Bob and Weave

Musings of an impostor. Welcome to the masquerade.

The Weekend Is Here 10-6-16

Posted by flyingbk on 10/07/2016

1. Let’s start on a heavier note: Tullian Tchividjian recently penned a piece titled The Freedom of Losing It All over at expastors.com. (Yes, such a site exists; I just found out myself and I’m digging its mission.) Tchividjian was a well-known pastor who lost his marriage and his job and calling last summer. I enjoyed his book One Way Love: Inexhaustible Grace for an Exhausted World and quoted him liberally in my own sermons. I’m always admired him as a champion of God’s free and prodigious grace.

The details of his divorce and having to step down from his church are saddening. (Perhaps even more sad are Christians who enjoy piling on a man’s failures.) He writes about how he contemplated suicide. But in an awkward sense, he’s the perfect guy to write the piece linked above because of the main message he preached. Here are a couple quotes:

I was known for saying that God loves bad people because bad people are all that there are. So I knew I was bad. I just didn’t know I was THAT bad.
The truth is, though, that we are very good lawyers when it comes to our own mistakes, but very good judges when it comes to the mistakes of others.

[God] is the light at the end of your dark tunnel. And He’s not going anywhere. Others may leave, but He will stay. As Winston Churchill famously said, “When you’re going through hell, keep walking.”

We only truly grasp the gospel when we learn to judge only ourselves and lawyer up on behalf of the ones we consider the least of these.

2. Speaking of Churchill, I’m still working through Candice Millard’s latest. I’m about to get into the meat of the book where Churchill is now a prisoner of war and must figure out a way to escape. Should be good.

A new month means Amazon releases its best books of the month. Each month can be hit or miss. But the ones for October look quite enticing; first on my list is the new novel by Maria Semple. I loved her previous novel, Where’d You Go, Bernadette. The former writer for Arrested Development (certainly atop the pantheon of great TV comedies, but let’s not talk about the Netflix season…) has a zany writing style that cracks me up.

A favorite podcast of mine, The Mortification of Spin (Carl Trueman is on my list of heroes), just did an episode titled Reader’s Block. If you’ve been struggling to read while knowing that you ought to, give it a listen and heed their advice. It’s only about 20 minutes long.

My first piece of advice would be to go and buy the Kindle Paperwhite, which is only $89.99 for Amazon Prime members. Let me be clear: This is a freakin’ amazing deal for a freakin’ amazing e-reader. Or if you have more money to burn, get the Kindle Voyage, which is only $149.99. Of course, I’m the sucker who always buys Kindles at full price when they first come out. (I have both the Voyage and Paperwhite; I’m a total Kindle fanboy.)

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Due to Wednesday’s heartbreaking loss, I will have more time and emotional energy to read:

3. Finally, a couple bloggers recently took time to write about Christians and their video games. Tim Challies began the conversation, and Drew Dixon continued it. If you’re someone who wants to defend your gaming habit (I’m not a gamer, but it’s more because I know that my obsessive personality is a bad fit for it), those two entries will provide ammo.

Reading about video games reminded me of what I’ve read before regarding the game That Dragon, Cancer. I used this game as a sermon illustration once. Here’s what I said:

Ryan and Amy Green, a Christian couple from Colorado, created a video game. The name of the game is “That Dragon, Cancer.” It’s a game people are calling the most profound video game ever.

This game was being created as their son Joel was undergoing treatment for brain cancer. He was diagnosed at 12 months old, and while he was 4 years old, the Greens had hoped that their son would survive. So this game was created with him as the main subject, and the hope was, the game would have a happy ending. That dragon, cancer, would be slain. And then in that sense, it would be like most video games: defeat a boss, complete levels, until you win.

But Joel didn’t make it. He died while they were still working on the game. He died 2 years ago at the age of 5.

So at the end of this game, you enter a cathedral and the lights are going out. You try to solve a puzzle. You try to push certain organ keys, light candles, hoping that through this solving, Joel would survive.

But nothing works. The lights go out. A final prayer is spoken, and Joel is dead.

After that, in the final scene of the game, you cross a lake and you see Joel. And he’s happy. You blow bubbles and he laughs. He shows you his dog, and his favorite food: pancakes. That’s how the game ends.

The Green family wanted to show that even in devastation, there is hope. Even in tragedy and death, there can be joy.

They even told everyone on the game’s release date this past January, to celebrate… by eating pancakes.

that-dragon-cancer-has-not-yet-seen-a-single-dollar-from-sales-145893661224

And in researching for this blog post, I just read that this game is now available on the iPhone and iPad. Wow, look what happens when I blog! OK, I’m definitely gonna check it out. Have a great weekend everyone!

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