It appears that I am a bit of a subject of discussion amongst a few “bird watchers” that have taken issue with some of the stuff both on my blog and in some of the comments I have made on another blog. Aside from being cowardly to sit back and talk about people from the shadows, it just seems to be in bad taste, but bad taste is pretty much the order of the day for the majority of the internet, so no biggie there.
So after thinking some things over and talking to a few people I find that I have little hope for the churches of the West. Protestant churches can’t get their act together with scripture and nobody seems to care about it or agree on what can be done to fix it.
I talked with a co-worker and my sister this morning (my sister is the secretary of the office) and I posed a question to my sister about head coverings. The point wasn’t so much about the head coverings itself, but more about why are Christians so averse to scripture that can easily be understood as literal scripture. The verses in question are 1 Corinthians 11:1-16. My question posed to her was this: “If this is a literal piece of scripture, that is, if Paul is saying that, in the churches of God women should cover their heads while they pray and men should not cover their heads because this is dishonorable, why is the idea of head coverings so offensive?”. Now, again, the question really wasn’t about head coverings, but about the fact that the scripture itself, the words in the bible, seem to indicate that head coverings MEAN SOMETHING in the church of God, and that Paul says the covering or uncovering (female or male) should be observed, why, when I point this out, are people (men and women) offended by it?
So over at another blog page (one much bigger than mine) there seems to be a battle between a few Catholic types, Orthodox types (though I guess these two are somewhat similar) and Protestant types over the “true church”, scripture and all that stuff. Important stuff, to be sure, but maybe a bit more over my head at the moment. I must admit I have done little study into Catholicism or Orthodoxy, myself being considered a non-denomination protestant (I guess, I just want to follow Jesus, really).
Part of the argument is that the Orthodoxy has had, for centuries, a clear cut vision of what scripture is and means, with rigid control by those in charge, while Protestants are kind of all over the place, with every man interpreting scripture in his own way, which has lead to confusion.
So I just had a small discussion with my sister over the events of the weekend and I explained to her that I had a little bit of a sour feeling about the web site for The Influencers, a church group that, from what I can tell, offers a number of different types of courses for churches including a men’s study. For me the big issues were the odd description of men doing “treasure hunts” (I mistakenly said “journeys”) which guide them towards an “inner chamber”. Maybe I was reading into it too much, but take a look for yourself:
Since I railed on some CCM artists the other day I thought I would post some good Christian music from back in the day. Petra is one of my favorite Christian bands and I have a lot of memories of laying around my parents house when I was younger, listening to these records on my dads stereo. Its kind of surreal because it would be the whole family, gathered in the living room, listening to this music. Sure us kids were typically coloring or something like that, but there was little talking, just listening to the songs.
When I got a little older I picked up Stryper, who was a pretty good band that enjoyed some moderate success with their music on the secular charts. Their music has always been pretty firmly rooted in the gospel as far as I can remember. I know they did an album of secular songs they “reimagined”, but I didn’t see anything wrong with that. Their latest venture is pretty rockin’, and the first track “Yahweh” is awesome.
So over the weekend a couple of interesting things took place that really just destroyed any real hope I have for Christianity to recover in the West and produce some kind of revival. I won’t say completely destroyed, but certainly put a damper on what I thought was a strong possibility.
First off, while having a breakfast meeting with my dad he mentioned that he was interested in attending the meeting of a church group called The Influencers at one of the local churches in town. Now the church he is talking about is already suspect in my book because I know some people who go there who are in positions of leadership and really just should not be. Believe me when I say that these people are not at all living lives that would be good examples of Christ like living in that some of them are in outright sin. Upon looking up information on this group I became a little suspect over a few different items, the first and foremost their description of men participating in daily “journeys” that eventually would lead them to an “inner chamber” that would then lead to a “more intimate relationship with Christ”. I’ve pointed out before that some of the ladies studies and recommendations from women “pastors” have dove into weird occult like recommendations for prayer such as forming circles on the ground with objects or drawing, which is straight out of the occult and not found in scripture anywhere, I hold this to be in like manner. I can’t even see how it would be being used as a colorful metaphor for prayer and Christ-like living. The bible mentions nothing about “journeys” and “inner chambers” while walking as a Christian. In fact, the chambers analogy sounds very much like the chakra mentality of Eastern religions, which seems to have taken a foothold in modern Christianity as well with “contemplative prayer”
Over the weekend I celebrated my 22nd anniversary with my wife at Disneyland. It was enjoyable, if not surprisingly hot trip, with temps in Anaheim reaching over 90 degrees. Maybe its a sign of age, but this is the first time in any of our many trips to the park that we had to duck into somewhere and sit for a while to cool of and collect ourselves! That being said, its amazing what a 15 minute break in the air conditioning will do for you. To top it all off there was a Halloween event going on that I didn’t know about, but would explain why it was so difficult to find a hotel room. The one we got was an awful place in what can only be described as the literally butt-crack of Disneyland, and I will never, ever return! I’d rather walk six miles to the park and back than stay in that creepy place again!
That story, however, is not the point of this post (thanks for reading though)! Upon our return Sunday morning we crashed and slept in early only to wake up and find ourselves in needing to prepare for the birthday party of one of my nephews. The little guy is five years old now, and despite my dedication to hanging out with family I would have stayed home and slept, but my wife promised to bring some food, so we had to go. It was a good time and afterward all the family members headed out around the corner to grab some food from a great little pizza place.
This is where things started to get interesting. To me, at least.