05 June 2016

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02 November 2015


So I had an interesting experience this morning, I thought I’d share it and some thoughts from it. This morning I got a phone call from a lady in my church.  She was apologizing for something that I didn’t really mind at all. Yesterday morning a in the hallway she looked at me with a big smile and said “Hey Big D!” I smiled and said hi and went on. After that point something bothered her… she felt she had offended me.

What bothered her? She didn’t call me Pastor. I assured her that it was no big deal and that I appreciated her heart in the matter. I hate that something so silly had bothered her so much but I understood it.

For me it really wasn’t a big deal. I’ve never really thought much about titles. Truth be told, it is still strange for me to hear people refer to me as Pastor Dallas. This is in part due to my training with my mentor. The idea of titles was just never a big thing. If you had a relationship with someone and they allowed you into their lives that’s all that mattered.  If there’s a job that needs to be done and you were able to do it, then you took care of it, no matter what your title was or is. That’s how I was taught.

That said I do understand that titles are important. They have a place and reason in our society. I know for starters they signify authority. If I walk up to three guys looking for help with a broken leg and one says “Hi, I’m Professor John,” another says “Hi, I’m Officer Jack,” and the third says, “Hi, I’m Dr. Jeremy,” I’m going to end up asking the doctor for help.  Why? I’m going to talk to him because his title tells me he is an authority in medical matters.

There have been many times where I’ve walked into a situation and I’ve had to be “Pastor Dallas.” People needed me to be more than just the laid back geeky guy that I am. They needed to be a minister of the Gospel. They needed me to be someone to bring the presence of God and show them the heart of the Father.

Let’s not forget that we should respect people’s authority. No matter what the position or our opinions about that position. You may not like a pastor, teacher, doctor, mayor, or president; but the fact of the matter is the title they have carries authority. So our honoring of their title is honoring of the authority they carry. Yes even if carry it poorly.

I had talked about this on my Periscope earlier today. One person brought up an interesting point. While I personally don’t care about titles; there are those who purposefully don’t use a person’s title out of blatant disrespect.  In other words, if they don’t like that person for whatever reason, instead of referring to that person as Doctor, Pastor, Professor, President; they simply call them by their name or sometimes… some kind of inappropriate, and colorful, name.  Don’t’ get me wrong, I understand it’s hard to be honoring to people we don’t care for, but how can we create a culture of honor if we don’t do it ourselves?

Another interesting thought is that some people get way too wrapped up in their title. They almost let it go to their head and hold it over others. They are so wrapped up in their title that they lose their actual identity. We are all fellow members of the human race; as such we should respect each other. Yes your title brings authority, but it doesn’t mean you should look down on people. Your title is a gift and if you don’t respect that title then how can you expect others?

I guess in the end our use of titles and our respect of them boils down to the heart behind the situation. If your use or no use of a title is done out of a good heart, then fantastic! Honor comes from that heart. At the same time dishonor comes from a broken heart. If we do not honor the titles people carry then we do harm that person, their title, and our society.

So what are your thoughts about titles? Do you carry title? Does it bother you when people don’t refer to you by that title? Do you have a hard time using people’s titles? Comment and let me know!

10 November 2014

Is Monster Energy Evil?

So recently there has been a pop up of videos and posts on Facebook where people are claiming that the claw marks on the Monster energy drink cans stand for 666. These posts are generally followed up with a fear statement calling for an end the company and triumphant cry of defiance towards the devil’s trickery. But are these claims accurate?

Dealing with the specific claw marks looking like vav…. I really don’t think it looks exactly like it. If anything I think nun looks closer (there are two versions of nun… not sure what the difference is in their meaning). Plus traditional numerology is not about replacement but addition so 666 would be 18. Then getting into even more semantics, the Greek used in Revelation is hexakósioi hexēkonta héx which is Six hundred and sixty six. Which in Hebrew would be (if… and big if here… I’m understanding this right) Tav Resh Samech Vav which looks very much not like the monster logo.

So where did the logo come from if it’s not some even satanic message designed to pollute and subvert society…. Sorry I’m being way to sarcastic here.  Monster energy drinks were created by Hansen Beverage Co back in 2000. They saw the success of Red bull and wanted to get into the energy drink game. They had two problems; their name was strongly associated with health products that young people (main consumers of energy drinks) would want nothing to do with. The second problem being that they needed a gimmick to corner the market.

The idea was to sell their product in cans twice the size of Red Bull’s 8oz cans, but for the same cost.  Now that stage 1 was completed how do they overcome their marketing issues? To solve this problem they contacted Mclean Design. It was Mclean Designs that came up with the monster concept.

They actually started out with several ideas such as “Hammerhead”, ‘Fatboy,” and “wild Hare.” After some market research they narrowed it down to “Fatboy,” ( because the cans were bigger) “Deuce” (because it was twice the amount of substance), and then “Monster.” They chose monster because Monster represented the fact that it was a bigger can (A  Monster Can), it gave “maniacal energy”, and monster had a sense of being different/ bit of a renegade which was their target audience.

In the beginning they had several different types of cans. One was black with a lizard looking creature on it. Another was black with same creature just placed differently. They also had a couple of cans with a silhouetted monster that kind of looks like Batman. Then finally the icon green slashes that make a stylized M.

In the end the design firm and Hansen went with the M because it’s simplicity and bold look. Plus it went over best with focus groups. So nothing demonic with their logo… just want people liked.

Recently a video has been circulating with a woman attempting to explain the conspiracy. In a very haughty way (you can tell she’s had people explain to she is mistaken and she resents the claim) explaining some other things. In her explanation of the M she points out that the claw marks re no connected and that’s why she believes it to be Hebrew.  However if we look at real claw marks in the wild they are not connected. Again this is where a design artist is trying to stylize an M to make it look like a claw mark.

The lady continues to claim that the O with a strike through is a cross. It really isn’t… it looks more like the greek phi.  Which is sometimes used as a symbol of manhood, bringing more suggestion that this will drink is tough and not meant for the faint of heart. She attempts to make a connection to the phrase “release the beast.” However, if she’s a minister she’s forgotten the first rule of exegesis….  When studying something you must remember the culture.

Things in different cultures mean different things to others. Great example that came from my Bible classes I took at SAGU. We have the  verse that says “behold I stand at the door and knock.” This is a great verse that people use often to encourage and motivate others to allow Jesus to take part in their life.

Well  did you know that there is a tribe that according to cultural reasons, that is not encouraging? When they hear that Jesus is a the door and knocking they think that means He is a thief or worse! Why? Because in their culture you don’t knock on someone’s door. You stand at the edge of the property and clap and shout to them to get their attention. The only people who knock in their society are thieves. Thieves will come up and knock to see if anyone is stirring in the house. If not then they will sneak in unnoticed.

So missionaries who visit this tribe will say ‘behold I stand at your gate and clap” so that the people will understand. They took time to understand language of the culture. We have to remember that Monster Energy was targeting a specific culture. Young people who were into Xgames, (skaters, bmx, snowboarding, etc.) A common phrasing, for that generation and specifically that group of people, when someone was amazing at something, was “wow he’s a beast!” Had nothing to do with the enemy but rather description of the energy and ability of the person.  So her drawing on that reference was way off base too.

At the end of the video she very arrogantly suggests that you can’t deny that the O is a cross… but we can… and she claims that when you turn the drink upside down that you are making it into an upside down cross. She then says “bottoms up.. ::turns can upside down like she’s drinking:: and the devil laughs.” Seriously she’s really stretching on that one. That would mean that anyone who used a sword back in the day is doing the devil’s work. Does this make some putters that people use to golf with demonic?  Should we no longer drink SpriTe when we have a stomach ache?

This whole craze about monster I feel really was started from a place of pure intentions. More than like started with someone who heard the stories about kids who had KNOWN HEART CONDITIONS drinking 4 of these things in an hour and then sadly dying. Then as they started to look more at monster saw things that were not there. As a minister, I want to encourage everyone to be careful about jumping on the bandwagon when it comes to certain things. A few reasons

  1. You are giving the enemy, Satan, more credit than he is due. We attribute so many things to him that have nothing to do with him. People who jump at every corner claiming there’s a demon are giving him more glory and more praise then our Lord. The more we jump at things the more fear we breathe into the world and that just gives the enemy more ground.
  2. It’s like the boy who cried wolf story. They more shout Satan the less likely the world will respond when it really is Satan.
  3. The world already has a bad taste in our mouth for well meaning misguided Christians on a witch hunt.  Salem Witch Trials are a black stain in the history of the church. One that was pushed and motivated by fear.  

Is Monster Energy secular? Is it demonic no. I can think of far worse companies that you shouldn't be shopping with but you probably won’t because of one reason or another.

So please friends. Stop crying wolf. From everything I've researched… it’s just a drink. Honestly. The only reasons you shouldn't drink it is if you don’t like the taste, you realize you probably shouldn't be drinking carbonated drinks, you are sensitive to caffeine, or you have a heart condition. It won’t kill you unless you are reckless and drink 5 in an hour and you have a heart condition. It won’t send you to hell unless  a can falls on your head and cracks your skull and you so happen to not be a follower of Jesus the Christ.

Love you all, hope this helps to clear some things up. Blessings!

06 October 2014

Lone Star State Mixtape

Mix that I did in honor of all my friends in Texas. I do not own any of the music. All songs are owned by the artist as far as i know. As always I welcome constructive criticism to help me become a better DJ.

Check out the guys on this mixtape by following these links

This also has shoutouts to Southwestner Assemblies of God Univeristy, Christ for the Nations Institute, DJ Vow (www.djvow.com), and Eli Mendoza

07 May 2014

Lunch Time Mix Episode 1

So i challenged myself last minute today. the challenge? Go home, eat lunch, throw together a quick mix, and be back at work in time. So bit rough but it was fun trying to do it :)
Ammunition by Curvine
For Us by God's Servant
Shout by D-Boy
Te Amo by Israel and New Breed