Tuesday, January 31, 2012
This quick drive down town was anything but quick with a myriad of cars and people colliding together in wonderment and amazement as stores were remodeled, streets temporarily renamed, tents put up and concerts blaring all in preparation for a 3 hour game on a Sunday Evening. In fact, it is estimated to fly from New York ( if a Giants fan) or the Boston area (if a Patriots fan), to get a hotel (minimum three nights reservation is required in Indianapolis and Indianapolis area), plus tickets, and food will cost on average $6,300. That is $2,100 per hour for a three hour game!!!
Now I like football, and I like the Superbowl, and I am downright giddy that the world’s most expensive money making product is in my own city, but there is something uneasy about the numbers involved here. I often like to think in terms of Worldvision, an organization that helps children in developing nations receive sponsor from other countries for about $30 a month to help pay for food, school, and health care. For the price tos go to the biggest football game of the year, you could sponsor a child to go to school, have sufficient food every day, and receive medicine for 210 months, or 17 years and six months.
There is nothing wrong with spending money, and there is nothing wrong with going to the Superbowl. Not everything we spend money on must go to a charity or church. With officials saying there will be approximately 68,000 seats available that means present spectators will have spent at least $428.4 million dollars. Those who are attending the game are spending as much money as it would cost to feed, educate, and vaccinate over 66,100 kids for 18 years!!! If you account the 3.5 million dollars per 30 seconds a commercial cost during the game, the money gambled, the food wasted, the cost of the teams and other bands and entertainment, we could easily provide over 100,000 children means to learn, eat, and be healthy until they reach adulthood in one single day!!!
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
The Messiah is described by prophets and Biblical writers as “The Lion of Judah.” “Judah” being the 4th son of Jacob whom is was prophesied that the liberator would come from and “Lion “being an incredibly powerful, intimidating, and cool animal. Yet, despite this awesome moniker, Jesus shows up vastly different than this roaming predator.
Revelation 5 is perhaps the greatest contrast to how Jesus sees himself, verses how the world perceives him. In this chapter of the apocalypse it is said that only the Lion of Judah is worthy to open the last scroll of revelation that would release the work of God in the end times. This seems to make sense because what is more powerful and worthy than a lion, the king of the forest? However, when Jesus shows up, he does not show up as the perceived destructive lion. Instead, Jesus reveals himself, worthy to open the final revelation of God, as a lamb. If this isn’t weak enough, Jesus goes a step further. He does not just reveal himself as a lamb, but as a slain, dead, sacrificed, bloody, mangled lamb.
Jesus is portrayed as a lame lamb, and a slaughtered one at that. You know who shows up as the almighty dragon? The Devil, the Prince of Lies, Satan, Deceiver, and enemy of God
The great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him. – Rev. 12:9
As I said the Son of God likes to mess with us. So what is being said here?
The dragon is often what we think about when we think of power; strong, ambitious, control, fierce, independent. The lamb (and a dead one at that) is small, weak, susceptible, dependent, and defenseless. Jesus conquers through the means of humility, evil attempts to conquer through violence.
SPOILER ALERT: Jesus wins, his kingdom lasts, the devil’s kingdom falls. What’s the lesson, surrender to God, forget your vain will, humble your pride, lay down your defenses, and join the victorious lamb that conquers. This is life, life that falls into the lap of a gracious, wonderful, and powerful God. Jesus is not looking to devour us, he is looking to draw us to him, and he does that through a display of true love; sacrifice. This is our salvation, this is our King, this is our example, to be sheep.
Thursday, January 5, 2012
There is much that many would agree must be changed. Unemployment is keeping many at home glued to the debates, dropping house prices have unsettled homeowners, an over-all failing economy have put many in poor demeanors. America will be waiting at the end of that infamous Tuesday in November to see who will be pioneering the changes needed in this nation.
While many are looking for the needed change in our country few are looking for the change that they can enact. Almost every election is followed by a collective collapse on the couch with the country waiting to see what will be done. We all want change because we see that we live in an imperfect society, but no one is willing to change themselves first.
The best policies in the world can improve the employment rate, but unless we are willing to change our attitudes of greed, laziness, and sense of entitlement, it will continue to be a greatly flawed system. Great tax breaks can be offered to help home sales, but until we are willing to change our values on life, family, and community, than the change will ultimately fail.
The many problems in our society cannot be affected by policy change, without personal, family, and community change. We have not put first things first; we have confused our values and have deflated the market on our character.
We have put possessions before family, we have put ease before character, we have put wealth before fairness, and we have put self before God.
Do you want life lasting, life impacting change, start with yourself, move to your family, than your neighborhood, you may never get past there, but even if you don’t that is a big impact you will leave.
Learn to do right!
Encourage the oppressed
Defend the cause of the fatherless,
Plead the case of the widow. Isaiah 1:17