What the first MCU Spider-Man soundtrack taught me about the nature of evil

[Note, 2/17/22: A link in this post was messed up. It’s been fixed!] A month or so ago, Spider-Man: No Way Home conquered the box office, and it seems the right time to unleash this observation I’ve been holding on to since Tom Holland’s first time headlining as the webslinger. (Not counting Captain America: Civil War. That’s why I said “headlining.” Details are important!) I wish I could take full credit for it, and I’d give full credit for the notice if I could, but it apparently began with some Reddit post back in 2017 or so and I’ve since lost any link to the original post.

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“They are fighting over the deck chairs on the Titanic…”

The Church published a fantastic sermon by Mr. Rod McNair that he gave a couple of years ago here in Charlotte titled “What Cause Are You Fighting For?” that is really helpful in helping us find perspective. He emphasized that we live in a world in which people are not only rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic while the ship is going down—they are fighting over who owns the chairs.

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God’s Complicated Book

Every once in a while, when I asked my mom a question about the Bible, she would think for a minute, and give me an answer that sort of made sense to me, but not really. I would respond with another question, and she would go “Hmmmm” for a second, before saying, “I’m not sure, honestly. We might have to ask a minister about that one.”

That used to startle me—and frustrate me a little, too. “What?! Mom doesn’t even know?! But she’s supposed to be the Bible genius! She went to Ambassador College! They were supposed to teach her everything! What madness is this?!”

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Great animated video: Is the origin of life already solved?

Credit to Mr. Weston, who pointed me to this video. I love this channel and its videos, but I did not know this one was out.

When you hear people spin tales of how life began as a mix of chemicals somewhere a long time ago and how that is totally, totally, totally believable and that it has even been shown scientifically how it is possible, you can discard such smoke and mirrors. This well-done little video demonstrates why you should ignore them because the science does not say what too many claim it says…

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Some Thoughts on Reputation

Before I was in the ministry, I worked for an online retailer. During my first year-and-a-half at the company, I managed the customer service department. We hired mostly young people in their late teens and early twenties. For many of them, it was their first job after finishing high school or college.

Over the course of hiring for the various customer service positions, I received many resumes. Some were creative and others were simple records of education and previous experience.

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A lesson from my bonsai tree (well, the pot)

He Who Is Cursed To Kill All The Plants learns a little something from an innovation in the pot of his bonsai tree…

“There is no vice which lacks a defense…”

I have a book with some thoughts from stoic philosophers that I look through occasionally. The Stoics weren’t perfect, and the extremes of some of their thinking were off. But the best of them did not fit many of the stereotypes we read. One of them, Seneca, is often thought to have been a friend of the Apostle Paul, and ancient letters they supposedly exchanged are out there, but most good accounts hold that the letters are fakes.

That said, something I read this morning caught my eye. By one man’s translation, Seneca once wrote “There is no vice which lacks a defense.” The rest of the quote goes into how it is easier to tackle bad habits early in life instead of later, and that would be a great post for another time. But this is the part that grabbed my attention, and it is very biblical.

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