We did our annual trip to the Dakota County Fair Wednesday night. Typically we go on a night when we can take in the demolition derby but no such luck this year. We had to settle for Extreme Bull-riding. Since neither of us have ever been to anything resembling a rodeo we thought it might be fun to see what it was all about while adding a little culture to our lives. And this was to be 'extreme'! How cool would that be?
I was half expecting a guy to come out riding two bulls at one time. We were in for nothing of the sort.
I have to say that it was actually a little sad and at times bordering on either pathetic or cheesy; I'm not sure which. Sad because some of the bulls were clearly past their prime. One in particular that walked (not sprang as you might expect) out of the chute carrying its rider, then laid down in the dirt after four or five paces. I'm quite sure I could've ridden that poor guy. Pathetic or cheesy because the rodeo clown conversing with the crowd via a wireless mic had a mic that kept cutting out making it difficult for his jokes to have any chance at all.
We sat and watched for 45 minutes before bailing, opting to meet Rachel and her friend Tony who were also at the fair. The four of us spent the rest of the night together taking in the exhibits. That was much more fun.
There's going to be a same-sex marriage amendment on the ballot here in Minnesota in November. Same-sex marriage is already unrecognized in our state but apparently that isn't good enough for some. We need an amendment to make it indisputably so. Supporters of the amendment are quick to point to the Bible and its teachings for direction in this matter and this is what troubles me. Yes, the Bible says that marriage is between a man and a woman but it also gives some examples that aren't so tidy as that.
I'm not one to disrespect God's word but I am one who really wants to understand what it is I'm reading. I don't mean to offend anyone with what follows but if my blog is to be an honest assessment of my thoughts over the years I'd be doing a diservice to it by omitting what follows.
A friend on Facebook posted the graphic to the left on his Facebook wall a few days ago. It really struck me because it's this sort of thing that I've been wrestling with so much lately.
The Old Testament verse that's given me the most difficulty over the years is Deuteronomy 22 verses 28-29. It pretty much defines marriage as between a rapist and his victim. Say What? Numbers 31 verses 17-18 refers to the conquering of the Midianites by the Israelites. I can only conclude that marriage here is defined as between a conqueror and his plunder. You most certainly won't hear people lift up these verses in support of how the Bible defines marriage. How do we so easily pick and choose which scripture we're going to latch onto to make our point? I've heard the arguments/reasons for why the above mentioned practices were acceptable at the time but I don't agree with those conclusions. The Old Testament is also full of examples of men having more than one wife in addition to many concubines. Would this too be an example of the Bible's definition of marriage?
It's not my intention here to throw stones. I just want to understand.
In Leviticus 18 Moses gives many examples of unacceptable sexual practices but never once does he mention molestation of a daughter by her father. Why is that? It would seem to me that that would be one of the more common abuses both then and now but Moses makes no mention of it. Why?
I can only conclude (and I really dislike that this is where I'm at) that the words Moses penned were more than God's words. I sincerely believe that Moses editorialized some with God's laws and that we're not getting a true reading of what God intended.
I'm sorry but I can come to no other conclusion.
I'm struggling to make sense. I hope I'm just not getting it. I hope there's an explanation out there that will clear all of this up for me but I don't think there is. I think this is something I'm going to have to somehow learn to accept. Something that I'll never be able to understand in my lifetime but to not let it disrupt my faith-walk more than it already has.
If anyone reading this has struggled with these same thoughts and has been able to come to a personal acceptance I'd be so appreciative of your thoughts or comments.
There's an opposing campaign to the marriage amendment in Minnesota that is picking up steam. I asked Tammy if it would be okay for me to place one of their lawn-signs in our yard but she would rather that I didn't. I can respect that. We'll soon be hosting our small-group from church on Thursday nights and I don't want my views clouding our gathering. This is my personal struggle and I need to remember that.
But, I will most certainly be sporting an Obama/Biden lawn-sign. This lilly-white neighborhood of mine cries out for it!