Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Would You Rather

I've had a recurring thought lately. I suppose it borrows somewhat from Craig Fisher's blog from several months ago where he was playing a little game I think he called "Would You Rather." Anyway, I was riding along with my 11 year-old the other day and we were chatting. To be honest I can't remember exactly what he said, but I remember thinking that I would have never shared whatever it was with my dad.

Frankly, it made me a little choked up and it got me to thinking. Would I rather have a kid who by all appearances is a model of good behavior or would I rather have one who is willing to talk to me about his life even if it means hearing some difficult stuff? Without question I would take the latter. The fact is, we are people and no matter how polished and perfect we appear we will stumble. If we think we cannot talk to anyone about that kind of stuff it is much more challenging to recover from a stumble. I want my son and daughters to feel they can tell us the kind of things that may make us cringe. In turn, I want to be able to accept and love them no matter what- just like our Father reacts to the crud in our lives.

So the question: Would you rather see model children or have a real relationship with them? I'm not sure it can be reduced to such simplicity, but if it can I'll obviously take the real relationship. And if I get too perturbed when they resist, it may serve well to remember that God is waiting for the same thing from me.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Self-Glory Road

Forty-one years ago today the first-ever college basketball team with an all-black starting five won the NCAA championship. It's interesting to sit here cast in the light of modern sentiment and scold those who were so obviously racist at the time. Then again, it could be considered the height of pride to assume any of us would not have been drawn into that way of thinking. After all, how many people sat idly by in Europe in the years leading up to the Holocaust? How many now are sitting by as genocide rolls on in Africa or elsewhere? How many sit in their air conditioned cars on the way to their well-decorated homes as they pass people living in squalor? It's easy to use a historical lens to see things clearly, I suppose, but what are you looking at right now?

Sunday, March 11, 2007


This is a picture of something I wish I had never seen. I made a new friend this weekend. He is an awesome kid- eleven years old, respectful and good-hearted. I don't think it would be wise for me to give his name so I'll just call him D. This picture was taken in his neighborhood. Though it is hard to tell from this picture I took with my phone, the white banner is advertising a certain type of rally which will soon be held on that spot. Again, I don't want to say what type of rally because you never know what kind of hits you might get from searches for key phrases. Let's just say it will be a meeting of a certain organization of which Senator Robert Byrd was once a high-ranking member. Again, though it is hard to tell from the picture, the three large items laying on the ground behind and to the right of the sign are huge crosses made from telephone poles. In a few weeks they will be erected and burned on this property alongside existing signs quoting bastardized applications of scripture which they think support the hatred they spew. What makes me so angry (other than the obvious) is that my new friend, D, lives close enough to this spot that I am afraid he may literally be able to feel the heat from these burning crosses in his own yard. This is a big deal in any case but a bigger deal when you are the son of a black man. D seems to blow off issues of race. He told us yesterday of something that happened last week at school where a kid told him he "hated (his) black daddy." When asked how that made him feel, he just shrugged and said, "Aww, I just ignore 'em. I get a lot of practice ignoring my little brother and sister." Anyway, I just say all this to ask that anyone who stumbles across this please lift up D in prayer. I know everyone has to deal with some sort of hate at one time or another- people hate others because of their ethnicity, their nationality, their religion- but I still wish D weren't having to deal with it. So pray for him. Pray for those who are hateful. And pray that God will somehow be glorified in this situation no matter how badly distorted His image will be as people somehow try to use His word as a basis for that of which He is the opposite.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Tagged- Sort of

I have a friend who is a bit of a lurker who kind of tagged me. Actually, he made a few requests. He wanted to pick a day (3/6/07) and have me answer a series of questions pertaining to that day. Here they are. I have now been e-stranged.

Strangest thing you did today:

Today was a ranch day so I spent a good part of the day giving rides to animals. I hauled a few llamas and 26 rattlesnakes. That's sort of strange.

Strangest conversation you had today:

I had a conversation with a friend this morning wherein I encouraged him to remove me from his will. That was a little weird.

Strangest thing you heard about today:

Well, there was plenty of wierd stuff in the news, but anyone could hear about that. Something more close to home was a discussion Kendra told me about. The minor league teams in our little league use names of minor league teams around the country. One particular team is the Lugnuts, after the Lansing Lugnuts in Michigan. Anyway, one young man on our street was a little confused about the name of that team. He was convinced that the team to watch this year is the Love Nuggets. I am scared of what their mascot might be. Like they say in Tennessee, For the love!

Strangest thing you saw today:

This may be a bit of a stretch, but a guy in a convenience store asked me how to get to HWY 83/84. I pointed to a sign showing that very store was on HWY 83/84.

Strangest phone call today:

Nothing major, really. I did have one lady call me thinking I was my dad. Then again, when I think about how strange he is, I think it counts.

Strangest thing a family member did today:

Hmmm. I'm not sure. Perhaps I'll give the kids a little more time.