Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Recapturing the wonder

Nick wrote after the last post, "I hope to recapture more wonder this Christmas." I suspect that's a common yearning.

We see wonder in the eyes of children as they experience the magic of Santa's bounty. We can imagine the quiet wonder of Mary as she gazed into the eyes of her newborn son or the awed wonder of shepherds hearing "Glory to God in the highest." If we're lucky, we remember our own times of wonder, when grace shook us from complacent comfort and the impossible became real.

So we leave the door open for wonder. We invite it with candlelit services and familiar carols, with sparkling lights and piles of presents. And still it comes where and when we least expect it. In a stable, not an inn. In a baby, not a king.

I wrote a column published Dec. 23, 1987, about wonder taking me by surprise. Here's that story again:

A day with a difference

Eyes opened slowly, reluctantly in the gray light of a winter morning. Another day. Another choice: to hop out of bed and get ready for work or to snuggle deeper into the electric blanket. I rolled over, cherishing the warmth, hiding in the pillow’s soft darkness. Just a few minutes more. . . .

Another day. I began to take a sluggish inventory of the day’s schedule: Nothing planned except work. I ought to be at the newsroom by about 2 p.m. and would be lucky to leave by midnight. Same as always. Another day.

Waking has never come easily to me, but this day seemed harder than most. Hadn’t I been out late the night before? A melody drifted through my mind, picking up words along the way. Silent night, holy night…

Oh. That’s right. Last night I had gone to a midnight Christmas Eve service - not at my church, though; that service started too early for me to get there from work. This church was not even of the same denomination, but the liturgy was lovely, the music uplifting. Afterwards I lit a candle and listened to a recording of Benjamin Britten’s "Ceremony of Carols," as I do every Christmas Eve.

Eyes opened again, more conscious this time. Christmas Eve. That meant today must be Christmas.

The awareness sank into my mind with a dull thud. So it's Christmas. Just another day, except that all the restaurants are closed.

I still had to work, which meant I couldn’t drive four hours to be with my family. News doesn’t stop for holidays; even if it does, people expect a paper full of stories anyway. I had worked every Christmas since leaving college.

No relatives lived anywhere near. No one was coming to visit. I hadn’t bothered to decorate for the holidays; it hardly seemed worth the effort.

Faint noises came from the living room. My roommate Julie was already up, of course. She had to work today, too, but she didn’t seem bothered by it. Of course, she was Jewish. Christmas to her was … well, just another day. Just like for me. Only I wanted it to be so much more.

I pulled the covers higher, still not eager to face the day, but my cats were jumping onto the bed and yowling, ready for breakfast. They didn’t care what day it was, but they cared greatly if their food was late. With a sigh, I rose, threw on a robe and stumbled out of my bedroom … into Christmas.

My largest houseplant, bedecked with brightly colored bows, was surrounded by a multitude of small, cheerfully wrapped packages. Julie sat at one side, holding out a cup of hot, spiced tea. "Merry Christmas!" she said.

And it was.

Did she realize how totally shocked and delighted I was, how full of wonder? I don’t remember being so excited since Santa’s mystique faded. But Mr. Claus, apparently, was alive and well -- and still had a few tricks up his red sleeve.

Slowly, savoring the moment, I unwrapped the presents. They were small, inexpensive items, but I felt richer than kings. Not even the cats were forgotten; there were little treats just for them, although they were content lazily attacking stray ribbons.

Driving to work a few hours later, I joyfully sang carols at full voice. The day, I noticed, was much brighter. The sun had appeared. Or had it been out all along?

Julie’s gift outlasted that Christmas of a few years ago, because what she gave was not only one happy morning but an enduring memory. And not only a memory, but a hopeful awareness that glorious surprises lie in wait around every dark corner of my life. And not only a memory, but a calling to reach out in small ways to the people around me -- to make their days special and full of love.

When I am asked now about my favorite yuletide ever, I don’t think of the holidays of my childhood, however full of family fun and special gifts. I think of a gray winter morning that started out as just another day -- but through the kindness of a friend became truly Christmas.

25 comments:

Rev. Mike said...

Jane, I fear that I'm about to go where angels fear to tread. I certainly don't want to make any of the other readers fussy either. Please recognize that I have two daughters, 9 and 12, and seeing them at Christmas time can make me just as sentimental and awestruck as anyone else. Unlike my own father, I was there when both of them were born, so I know what it is to be there, looking into their eyes in their point of greatest vulnerability.

Nonetheless, I find myself asking this year if the reason we become so sentimental about Christmas is that it poses no threat to us or to anyone's order of the world. You say early on, "In a baby, not a king," but is this baby not a king, the ultimate both/and?

I read a blog post recently that suggested that rather than pushing the themes of "Don't forget the Christ in Christmas" and "Jesus is the reason for the season," maybe Christians need to let go of Christmas in the hope that perhaps we might yet recapture Easter. I find myself wondering if the reason we are able to sentimentalize Christmas is that a baby in a manger is no threat to anyone today. Two thousand plus years later, he's not even a threat to Herod anymore. The grown man, crucified and resurrected, on the other hand, demands a response. I think that C. S. Lewis tried to say that in Mere Christianity when he suggested that we don't get to pick and choose what we want with the grown man. He calls us either to take up our own cross and follow, or to reject the call and go our own way. That is a huge threat to every conceivable point of allegiance.

Again, I love the feeling of Christmas as much as anyone, but does it lead me in a direction contrary to which I need to go? Is there not a reason why Advent was and remains a penitential season on the liturgical calendar?

Anonymous said...

Rev. Mike, Easter is the biggest Christian holiday anyway. It is way above Christmas.

Easter is more interesting however. I've wondered for a long time would any Christian (given the opportunity) save Jesus (and why)? I am also wondering if no one else would sacrifice Jesus (for our sins), would you take the task upon yourself and do it on your own (and why)?

Sincerely,
Rev. Iztok

Nick said...

Thank you Jane for the mention. I do agree with what Rev. Mike has said in a large part, but with a disagreement. Once the incarnation is a reality, the resurrection does fit in nicely. From the perspective of soteriology, Easter is more important. Without the resurrection, there is no salvation. If Christ has not been raised, we above all men are to be pitied.

But I shall speak on wonder for now. I recently wrote an article on this and I can put it up if it is alright or at least a link to it. However, wonder consists in recognizing things as they are and not taking them for granted. I should have wonder that my eyes open every morning. G.K. Chesterton said "If my children thank Santa Claus for putting candy in their stockings, ought I not to thank God for putting two feet in mine?"

Look at the colors that you see. They did not have to be there. Listen to music. It did not have to be there. Look at a child any time of year and see how they eagerly want to explore the world around them and learn all they can.

I consider boredom one of the worst problems facing Christianity today, and I am just as guilty of it many times on the job. Why be bored when I can contemplate the wonder of the Trinity for instance? It is a sad state of affairs when in our minds, even God has often lost his wonder.

I do plan to go back home for Christmas and have a Christmas like I've never had before. Do I plan on getting a lot of stuff? Doesn't really matter. I have a few things I'd like to get, but I won't be scornful if I don't. Will I be able to spend much time? Nope. I gotta get back and get to work the next day. I will go though and see my family and be reminded that they let me come here with their full support and are counting on me to make a difference.

Christmas is the time that changes everything. The Word did become Flesh. Read those words in John 1:14 over and over. Consider them. The heavenly came down and took on the nature of the Earthly.

Merry Christmas everyone.

Danbo020759 said...

"What wonder?" some would say. My mom always told me, "Keep it simple, son."

God so loved the world, that in the fullness of time He sent His only begotten Son. He became a man, like us in all ways save sin. He came into the world in obscurity, in poverty and in humility. He espoused the teaching of placing oneself last so that one may be considered among the first of His Father's kingdom. At the appointed time, He laid down His (human) life for us (it was not taken, it was laid down) for the remission of sins. By doing so, He destroyed death and conquered sin and purchased for us the rewards of eternal life.

Now if that's not a wonder, I wonder what can be!!! You couldn't write a movie better than that.

D.J. said...

Mike,

I think you make some very insightful points - we cannot disconnect Christmas from Resurrection Day (I really dislike the term 'Easter'). The same Christ who was born in Bethlehem died to take our sin and condemnation away.

Iztok,

I'd like to point you to Dan's point that no one took Christ's life, he laid it down of his own accord. God is sovereign over all things, human actions among them (though we still carry full responsibility for the decisions we freely make), and thus your repeated question of "would you sacrifice Jesus if no one else would" just sounds silly to the serious Christian who trusts that all events, including the crucifixion, have been ordained by God exactly as they have happened.

Dan,

You make the point I often stress to my students - as we constantly contemplate "the old, old, story," may we never let "familiar" become "mundane."

Soli Deo Gloria

Danbo020759 said...

D.J. wrote, "You make the point I often stress to my students - as we constantly contemplate "the old, old, story," may we never let "familiar" become "mundane.""

"Amen," I say, D.J. "Amen!"

Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" was beautifully put to the screen in 1951's "Scrooge" starring Alistair Sim. In it, the Spirit of Christmas Present states, "Mortal! We Spirits of Christmas do not live only one day of our year. We live the whole three-hundred and sixty-five. So is it true of the Child born in Bethlehem. He does not live in men's hearts one day of the year, but in all days of the year. You have chosen not to seek Him in your heart. Therefore, you will come with me and seek Him in the hearts of men of good will."

I pray that those who don't see the "need" for a "god of the gaps" or a "big daddy of the skies" may one day come to know Him, perhaps first in the "hearts of men of good will."

A Blessed Christmas to all!

Anonymous said...

"all events, including the crucifixion, have been ordained by God exactly as they have happened."

So it was all pre-staged and no result of any free will? I get it now!

So God sacrificed (well not really as he knew he can't kill him really) his son to himself. It was all a fake since both God and Jesus knew this wasn't really a death and end of things, perhaps just a bad weekend.

Come to think from this perspective, many mothers and fathers make bigger sacrifice for us when sending their daughters and sons to serve our country in places like Afghanistan and Iraq. They know that their kids might not come back alive while God knew that this wasn't anything more then a staged show with Jesus.

Makes perfect sense now.

Sincerely,
Iztok

Also, no-one answered if they would save Jesus given the opportunity, I guess that is a no. (My morals would tell me to save innocent person.)

Danbo020759 said...
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Danbo020759 said...

Iztok, your anger leads you down the wrong path every time.

What I think D.J. meant by ordained was that God knew what was to happen. In the same way a mother knows that a 2-year old child, if left alone, will eat a cake they are told not to, God knew what His Son would experience. The Old Testament is filled with prophecies of Christ's tribulations.

Ah, the old "well, if I was Jesus I wouldn't mind dying on the cross either, knowing what was waiting for me in Heaven" argument!

Well, isn't that the point, Iztok? We do know what awaits us in Heaven. We should be just as willing to die for Christ as He was to die for us. That's what makes us brothers. But, alas, we are sinful where Jesus was/is not. Sacrifice my life for Jesus? You bet I would! As St. Peter said (paraphrased), "Even if they kill me I will not deny you!"

But then what happened? Bam! Sin got the better of St. Peter, who thrice denied Christ. Would the same happen to me? To D.J? We pray not, but only God knows the answer (as does the mother of the 2-year-old child).

As for Iraq and Afghanistan, you miss the point again. Death, especially death of the young, is to be mourned -- but only from the vantage point of our own human (mortal) condition. We miss them. And this life on earth is, indeed, a bad weekend compared to the Eternal Kingdom of God. The mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers of our fallen heroes in Iraq and in Afghanistan mourn now, but they will be reunited with their loved ones in Heaven, where "death is no more," and "every tear will be wiped away."

Shame on you for attempting to drag politics into the discussion.

Nick said...

"all events, including the crucifixion, have been ordained by God exactly as they have happened."

Iztok: So it was all pre-staged and no result of any free will? I get it now!

Me: I see this really as phenomenal language at this point. I don't have a full reconciliation yet between sovereignty and free-will. Who does? (Tis also a problem for the atheist though except what's sovereign in this case is matter.) I think it simply means that God saw it would happen and allowed it to happen.

Iztok: So God sacrificed (well not really as he knew he can't kill him really) his son to himself. It was all a fake since both God and Jesus knew this wasn't really a death and end of things, perhaps just a bad weekend.

Me: Not at all. In the priestly system, the sacrifice was given to God and when it was given to God, God could do what he wanted with it. What did Jesus do? He was the one who was offering the sacrifice and the sacrifice was himself.

Now we may think this is a small price to pay, but I don't think so. This is something that is eternal. I believe God is in the eternal and experiences all points of time as an eternal now. God is at the point of creation and the point of the new creation right now for instance. I believe the crucifixion has eternal effects and the Son of God taking sin on himself is no light matter.

Iztok: Come to think from this perspective, many mothers and fathers make bigger sacrifice for us when sending their daughters and sons to serve our country in places like Afghanistan and Iraq. They know that their kids might not come back alive while God knew that this wasn't anything more then a staged show with Jesus.

Makes perfect sense now.

Sincerely,
Iztok

Me: Not at all. The scars that we have will be removed as we are finite creatures and do not experience time as eternity. Whatever loss we supposedly suffer will turn out to be gain. For the Christian, death is the big joke. If it leaves us here, great! We get to serve! If it takes us, great! We're in the presence of Christ.

Iztok: Also, no-one answered if they would save Jesus given the opportunity, I guess that is a no. (My morals would tell me to save innocent person.)

Me: First off, you need to realize that the ANE culture was an honor/shame society.

Secondly, there's a squadron of Roman guards there and the Jewish leadership was out in full-force. Got any idea how a peasant might get past all of them?

Danbo020759 said...
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Danbo020759 said...

Nick brings to mind a very interesting theory which I have held as highly probable for many years; that God exists in the infinity of times. He exists -- simultaneously -- in every moment of the past, present and future.

This is difficult to comprehend as we are beings existing in time itself, but God exists outside of time -- he is not subject to its law (quite the opposite; all things are subject to God). Just chew on what it means to "live forever" for just a few seconds. The term "forever" is unfathomable due to the fact that we are limited to "four-dimensional" thinking here on Earth.

This would explain how God knows what did happen, what is happening and what will happen. The concept is an awesome thing to contemplate. Just another wonder to discover this Christmas and every day thereafter.

D.J. said...

Just to clarify my earlier comment...

I beleive that God has ordained (not allowed, not "knew what would happen ahead of time") all things to be exactly as they are. He is sovereign over all things, human actions among them (Proverbs 21:1). Yet simultaneously, we are responsible for every decision we freely make. How these two realities can both simultaneously be, I cannot say, but Scripture paints us a picture of both being true and thus I embrace both truths in tension yet in unity. For a good example of this, look carefully at Joseph's words in Genesis 50:20...

"As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today."

He is speaking of the deplorable, sinful act of his brothers selling him into slavery. He says that they meant it for evil (they freely did what they did because they wanted to do it from the evil intentions of their hearts), but God meant it for good (notice God meant it, he intended it, he ordained that it be - he is described as active here, not passive, in control of the entire situation, yet he ordained it for good, and the sinful responsibility falls sqarely on the shoulders of the brothers).

The whole sovereignty/free-will debate is an interesting one, but probably not appropriate for this post. Maybe we'll have it later, but for now I'll refrain from commenting on it further and wish all, from Calvin to Arminius, a Merry Christmas.

Iztok, the way you twisted my words ("pre-staged," disregarding my clarifying comments on human freedom and responsibility) says to me that you are looking for caricatures and arguments. Frankly, I'm interested in neither right now. I love theological debate (as anyone who has followed this blog will know), but it is often a temptation for me to boil the gospel down in my mind to academic realities, fodder for debates, and abstract "truth." The reality is that the God I argue for logically with Iztok has saved my soul from sin through his incarnation, sinless live, substitutionary death, and bodily resurrection. That's a wonder I need to recapture on a daily basis. This is just me, but the best way for me to do that right now is to wish you all a Merry Christmas and sit this one out.

Soli Deo Gloria

Danbo020759 said...

D.J., your analysis of Joseph and his brothers highlights a very important (but equally difficult to come to grips with) teaching of the Catholic Church -- from every evil act of man God can and does extract a goodness.

We may not know what it is, we may not live (here on Earth) to see it, but we believe it.

Rev. Mike said...

Iztok, you ask whether any of us would save Jesus if we had the chance, and I've resisted responding because I wasn't sure how to. As you can tell from some of the other responses you've received, within an orthodox Christian theological framework, that question does not make any sense. Which is not to say it's a bad question--there is no particular reason why the conversation should be limited to an orthodox Christian theological framework.

Unfortunately, the question you've asked is unanswerable in much the same manner as the familiar question if God is all-powerful, could God make a rock so heavy even God couldn't lift it. The inevitable answer is yes, but why would God want to do something that stupid? What would be the point?

Your question, so framed, does not appear to presuppose either the incarnation or there being any purpose for the incarnation. Why would God, having set the sacrifice of Jesus as a substitutionary atonement for the sin of the world as the purpose of the incarnation, allow someone to defeat that very purpose for which Jesus by standing by while that purpose was rendered null and void?

So, let's leave that out of this and take another run at your question from a different angle. Would I, given the opportunity, save Jesus and why? Unfortunately, again, you ask me to presuppose a Jesus who is different from the Jesus of the biblical narrative. That Jesus required no "saving," so again, I find you asking me to answer a question that requires me to invent a Jesus who never existed.

The only example to which one can point within that narrative is that of Peter, who, when he has his first opportunity to "save" Jesus, gets soundly rebuked for his effort in the garden of Gethsemane. Later, outside the house of Caiaphas, Peter goes as far as to deny Jesus three times. If Peter can be seen typologically in these snippets of the narrative, then it would seem to suggest that you or I, placed in the same circumstances, would likely yield the same results.

You also wonder if no one else would sacrifice Jesus, would any of us take the task upon ourself and do it on your own. Again, the biblical narrative does not seem to suggest a lack of willing volunteers, acting in ignorance of the will of God but well in keeping with whatever good reasons they thought they were acting upon. Judas, Caiaphas, Pilate--all of these come to mind as willing participants, whatever their motives, evil or otherwise. In our lovely southern parlance, Jesus "needed killin'" for quite a number of very good reasons when viewed from the perspectives of each of these people, so I have no doubt that I could likewise come up with a lot of good, rational reasons to do so myself. Would I do it for the sake of altruism? I doubt that I would have the courage. I have enough trouble as it stands obeying the will of God with matters requiring far less courage than this.

That's not much of an answer once you strip away all my tap dancing. What about you, Iztok? Your questions intrigue me, and I'm sure your own response would do so likewise.

Anonymous said...

Fair enough. Before I answer with my answers. I think that people just refuse to answer as it is easier for them not to think of these questions. At least for the first question if Jesus was real and really sacrificed there were people who were facing this question at one point. Why is this a troublesome question for Christian? Because they are faced with the dilemma of what they know is a good deed (saving an innocent person from being killed) and loyalty to their (cruel?) God? (Thy will will be done?) Answering yes seems to defy your God, answering no, makes you at least slightly immoral.

1. Would I save Jesus given an opportunity?

I sure hope I would. It goes with my morality of trying to help people when possible. People are asking me (including my parents, who should know better as they've raised me in such way) why I am going through issues of adopting a troubled 16 year old kid. Answer is simple. We (me and my wife) have the space and means and kids needs family. So we stepped up to the plate (as in many years she has been in DSS custody no one else did). So given the option I would certainly do my best to save an innocent person from being killed/crucified.

2. Would I sacrifice Jesus for our sins if no one else would?

Hell no!

It seems unreasonable that one would sacrifice someone. I see animal or human sacrifice as an extremely barbaric behavior.

Further more I don't see any option that someone else would pay for your sins. I feel that even if (just) god would exist it would be more important to him/her that people would live life to the best of their abilities then to sacrifice someone else for their shortcomings. I feel person is ultimately responsible for its own doings and honestly think if just god would exist it would take this into account over someone who lived dishonest life but praised him/her.

On the topic of why I read/study religion... it goes further then that. I try to expose my family to different world views and different religions whenever possible. Almost every year we go to local mosque during Ramadan for example. We also go to church for Christmas and Easter.

Speaking of family, our oldest kid came home from college today I'll ask her these questions (considering she is sporting "the fish" on her car :)

Sincerely,
Iztok

Nick said...

Why yes. From our timeframe, it looks like God does X and then he does Y. That's because we are in time, but if God is not in time, we cannot say God first did X and then he did Y. He does it all eternally. This helps us understand Scriptures like Ephesians 2 where we are seated in the heavenlies with Christ Jesus now.

Rest assured, I am certainly no open theist.

Nick said...

Iztok: 2. Would I sacrifice Jesus for our sins if no one else would?

Hell no!

It seems unreasonable that one would sacrifice someone. I see animal or human sacrifice as an extremely barbaric behavior.

Me: First off, you again need a moral standard in order to make moral judgments and that standard has yet to be given.

However, what is barbaric about this? Is it because it has blood? Please note that the sacrifice for the common Israelite was a sacrifice. They were giving up economic capital. They were constantly reminded of how serious sin is.

If God just sweeps things under the rug and acts like they're not there, then he does not treat his holiness seriously. Justice demands that evil be punished and good rewarded. This is my problem with the Islamic concept of God.

Iztok: Further more I don't see any option that someone else would pay for your sins. I feel that even if (just) god would exist it would be more important to him/her that people would live life to the best of their abilities then to sacrifice someone else for their shortcomings. I feel person is ultimately responsible for its own doings and honestly think if just god would exist it would take this into account over someone who lived dishonest life but praised him/her.

Me: But this would be completely arbitrary. What is the best we can live? Well, the standard given in Scripture is perfection. The truth is, we all know we're not living our best. We all know we can do better.

Let's suppose there was some point system. 1,000 points and you get to Heaven. Good deeds give X points. Bad deeds take away X points. What assurance could there be of salvation and who would call it just?

In the biblical system, you do not go to Hell for not believing in Jesus. Listen closely all my Christian brethren so you can see I'm not saying something heretical here. There are two ways of salvation. One is to live a life and never sin. I believe we've all ruined that one. The other one is Christ.

Now if you do not have Christ, what does God have to judge you on? Only one thing. Your works. They have to enter his criteria of holiness, which is himself. If he makes it anything less, then he lowers himself.

Thus, why do you go to Hell? You go for your works. They don't measure up.

Iztok: On the topic of why I read/study religion... it goes further then that. I try to expose my family to different world views and different religions whenever possible. Almost every year we go to local mosque during Ramadan for example. We also go to church for Christmas and Easter.

Me: And I think that's excellent. I wish the Christian church would learn exposure to more worldviews.

Iztok:Speaking of family, our oldest kid came home from college today I'll ask her these questions (considering she is sporting "the fish" on her car :)

Sincerely,
Iztok

Me: Must be a special time. I know my family is looking forward to "home for Christmas." I'd be interested in hearing her response. In all seriousness, Merry Christmas.

Danbo020759 said...
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Danbo020759 said...

Looks like Iztok has taken his song "on the road." In today's Charlotte Observer Forum Comments section he writes, "I wonder if armed people 2000 years ago would revolt against those who persecuted an innocent man and prevent him being crucified. Wonder if todays Christians given the opportunity and means would save Jesus from being nailed to the cross or they would let it happen in order for him to pay for their sins."

This guy just doesn't give up. Iztok, Jesus wouldn't have stood by for what you are proposing. Can't you get it through your thick skull that He came for that very purpose -- to redeem mankind of their sins?

Second, if you read Mt 26: 51-54, you'll find out what happened when one of Jesus' followers tried exactly what you suggest -- "And suddenly, one of the followers of Jesus grasped his sword and drew it; he struck the high priest's servant and cut off his ear. Jesus then said, 'Put your sword back, for all who draw the sword will die by the sword. Or do you think that I cannot appeal to my Father, who would promptly send more than twelve legions of angels to my defence? But then, how would the scriptures be fulfilled that say this is the way it must be?'"

Nick said...

I'd like to know what Iztok can tell me about honor/shame cultures.

Anonymous said...

Nick, I guess you would want me to go into shame vs. guilt culture debate? (who I am vs. what I did?)

Thing is that it should be obvious by now that "what I did" is way more my style of thinking vs. "who I am". Take it a bit further, I've wrote on several occasions that if God exists I am sure he will take into accounts "what I did" (i.e. my way of living and helping others) vs. "what I am" (i.e. being a Christian, believing in something on faith alone). If not, honestly I don't care for such judgment. Considering there is no evidence of existence of hell I care even less. I am concerned with more tangible things like compassion to a fellow human (hence my work towards adopting a troubled teen girl vs. those pro-lifers who just talk the talk when it is someone else's body but not willing to step up and adopt those hundreds of kids in NC in the custody of DSS). As always, talk is cheap.

Which reminds me, I need to run to a store to buy a bike for my foster daughter.

Sincerely,
Iztok

P.S.: Anyone else enjoyed Trans-Siberian Orchestra last night?

Nick said...

No Iztok. I'm not talking about you. I'm talking about honor/shame cultures. They're something quite different. Of course, we're so colored by individualism we don't seem to see that.

Anonymous said...

Nick,

I grew up in a shame culture as opposed to guilt culture here in US.

Sincerely,
Iztok

Nick said...

Then you should have no problem telling how the honor/shame culture differentiates from ours.