Friday, November 26, 2010

Friday links 11/26/2010

I hope everyone in the USA had a great Thanksgiving holiday! And perhaps yours is still ongoing through the rest of the weekend?

I came across one of Albert Einstein's famous things-said the other day: "The problems that exist in the world today cannot be solved by the level of thinking that created them." Oh that is so true! Unfortunately for the world, they are also going to take more than any human level of thinking to solve them, as well. Fortunately for the Christian, God has a solution for all the world's problems -- and He's given us our part of evangelism and truth-speaking to play (Martin Luther King Jr. once said: “We must speak with all the humility that is appropriate to our limited vision, but we must speak”) until He comes again to solve things once and for all. I pray the Lord will use this upcoming holiday season to help us to understand, appreciate, and give glory (only) to Him for our role, each day!

The documentary Kimjongilia, about North Korean people (including prison camp survivors) who have escaped (or at least tried) to escape that viciously demonic country didn't get great reviews, which I truly don't understand. It wasn't all glitzy-Hollywood -- but does it really need to be to help us see the huge need and incredible hope of these wonderful and most-oppressed people? For example, it is no exaggeration to pass on that the people of North Korea are literally taught to worship their "Supreme Leader" Kim Jong-il as the only god (and that's shown in a clip from one of their official propaganda films in the documentary  "Kimjongilia"). And human rights literally mean nothing there -- even children and innocent family members are sent to prison work camps to die, while the rest of the non-army population lives in eternal famine. If you want a taste of how had off this country is, type "North Korea" into Google Maps, tell it you want to see the "Satellite" view, and then zoom in over the cities and such. It really breaks my heart!

Ways you can help the North Koren people include ongoing prayer -- that the Lord will continue to reveal Himself to them, that He will protect those who belong to Him there from being caught and will instead use them mightily to spread the Good News of His Son Jesus, and that He will bless them all with an end to the horrors of their hideous oppression. And, although its really difficult to help inside North Korea (the whole place is locked down in deadly secrecy, and any caught spreading the Gospel or otherwise helping there face horrible punishments), Voice of the Martyrs helps the persecuted in North Korea when they are able. (See other things you can help them with here.) I've searched for charities helping the North Koreans, and not found any that I really trust -- many seem or are at least thought by others more knowledgeable than I to be a bit shady. If you know of or find any good ones, please let me know!

Back to the issues of the "First World": I was horrified to find out how easy it is to come up with all sorts of personal data online -- including your name, family members, pictures of your home, and so on. While this article shows how it's done as a way of helping us understand and better protect ourselves, you really don't have to "get" all the technicalities of it. Just the explanation and advice of what to do is just fine.

The fact that every time we ratchet up our level of industrial-food and drug eating we get sicker and fatter and weaker seems to never matter to those who worship what human beings can create more than what God has already created explicitly for our bodies (we're just told to ingest more and more industrial drugs and foods to "solve" our health issues -- and never to let our systems get back to the ways God created them to be fueled and run). This article, Would you eat a steak that came from a test tube? is interesting and disgusting, at the same time. (And my answer is "No, I will not").

Personally, I only worry about the upcoming chocolate shortage (not really ;-)

Great work by some folks in Colorado Springs who prove "asking the right question can be more important than anything you can tell someone." They asked random people if being Gay is a choice. When people said "Yes", they asked them "When did you choose to be straight?"

1,000 sqft secret chamber discovered in Indian National Library -- and I can't wait to find out what's inside! (I even set up a Google Alert to keep me informed as the story progresses.)

"For the last few weeks, zoo keepers have been training him to get in his transportation crate on his own." I guess so! Have fun, Tucker the Hippo!

From the look of the dog, it was just really hot and he climbed in there (probably with shorts on) to do a really thorough job cleaning out the inside of the trunk? Who says the world isn't also set up to keep us laughing?

These photos from the 2010 National Geographic Photo Contest are absolutely magnificent. My most favorites were #2 (Supercell going across Montana), #17 (Boise sunrise), #28 (Lightning crashes), and #37 (The power of childhood).

I already knew this from a friend who worked a long time for the USA post office, but now it's been documented: Mail carriers will abuse your package more if it's marked as "Fragile". Something to keep in mind when shipping, especially for the holidays.

Don't you just love heroes -- both the moral and the courageous kinds? Although those two things only rightfully go together, don't they!

Finally, here's an audio/MP3 link to a great talk by Frank Viola about just what the Apostles' doctrine really was to the early church, and what it should be to us today (If the link doesn't work, Google "theapostlesdoctrine_viola" and pick where you want to hear it from). Enjoy!

See you next week!