Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Weekend Update!

It's taken me a couple of days to process all that took place on Saturday. Thank you to those who have continued to pray! Your prayers have been felt without question. Thank you as well for the checks up however you've sent them.

Saturday morning, four of us headed out at 7:15 a.m..... my mother, her boyfriend, hubby, and myself. We decided it would be best to let the boys stay in G-town. That decision was not made lightly, but ended up being the right one without a doubt! We were gone a total of 12 hours...

Overall, I can say that the ride to and from went rather smoothly. Again, the prayers were greatly felt and known intimately. It was the in-between that I'm still working on.

My uncle Dale requested to be cremated. He also did not want any flowers. So, needless to say - it was rather different from most services I've attended or been part of. His wife, daughter, two sons, their spouses and children were there. I was greatly saddened by the lack of attendance by the majority of our extended family however - not even half showed up....

My uncle Joe was in rare form.. Hubby didn't have to fill in for him like we thought might happen. Uncle Joe told me as we were preparing to leave that he is done being the marrying and burying pastor for our family. He's officially passed the baton to hubby now. Uncle Joe has cancer too. He handled his brother's service with much dignity, grace, and never forgetting to take the opportunity to talk about Jesus and Heaven. And I was beyond thankful. Given that he has been told there's nothing else that doctors can do for him either - it came across with much concern for those he'll be leaving behind. He never got one name wrong either.. With such a large extended family as ours - that happens often!

My aunt Jane - Dale's wife and I spent some real in-depth time talking. It was my conversation with her and Dale's grown children that still has me processing things. She talked about my role in the family - especially in the last five years. Dale's grown children did too. And about hubby's as well. She specifically said to me, "Camey? I believe God healed you because our family couldn't have handled your dying. We need you to get us through these deaths. Your place in the family is known by all of us. It is greatly appreciated." What does a person do with that? I must confess - it made my heart heavy. No, not because of being physically healed.... I remain thankful for that.

My uncle had served the USA in the armed services years ago. Taps was played as was a flag unfolded, folded again, and given to his wife with the Country's thanks. One couldn't help but notice the memorial with all the names of individuals from that little country town who had or are currently serving. Yes, I stopped and prayed for all those families represented.

There was lots of talk about Dale being back home where he wanted to be - speaking here about the small country town we were in. As we stood at the site where he was to be buried - his children and grandchildren took turns digging the hole for the small box his ashes were in. Laughter erupted when the ground was much harder than anyone was expecting and muscle really had to be put into it. It was natural to laugh during those moments.

When the box had been covered... we all went back to the pavilion. Aunt Jane proposed a toast with champagne - one of his favorite things to drink. Some of us had Ginger Ale instead... More toasts were made - some serious and yet some funny.

When it came time for us to be heading back to the highly secure gated community, I made my rounds. As each one of his children were hugging me - they said the same thing, "I'll be calling you soon to talk!" When I told them people were praying for them and would continue - I got smiles and winks. And the one I would have least expected hugged me harder. Much harder.

So, keep praying!

A testimony from a dying world

Hello peeps of da' blog

Today's post is going to be a little strange. I am not writing as Austin son of Camey but as Evangelancer Neo X, or {ELC}Neo X. I am about to explain why. It is long winded, but please bear with me.

One of my hobbies is playing the computer game Halo. Since the beginning of 2007 I have ran a online group of Halo gamers called a 'clan', but we were a "Christian" clan. We were active for the majority of the year. The name of our clan was the Evangelancers, and my screen name was Neo X. My clan never had more than 10 members, as compared to the other "Christian" clans have around anywhere from 50-200 members.

The name comes from the Greek world Evangelion, which is an improper form of the word "Evangelism", meaning "The Good News", and "Lancers" is a type of warrior; a spearman. Therefore, "Warriors of the Good News". This type of name was not uncommon. Some of the other names are Deadly Christians, Soldiers of Christ, God's Chosen Warriors, and Children of God.

The whole point of my clan-at the time-was ministry. Particularly, evangelism. Let me describe the typical "Christian" server (online location for playing the game)

1)No cussing, name calling, inappropriate words, cheating, foul play, ect
2)Keep talk about Jesus elsewhere

That pretty much sums it up. If you were shocked by the second example, you should be. The first example is a very Pharisee-esqe quality of these servers that I also have issues with (The problem is the how the people who act against those things act) .At the end of last year, God told me to stop my 'clan', that I was missing the point. Well, I've been playing on and off earlier this year, with the intent of presenting the Gospel at each server I play on. On these "Christian" servers, I get told to keep it elsewhere and to play- by the members of that "Christian" clan.

I'm just going to let it out. I just got through giving a Gospel presentation on a Christian server. I was told to stop. Having been on two mission trips this summer, and being away from the computer for about 4 months, I find that disgusting. Repulsive. And the sad fact is, that there are probably 10 well known "Christian" servers, and all of the members of those "Christian" clans are like that. I can count maybe 4 other individuals who are like me and agree with what I'm saying.

When I give these presentations, those who aren't Christians (the overwhelming majority) come down on me. I really don't care if I get called every name in the usable English language (some of it you wouldn't believe if I told you). I try to talk to people and explain things if they question (or condemn) my words. However, the thing that makes me sick is a "Christian" player telling me to take the Gospel to somewhere else, which pretty much happens every time I do it on a "Christian" server.

I'm just going to ask you: Is that being acting like a Christian?


If I counted on my mind the total number of professed Christian gamers, the number would be about 500-600. The Halo PC total population of online players is no more than 1500. The Christians are a strong majority. They may not be the largest, but they are a respectable size (keeping in mind it is an estimate). And they are so concerned about being able to play their game that they just slap "Christian" on themselves as a gamer and be good. What would happen if they all stood together and represented the Gospel, instead of committing Matthew 10:32-33 (which, I quoted to the member of the "Christian" clan after he told me to stop).

...I'm just frustrated. We all know of those who say they are Christians but act otherwise; at school, at our jobs, wherever. If you came to the online Halo gaming community, the "Christian" populace is like that. When I began playing Halo online, I was one of those people. Now I strive not to be. Do I seriously know that every presentation will be met with condemnation by those who don't believe? How can I know that my presentations- which aren't very long and I do it only once per server visit-, are the only time that someone could hear the Gospel?

What do I know? How can I know? Why should I keep silent?

I view myself as an online revolutionary. This is my revolution. I will NOT keep quiet. I WILL tell others about Jesus when I play online, REGARDLESS of the "Christian" (by the way, in case you didn't get it, when I put quotes around the word Christian when I'm talking about the clans, I say that with much intentional sarcasm). So what if Halo is bloody and violent? Like we can't find that in the Bible anyway. People question why on Halo? I say why not. Of course I strive to witness outside of Halo, but why can't I carry the Gospel to everything I do?

Read for yourself and judge my position.

And if anyone who knows that I'm talking about them on the Halo online "Christian" community - You have just been called out for your lukewarmness.

God bless everyone who reads this, and please pray for this community. You can ask me questions if you wish,
Evangelancer Neo X (Austin, son of Camey)

P.S.- If my post seems hate-bashing, it is not. Some of my best friends are the people I speak of. I love each of them. It is for that reason I make this post.
P.S.S- There is a song by the Christian artist/worship leader Charlie Hall called "Hookers and Robbers". Please listen to it.