Wednesday, September 25, 2002

NYPD Blue had its premier yesterday, which I mentioned yesterday, come to think of it. Before the premier, ABC showed a 10-year retrospective of the show. 10-bleeping years?!? Wow. It was hosted by Joe Mantegna, who pretty much seemed to be reading off of cue cards--no reason why he shouldn't for a puff-piece of a show like this. My one question for Joe is, how come you can put more life into dead lines like these than you can the punchy, fun lines of Spenser in those dreadful A&E movies?

Tuesday, September 24, 2002

Well, the new TV season is upon us. Which means it's time for Christians and others to start wailing and moaning about how horrible TV has become--especially during "the family hour."

And they're right--I mean, ugh! Everybody Loves Raymond is back and is there a less imaginative show around? Not to mention un-funny.

But there are some bright spots--I caught the first episode of Firefly last week--there's some real promise. In this look at the future, we have a cast member referred to as "the Shepherd." He's some sort of religious authority--a very itinerant preacher or somewhat. Last week he was played as a wise man, almost distant and above it all--yet he was quite concerned with the day-to-day things itself. Granted, he'll undoubtedly be the platform for all sorts of theological liberalism--but it's still nice to see religion in a nice (and necessary?) light.

And, of course, tonight's the season premier of NYPD Blue. We'll get to see how well they can follow up on one of the best seasons they've had in a looooong time. I can't wait!

Well, well. This has been one of those weeks in which I'm very aware of time. How fast it moves (deadlines, kids growing up), how it can just lurch to a stop (getting an unexpected piece of bad news), how it can draaaaaag (during a long lecture, on a warm afternoon following lunch when you've only had 1.5 hrs of sleep in the past 30 hours).

Wednesday, September 18, 2002

Number One really impressed me this week. He's frequently, um, overly sensitive to pain. Frequently, in my less charitable moments, I'd use the word "sissy." But a couple of days ago he got his finger tore up in a swing (not sure how, and, of course, no one sees the need to inform me). It was not pretty.

But when we got home, mommy had to put it in some hydrogen peroxide. The little guy took it like a champ--winced a little, and was a little nervous about it, but no big hysterics. I'd have passed out if it were me, but I'm not as strong as he is.

Well, I don't think I could possibly be busier. Which is really quite nice--am finding energy stores I didn't expect to find. But the wee ones around here have been sucking even my reserves dry. The boys have been at each other's throats all week. Part of me thinks I should just let them go at it--both learn a little something. But wrong is wrong . . .

Sunday, September 15, 2002

Peter Jeffery, in Opening Up Ephesians has this wonderful little point while discussing the doctrine of election (1:4):

It is significant to note that the apostle does not argue for this doctrine, but makes it a matter of praise. Thus it should be for every true child of God.


wow--it's been that long since I posted? Sorry.

Wednesday, September 11, 2002

There's probably a law somewhere declaring that everyone has to try to be somewhat introspective today. It's probably not necessary--even those I know who've pronounced that they'll be avoiding all the coverage will be exposed to some of it. And I don't know what kind of cold-hearted **** you've got to be to not dwell on the events of last year.

Like most, I remember seeing the inital reports of the crash on TV (I was killing a couple of minutes before taking my second son to the doctor), hearing the confusion, the doubt, the fear as another report came in about the Pentagon (l was listening to the radio on the way to the doctor's), and then watching the first tower fall (holding an almost two-year old on my lap in the waiting room, being so thankful he didn't have a clue about what was going on, wanting someone to tell Matt Lauer to say something helpful or to shut up).

And where are we now? Patisan bickering about the war(s), the government taking away more and more of what makes us American, morality, religion, entertainment back to where it was a year ago.

God struck this nation, and we shrugged it off. What's next? What will it take to get this stiff-necked people to repent?

Ugh. Someone brought flavored coffee into work today. Which, of course, translates into no java for me. It's not that I'm just a coffee-snob--if someone brought in Folgers, I'd drink it. But there's something about the flavors, literally turns my stomach.

Needless to say, it's not a good day. I'm at least 4 cups o' joe short. I'll be lucky to have enough energy to hit the "post" button

Tuesday, September 10, 2002

Last week a friend of mine (always on top of the news) finally heard about these child-tracker microchips. You know the ones that you can get implanted just under the skin and are tied to a GPS.

Anyhow--he's a strong premill dispie, and he knows I'm not (tho' I don't think he really understands what a preterist is). So he's gloating about this. Ah ha! Don't you see it? The Mark of the Beast is on the way. He doesn't say that, but it's the vibe I'm getting off of him and his trying-not-to-be-smug smile.

Clearly I'm being sanctified, so I didn't attack him on this. (it was perhaps a more self-ish reason, actually). How does he know (accepting his hermeneutic on this) that these aren't the marks of the saved, and that the mark of the beast won't be something else? Or are the marks of the saved an "invisible" mark--seen only by others who are saved, while the non-saved will be known by their physical marks? Why is one of those a "literal" fulfillment, while the other isn't?

My wife and I knew the instant that we heard about these chips that it was only a matter of time 'til they became nominated as The Mark. Wouldn't mind being wrong sometimes . . .

Yay! We were drilling on the presidents today, he looks for the Reagan card for a second--and you can almost literally see the lightbulb over his head turn on--"REAGAN!!!!!" He shouts.

And then we add the next 5 to work on this week. I notice that next week we'll be starting with FDR and it hits me that it might be a good idea to learn first names of the presidents, too. "Ronald" is the first first name he's able to associate with the correct last name.

In other words, today's a good day.

Monday, September 09, 2002

Yesterday, I read this in Worship by Hughes Oliphant Old. It totally blew me away. I'm going to try to smuggle it--or at least part of it--into my church's newsletter. He's describing Paul's discussion of the Lord's Supper in 1 Cor.

. . . Paul again returns to the subject of the celebration of the Lord's Supper. He introduces his remarks by saying, "When you assemble as a church, I hear that there are divisions among you" (1 Cor. 11:18). The Greek here is very interesting. It might be translated, "when you come together to make the church." The text seems to imply that it is in the meeting together for the purpose of sharing the meal that these individuals become the church, the body of Christ. It is this supper which constitutes the church. Once again it is clear that the Lord’s Supper is a covenant meal. Those who participate in it become members of the covenant community.

Here let us think for a moment about the fact that the service is called "the Lord's supper" (1 Cor. 11:20). Very few things in the New Testament are called the Lord's. We hear of the Lord's Supper, the Lord's Table, the Lord's Cup, and the Lord's Day. That is about it. These things all belong together. The Lord's Day is distinguished by the fact that it is the day for the celebration of the Lord's Supper at the Lord’s Table, sharing all together the Lord's Cup. Why are all these things called the Lord's? It is because it is here above al that we celebrate the memorial of our Lord, the memorial which he instructed his disciples to observe. It was the Lord's Table, the Lord's Cup, and the Lord's Supper because he was the host. It was by means of these that through his Holy Spirit he was present among them. It was the Lord's Day because this was the day on which he chose to meet them again and again.

A paragraph or so later he states:

"Do this in remembrance of me" (1 Cor. 11:24). Quite important to a true understanding of the sacrament of communion is an understanding of what is meant by celebrating "in remembrance of me." "Do this in remembrance of me" is in effect Jesus' interpretation of the fourth commandment, "Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy" (Exod. 20:8). We have already spoken about this at some length. Something else needs to be said here. Neither Jesus nor Paul had in mind a simple mental recollection. They had in mind far more. The text says "Do this in remembrance of me." They had in mind holding a religious service. In a true celebration of a covenant meal the remembering of God's saving acts had an essential function. It was through God's gracious acts of redemption that he lad claim to his people; by remembering those saving acts one confessed and acknowledged that claim. In holding the memorial one acknowledges God's Lordship and the service which one therefore owes to God . . .. In so doing one lays hold of the Covenant and assumes both the obligations and the prerogatives of the covenant people. (p. 110-111)

I know, I know . . .less than a week and I miss a few days. You knew--I knew--it was going to happen eventually, might as well start off that way, eh?

I could say that I was despondant over my son's failure to remember Reagan's name . . . but that'd be really pathetic, as well as untrue.

So what happened? Just forgot about it, really. Sorry. But then again, it's not like a I have a plethora, or even a handful, or even one loyal reader, right? Prove me wrong by e-mailing me.

Thursday, September 05, 2002

My son can't remember Reagan, and I can't stand it.

This, in and of itself, is not a surprise. He's four, so he was born, what?, nine years after The Gipper left office (72 dog years). We're learning the Presidents now--present to the past. He's a huge George W. fan. Something--who knows what--during the inaugural festivities caught his attention and ever since then, the kid's been ga-ga over Bush 43. So that one is a piece of cake. Then there's Clinton, "Bush's Daddy," and then a long pause. "I think it's, I think it's" and that's all I get. I feed him Reagan's name, and then it's "Carter, Ford, Nixon" no trouble. The kid can't come up with his name.

I even tried bribing him today, to see if it was just an act or a game. He didn't budge. He tried, but nothing.

It really bugs me. If it was Clinton that he couldn't remember, I'd give him a cookie every time he flubbed it. Carter, Ford, Nixon, etc. I'd work with him. But Ronald Reagan! Maybe this is Gen Xer self-involvement, maybe it's the mythic stature the man holds over conservatives and their allies, maybe it's just me.

My son can't remember Reagan, and I can't stand it.

Wednesday, September 04, 2002

Gave out my first grades today--(we're homeschooling, think I forgot to mention that)--that was hard. I mean, what grade do you give for tracing? If it's right on the dotted line it gets 100%; if it strays, but kind of keeps the shape it gets a B.

Ah well, it'll get easier next week or so when we get past this intro stuff.

Work on the look continues . . . I'm getting closer to losing this silly color-change thing . . .

Tuesday, September 03, 2002

While I work on the look of this blog, I'd like to take a minute to describe how proud I am of my oldest.

'Course as soon as I say that, I realize I can't. Last night, the night before he started kindergarten, I looked at him and got one of those warm fuzzies that old Long Distance commericals were trying to conjure up. The lil' dude is smart, I'll give you that--always thought so. But to see him handling fairly well everything we threw at him today--that's something different. I can't put it into words--but it was fairly special.

Why blog? It's an effort to discipline myself to write something every day. I figure if I can do that, I will begin having more discipline in different areas, I'll become a better writer, get published, make enough money to quit my lousy job, become a world-famous theologian, and attain entire sanctification!

Perhaps I'm asking a bit too much, eh?

The name for this blog came from one of my favorite novels, Don DeLillo's White Noise. In discussing that novel, DeLillo said:
"In White Noise in particular, I tried to find a kind of radiance in dailiness. Sometimes this radiance can be almost frightening. Other times it can be almost holy or sacred.... Our sense of fear--we avoid it because we feel it so deeply, so there is an intense conflict at work.... I think it is something we all feel, something we almost never talk about, something that is almost there. I tried to relate it in White Noise to this other sense of transcendence that lies just beyond our touch. This extraordinary wonder of things is somehow related to the extraordinary dread, to the death fear we try to keep beneath the surface of our perceptions."

I'm going to try to reflect that same kind of thinking.

This is the first post to this blog. Welcome to my White Noise! Hopefully we'll come up with a new look for this thing real soon.