This Is Me

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

More on my friend Meredith

The doctors found multiple tumors around Meredith's pelvis (sounds like involving bone, around her spinal column, etc.). In a nightmarish series of tests, they kept finding more tumors with each test. The biopsy results came back yesterday looking malignant, but the sample was sent to a different lab for further evaluation; they think it is a rare form of cancer, and are supposed to know more by Friday.

I found out that by God's providence, on Friday when the first of the tests were being done, (they thought that worst case scenario it was a slipped disc, so while they were unprepared for support, God supplied it) Meredith was not alone throughout her day of testing (first her best friend happened to be passing through the city her hospital is in and was able to be contacted so she could stay with Meredith for the day; then my sister was able to pick her up at the hospital and get her to her husband.)

My home church, of which Meredith and her husband are a part, and the whole island from which we are from are gearing up with financial support, practical support, and prayer, but I would greatly appreciate more prayer. My house church is also considering ways we can do fundraisers to raise some more financial support. I don't think Meredith and Bryan have very extensive, if any, medical insurance. If anyone's willing to help out with a fundraiser, or has an idea for one, please let me know.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Too Late For Prince Charming?

The following is a quote from this article in Newsweek which has the most outrageous quotes (and the worst spell-checking I have ever seen). I'm not sure whether to laugh at some of the people quoted or be insulted by them. I may have to settle for both. It has man and married-woman haters quoted as well as men whining about picky women who don't like nice guys. And it goes on. I chose the most outrageous comment to sarcastically pick apart.

"The study's main message—that delaying marriage may [statistically] ultimately mean forgoing it—clearly came as a slap in the face to this generation's best and brightest women. "When you look at men who don't marry, you're often looking at the bottom of the barrel," says Berkeley sociologist Nancy Chodorow. "When you look at the women who don't marry, you're looking at the cream of the crop." "

Can you think of any group other than single women who don't want to ever marry that this comment DOESN'T insult? (I say this as a unmarried career woman who is STILL insulted. Although, admittedly, I am planning on getting married next year.) Apparently career-driven, busy women are the cream of the crop and pity the poor woman who marries - she is clearly sub-par. Oh yes, but single men? They're all losers. Of course, the cream of the crop men were stupid enough to marry sub-par women, so poor men - they don't realize they got the low-quality women.

I wonder if Nancy Chodorow is bitter about her prospects and trying to make herself feel better?

But the sadness comes in when most that is to be seen in this article is bitterness, from both men and women, and an emptiness they are looking to fill. Being single doesn't have to be synonymous with being bitter does it?

That's probably why this second article was written - well that and the backlash and publicitiy they got back in 1986 from the original article. This second one is a little more cheery. And for you readers of the book Captivating, notice how women can find joy and fulfillment in giving birth to movements, not just children. Interesting yes?

prayer for my friend

My friend Meredith, who is maybe a year older than I am and got married 2 years ago (her husband I have known since I was about 8 and I introduced them - they are both close friends of mine and the rest of my family. Meredith was a co-worker of mine originally and her husband, Brian, works with my dad and is my brother-in-law's best friend and has always been a brother to me. I sang at their wedding.) has had regular pain from her hip and back since the middle of her pregnancy with their daughter Meriel, so about a year now. Finally she got an MRI [finances for the youngsters being what they are], and they found a tumor on/in the bone. She is now at a hospital and awaits a more thorough CAT or MRI and a biopsy later today.

They are both believers, but this is still a hard time for us all. They are both a part of my family in my heart and I would appreciate it if you all would pray for peace for Brian and Meredith and all of their family and church family and friends and that the tumor would be benign and that there would be complete healing so that she doesn't have to live with horrible back pain for the rest of her life. I pray that this would be God's will.

Thank you.

Monday, May 22, 2006

House Churches and Homeschooling

Yesterday someone was trying to convince me that housechurches are a bad idea. They then compared the bad decision to go to a housechurch to the bad decision to homeschool your kids. This person knew I was homeschooled K-12. I mean, why try to convince me something that I do evidences a lack of faith in God and then use as an example the way that my parents brought me up was poorly decided? I had to try really hard not to laugh. I mean, I know people get all nervous when I bring up that I go to a house church, but the comparing it to homeschooling was rich. (Especially when the person brought up how poorly socialized homeschooled kids are - knowing what a social butterfly I am) I mean, it didn't really make his point - because obviously I'm not going to go "It evidences a lack of faith in God just like homeschooling? Well, I should stop going!" being as I completely agree that my parents homeschooling me was a good choice. Rather than being a convincing argument, it's just going to piss me off (I wasn't pissed off, I was amused, but that was more my reaction than the way the argument was set forth.)

In the end, the point he made was mine - public schooling is a government construct - not set up by God for the Enlightenment and Education of our youth. Also, it's a fairly new government construct. For most of history, public schooling was unknown; it's not a sign of a lack of faith in God to homeschool your children instead of sending them to public school, it's the traditional way to educate them. God has not given public schools the corner on educating children and told parents that even though they birthed the children they may not educate them unless they do not trust Him and are not Good Followers of Him. That argument is, frankly, ridiculous.

Now take house churches. House churches are the way the original New Testament church did things. This one pastor/one church mentality is new and a construct - not the way the New Testament church did things, not the way the Bible explains things "ought" to be. I don't necessarily have a problem with a 'normal' church, but to say that God has given the corner to 'normal' churches the way he has given the education corner to public schools is....well, not taking anything in the Bible in context. Is there further revelation? For sure, God is constantly revealing Himself - it didn't just stop when the copyright was put on the Bible the first time (thank you John Stott for putting this into concrete thought for me). However, saying that "God only supports public schooling" or "God only supports our modern notion of a church" (as opposed to the notion set forth in scripture) makes no sense to me. It doesn't seem to be a case of revelation after the Bible - it seems to be a cultural idea. A church being set up one pastor (or a even just a few/one church isn't even just a modern notion. After all, in China they still have house churches (and the Chinese church is thriving so much more than the American one. Interesting.) It's a modern, Western notion. All my advisor really said in his argument was "God supports these modern, Western cultural ways of setting things up over what was done all throughout history, or in the Bible, that actually have no basis in scripture, but still it is so." and then used one argument for a cultural construct to support the other. This is about as convincing an argument as "God only supports Republicans."

Furthermore: What sort of person uses an argument that will insult you (and your parents and many of your friends and their parents) to sway you into taking his or her advise? This is almost as convincing as when a someone on a sidewalk tried to convince me to donate to a charity and give them my credit card number without letting me check up on their organization first and as they were trying to convince me verbally bashed me, Jeremiah, and all who adhere to Christianity (after finding out that I am a Christian).

What are people thinking?