Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas Blues

Christmas is over, and the new year is rapidly on its way. One of the things that has increasingly annoyed me in recent years is the absolute lack of knowledge our people have about this holiday.

People who call themselves Christians, sing all the songs, say all the right "Christmasy" things just don't have a clue. They talk about about the "spirit of Christmas" like they define it themselves.

Now, I have no problem with Christmas trees, colored lights, exchanging gifts, no problem at all, and enjoy that time with my family; and I don't even really have a problem with Santa Claus, as long the story is kept in perspective. After all, that story started with a 3rd century monk in present day Turkey--he was a good guy whose story outgrew him.

As for what we celebrate, even when the point turns to the Christ-child, most get it wrong. Jesus was born in a manger. Shepherds came to worship, angels attended, some time later the wise men came (maybe three, maybe more, it's not important). Except for one appearance at the temple, history is pretty quiet about him until He was about 30 years old. Everyone is so busy celebrating the birth they forget about the reason He came: to suffer, die and rise again to save sinners.

Maybe it's because no one, myself included, really likes to admit that we're sinners, and need saving. We can't save ourselves, our friends, family, life work..., nothing can save us but the shed blood of Jesus Christ.

Yes, he taught his disciples and many others, and the record of His is written down for our benefit in the Gospels; but the the teaching is not the reason he came. He came as the final sacrifice to save His people from their sins. This part is omitted by the bulk of the populace as they celebrate--when they bother to acknowledge him at all.

So, as we look back on how we celebrated, let's look forward to why we'll do it again next year, and make sure we get it right.

Email stories

I'm often barraged with emails sent by well meaning people who don't stop to really read or think about what it is they're passing along.
I got one a while back, from someone in the medical profession no less, claiming the information came from a report out of "John Hopkins University" I'm not really that well schooled as to medicine, but long ago I learned that it's "Johns Hopkins," Johns having been an old family name or something like that. Nearly all the content of the missive had been around for years, and been debunked by either or long ago. The rest of it was so hokey it screamed fake; yet it was sent on.
Others emails are a bit more difficult to debunk, but a few minutes of work will usually take care of it. Some of them are gut wrenching stories about a sick or injured child, a family in need, things like that. Some of them are even true, or at least were, but are generally inflated, and often so old that the sick child has recovered, and is now a married adult, or the family tragedy is long past! Some take on a religious slant, often about taking God out of our culture. Though the point is often valid, the stories are usually patently false.
It is particularly bothersome that most of these emails seem to be of interest to those on the conservative side of the political spectrum. I fear that those on "our side" of the political house who don't either take the time to do the research and thus pass on this drivel are merely fueling the fire of the liberals who deride us for being ignorant and naive.
So, let's pay attention to what we're sending on, huh? I don't send on anything I can't verify, or at least qualify as true to the best of my knowledge--I don't even read a lot of it. That means I just trash much of what I get. If it's not worth verifying, it's not worth passing on. Spreading false information only weakens the impact when we're right


Most people get on their soap boxes when they are pontificating on a matter. Somewhere in a conversation recently, I made the comment about getting on my ammo box, thus the title of this blog.

This will be a running commentary on things that amuse me, annoy me, puzzle me, or otherwise interest me enough to put something in writing. Since I am an outspoke Christian, very conservative, a second ammendment supporter, and everything else that conservatives should be, most of what I write will likely offend liberals, and hopefully make other conservatives think a little outside the box, as I fear sometimes we are so caught up in our own little worlds we miss the bigger picture.

It's more a running personal journal than a public document. It's not going to be spell-checked; the punctuation might be missing or wrong. It's just my thought process, put down on (virtual) paper.