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In all my years of hearing the Christmas story, every message I heard focussed on Mary’s faithfulness. This year, I noticed something different.

Mary didn’t have a choice. <gasp>

Mary was told what was going to happen. She wasn’t asked. She did agree with the plan, but it really wasn’t up to her.

Joseph was the one with the choice.

He had already made up his mind to divorce Mary (It wasn’t his kid she was carrying), but he chose to obey God and stand by her.

He changed his mind. He went against his gut. He went against tradition. He chose to stay. He chose to obey.

I wonder what would happen if more fathers would choose to stay and obey?

Merry Christmas

That’s what I’ve been giving you for the last few months. And it’s been on purpose.

I didn’t do it to hurt you. Actually, I did it to keep from hurting you.

You see, I have been hurting for the past few months, and I recognize that hurting people hurt other people. So, I went silent in an attempt to not hurt anyone – intentionally or otherwise.

I’m glad to say that I am on the upside of the healing process, and feel as though I can communicate again without pain and anger coming out.

It feels good to be back. Thanks for being patient with me.

A little over a week ago, Ginny, Riley and I went out for lunch on my day off. On the way into the restaurant, there was a sign announcing the soup of the day. Once at our table, there was another sign stating what the soup of the day was. Then when the waitress came by, she reminded us of the soup of the day. If that wasn’t enough, the menu advertised the soup of the day AND stated that ant “extra” item could be substituted for a slight charge.

OK. Now I have my gameplan. Prime rib sandwich, black eyed peas w/ rice, and the soup of the day.

Waitress: “Oh, I can’t substitute the soup for one of your sides.”

What? The most advertised thing in your restaurant and you won’t sell it to me? I’m willing to pay the difference for it and I can’t? Is Jerry Seinfeld around somewhere?

A few thoughts came to mind:

  1. She better not charge me for Ginny’s drink since my meal comes with one and I ordered water. (She didn’t.)
  2. What would Seth Godin think about this.
  3. How many Sundays do churches do this exact same thing to people searching for Christ? (I’ll elaborate.)

Every Sunday churches are open with the supposed purpose of connecting people with Jesus Christ. Most of the time, that person has to make an initial investment to show up, uninvited, to a strange place filled with strange people. Then that person has to walk down front with every eye on him and speak to the guy up front with the microphone while verse four sits on repeat. He jumps through all these uncomfortable hoops to get the advertised special, only to be told:

“Clean up your addiction to _____  first.”

“Get married or move out because you’re living in sin.”

“You’re parked in my spot.”

“We have a standard for attire here.”

“God hates homosexuals.”

I could go on, but I won’t. Why is it the one thing churches are supposed to lift up, we hide behind red tape? Why is the most important thing added as a footnote to the service, with conditions that are impossible for outsiders to attain? Why is the advertised item not able to be had?

I’m often guilty of this. What about you?

Down. Barely. Thanks to Travis crossing lines. (He must sit down to pee.)

Little did I know this post would generate so much conversation.

There were 4 votes for down, 3 votes for up, 2 votes for installing a urinal and 2 votes for peeing outside.

I say in protest we put BOTH the seat and the lid down, forcing the women to lift the lid.

Standing urinators unite!

Money is the reason for most arguments in a marriage. I dare say this may be second place: The Toilet Seat.

So here’s the age old question: Up or Down?

Ladies will likely say down, while men don’t care.

The only reason men leave the seat up is because we catch as much crap from pissing on the seat as we do from leaving the seat up. We’d be just as happy leaving the seat down and pissing all over it. In my mind, that’s 1/2 the reason the toilet paper is there. To wipe the seat. (No pun intended)

The way I see it, women want us to lift the seat when we urinate, then lower the seat when we’re finished. Men are expected to do 100% of this two-step process. Why can’t women just look before they plop down?

Anyways, it’s a losing battle, but should make for good conversation.

So what’s the verdict? Up or Down?