Archive for October, 2010

Legacy Lodge Benefit

Posted: October 28, 2010 by pastorerichann in Uncategorized

If you live in the Chariton – Lucas County, Iowa, area, consider attending the Legacy Lodge benefit on November 6 from 6 – 9 pm. The even will be fun and they do a great work for the community. Go here for more information about this.

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Owl City records “In Christ Alone”

Posted: October 27, 2010 by pastorerichann in Uncategorized

Pop-artist known as “Owl City” recently recorded a version of “In Christ Alone” which can be heard online here. I had heard rumors previously he was a professing Christian. Interestingly, I heard he lived not to far from here (south central Iowa) as a kid. In fact, his grandfather served for many years as a pastor, and some people in our church know both his parents and grandparents. I suppose his Iowa background might have had some influence on a certain “fire-flies” reference.

Reborn Video – Washed by the Water

Posted: October 27, 2010 by pastorerichann in Music and Art

Some of you had a chance to see Reborn in Knoxville, recently. I’m certain the concert was great. Here’s a link to a video from a previous concert of their cover of “Washed by the Water.” Enjoy.

Iowa Christian Voter Guide Database – 2010

Posted: October 15, 2010 by pastorerichann in Social Issues
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There are numerous Christian-influenced resources available regarding the upcoming Nov. 2, 2010 election. Below are links to some of them. Be encouraged to approach the information in these resources within the framework of your own prayerful, Christian conscience.

Iowa Christian Alliance voter guides

Iowa Family Policy Center Election Resources

Iowa Eagle Forum Election Guide

AFA Iowa Election Guide

Iowa Right to Life Election Guide

Iowa election information

Iowa Polling Locations

Register to Vote (Eagle Forum site)

AFA register to vote (AFA site)

Quotable – Andrew Murray

Posted: October 14, 2010 by pastorerichann in Quotables
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 I’ve meditated through a number of books by Andrew Murray in recent months along with my daily time of scripture devotions. I appreciate Murray as a devotional author though, like with so many others, I may not agree with him on every finer point of doctrine. This excerpt from “Absolute Surrender” spoke to me:

“Religious self-effort always ends in sinful flesh. What was the state of those Galatians? Striving to be justified by the works of the law. And yet they were quarreling and in danger of devouring one another. Count up the expressions that the apostle uses to indicate their want of love, and you will find more than twelve – envy, jealously, bitterness, strife, and all sorts of expressions. Read in the fourth and fifth chapters what he says about that. You see how they tried to serve God in their own strength, and they failed utterly. All this religous effort resulted in failure. The power of sin and the sinful flesh got the better of them, and their whole condition was one of the saddest that could be thought of”  … “if we think of how much… there is unlovingness and temper and sharpness and bitterness … and how much there is of envy and jealousy and sensitiveness, and pride, then we are compelled to say: ‘Where are the marks of the presence of the Spirit of the Lamb of God?'”

– From Andrew Murray (1828-1917) “Absolute Surrender” pp. 88-89

Eggsploitation – the film

Posted: October 14, 2010 by pastorerichann in Music and Movies, Social Issues

Thanks to everyone for the help and turnout to see the “I AM” film. Here’s another film coming out which should stir the fires of thinking (and debate). An article and links about the film can be found right here.

I AM movie review

Posted: October 6, 2010 by pastorerichann in Music and Movies
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An old Christian songwriter once crooned “why should the devil have all the good music?

An appropriate question for our time might be “why should the devil have all the good movies?

I’m thankful there are Christian filmmakers (many with only limited funding, backgrounds, experience in cinematography) who are taking the plunge into the film-making world. I’m confident in the future it will be the norm for films produced by Christians to be headlining right next to other films (in a similar vein of how, these days, there are numerous Christian bands getting equal billing as other bands). I’m also confident that films produced by Christians will one day match, in the least, the quality and creativity of those produced by their secular peers (something we often forget in our Christian circles is that secular filmmakers weren’t always producing films with the same prowess as they are today – in fact, you can go here  to get a glimpse of Steven Spielberg’s first film).

Enter John Ward, someone who has had a certain amount of industry background and also some experience in producing Christian media. For those who don’t know, he is one of the creators of the “Liquid” DVD study series on Thomas Nelson publishing and Navigators Press. Ward hails from the Mariner’s Church in Orange County, California, where he is a High School student worker and small group leader. He (along with Todd Ziele, and Mariner’s church associate pastor Jeff Pries) recently caught a vision to move beyond the Liquid DVD series and attempt to produce a feature length, faith-based film. Thus, we have the birth of “I AM” the movie.

“I AM” is a kind of parable about the 10 commandments being played out in modern day life (set in Los Angeles, Ca.). The approach of the film is intended to be contemplative and somewhat moody, with the goal of prompting viewers to think and discuss the subject matter. I want to say that on my first viewing of the film I was a little taken aback by one of the initial plot subjects because I perceived it to be somewhat over the top (and maybe a bit… corny). Keep in mind that I was born in Los Angeles (county), lived most of my life in California, and often stereotypes abound that are far from accurate regarding mainstream life on the west coast. However, after some dialogue with others and doing some research on my own, I discovered that the subject matter of this particular plot line is very much a cutting-edge issue right now. To keep this from being a spoiler, I’ll let you decide for yourself if you’d like to go to this link to read more about it. Certainly this is yet to be “mainstream” in any locale, but the character in the film is clearly portrayed as one of the jet-set elite as opposed to an everyday Joe or Jane. With this in mind, I commend the filmmakers for tapping into a theme which can prompt dialogue about not only its ethical implications but also the various worldview ideologies surrounding it. Aside from a couple of weaker acting moments toward the beginning of the film (and my own subjective preference for the font and words of the Decalogue to be presented differently), I found the film ultimately to be thought-provoking and very much worth my time. Though one of the commandment applications (on “graven images”) seemed a little vague, most of the others were not only clear but also poignant and convicting. I found the intertwining of the themes of “stealing” and “coveting” to be especially powerful. Furthermore, the voluntary restitution and making amends exampled is a timely contrast to the scratch and claw backstabbing portrayed in another recent film release (“The Social Network” – based on the alleged true story of the founders of Facebook). Some professional film critics will likely try and debunk it along the lines of borrowing techniques and formulas, but anyone watching a fair amount of secular movies will have to concede that this is pretty standard fair in most films – and in virtually every art form (I was just thinking recently; How many times is Alfred Hitchcock’s “Rear Window” theme going to be regurgitated by Hollywood?). Some Christian critics will likely be expecting an approach more along the lines of “Facing the Giants” and “Fireproof.” Personally, I appreciate the film-makers breaking away from that and placing their own fingerprints on this project.  

In all, Ward and company have produced a solid, entertaining, life-challenging film (with a strong sound-track), and we’ll be anticipating more from them in the future as a welcome addition to the Christian movie scene. They’re also to be commended for the free advance promo DVDs being made available to churches.

We’ll be showing the film (for free) this Sunday night (October 10, 5pm) at Cornerstone Community Church – 120 Northwestern Ave – Chariton, Iowa  (641) 774 – 5683

 -Eric Hann