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Saturday, May 17, 2008

A Few Sober Thoughts

Colorado is home to Coors, the beer that boasts that it uses cold, clear Rocky Mountain water. Call me old-fashioned if you like, but I recommend drinking the pristine water and abstaining from the beer. In spite of the blitz of media denunciation of cigarette smoking, drinking alcoholic beverages causes much more damage than smoking. Prom night may be the last night for some teens who drive drunk. Alcohol abuse can lead to unemployment, homelessness, divorce, and crime. I don’t condone smoking, but I wonder why no one in the media or government has launched a crusade against alcohol similar to the crusade against smoking.

Recently, a local news crew trailed and filmed our local district attorney throughout a workday. He was caught drinking and drinking and drinking and driving. More recently, our governor’s son hosted a keg party in the governor’s mansion. He and his guests are legal-age drinkers, and they did not destroy any property, but the incident seemed inappropriate.

Christians do not share a unanimous opinion about the issue of drinking alcoholic beverages, but we should agree about two related matters. (1) The body is the temple of the Holy Spirit and should be dedicated to God for His glory (Rom. 12:1; 1 Cor. 6: 19, 20). Each of us must decide whether drinking alcoholic beverages defiles the temple. The same determination applies to overeating and/or eating unhealthful food. (2) We should be controlled by the Spirit and not be controlled by alcohol (Eph. 5:18). Alcohol cannot control the person who abstains.

Social drinking among Christians has become more acceptable in recent years, but is the practice honoring to the Lord? While you are weighing in on the issue, I think I will take a break and grab a cold one—a glass of the best water west of the Mississippi.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Not Patient Yet!

I will never write a book title Patience and How I attained it. I get exasperated on a golf course waiting for a slow foursome to get out of my range. I shuffle nervously in a checkout lane. I sigh repeatedly waiting for a traffic light to turn from red to green. I find it difficult to wait for people to fill the pews in the church I am serving as interim pastor.

My wife is much more patient. She loves crossword puzzles and takes whatever time she needs to complete each one. She completed an intricate jigsaw puzzle a while ago. The picture was that of a princess kissing a frog. The puzzle was far from user friendly, because the pieces were tiny and the color scheme was complex. But she patiently persevered. If the task of assembling that puzzle had been mine, the princess and the frog would never have met.

Fortunately for us, God is patient (2 Peter 3:9). He waited patiently for us to trust in His Son, and now He works patiently in our lives to lead us to spiritual maturity. In many ways, you and I resemble Peter, the disciple who often engaged his mouth in high gear while his mind was in neutral. He often spoke too soon, acted prematurely, and presumed to tell the Lord what He should do and not do. However, the Lord patiently molded Peter into a spiritually mature leader. So there is hope for us.

I don’t plan to purchase a crossword-puzzle book or a 10,000-piece jigsaw puzzle, but I am going to try to be more patient.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Interactive TV. Inactive Hip

I received an invitation last Friday to teach a writing class on a cruise ship for a week next year. The cruise begins at Miami and includes ports of call in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. I declined the invitation. Sometimes a good opportunity is not the right opportunity.

Our Mother’s Day family get-together Saturday included generous portions of cake, ice cream, and WiiTM bowling. I must confess I overindulged in every category. I gained weight from eating too much food, and gained a sore left hip from too much virtual bowling. It takes a while to get moving normally after rising from a chair. If a golf buddy suggests a game of golf this week, I may have to pass. For now I am on the injured reserved list.

Fortunately, my affliction isn’t serious enough to demand a visit to my doctor. I wouldn’t want to admit I injured myself on television. Patience is what I need most. A few days will surely bring relief.

Aging isn’t for sissies, is it? It is a normal part of life. However, in our pains as well as our gains, we Christians know the Lord is present with us. And someday we will be with the Lord and free from pain forever.

I wonder if we will play WiiTM games in heaven.