Paramusical Ensemble

Paramusical Ensemble from cinema iloobia on Vimeo.

This video makes my heart sing. How would we even know what worlds are trapped inside the mind of a body that can no longer express its depths? Like the many, many conversations I have had with skeptics who say “show me proof of God’s existence”, what is proof to senses that cannot detect? Without the aid of the technology featured in this video, our senses could not detect musical ability, still intact and logical and reactive and capable of collaboration. And the technology would not have been conceived without belief that there was something to detect, something to learn. Were there people who tried in the past to find a way to connect to the mind of those whose bodies no longer expressed their thoughts? Of course. Did trial and error *prove* that there was nothing there and that it wasn’t possible? Of course not.

Gabe’s Tower – What Next?

In December of 2014, I wrote a proposal paper for a writing class about Gabe’s Tower. This month,  the owners have failed to meet a city deadline for refurbishment planning and the city has moved to condemn the property. Is there an opportunity, on the verge of being torn down?

Owensboro’s Gabe’s Tower: Use it or Lose it  

December 6, 2014

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Problem

Our family has moved around the Midwest several times in the last 15 years. Most recently, we moved from a small rural town in Kentucky to the city of Owensboro, KY in 2008. We bought a house in town, not far from a tall, steel and glass cylindrical building named Gabe’s tower. We didn’t know it had a name at first. We had given it a sinister name of our own when referring to it amongst ourselves. I was talking to a friend at work about it one day and she told me it had a name and that not too many years ago it was a hotel and then an apartment building, before it was closed and fell into disrepair. Most people who have lived in and around Owensboro remember when it was open for business. For those residents, it is a familiar, sentimental landmark and one that may be overlooked as the building continues to deteriorate. As newcomers to the neighborhood, we noticed it often as we drove, walked, rode the bus or pedaled a bicycle by the building.  My husband wondered why someone hadn’t torn it down already. Our oldest son wanted to buy it and turn it into a laser tag wonderland. Our other kids and I used it as a point of reference for directions, when telling friends and family how to get to our new house. Months stretched into a few years as the building continued to languish, unused and unattended. Once in a while a new board went up over a window or doorway. Weeds grew up through the concrete in the parking lot. Paint peeled and soffits fell. A few miles from this old “sentimental landmark”, the Owensboro riverfront was getting a complete makeover. Gabe’s Tower was now in the crosshairs.

Unattended property can become a problem very quickly in the middle of a city. My husband has a fear of rats because of a very large rat that showed up in the garage at his childhood home one day. The neighbors had demolished the backroom of their house that had been destroyed by a fire and the debris was left unattended for many months. So, vermin is one problem. Vandalism is another problem. Gabe’s Tower is considered an historical building and property owners naturally don’t want anyone breaking windows or tearing up interior rooms that are still in good repair. I saw an article online one day that contained photos of some of the tower’s interior rooms. There is one floor dedicated to a bar and lounge that still looks very nice, with polished natural wood walls and furnishings. The owners invested a lot of money into the purchase of the building and have had to answer to the city for their refurbishing plans. “Owners of historic property have a responsibility to conduct original research, a never-ending task, as clues continue to be found that add pieces to the puzzle of the past.” (Marian Page, 9)

The neighborhood immediately adjacent to the property will be the one most impacted by any plans for the building. The city at large could stand to benefit greatly if the plans are creative and profitable. “The fact that we still have to share places, whether we notice them or not, makes them more valuable and rare.  In an age of burgeoning electronic fantasies, places continue to be stubbornly irreducible and real…any place here, fenced or paved or public or private, cannot avoid being part of the land of the free; it has to try to live up to the name, however badly it might fail.” (Block, 158) It’s hard to tell between the city and the investors, but someone is failing here. The most recent inspection has yet to be released to the public or even the city. The owners are said to be “digesting” the findings. Without knowing those details, any proposal would be making assumptions about the building, but there have been very few details shared with the public in the last few years about why there is so much foot-dragging regarding the fate of the building. Is there a creative deficit or dollar deficit? I imagine it is a combination of both. There are a lot of factors to consider as the community watches and waits. Are there any viable ideas on the table at this time that would serve the whole community?

Proposal

There are many exciting, creative things that go on in this country as people attempt to reuse castaway material from an over-industrialized nation. Things can get even more exciting when those pursuing creative endeavors like these seek to help others and improve the communities in which they reside. In the spirit of those creators and innovators, I propose that the owners of Gabe’s Tower and the city of Owensboro consider something more than just reverting back to a hotel or apartment building. I got an idea one day after seeing a photo online of a cylindrical building in an Asian country with a giant sculpture of a serpent wrapped around the building. I thought instantly of the potential for an artistic solution to the building.

gabes-tower

I am suggesting that Gabe’s Tower be refurbished as a city museum with architectural salvage/eco-friendly/community project theme. When our family lived in St. Louis for a few years, we visited the then brand new St. Louis City Museum. The museum is housed in an old warehouse in a run-down area of the city. It was still pretty sparsely furnished with a floor or two still under construction. The museum was in the process of collecting architectural salvage from the city, pieces of Americana and ideas for eccentric exhibits. I loved the work-in-progress feel. This museum has grown and changed and is now a very popular tourist attraction. (“About”)

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This type of project would be excellent for the area of the city where Gabe’s Tower is located. It would be a benefit to the neighborhood similar to another example of this kind of project in a neighborhood that our family once visited in Nashville. Near a charter school with an arts emphasis, the residents of the diverse Nashville neighborhood have gone with the flow of the art theme. During a festival at the school, we had a chance to tour the streets nearby which featured brightly painted homes and yard sculpture.

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I remember a similar spirit that revitalized an area of Chicago when I was a child. My family and I attended street art shows and garden tours there every year. This kind of neighborhood solidarity around creative living and ownership of one’s environment is the essence of culture. It could be a unifying project. “Everyone must live somewhere. However, when a family owns its home, there is a conspicuous increase in overall self-esteem of its members and general family well-being.” (Phillips) 

Justification

As a creative person with many ideas, I personally see no drawbacks or problems with this proposal. However, the owner may have problems with this proposal. Seeing the profitability may be a challenge. There would need to be energetic research and a passion for the idea. A lot of money has already been put into the purchase and I’m sure investors want a sturdy idea for the property that would show a promising return. “The restoration of damaged or neglected detail is well within the capabilities of most home crafts persons; the basic ingredients are sensitivity, time and patience.” (Poore,8) Time is running out, however. Returning the building to a working hotel has been an idea I have heard more than once. Restoring the building to apartments to provide affordable housing in this area of town has been another idea that might be pursued in opposition to a museum. Also, the building may be beyond repair, or very costly to repair. I am not aware of its problems. Neighbors also may not welcome a lot of fuss in their neighborhood from a tourist attraction. However, I believe that with the direction that Owensboro has been heading with the revitalized riverfront, now is the perfect time to propose such a solution for Gabe’s Tower. The process would involve the community similar to the planning and building of the recently completed skate park, coincidentally not far from Gabe’s Tower. The whole region could be involved and interested in a project that would welcome their creativity. College art departments and local schools could get involved. Phoenix Commotion of Huntsville, TX has perfected the art of community in collaboration to building with apprenticed labor and salvaged materials. (Bates) Gabe’s Tower could make a great tourist attraction and field trip location. Funding could be sought through art grants, environmental grants or historical landmark funds. Investors, admission fees and other creative avenues could be pursued for a project like this one. (“NEA Awards”) I am excited about this proposal now and find the thought of turning the building back into a hotel very boring.

However, any creative plans for the building are always going to be subject to the reality of the condition of the property. On October 28th of this year, an environmental consultant company inspected the building for asbestos. It was the second inspection of its kind and encouraging to those wanting some movement toward a solution. The city is getting anxious. Owensboro Messenger-Inquirer newspaper reporter Stephen Vied writes “Gabe’s Tower is currently surrounded by a chain-link fence that was installed a year ago, when interior demolition began, only to be suspended after a few days. A recent check of the property shows grass and weeds growing tall inside the fenced-in area, with the exterior of the building looking increasingly tattered. Many missing windows have been boarded over, and many windows are open, exposing the interior to the elements.

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The unkempt appearance of the building prompted the city to assess a series of property maintenance code violations against it last year for a wide range of problems.” (Vied)

So, will code violations accelerate a decision on the fate of the building just to be making a decision? If so, a whimsically creative, unconventionally economical, eco-friendly idea may have a difficult time getting a hearing with investors who are pressed for time and good PR. An idea like mine may appear to lack seriousness. Premature promotion without having even a cursory understanding of the problems with the building and the interests of the city would probably be dismissed. “Building with salvage and alternative materials puts you on the fringe of standard strategy, and one cannot expect an inspector, or a city engineer, to immediately process everything you have thought out well in advance.” (Phillips) This idea would have be brought to and through several people. An email to the mayor isn’t going to be effective.

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Conclusion

In conclusion, the fate of Gabe’s Tower has been on the drawing board for a long time. Promises have been made but progress is slow. Rather than merely attempt to restore the structure, I am proposing a creative solution that bridges the old with the new and involves the whole community in the process.

Works Cited

“About.” City Museum: Saving the City by Any Means Necessary. St. Louis, Missouri. 4 July 2011. citymuseum.org. Web. 25 November 2014.  http://citymuseum.org/site/?p=89

Bates, Don R., et al. Resurrecting Trash: Dan Phillips and the Phoenix Commotion. Texas: Texas Review Press. 2013. Print.

Block, Ira. Saving America’s Treasures. Washington D.C.: National Geographic. 2001. Print

“NEA Awards Grants to 4 Kentucky Projects.” The Associated Press, AP Regional State Report. Kentucky. 20 July 2014. Regional Business News. 25 November 2014.

Page, Marian. Historic Houses Restored and Preserved.New York: Watson-Guptill Publications. 1976. Print

Phillips, Dan. “Information.” Huntsville, TX. 2010. Phoenixcommotion.com. Web. 6 December 2014. http://www.phoenixcommotion.com/

Poore, Patricia. The Old-House Journal. New York, NY: Dutton. 1992. Print

Vied, Steve. “Tower Tested for Asbestos.” Messenger-Inquirer. Owensboro, Kentucky. 6 November 2014. Database: Newspaper Source. 25 November 2014.

Blogtober and Halfway Through Another Semester of School

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I have been so happy and thankful to get back to school this fall, fresh off of August’s Global Leadership Summit and the excellent church services recently. I’m always excited to learn new Greek or Hebrew words and their meanings. Some Sundays, our pastor teaches both Greek AND Hebrew! 😀

Before this blog posts gets going, I would like to pray and thank God for his blessings.

“Dear Lord, Thank you for the many blessings you have given to us. Thank you for the days that we can be together, up early and ready to start a new school year. Father, we pray that you will teach us fresh, new ideas to make learning each day challenging and enjoyable. We love you.”

It’s a new school semester for me at college, and  another year into high school as a home school family, with our youngest son. He has added college classes this year, so technically he is a high school junior. Our older son was married last year and although he finished his 2-year degree and works in construction, he started back to college for Christian ministry this fall. Our oldest, and only daughter is a senior in college and will be getting married and graduating in the spring. Interestingly, my brother has also gone back to college. WooHoo for the internet.

Blogtober is here now and although I originally planned it as inspiration to encourage me to blog frequently once October ended, it has actually turned into an annual time to give my blog special attention. I’ve been haphazardly writing blog posts for over 10 years. It makes zero dollars and hasn’t made me famous. But it is here and I like to look at it myself. I have practiced a lot of writing here and tried to organize my thoughts on issues both in the news and in my life. I’ve also put a lot of bible study time in here. So, this is the official starting point for Blogtober, 2016.

Practice Makes Perfect…and Annoys Friends and Family

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Writing this blog is good practice for me. I aspire to write more. One of the purposes of going back to school has been to investigate areas of interest that have been neglected and to maybe zero in on things my husband and I would like to study more in-depth. In the process, I write about things that interest me. I write about current events and science and scripture. I write about education and efficiency and art and music. As a blogger, of course you want somebody to read what you write. So, you might share your blog with friends and family and even Facebook friends. This can be annoying. Other writers get it. Other bloggers understand. Facebook friends maybe not so much if you have your WordPress account linked to your Facebook Timeline. How would it go if I posted my piano practices? OR how about my opera singing practice? Can you imagine people not liking that? I can! It doesn’t always go over well when I am practicing Porgi Amor during Monday Night Football. Other musicians get it. If I merely hum within earshot of my older son, he heads for the piano. We’ll have an impromptu jam session going in no time. The neighbors mentioned hearing the music one time. They were cordial about it. So, my husband is very diligent about making sure we keep all music during normal business hours.

Practice of anything for me is at its highest quality when I am absorbed with hypnotic devotion. This is difficult to achieve. I remember when I was about 13-14, I learned the joys of running. I was training with my mom and brother for a 10k and went out each evening with them to run around a low-traffic circular turnaround in a nearby subdivision. After weeks of this I discovered that sweet-spot, the runners high, legs pumping effortlessly as the endorphins flowed and time seemed suspended indefinitely. I’ve experienced this in prayer, while singing, while reading, while drawing, while writing, while cooking and driving. The common thread in all of these is that I was completely alone in my pursuit, in complete harmony with God or complete harmony with those around me…uninterrupted.

How difficult is it to sustain an activity uninterrupted in this culture at large and the local one we create ourselves? When I was about 19, I went away to camp at a place with no modern conveniences. It had conveniences, but they were un-electrified. The conveniences were innovative, but they required preparation to access them. Everyone had to participate. Everyone shared the load. And it was a Christian camp where every morning we went off to our respective places alone for quiet time after breakfast and every day was spent playing games together and learning. Every night we shared worship together. Coming back to reality was a rude awakening. I was in camp mode and I remember someone being angry at me as soon as I arrived back home. This is the way it feels when I am practicing and I’m emoting in one way or another and I have to pipe down or speak up, or do the impossible, like process a question and give a intelligent answer. I’ve heard people call it ‘being in the zone’. I like that. Psychologist, Dr. Martin Seligman, calls it “flow”. He contrasts it with pleasure, where you are feeling what is around you. Whereas flow is being detached from the environment and being completely engrossed in what you are doing.

Currently, I need to stop blogging and get in the ‘zone’ of my psychology homework.

Was Jesus Married? Talking it Out

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“Why can Jesus have no other bride besides the church?”

L: “That’s an interesting question and one that would make for an interesting discussion. 🙂 I think if you look at scripture and God’s treatment of marriage and the relationship between the bride and groom, you can see God’s design beginning with Adam and Eve, of course, but look at the Proverbs 31 woman and the Song of Solomon for the relationship between a wife and her husband, or lover and beloved. The idea is one bride and one groom. God referred to Israel as His covenant people and spoke of their waywardness like that of an adulterous wife. So, God the Father as ‘husband’ to Israel is similar in imagery to Christ the bridegroom waiting to marry his bride, the church. What are your thoughts about how scripture addresses this issue?”

CS: “The comparison of Jesus’ relationships and marriage is a metaphor, not literal. Even the verses where Jesus is stating that it is not necessary to marry, so that you can devote your full attention to God states that this would merely be a choice and not a necessity. Loyalties can be divided by two wives, provided they are both the same (as two women.) So, a metaphorical marriage to the Church or God has no bearing what-so-ever on an earthly marriage.

If we were to take the metaphor literally, then why isn’t there only one actual nun at any one time, like there is only one pope? Are they not the Brides of Christ?

There is plenty of reason to believe that Jesus was married (from historical texts outside the Bible.) There is nothing stating one way or the other (in the Bible or anywhere else.)

The part about this that fascinates me the most is that people who claim to be devout Christians state flat out that if Jesus were married then he cannot be the son of God. When challenged on this point they refuse to explain why they would abandon their faith so easily.”

L: “I’m a little confused by your reply, possibly because I am not Catholic. I am not familiar with the scriptures where Jesus says it is not necessary to marry. However, I am familiar with the words of the apostle Paul about that and he did suggest that Christians remain as Paul was, unmarried, but that if they could not, they were free to marry. He also pointed out that those were his own words and not a commandment from God. The reference in scripture to Christ and His bride, absolutely does have bearing on an earthly marriage and is very, very plain in Ephesians 5:22-32. That is a long passage and simple to search online. Again, these words are by the apostle Paul, carefully laying out the relationship of a wife and husband as being precisely like that of Christ and the church. He says it is a mystery, so I can see why it would be challenging to understand. The reference that you make to nuns is not anything I am aware of in scripture. There is only one bride of Christ referenced in scripture and that is the Church. There is zero reason to believe that Jesus was married while on earth and there are no accepted scholarly historical texts that challenge his status as unmarried. It’s just not an issue. I’m also not sure what you mean about abandoning faith, rather than people simply stating that a married Jesus is not the Jesus of scripture. Therefore, THAT Jesus is not the Son of God, naturally. It’s like saying that Jesus stopped being a carpenter when he was in his early twenties and spent 8 years as a goldsmith, because some obscure piece of paper found in Egypt said so. It’s not remotely relevant or believable. It’s a waste of time. My faith in Christ alone is not shaken by that. I find it fascinating that people are so easily lured away from the Word of God to cling to any scrap of controversy. There’s enough to do following Christ without being blown around by every wind. Read the scriptures as they are written. Consider the context. Look for patterns and repetition. Allow scripture to interpret scripture. Consider the authors. Read it straight, like you would any other literature. Start with the gospels…the gospel of John would probably be good. Try to lay aside denominational traditions in your mind and look at the text square in the eye. For example, I recently started re-reading Matthew. I was fascinated by Matthew Ch. 8. and how reading it through all in one sitting makes the theme of faith and how concerned Jesus was with faith leap off the page. I read it again. There was much more there… in the verse that says he healed people, fulfilling Isaiah the prophets words “Himself took our infirmities and bare our diseases”, Jesus, creator, TOOK and BARE or carried our diseases. He took the little viruses and bacteria. He commanded them to come out of the sick and he carried them away. Amazing. So much to think about.”

CS: ” >>>Re: ‘And there is zero reason to believe that he was not married.

…I’m also not sure what you mean about abandoning faith, rather than people simply stating that a married Jesus is not the Jesus of scripture.’

Why? This is the simple question that you, and dozens beside you, refuse to answer.

If Jesus were never married, not a single line of scripture would need to be changed to reflect that. If Jesus were married, however…. the same. Not a single line of scripture would need to be changed because of it. It’s that simple.

All I am asking of you and your fellows is an explanation of why you would immediately abandon Jesus as your Lord and Savior if you found out he was married? You keep trying to say it’s a simple thing, but then you go off on long tangents that have nothing to do with that one question that you refuse to answer.”

L: “I said the exact opposite about faith and about abandoning the Lord. If a married Jesus is not the Jesus of scripture, my ‘fellows’ and I are not abandoning scripture and Christ, but rather dismissing the marriage claim. The question of Jesus being married is a ‘what if’ question about an earthly wife that doesn’t exist in scripture. Abandonment of faith in a ‘what if’ scenario is needless speculation, whereas dismissing the actual scriptures about the very real bride of Christ and the direct application to earthly marriage actually is an abandonment of faith in the Word of God…Jesus is the Word of God.”

 

CS: “And now you resort to flat out lying about what I’ve said. I’ve said repeatedly that we don’t know. That’s the simple fact of the matter. There is nothing in the Bible one way or the other. It’s irrelevant.

You, however, continue to claim that you have been granted special knowledge to know that which is unknowable. Let me know how that Pride serves you when you stand before the throne.”

 

L: “And what have *I* said all along? That we can know what ~scripture~  says about Christ. The reason you and I are not finding common ground here is our divergent approaches to scripture. Is scripture authoritative for you? From your statements here, you place it on equal footing with folklore. From a scholarly perspective, how do you come to this conclusion? It’s important to know where you stand on this important issue. I am a family historian. I search documents for dates and details. For example, I had always been told my mother’s grandfather died from an unusual disease no one else had in the family. As an adult, when I began researching family history, I obtained a copy of his death certificate. The cause of death was listed as TB. His mother also died of TB, as did several extended family members. At first, my mom was resistant to the new information. She had always been told otherwise. The other story she knew could have been true, but we don’t know now. We have a lot more evidence to the contrary. Primary sources are important to the study and documentation of history. The bible is no different. Take a look at the studies that have been done on scripture. Look at how much more we actually know about Jesus compared to other historical figures of his time. Now let’s consider folklore. I love folklore. I’ve spent the last 8 years getting to know storytellers and balladeers and understanding their craft. Consider historical figures and weigh the facts about them with folklore. How do we know the difference between historical fact and folklore? Let’s take a pop culture reference. Chuck Norris. He is alive and we can study his life and the facts about him. Legend has it that he was bit by a rattlesnake and the snake died. When he is asked how many push ups he can do, he says “all of them”. He is amused by his own folk-hero status…but we all know these are folk stories. They are fun. They speak to people’s affection for him. This is the same regarding folklore about Christ. Stories about Christ speak to people’s interest in him and affection for him. Who would be mad at people for loving him and speculating on things about it that *might* have been *could* have been or could be? However,  scripture as authoritative and scripture as the rod by which we measure all other stories about Christ and God’s design and plan for mankind, intentionally sets it apart from other material. It’s not a pride thing. It is a decision that you make as an individual. Is it authoritative? Do you trust it as the Word of God? Then have faith in Christ, who *is* the Word of God to preserve for you his word in your own language. Embrace it. Love it. Read it. Stand alone on the Word of God.”

CS: “And again you are back to claiming scripture says something that it doesn’t. No where in the Bible does it say one way or the other whether Jesus was married or not. This is the simple fact.”

L: “And we are back to square one…it says he is betrothed to the church, his bride and the wedding is soon.”

CS: “No, it doesn’t, but please keep claiming you are special among all, chosen by God to know things others don’t. That Pride will lead you to where you deserve.”

L: “Yep. It does. A quick Google search will find a lot of stuff on ‘bride of Christ’. Chapter/verse references include but are not limited to: Ephesians 5:22-29, 2 Corinthians 11:2, Revelation 19:7-9, 21:1-2..Jesus speaks of himself multiple times in the gospels as the bridegroom. Why would that be significant to the Jews? What was Jesus communicating by calling himself a bridegroom? Look at the book of Joel, chapter 2. This is a prophecy of the “day of the Lord”. Verse 16 talks about the bridegroom and the bride. Bridegroom appears 8 times in the old testament. Jesus is referred to in scripture as the last Adam. In 2 Corinthians 11, the bride and bridegroom are likened to Adam and Eve. God’s design is one bride and one bridegroom. The bride of Christ is made up of many…but the many are only one bride. Just one. There’s so much more that would fill so much more space and begin so much more discussion. All of God’s people are chosen by God to know things others don’t. The scriptures are available to all, but not all will read. The bible says the meaning is spiritually discerned. Not all will respond to the call. Not all will be compelled to read and study and know. Why? I don’t know. Jesus said his sheep hear His voice. In the book of Jeremiah, the voice of the bridegroom is mentioned 4 times. 4 being for seasons perhaps? I would have to study it, but the opportunity to study it is available to all. What is plain as day in scripture to me and full of treasure upon treasure is ignored or dismissed out of hand by some. This is as available to you as it is me. What good is being prideful about understanding what scripture says? I didn’t do anything but read it straight like anything else anyone else would read, but I didn’t understand it at first. Even when I didn’t understand a word of it, I wanted to know it and the first step was a blow to all pride and rebellion, repenting of my sin and believing on the Lord Jesus Christ.”

CS: “Yes. His relationship with his followers and the church is compared with marriage as a metaphor. It compares the relationship. It’s not an actual marriage to the church. That has no bearing what-so-ever on whether he was married in actuality.”

L: “Except that it does! Christ’s sacrificial role as bridegroom to the church, His bride, is the template, the real deal, and the model upon which earthly marriage of a man and woman is based…not the other way around. Jesus is the bridegroom of His bride, the church, as seen in the old testament, long before the incarnation. He was already betrothed long before his appearance in Matthew. When he tells to the Jews the parables of the bridegroom, he is revealing *himself* as bridegroom. It has enormous bearing on to whom he is married. What purpose would there be in Christ preparing the church in chaste purity as his one and only, where the church is to be wholly committed to Christ alone, only to have his affections divided by an earthly wife and children? It is nonsensical and not remotely in keeping with God’s character and what we know ~in scripture~ of God’s marriage plan.”

CS: “Your belief that is what is says doesn’t make it absolute. It’s obvious you are clinging to this like a life preserver, and we’re back to my original question. Why? It’s obvious you will never get to an answer, so I bid you good day.”

L: “Bye, bye, CS…Scripture answers your original question. The scripture references I have provided answer your question and there is so much more. All of scripture is about Jesus. All of it. If you cannot see it reading it yourself, remember that Jesus is alive. Ask him directly. Tell him you are not seeing it. Tell Him you have questions and you don’t understand. “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy paths.” – Proverbs 3:5″

CS: “No, it doesn’t, but as I’ve already said, you will never admit that you aren’t perfect in your understanding of the Bible.”

 

What is Life?

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“Some conservative Christians believe life begins at the moment of conception.”

-~Daniel Wallis, Yahoo News, October 2014~

The above quote from the article Arizona School Board Votes to Remove Pages From a Biology Textbook, about biology textbook treatments of contraception, relegates ‘Christian’ statements about when life begins, to philosophy rather than science. If a microscopic fertilized egg was found on another planet, the science community would be falling all over itself to declare they found life on other planets, but the exact moment of human life on earth has been up for intense debate between the Christian and science communities for at least 40 years. Scientifically, why is there disagreement about human life beginning at conception? Why would it not begin there? Is it even a scientific question at all? Or is it merely philosophical? Viability is the battleground now, but that brings to mind the thought that perhaps human life is not a question of life but rather a question of value. When is human life valuable and when is it not? Does this put it more in the realm of economists and policymakers? That depends on the ultimate definition of ‘value’ and  to whom we are accountable.

“…Does evolutionary biology, or do the natural sciences taken together, provide an exhaustive account of the changing world of complex organisms? It may well be that the natural sciences only concern themselves with those features of reality subject to empirical observation. Yet to conclude that there is nothing more that needs to be explained, nothing more that needs to enter into a full picture of the world, is to make a philosophical claim, not a claim itself based on empirical observation…”

Christians know God as creator and submit to his Lordship. Human life is viewed as having eternal value, because The Lord our God is a personal God and has created human life and says it has eternal value. Science is an impersonal philosophy through which the viewer observes the world.

 

“Biological continuity, the key to evolution, does not tell us whether or not an exclusively materialistic explanation of human nature is true…

The traditional pillars of religion that support a view of God as transcendent Creator remain unshaken by the discoveries of modern science…”

-~William Carroll, Oxford University Professor~

No, Not One!

~Rembrandt~ Face of Jesus

~Rembrandt~
Face of Jesus

There’s not a friend like the lowly Jesus,

No, not one! No, not one!

None else could heal all our soul’s diseases,

No, not one! No, not one!

 

Jesus knows all about our struggles,

He will guide till the day is done;

There’s not a friend like the lowly Jesus,

No, not one! No, not one!

 

No friend like Him is so high and holy,

No, not one! No, not one!

And yet no friend is so meek and lowly,

No, not one! No, not one!

 

There’s not an hour that He is not near us,

No, not one! No, not one!

No night so dark but His love can cheer us,

No, not one! No, not one!

 

Did ever saint find this Friend forsake him?

No, not one! No, not one!

Or sinner find that He would not take him?

No, not one! No, not one!

 

Was ever a gift like the Savior given?

No, not one! No, not one!

Will He refuse us a home in Heaven?

No, not one! No, not one!