Wednesday, December 28, 2005

The Virgin Birth

What is the miracle of the virgin birth? According to the laws of science, it certainly is not physically possible. Indeed, it is contrary to any logic one could subscribe to, for when one considers the absence of life leading to it's presence, with only a non-human intervention, it becomes necessary to believe that there IS another world, another existence, one much more powerful than ours, and who's path is not restricted from our own. They can intertwine. And they have. What really took place? Did the Holy Spirit place a living embryo in her womb? Was matter really created, brought forth into existence at that moment? If so, we nullify the idea of having all matter begin at creation, and Solomon's view that there is "nothing new under the sun" cannot be held consistently. The two times that Jesus fed the many crowds of people with only a small amount of food must have been the same way. Atoms, particles, electrons and neutrons, all in conjunction with each other, were brought into being at that moment. The two world's paths crossed, and denied all the conventional idealism that might have existed. God, from nothing, made something. And there is nothing more powerful than that.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

New features

For all you techies out there, I just wanted to make you aware of the RSS feeds and email subscription stuff that I don't know much about, I just put in on there cuz it looks cool, and it works, and it was free. And it makes it easy for you to read my blog without having to actually visit the site.

All the links and information are on the left near the bottom of the links section. The icons are mostly links and will help you get started on RSS and so forth, if you haven't already.

Also, as a side note, I'd like to annouce the birth of my nephew, Taras (ta-ROSS) Jamison Miller. Cute little guy.

Monday, December 12, 2005

New York City, lacking color.

Though you may detest it (I doubt), I'm going to post photos of NYC, all or most of which are black and white. I hope you enjoy.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Conversation on the by-log

There's a particularly interesting conversation going on at the By-log. A debate about Catholics and Homosexuality is raging in the comments. I think it's extremely interesting. Content Warning: Visit the above link only if you're not embarrassed by casual talk about the scientific basis for human reproduction!

Sunday, December 04, 2005

America's Youth and their Clothing Suppliers

OK, folks, how 'bout a little stream-of-conscience post to enlighten the teens.

Last Saturday I was dragged kicking and screaming in a car with two girls, to the Westfield mall in Canton, "Beldon Village", for you old-timers. Truth be told, I wasn't kicking and screaming, it was sort of an interesting idea. Me—the bodyguard. Wouldjabelieveit?

At any rate, I found that I could hardly bring myself to enter even the most innocent of stores. American Eagle, Hollister, and the like. Because of what I've heard, not seen, I never went into Abercrombie & Fitch. Hollister was bad enough.

All in all, having visited these stores, and few others, I found it awefully hard to keep from becoming intellectually cynical. In fact, I found it impossible.

Hollister is an amazing store. Complete brand identity in only one word: Hollister. It means nothing to me, but to the rest of the teen world, it means everything. So, really, as a marketer myself, I can really respect that. The way they've done up their store is incredible. A real surf shop! But the whole thing was too authentic! It was so poorly laid out, I found that leaving the store required becoming intimately acquainted with a few strangers, the very people I was trying to get away from! And the music created an indescribably oppressive atmosphere, along with the closing-in walls, that made being in that shop nearly claustrophobic. It was insane.

American Eagle. I had to laugh. It was a polar opposite to Hollister. Brand Identity in 2 words, now, instead of 1. (jk) But the store was really boring. I'm trying to figure out if it would be good for business or not. Hollister creates an identity, American Eagle sells. I don't know. It seems to me, in hindsight, that I really don't have a clue what kind of clothes I saw at Hollister, I was too busy analyzing the atmosphere. My graces, it was awful. But American Eagle was less memorable than it's clothes were. I still have flash-backs of khaki jeans, torn, nearly from limb to limb, all in the name of individuality! Ha! It's hilarious just to think about. Individuality, for those of you who think it can be supplied in the clothes you wear, can not be supplied in the clothes that you wear! It certainly can be helped along, but if you're shopping at AE, Abercrombie or Hollister, chances are, you're not!

When describing my opinions to a friend, I thought of an endless plain of fabric (most likely torn fabric) from which all these people were cut. Thousands of youth from all over the world, trying to fuel their individuality by purchasing from the same stores! I have to kinda laugh at the ignorance of it.

Of course, in the end, it's not a battle of which clothes you want to wear that makes me so cynical of the aforementioned stores. As in Hollister, from a marketer's perspective, I think they did well. And AE, making their clothes more memorable than their store, good job. But I can't get past the kind of moral force that they are in our states. Of course, the people that habitually shop there are already exposed to all the sin you can imagine, but:

"As for me and my house, we will shop at Kohl's!"

Monday, November 21, 2005

How Far is Heaven?

Many of you may have heard Salvador sing the song, possibly even on a secular station. My guess is, most of you liked it. But this post has nothing to do with the song nor the length of time 'till heaven is my (our, fellow Christians) home, but rather what we will see when we get there.

Meditate a moment on the infiniteness of God. What would it mean to be infinite? Interestingly, the concept of infinite is impossible to grasp, because of the boundaries of finiteness. I'm only beginning to see that "infinite" is not possible to even picture, because of our finite mind. The basis for finiteness is essentially infinite constrained. And it's constrained absolutely. There are no boundaries outside of finiteness; after finiteness is only infinite. Only. The boundaries to infinite are not constrained; indeed, they don't exist.

In Heaven, will we be infinite? Will finiteness end at death? Or is time the only constraint that will be invalidated. Regardless, what we will experience will be beyond finite language's ability to communicate. This is not so hard to believe. Philippians 4:7 says

"And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding..."
If it passes all understanding, without a doubt it passes the boundaries of human communication. Even with our amazing capacity to convey emotions, etc. we are not able to intimate the essence of the peace of God! This insight will help you understand John's (the Revelator) lack of ability to write, in finite language, even the most incomplete of descriptions! Think of a city, or an entity of some sorts, that surpasses the boundaries of what constrains our wildest imaginations! Infinite! A mansion, a city, all without the constraints of finiteness; all which are absolutely outside of our minds to imagine! That's my home! and yours, if you choose.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Well, there's nothing like a good ol' hangout time with a few of your internet pals. This past weekend, on Saturday, the first "MennoDiscuss party took place at Pizza Parlor, with Hans Mast, his father Marvin, and his brother Benji (Sorry Marvin and Benji, but Hans is the most famous of the three of you, so I needed to use him as the reference point). The whole Marvin Mast family was in the area for a wedding, so we had a great time on Saturday nite. I missed curfew by over 45 min, for the first time that I'm aware of. Hans attended our Sunday morning service at Gospel Haven, and ended up inspiring his whole family to come.

For the record, we talked about anything and everything. Hans insisted on taking a picture of me, wearing a tie that I had worn for a special youth social, and is planning on posting it in the "To Tie or Not To Tie" thread on MennoDiscuss. I might end up regretting the day I made the purchase. It did look sorta cool, though. I felt, for the first few minutes, that I had two tounges, one in my mouth and one sprout directly of my adam's apple.

I'm really only posting this for sake of making it look like my brain is functioning, and I'm really fumbling with what to post next. If this is how bad it is for me now, on the internet, I don't want to get a job at a newspaper and have to write every day. I'll be back before too long, and when I am, I think I can promise something meaty.

Thanks for your patience!

Thursday, November 10, 2005

John 1

I'm in the process of reviewing (if you can call it that) John 1, and scriptures related to it in order to derive a fuller meaning out of it. As a Gospel, it is the only one that isn't synoptic, and it's thrust is in an entirely different direction. As a friend of mine put it to another friend: "I read John 5 times, and I knew God." The other friend replied with "Now read the other Gospels 5 times, and you'll know Jesus."

I'm not entirely sure what to make of

"And to the angel of the church in Laodicea write: 'The words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of God's creation."
in Revalations 3:14, but think about it once: Obviously, the "Amen, the faithful and true witness" is Jesus. But the beginning of the creation of God? That strikes an unfamiliar chord in my mind. Jesus was created? But wasn't he always part of the Trinity? Doesn't that mean that he would always have existed? So why does Revalations say that He was created by God?

This little post was really only meant to serve as a mental stimulator. Now, I'm very curious about one thing. Why has no one EVER signed my guest book? If you are reading these words, you must be at least somewhat interested in what I have to say, and therefore, I would be more than somewhat interested in knowing who you are. You don't need to say much, but leave me a note. Humor me!

Friday, November 04, 2005

Love... Dependent on evil?

This post is in response to a plea for comments on the latest post by Pat Miller, of "Stand Up. Be A Pillar." First of all, I think Pat did a good job at conveying his message. He's a great writer. Second, what I have to say will be deemed by some as "splitting hairs", but to me, the essence of it is fairly important. (Also, lets keep something VERY clear. Pat is one of the best friends I've ever had, and has by far the coolest job title: International Travel Agent [Yes, Hans, for your papa]) Another questions I'd like to throw out there is this: Did God create anything after creation? Was ANYTHING, person, place, thing, or idea, created after God created the universe for the very first time? If we can so "No" definitively, then it will help us in solving this issue. Alas, I'm not prepared to do so.

If you really care about helping us resolve this, please read his blog first. If not, just read mine and tell everyone about how Pat and I disagree...

Pat, for sake of understanding eachother, without talking past each other (I have an awful tendency), let me ask you this: Did God create Evil? If yes, how do we tell people about a loving God... who created Evil? Please read my blog on this subject to be enlightened as to my opinion

"Evil is why we are free moral agents, right?"
If you have read my entry on God creating Evil, then you may see my point of view already, and that is this: No, not exactly. Evil isn't why we're free moral agents. Evil is the product of us being free moral agents. You see, if we were not free, we would never have separated from God, and thus we would not have evil. For that is what evil is, the lack of Go[o]d. So, evil is our fault, not God's. It sounds preposterous, but I don't believe it to be.

"Our love for God would not be as strong if we had to love him."
Exactly right. Dead on. But go deeper, and think about this: God created us this way, and he created us this way so that we would commune and fellowship with him. Had he created us any other way, our communion would not have been enough to be worth the "trouble," as he already communes fully and purely with... Himself! That is why we have the trinity! We don't really have a clue as to what would exist, rather, how it would exist if it were any other way. As true as the phrase is in off-the-cuff logic, it's really an invalid point, as God created us with such a purpose, and without the purpose of us loving him, we would be ultimately invalid and absurd.

The Bible does say husbands, love your wives. So to not love them is evil. Against the Bible. So, again, we can safely say, that yes love is dependent on evil."
No. Love is dependent on the way we were made "free moral agents." Evil, as I have said before is the product of such. And, in this case, love is not made dependent on evil, rather it is superior to it in sense, really, the Love being "Good" and Evil being the vacuum of it. Make sense?

What it boils down to is that "evil" is not even really a solid concept. It is a vacuum, created by no one, no thing, and doesn't even really exist! "Evil", as such, does not exist! I'll paraphrase what I have said in an earlier post: Darkness is the absence of light, black is the absence of color, death is the absence life; similarly Evil is the absence of Good. This forces evil to only exist as a concept, particularly so because all of the other examples are non-spiritual, physical properties, making them visible to us humans. The question "Did God create Evil" is therefore really an invalid question, because evil is uncreateable.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Skin Deep

As time goes on, my experience deepens, my opposition becomes more and more diverse, and the jazz resolves itself less and less, my views on certain things become more and more... wide.

Probably I shouldn't use the word wide, rather maybe, different. From many other people, that is. I keep running into situations where people don't understand me because I use everyday terms to go "deeper", but the everday terms do not suffice, or I'm not able to communicate their depth with the context I'm using them in.

Just tonight I was talking to someone, and I was in a situation where I couldn't talk like I wanted to, I didn't know how to talk, rather, how to communicate with the person, because I want to communicate more than our contemporary language allows us. I feel the depths of what I'm trying to say, but I'm not able to convey that with the atmosphere and context of our conversation. I believe it's because of the contemporary lifestyle. I'm tired of it.

What of grandeur is so... grand? What of majesty is so majestic? What of the classical is so endearing? Or is it only me? I can't help but be bugged by our skimming-the-surface attitudes, over-emphasizing things that block or view of the underlying problems. Basically, screaming our heads off at people who scream their heads off, and things like that. Here's a good example. The most-visited part of is the Theology part. Around twice as many posts as any other subject! I was impressed. Until I looked into it. Indeed, there are a few interesting posts, I daresay, quite a few, but looking at "Is it OK for men to wear shorts?" or "To Tie or Not to Tie?" or "Why the suitcoat?" or, (my personal favorite) "Mennos, Make-up, and Manicures...", I smile.

Now, obviously, we all understand that none of us can picture the perfect church body, or, more specifically, the perfect individual, but how we critique our own culture's essentially non-consequential behavioral habits, standards for "modesty", is just amazing.

In reality, it's only skin deep.

Sunday, October 23, 2005


I had an enlightening thing happen to me this weekend; picture this:

Three teenage boys, 16, 18, and 19, in a cabin somewhere off the map, warming themselves in front of a fire, drinking hot chocolate, eating creamsticks, enjoying eachother's company and... reading philosophy.

It actually took place. This past weekend, Chris, Micheal, and I spent Fri. evening and Sat. morning together at a small cabin in the middle of nowhere (and when I say nowhere, it's 4 miles east of New Bedford, that sprawling metropolis built around the 600-643 intersection). When morning came, the fire was out, and the boys were cold. So I got some starter shavings, some dry logs and a match, and warmed that little cabin right up.

While we were all sitting around warming up, it was my bright idea to begin reading from Fracis Schaeffer's book, He is There and He is Not Silent. The boys were agreed, so I began; ended up reading the whole chapter, in fact, and I'll probably never be quite the same.

All that to introduce tonight's subject (if indeed it is night when you're reading this, if not... never mind):

The Holy Trinity.

First of all, why does the Trinity exist? What is the need fulfilled by the Trinity? Let's go back a little, to the days of Aerostotle, Socrates (not "SO-crates" as in a movie I recently wasted my time on), and all those guys. The Greek philosophers had this troubling thing; actually, we see it in most Eastern religions who had any brains. The trouble was this:

You know how the Greeks had so many gods? The reason they did this was because the had to have gods in order to be over everything that exists, or as Schaeffer put it, "to be a sufficient reference point for all the particulars." Their dillemma was that they kept thinking of stuff they didn't have a god for, so they'd make another, and another, and another.... We actually see an bit of this in the bible, on Mars Hill, where there was the alter to the unknown god. They always knew they were missing something, so they just made a god they didn't know about to account for their missing stuff.

We know who that God is, but what makes Him a sufficent reference point for all existence and for all our morals? What is special about God that makes Him able to be such a huge thing? Two things: No. 1, He's infinite, No. 2, He's not alone.

No. 1
Of course God is infinite. Just that fact makes him almost sufficient to be our reference point, our validation.

No. 2
He's not alone, for he is Three! He, alone, communes as Three; Three Who loved and communed with eachother before time, before the world began. The reason for this is: if He were alone, He would need the universe as much as the universe needs him! He would have needed the love and adoration of all things as much as they needed His sustaining hand! And if that were the case, He wouldn't be completely sufficient! He would be dependant upon us, humble humans to validate Him! There is no way that my God is not sufficient to live without the earth. It is peaceful to know that my God is completely self-sufficient.

So Jesus intercedes for us, communing with His Father, and the Holy Spirit moves, the catalyst of Christian motion.

Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, Amen.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

The clearing

I rode toward the edge of the forest at a gallop, the almost-chilled wind throwing my horse's mane into a beautiful flow. I entered the woods at a small opening, where the trees where less dense, and there were clearings every few hundred feet. I was late. Late, not for some event, not for someone, but for the sun. Every spring, when the sun was only so high, it entered one of these clearings, one I had memorized the path to, and glowed off the spring mist that was lifting from the wet forest floor. The leaves in the trees created rays that made the small clearing feel like... heaven. And it was there I was headed, for I was meeting the maker of... heaven.

I galloped on, dodging the trees as they became thicker and thicker, until finally, I arrived. It was just as it always was, just as it needed to be. I jumped off the armoured, battle ready stallion, with a rattle, my own armour making the descent difficult. I left my horse in the darkness of the dense leaves, and made my way to the center of the clearing where I removed my helmet. My long hair, wet with sweat from the ride, dropped almost to my shoulders, and I fell to my knees to begin.

When I did, there was nothing else. No other one. Only I, and my Maker. My thoughts never realised, became words, but neither did they stay in my head. My heart was full. And this was how I spoke.

Silently, I said "Father," then paused my speach to think of the weight of it. Father?

"Worthy, precious, Holy, Being of Love and Grace, here I am."

He approaches me, silent, invisible, but certainly existent. The presence was incredible.

And I begin, the thoughts finally realise, materialise, and I feel them, for I am... Warriorpoet.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Did God Create...?

Evil? Did He? Raise your hand if you said yes. No, I'm serious, raise your hand.

Did God create evil? Francis Schaeffer noted that, if God had created evil, He Himself would have to be intrinsically evil himself. Both intrinsically good and intrinsically evil. Do you believe God to be partly evil by His very nature?

In a recent discussion I had with a coworker, Jacob Brown, (partial credit to him for the thoughts that inspired this post) about the debate I had that I posted on this site, we were talking about something that I had said, "Evil is the opposite of Good". I was trying to make a point, but I see now, that I think I may have been wrong. Rather, I should have said, "Evil is the absence of Good".

Similarly, Darkness is the absence of Light, Cold is the absence of Heat (look it up, naysayers), Black is the absence of Color. Makes sense, right? But there's more. When you look at the Biblical account of Creation, where man sinned and was separated from God, we see that man had the potential for evil, right? Not really.

You see, Evil is still only the absence of Good, and Good is only God, therefore Evil is the absence of God. Thus: God didn't create Evil, he created man with the potential for being separated from Him. Angels, too, apparently, as with Lucifer.

Think about it for a while, it may change the way you view certain things.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Battle Bible

This morning, I made a visit to the local Bookstore, in response to a sign that said "Storewide Sale"! I went in, and of course, bought something. A Bible. The aluminum, snap-shut cover sported an embossed medical cross wherein are engraved the letters "ESV". English Standard Version. The interpretation of the Holy Bible in the version English Standard. The cover said this: "Herein are contained the very Words of God."


The Words of God? Words?? Language? The communication of an Almighty Diety? In my... coat pocket?

The language of such an Existence, humbling itself to be contained within my hands?! Within my pocket? With the amount of kings in the world that would never allow their subjects to see them without a myriad of red tape, I have a GOD who was gracious enough to allow me to put His Words within the confines of my coat pocket, to view them, memorize them, meditate on them, inhale them, on a whim; no red tape, no introduction, just a pure heart, and a prayer.

That's my God for you. Amazing.

The Lord's Prayer from Luke, in the English Standard Version

Father, hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come.
Give us each day our daily bread,
and forgive us our sins,
as we ourselves forgive everyone
who is indebted to us.
And lead us not into temptation.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

More Photos of the Big Apple

No. 1 They don't make them like they used to....

No. 2 Standing in the need of prayer.

No. 3 I've always had a fatal attraction to Asian girls....

No. 4 See above.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

The Big Apple

I had the privilege to be in NYC this past weekend, and captured around 360 pictures on my digital Rebel. Here are three of my favorites.

Luke 19:41 And when he was come near, he beheld the city, and wept over it.

I was fortunate to be ready for the 3 or 4 seconds that the sun was hidden behind the statue.

Mat 14:28, 29 And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water. And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus

Believe me, it's more than just a bit disconcerting to read those names. The list goes on. And on. And on.

For those of you who like (or didn't like) the spray paint crimes, I took this one for you!

Monday, September 26, 2005

Lemme try that again.

Hans gave me hash for not linkifying the, uhh... link. Then he kindly showed me how, so here's my hand at it:

Thursday, September 22, 2005

New Forum

Hans Mast was kind enough to relay an email to me introducing a new forum for mennonites,, where mennonites can gather and discuss...anything. I became a member immediately. Hope to see you there!

Friday, September 16, 2005

Paradoxical Exposition

Seeking love, knowing the Lover, and thereby having found the former, yet continuing the search with passion. It's one of the great paradoxes of life.

Who am I? Why am I that? What point is there in my being such?
I'm an expression. Of peace. Of hope, and, primarily, of the Love[r], the ultimate Artist.

What hope have I to turn the world? Whereupon do I step into the world of certain blur? Of living death. Where is death? Beacon, oh Light! please beam hells death into existence! But of course, this is hope against hope. Wish against Truth. No.

The bells toll. Run! RUN! At the door, finds nothing restful, all is moving, spinning round, and Love and Thunder fight. Fury rages, old maids wishing all was calm and still as Nativity. But were it such, the calamity would yeild no end.

Never a thought that rushed through my subconcience semi-reality hit me like it did that day. "Love beat Thunder when blood and water flowed." Oh Love! whatever lives within me, That great paradox proclaim! For such is always, never ending, overflowing world without end.

Yours Truly

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Recent debate

Here's a copy/pasted version of a recent debate I had on my xanga site. wallaceapprentice is me, mkcuiaba is him. Enjoy.

Hey Nick! Long time no hear...of course, that would be my fault. I just decided to intrude into your nice Mennonite rythm of thinking and throw in something to shake it up. (again)

I think the evidence for some of the propositions scientists have made and you are questioning can be found in a book called "Creation and Time" by Dr. Hugh Ross. It supports some of the evolutionists claims with a longer time for creation than many evangelicals would lead you to beleive. However, interestingly enough, this man is a christian.

The point is, yeah, secular scientists are simply trying to prove that God doesn't exist. However, it may be possible that some of their findings are quite true. How do you know? Even with my bias, christian opinion, I can't tell you what I believe about creation other than God had something to do with it. You can't necessarily prove evolutionists wrong, but they can't prove you wrong either.

Posted 9/8/2005 at 9:11 PM by mkcuiaba

Nice, Micah. An MK not sure whether or not there was death and struggle before Adam...

At that point, you've just nullified the basis for the entire Bible.
Posted 9/10/2005 at 12:33 AM by wallaceapprentice

Oh? Did I now?

I'd like to look at it as though I'm taking in a broader view (as an mk) and realizing that there is truth in every culture, not just our own, and that can make those things that seem so important become less important and less obvious, and those that weren't as important, become in fact the most important things. Save`[portugese, I think -ed.]?

Posted 9/11/2005 at 3:32 PM by mkcuiaba

That's utter gibberish! What's more important than believing that God's Word is infallible?!?!

First of all, there *isn't* truth in every culture, as not every culture has obtained TRUE truth through the word of God. Furthermore, Christianity is not associated with any particular culture, and therefore you have no right to make any kind parallel between TRUE truth and CULTURAL truth. Francis Schaeffer wrote in his book "He is there and He is not silent" that there is a moral dillemma as soon as you remove God from a culture (and indeed, these cultures from which you are deriving truth from are most apparently Godless). That dillemma is this: Truth becomes relative to culture. Since truth is Good and the opposite is Evil, and without a god you cannot have definitive measurements for either, without God, truth becomes entirely irrelevant because it HAS NO BASIS. It also varies between culture. What's true here isn't there, and so forth.

Finally, however noble you percieve yourself as being in having taken on this *broader view*, in the end, it comes down to only one Thing. TRUTH. TRUE truth.
Posted 9/12/2005 at 4:05 PM by wallaceapprentice

Wait just a minute! Nothing I said was against what the bible says. (though you might think otherwise) My point is, the bible doesn't say fact-to-fact this is how the earth was made and how long it took. That's not how the first few chapters of the bible were written and therefore you can't read it like that.

Secondly, true, without God no culture can be good and considered to be true. However everywhere you go in this world there is evidence of God, even in people. So, though a culture doesn't believe in God and therefore cannot be good, you can still find a little trail of truth in that culture. For instance, through values. (I've seen it myself)

Posted 9/12/2005 at 11:22 PM by mkcuiaba

Listen Micah. I have only one simple point to make. As soon as you've accepted an old age for the earth, you've accepted death and struggle before Adam. There are many other peices of evidence that I could use, but I choose that one. I'll repeat myself from before: As soon as you've accepted death and struggle before Adam, you've just nullified the basis for the entire Bible. BTW What evidence do you have that the first few chapter weren't written literally, as in Six Day Creation etc. Am I supposed to believe that the first few chapters were written figuratively, and the rest is literal?! What in the world draws the line between them? What else am I not supposed to believe?

What good is the *little trail of truth* in a culture when we Christians have the only *Trail of Truth* worth looking for? And the reason that other cultures do have traces of truth, as much as other religions, is because THEY ALL CAME FROM THE SAME PLACE. They are all shades of original truth! We have the purest thing! It's entirely pointless to waste your time trying to find Ultimate Truth as an assimalation of truths from other cultures and religions. We have the ULTIMATE TRUTH.
Posted 9/13/2005 at 7:01 AM by wallaceapprentice

I have one thought. If we say that the 6 day creation is figurative, how do we defend any of the Bible from naysayers?
Posted 9/14/2005 at 12:06 AM by icedteafanatic

Ok, look guys. Obviously you've never herad this before. The original hebrew text of the first several chapters of genesis was written as poetry. The first several chapters is all poetry, not a story filled with facts. As any poetry you can't simply take it word for word to be true, but instead you have look to see what it means. (by the way, I'm not making this up. The people who found the original text in hebrew studied it and saw this themselves)

Secondly, CALM DOWN NICK! I'm not trying to tell you that you should look for truth soley from other religions and cultures. All I'm saying is that because they have truth, you can learn something from other cultures. The whole point of my post in first place was to tell you to keep an open mind about things other than what you grew up with. What good are going to do if you keep judging everyone who believes differently than you? That doesn't help anyone, but if you can realze that there are some similarities and then work up from there you'll do much better.

Posted 9/14/2005 at 11:39 AM by mkcuiaba

Judging from the *blue Kool Aid* you appear to have been drinking, both politically and spiritually, your level of compromise is unprecedented! How can you continue to sidestep what I'm saying? And why, for crying out loud, are you so stuck on an old age for the earth? It is absolutely clear to me that you, just as the *people who found the original text in hebrew*, have been put seriously under the influence of liberal academia of the worst kind, and your bias is showing. There are major problems with your philosophy. There are obviously large amounts of people who have NOT subscribed to the belief that the original text was poetry, probably because the people that said it was, started with a premise (evolution), and set out on an exploration for data that conformed to there premise! This is the utmost of unscientific procedures, and should be recognized immediatly by someone as intelligent as you. These people that don't believe the poetry stuff, (which, btw, I HAVE heard of before) can see and understand that, as I have been hammering on in the past, old age for the earth consistently disagrees with the bible on this account: Death and Struggle. Adam fell, causing death. It was his sin that started the ebb and flow of life as we know it. There was no death before he fell. In order for animals to have been evolving for millions of years before that would mean that there had been Death and Struggle BEFORE Adam's sin. Once you disavow the fact that Adam's sin caused the first death, you have also disavowed the entire philosophy of the Bible dealing with sin and sin nature: Man has choice. The first man CHOSE WRONG.

Secondly, I have absolutly NO inclination to remain calm when I see one of my dear friends accepting the Darwinist Lie. It grieves me to see the effect. And to think that I'm judging everyone else who believes differently from me is completely eroneous! I'm not judging them, because they don't have The Truth. Micah, it all boils down to the way you view God. It boils down to this one thing: How big do you think God is? How much of your life is completely under his control? How much, if He has made us, do you owe to him? I love people who don't believe same as me because they are my mission field! THEY are the people I want to reach with The Truth. We owe our lives to Christ, Micah, and we can't waste our time trying to define Truth. Jesus said "No man that puts his hand to the plow and looketh back is fit for the kingdom of God." It doesn't get much plainer than that.

In future, please try to address the questions being posed.
Posted 9/14/2005 at 11:22 PM by wallaceapprentice

Ok Nick, my final point on all this is solely to say that I'm not saying I believe in evolution. I'm trying to say that I don't know exactly how the earth was created because neither side can completely desproove the other side, and that is all I'm trying to say. You have you're belief, which is perfectly fine and many people would agree with you, however you don't know for sure. Ya, I know, the bible says so, but that is another arguement we're having. Look, I don't want to argue with you any more. All I wanted was to see if I could broaden your view of the bible. And if you're wondering, yes, I do have tons of scriptural references to back me up, but I'm not going to continue this any longer. I'm ending this arguement here, so until next time we talk Nick. (hopefully it'll be on something we can agree on) :)
Posted 9/15/2005 at 12:34 PM by mkcuiaba

I have my final point as well. *Ya, I know, the Bible says so.* Micah, what more do you need? Ever heard of simple faith? Have you gotten so lost in... whatever else that exists that you've forgotten that the Bible is infallable truth? Ultimate truth. I don't need to disproove the other side. I KNOW. Beyond a shadow of doubt. Can you say that about anything the Bible says if you can't say it about the first book?

*All I wanted was to see if I could broaden your view of the bible.* Micah, my view of the Bible never will be (because it cannot be) broadened. The Bible is one thing: Truth. It doesn't get any narrower than that.

*And if you're wondering, yes, I do have tons of scriptural references to back me up...* I don't doubt it. If we don't know the original hebrew language, we can misinterpret many verses of the Bible because of a lack of knowledge about context, etc.

I'm afraid, Micah, very afraid, that God, and the passionate pursuit of True Truth, is less than your highest priority.

Thanks for your input,
Posted 9/15/2005 at 11:36 PM by wallaceapprentice

Wednesday, September 14, 2005


If you want your child to never change what he believes, give him no reason to believe what he does.

It's becoming evident. For generations, a vast majority of the Old Order Amish have taught a gospel of works, not of salvation. And for generations they will continue if they never give their children a REASON to believe what they believe, because there children will NEVER care.

Of course, I'm generalizing. But the point remains.

I asked people outside of my Mennonite background questions. I got their answers. I approached my dad with their answers (and along with them, their bias as well), and he gave me answers of a different sort. So I went to the other people defending my father's point of view, and they returned fire; and on and on it went. Finally, after having fought my own self in this manner for months, I knew what I had to do. I forged a trail, with a fresh respect for my father, and finally knew what it meant to KNOW what I believe. And I'm still working on it.


There are the people who, for sake of singular modernity and not much else, leave everything they knew before and follow the trail of certain liberalistic nobility-is-in-seeing-truth-in-all-cultures, and often academic, mystics, down a road paved with compromise. After this, not much moral fiber remains. They've forsaken the moral standard they knew before, and chosen a path where such morality is of secondary value.

I pity their souls.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Spray Paint Crimes

Ladies and Gentlemen of the blogosphere,
It is my pleasure to present this, my eighteenth birthday blog. Yes, I actually feel different, knowing I have added the much acclaimed digit to my age.

Of course, this "coming of the age of reason," as it is referred to by the cultured and affluent, gives me the allowance for certain things. Probably, the foremost of these things comes to mind immediately; indeed, the thing you think of soonest may be, to some people, the single most important decision a young man can make, assuming he has already decided to follow Christ. With this coming of age (at least to the federal government), comes the potential for downfall, much evil, and a lifetime of shame. Folks, I am serious. I am sure, very sure, that by now you know what I'm referring to. I'm referring to purchasing a can of spray paint at Wal*Mart. Yes. You heard me right. Wal*Mart, in response to the innumerable heneous crimes associated with spray paint, has a policy of "We card under 18" for all spray paint purchases. Oh, yes, folks, let's applaud them. "Good job, Wal*Mart! Thank you for saving us the awful chaos of having minors on the street toting SPRAY PAINT!"

For crying out loud, LET ME HAVE MY SPRAY PAINT!!! It distresses me when a cashier, likely younger than I, asks me "Uhh, I'm sorry, are you 18?", and I have to respond, "Uhh, no." when for all practical purposes I AM!!! What great transformation takes place on the morn of this much acclaimed day, the 18th birthday, that merits such unsolicited perceived growth in maturity? I submit that NO ONE has EVER gone to sleep on the eve of their 18th birthday (or more likely, on the morning of it), after having gained experience in the art of graffiti, and awakened the next day deciding, "Uhh, I feel different somehow. I think I'll quit doing graffiti and turn to a life of labor." I don't think so!

And of COURSE! wherever there is a villain, there is an accomplice. That's the worst part. Bueller's does it too!

Sherwin Williams to the rescue. Yes. They would sell me spray paint, but... they don't carry the spray variety! Only buckets! Lowe's. Yes. They sell it to minors, and not only that, they actually stock the stuff. Wow. What a menace to society. A LARGE store that DARES to sell spray paint, the evil substance that can lead to the life of guilt. Shame. How can one face one's family after a bout with the stuff? Please, grocery stores of these *Untied* States of America, save us from the everlasting crime of graffiti! Deny the abominable substance to ALL who dare to attempt a purchase without first identifying themselves as 18 years of age or more! And give us FREEDOM! Freedom from minors armed with the potentially *harmful*, highly pressurized, and infinitely sinful cans. Freedom to wake up in the morning with the full assured knowledge that our garage doors (out here in Amish Country) were not painted shut, and that the red oozy stuff on the remains of a broken mirror IS indeed blood, so that we can panic and call the ambulance.


Friday, September 02, 2005

The Fact of Truth and the Debate of it.

Ladies and Gentlemen of the Anabaptist/political blogosphere (myself included): Get a grip. For vanity of vanities, all is vanity and vexation of spirit. Solomon, in all his wisdom, found the ENTIRE planet vain! We have in this verse presented to us a perfect rebuttal of the spirit of politicism in many of our blogs today. Several of my friends are the writers behind them, and it has not till now occurred to me that this is most obviously vain! A perfect example, hosted on "The [Not So] Daily Me", was given when Joshua B. Good and Hans Mast left a series (something like 125 comments, assisted by several other visitors) of contradicting (basically, liberal vs. conservative, JBG the former, HM the latter) comments, solely for the purpose of superimposing their own opinions on the other party. While I, by pressupossition, would have sided with the conservative, but I found the controversy so overwhelmingly STUPID, it's overall content borderlining on childish. It prompted me to leave a comment attempting to bring to light the vanity of such a discussion. Actually, discussion barely fits the bill.

Josh or Hans, if you're reading this, please, nothing personal, seriously! But how much does fundamental faith play into your discussions, and what, REALLY, does it matter who wins? I submit, gentlmen, that none of you have taken into consideration the level of hypochrisy that is percieved by readers not believing in Christianity; and that perhaps you, looking at, say, evolutionists bickering in the same manner as proof positive that the theory is flawed! Take care, gentlemen that you don't override the foundation of your faith, the reason for which you have a moral fiber on which to base your political opinions, with the intelligence that you have garnered. I'm speaking more specificaly to Josh, since Hans is still in his senior year in HS, and Josh has a BA in American Political History and MA in Historical Education. Amazing, though, that such a discussion would exist, a young guy vs. college grad/public school teacher with various participants on both sides.

The fact is, I myself wished to know more about politics in order to be involved in such discussions. That's why I went to the site in the first place. Then I printed the entire 125 comments and took them to lunch, where I began reading them, and the more I read, the more I saw: This is vanity. And I'm not talking to knock either one of these guys. I've had the priveledge of joining Josh for breakfast once, and Hans for lunch once, and I appreciate them both. I respect them both highly for their respective levels of intelligence. This is not about them! This is about us Christians not being able to discuss our differences amicably and with reason rather than trying to superimpose each other's opinions upon the other party. How is it that we Christians often forget the sacrifice payed for us, and we only care that WE are right. That our political views are established. What if, ladies and gentlemen, we would all discover that it is impossible for the government to legislate morality? Isn't that what politically conservative Anabaptists are all about. What would we conservatives do next? What if we conservatives would discover after this fact that liberal foreign policy was superior to our conservative foreign policy? What would we do then? Would we create a new group? Or would we just shrug and say, "shucks, they're right."

As is happens, there are holes in both groups, Conservative and liberal. Both have their shortcomings, none of which are very short in coming at all! If the liberal agenda saw that not all conservatives tout the death penalty, and conservatives found that not all liberals were pro-choice, etc. we might start to see a greater good. We might start to work together to overcome this useless wall. And maybe, just maybe, from the outside looking in, people can start to see the difference that Christians can make, instead of seeing the differences that we have and look at it as we look at two bickering evolutionists: Neither one is more right, they just both prove flaws in the theory. Do we want to make Christanity look like it has flaws in the "theory?" Au Contraire, my friends, Au Contraire.

Fundamentals, people. It's all about the fundamentals. Get back to them. Get a grip.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

For your information

This particular day has the dubious distinction of being Speak Intelligently Day! And for those of you who speak with eloquence every day of the year, this is Speak Brilliantly Day; in which case, this blog is not for you!!

I'm curious. What is the attraction in speaking with intelligence? What makes the human mind aspire toward intelligence? Hummm. I think I've hit upon something! I never thought of that before. Really, don't *most* of us want to appear smart? What is the psychological benefit of such?

It would appear that this is either an intrinsically good thing, or an intrinsically bad thing! Let's rewind to the beginning, where there were only two people in existence. It is possible that, being rather fresh at living, Adam and Eve did NOT have an inordinate amount intellectual prowess, or even an aspiration toward such. Then again, maybe they were brilliant! Maybe, just maybe, God made them as ideal as any two people can possibly be, with IQs that were unheard of (quite literally, too, being the only people on the earth, pretty much anything was unheard of).

Either case being as it may, there appears to have been a tree in the Garden, called the tree of the *knowledge* of Good and Evil. Aha! I think I've hit upon something! Here was Eve, in the Garden, being intrinsically attracted to knowledge, and tempted to obtain it in a less than commendable fashion. She succumbs.

And so we have the turmoil, the darkness, the sin, the death, the struggle. For sake of knowledge obtained. Yes?

So why do so many Anabaptists look down on a higher education? Why have we made knowledge our nemesis. Of course, I'm speaking very generally, most in reaction to a post on a similar topic at the by-log (see link at left).

Then again, what if a higher education is intrinsically bad? What if the quest for knowledge, and even the IDEA of such, began on that fateful day when Eve decided she wanted to know more? And if that is the case, where do we draw the line between learning the basics and a higher education?

I'd appreciate any insight.

Monday, August 29, 2005

Knowing something

Again, influenced by the emotive power of a screaming tenor saxophone and the smoothest beat available, I have decided to begin perhaps the first of a series of evaluations of the validities of the theory of evolution in the classroom (and perhaps in the meantime explain why I think that the link to the left is the funniest sites in the world). The first exposition will be on the subject of "knowing something", and how it effects the way we look at modern science.

First, epistemology is, for those of you who don't know, is, according to, the branch of philosophy that studies knowledge, it's presuppositions and foundations, and it's extent and validity. Basically, as Francis Schaeffer put it, It is how we know that we know. This is pretty much what I'm dealing with.

A problem that we are currently facing as a nation is the one of teaching [I]ntelligent [D]esign in our science classroom, in addition to the theory of evolution. A setback that we face is that ID isn't *science*, as defined by those with a serious bias against it. Indeed, it appears to be the antithesis thereof (again, as defined by those with a antipathetic bias).

Apparently, the very fact of God or a belief in him falsifies any claims to *science* and immediately classifies it as *religion*. This causes a very obvious problem for us Christians. This disallows any stakes that we may claim in the scientific agenda. This is why, when asked if he believes in evolution, the ardent science teacher will say, "No. I don't believe in evolution. I merely accept that the earth is very old and that life has changed very much over a long period of time." They can never call it belief.

As creationists attempting to get a "belief" in God into our "science" classroom, we would do well to recognize this and try to understand why this is so. Truthfully, they have no choice but to believe in something, because everyone has a worldview. Every single person that lives has a biased presupposition as to what occurred to shape the earth and the life in it into what it is now (this makes it impossible for anyone to be completely, totally objective about a subject such as this).

One of the things that shapes science is evidence. According to the University of California Museum of paleontology, "Evidence is the basic stuff of science. Without evidence there is only speculation." Still, the evolutionary theory has been singularly lacking in providing evidence of it's most pivotal *facts*, a transitional state and a gain in genetic information! Indeed, the acuteness of this problem is such that evolutionists cannot nearly satisfy a fundamentalist creationists' questions on the matter! When it comes to evidence, which is basically the substance of what we "know", evolution has failed the scientific method.

"Inferences are logical conclusions based on observable facts", says the University of California. "Much of what we know from scientific study is based on inferences from data, whether the object of study is a star or an atom." They then go on to reason that, even though no one has ever seen the inside of an atom, we can know what is inside it by inferences. They liken this to "inferring" that the world is billions of years old, via "multiple lines of evidence." My question to them is this: What are those multiple lines of evidence, and where are they found?

One of the constraints of science is the limit of a repeatable test. The foremost problem in saying that we can infer information from the past the same as we can from an atom or star is that the atom and star exist in the present, quite obviously, while the past is just that: past! It only happened once! Moreover, no one was there to see it! I repeat my previous question: What are those multiple lines of evidence, and where are they found?

If anyone has an answer for my question, or an opinion concerning the content here (contrary or otherwise), please leave a comment.

The Anatomy of a Wasted Life

If there's anything that I hate, it's the thought of a wasted life.

During a particularly busy part of my life, as I was leaving for something one evening, my dad said, "You know, Nic, It's not a bad thing to not have something to do every once in a while." To which I replied, "Yeah, it also does one no good."

Living a Godly life is dangerous; not living it is even more so. If you're new, hold on tight. If your a seasoned pro, you can identify.

First of all, what's the difference between a wasted life and a non-wasted life? What does it matter to say that I have NOT wasted my life thus far, and do not plan to do so?

To start off with, we need a gauge with which to measure wastedness. I was talking with our youth leader, Reuben, about retirement, and I said, "I hate that word. I refuse to retire. I refuse to sit in a Nursing Home. I refuse to buy a motor home and travel the Untied States of America. (sic) Ever. I'm going die running." The newest member of our youth group replied to that in singularly non-sequitur form by saying "Well I'd rather retire than work myself into an early grave." Now, I was fine with that, sort of, until he added "Which is probably what I'll do."

Good grief! The apathy towards the only Cause that is worth an early grave. Now while some people don't even pretend to WANT to understand what it means to have zeal, passion and hope, THAT blew me away! For a 15 year old to look at his life and say "Humm, I guess I'll probably not be successful (even carnally! -Nic), so I'll probably have to work my tail off for the rest of my life. Guess I'll just die a little earlier, then. Oh well."

Never ONE thought as to what the purpose is of his existence on earth, or what had to take place for his existence to have purpose in the first place!

I heard a song a few days ago that asked "How can it be that none of the deeper questions cross your mind? Are you afraid to find surprises?" Then the chorus: "Don't you wonder where hope comes from and where Love was born and why does the sun break through the clouds and melt the pain away? Doesn't it make you want to know the Source?" I wanted to scream those lyrics from the roof of the car I was driving in, all the way through the ages into a new era of apathy haters, and burn out the spirit of struggle that is so undeniably prevalent in our society, particularly our youth today.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I am ready for a SERIOUS battle, waging war on the very existence of apathy in our culture, and I'm taking soldiers, people to take on the challenge of destroying a spirit that has taken down the very hope for a strong future. And I'm not talking about a monetary success, either, I'm talking about the future of the effective conservative Mennonite movement in particular. And maybe this isn't anything new. Maybe this is old hat and apathy has been a problem for more than just this generation. That's not the point. The point is, this is a problem now, and it's apparent to me because I live, as a conservative Mennonite Christian youth, in this culture, at this time.

Any comments on this would be appreciated greatly, as well as any insight on how to solve this problem. Remember, non bloggers, you can leave comments too!

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Love. A paradox.

The following is a peice that I wrote a week ago, in some wierd kind of pensive mood after a period of something of a self-conflicting social something or another. If you don't get it, don't worry. I'm not sure I got all of it either. The emotion of reading it is half the experience. It will conclude my post for today.

Seeking love, knowing the Lover, and thereby having found the former, yet continuing the search with passion. It's one of the great paradoxes of life.

Who am I? Why am I that? What point is there in my being such?
I'm an expression. Of peace. Of hope, and, primarily, of the Love[r], the ultimate Artist.

What hope have I to turn the world? Whereupon do I step into the world of certain blur? Of living death. Where is death? Beacon, oh Light! please beam hells death into existence! But of course, this is hope against hope. Wish against Truth. No.

The bells toll. Run! RUN! At the door, finds nothing restful, all is moving, spinning round, and Love and Thunder fight. Fury rages, old maids wishing all was calm and still as Nativity. But were it such, the calamity would yeild no end.

Never a thought that rushed through my subconcience semi-reality hit me like it did that day. "Love beat Thunder when blood and water flowed." Oh Love! whatever lives within me, That great paradox proclaim! For such is always, never ending, overflowing world without end.

Monday, August 22, 2005

White House Media

Today was interesting. I did something I'm convinced none of you have ever done before. I phoned in to the White House Media Department, and asked them to put me on the list of people that gets faxed whenever there's a media event in Ohio. My Internation Press Credentials are currently rated only well enough to get info for Ohio events. Sometime, I'll maybe add to that, but it costs.

The Lord is good, and true, and consistent. And He's taught me a lesson. Again. "Just wait, Nic," He says, "You'll have your adventure. Just stay where you are and grow." And with His voice of comfort, and hands of a tender warrior, He lays my fears to rest. The whole big picture fits perfectly into His hands, with enough room left to hold yours, too, if you just let Him. Such huge, infinite hands. All the future, perfectly invisible from the viewpoint of the tip of one of His fingers, looking down into the palm of His hand. What an expanse. What sheer size!

No one reading this can fathom the peace of such release without experiencing it firsthand. Believe me.

All the pressures, all the responsiblities. All of it gone at a whim, if only He speaks the word. Just a word. No more excuses to just sit around. Wonderful.

This is me.

To be completely honest, the fact of my posting again has little to do with letting you know who I am (this is me), but rather to get all the particulars sorted out about this blog, trying to figure out what I have to do in order make it look like all of my cool friends, and to make make you aware of all the aforementioned cool people's blogs via linking them to my site. Some of these things can only be accomplished by posting again. One of the things I wanted to do was put a picture in my profile, so I'm going to post a photo in this blog, then link it to my profile.

Anyway, here I sit, listening to... you guessed it! Jazz!!! Hurrah for freedom! Huzzah for music with feeling! Although, while it's not what one would call sacred, it certainly is soulful. Wow. has a stream coming over iTunes, and that's the kind of all internet radio stations, in my opinions. Another cool one for all you sacred accapella music lovers out there is (sp?). They also have a stream over iTunes, but you may be able to access it on the site itself. They have some bangin' music!

So, for now, this post is coming to a conclusion. Whatever comes hereafter is of no consequence, I'm only trying to get things sorted out.

The right foot

Take a step. Look back to make sure it was the right move. Analise it.

I'm being incredibly influenced by the music coming over the internet radio I'm listening to. iTunes radio has a few groovin jazz stations, and one of them is going for it right now. It's amazing how music and that type of thing influences the way you think. I couldn't be in a pensive mood right now if I tried. Screaming saxes, synthesizers bangin it out. So invigorating. All the freeflowing patterns, never stopping, often repeating, but never monotonous, and never predictable. I love jazz.

The right foot. I suppose I don't really know what I mean by that. All I know is that, for all practicle purposes, my life it right. Just plain right. I'm so blessed. I feel like sometimes I go through the fire. God testing me to see if I really trust him, am really able to lay my life into his hands. Wonderful blessings. Best foot forward.

The Lord is telling me something. I wonder what wonderful thing he will reveal to me next. He is the greatest schoolmaster I've ever had. He's also the only one that I really, really *want* to listen to! For the past few weeks, I've just really been wandering about my life's direction. Not sure where the Lord would have me. Now, I am finally realising that God is going to take care of the details. All of them. That's what he meant by not worrying about tommorow. It's so wonderfully freeing to know that the future isn't in my hands. My hands could never hold it. But God is infinite, and is as concerned about my relationship with him as anything or anyone else. How incredible. Even more incredible is the fact that it is so with EVERYONE!