Thursday, February 22, 2007

Juice Juice Juice Juice Juice Juice Juice ...

My son Lucas was making a request for juice the other day. But simply asking for or requesting it wasn't sufficient. Instead, he continuously repeated his request until I started to get it and also the whole time while I was getting it for him. It was annoying and yet kind of funny at the same time.

I was saying "OK, I'm getting it for you. Be patient kiddo. It's going to take a minute." I've gotten his juice for him thousands of times already. He should know by now that I'm going to get it, and he should also know that there is a process to preparing it before he will have it in his hands to drink.

Then I wondered if that's what it is like when we pray to God continuously for something. He has previously answered my prayers thousands of times before, but the evidence of the response is very rarely instantaneous. Depending on the request, there is usually a process of some sort (often something that I wouldn't have imagined on my own) that falls into place while the answer materializes.

Jesus does encourage us to be persistent in Luke 11:5-13 though. The Bible also says in James that you must believe and not doubt (is this specifically about asking for wisdom, or for anything?). And I must admit that when Lucas does ask repeatedly like that, if what he's asking for is in his best interest (like juice) then it does inspire me to try to get it for him quicker.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Global Fluctuations?

In my previous blog about global warming, I wrote about how I was introduced to the idea of global warming through my personal experiences and realizations. I didn't even mention greenhouse gases, ozone depletion, or any other of the many details that are resulting from our consumption and habitation here on planet Earth. Just a simple explanation as to why it makes sense to me from a basic logical and practical perspective.

On the other side of the coin though, Drudge recently linked to an article from a Canadian climatologist, who stated that global warming is a big hoax and gave a lengthy explanation to back up his claim. Neal Boortz (a favorite talk show host of mine - his daily news page is in my link list) has also been saying that global warming is a lie from the onset of the fervor for it, and on 2/2/07 he posted a long list of reasons as to why he believes this.

There are many other recent and convincing links that oppose the idea of man-made global warming as well, including the following:
  • This petition, signed by over 17,000 people in various scientific fields, all opposing the concept of man's actions having a significant negative impact on our climate.
  • This article on 2/10/07 about the cosmic rays of the Sun causing more harm than all of man's efforts.
  • This article on 2/12/07 by MSNBC's George Will, that outlines some of the general climate fluctuations over an extended period of history and also condemns the Kyoto treaty.
  • Thomas Sowell (one of my favorite commentators) wrote an informative three piece article, linked here (part I), here (part II), and here (part III).
So, while I can grasp and agree with the concepts of global warming, I can also understand and have a difficult time disagreeing with the many convincing opinions on the dissenting end of the subject, and more importantly the facts that accompany them. And I definitely disagree with the panic and doomsday scenarios being painted by the advocates of the global warming movement.

So if I can comprehend and agree with both sides of the issue, then am I somehow sitting on both sides of the fence? Either man is causing irreparable harm to the planet and we're all doomed, or it's a big fat farce. So which is it? Well, I think I will actually have to write a part 3 on the topic, which will arrive at the compelling (hopefully, but not likely) conclusion of what my final opinion actually is. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Valentines Day: Revised, Redundant, Reduced?

My beautiful wife and I have shared 12 Valentines Days together, including this one. In fact, it was on this day in 1995 that we first professed our love for each other, after only 2.5 months of dating.

This holiday though, will be the least celebrated one of our long relationship. No, I don't mean that it's less relevant, just that the circumstances of our lives on this day are the least favorable to doing anything special or extraordinary for it.

Not only is it difficult to go out because of the two kids, but even if we do manage to get a sitter and head out for the evening, it wouldn't be until 8pm at the earliest (after Emily is in bed). And then we are very limited as to what we can eat for dinner due to Amanda's dietary restrictions (due to Emily's allergies).

Next year the kids will be older and Emily no longer will rely on Amanda for nourishment, so perhaps we can make grander plans. But tonight will entail staying at home, taking a romantic bath, eating dark chocolate from Trader Joe's (doesn't contain milk), and drinking bubbly together. It definitely isn't as elaborate as it used to be but as long as I'm with my valentine, I guess it'll do.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Michael, meet Global Warming

My introduction to global warming first occurred in the early 1990's as I was waiting for a bus next to Colonial drive in Central Florida, close to a busy intersection (are there even any non-busy intersections on hwy 50?). Cars were stopped and idling right in front of me while waiting for the light to turn green. It was a warm day to begin with, but feeling the heat radiating off of them, it was then that I grasped the concept of global warming.

It was simple to me, us humans are burning fuel that is normally at either air or underground temperature, causing a chemical reaction and introducing additional heat to a closed environment. In my head, I had a picture of a glass box which represented Earth and the atmosphere. Place a heat source in the middle of it or light a match inside and of course the temperature is going to get hotter. Granted, the size of the box (the Earth is large) and of the heat source relative to it (cars are negligible by comparison) must also be taken into consideration. But take the significant amount of heat that is being generated by that one car in front of me and multiply it by hundreds of thousands that are running all day long, every day of the year and surely there would be an affect from it.

Part two of my introduction presented itself when riding my motorcycle at night down Alafaya trail, in the Waterford Lakes (East Orlando) area. For a mile stretch, both sides of the road were lined with trees (probably not anymore). When riding from the busier section of the road into the tree-lined portion I felt the temperature drop noticeably. Significantly cooler air was present as soon as I encountered the trees on both sides.

So again, it was simple. We are removing trees that cool the environment to an extent that is relevant, and replacing them with parking lots and cement buildings. Therefore we are not only adding heat by the combustion of fossil fuels, but we are also removing the foliage that would normally absorb the harsh rays of the Sun and convert them to Oxygen for us to inhale, as well as providing additional cooling of our atmosphere.

Is everything as simple or straightforward as it seems though? Stay tuned for part 2...

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Talking to Angels?

I came across an interesting news story in FARK yesterday about a young girl in San Antonio, who supposedly sees and talks to angels.

While I think it's entirely possible, that doesn't mean that I'm not skeptical either. She does give a little more detail than I would think a whacko could conjure, and isn't she too young to be that insane, especially since they state that she first started seeing them at age 4?

What do you readers think? Does she belong in a loony bin, or do you think there's some validity to her claims?

On a side note, what's up with all of the Virgin of Guadalupe references in the video? Hearing the mother talk about her basically like Jesus is more than a little annoying. It even goes beyond the normal Catholic worshiping of Mary.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Off-Keynote Speaker

I received an email invitation to an Embedded Systems Conference in San Jose this April.

While that isn't anything interesting in and of itself, I thought it very odd that the keynote speaker that is heavily advertised in the email (register early to get priority seating!) is Al Gore.

Now, this isn't just a conference about general technology, like CES (the Consumer Electronics Show), it's specifically about embedded devices/systems. It would already be a big stretch to associate Al Gore with general technology even, but what the heck does he have to do with embedded devices? My guess is that the event organizer is a liberal global warming fanatic who wet himself at the very notion of getting to meet Mr. Inconvenient Truth himself.

Speaking of Al Gore, I read some interesting articles lately about global warming and will maybe post my thoughts on the topic sometime soon. I'm guessing that subject will generate some interesting comments.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

The Unforgiveable Sin

This morning, a co-worker and prayer buddy of mine mentioned that ABC news did a story about an atheist who is on a campaign to get people to perform the unforgivable sin, which is to publicly deny (blaspheme) the holy spirit. The story is here.

I hate to admit it but I didn't even know that there was such a thing as an unpardonable sin. I tried to argue with my co-worker against the idea, but it's pretty clearly stated in the Bible in Mark 3:29 and Luke 12:10. I even checked multiple versions of the Bible to make sure it wasn't an issue with translation.

So the idea of this website is that these people are so confident in the non-existence of God that they are willing to completely throw away their chances of ever getting to heaven. So far about 800 people have actually jumped off of that eternal bridge.

If you would be willing to, please consider praying for anyone who is considering participating in what is essentially an act of eternal suicide. My hope is that some of the people who are considering this action get an undeniable feeling that it is wrong. Then perhaps they will wonder where that feeling is coming from, seek to find the source of that feeling, and eventually turn to God, instead of against Him.
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