Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Red Supergiant

God is my favorite artist by far!

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Saturday, May 24, 2008

I am Indy

This Sunday is the 92nd Indianapolis 500 (10am on ABC). You better believe that I will be watching the excitement as 33 open-wheel cars battle it out at speeds well over 200 mph. Some might say that motor sports are nerdy or "hick" but that is lame. Boring to watch cars circle around and around an oval track? It's no more boring than watching nine innings of baseball on TV.

The #9 and #10 cars of the Target/Chip Ganassi racing team are out front this year as Scott Dixon has the pole while Dan Wheldon (my favorite driver) is in the second position. Sports Illustrated just did an article on Danica Patrick that said she is claiming that this is her year to win Indy. Haha fat chance is what I say, but we shall see. Danica is in the 5th position this year. To see the starting grid, click here.

In preparation of this year's Indy here is a video and some fascinating facts about Indy cars. These machines are truly spectacular! My dream one day is to get to drive in one. That would be sweet!

Did you Know? (taken from indycar.com)

* That the 3.5-liter, ethanol-powered engines of IndyCar Series cars produce more than 650 horsepower, nearly four times that of the average street car?

* That each of the eight pistons in an IndyCar Series engine travels nearly 1 mile up and down in the cylinder every minute?

* That each of the eight pistons in an IndyCar Series engine is subjected to a maximum acceleration of 70,000 times the force of gravity?

* That an IndyCar Series car accelerates from 0 to 100 mph in less than three seconds, more than nine seconds quicker than it takes a production Porsche 911 Turbo street car to reach the same speed?

* That a 1,530-pound IndyCar Series cars generates 5,000 pounds of downforce at 220 mph, enough to allow the car to run upside down if that speed is maintained?

* That the tread depth of an IndyCar Series tire is 3/32nds of an inch – slightly thicker than a credit card?

* That a front tire for the IndyCar Series weighs about 18 pounds - slightly less than the average weight of a 1-year-old?

* That, at speed, the tread area of the racing tires approaches the temperature of boiling water (212 degrees Fahrenheit)? At those levels, the tread area actually becomes tar-like in consistency to help the tires and car adhere to the track.

* That at any given moment on the racetrack, the total area of all four tires that is in contact with the track surface is equal to about 1 square foot? That means that an area not much bigger than a sheet of notebook paper is responsible for transferring all the technology and power generated by IndyCar Series cars into speeds exceeding 220 mph.

* That at speeds of 220 mph, the front tires of an IndyCar Series car rotate at a rate of 43 times per second. That means, over the course of a single lap at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the front tire will experience about 1,955 revolutions, and the rear tires will experience 1,800 revolutions. Considering a normal fuel stint is 30 laps or more at Indy, each tire could experience more than 60,000 revolutions before it is changed for a fresh set.

* That the draft (or the “hole” in the air) created by an IndyCar Series car extends 25 feet behind the car?

* That while traveling about 220 mph, IndyCar Series cars travel slightly more than the length of a football field every second?

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Saturday, May 17, 2008


I recently went with my small group to see Ben Stein's documentary film, Expelled. This is a film about how scientists and professors have been expelled from their fields because they believe in "Intelligent Design." In fact, some were fired from their jobs just for mentioning "ID." Apparently in scientific academia the theory of God (or any other intelligent designer) creating the world is looked on as complete and utter ignorance. Alternatively, common evolutionary theory says that life developed naturalistically over time from mud and lightning or perhaps on the backs of crystals. Ignorance? Watch this trailer for the movie and I encourage you to go see this film soon while it is still in the theater.

This film has obviously stirred up quite a controversy, especially with evolutionist Richard Dawkins. He wrote a blog in response to Expelled on his website called, Lying for Jesus. If you were at church a few weeks ago when we covered secular humanism, Richard was the guy on the video. He says some pretty crazy stuff! So much that it just makes me sad.

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Thursday, May 15, 2008

Following Jesus

I recently read a book by NT Wright (a fantastic author and theologian) called Following Jesus: Biblical Reflections on Discipleship. I am constantly challenged by the concept of discipleship. For some reason I can easily understand my faith in terms of a teacher/student relationship. If there is anyone who I relate with in the Bible it would be the disciples. Though they were slow and didn’t get it most of the time, Jesus still poured His heart and soul into them with confidence that they could be like Him. And they turned out alright. They completely changed and revolutionized the world. There is still hope for you and me after all. :-)

Wright writes this book to help bring a clearer picture of the real biblical Jesus. He admits that many people inside and outside of the church have made up a ‘Jesus’ for themselves, inventing Him to be whatever they wish. Jesus to many Christians makes them feel warm and happy inside, but doesn’t challenge them or suggest them to do something about the plight of the world. However, the real Jesus cared more about the world than our comfortable little feelings. The call of discipleship for us is to do the same.

Something that was incredibly insightful was a chapter about who Jesus is according to the book of Hebrews:

- He is the true Son of God that is higher than the angels (Hebrews 1)
- He was 100% human that ‘lived our life and died our death’ (Hebrews 2)
- He is the true Joshua who leads His people to the promise land (Hebrews 3-4)
- He is the true high priest (mediator between us and God) forever (Hebrews 5-7)
- He is the final sacrifice and the new covenant (Hebrews 8-10)

This leads to the great heroes of the faith in chapter 11. Then chapters 12 and 13 sum everything up. Wright says,

“...it is the Jesus who will guide us through life, the Jesus who meets us today as we feast at His table, the Jesus who summons us gently but clearly to follow Him. And at the heart of this picture we find the cross: the cross which Jesus endured on our behalf, which was the climax of his life of suffering and rejection, which was, as we shall see, the final sacrifice.”

What an amazing and refreshing picture of Jesus!

Wright also wrote about the kingdom of heaven and what that meant to Jesus. He, like many others today, insists that God wants to bring heaven to earth. He points out how so many Christians are sitting around waiting to die and go to heaven. But Jesus wants heaven to be here in this world, NOW! And we, His disciples, are the ones charged to bring it here. This is a scary thought. That is what the disciples must have felt when Jesus gave them the great commission, putting the responsibility of His kingdom in the hands of His students.

If this seems like too daunting of a task, the writer of Hebrews encourages with this:

Hebrews 12:1-3

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart."

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