False Dichotomies

My question for Wiley et al. is this: what is the basis for your cartoon here? The existence of dinosaurs preceding humans in no way contradicts the chronology of the creation narratives found in Genesis 1-2 and totally misses the point of the narratives. The Hebrew word for day used in Genesis, yom, can mean in the context of Genesis, a period of time and also an event, as in a creative event. So here we apparently have yet another attempt to create a false dichotomy between the creation narratives and science. Why? Simply put, Genesis was never written as or intended to be a book of science so don’t treat it as such. Read it for what it is.

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Remembering Dad

JFM at BooteryMy dad died ten years ago today. It seems like he has been gone forever and while the pain of his death is no longer with me, I still miss him today as much as I did on that Monday ten years ago when I learned that he had died. I miss hearing his voice. I miss his sense of humor. I miss his wisdom. I miss his presence in our family. I miss playing catch with him. I miss him.

I am thankful God blessed me with a wonderful father for 50 years of my life. My dad remains my personal hero in so many ways, not least in the quality of his fatherhood and all that that entails. He handled the daunting tasks of shepherding his family, running a business, and being a community leader. He led his life with integrity and optimism, always the telltale marks of a faithful Christian. In his last years, he faced his physical infirmity with courage and dignity that was both inspiring and heartbreaking to watch. Remarkable. Simply remarkable.

Thank you for being my dad. Life’s not the same without you, papa. Never will be again.  I’ll try to be the kind of father to my kids that you were to me but I doubt I can do that because you set the bar pretty high. Even so, it is worth my best effort. I’m glad you are enjoying your rest in the Lord and look forward to seeing you again someday, never again having to endure the emptiness of being apart from you. That’s a good thing because even this temporary separation seems like an eternity. Can’t imagine what the real thing must be like.

In the meantime, I’ll try to honor you and your legacy by how I comport myself. As mom used to remind me, I’ll do my best to remember who I am (and to Whom I belong).

I love you, papa.

Happy Birthday, Mr. President

Abraham Lincoln pictureToday is Abraham Lincoln’s birthday. He would be 205 years old! The president is one of my heroes, primarily because of the role he played in saving this country. Mr. Lincoln had a wonderful spirit about him and his humility, compassion, and willingness to forgive his enemies arguably saved this country from a terrible aftermath following our Civil War. Reconstruction was hard enough as it was, but at least we did not have guerrilla warfare to contend with, something that would have probably done us in as a country forever.

We healed as well as any country could following a civil war. If you don’t believe me, check out other countries who have suffered through a civil war. Most of the time it didn’t turn out well. The reason our country’s reconstruction went relatively well is because of president Lincoln. He set the tone for U.S. Grant and the other Union commanders by insisting that they treat the vanquished with dignity and respect. Lincoln insisted that the rebels would not be treated harshly or punitively and as a result, everyone else followed suit, including the Confederate commanders.

Of course, this wasn’t all Lincoln’s doing, but as president he set the tone for others to follow. It would have been just as easy to hang all the rebel commanders and make life miserable for the vanquished. But Lincoln knew better. He knew how that would turn out. It would have been interesting to see how much more quickly we would have healed as a nation had Lincoln lived to serve a full second term. Instead, the zealots and self-righteous decided to “fix” Lincoln’s initial proposals for reconstruction and nearly managed to destroy all that president Lincoln had sought to establish in the process.

I am convinced God put Abraham Lincoln in our history for a reason. His presidency is more evidence that God has blessed this country. Whether that blessing continues today is debatable.  But that’s a different story for a different day. Today, it is fitting that all Americans honor our 16th president and give thanks to God for placing the right man in the right situation at the right time. Happy birthday, Mr. President, and thank you for your service to our country.