Okay Then

Let me make myself clear:

  1. I have no problem with the concept of patriotism, that is, love of one’s country. Am I a patriot? I guess not, but I’m certainly loyal to America. I don’t think, or at least don’t know, if we’re the absolute best nation in the world, but I’m glad I’m living here.
  2. Yes, if there were a draft, I’d fight for America. No, I do not intend to join the military as of now.
  3. WITH THAT SAID, I have nothing but the absolute highest respect and gratitude for our armed forces
  4. I also don’t think America is a church and I am not enamored with the liberal principles our country was founded upon.

None of those statements contradict any other statements.


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Maybe This is a Bad Idea

But I’m going to link to this with no comment. I think I’ve proven at this point that I absolutely am willing to have this discussion; I’m not responding at Mr. Wright’s blog because he’s made it very clear he finds the discussion offensive. Very well. But…

Japan is a nation. America is a church. If I stop believing in the rights of man and the rule of law, I am no longer an American in spirit, no matter if I legally am or no. If I bow the knee to a king, I am no longer a Virginian





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Cast List!

I’m the guy who’s murdered at the end of act 1.

I’ll take it!

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And so, a music break

Whenever I audition for a show, until I learn if I got in, or what part I got, it’s very hard for me to focus on anything else. This is true, of course, of anything, but the particular sort of tension involved in auditions and callbacks makes it – for me, at least – especially nerve-wracking.

Since I won’t be learning the result of my audition until Wednesday at the earliest, I’ll use my blog as an outlet, which I can do because none of you can stop me. The show I’m auditioning for is called “Curtains”, which I knew of in passing but didn’t know a whole lot about besides “It’s a backstage murder mystery” (which is an admittedly cool premise).

As it turns out, “Curtains” has some excellent music. Here’s its most famous song, “Show People”. David Hyde Pierce won a Tony for the lead:

Oddly, the best version of the show is from a high school. The choreography is no great shakes but the leads from NNHS are amazing. Here’s a fun ballad called “A Tough Act to Follow”. The guy playing Cioffi, who is the main character (Boston accent), is terrific (Nikki, the girl in the number, isn’t bad either):

But the real star of this show is the girl who plays Carmen, one of the main characters and the lead singer of “It’s a Business”. This girl is in high school!:

What a voice!

The show’s “award bait” song is a ballad called “I Miss the Music”. NNHS has a good version of this too (where do they find these guys?), but the best one I could find is here (skip to 1:21 to hear the real start of the song, then once you hit 4:28 skip ahead to 5:50 to get the reprise):

Probably the biggest setpiece of the show – even more than “Show People” – is “Thataway”, which comes from the show within a show. Once again NNHS has the best version of it, though it’s more for the singing, which is on point, than the choreography, which is meh (song starts 30 seconds in):

Georgia (lead singer) isn’t as good as the girl playing Carmen, but she’s pretty good. Note the lyrics, which are rather PG-13, especially when the guys start singing.

Anyway, the music ended up being better than I thought it would be, and it’s a generally fun show. I don’t know what role I’m getting but I’m pretty sure I’ll get in.

Wednesday though! Ugh. That’s a loooooooong wait…

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A Thought

One thing that might fool people if they hear all of the “debate” about submission and what it means and what mutual submission is and all that jazz is how people talk about how we need to “interpret” Paul. So for the first time in awhile I actually cracked open the Epistles and found myself in for a surprise.

The first thing I noticed: Paul is INCREDIBLY clear. He is probably the clearest writer I’ve read outside of C.S. Lewis. His points are always specific, he takes special care to name his audience, and he repeats himself several times for those sitting in the back. Paul is actually clearer than Christ is in the Gospels (which makes sense – Paul is writing the letters himself, but we’re getting secondhand recordings of the sermons and sayings of Christ. One of the reasons Paul’s letters are in the Bible is to form a consistent theology out of the solid backbone Christ gave us).

This idea that the letters of Paul are some great puzzle that needs to be teased out is a very modern one generally driven by people who really don’t want to follow the teachings of St. Paul.

(As for callbacks, I won’t get results until “probably Wednesday, sometime next week”, which is EXTREMELY annoying, but what can you do? My best guess is that I’ll end up with a minor role, which is fine by me.)

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I Will Mention…

Do wish me luck. I just got a callback for a musical (“Curtains”, which I mentioned a couple of posts ago).

I’ve talked about my love of theatre in the past, but it’s very hard to explain it to someone who doesn’t “get it”. To someone who does, no explanation is necessary. It’s an experience that nothing else in the world can match. Sports comes the closest, but even that isn’t quite the same.

I am actually more nervous than I thought I’d be about this show, and very much want to get in.


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An Excellent Article

I have no clue who Ed Setzer is. But he wrote an excellent article, titled “Call yourself a Christian? Start talking about Jesus Christ.”:

“Preach the gospel at all times; if necessary, use words,” Saint Francis of Assisi is supposed to have said.

The aphorism, often quoted, expresses a well-meaning viewpoint of many Christians today. They are concerned that we’ve been too loud, demanding and angry. Now, they say, we need to show the gospel by our lives.

It’s a good sentiment, and I certainly agree that we need to demonstrate the gospel change in our lives by caring for others. But there are two problems with the Assisi quote.

First, he never said it.

Second, it’s really bad theology.

You see, using that statement is a bit like saying, “Feed the hungry at all times; if necessary, use food.” For Christians, the gospel is good news — it’s what the word literally means. For evangelicals, our name speaks of the commitment to evangelism that defines us. The good news needs to be told.

Yet, Christians, evangelicals included, seem to love evangelism, as long as someone else is doing it. It’s time for all of us to start preaching our good news again.

Christianity is a missionary faith

It’s essential to understand that, regardless of our personal comfort level, we are called to share our faith because Christianity is a missionary faith. Despite the change in our culture and the way our faith is regarded, Christians are commanded to tell people about Jesus. In Matthew 4:19, Jesus called fishermen as his first disciples and told them he would make them “fishers of men.”

His disciples are still called to be fishers of men.

Even in our multi-faith environment, this calling should not be offensive to those of other faiths or no faith at all. Evangelism does not mean coercion. We can and should respect each other and strive for tolerance across varying beliefs, but that does not require pretending those differences do not exist. One of the core beliefs of Christianity is that Christianity should be propagated.

Go ahead and read the whole thing. Good work, Mr. Setzer.

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