From Across the Net – “Help! My Child Games Too Much!”

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Daniel Burton, over at Love Thy Nerd, hits the nail on the head with his article “Help! My Child Games Too Much!“. I can’t preach this enough:

  • Move All The Electronics Out Of The Bedroom: While this will make you the most unpopular person in the house, this is for everyone’s benefit. Seeing the games your children are playing becomes increasingly difficult when the door is closed. This goes for internet access and phones as well. With all the dangers present on the internet, unmonitored access behind closed doors seems more irresponsible than convenient. We should absolutely trust children to make smart, wise decisions, but that doesn’t mean we should make it easy for them not to. Trust but verify. When you bring everything out into the open, they become a part of the family and not a hermit who leaves their bedroom only to come out for meals. Open access provides accountability and, whether they like it or not, encourages children and teens to behave responsibly online.

I get tired of hearing stories of parents giving their kids unlimited access to the Internet, in their bedrooms, and the kids finding porn.

You can read Daniel’s entire article here.

The Good Samaritan

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Take a moment to read the scripture below and we’ll pick up our conversation after.

The Parable of the Good Samaritan

25 And behold, a lawyer stood up to put him to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” 26 He said to him, “What is written in the Law? How do you read it?” 27 And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.” 28 And he said to him, “You have answered correctly; do this, and you will live.”

29 But he, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” 30 Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who stripped him and beat him and departed, leaving him half dead. 31 Now by chance a priest was going down that road, and when he saw him he passed by on the other side.32 So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion. 34 He went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he set him on his own animal and brought him to an inn and took care of him.35 And the next day he took out two denarii[a] and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, ‘Take care of him, and whatever more you spend, I will repay you when I come back.’ 36 Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?” 37 He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” And Jesus said to him, “You go, and do likewise.” – Luke 10:25-37 (ESV)

“And who is my neighbor?”

We like to think of our neighbors as those who are like us. Those that:

  • Look like us
  • Wear the same types of clothes
  • Eat the same types of foods
  • Enjoy the same types of hobbies
  • Maybe even have been raised/brought up in a similar manner

Photo by Hayden Walker on Unsplash

But Jesus pushes far past the similarities. His story above reminds me that I’d like to think that I’m the Samaritan. More often than not, I’m more so the priest and the Levite in the story, avoiding those that don’t look like me and continuing on my way. We crave the safety of our selected neighbors and tribes.

Lord, push me past that which I deem safe.

I Loved Avengers: Infinity War

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Tabitha, Wyatt, and I finally got a chance to watch “Avengers: Infinity War” over the weekend. We loved it! Can’t wait to see the endgame play out on April 26.

Welcome to Spoiler Country

I loved:

  • Thanos! He was awesome. Best shot of the movie is the final shot of him looking content on his farm. He had finally succeeded in bringing “balance” to the universe. Nothing quite like seeing a bad guy win. Also loved the stakes Thanos brings to the table.
  • How the story perfectly balances a huge cast of characters.
  • Bruce Banner fighting without Hulk. “Avengers: Infinity War” made it feel like Bruce had finally come to the point where he realized he didn’t need Hulk to make a difference.
  • Dr. Strange playing a much bigger “endgame”.
  • Thor going on a weapon quest with Rocket the “rabbit”. 🙂
  • Peter Dinklage showing up unexpectedly… as a giant.
  • “Avengers: Infinity War” fading to black. Making you want more. MOAR!
  • Nick Fury’s cameo at the end of the credits.

I disliked:

  • The lack of Hawkeye. By the looks of the “Avengers: Endgame” trailer below, Hawkeye looks to be back but acting like he has been hanging out with Wolverine.

On My Radar – FAR: Lone Sails

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FAR: Lone Sails reminds me of a mix of The Final Station (keep moving forward) and Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime (little guys running a ship). Looks like a perfect game to chill with. Might be an even better Nintendo Switch versus PS4 title?

A Friday Confession

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I used to pray, God, use me however you want. I used to sing loudly, with tears in my eyes, God, where you lead, I will follow. (Tears because I didn’t want God to send me into the backwoods somewhere without air conditioning.) I prayed with a bigger picture in mind; I sang open to the will of God for my life. The subtle current of wanting adventure, thrills beyond the everyday life, thrummed beneath the surface of my prayers. As The Killers sing in their song “Read My Mind”:

I never really gave up on
Breakin’ out of this two-star town

What I was really praying was, God, I’m willing to follow you as long as it means new places, new people, and a lack of monotony. 

Photo by Camille Puche on Unsplash

When I graduated from college back in 2006, I thought I’d get married and leave Longview forever. My big plans were to go back to Southern California, get an amazing job OR start a video game ministry, and life would go on. But then economy imploded… and God has used those 12 years since graduation to shape and form me into something new. I’m not the same guy that I was, and I recognize that as being good.

Do you ever feel like Moses, living in the wilderness with his wife and father-in-law? Being prepared, by God, away from the limelight, in safety? Do you ever wonder if you are being taught to just focus on and impact those around you? I do. Our world is all about the big, the bold, the blaring Coldplay stadium anthems. Anthems that silently whisper to us that if you aren’t doing something big, in life or for God, then you are a failure.

Here is where I want to land: You are not a failure.

In the Bible, God consistently uses those the world does not know for His glory, purpose, and Kingdom. I think we have to pray that our hearts align more with Him and less with the overwhelming expectations the world and even Christian culture can put on us. You can make a difference for His Kingdom where you are, right now. You don’t even have to move. Even though Switchfoot might dare you to.

Assassins Creed III Reborn

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As a History / Political-Science major, I was excited over the launch of Assassins Creed III. I even pre-ordered the game (a rarity for me). When all was said and done though, Assassins Creed III was a disappointment. So many ideas, poorly executed, with a game engine that couldn’t do the heavy lifting those ideas required. The end result was a buggy, slow-running mess, and I quit.

The upcoming PS4 remaster of Assassins Creed III has me intrigued. I’m wondering if the game engine has been upgraded? I’d love to play through this period of history. Maybe protagonist Connor has been given some hugs/love to help with his sour disposition? Maybe not. I guess we’ll soon see.