Why Obstacles Matter

Chris Horst, one of the authors of Mission Drift, has some good thought in his Monthly Musings this month, about how challenges, and struggling/working to overcome them, are important to our growth and development. Isn’t this also


OMG: Millennials abandoning the Bible – No, really?

So I read a an article recently about the results from some data collected by the American Bible Society over the last four years.

OMG: Millennials abandoning the Bible

Among the results are a definite decline in the esteem of the Bible by millennials:

“– Although 79 percent of adults believe the Bible is sacred literature, only 64 percent of millennials do.
– 19 percent of millennials believe no literature is sacred, compared to just 13 percent of all adults.
– Exactly half of adults overall believe the Bible “contains everything a person needs to know to live a meaningful life,” but that number is just 35 percent for millennials.
– Half of adults believe the Bible has too little influence in society, but only 30 percent of millennials agree.
– 39 percent of millennials never read the Bible outside of church, compared to 26 percent of all adults.

The survey also found that since 2011, antagonism toward the Bible has risen from 11 percent to 19 percent and those who consider themselves “Bible-friendly” dropped from 45 percent to 37 percent.”

Now that’s concerning, but I think not totally unexpected, or terrible.



Assuming this is true (and I have no reason to believe it is not)…it’s a real shame! There really was plenty of room to fill in the Biblical account with some drama. Some futurist stuff, and vegetarianism makes sense (although why Able would raise sheep and not eat them, I don’t know, but I can work with it). I could even go with a relatively minor role for God in the film, such as an initial communication with Noah, and establishing the rainbow sign at the end. But what this movie comes out with is kinda bat**** crazy, if you’ll excuse my Klatchian, to the point of removing the central themes found in the Biblical account completely. I’d still err on the side of giving the film a watch, to be able to discuss it, but I have to say I’m definitely waiting for it to come to me on DVD or something. Honestly, given the reported abject terribleness of this adaptation, I may be watching it more for Emma Watson’s acting than for anything else.


Gravely disappointed.


Sidenote – I had linked through to Phil Cooke’s article about Why I’m Recommending Christians See the Movie Noah – now I’m questioning his motives, or whether he had really seen the film. I mean I still understand his point about seeing it and using it as a point to discuss…but according to the reviews I’ve seen since the film’s release, I’m at pains to understand how Cooke could underemphasise the non-Biblical elements in the film.


Do you remember when you were a kid and you had to read a book for school and then create a presentation in front of the class. There was always that one kid who refused to read the book but he’d still have an elaborate project in an attempt to impress for a grade and the rest of the class would have to sit through it? You know the feeling of looking forward to something for a while, knowing it has extreme potential, but it just falls flat, and a sinking sensation fills your guts? Everyone has at some point or another said “it’s just not as good as the book,” in reference to a movie adaption, am I right? Well all these scenarios apply to Darren Aronofsky’s Noah. If this film were graded on accuracy to the source text, it’d get a hard F.

The thing is, there is…

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Ghosts of O.S.s past

For some reason I think the products were better back then too. Maybe it’s just me?
…well maybe not the products per-se. I seem to remember a much less buggier time, when the features tended to be mostly useful rather than more towards non-functional and annoying. Or maybe I’m just old and it’s nostalgia that makes me mourn the passing of the days when we could exit Windows and play in DOS unhindered. It definitely seems like today’s graphics and processor heavy games (and editing programs, maybe? For those who can work without the internet and distractions) could really use a DOS running environs to free up 100% of the RAM and processor capacity to run them without interrupts from background processes.

I tend to think that back when harddrive and RAM space were at a serious premium, coding was much more innovative. When you’ve only 1.38MB to fit a program into without running onto another disc, or a few MB of RAM to play with…well you sure had to make your code efficient, short and speedy. Of course this link kinda belies that, with hidden jokes in the code:


I’m supposed to be having a relaxing day today. My mother-in-law wanted to look after my son, and yesterday afternoon was, trying.
I do have some housework to do, but nothing crazy. But what I’ve found through these ‘rest days’ is that I don’t rest. I mean, I do, but I tend to want to get so much done, or rather, there are so many things I want to do, that I end up running around jumping from one thing to the next, without actually relaxing.

Sometimes I think we’ve, as a society, forgotten how to relax. I mean I think about not doing anything this afternoon but watching a move or reading, and at the end of it I’ll feel like I’ve got nothing done.

Or maybe that’s a flaw in perception – I don’t necessarily consider down time or relaxation as something to be done, to be accomplished in and of itself.

In a little bit I’m going to grab lunch (because I haven’t eaten breakfast) and then put up the laundry while watching Star Trek: Insurrection. See? I frame it as something I’m doing while getting something else done. I will be putting out a post about Star Trek probably tonight or tomorrow, so look out for it 🙂

For right now though, I’m going to stick on some more laundry and finish the washing up before my wife calls on her morning break.


Noah. Or, why I really don’t enjoy ‘Christian’ movies.


I haven’t seen this film yet, and I don’t know if I will (I doubt I’ll see it in cinemas). However, I more or less agree with Cooke. I’d far prefer to watch this (or Inglorious Basterds, for that matter) than watch Fireproof or Left Behind again. “Christian” movies, to my taste, tend to have horrible dialogue, subpar acting, and stories, or ways of telling stories, that simply don’t entertain me. Which for me is the purpose of a movie.

Speaking as someone who writes and who studied and loves theatre and film – I’d be embarrassed to be a part of a lot of the films produced by the Christian community, if I can term it thus. They’re simply not up to the professional production standard, in writing, directing, photography, acting, lighting, that I desire when I see a movie. And they manage this despite larger budgets than quite a few more amateur films I’ve enjoyed. I think that’s because they want to be polished and ‘Hollywood’ without the necessary budget, but that’s another story.

I don’t want to knock the people who make these films – believe me, you’re a needed voice. I just can’t help but not be entertained by your films, as a rule. And if I don’t enjoy them, someone with no affection for Jesus in the first place probably isn’t going to enjoy them. Fireproof had a great message. Agreed, hands down. I’m glad I watched it with my wife, as painful as the dialogue was to endure. But as a sermon or documentary/devotional/informational film, it could have been better tailored to those ends. The earlier Veggitales episodes (I haven’t seen the later ones, but I understand they’re less on-point) did a great job of this.

I think this is part of the issue…

Is that so horrible?

Why I don’t mind my son watching me type and being forced to play by himself sometimes. I want him to see me reading and working at writing amd learning and thinking through things. Maybe when he’s older he can actually be a part of that process.

I didn’t even know there was a movement not to let kids see you on the phone/computer, but there you are, and it makes sense. I’m learning some balance. Having a tablet makes it very easy to be ‘connected’ whenever conscious. I could do that more with my phone, but it’s just slightly too…not advanced, a bit awkward to use for that constantly, for my taste: I can’t be bothered.


Go visit Sarah Bessey’s blog, there’s some good stuff there 🙂

In which I don’t mind if my tinies see me on the computer – Sarah Bessey

Francis Chan: Why Small Group Discipleship is Important

I’ve been thinking a lot about “the church” lately, and how we relate to eachother, those who don’t believe, and how we live our lives. I think ‘real’ informal relationships are vital, as well as more formal ‘small group’ structures. In reading about “The church as a family,” I was linked to this audio which I’m now listening to and it’s pretty interesting too.


Francis’ video here, however, is rather inciteful –

Claiborne and Greer talk “The Good Samaritan”

So I came upon this CNN blog post through a link from Is God a Communist or a Capitalist?

Apparently Shane Claiborne (author of The Irresistible Revolution, which I wrote about the other day, and co-founder of The Simple Way) and Peter Greer (president of HOPE International and author of Mission Drift) had a discussion at an AEI event about “the  Biblical parable of the Good Samaritan and the problem of providing immediate relief for compounding and overwhelming needs but still being able to make the transition to sustainable development.”

I love what Peter Greer says (and his sense of humour here) at the start of the highlight video:

What would it look like if the parable of the Good Samaritan were were happening today in Washington DC?

John Piper talking about A.D.D. (Attention Deficit Disorder).

In a recent podcast, John Piper answered the question “Is A.D.D. a sin?”

I particularly like Piper’s working definition of A.D.D. as “a brain configuration that presents unusual challenges because of a combination of deficient focus and hyper-focus” – when I heard that my response was “Yes! That’s me, that’s exactly what it is!”