September 8, 2014's Progress

A couple items about the following video:

1) The song in question, while secular in origin, has been "converted" to a Christian song here in Brazil. Hence my playing it in Church.

2) The following performance was unrehearsed. I was playing around with the melody before the service and the lady who works the sound mentioned that she had the taped accompaniment for that song. One thing led to another and we ended up doing it as a special number.

3) At the end I got kind of lost. I was trying to do a little improvisation, and...well...I should have just stuck to what I knew.

Having said all that, enjoy.

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September 3, 2014

Love is an Open Door: Missions Trip Version

Most missions teams come home with a video and/or Power Point presentation. If your name is Daniel Comings, however, and you have Joseph Comings handy to edit your videos, take things to a whole new level.

The following was filmed by Daniel and members of his youth group while on a trip to South Africa and Madagascar.

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September 1, 2014

Missions in Bom Gosto

Last weekend members of the Ebenezer congregation made their monthly trek to the rural community of Bom Gosto. As always, our purpose there is to evangelize the community and edify the believers that are still there.

On the road again!

Selling used clothes at deep discounts brings the people out of their homes to meet us, helps the community, and defrays the cost of the trip.

Equipment must be muscled into place.

There+s usually time for a dip in the river.

Warming up before the service.

Solemnly waiting for the service to begin.

"Come into the light!"

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August 29, 2014

Feeling Empowered

A few days ago someone posted on Facebook a story about a popular female entertainer and her pornographic performance on stage at a recent awards ceremony. I will not link the article here, suffice it to say that the author spoke in glowing terms of the artists "empowering" performance. This is not the only time I have heard that word used to describe actions that are anything but. I posted the following story in response to the article. It is not normal fare for this blog, nevertheless I thought I would share it here as well.

A group of dirty old men sat around a table in a smoke-filled room. A smudged, tiffany lamp with one bulb missing cast a dubious light over the proceedings. As per usual, the topic of the inauspicious conclave was women and the best ways take advantage of them. Raucous laughter filled the air as, one after another, each septuagenarian regaled his colleagues with tales of the conquests of his glory days. No names were remembered, just bra size, hair color, and relative skill “in the sack”. Completely absent was any recognition that the females in question served any purpose other than the satisfaction of their prurient desires.

“Ah, those were the days,” sighed one geezer, setting down his scotch and taking a swig on the smoking remains of the Cuban in his hand.

“You got that right,” said another, lifting his glass. “To the girls who believed our lines!”

“Hear! Hear!” the seedy group joined in hearty acclamation.

“But what about the ones who didn’t believe our lines?”

All eyes turned to the man sitting in the corner. He had been nursing the same glass of whisky all night, and now he stood and walked over to the table.

“Granted,” he said, putting his as yet unused cigar to his lips and fishing around in his vest for a match, “We had some great lines. But, when you get right down to it, the only girls who fell for them were desperate, or drunk, or charged for their services. No girl with her act together would have ever spent five minutes with us…much less a whole night.”

Silence reigned as each man reflected on “the ones that got away”…and it was true. Their sad excuse for masculinity only appeared attractive to girls whose judgement was severely impaired.

Finally the first man raised his glass, breaking the silence. “Thank God for drunk women!” A chorus of “Hear! Hear!” broke out once again.

“But you have to admit...” it was the newcomer again. “…you have to admit that the girls who turned us down—and there were a lot of them—they were some of the most beautiful girls out there.”

More silence as the men looked into their glasses. “But what if…” and again all attention was on the standing speaker. “What if there was some line we could use to get those girls—the really beautiful ones, the ones with everything going for them—to do whatever we want. Imagine for a moment each one of those girls, the ones that turned us down, prancing around half naked, shaking and shimmying, putting on a killer show just for us.”

Of course it took no effort for the gin-soaked men to imagine it. Wicked lights came to their eyes, evil smiles turned at their lips. It was clear that these imaginations were frequent visitors to their minds.

The speaker took a long drag from his cigar, then blew out the smoke in a steady stream. “What we need,” he mused, “is the line to end all lines. A line that will make even the most “with it” girl think that making us happy is somehow good for her.”

“Any suggestions?” The men were paying attention now. The subject intrigued them to no end, for obvious reasons.

The man mashed his cigar into a tray. “I’ve been giving it some thought. Try this on for size: ‘Honey, if you do what I ask, it will be empowering for you.’”

There was a pause as the men at the table looked at each other. Then as one they collapsed into gales of uncontrollable laughter.

“Empowering! Listen to this guy!” gasped one, choking on his beverage.

“And here I though you were being serious.” rasped another. “What a joker!"

“Get real, man!” wheezed another, finally regaining his composure. “What intelligent girl is going to believe for a moment that the things we want her to do are in any way empowering?"

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August 18, 2014

Musical Interlude: He is yours truly

Earlier this year I took up the saxophone. It's been lots of fun...and not a little therapeutic. Last night I played my first-ever special number at one of our local congregations.

Nothing spectacular, but Kenny G and Boots Randolph had to start somewhere...

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