Saturday, February 22, 2014

The Wrong Door

Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
—1 Peter 5:8 

It was Friday afternoon, and I couldn’t wait for my “Friday Night Write,” which is what I dubbed my time set aside to write my weekly devotion. I sunk into the couch cushions with my laptop over my knees and logged on.  Suddenly lines of text scrolled across the screen and a bright light flashed from my webcam. Then a warning took over the entire window: Your computer has been blocked.
I read on. Apparently I was suspected of one of a myriad of serious infractions, such as copyright violations, use of unlicensed software, spamming, and terrorism.  Terrorism? Clearly they have me mixed up with someone else!
My heart beat fast. What should I do?  Call the police? But it wasn’t a 911 emergency and it was already after office hours.
I continued to read. Then I noticed something in the wording was askew. It didn’t line up.  This is a hoax!  A virus!  Ugh. Now what?

Saturday, February 15, 2014

My Most Romantic Valentine

A little deviation from my usual post...

I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine.
—Song of Solomon 6:3 

“Really? But I’m trying to write my blog post.” Still in my pajamas and propped up on pillows, I hammer away at the keyboard—in between checking Facebook, of course. I read my friends’ posts and like their Valentine’s pictures.

“Shut it down. Let’s go for a walk.”
“Huh?  It’s 8:30 in the morning.”
“Put your sneakers on.”
“But what about my sprain?  The doctor said…”
“Put your sneakers on.” (Psalm 37:23)
I trust you, so I dress quickly. I slip on my sneakers. Hmm…my foot doesn’t feel too bad. I think I can do this. (Philippians 4:13)
"Could we drive to the dumpster first?" I ask. "I have a pile of junk to get rid of." (Ephesians 4:31)

You smile and nod, as if that were all part of your plan in the first place.

I drive to the barnyard dumpster and am careful to avert the muddy ruts left by those who have been here before. I would hate to get stuck in this mess. Quickly, I throw out a bag of garbage and a box of things that weren't working. Whew!  It feels good to pitch them.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Church, Out of the Mouths of Teens

And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
—Hebrews 10:24-25
Out of the mouths of babes. Out of the mouths of teenagers (smh). For those of you not well-versed in text language, “smh” stands for “shaking my head.”  It took me a while to catch on myself, but as a teacher of teens, I need to keep up.
Yes, I shake my head at what comes out of their mouths, but the truth is some of what they say gives me pause—like their responses to a recent assignment. Given a three-column chart, students were directed to identify and classify ten structures they pass on their way from home to school.  In the third column, they were supposed to describe the purpose of the structure.
While I expected that many would list a nearby church in the first column, I did not expect how they would fill in the remaining columns.  Some classified the church as a commercial building. And others described it this way:  “To worship your religion,” “To worship religions,” “To practice religion,” and “For people to feel holly [sic].”