I’m back! Did you miss me? I have to say thank you to whoever responded to my last post by saying, “DUDE! Update your blog!” I'm glad at least one other person has visited this site. And since I listen to advise, here I am. Eight months later. Can that be right? Wow, I’m lazy! I’ve been struggling with wanting to keep up this blog. Few days go by where I don’t read something in the news, or watch a movie, or talk with someone and think to myself, I need to share this! News that I’ve missed: the passing away of Jerry Falwell and Ruth Graham, President Bush vetoing (again) stem-cell funding, Rev. Al Sharpton showing up on the news just about every day to say something I feel I need to refute, the release of “The Color of the Cross,” and “Jesus Camp,” Veggie Tales editing out religious content for NBC, myself reading two books by Dr. James Dobson and actually agreeing with what he says, and on and on. So I figured instead of trying to rehash all that, I’d start fresh with a mission statement of some sort. Background on why I’m writing what I’m writing. And so on. But then I actually visit my blog to start writing and I read my last entry and realize I already did that. Kinda. It’s incomplete in a lot of ways, but I think that will sort itself out as I post in the future. And don’t worry. I’m typing on a shiny new laptop that I plan to talk to Starbucks frequently to keep this puppy fresh and hip and all that. I might even be ambitious enough to put some videos from YouTube, because that’s what everyone else is doing and that makes it cool! But not today. Today I need to stay on point and chart a direction for the future of this thing called a “blog”. Web-log. I guess it’s better than calling it a “webl”.
I’ve been thinking about starting a blog since the last presidential election when I observed an unhealthy connection between faith and politics. Contrary to a lot of people’s opinions, I didn’t see it in the candidates themselves, but in the talking heads—the newscasters, the commentators, the freelance writers, the talk-show hosts, and on and on. I remember hearing everyone gasp at President Bush when he claimed he believed it was God’s will for him to be president. I have news for you. He won, therefore it was. If you don’t believe me, read Romans. That when asked if he ever went to his father for advice, he answered that there was a higher father he turned to. Wait, he can’t say that! He’s president! OMGICBHJDT! He was held up as everything wrong with religion and politics and the separation of church and state. Because of this, he was asked during one of the last presidential debates what role his faith plays in his life. He answered that he prays every day that he does the right thing, that he trusts that God will get him through hard times, and that he gets encouragement and strength knowing others pray for him. That holy roller! That Bible thumper! How dare he! Then the question was posed to Sen. Kerry. His response? That he believes the Bible spells out how he should live and how that should direct his politics. He then laid out the standard “social Gospel.” No one beat an eye. That’s when I knew something was wrong. What violates the infamous separation of Church and State more, praying every day and trusting God, or getting your politics from the Bible? Yet the line was already drawn. The sides were already chosen. And the public at large were force fed a doctrine inconsistent with both reality and the Bible. And ever since, every politician has tried to capture the “Christian” vote.
So here we, gearing up for ’08 while the talking heads are saying that neither Rudy Giuliani, Mitt Romney, nor John McCain can get the Republican nomination because the “Religious Right” will never back them. Wow, I didn’t realize I had that much power! These talking heads are falling all over themselves for Sen. Fred Thompson, reflected by him shooting up in the polls. So what am I to do? Obviously my mind must already be made up, since that’s who I’m being told is the only candidate that can appeal to me as a Christian. Nope. Not going to buy it. I’m not here to endorse, I’m here to inform. And not only that, but it’s too dog-gone early! So my goal between now and the elections for this blog, is to spell out how I think our convictions as Christians should relate to our politics. How our faith should be lived in the public square in the context of political debate. And maybe drop a book recommendation or two. I’m building up a reading list to prep for the final election. I’ll share that next time. I’m open to recommendations, although Amazon helps. Just type in one of the recent best sellers and I’m told that people who bought this also bought that, that I might also be interested in this, and what other people thought of that book. If I read all those recommendations, I won’t have time to sleep, much less go to work, take care of the family, or do anything fun. So I probably won’t get through everything, especially since I need to balance it with what I’m reading for my own spiritual growth. But hopefully, I won’t run out of things to post and I’ll actually keep up with this blog. Come back again. There should be something new to read.