at the risk of opening up a BIG can of worms (remember a few years back when we all got into a HUGE debate over 'Christian' and 'secular' artists?), i thought this was good to read.......

They'll know we are Christians by our fish?

I was driving in downtown Chicago last week, where traffic seems to be our No. 1 pastime—even ahead of baseball (go Sox!). In my mind-numbed auto stupor, I noticed that the car ahead of me had that little fish on the back (you know, the ichthus?) Really, I couldn't help but notice, not because I'm automatically drawn to Christian symbolism, but because the driver rudely cut me off in traffic without using a turn signal.

Don't get me wrong. I'm sure my driving habits have offended others at some point too. None of us are perfect. But the car fish is one of those everyday cultural items that stir mixed feelings in me. At time I'm filled with good cheer when I see it—"Ah, there goes a brother or sister in Christ. God bless!" And admit it: When a driver with a fish on his car is courteous in traffic, you conclude that they were nice because they were a Christian, as "proven" by the fish, right?

If that's true, then we need to accept the downside of the fish. It brands us as a Christian, and that means when we pull a fast one in traffic, another driver may think, There goes another rude and arrogant Christian. There's great responsibility in wearing the fish, and from my driving experiences, not enough Christians take it seriously.

Should that be any different from wearing the name "Christian" in our everyday living? This directly relates to the whole secular vs. sacred debate. I think some Christian artists are reluctant to be called "Christian artists" because they're afraid that in the spotlight, they will occasionally slip up and misrepresent Christ. It's easy to think, Yes, but we're all family in Christian music—we show grace to each other when we make mistakes—whether in traffic or in the mainstream. Right? Tell that to artists like Amy Grant, P.O.D., Sixpence None the Richer, and Switchfoot.

It's something to consider, the responsibility of being labeled for Christ. As it pertains to music, I can see it either way. Whether or not artists are publicly identified as "Christian artists," I can't stress enough that the emphasis be on their conduct, and not on their label. Personally, I'm not the type who calls much attention to myself with symbols and such. I'd rather be labeled a Christian by my words and actions—that people know me as a Christian by my love, not my shortcomings or my advertising.
~ Russ Breimeier

i thought that he makes a wonderful point in this short article...... not about the distinction between what makes a artist Christian or not, or even how the Christian community has treated bands that have "crossed over", but about how ppl will label and watch us if we declare ourselves as Christ's followers. isn't it scary? if ppl know that we belong to Christ, how much more will they watch us and point it out when we do wrong?! i mean, we're human too! and we mess things up each and every day. it still surprises me that God would choose such frail, fallible creatures to be the bearers of His truth.

is it at all fair for us to be singled out like this? no one's ever said that God's way was an easy path...... and life, needless to say, is NOT fair (no matter how much we wish it was sometimes!). we shouldn't let fear stop us, because we are not called to cower in the corner, afraid to show the world the precious gift we've been given...... and God has not given us a spirit of fear! definitely easier said than done though....... :I

Father, make me brave for You.

"The books or the music in which we thought the beauty was located will betray us if we trust to them; it was not in them, it only came through them, and what came through them was longing. These things --- the beauty, the memory of our own past --- are good images of what we really desire; but if they are mistaken for the thing itself they turn into dumb idols, breaking the hearts of their worshippers. For they are not the thing itself; they are only the scent of a flower we have not found, the echo of a tune we have not heard, news from a country we have not visited."
~C.S. Lewis

this wonderful snippet was cited in a book i'm currently reading, which looks at the roots of the ecological crisis the world finds itself in today. it paints such a striking image of truth in my mind...... the book uses this to make a point: present-day society, if they choose to spare it a thought at all, worship nature itself, instead of worshipping nature's Creator, the ultimate artist whose genius is reflected in His creation. and this doesn't merely apply to the way we've idolized nature. look at all that we've glorified.... mere things and people that don't deserve our worship! no wonder we're never satisfied.... no wonder we're always coming up with newer, flashier gimicks to distract ourselves! how can one feel satisfaction when you aren't even looking to the source for the answer? what a wonderful wake-up call. i'm appreciating c.s. lewis' writings more and more.... ^-^

what dumb idols do you find upon the pedestal of your heart?


so after a year and a little bit, i had to bid tristy farewell...... and clara too. was a little sad...... i loved my dear fishies! (especially tristy... since he was really my first pet) but at least my sister didn't bawl unconsolably this time. :P got another fishie (so our tank won't go to waste, Mum says)..... wasn't too keen on getting pushed into replacing my pets so soon at first, but i'm loving my new fish! i've always wanted a betta fish (ie: a fighting fish!)..... and he's so gorgeous! his name's 'kaji'..... that's japanese for 'flame'. here's to hoping that i can take good care of kaji! :)


i neeeed to take a break.................. -_-

gawd how i HATE models....... there's a very very very good reason why i'm not an ecologist.

too bad this thing is due tomorrow. and i would hate to have to wake up and deal with THIS again. so here i am at 2:45 am....... *blaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah.* @_@


Tristy's being all still again....... <=( still eating though, which is definitely good. Mum has a hypothesis..... maybe Tristy's.... pregnant?! no waaaaaay! does that mean tristy's really a girl?! and that Tristy and clara....... oh good grief.

I guess we'll see........