Monday, February 25, 2008

Everything I've Ever Done

Hi, PDX!

People have become so public about themselves that I'm sure there are already several children well on their way. To what? To a completely documented life. Fully recorded and available for download and public viewing. Every sleeping and waking hour, including showers and bathroom visits.

Far fetched? Check the news item on p. C9 of the 2/25/08 "Oregonian" newspaper. A company called Emotiv Systems Inc. will be selling the $299 EPOC neuro-headset later this year. It will allow the wearer to play video games with his head, hands-free. Emotiv will work with IBM to explore applications beyond video gaming to expand the "brain computer interface".

Think about that. Really think about that. While you still can. On your own.

Mary Pipher's 1996 book The Shelter of Each Other--Rebuilding our Families observes that our children are being "raised by appliances." And Joshua Meyrowitz wrote that "We are becoming a nation of neither children nor adults. Rather we exist in some age zone between childhood and adulthood. We're a nation of adolescents--preoccupied with ourselves, sexualized, moody and impulsive, seeking freedom without responsibility."

Agree or disagree, that describes many K-3 students my wife works (or attempts to work) with in school--and by implication their parents as well. Recently a girl missed school to participate in a national cheerleading competition in Dallas, TX.

National competitions for third-graders? Isn't that for later in life? Isn't childhood for being a kid? Aren't there other things that need to go on first, most importantly developing the brain and then developing relationship and social skills?

Parents, do you know where your children are? Parents, do you know where you are? Putting on the ol' neuro-headset will be so much easier than parenting. Will you be able to take yours off long enough to know what's in your child's neuro-headset? Think about it while you still can.


John chapter 4. Jesus and the Samaritan woman have a conversation that breaks all the rules. It goes outside all gender, class and religious bounds. "Come see a man that told me everything I've ever done," says the woman. Full-life video, or what?

Read the story. I doubt the conversation spanning a few minutes was a lifetime play-by-play. I doubt that Jesus dumped out things like: "Remember that time when you were cooking oatmeal for your third husband who had been pretty mean to you the night before? Remember, Samaritan woman, how you noticed a bug in the oatmeal and were going to remove it but then thought, 'What the heck?'"

No, I think "he told me everything I've ever done" means that Jesus got to the focal point of the brokenness and pain in her life. The point of the encounter was not "This is what is wrong with you." Instead it was, "Tell me where it hurts." He offered her living water in a conversation completely out of bounds as people thought of them.

And the gist of the conversation was, "OK, that's done. Now, how do we see you not as a slave to your past but as a person who still has a future? How do we see what was broken as something that can be and is being healed?"

If Jesus sat down next to you and told you everything you've ever done, what would your story be? War? Abuse? Addiction? Depression? Broken relationships? All of the above? Where does it hurt?

Sipped any living water lately?


Pastor Roger

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