Monday, March 31, 2008

Baseball is Here, All is Well! President Bush Booed!!

Thank you Lord for Baseball! Yes, I mean that. I love baseball, I live baseball, I hate the dark time between baseball seasons. The grass smells so sweet, the crack of the bat, the roar of the crowds, the knowledge that EVERY team is 0-0 and has a chance to win the World Series, it's all so awesome!
Last night I watched the opening game which featured the Washington Nationals versus the Atlanta Braves. It was a blast and a great game with a walk off home run.
Now, those of you not baseball fans, here is the other part.

President George W. Bush threw out the ceremonial first pitch and it was a great high fastball! He looked great and smiled great and I was very proud to watch him, knowing that no matter what goes on in the world, Baseball continues.

What bothered me was as the president was introduced, and all throughout his time on the mound, the crowd was about 50/50 cheers and boos. That is very disturbing. It shows a complete and utter lack of respect. I may not like this president, I may not like any of them, but that doesn't lessen my respect for the POSITION!!


We are a very disrespectful nation aren't we? Besides all the political stuff, heck, it's a BASEBALL game! How about just a cheer for a nice man who loves baseball and is throwing out the first pitch?

It really made me sick to watch.

No matter, BASEBALL goes on and my Beloved Dodgers start today, so GO DODGERS!!!!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Barack and Michelle Obama Make Some Big Bucks!!

Yep, Barack Obama and Michelle Obama live like the big boys they so much despise publicly.

From the Associated Press today:

WASHINGTON — Barack and Michelle Obama's annual income jumped to nearly $1.7 million the year he joined the U.S. Senate, fueled by earnings from a best-selling book and her promotion at a Chicago hospital, according to tax returns the Obama campaign released Tuesday.
The Illinois Democrat, who previously released his 2006 tax forms, made public his returns for the tax years 2000 through 2006. His campaign said in a statement that the disclosure was designed to put pressure on his opponent, New York Sen. Hillary Clinton, who has yet to release her recent returns but has promised to do so before April 15.
Arizona Sen. John McCain will release his tax returns next month, campaign spokeswoman Jill Hazelbaker said.
The Obamas earned $1.67 million in 2005 and $991,296 in 2006, the returns show. Their income spiked thanks mainly to the sales of his two books, "Dreams from My Father," first published in 1995, and "The Audacity of Hope," a best seller in 2006.
In 2005, Michelle Obama, an administrator at the nonprofit University of Chicago Hospitals, was promoted to vice president of community affairs, and her income rose to $316,962 from $121,910. She also earned $96,000 on two boards of directors in 2005 and 2006, including $63,000 from TreeHouse Foods. She quit that post last year because TreeHouse supplies Wal-Mart, whose policies her husband has criticized.
From 2000 to 2004, the couple's income ranged from $207,647 to 275,000.
In 2006, the Obamas reported giving $60,307 to charity, or about 6 percent of their income. From 2000 to 2004, they gave a total of $10,770, or less than 1 percent of the $1.2 million they earned during that period.
"As new parents who were paying off their large student loans, giving $10,000 to charity was as generous as they could be at the time," Obama spokesman Tommy Vietor said. The Obamas have two daughters, Malia, 9, and Sasha, 6.

Note their "generous" giving over the years. Sounds like most professing Christians doesn't it?

Anyway, so much for his "Pastor" and the whole "poor black man" thing.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Thoughts on Good Friday and Easter

I always approach Good Friday with mixed emotions. I am so grateful and thankful for what Christ did for me on the cross, but am so heart broken that He even HAD to do this. I found a picture of an empty cross, because IT IS EMPTY, AS IS THE TOMB!
Of course He didn't HAVE to, He wanted to. He wanted to restore our relationship with the Father.
Do you really understand what He did on the cross for you? Do you understand that from the moment of birth you are a sinner. You are separated from God due to that sin, and only by accepting the Blood of Christ as atonement for your sin can you restore that relationship?
Celebrate Easter with more than the baskets, bonnets and Peeps. Celebrate the crucified Son of God who is now seated at the right hand of God waiting to return and bring His own to Heaven!
I found a great description of Crucifixion and had to include it here.

Crucifixion: Jesus Faced a Horrible Death
Crucifixion sometimes began with a scourging or flogging of the victim’s back. The Romans used a whip called a flagrum, which consisted of small pieces of bone and metal attached to a number of leather strands. The number of blows given to Jesus is not recorded; however, the number of blows in Jewish law was 39 (one less than the 40 called for in the Torah, to prevent a counting error). During the scourging, the skin was ripped from the back, exposing a bloody mass of tissue and bone. Extreme blood loss occurred, often causing death, or at least unconsciousness. In addition to the flogging, Jesus faced severe beating and torment by the Roman soldiers, including the plucking of His beard and the piercing of His scalp with a crown of thorns.
After the flogging, the victim was often forced to carry his own crossbar, or patibulum, to the execution site. The patibulum could easily weigh 100 pounds. In the case of Jesus, the record shows that He may have carried His patibulum the distance of over two football fields. In a weak and tormented state, it’s no wonder the record establishes that Jesus needed a great deal of assistance.
Once the victim arrived at the execution site, the patibulum was put on the ground and the victim was forced to lie upon it. Spikes about 7 inches long and 3/8 of an inch in diameter were driven into the wrists. The spikes would hit the area of the median nerve, causing shocks of pain up the arms to the shoulders and neck.
Already standing at the crucifixion site would be the 7-foot-tall post, called a stipes. In the center of the stipes was a crude seat to “support” for the victim. The patibulum was then lifted on to the stipes, and the victim’s body was awkwardly turned on the seat so that the feet could be nailed to the stipes. At this point, there was tremendous strain put on the wrists, arms and shoulders, resulting in a dislocation of the shoulder and elbow joints. The position of the nailed body held the victim’s rib cage in a fixed position, which made it extremely difficult to exhale, and impossible to take a full breath.
Having suffered from the scourging, the beatings and the walk with the patibulum, Jesus was described as extremely weak and dehydrated. He was probably losing significant amounts of blood. As time passed, the loss of blood and lack of oxygen would cause severe cramps, spasmodic contractions and probably unconsciousness. Ultimately, the mechanism of death in crucifixion was suffocation. To breathe, the victim was forced to push up on his feet to allow for inflation of the lungs. As the body weakened and pain in the feet and legs became unbearable, the victim was forced to trade breathing for pain and exhaustion. Eventually, the victim would succumb in this way, becoming utterly exhausted or lapsing into unconsciousness so that he could no longer lift his body off the stipes and inflate his lungs. Due to the shallow breathing, the victim’s lungs would begin to collapse in areas, probably causing hypoxia. Due to the loss of blood from the scourging, the victim probably formed a respiratory acidosis, resulting in an increased strain on the heart, which beats faster to compensate. Fluid would also build up in the lungs. Under the stress of hypoxia and acidosis, the heart would eventually fail.
There are several different theories on the actual cause of death for Jesus. One theory is that there was a filling of the pericardium with fluid, which put a fatal strain on the ability of His heart to pump blood. Another theory states that Jesus died of cardiac rupture. Another theory is that Jesus' death was “multifactorial and related primarily to hypovolemic shock, exhaustion asphyxia and perhaps acute heart failure.” Regardless of the actual medical cause of final death, the historical record is very clear -- Jesus suffered numerous hours of horrible and sustained torture on the cross of Calvary.
Crucifixion: Jesus Suffered for You and Me
The crucifixion accounts of Jesus Christ are in entire agreement with the customs and practices of the Romans in that period. The evidence for Christ’s horrible and painful death is unquestioned by today’s legitimate scholars. The only dispute is the nature and character of the “criminal” Jesus Christ.
Look at the record yourself -- Even with all the pain, Jesus thought of others rather than Himself. His first words from the cross were, "Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do" (Luke 23:34). He thought of His mother, who stood by the cross weeping, and asked his beloved disciple John to take care of her. On either side of Jesus were two thieves executed at the same time. When one of them accepted Jesus as Lord, Jesus shared with him, "To day shalt thou be with Me in paradise" (Luke 23:43). Finally, Jesus expressed his complete surrender to the will of God as He said, "It is finished;" (John 19:30). "Father, into Thy hands I commend My spirit" (Luke 23:46).
Investigate the historical record, and then examine your heart. Jesus gave Himself willingly for you and me. Jesus suffered a horrible death for you and me. Jesus loved us so much that He willingly died in utter shame and pain for our sins. In fact, the Bible teaches us that He who was without sin was literally "made sin" for us. God, in human form, allowed himself to be made sin to save us. On the cross, he bore all the world's sin because of His love. The only way to complete His story of love is to love Him in return.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

The End Is .........HERE

Yes friends, the end is here.
As the biggest Dodger fan in the world, I was saddened when I first heard that the Dodgers would be moving from Vero Beach, Florida (better known as Dodgertown) to Glendale, Arizona. Now it is done.
Ok so this isn't some big political news, but one of my life long dreams was to sit in the stands at Holman Field and watch my beloved Dodgers during Spring Training and now alas, it will never happen. Of course being closer now, in Arizona, I may see them more but this is tradition!
All of my Dodger life, I knew that the Original Boys of Summer, the Dodgers would be in Dodgertown if I could ever get there.
So, even though I do pray to the Big Dodger in the Sky (you do know of course He is a Dodger fan right?), they moved anyway.
So, life goes on.
Found a great story on the move today to explain it better:
It was perhaps decades overdue, and it's hardly as painful as the Dodgers' move from Brooklyn to Los Angeles. But Monday marked, in all probability, the Dodgers' exit from their spring complex in Vero Beach, Fla., a.k.a. Dodgertown.
"It was kind of a blue feeling," Tommy Lasorda told the New York Times, "to know I'm going to leave this place behind, leave the people here, leave the church I went to."
Lasorda, who first arrived as a 19-year-old pitching prospect, leaves as an 80-year-old guest of honor. The Dodgers expect to move next season to Glendale, Ariz., ending a run that began in 1948. Sights and sounds of the send-off:
• Lasorda got a military-style salute of sorts, exiting under the crossed bats of current players.
• The Los Angeles Times noted that one radio reporter was moved to tears when former Dodgers pitcher Carl Erskine played the national anthem on a harmonica. Erskine, 81, was the starting pitcher in the first game at Holman Stadium in 1953.
• Dodgers owner Frank McCourt said the street signs and light posts topped with baseballs will be moved to Arizona or put on display at Dodger Stadium.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Keizer Police Hard at Work!

Ok, so I'm minding my own business, sitting watching tv, an old mobster movie when lo and behold I glance at a movement in the corner of my eye and see two cops at my back sliding glass door!!
Sheesh! What the heck?
So, I slowly open the door, with my hands out very clearly and say "what's up fellas?"

Turns out someone had reported that they heard screaming coming from near here and they had the wrong house, it was next door. I go outside and there are five police cars and cops all over my front and back yard!!!

I don't know what finally happened but I can tell you, after I cleaned up and changed, I feel a heck of a lot safer now knowing that if I ever do anything illegal and my neighbors call, I will be taken care of!

Seriously, the Keizer Police do a great great job and I am glad that they were here to take care of what may have been a serious problem! So here's to them!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Barack Obama Backs off his Pastor

Barack Obama has done exactly as I predicted and has backed away from his "pastor". (Please see the video below)

Though distancing himself from Rev. Wright, he still calls him "pastor" and "spirtual mentor" and more.

Here is the story that came out today:

On Friday, Mr. Obama called a grab bag of statements by his longtime minister, the Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr., “inflammatory and appalling.”
“I reject outright the statements by Rev. Wright that are at issue,” he wrote in a campaign statement that was his strongest in a series of public disavowals of his pastor’s views over the past year.

Earlier in the week, several television stations played clips in which Mr. Wright, of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, referred to the United States as the “U.S. of K.K.K. A.” and said the Sept. 11 attacks were a result of corrupt American foreign policy.

On Friday, Senator John McCain’s campaign forwarded to reporters an article in The Wall Street Journal in which Mr. Wright was quoted as saying, “Racism is how this country was founded and how this country is still run,” and accusing the United States of importing drugs, exporting guns and training murderers.

Later in the day, Rush Limbaugh dwelled on Mr. Wright in his radio program, calling him “a race-baiter and a hatemonger.”
In the statement he released a few hours later, Mr. Obama, known for his uplifting messages about national unity, professed a certain innocence about his pastor’s most incendiary messages.
“The statements that Rev. Wright made that are the cause of this controversy were not statements I personally heard him preach while I sat in the pews of Trinity or heard him utter in private conversation,” he said.

The eight-paragraph statement, first posted on the Web site The Huffington Post, did not recount Mr. Wright’s claims but addressed concerns about whether his beliefs reflected Mr. Obama’s. “He has never been my political adviser,” Mr. Obama wrote. “He’s been my pastor.”

Mr. Obama has belonged to Trinity for two decades. He was married by Mr. Wright, and his two daughters were baptized by him.
Mr. Obama credits a sermon of Mr. Wright’s, “The Audacity of Hope,” with drawing him to Christianity, and he used those words as the title of his second book.
But the evening before he announced his campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination, Mr. Obama started to distance himself from Mr. Wright, canceling an invocation he had asked the minister to give at his presidential announcement.

Mr. Wright, 66, who last month fulfilled longstanding plans to retire, is a beloved figure in African-American Christian circles and a frequent guest in pulpits around the country. Since he arrived at Trinity in 1972, he has built a 6,000-member congregation through his blunt, charismatic preaching, which melds detailed scriptural analysis, black power, Afrocentrism and an emphasis on social justice; Mr. Obama praised the last quality in Friday’s statement.

His most powerful influence, said several ministers and scholars who have followed his career, is black liberation theology, which interprets the Bible as a guide to combating oppression of African-Americans.

He attracts audiences because of, not in spite of, his outspoken critiques of racism and inequality, said Dwight Hopkins, a professor at the University of Chicago Divinity School, in an interview last year.

But Mr. Wright’s blistering statements about American racism can shock white audiences.
“If you’re black, it’s hard to say what you truly think and not upset white people,” said James Cone, a professor at Union Theological Seminary and the father of black liberation theology, who has known Mr. Wright since he was a seminary student.
Mr. Wright is no longer on Mr. Obama’s African American Religious Leadership Committee, though Mr. Obama’s aides would not elaborate on the circumstance of his departure, and Mr. Wright did not answer a message left on his cellphone requesting an interview.

The minister’s defenders say the statements that have been playing this week on television are outliers, taken out of context, and that he is not antiwhite. The United Church of Christ, the denomination of the Chicago church, is overwhelmingly white. And Mr. Wright is an equal opportunity critic, often delivering scorching lectures about black society, telling audiences to improve their education and work ethic.
“I can remember Jeremiah saying in probably half his sermons: Everyone who’s your color ain’t your kind,” Richard Sewell, a church member, said in an interview last year.

One of the statements that have been most replayed this week comes from the sermon Mr. Wright delivered following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
“We have supported state terrorism against the
Palestinians and black South Africans, and now we are indignant because the stuff we have done overseas is now brought right back to our own front yards,” he said. “America’s chickens are coming home to roost.”

Asked in an interview last March to explain the sermon, Mr. Wright said he had been questioning the country’s desire for vengeance against the perpetrators, counseling his congregants to look inward instead.

Immediately after the attacks, the country’s response was “to pay back and kill,” he said. But before it got “holier than thou,” he said, the nation should have considered how its own policies had led to the events of that day. (Last year, Mr. Obama said, “The violence of 9/11 was inexcusable and without justification,” and added that he and his wife were at home on the day of the sermon, tending to their new baby.)
In the interview last spring, Mr. Wright expressed frustration at the breach in relationship with Mr. Obama, saying the candidate had already privately said that he might need to distance himself from his pastor. But perhaps the two could repair things, said Mr. Wright, pointing out that Mr. Obama’s opponent, Senator
Hillary Rodham Clinton, had faced worse.
“At least there are no semen stains on any dresses,” Mr. Wright said, one of several digs he has taken at the Clintons.
“That kind of frankness scares people in the campaign,” he added.

I still have some questions for Barack Hussein Obama and I can't ask them any better than a man named Jay whom I have met in the blogger world. I humbly ask his permission to print the following from his blog:

Some questions for Barack Obama:
1. Do you believe that the HIV virus was invented by the United States government in order to commit genocide against people of color? If not, then why did you sit under a pastor for twenty years, who preaches that?

2. Do you believe that America deserved the attacks of 2001? If not, then why did you ask a minister who does believe it to perform your wedding ceremony and to baptize your children?

3. Do you believe that the United States government gives illegal drugs to people? If not, then why did you quote a minister who believes it in the title of your book, The Audacity of Hope?

4. Do you believe that God has damned or should damn America? If not, then why are you a member of a church where the minsiter said repeatedly, “God damn America”?

If my church pastor preached things that I completely disagreed with, I would probably choose to attend a different church. Your pastor is your spiritual teacher and adviser, and if you believe that his teachings are wrong, then you should no longer submit to his leadership.

The Reverend Jeremiah Wright has been Barack Obama’s pastor for many years, and now Obama has condemned many of his recorded statements. What’s going on? Why did Obama listen to him preach all those years, but now, when his presidential hopes are at stake, Obama condemns some of his statements.

This is not just a casual acquaintance or a peripheral political supporter. This is the minister who performed his wedding ceremony and who baptized his children. This is the minister whose words he quoted in the title of his book, The Audacity of Hope. For about 20 years, he has been Obama’s spitirual mentor.

So why were Wright’s beliefs acceptable to Obama for the last twenty years, but now they are not?

Friday, March 14, 2008

Barack Obama and His Preacher

He prayed with him before deciding to run for the Presidency.
He has attended the church and sought spiritual advice from him for over 20 years.
He still seeks his advice.

Barack Obama and the Reverend Jeremiah Wright of the Trinity United Church of Christ (not to be confused with or affiliated with THE Church of Christ denomination) is who I am writing about today.

I have attached a recent sermon from the REVEREND. I want you to pay close attention to not only what he says but watch the people in the audience.
Is this what church is supposed to be like?
I thought we came to church to praise God, worship Him, bless Him, learn about Him, pray to Him, seek Him, glorify Him, sing to Him etc etc. Can you imagine going to church and hearing this type of preaching? Feel like worshiping God after that?
Evidently, Barack Obama goes to church for other reasons.

You also have to ask Barack, "when you heard some of this stuff, especially while running for president, why didn't you RUN from this church?"
I shudder to think of this man as "spiritual" advisor to our next possible president.

Now, I don't want to hear arguments about how "black culture" is different from ours. MY God is the same for everyone. MY God never instructed us in HIS Word to speak in such a way about others.
I could go on and on but don't need to, the video speaks for itself.

There are many more of his sermons on YouTube, but most have such foul language (yes, in church) that I can't put them on here. Also if you google him you will find these sermons in print.
Heck, if you are in the ministry or considering preaching, you can even download "advice on preaching" from him!

God forgive this agent of Satan. God help those being led astray by this False Prophet. God please help our Nation to fall on our knees and beg for forgiveness for our evil ways.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

'Gilligan's Island' Actress Dawn Wells Caught With Dope!!

Well, I guess you just have to separate the actor from the part. LOL!! Dang, and she was the sweet farm girl too!

This undated photo, supplied by the Teton County Sheriff's Department, shows Dawn Wells, the actress who played 'Mary Ann' on Gilligan's Island, who was sentenced Feb. 29, 2008, to five days in jail, fined $410.50 and placed on probation in Idaho after pleading guilty to one count of reckless driving. The guilty plea came as part of an agreement with prosecutors in which three misdemeanor counts -- driving under the influence, possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of a controlled substance stemming from an Oct. 18, traffic stop -- were dropped.(AP Photo/Teton County Sheriff's Department )

Can you believe she is 69 years old? Sheesh, we's all gettin' old!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Time Is Really Flying!

Today, at our church, Salem Evangelical, we celebrated what God has done in our church by our gifts to him to build a new Children's Center. This undertaking is huge and will only happen if it is God's will. How much did we collect today? Don't know. Did we collect enough? Don't know.

The thing is, as I took part in the services, many thoughts went through my mind. Mostly memories.

I am one who lives in the past much of my time. Not proud of it, but I tend to do that. Partly due to my love of history and partly because I hate change!

I thought about how many great things God had done for me in our old sanctuary (IT IS NOT THE EAST SANCTUARY JIM, IT'S THE OLD SANCTUARY).

I watched Kai bond with his buddies in plays, musicals, baptisms, etc.

I remember Colleen and I running to the altar once many years ago to repent of our lifestyles and return to God.

I remember children recieving Christ there, adults returning to God, families restored, baptisms, great evenings of fellowship, the beginning of the prayer service and so much more.

Now we have the NEW sanctuary and are building a future for our children and grandchildren.

I wanted to share a few pictures I found on my computer of the times that were special to me and by doing that, realizing how many NEW special times will come in the new building. It is so exciting to be on the ground floor and see what God will do.

This was a great night, Colleen and Kai were baptized on the same night by Randy!

That was a night that only happened once, both of our parents were together. My mom and dad on the right, Colleen's on the left. Her dad Sonny is waiting in Heaven for us now!

Those little boys are all big ol' high school kids now! Acorns to Oaks!