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Showing posts from January, 2009

Eduardo Verastegui's Most Noble Moment

Eduardo Verastegui is one of the most physically attractive men to ever be captured on film. Known to millions as "The Mexican Brad Pitt," Verastegui had it all. He began his career at age 18 as a model and also a singer for a boy band in Mexico. He soon starred in a series of novelas (Spanish soap operas) and then finally hit the big screen in 2003 as a triple-timing playboy in Chasing Papi. His star was on the rise. But Eduardo Verastegui was empty.

Today, Eduardo Verastegui is a changed man. He no longer works as a model and refuses to participate in any projects he feels are "offensive to God." Today, Verastegui is one of the leading celebrity spokesmen against the abortion industry. In this touching video, he tells of his first experience at an abortion clinic. (Warning: The first 60 seconds of this video contain mild sensual images of Verastegui during his early career.)



What would make a man like Eduardo Verastegui, who had the whole world at his feet, give u…

The Treasure Principle

Before the month is out, I wanted to recommend another book. Randy Alcorn's The Treasure Principle is a small book with a big message -- one that will change the way you look at your finances. It has been marketed as a shorter version of Life, Possessions, and Eternity, but you'd never know the difference.

I first read this book last year while completing a seven month assignment that God gave me involving money. God asked me to anonymously donate a specific sum of money to a man who sinned against me and hurt me very deeply. In November 2007, I began my seven months of restitution. That same month, I started a blog called Reformed SHEology. It would be a chronicle of the things God has taught me about my own sinfulness, and how he has changed me from an angry woman who, in many ways, hated men -- to a woman who is deeply grieved over the blackness of my own heart.

At first, I only saw my restitution as payment for my own sin of anger. But by the end of the assignment, I rea…

Do Hard Things

My church is part of Sovereign Grace Ministries and so it is common for us to get first hand knowledge about some of the wonderful resources being produced by SGM-affiliated writers, teachers, and musicians. A few months ago, our executive pastor encouraged us to pick up a book written by twins Alex and Brett Harris, titled Do Hard Things. I am recommending this book as a tool in the fight to maintain positive change in a traditionally "take the easy way out" culture.

With its clever subtitle: "A Teenage Rebellion Against Low Expectations,"Do Hard Things is obviously geared toward adolescents, but is surely a must-read for people of all ages, especially since early on in the reading, the book addresses something called, "The Myth of Adolescence." The book explains that until the 1940's, there was no such thing as a "teenager." You were either a child, or you were an adult. Today, we have adolescents: people who want the pleasures and freed…

Perseverance of the Couch Potatoes

All my life, I hated to run. I could never understand why people would want to do such a thing. I never would run unless it was absolutely necessary, and even then, I knew that if I ever found myself in a situation where my life depended on it, I wouldn't stand a chance. I could barely last thirty seconds without feeling like I was going into cardiac arrest.

For some bizarre reason, I joined the junior varsity field hockey team in ninth grade. (Even more surprising is that I tried out and made it!) After-school practices were grueling. I can still remember running up and down the field, drilling with my partner, shooting on goal, practicing my scoops, and being completely exhausted. Then I'd hear the coach say, "I want three laps! Now!" I thought I was going to die. The cramp in my side was unbearable. My heart felt as though it would pound right out of my chest. Any minute, I was sure my calf muscles would burst right through the back of my legs the same way a frank…

Time Heals No Wounds

Ten years ago, I witnessed my friend "Lila" go through the painful ordeal of ending her twelve-year friendship with "Karen." One afternoon, Karen erupted into a fit of irrational anger without warning and callously used Lila as a verbal punching-bag. Karen showed no restraint in unleashing all her unrelated frustrations upon Lila, and even went as far as to call her a "fat pig". Lila was an innocent bystander in the situation, and was very sensitive about her weight. Needless to say, she was crushed.

Lila tried her best to resolve the situation with Karen. The first thing she did was ask my opinion as to whether or not she had done anything that would render her responsible for what happened. (I assured her she had not.) She then poured her heart out to Karen in a letter, which she gave to me to proofread before sending. It was perhaps the most beautiful, loving, grace-filled letter I had ever read. I suddenly began to weep as I realized what a wonderfu…

The Lord's Table

Back in September our theme of the month was "True Beauty" and I had posted an article called, Do You Think I'm Fat? which discussed how we can sinfully become obsessed with our outward appearance. I was suggesting that we most likely do more criticizing than reality would dictate. However, in the event that one truly is a bit overweight, instead of complaining, perhaps something should be done about it. I never offered any suggestions for how one might go about overcoming her weight issues, but a sister named Donna had commented that she had great success with a Bible Study called "The Lord's Table," which is available through a ministry called Setting Captives Free. I had never heard of SCF, so I looked over the material. It seemed promising.

HOW IT WORKS
The Lord's Table is a free online course that is also available in book form. This course addresses the idea that overeating is nothing more than the long ignored, rarely mentioned sin of gluttony, and…

Why New Year's Resolutions Fail

What would you say if I told you that my New Year's Resolution for 2009 is to stop sinning? That's right: from this moment forward, I resolve to never sin again. What's so funny? You think I can't do it? Okay, go ahead and laugh, but this time I mean it. This time, I am really, really motivated!

Naturally, I have no such New Year's Resolution. The idea that I can stop sinning because I've decided I'm just not going to do it any more is silly. It's just as silly for me to isolate a specific sin and make that my New Year's Resolution: I'm going to stop coveting. I'm going to stop lusting. I'm going to start putting God above all else. How ridiculous! The reason this is silly is because it cannot be done. We cannot simply decide to stop sinning. Sin is a trap that ensnares us. If we could stop sinning on our own, there would be no need for a Savior.

Which brings me to this question. Why do we so often fail to keep our usual New Year's Res…

Bella

Happy New Year! We are kicking off 2009 with a theme of "Change". To illustrate what a changed life looks like, our Film of the Month is Bella, a contemporary story of faith, family, and friendship that is quite rare in today's modern cinema.

STATS
Year: 2006 (Rated PG-13)
Directed by Alejandro Monteverde
Starring Eduardo Verastegui and Tammy Blanchard
Setting: New York City, 2006.

Winner: Toronto Film Festival People's Choice Award, 2006.

Content warning: The story is centered around a woman who is considering having and abortion and this may be sensitive for certain viewers. Some images involving a car accident may be disturbing. Language is squeaky clean!

WHAT TO WATCH FOR
1. Very interesting Christian imagery and symbolism. There is an intriguing use of a headscarf in the film, as well as strong references to a butterfly. A blind homeless man holds a sign that reads, "God closed my eyes and now I can see." Some critics have commented on Jose's character as …