Weekly Meanderings

(Perhaps a little dimmer this week.)

ChicagoLts.jpgSpeaking of Chicago in grief over Blagojevich, did you see the powerful plea from Chuck Colson?

I go on record here to thank Beliefnet for its policy of advertising. The secret for them is to get the kinds of ads our kind of blog community wants, and yesterday’s experience was frustrating but Beliefnet is working with us us to block the Mormon ads; they took them down yesterday but apparently they are still working on this one … I’ve seen one this morning already.

Pastors, coffee and J.J. Buckfart’s reflections. Tony’s posts on same-sex marriage drew plenty of response, but it is this sort of response that is most needed — a candid, even-handed, rational response by Rob Bowman that deserves to be read alongside Edith Humphrey’s excellent piece in CTHenry Zonio, besides have a snazzy picture, posts some questions and thoughts about where to go with 20-somethings not attending church. I don’t know if you know about Englewood Review of Books, an online book review service, but they now have a Christmas offer going that might interest you. The Pirate Brotherhood and the church. Ed Gilbreath discusses Barbie vs. Bratz. Did you read John Frye’s post on the theology of passing kidney stones, and John knows. Good to see some humor after that event. The gospel, legalism and the iMonk and his responders. Here’s what we have to say about Chicago’s corruptalooza politics.

Paraclete Christmas special.

advent.jpgMissional vs. Attractional: David Fitch weighs in again. So does Bill Kinnon. As always, Tim Keller speaks some sense in a comment on Fitch’s blog that Kinnon also quotes … and I especially like Keller’s claim that it this isn’t method but getting the gospel right and (what he calls) contextualizing the church. And one could read Tom Smith’s post on “why church?”

My son’s new blog, which some of you with finer tastes either will enjoy or will not enjoy.

Why this way? A nice advent reflection.

Malware and worms and the like … in your computer … read this warning.

And this warning, from the Archbishop of York, about Robert Mugabe, a similar call by SA Archbishop Desmond Tutu … and the established countries of Africa must stand together for the survival and healing of Zimbabwe.

Are you in a book group? Does this piece by Joanne Kaufman tell your story?

This is the only newspaper we’ve known for Chicagoland.

For those who love birds

For those who love books … Mr. Wilson’s Bookshelf.

NAE leader, Cizik, resigns.

Who else would talk about kissing a velvet Elvis Presley painting
before each day’s show for luck? Who else could have gotten a listener
to put a cell phone to use by putting it in a dryer and setting it on
tumble – while the call was still connected? Who else would honor
Collins every year after his death with an on-air toast on his
birthday, Feb. 28? Spike. We’ll miss ya.

Online segregation … this is worth thinking about seriously. Anyone done anything on this?

1. One of the more interesting characters in the Land of Israel today.
2. I totally agree.
3. Christmas poets.
4. McCafe’s latte? Who’s had one? What do you think?
5. On bailing out Detroit … good, responsible suggestions. Larry Kudlow weighs in too.

Thumbnail image for latte.jpg
6. David Waters has a good piece “Under God.”
7. Paying it forward, at Christmas, at Starbs.
8. The strongest voice against Islamic terrorism must come from Muslims — so this piece is good news.
9. A plea by a writer for writers.
10. Engineers working for the animal kingdom.


Congrats to Michelle Wie; suddenly the LPGA just got much more interesting.

DaBears, DaGould!

Gould.jpgHas to be one of my (or Tim Gombis’) students…


They call this Zombie Nation:


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  • Scot…I missed the hubbub about advertising yesterday, but wonder if it is related to the add up right now from the Mormons? Hmmm….

  • Tim Gombis

    Had the Bears’ overtime win come BEFORE my students had their final exam, they may have gotten off easy!!

  • RJS

    Cizic was the NAE vice president for governmental affairs wasn’t he? Not the president. Leith Anderson is president. Or is there something here I don’t know?

  • RJS

    John’s post on theology is great – I always enjoy reading his stuff (and the comments afterward).
    Colson’s piece is thought-provoking.
    This paragraph hit me:
    Tragically, America is continuing to rear its young to become not only self-obsessed, but obsessed with personal power. Quaint-sounding virtues such as courage, honesty and prudence — historically considered the elements of character — are no match for a society in which the exaltation and gratification of self becomes the overriding goal of life.
    This is so true – and it is often rationalized (rather ironically) as “for the greater good” – that is: encouraging greed and pride and self-centered focus in the individual leads to greater achievement and thus greater good. And this contagion winds its way into the church as well – in many ways – but one way is in the growth of “personality cult” churches.
    Much to think about…

  • Duane

    I prefer Paul Young’s “St. Arbucks” to Starbs.

  • Your Name

    Indeed, it is true, RJS.
    Colson’s piece brought me up short, and made me think about the devastating intrusions of pride into my own life, and made me realize that if I’m in thrall to sinful pride, I can justify anything. (I wrote on my own blog about that recently).
    The consequences of that justification, however, are tragic, something Blagojevich is finding out first-hand, something that I’ve found out too often. Thanks for your insights.

  • kent

    We have listened to Spike for over 20 years. My wife is going to miss him terribly. While I enjoy john, his replacement, my bride is not so sure. But WGN was and is a friend in the morning drive.

  • Dean

    That’s not Zombie Nation. That’s Penn State pride! 🙂

  • Dianne P

    I found this paragraph from the CT article on homosexuality interesting in light of the other discussion here on the essentials of faith.
    “Some would say that this reversal in Christian sexual ethics does not touch the core of the faith and is therefore no grounds for church splits. They are mistaken. This accommodation to a society’s declining mores, instead, divides those who embrace it from the church historic.”
    My question is – Is this an issue that is essential? And if so, could her argument be used for many other “essentials”?

  • Thanks for the mention, Scot.

  • Cardinal Dulles passed away yesterday afternoon at age 90. May God grant him forgiveness of all his sins, voluntary and involuntary, and bless and save his soul.
    See the link for details.

  • ChrisB

    The Sojourner article on online segregation is just more of the same empty argument we get about the “most segregated hour.”
    People hang out with people like them. You can make a case that it’s counter productive, but it’s not necessarily sin.
    Telling people to include links to “under-resourced” sites is fine, but making it out to be a “justice” issue is silly.

  • Scot, THANK YOU for posting the Chuck Colson piece. WOW.

  • Michael

    In response to your question — the McDonalds latte’s are horrible.

  • qb

    Go, Lukas, go! The Belgian trappist ales are to die for, so the Duvel review was a delight to read.
    (Maybe I should have posted that at his blog, not this one.)

  • Rebeccat

    I had a McDonald’s latte last summer. Blegh! Didn’t even finish the thing. It tasted like cigarette butts. I weaned myself off lattes about 18 months ago and now just drink doctored up coffee, but I stopped by Caribou with a coupon last week and got myself a vanilla latte with an extra shot of espresso – oh. my. goodness. Yummy. I had forgotten how fabulous a real latte can be. But McDonalds? Yuck. Get a box of General Foods International Coffee Drink mix instead – it’s better.

  • Rebeccat

    ChrisB, the reason we hang out with people like us is rooted in our sin nature. Just because the segregated hour is a relatively benign version of the same sinful impulse which has been used to justify wars, genocide, slavery and oppression doesn’t make it a neutral thing. Especially as the church, we cannot be one people if we can’t even come together across culture and race. As long as we remain in our comfy segregation, we cannot possibly represent the Kingdom of God – God obviously relishes differences and variety and we ought to ask Him to teach us to do the same.

  • qb-
    I’m largely an American microbrew guy, but Duvel is about as good as it gets. Any other Belgians to try of similar ilk?

  • qb

    Lukas, it’s wintertime, so it’s a great time to ‘speriment with the densely-flavored Belgian ales. New Belgium makes a nice knock-off, called “Trippel,” and it tastes a great deal like the magnificently estery Leffe Blonde. Not exactly a session brew! And beware: Leffe’s six-pack has 11-oz bottles instead of 12s, so the cost per ounce is higher than New Belgium’s Trippel.
    I dunno if you can get “Trois Monts” in the U. S., but it’s worth a try to find it. A bit better suited to lunchtime than a triple-malt blockbuster, but still sneaky strong.
    And, of course, one can do worse than Chimay blue. Standard, but nearly perfect.
    Happy brewing,