I’m filing stacks of paper that have surrounded my desk and noticed an odd disclaimer on our church’s quarterly giving statement. It said,
[This] Church provided no goods or services in return for these contributions except intangible religious benefits.
So, just what is an intangible religious benefit? This phrase was on the last giving statement as well. I didn’t notice it at the time – but that’s not the first time I’ve missed something blatantly in front of my eyes. That said, this phrase nor anything similar was on any giving statements from 2010 or 2011. I’m not aware of any attorneys who attend this church. My mind wonders – who got to the senior pastor and advised him to put such a disclaimer on a giving statement? Is there now a legal requirement for churches to provide such a disclaimer? Are we living in such a screwed-up politically correct separation of church & state et al legalistic society that a church’s giving statement to its congregants must state the obvious? Or, am I missing something? I’m able to apply my church offering towards all charitable giving for tax purposes. Maybe there’s some sort of VAT (value added tax) coming that will offset the deduction?
It’s been a while since I’ve delved into any Arminian/Calvinist stuff. Perhaps a break was needed. Sometimes, however, other things can come to the forefront of one’s life when, as happened yesterday, I had a one-on-one session to learn GarageBand. I took lots of notes and seemed to understand what to do to fire this program up and start recording only to get home and NOT BE ABLE TO GET IT TO WORK. This is so frustrating and so typical of my experiences in the digital world. Perhaps others can relate:
It was bound to happen. Some folks seem to have a knack for all things digital. I’m not one of them. What seems to be exceedingly easy for some people has become a trial and tribulation of biblical proportion for me. My doctor is not willing to up my medication and I’ve used up the 20 annual psychological counseling sessions per year our medical plan allows (and it’s not even March yet!!). Therefore, in the interest of sanity and self-preservation, I am offering my fellow bloggers and readers the first crack at:
Digital Equipment Winter Garage Sale
Middle aged male tired of constantly losing to the ‘digital aspects’ of everyday life and being considered dumber than a 5th grader. As of today (except for the help required to get this memo posted) I’ll be writing with paper and pencil, listening only to AM/FM radio in the car, doing home musical recordings on a cassette tape, talking with others through a landline phone, checking out books from a library, subscribing to a daily newspaper, submitting the 1040 long form via the US Post Office and using a camera that accepts Kodachrome film.
- Computer preloaded with software – new $1.00 (Half a CD wedged inside.)
- USB interface – new $0.50 (Squished front panel knob.)
- 40” flat screen TV – new $5.00 (Orange juice stain on front.)
- Digital Camera – new $0.10 (Slight thumb depression on side.)
- DSL router & home wireless system – new $0.25 (Inadvertently hit by pen that cracked the front panel. All lights still working.)
- GPS unit – new $0.05 (Regret not buying protection plan against being dropped.)
- Digital Thermometer – used once $0.01 (Best not used orally.)
- XM/Sirius Radio – slightly used. Take over payments. (Display brighter than an LED flashlight. Black sock included for nighttime driving.)
- Guitar effects processor – good condition ($0.75) (May have been inadvertently bounced off wall while unplugging.)
- DVD player & 5.1 surround system – still in original box $3.00 (Orange juice may have leaked into box.)
- Cell phone/MP3 player/camera – new (It’s somewhere along Wilderness Run Road in Eagan, MN. I’m sure the snow bank it hit cushioned the impact.)
No reasonable offers refused