All cooks are hypocrites!

I have heard it time and time again that many people do not like Christians because they are all hypocrites. Christians say one thing (love all people) but then do another (picket funerals). Christians say they forgive people but then they go ahead and hold grudges forever. So many people have decided that they give up being Christian because of this hypocritical behavior that is observed in a select few.

Whelp if that is the case then you might just want to give up cooking.

This little gem of a business will offer you dirty dishes alongside the food you ordered for authenticity sake. 

That is right. For those of us who want the joy of cooking without actually cooking but still ensuring others believe you cook - you too can have dirty dishes delivered to your home to give the impression that you slaved over the meal.

The thing is, no one is going to look at this and say, "well, I know that some people will say they cook but actually don't therefor I will give up cooking because all cooks are hypocrites." This is silly.

Christians are not hypocritical - human beings are hypocritical. It just turns out that all Christians are human.

What is our mole

My wife and I have radically different tastes in movies.  Most of the time we end up watching a period piece about the Tutor family in England, because that is what she likes, and I do not really care.  Every now and again, Estee will select a couple of movies she thinks that I will like and then she allows me to pick one.  It really is a great gesture and I am thankful.  The other day we use this process to "decide" to watch Robin Hood: Men in Tights.  Well, we both watch half of it and then remember how much funnier it was when we were younger.

Here is one of the scenes in the movie which I just love, and while the quality is bad, you get the point.

If you do not know, the king's mole moves around his face each scene.  It is classic.

It got me thinking about what is the mole on the church that is obvious to everyone else, but we do not have a clue about?

From a clergy position, I can give answers which I think are spot on, but I am sure that I am not even close to correct answers.  I say things like - poor theology or ineffective leaders.  But I just am not sure that is what others see as the mole in our churches.

So I ask, what is the mole of the UMC?  What do others see about the church that we do not know about?

An amazing story I cannot recall if I have shared

Jo is a friend of mine and she wrote about what happened to her at the movies over the holiday last year. With Harry Potter now in the theater and the Thanksgiving holiday near, I just share this story with you as a warning to all people - be careful what you ask for at the movie theater...

I am not sure if she will keep her blog up forever, so in addition to posting the link, I also want to cut and paste the story into this post so that I can have it forever (I hope you do not mind Jo!)

Thursday, January 8, 2009

The Rest of the World Must Be Right Some of the Time

My mother was a very strong, brilliant, opinionated person. Often, when she would get on a soapbox about something, she would say to herself (and me), "But the rest of the world must be right some of the time." I never thought she really believed that. I still think she thought she was right all of the time and rest of the world was wrong. But don't we all think that? Why would we continue to stand by a thought or deed if we thought we were wrong? Of course we think we are right or we would change what we think.

I had an experience Christmas Eve of which I can't let go and I keep asking myself and those unfortunate enough to have to listen to me if the rest of the world is right this time and if not, what can I (and we all) do to avoid situations like this. So maybe if I put it out here in blogsville I can let go of it and quit annoying my family and friends with this story.

My family went to the movies on Christmas Eve. We rarely go the movies as a family and I had great hopes of it being a special family time. We could talk about the movie and what fun we had over hot cocoa and it would become a Christmas Eve tradition. Okay, I have a very low bar for meaningful family experience.

As we were getting our popcorn, the young woman serving us was quite grumpy. Not overtly rude, it was just clear she did not want to be there. As she gave me my drink I smiled and said, very sincerely, "Thanks for working on Christmas Eve, we appreciate you being here so we can have a family outing." I try, during the Christmas season or when I shop late at night, to express appreciation to retailers and service people because I've been in their shoes and know it is no fun.

Well, she just looked at me, which is fine, but the young man beside her snottily said, "It's Hanukah, too, you know." Now I don't know if he was Jewish or if he was missing some important tribal gathering to get paid minimum wage at the movie theater, but I took a deep breath, decided his motives didn't matter and said, again very sincerely, "You're right. I'm sorry I didn't mention that. Thank you for working during Hanukah."

Now during the exchange I had been handed all my movie snacks. One of which was a pickle juice pop. For those of you unfamiliar with this delicacy, it is what the name implies, frozen pickle juice in a little plastic cup to be eaten like ice cream. Yummmmmm! I asked for a spoon. They had no spoons. I looked at the cup and once again very nicely and sincerely said, "Oh, well, maybe you should have told me that before I paid for it. How do I eat it?"

A third young person working behind the counter turned around, looked me straight in the eye, and said, "Suck On It!"

My question to you, gentle readers, is "What should my response have been?" Do we live in a world where teenagers who are being paid to do a job should be allowed to treat paying customers like this? Was my mistake trying to be overly nice in the first place? What can we, as a society, do to reintroduce civility and manners into our little corners of the world?

This is not a rhetorical question. I truly am asking you what I should have done. I won't bother you with what I did, it wasn't particularly interesting or effective. Please let me know your thoughts in case, heaven forbid, I should be presented with a simular dilemma again. Let me know if this was, indeed, one of the times when the rest of the world was right.