virginia Polytechnic Institute campus. Per the UCC.org website, several delegations of church leaders have spoken out against a gun culture run rampant. Is that the problem?

I've heard several pro-gun advocates state that if one of the victims possibly had a gun, they might have ended this entire tragedy early and possibly saved lives. I suppose it's possible, and it's actually very ho-hum on the weekly advocate for torture-Fox's "24," along with a host of other shows. Yet for whatever strange reason I have a hard time siding with the folks in favor of a shootout in the engineering college. I find the notion that someone will transform into Jack Bauer and save the day about as likely as the possibility of someone using Jedi powers to disarm the gunman. The majority of the victims were 19, 20, and 21 year old college students; they came to class that day to study and take notes. Truly, these are not the droids you're looking for. Furthermore, I feel that this argument is the equivalent of stating that a family killed by a drunk driver would have been saved had they only practiced defensive driving. This logic doesn't just ignore the cause of the problem, it legitimizes the show (and also the propagation) of violence as the responsible answer to one of society's largest problems.

This in light of the fact that someone who was deemed by that same society, "a danger to himself" was allowed to purchase two bona fide Weapons of Mass Destruction. SHAME ON US. We are commanded (not nicely asked, not suggested) by our faith to "love one another as God has loved us." Marcus Borg says that the original translation of love in this sense meant compassion that is/was "womb-like." It stands to reason then that we are commanded by God to do our best to not let people like Cho Seung-Hui sink into the depths of a despair and hatred so dark that they lash out in horrifying ways. We are commanded by God to do our best to alleviate a poverty that creates a mentality that violence is the only solution for the means to survive. We are commanded by God to do our best to rid our culture of the mentality that legitimizes and propagates violence. I think it's time.

However the eternal question is, "What does success in this area look like?"

Friday, April 20, 2007

Since I'm the admin and the only one that posts

I thought I'd shamelessly promote myself. I'm playing a show on May 9th at Duffy's in downtown Lincoln with a couple of new friends. This is a totally secular show that I'm talking about here, although I will be doing a couple of songs that touch on a couple themes I've been thinking about lately that are spiritually related. One is an older song called, "I Hear A Sweet Voice Calling" and the other is one may be one of my own called, "I Hope God Isn't Like My Father." It will depend on whether or not I finish learning/writing them. Anyway, here's the flyer courtesy of my friend Jeff Iwanski:

Should be fun!

Gene

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

R.I.P Tom Arow

He was a true friend and gentleman.



"What Light," performed by Wilco

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Contemporary Worship

We'll be starting our worship band again and the next performance is April 22nd. In lieu of a drummer, I made one of these this afternoon:



















It's called a stump fiddle. It's made by nailing bottle caps to a sturdy piece of wood. I first saw it used by my friends in Honey Stump.

Sunday, March 4, 2007

First Day of My Life

By Bright Eyes of Omaha's Saddle Creek Records. Enjoy:

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Belief-O-Matic

I get the impression that we use the term "o-matic" a lot more than the term was ever used to refer to actual things. I'm not sure what the hyphen is all about either as it's basically "automatic" without the "aut*." Anyway, here's something from a site called beliefnet:

The Belief-O-Matic test.

It's supposed to determine your denomination based on the answers to your questions. Take it for what it is, a short survey on a website that I threw on here to give you something to do. Just because this test says you're a Quaker, or a Buddhist, or a Cosmetologist, doesn't mean you really are. Have fun!

*"Aut" is latin for either/or

Monday, February 26, 2007

First post

Greetings and welcome to our new blog! Hopefully, the inauguration of this site will be in conjunction with updates to our website www.northeastucc.com. This blog will most likely serve as an outlet and place of discussion for the members of Northeast United Church of Christ in Lincoln, NE, but feel free to browse and comment if you just happened upon it. Please excuse the bare bones look of this site, hopefully we'll be adding some creativity in the near future.

Your humble Admin,

Gene