Randall McRoberts

Keb’Mo’ - Oklahoma. Good stuff.

Lemon drops

The New Wilderness (Idle Words)

So why have the gravediggers of online privacy suddenly grown so worried about the health of the patient?

You know, I never really liked that magnification feature available on the Mac dock. But lately my old eyes have appreciated using it in order to read the little badge numbers.

Instagram Made to Make You Feel Bad, Madonna Says (link)

“You get caught up in comparing yourself to others,” the 60-year-old star tells The Sun in a new interview. “I think Instagram is made to make you feel bad.” She says it’s especially hard for artists to develop their art and as people under the Instagram microscope.

Link: Instagram Made to Make You Feel Bad, Madonna Says

Generous (but Critical) Orthodoxy

I am a proponent of a generous orthodoxy. That is, I am willing to give a lot of latitude to people about non-essential matters of the faith. I mean, I read the book by Brian McLaren a long time ago, and I get it.

This is in contrast to rigid theological systems which require toeing the long on every thing in their list. Such as pre-trib rapture. Or a rapture at all, for that matter. If you diverge from the party line on any little thing, I guess you have to go start a new denomination.

These systems usually come from a flat, wooden interpretation of scripture, where the Bible is seen as simply a set of propositions. Little effort is given to understanding genre or figures of speech. Reading the Bible is a scholastic exercise, performed by jailhouse lawyers.

Systems such as these have done a lot of harm by making people think this is what Christianity is, that this is what God is. You can’t blame people for turning their back on a rigid system like that.

The better way is to realize that, though these people think they have a corner on the truth, they are deluded. There are ways to be more generous in deciding who is in and who is out.

At the same time, I don’t want to be overly generous. That is, I want to be critical about what I accept. I want to be a good student of the Bible and read it in the right way. Not too narrow. Not too wide. Every doctrine needs some error bars around it.

I’ve learned a lot just by reading most everything that NT Wright has written. I find him to be a paragon of what I would call a generous but critical orthodoxy. I would like to exemplify the same thing.

I guess, in the end, I’d rather err on the side of generosity. I’ll be happy to let God make the final decisions.

Let Go of Twitter and Facebook. And I mean it.

You already know that social media outlets are the curse of your daily life. You already know that they bring you little information and tons of trouble. You already want to quit them, but you think you can’t.

You can. I did.

Let go of them. In their place:

  1. Get yourself a RSS reader. I recommend NetNewsWire, but tastes vary. If your experience with such things ended when Google Reader ended, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the state of the art.
  2. Start looking for weblogs that talk about stuff you care about. Blogs are not dead, no matter what you may have heard.
  3. Let one blog lead you to another and keep adding them to your RSS reader.
  4. If you start to dislike one or more of them, remove them from your RSS reader and don’t give them a second thought.
  5. Pretty soon, you’ll have all you want to read, whenever you want to read it.
  6. You will wonder why you ever got hooked on the noxious stuff you used to see every day.

It works. I promise. Money back guarantee.

16686 - Resources I own in Logos
16641 - Those that are available in the mobile version
16627 - Those that are downloaded to my iPad Pro
14 - Available in mobile app, but not downloadable

When I started using Logos, I craved a CD drive so I wouldn’t have to swap floppies. Now I have almost all my resources on an iPad. It’s better than Star Trek.

My iPad still has almost 600 GB of storage remaining. Maybe I didn’t need 1 TB.

On the means of propulsion : Essays in Idleness

A branching, mycelial, thread-like hyphae, spreading organically through the human arbour; meandering through the fields, bridging the rivers, tunnelling under obstacles and crowded city streets. Short, pleasant walks at either end. Carts and (electric) buggies to provide doorstep-to-doorstep for the halt and feeble. The odd electrical hay wagon.

Using NetNewsWire full-time now on the Mac. My biggest issue has been sending an item to Pinboard, which I use as my Read Later Service. Spillo provides a nice share-to-pinboard service which works the way I want it to work.

Some days nothing will work as background music but smooth jazz. Like today.

My alma mater is providing email boxes to all alumni. Is this a common thing?

Spring Color:

Early Spring in the Park:

gilest.org: Black and white and RSS

Photos you can only see in a feed

Homelessness Up 12% In Los Angeles County, The rise comes despite two voter-approved tax hikes and more than $600 million spent last year on social services and new supportive housing. Officials blame rising rents and evictions.

Penguin Tank:

Was that a crowd rumble because the display stand costs an extra $1000?

Aren't we about Due for an Exile?

Israel was exiled to Assyria and wiped out. Judah was exiled to Babylonia for half a century and was never again a truly independent kingdom except for the short Maccabean period, which was not so hot in its own right.

Why these periods of exile?

Because the bulk of Israel/Judah did not obey God. They were influenced by the culture around them to the extent that they became part of it. They gave service to God, but also to the cultural gods around them. They were in the world and part of the world.

“In the world and not of the world.” It sounds like one of those extra-biblical aphorisms that Christians are fond of, like “The Lord helps those who help themselves.” But it isn’t that way at all. It’s embedded in the prayer of Jesus for his disciples (and for us) in John 17. Read it if you don’t believe me.

Well, in my opinion we (the church) are not doing any better than the Israelites did at that thing. We are every bit part of the world.

We crave acceptance by the culture. We water down our message. We offer cheap grace and we partake of it fully. We modify our culture so it is acceptable the the bigger culture. We try to control the culture through political means. We certainly don’t want to be seen as different. We are more interested in being a club than being a church, a social network of people like us.

It seems we are unable to live in the world without becoming part of it. Just like Israel and Judah.

Why would God be pleased with the church any more than he was with Israel?

I shouldn’t be surprised if God decided to exile our part of his church into some foreign and awful place and let us stew in that for a while. I shouldn’t be surprised if it happens soon, or even if it has already begun.

That might be what we need.

Amish at the Zoo:

Who asked for whole grain fig newtons? Are they suddenly healthy or something?

Wetlands:

JJ Cale and Eric Clapton - The Road to Escondido

JJ Cale - Stay Around

How can Amazon afford to provide 1-day shipping for free on a single item under $10?

Randall McRoberts
rmcrob@rmcrob.com

Made in Indiana