I’ve been tagged by Amy Blount of A New Life for this little game of tag.
Rules of the game, if you choose to participate, – things to do:
1. Answer the questions you receive (straight, funny, absurd, up to you)
2. Provide three new questions of your own
3. Tag three people
I have been asked the following:
1. Two part question- Where were you on Sept 11 2001? Do you remember the feeling of such fear?
I was at work in Southpointe Industrial Park near Canonsburg, PA, an hour or so from where the one aircraft crashed. One of my fellow employees was a retired Air Force navigator, a colonel. He asked me where the TV was stored. I was responsible for all presentation equipment in the building. I said in the executive conference room in the closet, but the bosses are having a meeting in there with a customer from overseas. The colonel said that if his wife wasn’t telling a lie, this trumps a meeting. He pulled the TV out of the room, on a rolling stand. We finally got a signal in time to see the second aircraft hit the second tower. The only time in twenty years we ever watched TV at work. By the way, our customers had a memorable adventure getting home.
I remember feeling a bit numb. I had been out of the Army Reserves for 15+ years. I felt more regret for not being young enough to serve than a feeling of fear as your question implies.
2. Where would you like to see yourself 10 years from now?
If it is God’s will, I could be at the feet of Jesus. If I am still alive, I see myself in front of a computer, writing. I might be teaching a Sunday school class. If I am not doing those things, my mind would be dead, so the body might as well be.
3. Do you support the idea of SantaClause? Do you think Christian parents should or should not allow their children to believe in santa?
I have no idea what a SantaClause is, but if it relates to parents not allowing their children to believe in Santa, I am torn. Or was this a typo?
Our boys, now 42 and 39, celebrated Santa far beyond the point when they did or did not believe in him, if they ever did. When I grew up, the Santa thing was quit for me by my mother who placed presents under a spare table in the kitchen marked: to me from Santa. No stocking that year, no mention of Santa afterwards – subject closed without explanation, cold, distant. I was either 7 or 8. Since that was such a trauma for me, I think the boys just went along with it through their teens, even stuffing their own stockings before they left home for good.
I contemplated not having Santa with our boys for religious reasons. I read a blog recently that talked about how we’ve given Santa godly characteristics that only God has, like omniscience, giving good gifts, virtual omnipresence, etc. We should only worship God, and Santa has been worshipped too much for too many years. Then there is the idea that when the kids figure it out, can they ever trust anything that you say? That was the one point that my wife and I struggled over, but eventually bowed to the world’s peer pressure. If we did not have Santa in our house, we would have been considered the Scrooges of our time. Maybe it is not that way anymore.
On 5 December, the Dutch celebrate Sinterklaas Day. Something similar is done in Germany. Although my wife was born in Indonesia, her parents were loyal to the Netherlands, moving to and from there before immigrating to the US. We exposed our boys to these cultures too, even staying at a German friend’s home in Bavaria for Christmas one year. The idea is to keep the religious traditions for Christmas. Even in these countries, it gets commercialized, but I love the thought.
1. What should a Christian’s (or a church’s) primary focus be during the Advent season, or simply choose between anticipation of the Christmas celebration or anticipation of Christ’s return?
2. In your blog writing, what is your chief goal, for the present and long term?
3. Almost everyone has one of these memories of a grandparent, aunt, uncle, whatever. This is a multipart question. Who gave you the same thing at Christmas every year? What was the predictable gift? And did you even like it? (For example: My mother’s mother, MawMaw, gave me two kinds of chocolate. One was always a box of chocolate covered cherries, cordials – non-alcoholic. Of all the holiday candy, that was my least favorite, but I never figured out how to steer her in a different direction. It was the easiest present to guess the contents – same size, weight, and shape of the box every year. But after 30+ years of her being gone, oh how I miss it.)