super fly blog

Friday, June 13, 2008


That's it folks, I'm switching to wordpress. Adios to this blog. I'll give it a couple weeks before I delete this blog. You can find me at Russell Purvis's Weblog. Been nice, but time for something better.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Memorial Day thoughts

I was just sitting here today, and I started thinking of Memorial day. Now some of you have already read my post on where I primarily hold my citizenship, not just as a spiritual reality, but as a physical reality as well (as if there can really be a distinction made). I do want to touch on war and soldiers a little. It is a very touchy subject when you look across the entire board of Christianity.

I do want to say that I am not a big fan of war. War in the end does bring death. Some will retort with, "But we have to defend ourselves" or "The Bible doesn't condemn war." To the first, I am more understanding, but for the later, I think it's a bit more complicated. I do see how a country will have to defend itself, although defining defense is very important. If someone flies planes into thousands of people in a couple buildings and threatens to do more harm to you, it might be time to consider certain measures. As for the later, I think looking at God's words through Jesus and the prophets will prove that killing was not liked. And if it could be avoided, it should. Jesus endlessly scolded the zealots for taking a military agenda against those who were in leadership over them (the Romans). He said, in a nutshell, that the Kingdom was more than the land you own, the family ties you have, or the religious identity that was tied to the first two. He even says that the peace-makers will be blessed. I do think that he loved them though, and that he said it as a Lord who wanted the best for his ambassadors. He also loved the Romans they were against. He even praised a Roman military officer. All that is to say, even if Jesus was against unnecessary violence, he love the fighters. And when you love both sides of a fight, your views of violence change exponentially.

As far as soldiers are concerned, I love those guys as I love everyone else. It is not right, nor is it logical, to show hate and to scorn the soldier because he has shot someone, for in hating and spitting on a soldier, you in turn promote the core of violence, which is hate itself. Maybe Jesus was a bit insightful on this issue when he said to love your enemies. When a soldier comes home, don't ask how he can kill innocent people; instead, ask him what you can do for him. Be light to him. Show him that you love him despite his current situation. And for the soldiers, love on the people who mock you. It is surprising what happens when the person who hates you for shooting a gun is hugged by the very one he hates. He may strike back, but at least this war thing is in a different perspective.

To everyone, go ahead and honor the dead soldiers. I will not say if they are right or wrong, but I will say that you are to love.

You are to show hope.

So why not be hope...


In the same way that Christ showed grace and peace to His enemies (you, me, and the rest of humanity), show grace and peace to others, even your enemies, especially when your "violence" is unnecessary, and you can achieve good through other means.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Respect The Guy

Here it is. The long awaited bashing of women. I am kidding, but I do want to complete this thing on relationships. I hit on the problem with guys and there lack of respecting women with a completely selfish view that does not look at them as a separate entity, but as an extension of themselves that is used to please themselves, which is not love, but lust. But the girls, from this guys perspective, need to get a crash course into a guys mind.

Guys minds are usually quite simple, with exceptions here and there. We are one track minds. When we watch TV, or eat dinner, or even drive, careful how much attention you demand from us. Some guys can manage this with extreme concetration, and others, like me, need their minds on that one thing in order to do it well (my driving record all the way up to my freshmen year in college proves this). When it comes to attention to you, it's best to make the setting as simple as possible.

We have a hard time thinking outside of the box sometimes, unless we are thoughtful about thinking outside the box. So it's no small wonder that we might look at the TV and say, "Dang, that girl is hot" over and over again. Not that it is right, it is in fact wrong in that it is detrimental to the woman, but it does put us in perspective. We have triggered attractions that just draw us to appreciate, or drool, over pretty women. But instead of building a wall between you two, why not try challenging us. That just shows that you want us to love you, which definitely shows a large amount of respect.

In some ways this is a little more complicated. He is very demanding of respect. Now, it may be that respect is the lusted after object does not resist him, or it may be that the other individual makes him feel loved and respects him with words of encouragement and affirmation. You could kind of look at it this way, men in the end not only want respect, but freedom from fear, just like you, but it is somewhat different. They want to be accepted by their lovers, and that is what respect is for us. I know we should be moving away from this fear, but it is there. We want the woman that we desire to desire us. And if that doesn't happen, or if the man isn't taught the right way to express that desire, he turns to plan B, which is to quit chasing someone who is an individual in proper, good, tough, and Godly relationship and to start chasing the TV and porn models who do not say no, which really is chasing the self and its desires and saying that you don't care about the community of romance that God desires for us.

Now I hit on something here that the ladies should be noticing. They want that respect, or better yet, that affirmation. Maybe the guy you are with has not been hearing you affirm your attraction or respect to him. If you are and he is still acting the part of the jerk, then it is time to reevaluate that relationship and consider breaking his heart for his own good. But if he is a good man, then affirm him. Make sure you do your part. Like I implied to the guys, the failures of the men do not justify your wrong doings.

I do not have a great verse for the women. The books of the Bible are not from a time of gender equality, although it moves that way, and there are some surprising examples of women in leadership, so I'll just say what I think happened in the event of Adam and Eve relating to each other. I think that they were focused on each other. Eve must have accepted the invitation to be one with Adam after he tried to declare her as a very intimate part of him, yet something different. I imagine she might have affirmed him with a resounding, "oh yeah, baby."

Being a guy with a girlfriend, I love it when I am called hot, and I love it when I am listened to. I love talking about what Kelly needs or wants to do. And when I here the no to anything I say, when I find myself in disagreement, I find that in retrospect those times where just as beautiful as the times when we were on the same page and saying yes to each other. If you find a good man, he'll feel similar things, if not the same things.

Here are some pointers. We actually get discouraged just like you when we hear about how hot some guys is. I understand it is different for women than men, but like I said, we are not thinking outside the box. We hear that and we think that in order for us to be desired, we must get the squared shoulders and the six-pack and be able to leap tall buildings in a single bound. So if we are going to help each other, we need to look at each others needs instead of our wants or unthoughtful comments.

Realize that guys have tall yet fragile egos. I'm not talking about prideful egos that think they are God's gift to the earth. I am talking about us being on a high rope. And we are easily knocked down.

So let's work together. Don't be like a certain women who will look at guys and when they are scolded, say that they are free and they have every right. That is not Godly freedom. If you are playing the feminist card and saying that you have every right to talk about men as chauvanists, just remember that feminism was about erasing chauvanism, not about the women becoming chauvanist too. You have responsibility to guys just like the guys have responsibility to you. So try to see this as romantic community, between two people who love each other and struggle together. Whether you call it affirmation, respect, or even submission, lift up your husband, fiances, or boyfriends. You might have to forego some fun comments, but trust me, it is worth it, and you'll see the men begin to be able to see you for the individual you are.

Love is not a feeling.

Read 1 Corinthians 13, the passage describing love. Notice what love is. It's not a feeling, but action, and sacrificial action at that. And love will continue when Christ returns. All the things like prophesy, speaking in tongues, feeling sexy, lusting, and what have you will end.


Just like the guys should sacrifice blessing themselves here and there, so should you.

So give and accept love.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Love the Girl

I was just thinking about some things lately. I was thinking about my woderful woman, who, by the way, is quite smashing and makes me want to be romantic. I'm usually not an uber-excitable guy. I tend to keep quiet half the time. I usually like to make sure what I say is worth saying. But Kelly makes me like a kid that does not worry about what should be said and is excited to even say hey. She is wonderful, and I hope that I am being just as wonderful to her. I want to be everything she dreams a man to be. I know a lot of guys that don't care about that. I just wish every woman could have a guy that would give up anything and everything for her.

I have heard guys who have girlfriends oogle and drool over woman that are on tv or jogging on the sidewalk. I have to say to you guys, eventually it comes out and the girl sees you for who you really are. These are the same guys that get married and wonder why they are living a wrecked marriage. So what if I watch some skinny 19 year old run down the beach on MTV. I'm not bangin her. I'm just watching. Guys, that doesn't help.

Here is what a girl hears. "I know I'm supposed to be with you and love you. But this girl looks better than you. You have become second best to me, and I just don't want to share this with you. I want to please myself instead of letting you please me" (Girls, you can expand a little in the comments if you want to). Yes, she hears that. And although the gals can have their share of faults, that doesn't license us to intentionally fail.

Genesis paints the picture a little better. When Adam first looks at Eve,




It doesn't go into how hot she looks. It only shows that he sees his mate, and says, "she is bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh." The word bone here is also understood as substance or self. The word flesh is a connotation of blood relation of sorts. And although his naming her in such a way may be done in some sort of way, he is actually naming her his equal. She is not lesser than him so that he can treat her less than him, nor is she better than him, and, as I think Paul is hinting at, to be over him in authority (I say that because Paul was a well educated Jew and would have been taught such the position on this was a mix of social commentary saying where we are and where we should be).

So how are you treating your woman?

Are you worried about her feeling loved and being brought up to equality with you?

Or are you worried about yourself getting what will make you feel satisfied, in control, powerful, manipulative, etc.?

I think we need to be aiming ourselves at loving others more than ourselves, even our women, especially our women. Stop being caught up in the ways of the empire that say you should be caught up in filling yourself with the breads of ill-gotten gains. Worry about giving your earnings and your rights and your agendas to God and others. Don't give in to the rebellion that says fight for you rights to party and be your own man. Give in to service and love.

Promote peace, promote grace, promote God's love to others, even the ladies (can I hear it for the girl power in the hizzouse.)

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Sunday, April 27, 2008

Protect the Sabbath

I started thinking about some things in recent days. I hit a snag in my thoughts about how to treat people on sunday while in church. Some find it hard to recognize people on stage when trying to worship God. I can't make up my mind on the standing ovations. Sure, I am there to worship God, that is primary, but am I not part of a community of worship? And if so, am I not to show gratitude when someone blesses. I really thought about it today. We went to see Jim Caviesel, the guy who played Jesus in the Passion movie. I started thinking about how some people were looking at the situation. I decided to not stand and applaud him, but what was I doing in my approaching this worship service. I was very excited in seeing him as a hero of our faith (yes, he's a christian). I even was excited about sitting closer to the front (I was only four rows from the front). Was I not giving him the same praise? Take note that I usually sit in the back seating of the sanctuary. I found myself after the service quite a contradiction. Maybe I have in this turned away from being gracious and loving, even if a little stupid. I am starting to wonder if I would rather be humbly and lovingly stupid, rather than being the prick who thinks that he has to defend the Sabbath based on his knowledge on Scripture.

Don't get me wrong, there are aspects of worship that should be protected. But I don't think that this is it anymore. I mean, why focus on this when half our praise and worship songs are not even directed towards God. That honestly seems more important (if you have noticed, this usually effects which songs I lift my hands and close my eyes and which songs I simply sing with normal attitude). I think it is out of place and very innapropriate. Sometimes inconsistent, just like the people who say they are adamant against certain things in a service, but later you see them doing those very things (coffee drinking for example).

My point is that I'm done with my agenda. I'm gonna try to focus on God's agenda. Don't lose sight of God being holy, because he is holy, but remember that you are in a community of God, and God looks at these very people with grace and even, dare I say, praise. Just read some of the bible and you will see that God in some way praises certain people. Some sense of honor, thanks, or lifting up is given to them.

And let's also think of how much of this "applause" we give to the people of the bible. Are they more important than us? Are you not giving them that same status, if not more, as God? According to the no applause logic, we might be doing just that.

I can't help but think of the Pharisees who wanted so bad to lift up their nation and be holy and blessed by God, but in seeking blessing, they cursed others. We should not do this. Let's love on others instead of being people who seek to just exclusive. Set yourself apart, but don't push people away. Be different, but stop being distant. I think I might be guilty of this, so I think I'm going to be more gracious. Like I hinted at earlier, you practically applaud Abraham, David, Peter, and Paul, so do the same to the man who is next to you or near you. That is scriptural.

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Tuesday, April 15, 2008

What Are We?

I watched Lions For Lambs last night. Not the award winning type, but it is intriguing as a point maker. It made me think about the country I live in and how "Rome is burning" as Robert Redford's character in the movie put it. It seems as if we might have been easily decieved by the media's quest for sensational and America's quest for the status quo. We do not care about what is important, instead we want things that chill us or light us up. We are arrogant, stupid, and apathetic.

This is our country. You turn on the news during the day, and it is not about how we have failing cities, a surprising amount of poor or unemployed folks, or even about how the war is really going. It is about mortgage, pop stars, and scandals. The real important stuff is usually scrolling on the bottom of the screen on CNN or Fox News. Every once in awhile we hit a good story. But the next day, its back to the status quo. We do not dialogue about the issues, we usually want to ignore them, and even when we do try to dialogue, we usually rant and rave. We are more concerned with things looking alright than answering, or at least living in, the problem. Immigration is a great example. This is a complex issue, but we usually only see one side of the coin. Why? Because inconveniences us. "They took our jobs!!!" as South Park would say it. So what do we plan to do. We want to build a wall. But what we don't realize is that that is not answering the problem. It only sends it away so that we cannot see it. To really understand this, go study the economy and lifestyle of the country of Mexico.

TV is not going to answer our problems. Do you really think that watching TV is inspiring? I beg to differ. When we think we've been inspired, we are not. We are only made to think, or dare I say wish, that we were good, bad ass, manly, kind, or loving. And instead of actually being what makes us feel good and exploring the potential, we let the movie be something while we waste away to nothing. This is exactly what the world would want, or better yet, what the American Empire would want. If you think I've gone too far in calling America an Empire, there is a reason why I have done so.

The funny thing about empires is this: they conquer, establish their military presence, and then put in the person the deem fitting into the power system they have place over the area. This vaguely familiar to Iraq and Afghanistan. Yet we still look at the other forms of governemnt as the evil. I'm not going to call America evil, but them doing this empirical act does seem at the very least rash, if not arrogant. We fight these wars for control, since aggressive violence is merely a way of establishing your control over something or someone. And as far as establishing military presence, why do you think some of the countries don't like us. And to further their dislike, we would spend an entire blog session on how many countries we've established our own government and our favorite rulers in.

I have a proposition. A form of the separation of Church and state that might be new for some people. The separation would be the means to an end. Let's cut the umbilical chord as Christian. Jesus prayed for the Kingdom of Heaven to come down to earth, so let's be citizens of Heaven. Sure, you are in this country, and I'm not saying riot or revolution, that is not what Jesus taught. But our separation is to make us a discernable entity. Once we become something different, we will be able to hear God's voice telling us to feed the poor, and end the need for food stamps. Adopt the orphan, and end the need for abortion. Practice hospitality, and end homelessness. Practice grace and peace, and end violence and selfishness. What I am saying is that when we look at our loyalty as not to the American Flag, but to the Flag of God, we will serve this nation and point out its faults. We will be able to be heaven here in America and hopefully attract the country to do the same.

So stop being apathetic, and just pay attention for a change.

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Thursday, April 10, 2008

More Thoughts on the Back Porch

I was just reading N. T. Wright's The Challenge of Jesus, and I hit an interesting spot on the Kingdom of Heaven that Jesus promoted. Yes, the infamous Kingdom of Heaven, which has been greatly misinterpreted in the history of the Church.

The scenario in Jesus setting is that they are once again under foreign rule, and more than that, pagan rule, which was not viewed as a return from exile despite the return to their country. It is very intriguing that Wright notes that in the first century Jewish world there were three options as they waited for the messiah.

1. Separate yourself and wait for God to do something (Essenes)

2. Compromise with the authorities and hope that God will validate somehow (Herod)

3. Take up arms and fight the holy war that God will win through you(Pharisees and Zealots)

It is even more intriguing that Wright goes on to say that Jesus was none of these. This does not make any sense in even todays world. All three of these settings seem to make sense. Jesus actually combated these views through parables such as the seeds sown on on different ground and the prodigal son. If you want to see more about that read the chapter "The Challenge of the Kingdom". I'm not going to spell it out here because it would take too long. What Jesus is saying is yes to the end of the exile, but no to the way it was supposed to come according to the Jews of the day.

I find this kind of proposition seems crazy today when thinking of how we think today. These guys were following there own agenda, there own plan on how God was going to win it all. Jesus, however stepped up and said, "Dude, you got it all wrong. I'm coming back, but I'm the one doing a good work in you, so give up your plan, and trust me." Wright mentioned the term repent and believe. It might not be specifically used by Jesus to mean, stop your evil and find religion, but it might actually be meant for religious people to turn from their own understanding and lean on God's (sounds vaguely fimilar from the Old Testament).

Maybe you are rebelling against those who wrong you or those who you dislike for some reason. Maybe you are going to step aside and actually support what is bad in hopes that God will vindicate your so called "peacefullness." Maybe you just want to be separated from all contact and let God work it out.

In my own mind, I agree with Wright, because the pieces fit. And the three patterns go against the incarnation. If you take on #1 you have no chance of being incarnation, period. If you take on #2, you deny that the incarnation seeks to change the world through redemptive, ressurection living. If you go with #3, you deny that God wants to save all the world and includes all people(s) in His great and mighty plan.

These are just my thoughts after reading this chapter. I do hope we learn this perspective of repent and believe. I do hope we learn that we might be following our own wills instead of God's.