If…

I was telling some brothers of mine earlier this week about how I had been playing the “What if?” game with myself.  It is a dangerous game to play if you let yourself play it for too long.  Then today I stumbled upon this video of Dennis Hopper reciting a poem called “If” by Ruyard Kipling and thought it was great.  A few of the lines in here kind of hit close to home with me right now in life.  Hope it does the same for you.

…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.)

…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?