Celebrating Christmas Like a Pagan

Santa putting gifts under the treeFacebook

Recently, I stirred up a bit of controversy on Facebook with this post:

I am a live and let live kind of guy (so I will support your freedom of religion), but the Bible does not have kind words for witchcraft, and for those practicing it, it’s at best a Monkey’s Paw (with eternal ramifications). https://www.christianpost.com/news/witches-outnumber-presbyterians-in-the-us-wicca-paganism-growing-astronomically-227857/

P.S. Paganism is no more correct, so no one misunderstands my not initially mentioning it.

I imagine to those sitting here there is nothing too shocking in that statement, especially given I am a Christian minister. Additionally, it’s 100% accurate. To show that, let’s look at Revelation 9:20-21:

The rest of humankind, who weren’t killed by these plagues, didn’t change their hearts and lives and turn from their handiwork. They didn’t stop worshipping demons and idols made of gold, silver, bronze, stone, and wood—idols that can’t see or hear or walk. 21 They didn’t turn away from their murders, their spells and drugs, their sexual immorality, or their stealing.

Although there are plenty other verses reflecting on God’s disdain for witchcraft and paganism, that one covers both, doesn’t it? Personally, I think it is summarized by the first of the Ten Commandments:

3 “You shall have no other gods before me (Exodus 20:3).

Witchcraft and paganism put other gods (little g’s) before the one true God (big G). Continue reading Celebrating Christmas Like a Pagan

Resolutions and Goals

Rudyard Kipling quote

Beware of overconcern for money, or position, or glory. Someday you will meet a man who cares for none of these things. Then you will know how poor you are.

The new year is here.

Neil deGrass Tyson may be right and it “is a cosmically arbitrary event, carrying no Astronomical significance at all,” but there is something to be said about starting fresh…and making some resolutions.

Or, rather, making resolutions and establishing goals.

Mine for this year:

  • To better know the “man who cares for none of” “money, or position, or glory.”
  • To pray more often and more fervently.
  • To get back down to 205 pounds.
  • To read more (and not just because starting university coursework on January 8 will increase it).
  • To spend less time on social media.
  • To be kinder on social media.
  • To write at least one letter a week.
  • To love. Truly love. Everyone.

Two late additions:

  • Write more.
  • Start work on a children’s book (tween/teen).

Happy New Year! May 2018 bless you and yours…and if you do not know the Man I speak of, may the Holy Spirit draw you to Him, change your heart, and add you to His fold.

Love to you.

Happy New Year (2017)

2017 in blocksI suspect I was not the only one to start off 2017 staying up way too late, but after about six hours of sleep I began the new year in one of the best ways possible.

Reading Scripture.

Many of us at the Strasburg Church of Christ are taking the blessed trek through all 66 books together in 2017, and today’s reading was Genesis 1-3. Because the kids will be joining us on this journey, I am at least beginning it in the version they are using, the New Revised Standard Version. I am glad I did, because in the first chapter of the Bible there was a very cool pairing that happened frequently.

“God said” and “And that’s exactly what happened.”

If there is one thing that history has proven, it is that when God says that He is going to do something, or that something is going to happen…well…

That’s exactly what is going to happen.

My prayer for you is that you will have faith in the One who is so reliable, even when what He promised was at such great cost to Himself.

That is, when He said He would provide a Savior and sent His only begotten Son to die on the cross so we could spend eternity with Him.

Happy New Year everyone! Grace, peace, and love to you all.

2017 New Year's clock

Returning to the First New Year’s Day

Happy New Year with angel

How Many?

Just curious…how many New Year’s Days do you think there have been?

[Wait for answers.]

Personally, based on the Bible, I think it has been less than ten thousand. I know that seems to contradict the geological record and other scientific evidence of the age of the universe, but science also cannot explain how Jesus Christ was resurrected.

“And if Christ has not been raised, then [my] preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain” (1 Corinthians 15:14).

Christ was raised and your faith is not in vain…so let’s trust Scripture when it comes to the age of the universe, of the earth, of humanity…and it is difficult to believe things have been around for millions or billions of years based on what is written in the 66 books.

However, regardless of how many New Year’s Days there have been, today’s we label as the one for 2017. Mathematically, what is special about that number?

That’s right, it is a prime number!

Of course, that doesn’t mean it is going to be special…but the mathematician in me likes it. 🙂

The First

2017 will likely not be special…no worse than most and no better than most…but there are some truly monumental New Year’s Days. Today we’ll quickly talk about four of them, starting to the one spoken of in Genesis 1:1-5:

1 In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. 2 The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.

3 And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. 4 And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day.


Before God created, there was nothing.

Think about that.

When I was young, I could get a shiver up my back by pondering, “If there is such thing as nothing, why do we exist?”

I suspect I could still create that shiver if I focused on it.

But, before the first New Year’s Day, there was absolutely nothing.

Continue reading Returning to the First New Year’s Day

Now that You Have Blown It

New Year’s Resolutions

Epic fail signWe are 10 days into the new year…and here is hoping that it has started off great for everyone sitting here in front of me. I know the Lord continues to bless my family and me in 2016.

How many of you made New Year’s resolutions? [Wait for hands to raise.] Anyone willing to share one or two things they’ve resolved for 2016? [Wait for answers.]

Are you interested in what other people resolve? I was…and for my tween/teen class last week we went straight to the Internet to find out. Now, I realize that I have to be cautious with that and I pay heed to something a famous president said said that I found on the web. Abraham Lincoln is quoted as advising…

“Don’t believe everything you read on the Internet.” 🙂

However, I think Nielsen is pretty safe, and their list of top resolutions for 2015 were:1

Stay fit and healthy 37%
Lose weight 32%
Enjoy life to the fullest 28%
Spend less, save more 25%
Spend more time with family and friends 19%
Get organized 18%
Will not make any resolutions 16%
Learn something new/new hobby 14%
Travel more 14%
Read more 12%

Ignoring the sad commentary on society that not a single one of the top ten resolutions (based on Nielsen’s survey between December 29, 2014 and January 2, 2015) were spiritual…are most of them are at least okay?

If you made any resolutions in 2016…were they included in Nielsen’s list? I had a four that showed up in one form or another…lose weight, be better with money, read more, and get my technical and general ham radio licenses (which would fall under “learn something new/new hobby”).

Continue reading Now that You Have Blown It

Merry Christmas!

Happy Holidays lights

The stockings are emptied; the gifts are open. What remains is more important: time with loved ones.

Merry Christmas signPerhaps the greatest gift the Lord gave us in 2015 is a new home in a new town. From the first day we visited Strasburg, Colorado, we have seen the beauty of its land and its people. That beauty is what inspired, and continues to inspire, Strasburg Rocks!

Happy Holidays lights by the Strasburg Convenience StoreWe are slowly unearthing all that Strasburg and the surrounding area has to offer; it is like unwrapping magnificent gifts year-round. One of the more recent discoveries was the annual Christmas celebration downtown. We were remiss then in not photographing the beautiful decorations along Strasburg’s main thoroughfare, but hopefully have made it up with a video of driving through the town late Christmas Eve (or early this Christmas morning, depending on your perspective):


Wooden carolers in front of the Strasburg Post OfficeNow, we stated that the greatest gift God blessed us with in 2015 was a home (not just a house) in Strasburg…but, of course, it pales in comparison to the greatest gift ever bestowed; one that was for all who will accept it. The 50th anniversary of “A Charlie Brown Christmas” makes it apropos to remember that sacrifice from above with the same words that Linus used when Charles Shultz bucked precedent and included these verses in a Christmas special: Continue reading Merry Christmas!

Christmas Album “Must Haves” (2015 Version)

Countdown2.Christmas vinyl albumI seem to do this post later and later each holiday season…but I did start listening to Christmas music earlier in 2015! 🙂

Either way, here is my annual “Christmas Album ‘Must Haves.'” Year-to-year it doesn’t vary much, but I’ve added a few, reorganized a bit, and made sure the links are up-to-date. Also, everything I mention here (plus a whole bunch more) plays on Countdown2.Christmas Radio, my year-round Internet Christmas radio station. I received an interesting note yesterday from a listener:

Who, What are you? We just found your station this morning. It is wonderful. Thank you for making our Christmas more enjoyable.

If you, like that person, enjoy classic, traditional Christmas music with some other great holiday tunes mixed in…then you’ll love Countdown2.Christmas Radio.

Well, enough of the preamble! Here is 2015’s Christmas Album “Must Haves” divided into groups in that will help you, if you are just starting you collection, to know what to get first.

Top 5:

Continue reading Christmas Album “Must Haves” (2015 Version)

Happy Thanksgiving!

Church in the fallAlthough this year has had its ups and downs (perhaps a bit more on the downs side)…God’s blessings keep the score so far in the positive I have no excuse but…on this Thanksgiving day…to be…

Thankful. 🙂

I am thankful for my family (both biological and church), my employer (and those I work with), the town I live in (and its great residents), and…

The list could go on ad infinitum.

Oh, and I am thankful for you my blog readers and/or sermon/broadcast listeners and/or social media followers. You are truly a blessing from the Lord.

Ultimately, the greatest thing I have to be thankful for is also the greatest thing the world (including you) has to be thankful for…

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him (John 3:16-17, English Standard Version).

Of course, it doesn’t do you any eternal good if you don’t have faith in Jesus. My prayer is that you will find that trust in the One who gave His life so you could spend eternity with Him.

Regardless of where your relationship with the Lord is…Happy Thanksgiving from Traditores and Traditores Higher Frequency!

Happy New Year 2015: “The Lord bless you and keep you…”

Happy New Year with angelHappy New Year everyone! I haven’t decided on my list of resolutions, but this post will fit two of them:

  1. To spend more time truly with my family
  2. To post more regularly on Traditores

How it fulfills #2 is somewhat obvious :-), and it’ll meet #1 in that I am keeping it short and then I’m going to go exercise with my oldest son.

Before I go, I have two New Year’s wishes for you:

The Lord bless you and keep you;
the Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you;
the Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace (Numbers 6:24-26).


May he grant you your heart’s desire
and fulfill all your plans (Psalm 20:4).

Of course, I only wish the second one if your heart’s desire is good for you. 🙂

May your 2015 be blessed in the Lord.

Wishing You a Crazy Christmas

NativityLast night I saw some posts on Facebook where people lamented they were having trouble getting into the Christmas spirit. I cannot claim to have that issue given, this year, I created a somewhat popular Christmas radio station and…of course!…have provided my yearly Christmas album must haves. 🙂

However, over the past day or so as I thought of what I would write for my yearly Christmas message, I was “coming up short.” What to write about? What could I say beyond what has already been said?  In reality there is little I could say that hasn’t already been said by those far more gifted with words, and I still like the simplicity of what I wrote in 2013. Luckily, this morning (once again) Charlie Daniels tweeted something I thought worth sharing, even on a day as special as this:

My Christmas wish
May your table be bountiful, your cup overflowing and your heart brimming with the peace that passes all understanding.

Continue reading Wishing You a Crazy Christmas

Christmas Album “Must Haves” (2014 Version)

Countdown2.Christmas vinyl albumAnother Thanksgiving has past, which means I can openly listen to Christmas music again!

Time now for my yearly list of Christmas album “must haves”…which is alway last year’s with some tweaks. I mean, you don’t honestly expect my taste in Christmas music to change drastically year-to-year do you?! 🙂

Now…before I unveil this year’s “winners”…I should note that if you love Christmas music as much as I do, every album listed below can be heard on my brand new Countdown2.Christmas Radio station. As of writing this post, it has only been around a couple weeks…and…for instance…at one point today we had 246 listeners all over the world. Give it a listen, will you?

Finally…I realize this list is growing…and if you are starting your collection it might be a bit much to ask you to get them all. So, this year I’m going to give you the top ten-ish in groups of five-ish. Hopefully that will be more helpful than confusing. 🙂

Top 5:

Continue reading Christmas Album “Must Haves” (2014 Version)

Good “Happy Easter” News

A Happy Eastertide (angel with flowers)Some good "Happy Easter" news:

"China on course to become ‘world’s most Christian nation’ within 15 years"

And, on this day we celebrate the empty tomb, may we all be as wise as those described by…

Officially, the People’s Republic of China is an atheist country but that is changing fast as many of its 1.3 billion citizens seek meaning and spiritual comfort that neither communism nor capitalism seem to have supplied. (Emphasis mine.)

Hat tip to Instapundit.