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47 posts from June 2010

Should I press the red "Donate" button on the Phoenix Rescue Mission website?

I remember how I felt when I worked out in the sun in the country of Mali in West Africa when the temperature hit the 115 degree mark like it is in Phoenix, Arizona right now.  It may have been dry heat, but I constantly felt like the radiator in my body was going to boil over. Phoenix rescue mission

That's why my attention was grabbed by this video from the Phoenix Rescue Mission about the homeless in that city during this really hot part of the summer.  

They need help buying food and bottled water for their mission.  They are running short during this period when the temps get in the solid triple digits.  

Even though I live in a different part of the country,  I think I might contribute enough to buy a few cases of water.  Here's the video:

Summer of Hope from Phoenix Rescue Mission on Vimeo.

Could social media become my false god?

Social media (blogging, Facebook, Twitter, etc.), as technology, is neutral and harmless. Social media can and should be used for the glory of God and the advancement of the gospel in every possible way. But natural-born idolaters like you and me are no more than a few clicks away from making this good thing a god thing.


I catch myself looking at the stats on my three blogs. I can easily do the same with Facebook and Twitter.

Why do I do that?

Could it be because of pride? When my stats are good I feel just a little more important about myself. Does that take away attention from God and his son Jesus.

That's the point of this Resurgence blog post--Justification by Twitter--by Dustin Neeley of Louisville, Kentucky.

He writes: The most dangerous of these tainted meals is pride. Few other creations in history have allowed us to see how "important" we and our thoughts are with such tantalizing immediacy as our blog and tweet stats.

He gives three suggestions to keep that from happening: think before you post, considering fasting from social media for a season and believe the gospel where you first go for the approval of God that comes through Jesus Christ.

Food for thought on a Wednesday morning in mid-Michigan.

YOU JUDGE: Is this persecution of Christians by police in the city of Dearborn (MI)?

Is there a back story to this video of what appears to be Christians clearly being persecuted and denied their free speech rights in the city of Dearborn?  It appears to be pretty straightforward intimidation by the police.  Does anybody else see it that way?  Is it real?  Reaction anybody? (Hat Tip to LansingOnlineNews about the video)

Let me show you some pictures of my new grandson-Xavier Dominik Jones

This video shows Gladys getting her first look at her first grandchild, Xavier Dominick.  He was in Krista's labor and delivery room.  His eyes were open when we started talking to him.  He kept trying to suck his fist.

Here's a still of me holding Xavier. We talked for five minutes or so about a variety of topics including the new iPad, his great parents, Michigan State and topics like that. He looked interested.

Grandma Thorp holds Xavier while having an ear-to-ear smile on her face. His birth marks the official beginning of not only a new chapter in our life, but another volume of the set that has our story for the past 29 years.

My mental hard drive is filled from 29 years worth of marriage memories

Meandher It's our 29th anniversary today and it's Father's Day.  As we get ready to whoop it up today to celebrate starting with church, I am loaded down with wonderful memories from almost three decades.  What do I remember as I get ready to hop into the shower?  Here goes:

  • The best part of a mission trip to Mali in West Africa a few years ago was when I returned to our local airport and Gladys was waiting for me with a big smile at the bottom of the escalator.
  • Waiting for me in the parking lot with the kids in the back seat at lunch time so they could take me out to eat at McDonalds.
  • Seeing Gladys walk down the hallway at the hospital towards me the night my mom died.
  • Watching her interact with her students in her third grade classroom and seeing how much she enjoyed teaching.
  • Working with the kids when they were very young to fill her pre-school classroom with balloons to celebrate her birthday.
  • The loving look on her face when I caught up with her in a local grocery store on a Friday morning and seeing her unflappable look after telling her I had just been fired from my job.
  • Working together on a homemade video where she taught youngsters how to make change.
  • Being there with her for the birth of both kids.
  • Many, many walks through the neighborhood talking about issues in her classroom helping me see the importance of teachers and the complexity of teaching.
  • Sitting side-by-side when we took our Beagle to the vet to have her put to sleep.
  • Being on our downstairs couch watching tv as she worked at her desk putting together lesson plans.
  • Working through our daughter's first ear infection when she was an infant and not knowing why she wouldn't stop crying.

I could go on.  The memories are rich and they are vast and I thank God for each and everyone of them.  We continue to make more.  I have been blessed by being married to Gladys and I continue to be blessed.

To God be the glory.  It's all a gift from him and I know that.

Is President Obama starting to look and sound like Jimmy Carter?

The president is starting to look snakebit. He’s starting to look unlucky, like Jimmy Carter. It wasn’t Mr. Carter’s fault that the American diplomats were taken hostage in Tehran, but he handled it badly, and suffered.


Columnist Peggy Noonan-click above link--raises great discussion points about President Obama's response to the oil spill.

Can these questions be discussed without all the partisan shrillness that comes from both sides?

In Michigan, it seems like you're allowed to be either for or against anybody or anything. As a Republican, I'm not allowed to say he's my and our President too and I want him to move our country forward, but I have some questions or criticism.

Is the rumor true about "super-wife" and me?

Yes, it is true that we celebrate our 29th wedding anniversary tomorrow.  It's an occasion worthy of us whooping it up more than a little.

If I ever doubt the goodness of God, I just have to look at her and our marriage.  She's been a true gift to me.  She has shown me unconditional love and I know that she reflects what she has received.  And that comes only from the actions of one person, Jesus and the grace he has shown all of us.

Thank-you God for Gladys and our marriage.

The "Boomer In The Pew" asks what it means to fear the Lord

One of the instructions that rings through the whole of the Bible is to "fear the Lord".  In fact, as King Solomon surveyed all the things that might be good for a man, he concluded his search with fearing God.

So what does this fearing of God mean?


I've probably heard the term "fear the Lord" thousands of times over my lifetime.

What does it mean? It seems natural that when I look at myself and then look at the God who created and controls everything that I need to understand this, at least to the best of my ability.

Dave Porter of the Boomer In The Pew blog raises this question about fearing the Lord and then tries to answer it from his perspective.

What do you think it means?

Are you getting excited yet about Michigan's next governor?

Attorney General Mike Cox leads five Republicans running for governor for the first time since January, according to a poll released Friday to the Free Press and WXYZ-TV (Channel 7).


Check out this poll in this morning's Detroit Free Press about the leaders in the Republican and Democratic nomination for governor of Michigan.

Are you talking about the race or about any of the candidates at the kitchen table?

Nobody's lit our fire yet. How about you?

Thinking about death on a Saturday morning in Michigan

Behind my sadness, I think, was the reminder that I too am getting older. The death of someone I listened to when I was young reminded me that time isn’t marching on—it’s running out!


It's almost seven in the morning here in mid-Michigan and the sun might come up today and I'm reading about how fast life marches by and how quickly death comes.

Every cliche about the quick passing of time and the seasons seems to becoming more true. It's almost the Fourth of July and it seems like I just put away the snow blower.

This devotion from the Our Daily Bread by Bill Crowder is a great reminder of the importance of being ready for when God says it's time to go.

He bases it on Psalm 90 written by Moses and which really exposes the shortness of life and how God choreographs everything from our birth to our death.

Is MI Dem governor candidate Andy Dillon talking out of both sides of his mouth?

Lansing -- House Speaker Andy Dillon's introductory gubernatorial campaign ad touts his support for "hire Michigan first" legislation. But his camp hired a Chicago firm to do the 30-second spot.


Isn't this what's making Michigan residents cyncial about its political leaders?

MI House Speaker Andy Dillon is running for governor and says businesses should hire from our state first.

Then he hires an Illinois firm to do his first tv commercial. Click on the Detroit News link above to get his rationale.

Buy it? Forked tongue? Can you trust him?

Is Tom Izzo showing that it's time for him to leave MSU?

But what he must answer, for his, his family's, and MSU's good -- and those are his primary responsibilities today -- is whether he has already separated to some irretrievable degree from his life with the Spartans.


There comes a time when it's right to leave a job. Everybody who's worked for a while knows that.

You can become bored with a job and you know it's time to leave.

Detroit News sports columnist Lynn Henning raises the question that Tom Izzo may have already mentally separated himself from the MSU job by waiting so long to make a decision about going to the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Does he still have the loyalty to MSU that's needed to have a winning program or is he suffering from East Lansing burnout?

It might be time for MSU fans to wrap a bow around his Big Ten career, wish him well and start looking for a new $3 million a year coach.