Sunday, December 28, 2008

UUUUUUUUUUUGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHH!!!!!


We almost had it.


The CPKings were on our way to our rightful championship when the low down dirty, dasterdly Dallas Cowboys once again proved why my disdain for them is not only well-founded but indeed everlasting.


Here's how it went down. Last week the Ravens and the Pokes were in a tight game when Not So Fast Willie McGahee ran straight up the middle for seventy something yards and a TD. The good news is that my worthy opponent started Leroy 'Die Hard' Mclain who up to that point had about 50 yards and a fumble.

The Pokes came back and scored and after the ensuing kickoff the Ravens had the ball on their 18 yard line. One would think that Dallas would decide not to run the same defense that just burned them a few plays earlier. WRONG!!!
The first play from scrimmage brother Leroy hits the hole, brushes off a couple sorry excuses for a tackle and rumbles 82 yards for a score. In one play with about a minute left Mcclain went from 3 to 19 points.


But I still had a chance. That was the Saturday night game and I still had Daring Drew, San and An Holmes and the Pittsburgh D. Unfortunately the Steelmen laid the biggest egg of their season garnering a grand total of 1 point.

On the other side my opponents D totaled 20 and thus the Pots dream season was over with a 9 point loss.

Well, them's the breaks. We had a fun season and I'm already scheming for next year. Don't worry loyal Pots fans we will be back. Until next season....


Go Pots

LL

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

One Down, One To Go.


THAT WAS CLOSE. The Pots eeeked and I do mean eeked out a crucial playoff win yesterday.


I made some bad calls (including picking up and starting Devin Hester and not following my gut on John Kasey) Thankfully the Lions are intent on redefining the word 'aweful'. D. Rhodes picked up over 80 yards and two scores and that was just enough to give me a four point lead going into Monday night.

Having played my hand I had to wait until my opponents last player, L.J. Smith did his thing on national t.v. Once in a great while L.J. plays like an elite TE grabs a bunch of balls and a score. But for the most part he stays quietly out of the way of the big boys and lets the grown-ups play the game. That's the L.J. I needed last night. Funny thing is I was talking to brother Bishop earlier that day and told him I needed the typical L.J. performance of 1 catch and 12 yards. So while brother Polycarp was exalting in a Birds victory I was on pins and needles hoping against hope that L.J. wouldn't suddenly morph into Super TE.

And boy did my man deliver. D Mac connected on 26 passes for 290 yards with L.J. collecting a grand total of 1 for 13 yards and most importantly no score thus preserving our slim 4 point victory.

So the Pots are in the championship, but more on that later.

Go Pots
LL

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Mega who?


Megatron? Megatron? Who needs Megatron when you've got Antonio (Comeback Kid) Bryant.
Since the game didn't matter I wasn't going to bother telling you that the Pots went into Monday night's contest down 15 points with one player left in our quiver. I figured that even if A.B. had a good game (80 yds and a score) we'd still wind up a few points short, but it didn't matter since we already locked up the number 1 seed. But then A.B. had to put the BOOM SHAKA-LAKA on the Panthers doing a better Megatron imitation than the Meg man himself.
200 yards and two scores later A.B. pulled the Pots to our 12th victory.

On another note check out the stats and highlights of the Panther run game. I think they had over three hundred yards rushing and four rushing TD's. That's insane. And take it from a retired Madden guru that's hard to do even on Playstation. I mean the Bucs were supposed to have one of the better run D's in the league. In case you're wondering check out the schedule to see who they play on week 16 which is our championship week.

It's beginning to look alot like Christmas.


Go Pots

LL

Monday, December 08, 2008

Go Time!

Well, dudes and dudettes it's go time. Our reg season ended yesterday and now the team built for the championship enters the playoff dance with high hopes of lifting the golden crockpot in victorious jubiliation.


And as usual I need your help. My gut says 'lance don't be a complete dufus, play L.T. against the Chef's'. My guile says 'lance this is fun, cast those lots and play Dominic Rhodes against the kittens at home'.


To give some perspective here's the rest of the lineup:


QB - Daring Drew Brees. With still something to play for I'm hoping he lights up a Bears team that sports an average pass D.


Wideouts: Little Stevie B, (emerging as a prime target for 21st century version of the greatest show on turf and facing the Vikes who just gave up 220 and a score to D Culpeper) Antonio Bryant, (number one choice for TB and facing the ATL) Jericho C, (Bills at home) not sold on Jericho since I don't know how Brett could throw 31 times and connect with him just once. But the Bills are banged up and virtually out of it and my backups are D Mase (Steelers at home) and Santonio Holmes (at Ravens).


RB's: Flash (at Texans nuff said).
L.T. Will he or won't he show up? Will he be the L.T. of old and drop a buck sixty in total yards with 2 TD's? Or will he spew and sputter to 80 yards with no scores?

What's up with Smash and Slash? Lynch seems hurt and I don't trust him against the Jets. Slash goes up against a good Titans D.

On the other hand (there's always another hand) there's Mr. Rhodes who faces a truly sorry Lions D at home. With Joseph Addai hurt he could have a big game especially if the Ponies build a big lead and then lean on the run to close out things.

So what think ye? Do I stick with L.T. who might deliver a dud or hope the road to victory runs through Mr. Rhodes?

Go Pots
LL

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly (Fantasy Style)


Yo ya'll what's up?


Other stuff has kept me away from the blogosphere and due to a class I'm teaching and some other things the blogging will probably remain light throughout the rest of this year.


I'm sure however you're wondering how your favorite blogoshere fantasy football team is doing so I decided to drop a quick update.


The good: The Pots are squarely in the playoffs as the number 1 seed and coming off a big win in which we put up 117 points. Daring Drew wasn't spectacular but good enough to offset a good game by Eli (who needs Plax) Manning. And he gets the kittens in our championship round. All three receivers we played (Little Stevie B, D Mase, and Antonio B) all put up good numbers and a score.

And what can we say about Flash. Torched the kittins for a buck twenty and two scores on turkey day.

As if we didn't know it already them cats from the left side of the Keystone state can really play some D.


The Bad: We still have TE issues. Hopefully Kevin (E Street Band) Boss can keep grabbing at least one score per game going down the stretch.


The Ugly: L.T. 14 carries for 24 yards. L.T. could be the sin that does the Pots in.


The Hope: Looks like Slash and Smash have got their groove back. Slash carved up a disinterested Jags squad and with Ahman (Advil man) Green out again he's now Da Man in Houston. As it stands if we do reach the championship game Smash gets to batter Denver and Slash gets to slice up the Silver and Black.


Go Pots

LL

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Pots Playoff Bound

Playoffs!!! Playoffs!!! Yeah, you can talk to me about playoffs!

*1.CrockPot Kings9-2-0.818962L-2954
2.fightin falcons8-3-0.727932W-2412
3.Ferocious Felz7-4-0.636855L-1835
4.dark knights6-5-0.545807W-219
5.Safety Number 15-6-0.455776L-126
6.Pontius Pilots5-6-0.455706W-4613
7.AirForce14-7-0.364762W-154
8.Allstars Sprbwl1Chmp4-7-0.364706L-41036
9.Roanoke Raiders4-7-0.364581W-1318
10.Blue Henz3-8-0.273792L-7710
  • * = clinched playoff spot
  •  = Recent Smack Talk

Monday, November 17, 2008

Pots Punked By Pilots


82 to 58 would usually make for a very sad day in Potsville. 

But we’re actually cool with that. Why you ask? L.T. actually ran well against one of leagues best defenses in their home park. Next Sunday he’s home against the Colts who may be without Bob Sanders. 

Even though we’ve lost two in a row we’re still very much on track to make the playoffs.  And if we do make the playoffs I like our match ups especially in the title game. There I get Daring Drew against Detroit, Slash Staton against Da Raidaz, Smash Lynch against Denver, Jericho C against the Seahawks and of course L.T. who’ll face Tampa Bay. Granted T.B. has a good D, but A.P. ran up 85 on them yesterday so I’d have no problem starting Vizor man in the final. I picked up Owen Daniels who along with Slash also gets to add some misery to the Silver and Black on week 16. 

We just added Warren Dunn (a player I wanted to clue you in on for other reasons) since he takes over the run duties for Tampa against Detroit this week. 

And I’m even encouraged by our receiving corps. Jericho C should continue to be in the mix with what’s turning out to be a decent Jets squad. Stevie B got shut down Sunday but you have to think that teams will try and dbl, triple, quadruple and then pray to cover the Fitz and Q show. Stevie will get his. D Mase came off a separated shoulder and still gobbled up over 80 yards in N.Y. We even had a slight Santonio sighting and he may yet be able to do some damage down the line.  

Now if only Smash could put up a 30 spot tonight….

Go Pots
LL

Friday, November 14, 2008

Pots Post First Loss


What's happnen ya'll? I spent the week at our denomination's church planter assessment so I'm a bit behind. 

Well, all good things must come to an end and thus the CPKings are no longer undefeated. We dropped our first game last week when our receivers accounted for a grand total of 1 point. But the bigger news is the casting of the lots (can a reformed dude say roll of the dice?) late season trade we pulled off. Yeah it may come back to bite me but what's fantasy football without at least one risky trade. 

Here's how it went down. I offered Jericho C, Marshawn Lynch and Steve Slaton for the one and only L.T. The owner rejected that but countered with Derrick Mason (whose the # 1 receiving option on the Ravens) and L.T. for (gulp) Michael Turner and Megatron. My head said 'Lance, this is a bad idea', but my gut said 'go for it, I mean he is still L.T.' So I went for it and promptly lost my first game. L.T. couldn't get it going against the Chef's and Mason got hurt. 

But that's water under the bridge or dam or whatever. Here's the deal for this week. I still have Daring Drew. Jericho C already gave me a decent game and I picked up Owen Daniels from the waiver wire. I also have Steve Breaston with hopes he'll continue to get huge chunks of yards in Arizona's Wild, Wild, West offense. I'm going to start Santonio (getting real, real, real close to bust) Holmes based on his matchup against a leaky Bolts D. And though I might even lose the week on this one I'm starting Smash (about to walk off the cliff bust) Lynch in place of Flash Johnson. Basically I'm giving two cats I drafted with big expectations a chance to redeem themselves. Blow it and in the immortal words of Colonel Klink they will be 'court martialed, shot and sent to the Russian front!'

Why start L.T. against one of the best run D's in the league playing at home? Don't know, just got a hunch. 

I'll hit you back Monday to let you know what went down. 

Go Pots
LL

Friday, November 07, 2008

The Abortion Issue

The year is 1993 and Bill Clinton recently won the 1992 presidential election. Clinton posted about 5 million more votes than incumbent president George H.W. Bush and easily won the electoral collage vote. Perhaps even more important was the fact that President Clinton entered the White House with majorities in both houses of congress.

It didn’t take long to for him to take his new mandate for a test drive and if I remember right made a few moves that immediately angered those conservatives who opposed him. The first was the passage of the ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ bill concerning homosexuals in the military. The second was his failed attempt to pass health care reform.

Why do I mention this? I wanted to highlight how President Clinton took steps to address issues that important to different aspects of his base even though those issues angered and eventually galvanized those who opposed him. Health care reform was a major part of President Clinton’s 1993 State of the Union speech and in that speech he indicated a plan to send congress major legislation on health care in the spring of that year.

Fast forward to 2005. Here George W. Bush has be re-elected and also leads the party that controls both houses of congress. He too seeks to utilize his electoral mandate to address an issue important to his base even though it might arouse the anger of his opponents. That issue was the reform of social security and it was a major aspect of his 2005 State of the Union speech. And though President Bush was a pro-life president the issue of abortion wasn’t really mentioned in the speech. He did speak of building a culture of life, but connected it with his desire to ensure that embryos wouldn’t be created for experimentation or to be used to supply human body parts. While that is an important part of building a culture of life it is not the same as proposing a ban on abortion.

Now lets take a snapshot of this past election. I watched the Republican National Convention and paid particular attention to the Gov. Pailin’s and Senator McCain’s acceptance speeches. I watched all four debates and living in Pennsylvania couldn’t get away from the onslaught of political adds even if I tried real hard.

I bring this up to begin a dialogue regarding an issue that’s important to all of us. I (and I’m sure you also) received dozens of emails and read dozens of blog posts explaining why those who claim to believe in Christ should not vote for Senator Obama. My aim in this post however is not to revisit that argument. Instead I would like to give those who wondered why any believer could even consider voting for President-elect Obama knowing where he stood regarding abortion.

That’s where the examples cited above come into play and where I need your help. Many of us who did vote for President-elect Obama never got a clear idea of what Sen. McCain would do to outlaw the practice of abortion. Moreover I’ve always wondered why President Bush didn’t make outlawing abortion more of an issue during the first few months of his second term. For example in his 2005 State of the Union Speech President Bush declared his support for a constitutional amendment to protect the institution of marriage. Yet, apart from declaring that embryos should not be created for experiments or body parts there wasn’t any kind of legislative proposal having to do with abortion. I’m not sure why this was the case and would like to have the thoughts of those of my brothers and sisters who consider abortion the most significant issue that determines their vote. I want to know what were your thoughts when a self-described pro-life president who just won re-election with a majority in both houses of congress decided to make social security his primary focus? Please understand, my questions aren’t meant to provoke an argument but to gain a better understanding. Did you expect President Bush to address abortion through legislation or by simply appointing conservative justices? Beyond that what would have been the path to have Roe v. Wade revisited?

I’m asking these questions because I think it would be helpful to explain to those who didn’t vote for Senator McCain the pathway toward overturning Roe v.Wade and then eventually outlawing abortion. For many who voted for President-elect Obama it wasn’t enough to point out that he was pro-choice. And though I did receive dozens of emails and read dozens of blog post I can’t recall reading any that spelled out what Senator McCain would do to outlaw abortion. Following that line of thought I wonder why Senator McCain didn’t make outlawing abortion a more prominent part of his campaign. It barely came up in his acceptance speech and didn’t seem to be mentioned all that much in his campaign speeches. And when it was brought up during the third debate I was somewhat surprised to hear him say that he thought the issue should be decided by the states. Were any of you likewise surprised especially in light of the fact that pro-life ballot measures were defeated in South Dakota and Colorado? Many of the emails I received and the blog posts I read claimed that President-elect Obama was the most liberal, pro-abortion candidate ever. Despite this I never saw a McCain ad that brought this up. Did he run any ads in other states with a pro-life theme?

Let me reiterate that it’s not my intention to provoke an argument nor make light of an extremely important issue. But this election caused me to wonder why Senator McCain said so little about an issue that has apparently moved many of my brothers and sisters to become single issue voters. Had Senator McCain won the election what would you have expected of him? I think I understand the importance of appointing supreme court justices so perhaps I need to know if a pro-life president would be expected to do anything further to outlaw abortion. Please understand that this is a different question than what would he do to limit and curtail abortions. And even if he had the opportunity to appoint justices could they be as conservative as he would have liked given the new composition of the Senate? I’m not accusing or even suggesting that President Bush or Senator McCain merely used the pro-life issue to secure the evangelical vote. I believe both men are sincerely committed to overturning Roe v. Wade. I just want to know if there was a clear legislative path toward overturning ‘Roe’, what that path was and when and where was it articulated by either President Bush in the two times he ran for office or Senator McCain during this last campaign.

Finally, (or perhaps I should say for now) in light of the election what is the pathway toward ending abortion? If the political avenue is now closed what other avenues are there and what might be some of the more prudent ways to proceed? Before I close please forgive me if I’ve offended or hurt anyone by anything in this post because that certainly was not my intention. I do hope we can have a good and fruitful discussion about the wisest way to end abortion and genuinely protect the lives of all who are created in God’s image.

To Him Who Loves Us…

Pastor lance

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Kings Close Curtain on Falcons


I almost forgot. (you have to admit there’s a lot going on these days)

Anyhow remember how I said we needed to score points in bunches to win against my son’s team that featured Kurt Warner and All Day A.P. 

Well here’s the deal. With Daring Drew on a much deserved bye week I started Matt Schaub who had been on fire lately. All Mild Mannered Matt had to do was keep pace with Kurt Warner by throwing for about 250 yds and two TD’s. Doing that would be enough for me to keep up with a team that along with Kurt featured All Day A.P., Reggie Wayne, Santana Moss and top five TE Chris Cooley. 
And then it happened. Matt started badly with one INT and two lost fumbles before leaving the game with an injury. Instead of about 20 or so points Matt put up a grand total of 1. 
Things weren’t looking good for the Pots. We went into Sunday night losing by two points and still having to face Reggie Wayne (Sun nite), Santana Moss, Hines Ward, Chris Cooley and the Skins kicker (Mon nite). All we had was the Pittsburgh D. 

And that was all we needed. Pittsburgh resurrected the legend of the Steel Curtain, (if you’re not familiar with that it’s just a darn shame) shut down a good, disciplined Redskin offense and delivered 20 points to the Pots. 

We’re 9 and 0 and have another tough match up this week. Based on performance Chris ‘Flash’ Johnson is now our #2 back with Michael Turner my # 1. I’m even leaning toward starting Flash against Chitown this Sunday. 

Go Pots
LL

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Our Great Divide



Dear brothers and sisters in Christ. We are deeply divided over this election in particular and politics in general. I was hoping that this election season could propel us to strive to pursue unity even while acknowledged our differences. I had hoped that the world might see that despite our political convictions God’s people enjoyed a bond that went far deeper than our politics. I had hoped that we could show the culture that the unity of the Spirit was strong enough to run across the growing (and rapidly calcifying) political divide gripping this country. I had hoped that at the very least God’s people could demonstrate the virtue of peacemaking in a time when respecting those who differ from you appears to be the second casualty of each presidential election cycle.

I realize that many of issues weigh heavily on the minds and hearts of most of God’s people during this and any election season. And I think I understand why those committed to voting for Senator McCain believe that this is perhaps the most crucial election in our lifetime with respect to the issue of abortion. Along with that, I’m aware of why those committed to voting for Senator Obama believe it’s so important for him to win this election. Unfortunately, it doesn’t appear that either side has the ability to come to the table, speak forthrightly about their cares and concerns and leave with our desire for continued unity, fellowship and dialogue intact.

The election will take place today and shortly thereafter we will have a president-elect. One side will be positively elated while the other will experience a profound sense of deflation. However, I’m still hoping that the people of God can find a way to be a witness of God’s gospel and the kingdom of Jesus Christ to a country that regardless of who wins will be deeply, deeply divided.

How can we begin the dialogue? Allow me to lead with a couple of comparisons which I hope will provide some needed perspective. The first is aimed at those of my brothers and sisters who intend to vote for Senator Obama. My hope is to give some insight into why our brothers and sisters who intend to vote for Senator McCain have reacted so strongly against Senator Obama.

Imagine it’s 1964 and you and your family are African-Americans living in the deep south. You’ve lived through multiple decades of Jim Crow with all of its enforced segregation, pain, stress and powerlessness. (you can read Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.s Letter from a Birmingham Jail to get a better idea of what it was like living in the South at that time) After decades of struggle the Civil Rights Movement finally caps a protracted season of advocacy culminating in the passage of Civil Rights Act of 1964. This is also a presidential election year. From your perspective one candidate (Lyndon B. Johnson) puts his as well as his parties political future on the line by working for the passage of this legislation. The candidate from the other party (Senator Barry Goldwater) votes against the bill. In your mind and the minds of most of those you know a vote for Senator Goldwater is a vote to continue your existence as a second class citizen. With that in mind you simply cannot fathom why anyone from your family, community and church would ever entertain voting for him. Others bring up the fact that the country faces many other important issues (the Vietnam War, economy, Cold War among them) and that these issues should be weighed equally alongside the Civil Rights issue. For you however civil rights is the issue. And it’s this issue that makes you a single issue supporter of President Johnson even if you disagree with him regarding the economy and the war. For you the alternative is simply not acceptable period.

Before we go on it’s important to remember the point of this comparison. The aim of this post isn’t to detail the dynamics involving the Democratic and Republican parties, why African-Americans for the most part sided with Democrats in subsequent elections and why LBJ was right in saying that he lost the South for a generation. My hope is to get my brothers and sisters who intend to vote for Senator Obama to understand how those voting for Senator McCain might feel about this election and why they can’t bring themselves to vote for Senator Obama.

The next comparison is directed toward my brothers and sisters who intend to vote for Senator McCain. My hope is to give some insight into how our brothers and sisters who intend to vote for Senator Obama feel about him and this election.

Imagine it’s 1980 and you’re among a growing group of evangelicals who believe that now is the time to play a more active role in the political life of this country. For the past several years you’ve sense that the country is going in the wrong direction and that furthermore those in government just don’t seem to consider the concerns of people like you. There are several issues that matter to you and though you voted with the party in 76 you didn’t do so with a great deal of hope or enthusiasm. But now your excited by the candidacy of Gov. Ronald Reagan. Reagan gave an electrifying speech at the 76 convention leaving you and many of your fellow conservatives wishing that he’d been the parties nominee instead of Gerald Ford whom some considered to be a more moderate Republican.

From your perspective Ronald Reagan embodies exactly what you want in a president. Gov. Reagan is the one candidate who gives you real hope that this country can get back on track and move forward out of the malaise it’s been in for the last eight or so years. And words just can’t describe the connection Gov. Reagan has with you and your fellow evangelicals. To put it succinctly Gov. Ronald Reagan is perhaps as close to a dream candidate as you and those who attend church with you could imagine. Not only do you intend to vote for him, but along with many of your friends eagerly volunteer for his campaign. Gov. Ronald Reagan embodies all your hopes for what a president should be and could possibly do once he becomes the leader of this country. While you mean no disrespect to President Carter you simply cannot imagine why anyone would consider casting a vote for him.

Please remember that this is not a comparison between President Ronald Reagan and Senator Barack Obama. My aim is to highlight the similar feelings each man generated among their most fervent supporters. I hope in this way to get those of my brothers and sisters who intend to vote for Senator McCain to at least understand how some of their brothers and sisters feel about Senator Obama.

The aim of this long post is not to tell why you should vote for one candidate or another. My prayer is that we can begin the dialogue that will eventually lead to bridging our very real divide. We have spent this election cycle blogging, commenting and email at each other. My inbox and observations of those blogs tell me that the vast majority of them were intended to persuade or encourage believers to vote one way or another. Well now is the time to step away from the blogs and emails and actually talk to and not at each other.

I pray that you take the time to cast your vote today. But I’d also like you to consider doing something else. Consider contacting a friend whom you know did not vote as you did and make an appointment to have a leisurely Friday night dinner or Saturday afternoon lunch. Take that time to speak to him or her about their choice, what motivated it and why it was so important to them. And then with patience and humility explain why you voted in the opposite direction. Following that discuss some ways in which those believers who voted for Senator McCain and those believers who voted for Senator Obama can begin working together on all of the issues important to us.

Finally, commit to praying for whomever will serve this country as president for the next four years. Beyond that however pray for the Body of Christ that we will serve our Lord by remembering that our main mission is the promotion of His gospel and the extension of His kingdom. Pray that our Lord will heal the divide within us and that together we will show our culture the value of belonging to a more lasting kingdom than the country of America. And pray this as if our witness might depend on it because it very well might.

In the end brothers and sisters it does matter who wins this election. But our continued witness to this country may matter more. Because if we, the people of God cannot love each other through this election than no matter who wins, we’ve already lost.

To Him Who Loves Us
Pastor Lance

Friday, October 31, 2008

Fantasy Football Week 9


Well dudes and dudettes it took nine weeks but it's finally here. This Sunday I square off against the league's second place team. A team led this week by Kurt 'Stubble Master' Warner and Adrian 'All Day' Peterson. Aside from that they get to throw Matt Forte against the toothless Lions D and supplement their air attack with Reggie Wayne, Santana Moss and Hines Ward. Oh and did I mention that this juggernaut is led by my son? He may be my son, but in fantasy football it's all business or in this case shall we say all empire. 

Here's the deal. I'm need to score points in bunches this week. Daring Drew is on his bye so Matt Schaub heads the CPKing Air attack. I've decided to put 'Slash' on the pine since the Texans face a tough Viking run D. That leaves me with Chris 'Flash' Johnson (GB), Marshawn 'Smash' Lynch (NYJ) and Michael 'Burner' Turner (@Oak). 

Right now I'm feeling the Burner and Flash. For the past few weeks I've benched Smash and it hasn't hurt me at all. He should do well at home but the Jets have a decent run D while the Pack and Da Raiders don't. But what do you think?

The next issue is wideout. For now I have Calvin 'Megatron' Johnson (@CHI), Donnie 'New Game' Avery (ARI) and Antonio Bryant (@KC). I'm starting Megatron because... well he's Megatron. Avery may have taken over Torry 'Big Game' Holt's role in the revived Ram offense. He can get deep and the Cards can't cover. Bryant could have a good day against a poor KC D. However I also have Jericho C (@BUF), Santonio Holmes (@WAS) and Bernard 'DBL B' Berrian (Hou). I'm probably sitting Santonio due to the tepid Steeler pass game and the fact that Nate Washington may have taken his place as Big Ben's deep threat. But that still leaves me with Jericho C and Berrian. 

So folks who would you start, who should ride the pine and why. 

Happy Reformation Day

Go Pots
LL

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

PHINALLY


Philadelphia Phillies 
2008 World Series Champions!!!!!!!

How Sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeetttt it is!!!!!!!!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Pots Pummel AllStars


What's that you ask? That's a shot of spectators streaming into London's Wembley Stadium to see the American Football match between the New Orleans Saints and San Diego Chargers. Why am I drawing your attention to this pic? Take a closer look and tell me what you see. On first glance it looks very much like most football stadiums before a normal game. Did you notice the sky however? Seems cloudy, but not raining. Can't tell if there's much wind but from what we can see this may well have been a fairly average cloudy London day. And without driving rain and whipping wind it was the perfect kind of day for Daring Drew Brees to show his former mates how he's faring with his new new team. And Daring Drew had the great Bayou Air Show running on all cylinders. He slung the rock for over 300 yards with three scores and once again delivered 30 points to the CrockPot Kings. To put that in perspective my opponent mustered a grand total of 60 points. There's only one problem though. Daring Drew sat on my bench yesterday. 'Lance, what were you thinking' you exclaim?! I was thinking that Wembley would be a soggy, sloppy mess and that without Reggie Bush the Daring one would have a fairly pedestrian outing. Wrong!!!

But have no fear. For while Daring Drew was busy torching the Bolts, Merciless Matt Schaub took apart the Cincy Kittens. Homeboy went 24 of 28 for 280 and three trips to paydirt. Along with Donnie (I can flat out fly) Avery, Megatron and Slash the Merciless one led the Pots to our 8th straight victory. And this even before 'Flash' gets to dance against the Colts tonight.

Yet there's still work to do. It's likely that Santonio Holmes will be suspended for drug use so we might need another receiver. There's alot of season left and some big weeks coming up. Stay tuned.

Go Pots
LL

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Smoke Screen


“What we need to do is get the government out of the way and let the church do the job of caring for the poor“. I’m pretty sure you’ve heard that in one form or another. The logic seems to go like this:

1) The government always does a poor job caring for the poor (sorry for the pun). (Though it does seem they’re doing a pretty fair job helping out the not so poor these days).
2) God appointed the church to care for the poor and they did just that in the days of the Roman empire when there was no welfare state.
3) Government usurped the church’s role in caring for the poor, instituted programs that were a complete failure and now we have one big mess.
4) Government needs to get out of the way so the church can resume our rightful place and care for the poor.

Well dudes and dudettes it‘s time to go back into the hornets nest because I‘d like to challenge those assumptions. I’ll begin by asking what the average person in your church thinks about the poor? Who would they define as poor? Would they say that poor people are those with jobs that pay at or near minimum wage or those who just don‘t want to work? Are the poor those people who’ve failed to find jobs that pay a living wage and consequently have given up trying? Do they view poor people as those who lack the drive or imitative to take the necessary steps to climb out of poverty? Or do they see the poor as those who don’t have as much access to opportunity as others? How would we go about distinguishing those who need help from those who just want a hand out?

These questions are important since how I view the poor will directly impact the way I believe they either should or should not be helped. If I genuinely believe that poor people are or remain poor due to a lack of desire to move out of poverty then perhaps the help they need is a swift kick in the pants. And if that’s the case the issue isn’t whether they should receive help from the church as opposed to the government but whether they should receive any ‘help’ at all. If I and those I worship with are convinced that the poor somehow lack the necessities to make it in a society that provides equal opportunity for all then the root issue isn’t a lack of help and it therefore follows that few if any resources (time, counseling, money etc.) should be spent on them. Why open and maintain a soup kitchen for those who could just as easily get a job and buy their own soup?

There are times when I wonder if the whole ‘get the government out of the way so the church can do the job mantra’ is a smoke screen. I wonder about that because we haven’t settled on who we believe is poor, why they are poor and the causes of their poverty. In fact we rarely even really talk about the poor. They always seem to be those people out there who remain on the fringes of our world until someone laments what a poor job the government did in trying to lift them from poverty. I wonder if it’s a smoke screen because if we’re honest with ourselves we know that if the government turned the care of the poor over to us tonight that we most likely would not be ready, nor able, nor particularly eager to address their challenges. I wonder if it’s a smoke screen because it sounds good, gets hearty ‘amens’ and knowing nods without us having to actually come up with a plan to actually address the issues of the poor.

So the next time someone confidently declares ‘What we need to do is get the government out of the way and let the church do the job of caring for the poor’, ask the following:

Solid, the government should get out of the way and let the church do our job. What is your church’s (or denomination’s) plan for helping the poor in your area? Have you thought about how much this will cost? What percentage of your church budget would you be willing to devote to this and for how long?

Brothers and sisters I have no problem with the church helping the poor. But let me leave you with this. Over the last several years there’s been a growing number of reformed theological conferences. How many of those conferences have focused on what scripture says about the poor and powerless? If our conferences are indicative of what we believe is important and the theme of poverty rarely if ever makes a peep at those conferences then why in the world would those who do believe that government has a role in assisting the poor entrust us to care for those we’re not even talking about?

To Him Who Loves Us…
Pastor Lance

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Pots Plaster Raiders


I knew the day would come. Daring Drew Brees ran into the Dangerous Carolina D and the Great Bayou Air Show came to a screeching halt. What's worse I benched Matt (Hey Lance I'm playing the Lions dummy) Schaub who put up a pretty decent 20 point showing. No worries though mates. I still had Flash, Slash and Calvin (please just throw him the darn ball) Johnson. Along with them we had solid contributions from Bernard (DBL B) Berrian and the Pittsburgh D. Not sure what happened to Jericho C though I heard he may be injured. I sat Santonio and Smash Lynch but it didn't hurt me too much. And as of this writing I'm pretty sold on going with Flash (Indy at home) and Slash (Cincy at home) this week.

Well onto next week in our quest to run the table.

Go Pots
LL

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Pots Set to Cook


Hey dudes and dudettes. Sorry I couldn’t get to you with the latest news on Da Pots, but between increased busyness and a cold it was a bit difficult to get around to. We did win our sixth in a row with the help of the ‘B’ squad. Bernard Berrian and Steve Breaston had big days receiving and that was just what the doctor ordered since I decided to do the unthinkable and bench Megatron.

And now for the hard part. I picked up Dbl B because he’s the Vikes #1 receiver and with teams gearing to stop All Day I was thinking he could have some nice games and he has. I rolled the dice on Breaston based on two good games and the fact that Kurt Warner is slinging the rock like it really is 1999. Breaston’s on his bye week but that still leaves me with Santonio Holmes (@Cincy), Calvin Johnson (@ Houston), Dbl B (@ Chitown) and Jericho C (@ Oakland). Somebody’s got to ride the pine this week so what do you think?

While your mulling that one over chew on this. One of these three must bide his time on the pine: Chris ‘Flash’ Johnson (@ KC), Steve ‘Slash’ Slaton (Detroit) and Marshawn ’Smash’ Lynch (Diego).

So who sits; Flash, Slash or Smash?

Thanks for the feedback.

Go Pots
LL

BasketBall Moms


Who in the world are basketball moms? Glad you asked. I’m going to define basketball moms as those women who live in the working income communities of large cities, have school aged children and are employed in low paying retail or service jobs. (between $7 and $12 dollars an hour) As the title suggest their children are much more likely to spend time at the local basketball court instead of a soccer field or hockey rink.

Basketball moms are not regarded as the middle class but they do make up the new working class of this country. And let’s be clear. These people work. They do not sit at home and collect a check from the government. For those who wish to question that fact and live near a typical large city just check out a suburban mall or the local airport, many supermarkets or your average doctor’s office or hospital or any number of other businesses that employ this new working class. Like most other Americans, basketball moms are law abiding citizens who play an important part in this country’s economy. And like most of their soccer and hockey counterparts basketball moms are concerned with their children’s education and well-being. Unlike many of their counterparts however basketball moms are far more vulnerable to fluctuations in the economy. Their salaries don’t offer much flexibility when gas, home heating oil and food prices begin climb.

I’m not surprised at the lack of attention basketball moms get during the election cycle. Most politicians are far more interested in identifying with the ‘hard-working suburban middle-class’ who we’re told are the backbone of this country. Consequently, Bball moms get few visits from the candidates or even their running mates. (Though Sen. Obama did a four spot swing through Philly this past Saturday. Other than that however I know of no other times when the candidates visited the average basketball mom community). But again this isn’t surprising.

What does concern me is how the lack of interest in basketball moms can indicate that they and their issues are somehow less important than those of soccer or hockey moms. I’m not saying that basketball moms are poor (though I do believe that many of our new permanent working class live precariously close to the margins of society) nor am I advocating that the government shower them with money as if they were a mismanaged investment bank.

But since the president pledges to govern the United States of America shouldn’t he at least listen to the concerns of basketball moms? I ask this because it does seem that for the foreseeable future the country will have a new permanent working class. However due to a number of factors this working class may spend much of their lives walking the tightrope between making it and poverty. The cost of health care, (many of them don’t have employer sponsored health plans) housing and college may permanently lock them and their children into a lifestyle of barely getting by.

And I wonder if it’s in the long-term interest of this country to have a group of people who indeed work but can’t imagine their work ever really paying off or that their children will be able to secure the kind of education that will propel them into better careers. Nor do I believe that it will do to merely dismiss them to find their own way into the middle class while their government provides hundreds of billions of dollars to companies whose executives make a hundred times more than they. I have no problem with our politicians speaking to the concerns of soccer mom Susie or hockey mom Heather. But if we are to grow into becoming one nation our leaders along with the rest of us must also speak to the issues of basketball mom Brenda.

To Him Who Loves Us…
Pastor lance

Ace In The Cole


The Phiting Phils are back in the show. Paced by NLCS MVP Cole Hamels the Phillies earned their first trip to the World Series in 15 years.

Celebrations are breaking out all over Philly (what do you want we don’t win much around here).

Now onto the Series to bring home the bacon and paint the town red.

Go Phils
LL

Friday, October 10, 2008

Love Your Enemies?



The final stretch has begun. With about three weeks to go the nation’s highest office is still up for grabs as the candidates make their final push.

My interest in this post however isn’t in making an endorsement or even examining a particular position. I want to talk about us. What us you ask? The us that claims to belong to the King of kings and Lord of lords. I’ve already written about how this is yet another election that will reveal the very real political differences of God’s people. My hope and prayer is that we will at least handle these differences biblically while striving to maintain kingdom focused unity.

One of my main concerns is our witness to those who are united with us politically yet apart from us spiritually. That concern springs from the reality that many with whom we agree with politically have a narrow, short-sighted view with respect to politics in particular and life in general. By this I don’t mean that they’re utterly foolish people who lack the intelligence and sophistication to see this country’s challenges from multiple perspectives. I do mean that lacking a biblical perspective on life, the future and ultimate reality they actually believe that the political process offers the best way to the kind of lifestyle and country they wish to have. Many of them genuinely believe that if their candidate isn’t elected the country will unravel, things will begin to fall apart and desperate and dire times will certainly arrive. For them a victory by their man is the only thing that stands between what America is today and what may be a drastically different America.

Such people can begin to view their candidate’s opponent and those who support him in the worst possible light. You see without a biblical perspective their only hope is in life in the here and now. And the factor that weighs most heavily in the here and now is the nation’s political process. Lose out in politics, lose out in life. By the grace and power of God those who trust in Jesus Christ have been freed from such a mindset. Our ultimate confidence in a better future isn’t centered on Pennsylvania Avenue, Wall Street or Main St. Thus we are free to work for the good of our community, region, nation and world with the full confidence that God is still seated on His throne and will be there on Wednesday Nov. 5th regardless of who is elected the next president. That doesn’t mean we have to ignore the political process. It’s just that we can engage it without the feeling of absolute dread and despair should our candidate lose.

And this is why it’s imperative that we serve as kingdom focused witnesses to those who are united with our party but not to our Lord. Many of them may be terrified at the prospect of an Obama or McCain administration. Driven by fear they may say and even be willing to do things that cause or exacerbate lasting and bitter divisions within the country. They will view their political opponents as enemies and in desperation treat them that way. How can we be a witness in this atmosphere? Think about it for a moment. How do believers treat their enemies? Did our Lord have anything to say on the subject? What did the apostles teach and write about this? Our witness during this time is the way that we treat, regard and respect our political opponents. We follow the dictates of scripture regarding how we treat our enemies while refusing to just join our crowd and thus give in to the desires of our sinful nature. Why do we do this? We do so because as important as this election is we are the ones who can show those united with us politically yet apart from us spiritually that there are matters even weightier than the direction and state of this country.

But perhaps even more than that the people of the living God are determined to treat those who oppose us with kindness because that’s how the Lord treated us when we were His enemies. Need proof? Check this out.

For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only this, but we also exult in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation. Rom. 5:6-11.

Who are the ungodly to which Paul referred? It’s us. We were ungodly. And it didn’t matter if we carried our ungodliness in a more moral manner than others. There was enough ungodliness within us to earn the just, fair, fierce, certain and eternal punishment of the living God. What did it mean for us to be God’s enemies? (vs. 10) It meant that we were opposed and hostile to God’s Person, worship, rule, word, will, ways, agenda, salvation and Son. And once again it didn’t matter if we carried out our opposition in a more moral manner than others. What could we have done about our situation? Nothing. Absolutely nothing. We were helpless and completely without power to change ourselves or our destiny.

How did God therefore treat those of us who were His enemies? He committed His Son to live a perfect life for us, die to pay the penalty our rebellion had earned and then rise from the dead proving the Father accepted His sinless life and sacrificial death. Did this happen once we awoke to the fact that we were enemies and pleaded for God to do something? Nope. God demonstrated the depth of His love for His enemies in this specific manner: While we were still spewing our venomous hostility toward God, His rule, worship, will, word, ways, and agenda Jesus Christ His Son died for our sins. What would have happened had God determined to deal with us fairly, give us what we deserve and treat us as enemies? Damnation. Total, unrelenting, unending, punishing damnation.

And one of the best times for us to highlight these precious truths is election time. And one of the best ways for us to highlight them is to treat those who oppose us the way the living God has treated us.

To Him Who Loves Us…
Pastor Lance

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Kings Clip Air Force One


Go Steve Go! Let by Slippery Steve Slaton the CrockPot Kings posted our 5th straight victory. Steve rushed for over 90 yards and hit pay dirt twice racking up the most points for the Pots. And we needed it because for the most part everybody else bombed. Everybody that is except for my man Michael ‘yeah I can burn on the road too’ Turner. I stayed with my gut and played the new dirty bird who rewarded me with over a hundred and twenty yards and one score. Staying with names that begin with 'M', Matt 'nothing but the bottom of the crossbar' Prater blasted another 50+ yarder. If you're in a league and he's available get him. Get him now.

Now onto next week and we have problems. Our receiver corps totaled 7 points. That’s not 7 points for one guy, that’s seven with all three combined. Santonio is on a bye this week, but I do get Jericho C back at home against Cincy. I don’t know what’s going on in Detroit but hopefully they get it fixed and get Megatron the ball. I also decided to pick up Bernard Berrian since he is the Vikes #1 wideout and gets to face the toothless lions at home.
I’d consider a trade for top flight flanker but all of them seem so up and down this year. So for now I’ll stay pat and hope for the best. See you Friday.

Go Pots
LL

Friday, October 03, 2008

Fantasy Football Friday - Week 5


Another Friday another decision. Thankfully we still have Daring Drew Brees leading the passing attack and we get Calvin 'Megatron' Johnson back in the receiving corps. I'm sticking with Santonio 'split the seam' Holmes and hoping the Steelmen will throw it more now that they're down to their fourth string RB. I've plugged Amani 'GQ' Toomer in at the other wideout position since Jericho C is taking a much deserved break and Mr. Burress has been asked to take a week off. Picked up Anthony Fasano to man the TE spot with hopes that he can burn the Bolts like Zack Miller did last week. Mike 'give me 50 baby' Prater handles the kicking game and I've held my nose and pegged Big D's D. (sorry Philly for this act of treachery but they should be able to generate some points against Cincy's kittens).

The issue is the running game. Last week the Michael Turner and Marshawn Lynch combined for a total of 11 points. And that just ain't going to cut it especially since I'm going up against 'LT' this week. I've got four RB's for two slots. Turner is at Green Bay and so far hasn't done well on the road and against teams with good defenses. However, Green Bay's D is a bit beaten up and has a few starters out this week. Marshawn travels to the left coast to meet the Cards. Chris 'Flash' Johnson is on the road against Baltimore and Steve 'Philly Boy' Slaton is home against the Colts. I'm leaning on playing Turner and Slaton. Slaton is getting more involved in the Texan's offense which uses him effectively as rusher and receiver. He's also home against the Colts who are without all world safety Bob Sanders.

But what do you think? Of the four who should start and who should ride the pine.

Go Pots
LL

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Peas In A Pod


I have a predication to make regarding the presidential election. And this is a predication that you can take to the bank (provided there are any you still trust). Despite who wins this next election most bible believing African-Americans will pull the lever for Sen. Barack Obama while most white evangelicals will cast a ballot for Sen. John McCain. There are many reasons for this and while I doubt that we'll be able to explore all of them before the election I want to put forth a little proposal.

Despite our political differences bible believing blacks and evangelical whites are two peas in a pod. Both groups are subcultures within the larger society complete with their own traditions, history, customs and lingo. Both are viewed somewhat negatively within the larger society. Neither group trusts the mainstream media all that much and both carry a general feeling of being on the outside looking in. Both groups are loyal soldiers of their respective political parties but at times feel taken for granted. Both groups are extremely important in national elections and are counted to deliver by their respective parties. Moreover, it’s unlikely that the Republicans could win without the support of a good number of white evangelicals, nor could the Democrats re-capture the White House without a large turnout of bible-believing African-Americans. Despite this however neither group seems to get what it wants from those they support.

So here's the deal. Why don't we forge an alliance? We could agree on a common set of issues and throw our support behind the candidate who vows to promote them. An impossible dream you say? Perhaps. But though it wouldn't be easy we might be able to change the very nature of upcoming elections. Think of the possibility of candidates having to consider the primary issues of a voting bloc that consists of multiple millions of bible believing African-Americans and multiple millions of white evangelicals? What would it be like to have a pro-life candidate who spoke with as much enthusiasm for the interests of basketball moms as he or she did for soccer moms? How might the race for the nation's highest office change once a candidate had to address the top two or three concerns of both groups? And how might we work to address the needs of others as a witness of God's righteousness, wisdom and compassion?

How could this happen? Perhaps with both groups getting to know each other, understanding where each is coming from and having some genuine humility with respect to the issues they hold important. Such a step is both necessary and significant for we have to comprehend what drives us to vote the way we do. It will also be important for us to establish the important essentials of the gospel and the supremacy of God's kingdom. That will help us to keep our political ambitions in proper place. From there we can hash through the issues to be addressed recognizing the limits of the political process and be willing to accept that no one gets everything they want in any political situation.

Most of all, we can commit to following this course not just for the good of the country but for the strength of our witness. And that could be the action that puts shoe leather to the words of unity we often speak but for any number of reasons can't seem to demonstrate apart from a stray joint worship service. That witness could shine especially as we champion our unity with our brothers and sisters in Christ over the unity we have with those who agree with our politics. And that’s at least worth dreaming about.

To Him Who Loves Us…
Pastor Lance