Category Archives: Media

Joseph Kony 2012

If you have anything to do with social media, you’ll know that the biggest thing online right now is not the presidency, sports, or anything else that we pour too much time and energy into.

For the first time in quite a while, facebook and twitter are blowing up over something that is important, but it has been going on for years.  When I say years, I mean it’s been happening since I was in diapers.

If you don’t know what I’m referring to, please take 30 minutes and watch this video.

There are so many questions that I have after watching the video:

Why are we just finding out about this atrocity?

What is my role in participation?

What is our role as Christians?  As the Church?

How can he justify his actions?  Does he even have a conscience?

There are certain things in life that sometimes we want to forget about.  In all honesty, we want to “un-see” them.  Why?  There can be many reasons.  It’s because our guilt takes over.  It’s because we don’t have time to care about things that are so far away and don’t effect the way we live our life on a day-to-day basis.  It’s because we’ve exceeded our “spiritual bandwagon” things to do for the year.  It’s because it doesn’t let us be apathetic.

As American’s, our bubble is good and safe.  It’s the “American Dream”.  It’s our house, picket fence, trophy wife and kids.  Our bubble does not let things like this come in.  We push them away because they are hard and it disrupts our life.  My question is this:

What do we do when our “American Dream” is disrupted?

As a follower of Christ, I try and orient my life around things Jesus said and did.  And as I’m reading through the New Testament, I see Jesus constantly caring about those who are not able to help themselves.  I see him doing something about the injustice in the lives of people.  I see him loving those who need to be loved.

Since this video was posted, there have been just as many people critiquing this video and “Invisible Children” as there are people who want to make a change.  Just the other night, the co-founder was dealing with health issues that apparently caused him to do some things he shouldn’t have.  What they’re doing isn’t perfect.  It just isn’t.  There’s no getting around it.  This post isn’t perfect and probably has a bunch of holes in it, but are we not going to do something about this just because it’s not perfect?  If that was the case, nothing would ever get done anywhere.

So what are we going to do?  Are we going to care?  Are we going to do something?

Tim Neufeld, my advisor at FPU, posted something on his facebook in response to the video that rang true in my heart.

The problem with creating awareness about any social issue via social media is that one might think tweeting or posting about the issue makes him or her an activist, and thus alleviates any guilt over the issue…  Activism is not only changing one’s beliefs but also orienting one’s lifestyle in a way that changes the unjust system causing the issue.

A part of me wants to think that by writing this blog post, that I’ve done my part.  I’ve hopefully made more people aware of this, and now they can inform more people, and we can do what the video says, “Make Joseph Kony famous”.  But if that’s where it ends, then I drastically need to change the way I think.  Writing this post doesn’t mean I’ve done my job.  Re-posting this on facebook doesn’t mean that everything is okay and that my conscience can be cleared because I did my part.

Writing something or saying something is great.  It is.  But it can’t stop there.

We have to do something.

We also have to pray.  We have to pray for these kids who are being forced to kill their parents.  We have to pray for these kids who don’t want to sleep because they are scared.  We have to pray for this evil man, that a miracle happens and that he stops.  We have to pray that we don’t become apathetic, and that we will in fact, do something.

Jason Kinzel

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October Baby

Last week Velora and I attended the Hope Now for Youth dinner. We sat with two couples who are involved in teaching in our local school district. One teacher shared with us that a 14 year old student came to her with exciting news: “I’m pregnant!!!” “Why is this good news for you?” the teacher asked. “Because I want to become a mother before I die.” The student seemed to believe she would not live past her teen years.

The other teacher shared with us how on her first day of school, as the students came into her room for the first time, that she could identify who the gang leaders were and who were their followers. These students believe that kids who live in a certain part of town have it better than they do and are smarter. The teacher shared that you are as smart as anyone, but you have to put effort into your education. I’m glad we have Christian teachers to be a light in the dark world of our schools.

This brings me to encourage our church for an opportunity now in March to get the word out about a movie that is coming into theaters. It is a Christian film called October Baby (rated PG-13). The film tells the story of a survivor of a botched abortion. We seldom hear this side presented anywhere. The survivor does not know that she is adopted until she is a teenager and then goes on a journey to discover herself and her past. It is a powerful story of the survivor, her adoptive parents, her birth mother, an abortion nurse, and her close friends.

We all have neighbors, classmates, and fellow workers who are affected by the decisions young people are making today about abortion, adoption, and the results of those decisions.

The first showing is scheduled for Friday, March 23rd. For more information or to watch the trailer you can visit the movie’s website.

Velora and I have seen this film and we can tell you that you will laugh through about a third of the film and shed tears through the rest of the movie. We will show a clip in church and maybe your Sunday School class will want to attend as a group or you can grab some neighbors to go with you. The more people that see it on the opening weekend, the more they will continue to show it.

Pastor Ed Willems

Tim Tebow

Tim Tebow.  Unless you have been living under a rock (or don’t watch any TV) you know that he is one of the biggest names not only in sports, but in the social media as well.  While Tebow is the quarterback for the Denver Broncos, he is also a Christian who consistently proclaims his faith with boldness.

If you watch ESPN (like I do) you’ll know that people either love or hate Tebow.  Shows like “Sports Nation” talk about Tebow almost every episode and it shows that most fans love him because he is a competitor and because he knows how to win football games. However, many people believe that he will not even be a quarterback next year in the NFL due to his lack of consistency in throwing the ball. For huge sports fans like me, here is a fun stat to support this belief: during the regular season, his passer rating, was the 28th best passer rating, which is the equivalent to being in the bottom 15% of throwing quarterbacks.

As far as the media goes, he is the person to talk about.  He was recently voted the “Most Popular Active American Athlete” by an ESPN sports poll. Because of Tim, many people are now participating in the act of “Tebowing”.  What is “Tebowing”?  According to tebowing.com, it is “to get down on a knee and start praying, even if everyone else around you is doing something completely different.”  There are thousands of people who are “Tebowing”.  High school students in Long Island even got suspended for “Tebowing” because they would be “Tebowing” in the hallways between classes, making it difficult for other students to get to class. Actions like “Tebowing” have caused Tebow to be referenced recently in a Saturday Night Live skit where “Jesus” suggested that he “take it down a notch” in regards to how he always speaks openly about his faith.

            With all of that said, it is easy to see that Tim Tebow is making a profound impact on the world. Whether you love or hate him, something exciting happened.  To start you should know that Tebow’s favorite verse is John 3:16, which his black eye tape referenced in college. John 3:16 also seemed to be the theme of his first playoff start. In the game, not only did he complete 316 yards of passing, but the offensive coordinator who was calling the plays was named John, his receiver who caught the final touchdown pass was born on Christmas, in the final quarter the overnight TV rating was 31.6, the only interception was thrown by the other quarterback was on 3rd down and 16 yards, and lastly, four of the referees were named Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Because of this people all over Twitter and Facebook began talking about the “coincidence” or “divine help” and were wondering if God helped Tebow and the Broncos win the game.  But that wasn’t the only thing.  The best thing that happened was that by Monday morning the number one Google search was John 3:16.  That means that hundreds of thousands of people, if not millions read these words: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him will not perish, but have eternal life”.  Now I don’t actually think that all of those people accepted Christ because of this, or even that 1% did, but Tim Tebow is planting seeds in the lives of millions of people.  He was blessed with a gift and he is using his gift to glorify God in everything he does.

You might be able to tell by now that I am a big Tim Tebow fan.  There are few players in sports who are as compelling to watch as him.  Not only that, but there are even less sports figures who claim to be followers of Christ that live it out.  I know I will never be able to play in the NFL and will probably never have the type of platform that Tebow has to speak into the lives of people everywhere, but I pray that I will use the platform I do have every single day to impact as many lives as I can.

Pastor Jason Kinzel

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