…i know one church i won’t be going to…

In my opinion, you will either like this book or you won’t.  I think I myself fall on the the like it side of the coin.

I liked this book because it tells a story and the story is one of a kid who was trying to figure out and follow Jesus the best that he knew how, but was just being taught how to in a whacked out and weird way.

The book takes you on a nostalgic walk through Matthew’s past.  It starts around the time that his family begins going to a fundamentalist church when he was a child and takes you up to present day.  He is extremely honest about what he experienced at this particular church and how it affected him.

One of the things that caught me off guard about the way that he wrote is that if you didn’t read the book carefully you could think that every fundamentalist church out there was this way.  While that possibility might exist, it doesn’t necessarily have to be true.  I’m sure that there are some crazy fundamentalists out there along with some really great fundamentalists.

He gives the names of some of the people in his past and gets to the point where he is very telling about them and honest about his opinion of them.  The only caution that I would give is that just because you feel a certain way about a situation or people doesn’t mean that you should write all your thoughts down because it may not be what builds up the church.  Turner might be guilty of that from time to time in the book.

But all in all I enjoyed it and don’t regret reading it.  If you have time, you should too.

(I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.)

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…my heart breaks…

I love my new job.  I work at a convenience store/gas station chain called Quik Trip.  It is only in about 9 cities, but it is one of the best companies to work for according to Forbes 500 list.

The pace of working at a store like this is crazy, especially for our store which is apparently one of the busiest stores of 75 that Kansas City has.  The good part though about the pace is that shifts just fly by.  Today was a 6 hour shift and it felt like 2.  It is crazy how nice that is when other other jobs have seemed to drag by.

A couple of the things that we sell at QT are cigarettes and lottery tickets.  Although these two things don’t necessarily break my heart, the people who buy them do.  I’ve seen young pregnant soon-to-be moms buy cigarettes and claim that it won’t hurt the baby till 6 months old in utero.

I know this type of thing takes place is all cities, but it is still hard to watch happen.  Legally if she is over 18 and has money than I need to sell her the cigarettes.  But that child inside is hurting because of her selfishness.  That breaks my heart.

The other thing is lottery tickets.  I think Dave Ramsey said in Financial Peace University that 80% of lottery ticket stations are in areas that are stricken with poverty, and that 90% of sales take place from people who are below the poverty line.  (Looks like someone is playing dirty.)

I’ve had people walk in and buy $4 worth of food on Food Stamps, and then turn around and spend 40 some on lottery tickets.  Are you kidding me?  Now I’m not trying to say that these people aren’t legitimately in the position to receive food stamps, but if you are going to spend 10 times as much on the lottery, then there are some priorities you have that are way out of whack!

It is just sad to see things like that take place.  It is also hard not to pity them and pretend that I am better than they are.  And it is hard to not to judge them and think that there aren’t things that I waste my money on.  I just have to watch it happen, take it in, and hope the situation will change.

What have you seen that has broken your heart lately?

…your word…

Your word.  Giving your word is an interesting thing.  It can sometimes be the very thing that makes a situation easy, or it can also be the thing that makes it difficult.

Last Thursday morning I had an interview with Quik Trip Convenience Stores.  I got there, took the prelim tests, filled out some more paper work, and then went in for the interview.  It was a piece of cake, and afterwards I was offered the job and asked to start orientation on Monday afternoon.

Now you’ve got to understand that this wasn’t the only application that I picked up and turned in.  I had applied to the KC Public Library, Costco, Starbucks, another little coffee shop, and a cigar shop called Fidels (which a truckload of other places in mind).

On Friday morning I got a call from Fidels asking me if I might be interested essentially in being full time there.  But I had already given my word to QT.  Thus making the situation difficult.

The quick and short of it is that I would love to work for such a unique and eclectic place like Fidels, but I did give my word to QT.  They have benefits and in time they pay pretty well to those who stay with them.  They were the first ones to offer me employment and so I had to go with them.  I still would like to connect with Fidels somehow, but QT got ahold of me first.

I’m excited about what all could happen at QT because it is going to be different from every other job that I’ve done.  I think there are also going to be a lot of ministry opportunities there, along with chances for promotions.

All that to say, sometimes your word makes things easy, and sometimes it makes things hard.  But when you give your word – it is yours.  And your word is only as good as you make it.  I gave my word to Quik Trip and I’m going to make sure it means something.

What about you?  What have you given your word to?