Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Another late night last night. Early morning actually. I was up late Sunday, which meant I got to work later than normal, which caused a late start on Monday's refrigerator saga, which meant another late bedtime, which meant I got to work later than normal yesterday, which meant I had less time to cram the stuff I wanted to get done Monday into Tuesday, plus the stuff I had planned for Tuesday, which meant I got to bed at 1:30 am again last night. Well, this morning. Whatever. I have to leave work at 4 pm today no matter how few hours that gives me, so I guess I will have to make the time up some other day. And I will not be staying late after youth group tonight. I need some sleep so I can stay awake in college tomorrow.

In any case, I was able to get a fairly large load of rocks from my parents place yesterday. Another 20 loads or so that size and I should have enough to at least start some landscaping. The rest of the "evening" was getting music and a lesson together for tonight.

Today I pick up my new pack of batteries for the power shed. I'd like to have everything hooked up this weekend, but I'm not sure that's going to happen with Saturday being the Trout Festival. My parents are in the parade this year, so for some odd reason, they expect me to be there. Go figure. In any case, work, picking up batteries and youth group will pretty much make it a day.

The talkorigins archive recently put up the Post of the Month for March. The first post was from a Jehovah's Witness that is in a dilemma similar to mine. I sent him the following e-mail yesterday:

Thank you for sharing your story. I, too, have talkorigins to thank for opening my eyes. I've been in GARBC Baptist churches all of my life and was taught the standard YEC line. I went to a Christian school as well, so I was never confronted with the other side of the story. In college, I took physics for my lab science, mainly because it was taught by a Christian professor. In short, I had been fed one view my entire life. About five years ago, I found talkorigins and started reading the FAQ's as the result of a challenge by a fellow list-member to the Christlib (Christian Libertarian) mailing list. The first thing that had to go was the young earth. That wasn't too earth-shattering (no pun intended...), and I already knew that JW's and several others held to the old earth.

Then I got into the flood FAQ's, and I was in deep trouble. Nothing added up and no amount of squinting at Genesis could reconcile the "infallible" scripture's flood story with geology. I had to make a choice of either "trusting" God or following the evidence. I, too, am reasonably intelligent (high 130's) so the former was simply not an option. I had to follow the evidence no matter where it took me. I thought I didn't like biology, but I gritted my teeth and dug into the micro-biology FAQ's and found that what I didn't like was the carefully sanitized biology of my Christian high school. Biology without evolution is like physics without quantum mechanics: a bunch of seemingly unrelated bits that don't have a lot to do with each other.

So here is where I am right now:
Ancient universe and earth
No world-wide flood
All living things are the result of common decent with modification

Parts I'm still struggling with:
God's role in bringing humanity about
What is the human soul and with that our eternal destiny?
My approach to the Bible

My situation is a bit precarious at the moment. I am a deacon in my church and don't believe what the church teaches (YEC is written right into the constitution, and I cannot technically even be a member of the church if I disagree with the constitution). I also teach Jr. High and Sr. High Bible study on Sunday morning and I'm the head of the youth ministries. It's those last two that are really tearing me up right now. I listen to these kids repeating the crap they have learned from AiG and Hovind and the rest and I want to tell them the truth. I've tried a number of times to show them some of the silliest parts in the hope that they will begin digging on their own. But many of them are home schooled and all access to information is carefully screened by their parents. The others already have tons of homework and other, more interesting, things going on, and I can't flunk them so they never get around to checking out anything I give them.

If I hadn't become involved in youth ministry, I would have just written a letter a couple years ago to the church explaining why I couldn't be a member any longer and let things fall where they may. But these are my kids, and I can't just walk away. My wife and I have no children of our own; these teens are all we have. Giving that up would shred both of us emotionally. So here I sit on a knife edge and wonder what is next. But I do know this: I *will* follow the evidence, no matter the cost. I can't believe in a God that would have me do anything else.

My prayers are with you in your journey and for the day that the Body of Christ can be united once again.

This is only one of several similar letters sent to talkorigins over the years from Catholics and Protestants of every stripe. We should start a support group for recovering YEC's. Come up with a twelve-step program and we could get paid by our health insurance plans...

Anyway, it's probably not smart posting that here, but who said I was smart?


Fred Reed has a great piece on the fate of the print news media in the age of blogging.

The FBI issued its final report on Harris and Klebold. Disturbing, to say the least. What does a society do with true psychopaths? Harris, according to the psychiatric profession, could not be fixed by any technique or drug. If this is true, and that is a big if given the "science" of psychiatry, what do we do with them? Lock them in a cell for the rest of their life? Execute them? It doesn't take much imagination to see the potential for abuse in either of those courses of action. In fact it takes no imagination at all, just a knowledge of the past abuses against women, who became inconvenient to their husbands, by the very same psychiatric profession that today condemns Harris as "irretrievable." Something else we should be thinking hard about but aren't.

Well, back to the grind.

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