Saturday, June 20, 2009

Prayer Study Part 6- Formation Prayer

An ongoing study of Richard Foster's book on Prayer. Previous studies can be found here.

What is Formation Prayer?
•A process of transformation in which our lives increasingly mirror the Son’s
•Formation prayer begins when our simple prayers are not answered in the way we expect
•We begin a process of change called conversatio morum or death of the status quo

•Prayer is only one element in the process of Christian formation
•Formation prayer is both an active and passive process
•We are both pursuing God and being pursued by God

Model One-- The Spiritual Exercises of Ignatius of Loyola
•Week 1–Contemplate our sins in the light of the love of Christ
•Week 2—Focus on the life of Christ and earnestly seek to conform our lives to his
•Week 3—Contemplate the passion of Christ and seek to die to our own idolatries
•Week 4—Contemplate the resurrection of Christ and seek the power of the Spirit to live our lives in conformity with Christ’s

Model Two—St. Benedict’s Rule
•Composed of 12 steps toward humility
•“Humility means to live as close to the truth as possible”
•Reverence God in daily life
•Confess any sinful thought or action to God
•Do God’s will instead of our own
•Cultivate silence in place of idle speech
•Use plain, simple speech
•Endure “with patience the injuries and afflictions we face”
•“Be content in all things”

Model Three--The Little Way
•Based on the approach of St. Therese of Lisieux
•“To seek out the menial job, to welcome unjust criticisms, to befriend those who annoy us, to help those who are ungrateful”
•A way of life that anyone can engage in everyday

•Will be viewed by others as selfish and slothful
•We learn to let go of the opinions of others
•Our true self is unmasked
•“Solitude gives us the power not to win the rat race but to ignore the rat race altogether.”
Other Ways to do Formation Prayer
•Contemplate our own death
•Brings humility
•Best done in light of Gal. 2:19—what does it mean to be crucified with Christ?
•Practice the prayer of docility
•Surrender ourselves to the hands of God, the potter
•A bruised reed he will not break, and a dimly burning wick he will not quench. Isaiah 42:3

Friday, June 19, 2009

Obama's 'Go-Soft-With-Killers' Approach

While taking a hardliner attitude toward Israel, Obama is treating Iran, Hammas et al with kid gloves. Disturbing to say the least and a prelude I fear to hard days ahead because when weakness is percieved, people die.

From the American Thinker:

"...While many European leaders have been using very tough language to criticize the Iranian regime for its handling of the election and its aftermath, and standing with the demonstrators, Barack Obama alone seems to be siding with the regime. Clearly, Obama does not see regime change in Iran as a positive development, and seems fearful of offending the mullahs and Ahmadinejad.

This go-soft-with-killers approach is causing unusual verbal gymnastics by Obama acolytes in the left wing press (e.g. the Nation, the Guardian) who are desperate to find a way to spin the story so that Obama's reticence in challenging the crackdown and the election theft is in fact seen as a calculated and nuanced approach to the Iranian situation.

Israel, on the other hand, seems to be a different story, and the Administration seems to think it important to go public with criticism of Israel virtually every day. Three separate news stories in the last two days should make clear to all but the willfully blind that Obama still has Israel in its sights. "

Obama Intimidation Tactics Continue

Obama continues with his intimidation tactics first mentioned here.

Apparently the FBI is getting involved to find out what happened to a number of e-mails:

The Federal Bureau of Investigation has begun looking into a dispute that is linked to an AmeriCorps money scandal that has fingers pointing all the way up to the White House because of President Obama's dismissal of an inspector general who was on the case.

According to a report in the Sacramento Bee, acting U.S. Attorney Lawrence G. Brown has confirmed the agency is looking into the "circumstances" regarding the alleged destruction of e-mails regarding a dispute over the handling of money at Mayor Kevin Johnson's "brainchild" St. HOPE Academy, which had been investigated after allegations that public funds were misused. (more from WND)

Now according to Judicial Watch Obama has blocked another IG probe:

"...A few months ago TARP Inspector General Neil Barofsky published a scathing report revealing that the financial bailout has little oversight, is severely mismanaged and “inherently vulnerable to fraud, waste and abuse.” That preliminary probe led to at least 20 criminal investigations—for securities fraud, tax law violations and mortgage modification fraud—and Barofsky predicted the risk would only grow.

Now the Obama Administration is blocking Barofsky, a former federal prosecutor in New York, from further investigating what he has determined to be a troubling experiment of U.S. tax dollars. The president’s Treasury Secretary delayed at least one recent inquiry and has evidently determined that the agency (Treasury Department) Barofsky is charged with watching has legal authority over his office, which clearly threatens its independence...."

Is North Korea Bluffing?

We are about to find out...

U.S. Military Set to Intercept North Korean Ship Suspected of Proliferating Missiles, Nukes
The USS John McCain, a navy destroyer, will intercept the ship Kang Nam as soon as it leaves the vicinity off the coast of China, according to a senior U.S. defense official.

Where Are Obama's Records

I don't really know what to think of this. Initially (back during the election) I thought it much ado about nothing, but I am increasingly uneasy with everything Obama and beginning to wonder...

From WND the story of Senator Coburn calling for vetting of candidates' eligibility in all future elections. In the course of the article we not only get an impressive listing of lawsuits seeking publication of his birth certificate but also a disturbing list of documents not provided by Obama which includes:

"... his kindergarten records, his Punahou school records, his Occidental College records, his Columbia University records, his Columbia thesis, his Harvard Law School records, his Harvard Law Review articles, his scholarly articles from the University of Chicago, his passport, his medical records, hisfiles from his years as an Illinois state senator, his Illinois State Bar Association records, any baptism records, and his adoption records. "

It would seem like an easy matter to put to bed if there was nothing to hide, yet lawyers for Obama are spending a great deal of money and effort to quash lawsuits and keep documents hidden. I just wonder, why?

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Casual Sex is Unhealthy

Doctors, Joe McIlhaney and Freda McKissic Bush, explain what we now know about sex and the human brain in their book, Hooked: New Science on How Casual Sex Is Affecting Our Children

From OneWoldNews:

...Males have their own neurochemical related to bonding: vasopressin. It floods the male brain during sexual intercourse, causing him to feel at least partially bonded to every woman with whom he's been intimate. If men begin a pattern of having sex with partner after partner, they risk not developing the ability to form long-term emotional attachment. As McIlhaney and Bush put it: "Their inability to bond after multiple liaisons is almost like tape that loses its stickiness after being applied and removed multiple times." ...

...Now let's add to that new information that neuroscience teaches us about the brain chemistry of sex and bonding some cold, hard facts about how effective birth control really is when it comes to teenagers. The authors of Hooked have compiled the following statistics from various sources:

- 20 percent of 12- to 18-year-olds using the Pill will become pregnant within six months

- 20 percent of teens under 18 using condoms will become pregnant within a year

- 50 percent of female teenagers who live with a boyfriend and use contraception will become pregnant within a year...

...For those of us unconvinced by moral or religious arguments, it's time to re-order our priorities. Now that we have science behind us, it's time for society to change its collective mind when it comes to sex, just as it did with smoking. Maybe in one generation, we can undergo a transformation when it comes to sex outside of marriage. Maybe TV shows and movies will stop implying that casual sex is no big deal. Maybe we'll begin to teach young people that waiting till marriage is best. Then the dopamine and the oxytocin and the vasopressin can do their jobs of helping to make two people one.

Obama Fires IG Who Exposed Supporter’s Fraud

Clear warning to anyone else who raises questions or stands in the way, wouldn't you say? Whether you are the head of a company (e.g. GM) or an IG.....

From Judicial Watch:

A government inspector general who has exposed widespread waste in taxpayer-financed community service groups has been fired by Barack Obama after finding that one of the president’s political supporters, a California mayor, misused federal funds.
In violation of a law established to keep the watchdogs independent and free of political pressure or interference, Obama has refused to explain why he got rid of the inspector general charged with investigating the government’s so-called national service programs. ...(more)

however, a key Obama ally says President Obama did not follow the law when he fired the IG.
Sen. Claire McCaskill better watch his back...

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Cub Camp

I've been at Cub Camp the last few days with my youngest. This was the first session, a tradition in our Pack because historically it has usually been the coolest (relatively speaking). As a result we have never gotten our Chili Pepper badge, received when one camps in 100 degree or higher weather. I was quite pleased (privately of course) that my older son never received this badge.

Unfortunately my youngest son has now qualified for this badge and did so on both days (and nights-long miserable, sweaty, no wind, nights) of the camp out.

Though tired and not really sure that I have gotten all the layers of salt scraped from my body, it was a grand time. I would do it again tomorrow. I'll be posting again soon.