Wednesday, April 23, 2014

If divorce is a sin, and being gay is a sin, why do we greet one with sadness and the other with celebration?

Somebody posted a picture/story on the facebook where (allegedly) a pastor was preaching that being gay was a sin, and the congregation agreed with a chorus of "amens." Then th epastor said that you know what else is a sin? Divorce. And the same congregation got entirely quiet.

The point of the story, I suppose, was to point out that we all sin, and we shouldn't judge each other based on perceived sins.

What I don't understand is that in most cases, news of a couple divorcing is greeted with muted feelings and "ooh, that stinks for them. What about the children?" Whereas when news of someone coming out as gay is celebrated and welcomed by all the open-minded (except for people who have different views) people as great news of critical importance that must be shared and discussed and accepted and embraced.

So on one hand, there seems to be tepid agreement that divorce and homosexuality are not part of God's plan. It seems that, when pressed, people will admit that being gay probably misses God's mark. Yes, there are the arguments that Jesus never came out and said "gay is not the way," but there are other words, deeds, and actions that indicate that that lifestyle is not completely in accordance with God's law. And yes, the commandment to love one another trumps everything, but not to the point of ignoring and condoning blatant sin.

And so we return to the disappointment associated with the news of hearing that a couple divorces, contrasted with the enthusiasm of the bravery when one comes out as being gay. If both are sins, how can one be welcomed with open arms and the other be quietly accepted with a sad shaking of one's head?

We still love the divorced family, just as we love the openly gay people. At the end of the day, we here are not the final judge of any of it. We accept the divorced ones, we accept the gay ones. Oh, but we can't counsel the gay ones as we counsel those going through divorce, because the gay ones were born that way. And if you're born that way, you get special acceptance and dispensation for your sins.

Sorry to waste your time :-\

Tank 385 Already!

So I put in more gas to the Mighty Corolla this morning, and it worked out to be 36.94 mpg for the tank.

A couple of weeks ago I was so certain that I was going to sell the Mighty Corolla to Carmax that I only put in 4 gallons. It was the first time I have not put in a full tank at the gas station. But, I didn't sell the car to Carmax and a few days later put in a full tank and here we are.

Last year we moved to a new (to us) house. This year, we are adding another licensed driver to the family (darn birthdays!). It is becoming apparent that our future will involve more mulch and trees and rocks and things to maintain the new (to us) yard, and while the minivan can accommodate such things, it is a pain to remove the center-row chairs to make more space in the back, and it's also a pain to clean it all up inside afterwards.

My wife had decided that this fall the new-licensed driver shall inherit the world's fastest minivan, our 2008 Toyota Sienna, and she (my wife) will acquire a new vehicle that has all the comfort and convenience of the minivan but isn't a minivan. So she bought a GMC Terrain, a small SUV with a smaller engine that gets better fuel economy. Indeed, as the minivan struggles to achieve 20 mpg per tank, this Terrain is likely to get 25-28 mpg over the same roads, an increase of at least 25% in fuel economy.

I have "decided" to use this opportunity to replace the Mighty Corolla with a small pickup truck, like a Ford Ranger. It appears I may be able to sell the Corolla for enough money that I can buy a similarly old Ranger with the proceeds. Or get an old beater and leave money in my pocket. The 4-cylinder Ranger can get up to 28 mpg highway. The Corolla was advertised 32 highway, which I was easily able to beat, so it's probable that I could get about 30 mpg in a Ranger, which stil is almost a 20% decrease in my own mileage. And since I drive a lot more than my wife does, it's likely our consumption will increase. But if I remain timid of confrontation and selling and buying a car, I might stick with the Corolla for a while longer.

So the mileage experiment of the Mighty Corolla may be nearing its end. Or maybe not. We'll see what happens in th enext few weeks and months.