My Hurricane!

So I know a guy who works for the environmental services department in a children’s hospital down in Florida. For those of you who don’t know what that is, environmental services is the department that’s responsible for cleaning the rooms and the medical instruments and so on.

This guy—who’s in his 50s—has been doing this job for several years now, but even just after a few months working there when he first started, he quickly developed a reputation in the hospital.

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A Story About the Blessings of Social Media

Over the past few years, I’ve heard people complain quite often that social media—especially Facebook and Twitter—is destructive to relationships as well as the individual. Whereas I can see how this can be true in some instances, I do think the criticisms have gotten the lion’s share of the attention. In my experience, the discussion has drowned out some very positive things about social media. Personally, I think social media has some great benefits, so much so that I’d even call them blessings.

Sometime in the past year, I was having a conversation with a high school student named Jason*. He shared with me that he doesn’t like it how sometimes social media gets a bad rap. He said that if it hadn’t been for social media, he would not have the social skills that he has today.

Jason went on to explain that prior to social media, he had a lot of difficulty navigating the social landscape. He even confessed that he had significant bouts Continue reading

Memories of Racism, Memories of Grace – Princeton Seminary Dining Hall

Very few seminary campuses compare to Princeton Theological Seminary in terms of sheer beauty. Anybody who’s visited the historic institution knows this. In fact, I heard through the grapevine that Miller Chapel was mentioned in Martha Stewart’s list of most beautiful places to get married. I haven’t been able to verify this, but I can easily see how it could very well be true. (The wife and I got hitched there.) Not enough can be said about the architecture, the greens and the surrounding area. The place looks absolutely gorgeous year-round. (Click on pics to see more photos.)

One place that typically gets overlooked in terms of aesthetic appeal is the Mackay Campus Center, especially the dining hall. The picture doesn’t do it justice. The tall, wide windows at the end of the hall let in copious amounts of sunlight and give students excellent views of the changing seasons as they eat, chat and study throughout the year. It also has two levels and massive chandeliers noticeably held up by only three or four large screws. We used to comment that if those things fell, they would kill half of the student population. I have many fond memories of that dining hall.

Unfortunately, it is also in this setting that I had one of my more memorable racist encounters. We don’t normally associate the modern seminary with racism, especially fairly liberal ones like Princeton (though certainly a spectrum of conservatives, moderates, and liberals are represented); however, racism is alive and well even there. Continue reading