November 26, 2007

[soo-per-stish-uhn]

su·per·sti·tion

–noun
1. a belief or notion, not based on reason or knowledge, in or of the ominous significance of a particular thing, circumstance, occurrence, proceeding, or the like.
2. a system or collection of such beliefs.
3. a custom or act based on such a belief.
4. irrational fear of what is unknown or mysterious, esp. in connection with religion.
5. any blindly accepted belief or notion.

superstitious

c.1386, from O.Fr. superstitieux, from L. superstitiosus, from superstitionem (nom. superstitio) "prophecy, soothsaying, excessive fear of the gods," perhaps originally "state of religious exaltation," related to superstes (gen. superstitis) "standing over or above," also "standing by, surviving," from superstare "stand on or over, survive," from super "above" (see super-) + stare "to stand," from PIE base *sta- "to stand" (see stet). There are many theories for the L. sense development, but none has yet triumphed. Superstition is attested from 1402. In Eng., originally especially of religion; sense of "unreasonable notion" is from 1794.

...Now in thinking about the supernatural and word associations with the word superstitious I find the whole thing interesting. When the word superstition is mentioned people associate it with fear and irrationality. It is interesting to note that in 1402 the word had more of a religious meaning to it while in 1794 it was equated with unreasonable. That is strictly due to the main philosophy of that time and place; the enlightenment(I think that's what it was called). The main virtues of that time were reason and knowledge not blind faith.

As christians we are ultimately superstitious. We believe in the supernatural. A virgin birth, a rising from the dead and apocalyptic event(s) with supernatural overtones to it. We believe in an invisible spiritual realm and in angels and demons. We believe in miracles. I personally believe that the existence of hope is supernatural. When did fear ever come into this? and why?

John Wesley stressed the importance of reason but not at the expense of blind faith.

November 21, 2007

pondering astrology

A couple weeks ago Melissa and I spent some time with my father in law and her new fiance'. We've known her for awhile and love here so she's basically my mother in law already. We had a good family get together as we celebrated our birthdays early. Melissa's is the 18th, mine the 23rd. Discussion of our birthdays soon went into personalities according to the calendar (my soon to be mother inlaw is into and very knowledgable about astrology). She said (something like) that scorpios (Melissa's sign) are incredibly passionate and very orderly with a lot of leadership qualities, and they are usually extraverted. She was right on about that. Than she said that sagitarrius'(my sign) are very laid back, calming and introverted but since I was on the cusp of being a scorpio I had some of that within me too. So I'm laid back but when the time is needed to get down to business I am right there on top of it. She read me like a book I thought to myself.

On our ride home that night Melissa and I talked about this phenemenon. We considered all the scorpios and sagitarrius' that we know and found that each one was either dead on or close to the descriptions according to what we heard earlier that night. We've heard about this "personality based on astrological signs" idea before. Even as followers of Christ we acknowleged the possibility of this phenemenon being a part of God's creative and incredibly detailed order. There are a million thoughts to think about concerning this. If this was true it wouldn't negate the christian faith but rather uphold it. Almost like a scientific truth with supernatural tones to it because it points to something "greater than ourselves". This "greater thing" leads to religion and spirituality and as we all know there are many religions. Right there is where it starts to get a little messy and controversial.

I also remain skeptical and can throw this phenemenon out the window and consider it merely a coincidence.

...just some thoughts that could get me into trouble.

November 16, 2007

Eagles and Tryptophan


This year has been both very exciting and very transitional and very busy. This year has been a challenge that I am enjoying very much. There is beauty in exercise and even beauty in struggle. These days I can start to feel it. So I'll stop and notice the beauty within this adventure called life. I am on vacation. Sweet. My love's birthday is coming soon and mine as well. Turkey Day. Tryptophan. Resting in His love.

Why would you ever complain, O Jacob, or, whine, Israel, saying, "God has lost track of me. He doesn't care what happens to me"? Don't you know anything? Haven't you been listening? God doesn't come and go. God lasts. He's Creator of all you can see or imagine. He doesn't get tired out, doesn't pause to catch his breath. And he knows everything, inside and out. He energizes those who get tired, gives fresh strength to dropouts. For even young people tire and drop out, young folk in their prime stumble and fall. But those who wait upon God get fresh strength. They spread their wings and soar like eagles, they run and don't get tired, they walk and don't lag behind.

end of Isaiah 40, the message

November 01, 2007

october has left


mmm. It was fun while it lasted but now it's November. The sky is grey and the air is cold. The nights are getting longer, the leaves have peaked and the noise has finally gone. Thank you Jesus.

As I've said before, october is not my favorite time in Salem but I have been dealing with it. Fellowship with the Gathering has helped me to deal. I think it's wise to say that halloween is not going away anytime soon and since my city (I'm starting to sound like that guy in Braveheart who says "my island!") is obsessed with halloween it is definitely here to stay. So why not join the craziness? WWJD? I think part of what He would do is crash the party. This seems like the underlying mission and attitude of the Gathering & friends during the month of october. It was my first year officially with the Gathering during october and I am happy to have served with everyone. I am already praying, thinking and looking forward to next october. Meanwhile, I am here relaxing and gearing down for a slower pace as autumn calls me to wind down a little.

~Lord, God may everyone who came to Salem this past month be blessed by Your spirit and remember You. In Jesus, name