The Presence of God Was the Furthest Thing…


Andy Stanley nails it!  Fast forward to 12:00 into this tape — or enjoy his message from the beginning.  I’ll wait.


When you doubt that God exists, or you want God NOT to exist, you’re on the wrong road.  Remember: Your heavenly Father loves you.  I don’t get all the nuances of my faith, but the big stuff I get.  Andy Stanley reminds us that God is present.

A few years ago I was unemployed, and facing a very hard financial situation.  Unemployment was denied, and bills were still coming in.  And it was my fault.  Mine alone.  I can blame some things on others – and I didn’t “deserve” to be unemployed, but it was my fault.

Three kids.  Mortgage.  Late 40’s.  I had to trust that God would answer my prayers some way.  Not my way, but some way.

I got a job offer, and went for the background and psych testing for the job.  It was a stressful type of job.  Later, they rescinded the offer.  By this time, I had stopped looking for work.  So I was really stuck.

Long story short (too late) and I started to call and write to find out how the job offer was rescinded.  It turned out that someone checked No instead of Yes on a form.  The question on the form was “Is there any reason why Dave shouldn’t be hired for this job?”  Answer: No.  It took a lot to get an administrator to fix this situation.  I got hired.  Also I got an apology. 

In reality, I know God challenged me,  It was a really small challenge compared to John the Baptizer or Job, Lazarus’s family or even you reading this.  But just as Andy Stanley tells it, God is not absent.  He’s not absent in your life, and if He’s been pushed to the side of your mind, He still is not absent,  Even if He is the furthest thing from your mind.   



Heinlein Was Right

When any government, or any church for that matter, undertakes to say to its subjects, “This you may not read, this you must not see, this you are forbidden to know,” the end result is tyranny and oppression, no matter how holy the motives. Mighty little force is needed to control a man whose mind has been hoodwinked; contrariwise, no amount of force can control a free man, a man whose mind is free. No, not the rack, not fission bombs, not anything — you can’t conquer a free man; the most you can do is kill him – Robert  A. Heinlein

Bloggers Get Sued

Occasionally I comment on this blog:

Mr. Hoge has a nice outlook on life, and a pretty fair dislike for a couple of nasty internet vermin. He’s being sued for his troubles. If you like drama, this end of the internet has plenty. If you enjoy seeing the good guys fight the very good fight, start with Hogewash, and read about his fight for free internet speech.

You Might be a Redneck Christian if…

Somehow this got started in my brain.  With apologies to Jeff Foxworthy…

You might be a Redneck Christian…

If someone asks you about your faith and you say “I think Bobbie LeBonte’s gonna win Rockingham this year…”

If you have ever sung Amazing Grace to the tune of the Gilligan’s Island Theme or House of the Rising Sun.*

If your prison tattoo is John 3:16.

If you have ever worshipped in a double-wide sanctuary…

Borrowed from Squirrel's Views Blogspot Blog

If this is your Senior Youth Group Travel Bus.

If you have ever killed and eaten something on a women’s retreat…

If you can only attend Bible study every other week because of the restraining order…

If you’ve ever made change in the collection plate.  If you’ve ever needed help making change in the collection plate.

If you have ever taken the youth group shooting…

If every Christmas, when you hear about the three wise men traveling thousands of miles on three camels – it reminds you to stop off at the Quicky Mart for some smokes (you instinctively reach for the pack rolled up in your t-shirt sleeve.)

If the only bible verse you know by heart is printed on the back of the package of pork rinds.

When the choir sings “Oh Come Oh Come Emmanuel, it reminds you to order a new five speed tranny for the truck.

If you have no opinion about salvation by grace – but you tell people  “Don’t get me started on restrictor plates…’

If your Christian video collection contains The Ten Commandments, The Last Supper and Roadhouse starring Patrick Swayze and Sam Elliott.

You might be a Redneck Christian.

Somebody in the house thinks I’m making fun of people.  If I am, and you’re offended and you comment here, I will be happy to make an additional donation to my church this Sunday in your name.  Please understand though, two or three of these things actually apply to me.  – Dave 


The Chenille Sisters  sang Amazing Grace to the Gilligan’s Isle Theme in Oswego, NY at Harborfest a million years ago.  They were amazing, and very sweet. You can reverse it, but singing the Gilligan Theme to the tune of Amazing Grace is too slow to be funny.  I sang Silent Night w/ukulele at church, then used the same chords and notes for Amazing Grace.  It fits pretty well.

One night I figured out that I could sing “Old Time Rock and Roll” by Bob Segar to the tune of “The Lady is a Tramp.”  In the future, doctors will solve the mystery as to why I would even go there.


Update: Amazing Grace can also be sung to the tunes of Margaritaville and Old Time Rock and Roll.

Things Stuck to the Bottom of My Brain:

  • I have decided to swim from Corolla to Ocracoke on the Outer Banks of North Carolina to raise awareness about how dangerous it is to swim in the ocean.
  • You know sometimes I just say, ‘Sure, the hell with it.  Close all the tabs.”
  • If the world operated like computers, ever time you closed a door you’d have to save the room behind you.
  • Dunkin Donuts managed to deliberately misspell both words in their name.
  • People don’t actually dunk doughnuts.
  • A moment ago, I misspelled misspell.
  • The company that makes “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter” should merge with “Helluva Good Cheese” to produce a product called “No Freakin’ Way this is Mayo.”
  • When I was a child, all of the pictures of me were taken “just to finish up the roll of film.”
  • If you run through the aisles yelling, “My Yuengling, my yuengling, won’t you play with my yuengling…” they won’t let you buy any more.
  • Who knew Harris Teeter has security?
  • Channing Tatum has the all-time girl name of all time.
  • Some women don’t need to put on makeup for exactly the same reason you don’t sprinkle salt on bacon.
  • I used to volunteer at a shelter for battered fish sticks.
  • Lizard Lick Towing is real, but NBC News is fake.  Huh.
  • Amish Tech Support is not very helpful.  They never pick up the phone.
  • When they do pick up, they immediately ask “are you sure the computer is unplugged?”

Stupid and Evil: More Dumb TV

OK, Good Point, It’s all Pretty Much Dumb

I just found a very smart blog about the UFO phenomenon. reports on the TV show ‘Chasing UFOs” on the National Geographic Channel.  The show has the most ridiculous teaser video in the history of overblown reality TV.

She really may be a talented and skeptical researcher in the field of UFOs. Some of the most expert investigators look good in a tank top.

There was a time when the History Channel had history, the channel that became Tru TV actually had shows with true things, and the name National Geographic stood for something.   Hey, I’m writing here.  Are you even reading this?  Jeesh!

Freedom of the Press When the Press is a Computer

Convicted Speedway bomber Brett Kimberlin

Update: Patterico has written a Reader’s Digest version of this story. 

It seems that blogging has grown up the the point where people are starting to notice — and that’s not always the best thing.  This new medium is being attacked by those whose names appear online.  Sometimes there might be a reason to limit a bloggers writing — defamation, harassment, falsehoods or incitements to violence.

On the other hand, I’ve writing about blogger Aaron Walker and his struggles with convicted Speedway bomber Brett Kimberlin.  In short, Walker wrote truthfully about Kimberlin’s past, encouraged others to do the same, and when Kimberlin took legal action Worthing wrote about that. Worthing was one of the group of people who were SWATTed, that is they were visited by police who thought a murder had been committed.  The main connection between SWATTing victims was criticism of convicted Speedway bomber Brett Kimberlin or his associates.  I’m not pointing fingers, just noting the amazing coincidences involved here.  Go to for nearly daily updates.  (I can never figure out that linking thing.  Sometimes I have it; sometimes I don’t.)

It’s not hard for me to see the heroes and villains in that story.  In some cases, it might be a tougher call.  Still, the First Amendment allows truthful writing which does not encourage violence.  Lawyers are free to correct me on the nuances of First Amendment law but I’ve been a reporter long enough to know that if you write the truth, and your subject is a public figure, you’re on solid ground.

Kimberlin has Worthing arrested, and the blogger was ordered to stop writing about Kimberlin.  Eventually a competent judge overturned the order.  Now Popehat reports about another case involving a woman who was charged in a hit and run:

Just as in the Walker case, a judge is restraining the blogger from writing about the subject of his previous stories; the judge also ordered previous writing pulled down from the blog.  So, don’t write about this person, and burn your old articles.

Note to Judges: Read the First Amendment and the Supreme Court’s decision involving the Pentagon Papers.  Bloggers might have the reputation of being pajama wearing amateurs, but they still retain the rights of all citizens.