Archive for November, 2003

Blog rolled by Coop

Randall has been recently blog rolled by Coop.  He made this great graphic that he wears as a badge of honour.   

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Why am I up here?

Why am I up here?
Last year I went through a very difficult time.  It started about the beginning of November and it really didn’t end until the end of the school year in April.  It peaked in the beginning of December and I had a slow climb to recovery after that.  I felt very anxious almost all the time.  That feeling is back and it really sucks because I thought I had put that part of my life behind me.  I feel beset with worries even though I really don’t have all that much to be worried about.  This time of year forces me to do some business accounting.  I really dislike accounting but because I worked through it successfully last year and I have a much better idea of what I am doing and I’m not sure if it is the source of my grief.  One thing I’m not going to do is put it off so it can nag me for 6 months. 

I think I’m falling in to an all too familiar trap.  I’m focused on success and not faithfulness.  That probably isn’t all of it but it is one area I’m asking God to work on while I’m up here at the cabin.   I take to much responsibility.  I think I am more important and more necessary than I really am.  When I see the dangers around me I feel burdened to deal with them as best I can.

Another part of the puzzle is that I have put off too many things and they tend to build up.  I think my mind can only handle so many things in the queue and after that things start to clutter up my mind.  I’ve always preferred simplicity and when things get cluttered they get complicated. 

I think another part of it is perspective.  Most of the time I’ve been up here has been very good.  I felt quite in tune with God as I walked through the forest with my camera this afternoon.  This afternoon it felt like all of the things that kept coming up in my mind were well off to the side and God was much closer.  I took some great pictures.  I’d upload them but I’m on dial up out here. 

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Seasons change quickly

Seasons change quickly

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The pitfalls of interpretation

The pitfalls of interpretation
Little Bear writes about something that has struck a cord with me.  She is frustrated because many of the people who send her email really don’t understand what she is writing.  It’s something that I have painfully observed with the feedback that I get on my blog.  The written word can be a very imprecise tool to communicate meaning.  The most common mistake people make is that they read the author’s words in their own context.  They surround the author’s words with their own experience instead of making an attempt to understand them from the author’s experience.  This takes time and effort.

I’ve had heard people who were upset at a particular author say something like when I read such and such this is what it meant to me”.    I don’t think this is fair to the author.  People are getting upset over something the author never intended to communicate.  People are missing a critical step in interpreting.  The first step is to understand what the words mean to the author.  This more we understand things like the author’s background, society, culture, history, and faith tradition the better able we will be to understand their words.   I’ve had some very frustrating experiences where people have begun to argue with me over the meaning of my own words.  It’s fair enough to point out how things could have been better worded, but I’ve had people reject my explanation and continue on with their initial interpretation. 

Once we establish what the author’s words mean to them then we can apply their meaning to our own context.  As I reflect on the difficulties of communicating with written words on blogs I wonder how this would reflect on our interpretation of scripture.  Most of the New Testament is words written from one person to another.  Peter commented on how people twist Paul’s words and they would have had a much better understanding of his context.  If we casually look at scripture would we not be just as prone to misinterpreting the words of Peter, Paul and John?  Almost 2000 years separates our context from the context of the New Testament authors. 

I feel it is necessary to understand an author’s context.  This is one of the reasons why I shy away from anonymous bloggers.  It is one of the reasons why I like reading blogs more than books.  I think anyone should blog anonymously if they want to.  There are a number of good reasons to do so.  The difficulty I have is that I feel handicapped when it comes to interpreting their words.

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Fear of right wing wackos

Fear of right wing wackos
Political commentator Mike Duffy summed the election with a great line.  I don’t remember the exact wording  but it was essentially “Fear of right wing wackos…propelled the NDP in to power”.

The election is over and my pick David Karwacki lost a tight race in his riding and his party was absolutely obliterated.  I think the NDP ran a very influential campaign which effectively demonized opposition leader Elwin Hermanson.  This fear pulled votes from the Liberal party to the NDP.  The popular vote shifted from the Liberals to the NDP when compared with the election 4 years ago.  Unlike 4 years ago the NDP had more of the popular vote than the Saskatchewan Party.

I’m disappointed that David didn’t win his own seat.  He probably should have focused on a the ridings he could win instead of running all across the province.  Hindsight is 20/20.  I think the Saskatchewan Party really needs to carefully reconsider its leadership.  Elwin doesn’t appeal to women and he doesn’t appeal to urban voters.  Any government is better with an effective opposition and we really haven’t had that.  Essentially the NDP used Elwin’s words against him and he was on the defensive from the beginning.  I really think this election was the Saskparty’s to lose, and they lost it.

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I voted!

I voted!
I asked lots of people for predictions on the outcome of the election.  Pretty much everyone predicted what thay had hoped for.  It seems pretty hard to be unbiased about these kind of things.  I think it really is to close to call. 

The polls close in 90 minutes.  To pass the time I’m watching Enterprise.  This episode is a combination of Titan AE and Memento.  The plot might be ripoff but it really doesn’t matter because Jolene Blalock is a babe!

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Life is hard for me right now

Life is hard for me right now
I haven’t been writing much lately.  A number of things have combined to shake me emotionally.  Instead of heading east to visit other bloggers I’m going to head to the cabin.  I feel disconnected from God and I need to reconnect.

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This inbreed has pulled out his banjo…

This inbreed has pulled out his banjo…
…and he’s playing a victory tune.  Mr. Troy Westood’s infamous comments about Saskatchewan fans seem to have backfired.  Our beloved Roughriders have vanquished the Bombers with the greatest of ease.  Kenton Keith proved to be the deciding factor.  In the end the Bombers will be just a minor stepping stone to the Grey Cup!  Bring on the Eskimos. 

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It's been a busy week

It’s been a busy week.
On Monday I got called in to the college.  Their internet access was down.  It didn’t look like anything on our network was causing the problem so I called in the local telco, Sasktel, to take care of it.  They came by and did some tests and couldn’t find anything wrong.  Eventually it turned out to be a virus on our network which was flooding our router with traffic.  On Wednesday I arrived at the college at 7:45 am.  I left Thursday at 9:30 AM.  It was a long day at work.

That night we had church.  I was ok because I had slept most of the day up until then.  We went to see a high profile member of the anti-Globalization movement speak about the migration of displaced people to different countries.  His lecture forced me to think about Canada’s restrictive immigration policies.  Canada currently allows about 300 000 people in each year, and I think it could easily be doubled. 

Afterwards we gathered in a restaurant for something to eat and drink.  The whole idea was Carla’s and I thought it was very good.  We were able to hear a voice we wouldn’t normally hear in church circles which tend to be politically conservative.  We were able to get out and mingle with other people.  I didn’t do much mingling though.

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Looking for Coop?

Looking for Coop?
Jordon is having a little problem with his domain name registration.  He does have an alternate address at Jordoncooper.sk.ca.

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