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Days of DTs for news junkies

December 3, 2008

I wouldn’t have taken myself for a blithering news junkie, but I have to acknowledge the signs. I become morose clicking through the nothingness. There isn’t anything there, and I click it on anyway. At least I’m not hallucinating: really, there’s nothing there.

Sure, there are terrorists in India, pirates no one seems willing or able to blow away with missiles, constant references to a president-elect who hasn’t been elected because the Electors haven’t voted yet, a cabinet of re-runs, cats being snatched by eagles, atheists who are so depressed they have to remember they don’t believe in anything so they start trying to dismember declarations of God’s existence, and, oh yes, the really astonishing news that we are really, truly, officially in a recession now. Oh, and La Jolla is still an expensive place to live, in case anyone forgot and tried to buy a few acres of waterfront there.

Laptop addict that I am, I finally recall that I have books.  In a recent article in The Banner of Truth, my pastor, Tom Lyon, quoting C. H. Spurgeon, avers that we should “never be found without a book nearby.”  Yes, and we should remember that our books are among us, and we among them.  I had to lay aside Gordon Clark a while in favor of picking up John Murray’s Commentary on Romans where I left off last year. There’s a glaring typo on the first page of Appendix A, miscasting Judah as Jacob. Through how many editions have the editors missed that one….I pick up Calvin’s Institutes during a tired part of the afternoon and find one of his meditations rather morbid.

I turn on KING FM and let their Baroque Christmas music displace the drear. The Cat is unjustly asleep. I roll him over and rub his belly; he licks my hand approvingly, stretches to his full 40 inches, and gets up to eat.  He requires so little of his environment.

I am still trying to figure out what is squeezing these atheists out of the tube all of a sudden. It’s as though they’re dormant, and then, cicada-like, they emerge and try to scour the land of life. Is it Christmas? Is it Kentucky Homeland Security’s reference to the state’s ultimate safekeeping resting in the providence of God? Is it the uncertainty of the times, perhaps with more visible Christian works, and more references to people’s reliance on God, causing unbelievers to feel surrounded by hostile forces? I don’t know, but they appear more organized, if as whacked as ever.

My own state’s Capitol has a nativity scene and a “Reason’s Greetings” from the local atheist chapter, reading, “There are no gods, no devils, no angels, no heaven or hell. There is only our natural world. Religion is but myth and superstition that hardens hearts and enslaves minds.” Well, res ipsa loquitur.

I suppose I have the sort of personality that thrives on a sense of things going on around me, whether or not I have any energy to participate in any of it. Right now, except for the destruction of my familiar surroundings as my husband rebuilds the shower in our suddenly indispensable second bathroom, nothing seems to be “going on,” or, at least, nothing that interests me.

But then I have to remember that the stuff that seems not to be going on is going on very much as usual; it has, for a time, simply ceased to interest me. I have to remember that’s because those “morbid” things Calvin touches on are really the bread of Christian life. That’s why we overlook the typos and read through Murray because of his engaging, enlightened substance. That’s why we can expect to open our laptops, click through 60 news sources in 60 seconds, and see, in the words of poet Wallace Stevens, “nothing that is not there, and the nothing that is.”

  1. December 3, 2008 10:33 am


    And Res Ipsa applies to more than the atheist’s state of mind these days. It’s almost as if the stones themselves are beginning to shout.

  2. ngoldfarb permalink
    December 3, 2008 11:36 am

    u r gr8

    want to exchange links and cross link?

    u remind me of my favorite political quote

    “If elections changed anthing, they would make them illegal”

    Will you support my proposed two new government programs?

    Thanks, Nancy,

    I don’t “exchange” links, but your front page post is certainly engaging, and I hope people read it from here. I’ll visit some more, and if I find we share a consistent bond, I’ll place you among my companeros.–L.

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