Thursday, July 16, 2009

my "a-like" bro

Timo! (tee-moe) my coolest bro, who can't stay serious for more than the length of a family dinner prayer. "T", this post is for you, I'm so glad you're here with us, making jokes, playing pranks, and serving more than the rest of us combined. I remember when you started saying that I was your "a-like" brother because we like the same things and looked the same and said things the same way. So rock on, I love you, and don't get too cool for your older bro...


Tuesday, June 2, 2009

"may I present to you, the class of '09"

that was what he said...and I guess he meant it.  High school is kinda over.  I finished four years of tough education to begin four tougher years..     The ceremony was short and sweet, and I have my mom to thank for that.  She worked long and hard to make it the most perfect graduation ceremony anyone's ever had to endure.       Everyone is asking me how I feel different now that I'm out of high school, and truth be told, I don't.  It's sorta like what I've heard about when someone dies, it doesn't really hit you until later...
But philosophy aside, I'm maxing out this summer, working at Jason's Deli (cream of the fast food crop) and hopefully soon a morning shift across the street at Panera Bread.  I was the recipient of many generous graduation gifts..I didn't phase out enough not to be extremely grateful to all those who contributed.  I have enough to go on the Mexico E-team trip and buy a car, with some money still left over.  
I just bought Kevin DeYoung's book "Just Do Something" on practically making decisions and following God's will.  DeYoung spoke at NEXT '09 which I neglected to post about, but was really totally awesome.  I would encourage anyone and everyone to go download all the messages given there because they were simply amazing.
If anyone has any suggestion on what to do with my summer free time, or whatever time slips through the cracks, I would welcome them...


Wednesday, May 6, 2009


The Murphy family will be moving to Virginia July 1st! Thanks a ton, God!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

It's May, so I decided to write a post. I think it's been about a month since my last post. I am a truly prolific writer, am I not? Anyway, I have some time on my hands and Jars of Clay's surprisingly strong album "The Long Fall Back to Earth" is playing through the speakers, so I might as well ramble for a bit.

* I graduate in less than a month. That's a rather frightening thought. The last four years have been an absolute whirlwind. I'd like to say I learned a lot, but I'm not sure how true a statement that is. I think I can identify a lot with Calvin's answer to the history question, "When did the Pilgrims land at Plymouth?" His response - "1620. As you can see, I have memorized this utterly useless fact long enough to pass a test question. I now intend to forget it forever. You've taught me nothing except how to cynically manipulate the system. Congratulations." Poignant, isn't it? But then I suppose a lot of life involves "cynically manipulating the system". If we can do that well, we're bound to succeed, right? Anyway, I think I did learn one thing, and that is that high school never turns out the way Disney wants you to believe it will.

* I now have a Twitter. I even have ten followers on Twitter. That means I'm hip, connected, and in tune with the cutting edge of society. Does being on the cutting edge of society offer any tangible benefits? But hey, at least I now know what Ashton Kutcher is doing every moment of the day.

* Does swine flu remind anyone else of bird flu and SARS? Maybe we as a nation just like being under constant threat of a global pandemic. The looming prospect of disaster makes us feel alive, doesn't it?

* X-men Origins: Wolverine was terrible. Maybe that had something to do with the fact that I ate a whole bag of popcorn smothered in some sort of half-butter, half nuclear waste beforehand. I felt sick the entire movie.

* Why is it that life can seem so wonderful one moment and so horrifying the next? You see things so beautiful they make your heart ache, and then the spectre of what this world actually is, what we as humans truly are, is enough to overwhelm you with loathing. "What is this evil in the heart of nature?" (Brownie points if you can name the movie I copped that line from)

* "We're the middle children of history, man. We have no great war, no Great Depression. Our great war is a spiritual war, our Great Depression is our lives." Does this quote accurately characterize our generation? Why or why not?

Okay, that's it for today. I just read over what I had written, and most of it could have been compressed into a couple of Twitter posts. Twitter's making everything obsolete.

Monday, April 20, 2009


hey-yo...its been kinda fast lately so I havn't really been on here that much.  

I got back a couple of days ago from a "field trip" to the Naval Amphibious Base Little Creek.  I don't think that the people there who were conducting us through the "field trip" knew that is was a field trip.  There were several officers who were in charge of us for two days, and they worked us like we were in boot camp.  But I can't tell you about that stuff because I had a calc II test that morning so I missed the tough stuff (push-ups, leg-raises, getting yeld at) and came after the officers had already blew most of their steam.  We got to shoot M-16s and 12-gage shotguns, go in the gas chamber, run through Marine obstacle course, and repel down a 90-ft wall.

My favorite moment was, right before we got to repel, the marine who was checking our safety harness to make sure they were on properly (after he had explained it to us several times) came to Brett and took one look at his harness.  It was on backwards.  The marine looked up at Brett and groaned: "Seriously?"


Sunday, March 15, 2009

And Then They Came For Me

On January 8, 2009, unidentified gunmen on motorcycles shot and killed Sri Lankan journalist Lasantha Wickramatunga. Mr. Lasantha was editor and columnist for the Sunday Leader, a controversial newspaper that outspokenly attacked the Sri Lankan government for their human rights abuses during their campaign against the Tamil Liberation Fighters. On January 11, the Sunday Leader published a letter Mr. Lasantha had written and requested to be published after his death. In it the journalist, who for some time had been aware that he was going to be assasinated, explained the reasons behind his highly dangerous campaign for justice and issued a final plea for change. Here's the link to the letter:

I'd encourage everyone to take some time and read this. It's rather lengthy, but it is a touching and moving last testament to a man who refused to be cowed by injustice and sacrificed his life for a cause he believed in.

"There is a calling that is yet above high office, fame, lucre, and security" Mr. Lasantha writes. "It is the call of conscience"

Saturday, March 7, 2009


As a break from this heated debate...check this band Liam and Me. I just found them and love their music but aint so sure about their lyrics. I put one song on the blog but please check out their myspace site for their better songs. Tell me what you think!
Here's Ashley's take:

Okay, here's what I think the problem is here.We are operating from different bases. You are arguing from a view that is filtered through purely religious views. Not everyone believes in a God and therefore, not everyone is going to be motivated by the whole "God will smite us if we allow homosexual marriage" thing.
Okay here's a source for you to check out:
Here are some of the main important points:"The primary argument against gay marriage is that it's seen as an abomination under Christian doctrine. Indeed, there are several passages in the Bible that make this point, the most prominent being Leviticus 18:22 which states:"Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination."It's kind of hard to avoid the clarity of such a statement. Reinforcing this view are passages from Genesis, Romans and Deuteronomy, but can these passages establish a legal precedent in the United States? The answer is no. Homosexuals have a constitutional right to marriage"The author goes on to explain Jefferson, the 1st amendment and the separation of church and state."in justifying the legality of gay marriage, one must first define marriage as a state function and not a religious one. It can be argued that marriage is a state function because it has the power to modify other state functions such as Social Security and tax filing status. Because marriage affects state functions, constitutionally, it too must be a state function for it to legally do so. If not, the government is violating Article Six and is actively discriminating against unmarried citizens. If marriage is a state function, then it's protected under various civil rights laws."The church doesn't have to recognize the legality of it, much less endorse it, but it will exist nevertheless.According to Matthew 22:21 [Jesus] said:"Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's; and to God the things that are God's."Jesus himself advocated keeping religion out of the law."Romans 13:1, says:'Let every person be in subjection to the governing authorities. If the law of the land is that everyone must pay war taxes then that is what we must do. It is the law!'The legality of gay marriage is incontrovertible when these passages and precedents are taken into account. Romans 13:1 goes on to say that those who believe a law is wrong should work within the system to change it. Simply denying homosexuals the right to marry on the basis of religion is illegal. According to Christ, it is also against Christian pathology."So there you go...this is a much more eloquent and better reinforced rendition of what I meant.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Alright. Here it is.

Ok. I'm not trying to show you that homosexual marriage is unconstitutional. For the straight up answer to your question: I think that if you just look to our governing documents, homosexual marriages could fit in just fine.

Now with that said, this is my problem: I dont think that because it may fit into the Constitution that we should allow it. Whether we should allow gay marriages in the United States is not the same as whether outlawing gay marriage is unconstitutional. There is more to the first question than to the second. So I agree that if you just look only to the Constitution, gay marriage fits. But I want to point the other question to you: Should we, as Christian Americans, allow gay marriage to be legal?
These are two opinions of people who emailed me their opinions:  (I kept them anonymous to prevent bias)

"I thought you would find this link helpful.  BTW, homosexuality is very harmful to a society- just look at Sodom and Gomorrah.  And it might be good to go back and read Romans 1:18-32.  God's judgement  is that people are given over to the degredation of their bodies.  It's a scary place to sit back and do nothing to stand for righteousness when others are under such a serious judgement from a loving Lord.  It's harmful to all of us when we are worshipping created things rather than our Creator.  Some people would want to worship freedom or happiness as the ultimate cause but again, that would be a created thing that becomes perverted when it becomes our goal."


"Just an FYI
No where in the constitution does it state "separation of church and state"  this statement was made in a private letter sent from T. Jefferson and has been widely used out of context thanks to our liberal media.

"Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness" is not in the Constitution, but in the Declaration of Independence.

The argument that being in a homosexual relationship is not hurting anyone but the people involved is a farce.  If they  truly understood the homosexual community, their roots and their agenda they would understand that there is much more to this than homosexuals being allowed to join in marriage.  I do not recommend researching this yourself as it is a very dark and disgusting world."

I hope you find this helpful.


In case anyone else missed my point....

All right, I'm beginning to lose my temper a wee bit. Here is the position we have been taking (I've even put it in capitals!) AN ANTI-GAY MARRIAGE AMENDMENT TO THE CONSTITUTION IS, IN ESSENCE, UNCONSTITUTIONAL. Really, dude, you should have seen that before now. I won't elaborate here because I have already done so extensively in my comments to your post. What are you talking about when you say you've heard "confusing" statements? I have been quite clear (if a bit lengthy). And you continue to confuse issues. I am not, as you say, "pro-gay". I simply believe that, UNDER THE CONSTITUION, gays should be allowed equal rights in this nation of ours

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Stop. Listen. Clarify.

Ok. I'm gonna stop shouting my position over and over again. I want to hear your argument in clear, simple terms. Try to be clear on your arguments and your position and where your allegence lies and what is your priority in taking your view. Aaron: feel free; Connor and Ashley or whoever else wants to answer: write it as a comment to this post and I will post it.

So far I have heard many confusing positions from near pro-gay to near my own I'd like to hear clear, concise, and simple, and perhaps honest opinions. thanks.


Sunday, March 1, 2009

Come on now.

I'm sorry. But I must speak to this issue that Aaron brought up of government's involvement in gay marriage. I'm very close to disgusted by these views not only of Aaron's, but of those who have commented on it.

Since when was the government's business not the Christian's business?! Since when was the seperation of church and state something that we as God's ambassadors approve of?! Just because we're talking about politics does not mean we drop our crosses! We may have the job as citizens to obey the government, but in a democracy we also have the job of making our views represented in the government. If you wish to argue that the Christian morals in this case intrude on other's "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness", then I want to ask you to define these, especially pursuit of happiness. When the Thomas Jefferson penned this, do you really think that he was including sensual pleasure (moreover in a sinful form) in this happiness that the government should protect? And if you say that the culture now should redefine it to mean the "happiness" that today has so prevaded our society, then aren't you and I called to be in the world but not of the world? Since when do we give in to the culture and how it defines our lives? I do not presume your spiritual condition, but if you have a desire to see Christ glorified, then I would define Jefferson's diction differently: I believe that yes, the government does have the duty of protecting our pursuit of happiness, but not happiness defined as pleasure. Happiness defined as Joy. And our Bibles can competently show us where that is to be found. and its decidedly not in homosexuality. I believe that no matter how much pleasureful happiness can be found in homosexuality, it is not the joyful happiness which we as Christian should pursue or encourage others to pursue, namely by allowing gay marriage.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

I was going to begin this post with : "Wow! It's been quite a while since I last wrote!" but then I realized that my last three posts began with essentially the same statement. Therefore, I have decided not to mention it directly this time around. However, the format will stay the same. What follows is a series of quick, condensed bullet points that sort of cover some of the thoughts and reflections I've had in the last month or so. Enjoy!

* It's a comfort knowing the 800 billion or so American dollars President Obama is planning to pour into the black hole that is the American economy will soon be used to finance the private jets and swanky yachts of top excecutives while their companies self-destruct. Why I am so cynical about this I can't really say. Last time I checked I was an Obama fan.

* I am currently reading Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. I really enjoy it. Maybe a bit too much. Today I was seized by a sudden desire to drop everything, buy a motorcycle, and spend the rest of my life cruising the wastelands of the American Midwest and pondering the deep philosophical questions of life. Then I remembered that I don't have any money.

* I didn't get a chance to watch the Oscars, but I sort of followed it. I haven't had a chance to catch Slumdog Millionaire, but I saw The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, which I thoroughly enjoyed. I was somewhat surprised that the Academy ignored the superb Gran Torino, which was probably the best film I've seen this year. I generally enjoy the movies that the Oscars honor, but the whole culture of Hollywood makes me sick. Why is our culture so image-obsessed? What is it about celebrities that attracts us so much? What about the people who really make a difference in this world, like teachers and doctors and farmers? Our society is so superficial. American beauty is only skin deep. We ignore the true beauty and wonder of the human soul and focus only on outside appearances.

* I read a quote by the absolutely brilliant author David Foster Wallace in which he examined the underlying idea of suicide. "All this business about people committing suicide when they're ' severly depressed '; we say 'Holy Cow, we must do something to stop them from killing themselves!' That's wrong. Because all these people have, you see, by this time already killed themselves, where it really counts.....When they 'commit suicide', they're just being orderly." Aside from being deeply disturbing, this quote is quite profound. All of life, I believe, is a search for joy. Without God, people gradually destroy themselves from the inside. Without something more, what is there to live for? Where can joy be found? We fill our lives with distractions in order to shut up the demons in our own heads. We can't even face our own thoughts. A clear, honest look at who we really are is enough to drive anyone mad with despair. We can't stand the stark reality of existence. Some of us God rescues, others search their entire lives and die unfulfilled. Still others kill themselves for peace, in a last, desperate attempt to find rest and joy. I am so very grateful God found me. I shudder to think where I would be without Him. For David Foster Wallace, the reality of life was too much. He killed himself in 2008.

* I graduate high school this May. Forget college. I've decided I'm gonna be a rock star!

* Green Day's new album, 21st Century Breakdown, is due out in May!!!!!!! Ok, I know they're not exactly the cleanest band lyrically, but no one can deny that they are uncannilly brilliant in their own screwed-up way. A hamster could learn their guitar riffs, but somehow they come up with great tunes that really strike a chord in the listener's head. Their 2004 release, American Idiot, is an all-time classic. If you ever get a chance, sit down and read the liner notes. The lyrics are severely depressing, but they capture in a unique, clear-eyed way the emptiness of American society.

* I am listening to U2's latest, No Line on the Horizon. It is brilliant. Go out and buy it when it hits stores on Monday. Really. It's a great piece of music.

* Last of all, I have a question. Is there really any constitutional basis for an amendment outlawing gay marriage? I don't agree with homosexuality, but aren't those who practice it entitled to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness just as much as I am? Is it really fair and just to forbid gays to marry? Let me know what you think!

God Bless,


Friday, January 16, 2009


WOW... a lot has happened in the last month...sorry for those of you who REALLY wanted to hear from us (if there are any of you... :-)  We had our 316 Christmas Party (possible best ever) planned by the SGC seniors.

I'm still not sure how we pulled it off...but it was a success (at least that's what we were told?)
danny's awesome corndog vendor costume, we definitely cudnt have done it without the help of the singles...
And in return, most of the seniors helped out at the Singles Christmas, joe, and jon in the aftermath...

After Christmas and the New Year, (which was fun), the SGC basketball program had a date with the Coventant Life Church basketball...the varsity boys and the JV girls both had games in Maryland....

And Im sorry but this pic of josiah is dripping with awesomeness...
Ky-guy and hulme came with us to beef our bench...
Josh, as usual, carried the game...Aaron came up with us to add to the hype...and Phil vowed that no camera would record his mouth the entire trip...
I think this was the part of the game where we were losing right before half-time...then in the third quarter we whooped em 29-6
The girls team, although full of talent, could not hold back the varsity girls team they had to play...

And this....
I dont know if you can see that may be the most cherished score in the history of SGC basketball.  Our team beat Gateway in their own gym.  It was a tough game but we had the greatest fans ever and we managed to win...