Archive for March, 2010

Hormonal Men: Understanding the Complexities of the Male Brain

Here is a facinating article on CNN regarding Love, sex, and the male brain by Louann Brizendine.  Thanks to K & S for passing it along.  All in all, this looks like a very interesting book and makes total sense.

Highlights from the article:

If testosterone were beer, a 9-year-old boy would be getting the equivalent of a cup a day. But a 15-year-old would be getting the equivalent of nearly two gallons a day. This fuels their sexual engines and makes it impossible for them to stop thinking about female body parts and sex.

Despite stereotypes to the contrary, the male brain can fall in love just as hard and fast as the female brain, and maybe more so. When he meets and sets his sights on capturing “the one,” mating with her becomes his prime directive. And when he succeeds, his brain makes an indelible imprint of her. Lust and love collide and he’s hooked…

Although men have earned the reputation for being more stoic than women, they actually have stronger emotional reactions than we do. They just don’t show it very often.  Studies of men’s faces show that the male brain’s initial emotional reaction can be stronger than the female brain’s. But within 2.5 seconds, he changes his face to hide the emotion, or even reverse it. The repeated practice of hiding his emotions gives men the classic poker face.

As men age, the male brain hormones change and the male brain and body goes into the stage of life called andropause. The king of male hormones — testosterone — goes down and the queen of female hormones — estrogen — goes up. Whether Grandpa is your kids’ hero or the grouch they hate to visit depends a lot on how he handles these hormonal changes.


“If there is one thing I know in this life…

…we are beggars all.” – Thrice

Spoken originally by Luther, “Wir sind bettler. Hoc est verum.

Perfected by Thrice.  Great song, great lyrics. And just a great album.

All you great men of power, you who boast of your feats
Politicians and entrepreneurs
Can you safe guard your breath in the night while you sleep
Keep your heart beating steady or sure?
As you lie in your bed does the thought haunt your head
That you’re really rather small?
If there’s one thing I know in this life, we are beggars all

All you champions of science and rulers of men
Can you summon the sun from it’s sleep?
Does the earth seek your council on how fast to spin?
Can you shut up the gates of the deep?
Don’t you know that all things hang as if on a string over darkness, poised to fall?
If there’s one thing I know in this life, we are beggars all

All you big shots who swagger and stride with conceit
Did you devise how your frame would be formed?
If you’d be raised in a palace or left out on the streets?
Or Choose the place or the hour you’d be born?
Tell me what can you claim not a thing, not your name
Tell me if you can recall just one thing, not a gift, in this life

Can you hear what’s been said, can you see now that everything’s grace after all
If there’s one thing I know in this life, we are beggars all

Honesty in Despair: Richard the Ageless Wonder Revealed

Ageless Guyliner, by Loreal..or Richard Alpert

The ladies may like Richard Alpert’s dashingly debonair eyelashes, but last episode I finally felt like I got to hear something from Richard that helped me respect his character much more before he attempted to blow himself to bits:

“I devoted my life — longer than you can possibly imagine — in service of a man who told me that everything was happening for a reason. That he had a plan. A plan that I was a part of. And when the time was right, he would share it with me.”

One of the characteristics to which I am most attracted in people is honesty – particularly those who name what is really there, and not prone to cover it for the sake of preservation of image, vanity, or saving face.

Why? I think it’s because the folks who have done that for me have opened me to the deepest level of honesty with God and myself.  Those closest to me know my doubts in faith.  Whenever I hear students who have rejected the faith because of hypocrisy, I typically say, “You wanna hear my story?”  Nine times out of ten, I win this deranged “christian abuse” competition.

I’ve had in wondering when we pray the prayer, “Thy Kingdom Come, Thy Will Be Done, On Earth as it is in Heaven,” that God truly answers it.  More often than not, I look at the world around me and wonder, “Really God? This is your plan? Us? You gotta be kiddin’ me…”

While I have been a little disappointed with this season of LOST (I still have hope), I appreciate that some characters have had their true natures revealed.  Richard has always been the enigma of LOST that I didn’t know what his role was to be…until now.  He’s the faithful servant who has worked in hope of what could be, what should be – but when that is taken away, the purpose to which he has devoted his life and love seems…lost.  (Pun intended.)

Jack still has hope, and Jack seems to be assuming his role of protagonist once again and moving into what we saw in Season 1 – the reluctant leader.

I can’t watch tonight because I have a church meeting (no spoilers on the comments, please), but I look forward to more of how Richard is revealed.

Glenn Beck, why do you talk?

Good Lord, this kind of idiocy just makes me angry.

Glenn Beck says you should run from a church if it talks about social justice.  Sweet Jesus, someone needs to seriously rebuke him out of his ignorance.  And I might say something I would regret if I were to be asked, so it won’t be me.

Good think I’m not on facebook, because other people’s comments would just make me even more livid…

The WORST part of this is that Mr. Beck is speaking as if he has any kind of authority with regards to the church or scripture.  Could the talking head be any more off in his interpretation of scripture?

Mr. Beck, can you look up the Hebrew words “mishpot” and “sedek” in your Bible and realize that righteousness and justice (and that means social justice) are placed together more than any two words in the Old Testament? Or those commands given to care for the poor? That is social justice, Mr. Beck.

Perhaps you should do some justice and stop hurting America with your ignorant claims of authority in something you obviously know just enough to be very dangerous with a microphone, Glenn Beck.

Seriously, Glenn.  Can you issue some sort of apology for your ignorant statement? Or would that be too much?

Turning the Tide over Time: Kristof Speaks

When I got into this campus ministry gig, I wondered if I would ever see significant change in the fabric of society in my time.

Today, I got to read something I never thought I’d read – NY Times Columnist Nicholas Kristof actually calling his own liberal readership “snobs” and actually affirming evangelical Christians for their humanitarian work.  Granted, he also calls out Evangelicals of some of our junk as well, but still, this is overwhelmingly positive.

I would read and forward Kristof’s op-ed pieces to many friends who were absorbed in Christian culture to see how the rest of the world views Evangelicals.  Needless to say, I took a few whacks from friends who didn’t like me very much for putting this in their lap.

I remember when I got to design the first “World Changers” track at a conference for privileged fraternity and sorority students, talking about poverty and AIDS and how Christians are required to respond – and got lots of looks that I seemed crazy.  “You really think students are up for this stuff? Particularly the students with whom you work?”

Being on the leading edge can be fun – but sometimes the leading edge feels more like the bleeding edge. I’ve been called lots of names from other Christians over the years, and we saw our ministry numbers take hits when we started talking about difficult things.

But it’s reading stuff like this by Kristof that makes me realize that I actually am making a difference by calling students to what Rich Stearns and others are increasingly bringing greater attention to how the gospel must speak to the realities of our broken world.

Turning the tide over time is tough – but seeing gains like this makes it seem worth it.

March 2010
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