Archive for December, 2005

A Christmas Prayer

Saturday, December 24th, 2005

holy child of bethlehem, whose parents found no room at the inn; we pray for those who are homeless.

holy child of bethlehem, born in a stable; we pray for all who are living in poverty.

holy child of bethlehem, rejected stranger; we pray for all who are lost, alone, all who cry for loved ones.

holy child of bethlehem, whom herod sought to kill; we pray for all who live in danger, all who are persecuted.

holy child of bethlehem, a refugee in egypt; we pray for all who are far from their home.

holy child of bethlehem, in you the eternal was pleased to dwell, help us we pray, to see the divine image in people everywhere.

david blanchflower; bread of tomorrow.

To emerge or not to emerge?

Saturday, December 24th, 2005

This is funny.

Chaotic Season

Saturday, December 24th, 2005

It’s 2 a.m. at the Alexander house. Anna has been sick all week and hopefully today was the worst of it. She has had a really bad cold that has produced a faucet for a nose, two really swollen puffy eyes, and a terrible cough. She’s a mess right now. i pray that she turns a corner overnight. I would hate for her to miss out on Christmas because of how bad she feels. We’ll see what the morning brings.

Usually this time of year is relaxing for me, but this year is a bit different. If you don’t want to listen to me whine about everything I have on my plate right now, stop reading. I am preaching at our 9:30 service on Christmas day (no big deal), and all four service the following Sunday (a bigger deal). I am working on all my Board of Ordained Ministry paperwork which is due at the end of January as well as planning my worship class that I am teaching at Perkins School of Youth Ministry. I am also speaking at our Jurisdictional Camper Leaders meeting which is at Glen Lake this year the third week of January. As I have stated in earlier posts, I know you don’t care to know all the stuff I have going on (I’m sure your plate is just as full), but I feel better putting it on paper.

I’ve been fairly stressed about getting all this stuff done, but right now, I just want my little girl to feel better.

Saving Christmas?

Wednesday, December 21st, 2005

Have you ever noticed how the church can sometimes act like the 8 year old kid who wants to take his ball and go home because everyone else won’t play by his rules? I am so sick of the ridiculous argument that is flooding the media and the watercooler talk about the secularization of Christmas. Has someone been in a coma? Are we just now realizing this? Is changing the wording in an advertisement really the last straw for the church? Now we’re fighting back… over Happy Holidays! This is what it sounds like to me.

“Christmas is my holiday. If you don’t celebrate it the right way, you can’t celebrate it at all.”

Sounds pretty similar to the 8 year old to me.

Wake up people. This isn’t a new development. Christmas has for quite some time now been more about our need for more stuff than Jesus. This didn’t happen overnight… and it didn’t happen because people began saying “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas.” It happened because we (not just them) have bought into the lie that more stuff will make us more happy. We are all a part of the secularization of Christmas. And like most things, I believe that the way we change things isn’t by screaming on CNN or trying to legislate change. We become the change we hope to see. If you’re really upset about “Happy Holidays” go right now and return all the presents you bought this year. Return your Christmas tree. Sell all your decorations. Take your whole family down to the homeless shelter and give away all the money. Serve some food. Talk to people in our world who are hurting. If after all that you feel the need to rant about the secularization of Christmas, then I think you might have something to say.

Cool Links 1.4

Monday, December 19th, 2005

Library Thing – Check out Library Thing to create an online catalog of your own library complete with tags.

My Library – Here’s the start of mine.

Relevancy? – Bolger blogs about the the mirage of relevancy.

Lectio Divina

The Jesus Prayer

Washington 35, Dallas 7

Sunday, December 18th, 2005


Maybe this is just another example of hindsight being 20/20. but didn’t you feel like eventually the Cowboys were going to have a day like today. Over the past 4-5 games, there were many times where you felt like things could really start to get out of hand, but somehow the ‘Boys seemed to avoid total disaster… but the possibility has been there. It just seems to me with a “Bill Parcells” type team that plays to win tight, low-scoring ball games that those type of teams don’t seem to have the appropriate “swagger” or confidence. I almost want to say that I believe at this point that the Cowboys feel about themselves they way we feel about them. They are a team that can grind it out, and if a few breaks (not a ton) go their way, they can win the ball game… but at the same time, disaster could strike at any moment.

It’s for pride now ‘Boys.

Two other “optimistic” observations:

Optimistic Thought #1: I still believe the Cowboys are a player or two on the offensive line away from being a really great team. Unfortunately, we’ve been heading the wrong direction in that category all year.

Optimistic Thought #2: The pendulum has swung. Anyone who says the AFC outside of the Colts is better than the NFC is just crazy. The NFC has reclaimed the title of the best conference (all around) in the league, and the East just might be the toughest division.

Cool Links 1.3

Saturday, December 17th, 2005

Links for “Lost” geeks.

The Lost Blog: For those who tend to forget what happened when and where, this chronicle of the show might help.

Lost Spoilers: For those who can’t wait for what’s coming next.

Ultimate Theory“: At least that’s how it’s described on this forum page. Read this interesting take on the meaning of the show. It will make your brain hurt.

I don’t think I am a total geek until I get one of these.

Cue the sad music…

Wednesday, December 14th, 2005

Today was supposed to be a day of celebration. I took my last final of the semester this morning at 8:00 a.m. But today I grieve the loss of my Apple Powerbook that has crashed. It is being sent in for repairs (whatever that might be) and I will be without it for at least a few weeks. Maybe I will get a new computer out of the deal. I don’t know. It comes as a major setback to the Apple revolution that has happened within the Alexander family over the past 6 months. For now, we pray for patience as our technological needs are accessed and healing is sought by all.

As with most crashes, I am currently unsure if I am going to lose all my data. That totally sucks, but the good news is that some of the things I need are on my blog so they are safe in cyberspace. I guess in the future I will be putting more stuff here at the Bucket to ensure that it is preserved.

Sermon illustration

Monday, December 12th, 2005

Anna has a new favorite activity. She likes to get in her bed, throw out all of her stuffed animals, put them in her shopping cart, push them around the house, and then set them up for a picnic inside her tent. It’s really a comical activity. She must have 15-20 regulars at these picnics which is why I was so surprised this morning, after getting everyone set up she said, “where’s Piglet?” The Piglet that she has is a really small stuffed animal… probably only about 4 inches tall… but for some reason, when my daughter looked around at all the stuffed animals gathered in her tent, she knew someone was missing. We began the search for Piglet, but unfortunately we couldn’t find him. I think we left Piglet in Mama’s car last night. Anna was upset that we couldn’t find Piglet… My mom had just shown up to watch Anna for the day and I was trying to get to the office… I really didn’t think it was that big a deal… but Anna thought otherwise. She couldn’t have her party without Piglet.

I don’t quite get it, but…

Sunday, December 11th, 2005

Doug Pagitt believes that this type of technology is something to be watching and hurt my brain talking about at the Emergent convention.

Here is a wired news article on nanotechnology.