Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Monday, November 10, 2008
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Monday, October 13, 2008
The truth is, I hardly have an appreciation for his accomplishments and determination. That is a factor of the inherited lack of respect in education and in society as a whole that Columbus receives. He has been so thoroughly dissed and dismissed by academia (in the past 30 years) disregard for this new world hero has been thoroughly diffused throughout our society. Is this fair? I don't know.
But history wasn't always so hard on Columbus. A few of the thousands of Columbus memorials around the world are pictured here, including the D.C. memorial (center) for which over 200,000 people showed up for its unveiling under President Taft.
At the far left is the more modern Columbus memorial in Philadelphia. And below, Barcelona's towering memorial.
Google, my recent whipping boy, chose to highlight Paddington Bear's 50th birthday -not a figure to be trifled with for sure - but over Christopher Columbus?
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
They signed a petition that marked out the ground
Saying, "This half is lost, and this half is found.
He's to be tossed, she's to be crowned,
and so on and so forth their future was bound."
The lawyers and statesmen shook hands and agreed
Smiled for the photo and planted a seed
Crammed in some tears, said a quick prayer
Mumbled some lines like, "We'll clean up the air
We'll blow up some stars, and detox the tar!"
He mumbled then burped then jumped in his car
And never again was the beast in their story
They buried the past in all of its glory
Never a whimper, never a notion
They banned all seduction, not even an ocean
Well its castles to ruins and motion to cease
They sliced off his head for the ruin of the beast
(Stephen Delopoulos, 'The Ruin of the Beast')
Thursday, September 25, 2008
Baltimore Dog Magazine (Fall 2008) features an article entitled "The Raw Truth," chronicling a "new evolution" in dog feeding. Apparently the raw deer meet and chopped bones my girlfriend was feeding to Fido while housesitting is part of a brilliant discovery. Dogs don't just love raw meat, it's better for them. The irony is that our pampered canine children will now be eating the chopped pieces of their own animal species. It appears that dogs are inferior afterall- they're carnivrous. While we content ourselves with soy beef and rabbit food, our domestic beasts are feasting on animal blood. Savages!
Thursday, September 11, 2008
I was just wondering- for all the fun, interesting, and historical notes Google makes by altering it's logo, why the silence today?
Surely the greatest tragedy of modern American history deserves something.
There are a variety of strange and disturbing notions that I am picking up on, seven years down the road.
1) We, the United States of America, deserved 9-11, so we're actually embarassed by it
2) Bush has become such a villain in American eyes, and since 9-11 is practically his doing, we ignore it
3) What happened on September 11, 2001?
I wonder what sketchy knowledge, if any, my 14 year old students have of the event. Should I bring in pictures?
Friday, June 6, 2008
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
Wednesday, April 2, 2008
Thursday, March 20, 2008
Today I spent away a sizable tax refund on paying off three separate private education loans. It is such a relief to be free of these relatively higher interest debts (9-12%). The rest of my college was paid for by Northwestern's endowment and federally subzisdized loans with fixed interest rates of around 6%. It was only until December of this year that I managed not to carry a credit card balance since my second year of college. I say this, because in general I feel like I have been overall responsible with money. I've tried to avoid being a slave to it, while at the same time not being afraid to use it to my advantage. Credit cards in college allowed me to experience a lot of things that I would have been left out of, and still manage to purchase the required textbooks. I remember accidentally missing a monthly payment during my junior year of college and watching my interest rate skyrocket. I am no math major, but I realized that at the rate I had, even on a relatively small balance, it would literally take years at the minimum payment to pay the debt off. I told the friendly customer service operator this, and after haggling, I got my low interest rate back. Just like that, a click of the button. I think that's when I realized for the first time, fully, the fact that the credit card company really didn't want me to pay them back. When I realized that I was sort of disgusted, but I also knew that the joke was on me. I could plead ignorance, or I could face the music. There's a price for everything- it was my debt after all. My road trips, bar tab, spring break...
Wednesday, March 19, 2008
Vicki Van Meter died Saturday night, it was reported today, of a self-inflicted gunshot wound at age 26. I remember reading about her cross country flight at age 11. As I think back, it was one of those things that inspired me to take flying my lessons myself.
I wonder if God met her in the clouds. When you fly, you do feel a bit more free, a bit closer to Him, "with wings like eagles."
Monday, March 10, 2008
On Saturday, Immanuel OPC in Bellmawr celebrated my parents "50 years of love a devotion" -30 years of marriage and 20 years of ministry at Immanuel. It was so overwhelming to be reminded of how much my family has been loved and cared for over the years!
Monday, February 25, 2008
But one might counter, I myself am no Edward.
Thursday, February 21, 2008
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Hello, my name is Asahel and if you are thinking that I have an interesting name- you are absolutely right. My name, Asahel, is Hebrew, and it can be translated as "God Works." I want to share with you how the meaning of my name- God works- has proven true in my life.
I am more of a college basketball fan than anything else, so I hope no one will be offended if I rag on the NBA for a minute. It's not uncommon to see in an NBA game a player who just really thinks a lot of themselves. And you know how you can tell? Every time they get called for a foul they get so bent out of shape, making all sorts of faces and gestures and yelling at the referees. Now I understand there is subjectivity in the interpretation of the rules, and refs do get the wrong call at times, but even so, the reaction of the player tells me one thing- that the player thinks he is really great. He thinks that he is above doing wrong! Or that the rules shouldn't apply! Or that that referee is such an idiot! You see, whether or not a foul was actually committed, it is a sense of superiority that guides the players poor attitude.
Well, the truth is, so many of us, including myself, live life in such a similar way. Since the day I was born I have gone around thinking much too highly of myself, and while I claim to be humble, the truth is revealed every time I lose my patience with someone, react poorly, blame someone else, criticize others. Let me give you an example- I am an 8th grade English teacher, and as you can imagine, that takes a lot of patience. Much of my day is spent wrestling with the students for their attention rather than exploring the wonders of the English language. And you know what? Some days I really lose it, I blow up, yell and say smart things back at the kids. It's terribly wrong, and it reveals something of my heart every time. I think I deserve better! I think I am such a great teacher that my students should be wrapped in awe every time I open my mouth. No it doesn't excuse the students behavior, and neither does it make it ok when that NBA referee makes the wrong call, but I'm still responsible for my reaction, and my reaction reveals a proud heart that thinks way too much of itself.
And isn't that the way it is through all of life. Despite the tough things that we encounter from day to day- whether it's homework, being made fun of at school, parents who won't let you go out on weeknights, kids with bad attitudes, unresponsive husbands and wives, or the stress of work- we also seem to know how to make those difficulties ten times worse with our reaction to them! We think we deserve better!
There's a verse in the Bible that says, "There is no one righteous, not one." Even though I am prone to think that I have it all together, the Bible tells me that perfect obedience is out of reach for the sinner. Fortunately, the Bible also says this, "We know God's love for us in this, that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." It's a strange concept- someone dying for you. Despite our proud hearts, Jesus Christ gave up everything. He had to suffer and die so that we could be forgiven of our failings. In other words, grace came into the equation of life so that instead of being punished for our pride we receive blessing far greater than we can imagine.
I was blessed to have God impress this truth upon my heart at an early age in my life, but man, I feel like I am still learning what this actually means. It means recognizing that I am not deserving of anything. It means that in gratitude for what Christ has done for me, I should extend grace to others. And as I humble myself before God in the light of his amazing grace, God has indeed worked in my life and blessed me tremendously. Not in a Joel Osteen, have faith and get rich sort of way, but in ways far greater and meaningful. The least of which is that he has given me a family of believers, a church, who care and look after me, and whom I also can love and care for in return.
If this seems absolutely strange to you, you are not alone. During his earthly life Jesus Christ spent a lot of time with people who couldn't understand his message. Time after time, Jesus responded to doubters and seekers alike by trying to do one thing – to show them their hearts. From the women at the well, to the Pharisee leaders of his day, to his own disciples, Christ responded in a wide variety of ways, but each time, his purpose was to open his listeners' eyes to the hardness of their own hearts and their need for Him and his sacrifice. It's the same with you. God wants to show you your heart, and the depth of its fallen state. Until you see that truth, you'll never understand your need for a savior.
Saturday, February 16, 2008
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
My brother has the distinction of having at least 5 women in his life who married the next man they dated after him. At 25, this makes him nervous.
Wednesday, January 30, 2008
It is a strange facebook world we live in, but it is what it is. Sometimes I don't know whether to approve or disapprove? And I wonder why we're so afraid of being known anyway? Eighteenth century new england towns (think Salem) have made a comeback in the form of an online village, and I'm not sure whether its gossip, voyeurism, or keeping in touch!
Sunday, January 13, 2008
Do we waste a lot of time thinking about how to dam up the river? Stupid beavers.
A metaphor with a lot of potential for sure.