Saturday, February 10, 2007

World's Best Hot Dog

Last week Leesa and I vacationed in Phoenix. We drove to Sedona to see the red rock formations. While in Sedona we came across The Black Cow Cafe. I saw a sign that proclaimed, "World's Best Hot dog." Believe me that caught my attention. After getting Leesa to take my picture by the sign we went inside to explore the veracity of their claim, that is, I went in to eat a hot dog. I walked up to the counter and declared I wanted the world's greatest hot dog. The lady said they only serve them during lunch time. It was 3:30 in the afternoon. While processing my feelings of denial I asked her when was the earliest these legendary dogs would be ready in the morning. She said at 11:00 AM to my dismay because I knew we needed to leave Sedona by 9:00. Why couldn't they serve them for breakfast? Surely the best hot dog on the planet could be eaten any time of the day. When my denial began to dissipate I realized that no hot dog no matter how good was worth pleading for. I told Leesa on the way out of the cafe that I wouldn't let this ruin the rest of our vacation. I did enjoy the rest of our time in Arizona. No hot dog, no matter what it's claim to fame, is worth that. However, for some unexplainable reason I keep dreaming of black cows eating hot dogs. Go figure!

Monday, January 1, 2007

Our Good Nature?

One of my favorite things to do on New Years day is to watch the Tournament of Roses parade. This year’s theme was “Our Good Nature” with George Lucas as the grand marshal. A song was written just for this year’s theme. The Tournament of Roses president, Paul Holman, commented on this song, "The special song written just for the Tournament of Roses celebrates 'Our Good Nature' in a truly unique way. The show depicts how the natural beauty of flowers and the good nature of man go hand in hand."

As I listened to this song I immediately recognized the flaw in this theme. The Bible makes it clear that our human nature is not inherently good but evil. The prophet Jeremiah declares, “The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?” (Jeremiah 17:9 NIV)

When people leave God out of the picture their only hope is to believe that man is inherently good. The solution is to somehow fan into the flames the burning embers of goodness in every person through a better education, a good environment and positive reward system.

But the Scriptures indicate that mankind does not have any burning embers of goodness to fan into flame. Every person left to their own will move into the direction of evil. We are sinners not because we sin; rather, we sin because we are sinners.

The bad news gets worse – there is no cure. The only hope is found in Jesus Christ and the transformation a personal relationship with Him brings.