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The “dream” passed on!

Inside this week’s issue

Breaking news: Tuesday 3:30 pm
• Lois and I just received word that our $40,000+ hospital bill was forgiven! (This summer, she had an unexpected hysterectomy and I had radiation treatments for cancer.) “Thank you, Father!”

Heavy topics
• Hi, I’m Jim. I’m prejudiced
• Jesus on racial, gender, religious and social prejudices
• Top ten signs you might be prejudiced
• Life is a civil right
• Top ten things President Bush is doing on his last day in office
• Is President-elect Obama a Christian?
• Ala carte Christianity
• The weight adventure: week 2
• Twenty worst foods in America

Light touch
• HTML humor
• Mr. Manners on . . .
• “Writing with Humor” at Taylor University
• Best late-night lines of the week

Hi, I’m Jim. I’m prejudiced.

Like members of Alcholics Anonymous, we all need to be incredibly honest and announce, “Hi, I’m [fill in your name]. I’m prejudiced.”

Me? I’m prejudice against people who are prejudiced. I’m prejudiced against people who don’t view women as equals. And I’m prejudiced against Pepsi. (If I ask for a Diet Coke in a restaurant, no tip for you if you try to subsitute a Diet Pepsi!)

But the most intolerant people I’ve ever met are members of the PC police who, while claiming to be tolerant, are totally intolerant against anyone they view as not tolerant. (And, as I’ve written, intolerance is not always a bad thing.) The important thing is to be honest, admit there are areas in which we’re prejudiced, discern if they are good, bad or neutral, and then deal with them.

So . . .
Jesus on racial, gender, religious and social prejudices
Top ten signs you might be prejudice
Life is a civil rights issue

Top ten things President Bush is doing on last day in office

10. Making last free long-distance calls on the hot line
9. Packing up new $492,798 china set (actually it stays with the House)
8. Filling out all those change of address cards
7. Making prank calls to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Kim Jong Il and Nancy Pelosi
6. Working on his “Funniest Bloopers” compilation (click for clip)
5. Packing up Iraqi shoe collection
4. Sicking Barney on reporters
3. Joy-riding in Air Force One
2. Having one last romp in Lincoln Bedroom
1. Leaving legacy at the curb

No matter what your political persuasion, you’ve got to feel some amount of compassion for a president whose name will forever be synonymous with the Iraq War, Hurricane Katrina and the economic recession. As The Onion reported the day after the election, “Black man gets worst job in America.”

So, my thoughts and prayers are with the human being who is probably having a tough day. I hate moving!

And my thoughts and prayers are with Barack Obama as he does assume the “worst job in America.” “Father, give him wisdom and courage to do what is pleasing to You.” Which brings us to . . .

Is President-elect Obama a Christian?

During the US presidential campaign, I ran excerpts from a 2004 interview in which, then Senate-candidate, Barack Obama discussed his faith. (Plus, I’ll throw in a freebie which was one of my top ten pages in 2008.)
Are presidential candidates “Christian”?
Were Founding Fathers Christian?

Ala carte Christianity

And, speaking of America’s faith, a new report from The Barna Group reveals “Americans are increasingly comfortable picking and choosing what they deem to be helpful and accurate theological views and have become comfortable discarding the rest of the teachings in the Bible.”

The survery of 1,004 adults reveals “people who consider themselves to be Christian now believe that the Bible is totally accurate in all of the lessons it teaches at the same time that they believe Jesus Christ sinned. Millions also contend that they will experience eternal salvation because they confessed their sins and accepted Christ as their savior, but also believe that a person can do enough good works to earn eternal salvation.”

According to the findings, Americans no longer accept the doctrines and beliefs of their church or denomination, but “serve as their own theologian-in-residence . . . embracing an unpredictable and contradictory body of beliefs.” And speaking of unhealthy eating . . .

The weight adventure: week 2

Inspired by The Biggest Loser, my daughter and I are competing with a group of Facebook friends to shed some weight, so to be accountable, I’ll be posting my pounds lost each week. This week—sound of scale beeping, dramatic pause—two pounds! (That despite a weekend getaway to Essenhaus!)

Twenty worst foods in America

A great list of the best and worst entrees at restaurants. For instance, Blimpie’s Veggie Supreme (12″) packs on 1,106 calories, 56 g fat (33 g saturated fat), 2,831 mg sodium and 96 g carbohydrates! You’d be better off eating two Big Macs.
Eat this, not this

HTML humor

Photo from neatorama.com

Don’t get it? Well, most Web sites are programmed with hyper text markup language (HTML) and the top of each page is called a “head” and. . . . It’s a geek thing.

Mr. Manners on . . .

Mr. Manners makes gentle suggestions for driving, emailing, being a good neighbor, shopping and polite conversation.
Click here

Writing with Humor at Taylor University

I’ll be teaching a course on “Writing with Humor” at Taylor University Fort Wayne Saturdays February 14, March 14, April 18 and May 9. Click for syllabus; call 800.233.3922 for details and registration.

Best late-night lines of the week

Craig Ferguson
• There’s a new study out that says too much caffeine can cause hallucinations. I think it’s true because I was at Starbucks today, and I hallucinated that a cup of coffee cost $4.

Jay Leno
• All across the country, unemployment offices are swamped with people waiting to file for unemployment insurance. It’s gotten so bad, the offices are overwhelmed and they can’t even function. I have an idea: Why don’t you hire more people?
• Obama says that he wants to bring a “sense of accountability” to Washington. I have a better idea — why not bring some accountants to Washington?

David Letterman
• Freezing cold today. So cold, Bernie Madoff had his hands in his own pockets. So cold, people were throwing shoes at Al Gore.

Final touches

Thought for the week
He is a [sane] man who can have tragedy in his heart and comedy in his head.
G. K. Chesterton
• Click for more encouraging quips and quotes.

More light touches
Church humor from Rev.
The Dredge Report (Humor page)
Top ten lists

Have a great weekl! (And come back next Monday for more “heavy topics with a light touch.”)

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