Saturday, March 21, 2009

Top Search Queries

Just noticed that [LAPSE... brain dead] (the blog you're reading, although you might be reading it in a feed reader or an e-mail subscription or a Facebook note) is highly featured at the following Google queries (search positions as of the time of this posting):
In case you're interested in such things.

As per the last post, I have decided it's probably a good idea to read Ephesians 4 each morning until the behavior it describes becomes predominant in all aspects of my life. In particular, those morning and evening commutes are quite stressful for me at times since people don't seem to know how to drive, and my thoughts don't necessarily meet the standards I'm called to uphold (that is, to live "a God-fashioned life, a life renewed from the inside and working itself into your conduct as God accurately reproduces his character in you"). Sometime I plan to put together an explanatory video of why it's important, courteous, and safer for someone to move from the left lane to the right after passing, even if planning to pass the next person a little ways down, let the guy behind go by, and then move back to the left lane for the next pass. But not today - today we're heading to Pensacola to the AWANA games (the younger two are both participating), and then we'll be hanging out at my parents' house for a while.

Thursday, March 19, 2009


Boy, my ankles are hurting. Particularly my right one - the one I sprained back in October. I went walking again tonight... about a mile. Does it eventually get easier if I keep it up on a regular basis?

Last night I accompanied Alex for a talent show tryout; he did 500 Miles by the proclaimers, similar to the following video:

Yeah, I did the guitar, he sang. I think we need to get him a tambourine for the actual talent show (yes, he made it). It was kind of funny: we went in and one of the girls judging asked, "What are you going to sing for us?" And Alex said, "500 Miles." She replied, "You mean the one that goes, 'I would walk 500 miles' [in a sung manner]? I know that song - my brother and I used to sing that! How neat!"

The principle, who'd been over adjusting the sound system (as the mic was a little hot and he knew that Alex would have no trouble singing into the mic since he'd done the solo at their choir concert, "Beatles Revue"), came back and asked what he was going to sing, and commented something like, "We're in a generation that remembers that song" (or something like that - I didn't hear him very clearly). So I played, Alex sang, and he's in. We did it up 3 half steps (key of G instead of E) to make it fit his vocal range a little better.

By the way, I really like that version from the video - a guitar, a tambourine, and their voices. Pretty nice. Oh, and we changed the lyric from "when I get drunk" to "when I have fun" ("I'm gonna be the man who's havin' fun with you") - much safer, especially for a 10-year-old.

Well, about 6 months in the new house now, and we're still not unpacked. Guess it's time to just throw away the things we haven't unpacked, eh?

If you want a challenge, take a look at Ephesians 4. Imagine what it would be like if we (Christians) all lived that!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Review of Think and Make It Happen: Good even for psychiatry skeptics

In short, I think that most people would be well served to read Think and Make It Happen (by Dr. Augusto Cury).  Its techniques have the potential to improve quality of life and to help people understand some of the reasons why they may be having particular mental-related issues and how to overcome them.

I was very interested in reading this book based on its description and, in particular, Max Lucado’s comment regarding its psychological analysis of Jesus of Nazareth.  I’m not sure I’ve ever really considered a “psychological” look at Jesus.  As Lucado says, “It sheds new light” on Him.  It also shows how to apply His ways of thinking to our own particular situations.

However, I also approached the book with skepticism.  I’ve never put much stock in psychology.  After reading this book, though, I have a new appreciation for the science of psychology and the lack of preparation that we (the human race) give our children during their schooling and upbringing.  With the increasing number of psychotic episodes experienced in modern times, I think the ideas described in this book are definitely worth exploring.

As stated in the introduction, “we humans are collectively becoming more mentally and emotionally ill.”  The premise behind the book’s chapters is looking at “thinking correctly” and what that encompasses.  Through a series of twelve chapters, the author looks at twelve principles aimed at transforming the reader’s thinking into a more positive, healthy mental atmosphere.  Throughout the book he considers the psychological aspects of Jesus’ life and ministry as well as current applications (examples) from his years of practice as a psychiatrist.  He offers practical ways to integrate the principles into your own thinking as well as exercises aimed at a small-group type setting (in fact, the book can be used as a textbook for a small group and provides assistance for the leader of the group, including suggested time frames and hints for separate stages of the group meetings).

The book is well written with a minimum of typographical or grammatical errors (things that I tend to notice).  There are some places where acronyms are used in ways that they may have been forgotten or not clearly defined, but the index provides a quick reference of the acronyms in use in the book (look there if you’re reading and you forget what something like “AMR” means).

I highly recommend this book – even if you don’t agree with everything in it (I don’t), there is enough present to help explain some of the ways that we think and to provide assistance in overcoming common pitfalls of thinking that can lead to diminished quality of life.  It’s not a “quick cure” kind of thing, but putting the principles the book outlines into practice can help improve your thinking – and your life.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Rock, me?

Ever feel like a rock (see "The Message" version for the direct reference).

Sorry, short night.  That's it.  (Feel free to expand this post by way of comment.)

Monday, March 16, 2009

Peripherality of the Church and the World

Reading tonight from Ephesians, I noticed this phrase (from "The Message" version):
The church, you see, is not peripheral to the world; the world is peripheral to the church.
I have an idea of what that means to me, but I was curious what it means to you.  Care to share?

Totally unrelatedly, are descendants the ones who go really deep to feed the queen & care for the babies?

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Eyebrows and the universe

Last night I realized something.  My wife looked at me and started laughing, and asked, "What's that look for?"  (Yes, I realize that's incorrect grammar, but that's how she asked it.)  

I said, "What?"

And she said, "You raised your eyebrow!"

And that's when I realized: my eyebrows have the power to push the entire universe, starting with my forehead and from there the earth, galaxy, and the entire universe, down about a quarter inch!  Totally amazing.  Does anyone else have this amazing power?  I wonder if Einstein realized the incomprehensible density contained within an eyebrow that would allow it to push around the entire universe.

I also had some ideas for inventions last night:
  • toenail clipping bag: this is a clear plastic bag with hand-holes and a foot-hole so that you can put your toenail clippers and foot into the bag, insert your hands into the hand-holes, and then manipulate your toes and the clippers to clip your toenails in a sanitary manner, not losing any of the little clippings to be stepped on later; yes, there is a similar hard-plastic device that attaches to a set of toenail clippers, but you have to empty it just about every nail, and it sometimes missed the nail clippings; I did a USPTO search (online), and didn't find anything, and the 7 hits from the Google Patent Search didn't quite have a match, either
  • trash-sucker: you open the lid, which starts the vacuum outside, then you insert your trash, and the vacuum sucks the trash outside to right over your trashcan; when you close the lid, the vacuum operates for a little while longer (to make sure it has time to suck all the trash close) then shuts off and the outside trash can "trap door" opens to allow the trash to fall into the can (the vacuum vents into the can as well so that liquid and smaller trash particles will be send to the can instead of vented to the atmosphere); awesome: you don't have to take the trash out of the house anymore!
On a more serious note, Galatians 5:25 says (from The Message; the link is to multiple versions):
Since this [referring to a life in Christ] is the kind of life we have chosen, the life of the Spirit, let us make sure that we do not just hold it as an idea in our heads or a sentiment in our hearts, but work out its implications in every detail of our lives.
Hmm... every detail, huh?  You mean everything, every little thing?  Guess I need to re-evaluate some things.  Reminded me of my friend Dean's blog, which has a super-great quote about surrender:
Similarly, we can attempt to hand over one area of our life to God and completely miss the fact that we're hanging on to another. This is not surrender. (I suppose some might call it "partial surrender," but since when does the person who's surrendering dictate the terms of the surrender?)

Yeah... surrender... in everything.  I love the quip: "since when does the person who's surrendering dictate the terms of the surrender?"  Think I might put that on my Facebook profile.

On a less serious note, do you know what a mandate is?  It's when a guy goes somewhere with one of the guys instead of with his girl...

Later, all.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

One True God

I think I really like this song:

We were reading in Galatians tonight, chapter 4, and this is what stood out to me the most (and this is most obvious from "The Message" version; the link goes to a multiple-version lookup of the entirety of chapter 4): the reason Paul originally preached in Galatia was not because he thought God wanted him there, or that he had planned to stop there and preach.  No, he had other plans... and God interrupted him, making him sick, unable to continue to travel.  And what did Paul do when this happened, this interruption of his plans?  Complain?  Sulk?  No, he preached, converted a town, started a church.

What do we "modern Pauls" do when our plans are interrupted?

I hadn't planned on blogging tonight, but there you go.  Bonus.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

EDAR: $500

OK, weird title, right?  I'll share a link to the article in a moment (obviously you can skip ahead if you want), but here's the idea: portable (on wheels) base, mattress, and sleeping bag, and covered with zipping canvas (sort of like a mobile tent).  Light, flame retardent, and rain-proof.  Costs about $500 to make.  EDAR: "Everyone Deserves A Roof."  They're being distributed to LA's homeless population.

What a great idea, right?  Some great Christian humanitarian must've spent a lot of time and effort to come up with this scheme, right?  Well, surprise, it came from the mind of the producer of "Revenge of the Nerds" - not exactly what you'd expect as the source.  PLEASE NOTE: I don't mean to demean the guy, Peter Samuelson; bear with me while I get to my point.  The point: what have I done to help the homeless?  What have you done?  A good word?  A prayer?  Here's the article, go read that now, but then come back here.

My friend Dean has, I think, started to get this.  If you spend some time reading his Blog, you'll see what I mean.  He has started actually doing for the less fortunate.  He's started living the type of faith that James promotes.  Scratch that - the kind of faith that GOD promotes, through the writing of His servant James.  (Yes, I know that link goes to James 2, and it's the end of chapter 1 where it talks about "Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God"... but it's chapter 2 where it really gets into the meat of works going hand-in-hand with faith - it's not the works that saves you, but it's the works that may - ultimately - help to save someone else by turning a hardened heart towards the love of God outstretched through your generous, willing, servant hands, and they (the works) are the demonstration of the faith that has saved you.)

Anyway, back to the homeless thing... for example, one guy in the article has been homeless off and on since 1979; and he's a computer repair guy!  (Wait, I'm in the computer industry...) Another lady said (of the EDAR):
It's a step up to you. It's like you're making progress.  Now, I have me a little place to stay. I'm moving up.
And we complain when our dinner's served a little slow at Logan's Roadhouse (as the guy in the next booth was doing to the waiter who was on his first day at the job).  We complain when the over-the-air high-def signal skips a second or two of our favorite TV show that we're watching our 50" plasma TV (it was a gift!) while sitting on our comfortable recliner in our 4-bedroom, 2-bath, air-conditioned and heated house.  We complain about the cost of fuel and 10% tax on our Burger King lunch.  Shame on me.  Wait, I mean, shame on us.

Said Peter Samuelson, who started thinking about this while riding his bike through LA and, seeing the homeless, started taking the time to stop and talk with them instead of riding on by and thinking bad about them:
People talk about the homeless as if it's some homogeneous group of drunken, unemployed, too-lazy-to-get-a-job men. They're totally wrong. They need to come meet people.  What's the point in having a society if it's devoid of helping people less fortunate?
I don't know if he's Christian... but those of us who are (claiming to be) followers of Christ, where's our participation?  Why didn't we do this long ago?  Or perhaps bring them (the homeless) into our homes or church fellowships or ... wait, have I gone to far now?  (And, I realize, some do these things - and I applaud you!)

So I was talking about this with the family at dinner at Logan's Roadhouse tonight, and my daughter asked, "So what are you going to do about it, dad?"  (Ouch.)   "Well," I replied, "I'm going to blog about it.  Words are my weapons!"  I was jesting... somewhat (I am blogging about it, aren't I?  But, yes, I'd planned to do this already).  But what am I going to do about it?  The choir is going this weekend to sing at the Waterfront Rescue Mission (I'm taking my guitar and sax along, too), but clearly that's not sufficient.  I did offer a guy a ride from Daphne to Pensacola a few weeks back (he was on his way to Dothan), and we gave him some of the drinks and snacks we had in the van with us when we let him out, and prayed for him.  But, clearly, that's not enough.
Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you. (James 1:27)
Is this going to change my life?  Why hasn't it already... the love of the Lord, why haven't I allowed it to take me completely, even to walk barefoot 'n' naked for three if that's what it takes? God doesn't want us to be uncomfortable (I do not believe that He does); He wants us to be obedient and dependent on Him.  And He wants us to try to gather everyone to Him, to be His witnesses.  What would you be willing to do if God asked?  And are you listening to find out what He might ask you to do?  It's easy (debatable, I know) to die for Christ, not always so easy to live for Him.  But why is that?  What is it about us that keeps putting us first?  Pride, that's what. And pride, of course, equates to idolatry, since it's putting ourselves before God.  Ever heard that saying, "Let go and let God"?  Time to do that... time to let go of ourselves and let God direct our steps.

Go read Dean's blog now... it's much better than mine.  And then go do whatever it is that God's been asking you to do and you've been rationalizing away.  It's not going to kill you, and even if it does, you'll be better off anyway, eh?

Excuse our progress

Yes, you're in the right place.  I never did quite finish my previous template (I was going to have dropping Matrix-like characters, and I did get it working for FireFox but not for IE, so I never turned it on).  It also doesn't work well in Google Chrome, so I'm abandoning it.

I kind of like this new look, but kind of not.  And it's only partially "there" (as far as all my previous side-links).  So it's a "work in progress" (I'm still searching for a good, new template for it; any suggestions?).

But what does "excuse our progress" mean, anyway?  You see that all the time now... do you really want me to forgive your improvement?  Way down, you know, I'm wishing you were still as messed up as you were previously.  Right.  That really doesn't make sense... it's not the progress that needs excusing, it's the method to implement the progress that needs excusing.  I suppose the signs should say:
"Excuse our method of implementing progress during this interim time period during which you may find yourself somewhat inconvenienced while we improve things so that it will be much better for you in the future."
Yeah, what he said...

Monday, March 9, 2009

Mind blowing

OK, post-Bible-reading discussion thoughts here, a couple to blow your mind (at least one I think I've mentioned before, but it's not showing up properly when I try to link it directly).
  1. God's word: God created the universe - that is, everything around us, from the universe so large that we can't see its end to its constituent parts so small we can't really see them even with the most powerful microscopes, and that's not really seeing them as much as having some record of them - anyway, He created all of that out of nothing.  Literally nothing.  (You've heard about the scientists who discovered how to create life, right?  They went to God and said, "God, we don't need you anymore; we can create life ourselves! So God said, "Oh, really, why don't you show me?" So the scientists started to gather together a little bit of dirt, and God interrupted and said, "Uh-uh, go get your own dirt!")  Anyway, again, back to our story... how did He create all of this (including you and me and the electrons that are frantically allowing me to type in all this stuff and Google's Blogger to store it and your ISP to deliver it to you and you to read it)?  He spoke.  "God said... and it was."  (Slight paraphrase there, but you know the story; if not, grab a Bible and read Genesis.)  Well... guess what?  That same word, that POWERFUL word, was put into a book for you and me.  Yes, the Bible.  That same, powerful word... the word that has the power to create everything out of nothing... that's what the Bible is.  When you read it... when you memorize it... when you speak it... you're reading, memorizing, speaking God's word, the word that has the power to create everything out of nothing!  That word, that powerful word, has the power not only to create, but to save.  You, me, your friend, the bad guy down the hall... all are simply waiting on God's word.  So read it; memorize it; pray it back to Him; speak it... powerful words.  And don't be frugal with that power!  Share it with everyone around you.
  2. Here's another interesting thing: God's word.  "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God... All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made... And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory..." (excerpts from John 1:1-14, NKJV).  "And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to the disciples and said, 'Take, eat; this is My body,'" (from Matthew 26:26).  "But He answered and said, 'It is written, "Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God,"'" (from Matthew 4:4, where Jesus was rebuking Satan during His temptation).  So... Jesus is the word, Jesus (by analogy) said we must partake of His body as "the bread of life" (to so speak), and man shall not live "by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God."  That is, the very Bible - God's word - became flesh, Jesus, who took our place, and by his sacrifice - by our partaking of Him (as the bread of life, the word of God), we are saved.  That is the word that you are partaking when you read the Bible - the powerful, life-giving word of God, the word that became human, Jesus.
I'm sorry if you don't agree, and maybe I took some liberties with these points... but they're pretty mind-blowing to me.

Makes you want to memorize some scripture, doesn't it?

Bonus points for reading this far: "God's word"... "For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart," (Hebrews 4:12).  God's word... "God sword" - just remove the apostrophe and slide the space one character to the left, and you convert "God's word" into "God sword"!  OK, now I'm really reaching...

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Alligator, anyone?

I was just perusing the various Alabama licensing requirements and fees, possibly going to renew a fishing license, and noticed this (yes, I know the following "list" is poorly formatted; get over it- I'm in a hurry!):
  • Alligator Farm: $1,000.00
  • -- Allows residents to engage in business of raising alligators for restocking, propagation, and other commercial purposes.
  • Alligator Parts Dealer: $100.00
  • -- Allows residents to deal in alligator parts and to buy partsfrom an alligator farmer for the purpose of reselling or manufacturing.
  • Alligator Retailer: $5.00
  • -- Allows residents to purchase alligator parts and sell canned alligator parts and allows restaurant to sell alligator meat for consumption.
Ok then... never knew that.  Guess it's good information in case I want to start working in the Alligator farming/trading field, eh?

Weird: I already have a label for "alligators"... when did I post on that before?  I may have to go re-read some of my old blog posts!

Friday, March 6, 2009

Missing Post

I'd sent a post from my phone last night, but apparently it's lost in interneverland somewhere.

Oh well.

My wife just asked, "Are you so hungry that you'd rather have instant potatoes than having to wait on home-made mashed potatoes?"

Argh... an unanswerable question... 

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Textual editing applications - and the problem with Christian radio

Ever notice that Christian radio stations (OK, how exactly a radio station becomes a follower of Christ I'm not quite sure... but that's what they're generally called, I think) is that they don't fit any particular genre of music other than (vaguely) Christian.  For instance, in four back-to-back songs you might run the gamut of hard rock, pop, country, and R&B/Hip-hop/rap (yeah, I may be grouping those last incorrectly).  What other radio station ever would play such a mix?  I dare say on a secular station you're not going to hear country, hip-hop, and hard rock in consecutive - or even well-spaced-out - blocks.  Yet we do it on our single "contemporary Christian music" station.

Weird.  And I don't really like most "country Christian music" (I'm not talking gospel or southern gospel - that's a different thing altogether).  Like, for instance, Natalie Grant... I have to say I'm not very fond of most things I've heard of hers.  It's all so depressing... and that's not quite what the Jesus I know wanted for us ("My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life" - Jesus, in John 10:10, NLT).  To me the song "Held" ... wait, I'm not going there.  I know that song means different things to different people, and I don't want to mess it up for you if you like it.  (If you want to know what I think about it, please ask me personally - my e-mail's around here somewhere.)  Anyway, in short, I'm not a Natalie Grant fan.  I'm also generally not a Christian Rap or hip-hop fan, although I do like Toby Mac and (the former) DC Talk.  And I did have a tape of the Rap-Sures once upon a time ("OT Rap" ... "Joseph's Coat of Many Colors" ... etc.).  But my point is this: why don't we have categorized Christian Radio?  (I think I can hear someone vaguely whispering "satellite radio... satellite radio...")

Now for the other portion of the title of this post.  I was regaling a coworker today of my distaste for Microsoft's Visual Studio's code editor's design which does NOT reposition the cursor to the point of undo/redo when CTRL+Z or CTRL+SHIFT+Z is pressed.  I mentioned how much I like to use that feature in other textual editing applications to restore my position to where I last was editing (by undoing and then re-doing whatever my last edit was in order to reposition the cursor... and Visual Studio's code editor doesn't do that - it does the undo/redo, but doesn't even bother to scroll you to where the undo/redo is taking place so you can see what's going on! and when you have hundreds or thousands of lines of code and have jumped to another place in the file in order to see what subroutine abc() does and then want to get back to where you were editing... well, it would be nice if the undo/redo trick worked).  He said, "textual editing application? really?"

Yes, really.  I explained myself: I wasn't talking about a simple text editor (such as Notepad), which is a textual editing application.  I typically was referring to something like Microsoft Word, which is a textual editing application, but it isn't a text editor.  In fact, the documents you are editing - while editing text - are usually not text documents, but Word documents.  And, in fact, if you ever took a look at the file in a real text editor, you'll see that it's not really text that you're editing.  Thus, the moniker "textual editing application" was, in fact, more accurate than "text editor" - even though it does sound a bit strange.  But I like it.  One of my favorite textual editing applications is the open-source Notepad++; it's a significant improvement over standard Notepad (although I do still use that often for quick things, usually stuff like copy/paste where I want to remove formatting from a web site before pasting into a blog post or for things like keeping track of something that I need to do - like a post-it note for my computer, it's much quicker (for me) than trying to get to the sticky notes included in Outlook - the Windows key + R opens the "run" dialog and then I type "notepad" and press enter... wala, it's there!).  Notepad++ is a great, extensible (means "you can extend it") editor that can handle formatting for a variety of languages/files (XML, various programming languages, SQL, HTML, etc.; it evens handles text files!).  But a "text editor" it isn't - it's so much more.


So, I guess I've caved on the American Idol thing.  It's in its 8th season, so it's about time that I started liking the show.  I rarely like anything when it first comes out, instead waiting usually until it's only in reruns before I start watching it (like I did with Star Trek: The Next Generation).  I doubt AI will resurface in reruns (well, on mainstream channels... with the advent of quadruple-digit numbers of channels in cable/satellite land, it's bound to end up in reruns somewhere, but what's the point?), so I'll have to start watching it now.  Sort of like Survivor - I skipped the first few seasons, but I like the show now.  On the other hand, Heroes is one I've liked since it premiered (Noah Bennet is my favorite character; Hiro Nakamura is second; Daphne is probably third, or possibly Sylar; my least favorite? Peter Petrelli, Claire Bennet, and probably Matt Parkman).

Ah, well, guess that's enough for this post.  Until later... a topato!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Thoughts. Real ones.

We were reading tonight in 1st Peter, chapter two (I've started a nightly Bible reading with the family... it's awesome! Not really a Bible study, although sometimes we discuss what we've read, instead just letting God's powerful, awesome Word do its thing in our family; we've been reading out of "The Message (Remix)" as it seems to be an easy-to-read version for the variety of ages of our family - almost "Word Light" so to speak).  Anyway... onto the thoughts.

Well, not specifically related to the sequential reading (warning: jumbled thoughts may be on the verge of escaping my cranium through my fingertips!), we discussed (over the last couple of nights) cups.  From an evening sermon illustration our pastor relayed, if your "cup" (that is you, your vessel) is filled with junk, like pens, it's awfully hard to fill it with God's spirit (like a cup full of pens or Mardi Gras beads is hard to FILL with water).  Further, if your cup is "bumped" by someone during the course of the day, what is it that spills out onto that person?  Is it flaming acid (I know, acid probably doesn't actually burn; or does it? been too long since I studied chemistry!), or is it the holy, refreshing water of God's spirit?  Further still, the "filling" of the cup isn't something you can do - you just empty the cup and then immerse it under the flowing stream of God's spirit until it overflows.  And you need to keep filling it daily so that you can keep overflowing onto everyone who bumps you each day.

And how do you know that you're filled with the Spirit?  Galatians 5:22-23.  Yep, the fruit of the spirit... that's the evidence that your vessel is filled with the Spirit.  And what if something else comes out when you're bumped?  Well, you can't really blame the person who bumped you for what you've put into your vessel.

Anyway... back to the reading of 1 Peter 2 (that's 1st Peter, chapter 2).  From vs 1-3:
"So clean house! Make a clean sweep of malice and pretense, envy and hurtful talk."
Now, let's think a little further... like over in Romans 12:19-21:
 17-19Don't hit back; discover beauty in everyone. If you've got it in you, get along with everybody. Don't insist on getting even; that's not for you to do. "I'll do the judging," says God. "I'll take care of it."

 20-21Our Scriptures tell us that if you see your enemy hungry, go buy that person lunch, or if he's thirsty, get him a drink. Your generosity will surprise him with goodness. Don't let evil get the best of you; get the best of evil by doing good.
So... if someone affronts you, and you "get even," guess what?  You're putting yourself in GOD's position!  Wow... self-idolatry.  Not so good, eh?  In fact, this is what got us all in trouble in the first place... the origin of sin: pride, wanting to put ourselves in the place of God.  It happened in Eden (silly woman! heh-heh, I know, I know...).  It happened in my life (yes, really), and it happened in yours (yes, really).  After all, the person affronting you isn't really sinning against you - (s)he's sinning against God.

Disagree?  What about David's confession in Psalm 51, where he says (in one way or another depending on your version), "Against you, you only, have I sinned" - that is, his sin was against God.  What sin?  Adultery, murder, lying, conspiracy... his sin affected him (his relationship with God, among other things), Bathsheba (the affair, murder of her husband), Uriah (he died, essentially - though not quite physically - by David's own hand), his entire nation (he had to lie to cover up the truth), Nathan the prophet (poor guy had to take time out of his day to go to visit the king and, after that, had to tell the king, the guy with all the power, "hey, dummy..." - yeah, yeah, I know, God's really the one with all the power - Nathan didn't fear David, but it still was time out of his day)... David's sin affected (in a negative way) lots of people, but the sin was against God alone.

So, when someone's sin affects you, that doesn't necessarily mean the sin is against you, and regardless, it's God's job to do the "getting even" - not yours.  In fact, it's actually sin when you do the getting even - sin of disobedience, sin of idolatry (you're putting yourself in God's place), sin of pride, sin of not loving your neighbor...

So, there you go... some thoughts.  I think I'd never thought about the "getting even" in this way, that you're putting yourself in God's place, which is (essentially) the root of all sin.

Wait... that's not all!  Stay tuned and you'll get even more thoughts!  About this whole "putting ourselves in God's place" thing... well, because we did that, then God had to put himself in our place (via coming in the form of a man, Jesus, and taking our place in terms of the punishment for our sins).  We put ourselves in God's place, and as a result he put himself in our place so that we can get back to him.  Pretty cool, eh?  And that's all.  For now.