I rarely write on politics these days, because I am a pastor. While I have strong political opinions, I keep them to myself. I never want my particular take on the best health care system or the size of COVID stimulus checks to cause someone to disregard what I say about Jesus. But, when a large number of Christians put their hope so profoundly in the wrong places that they are willing to lay siege to the capitol to hold on to that misplaced hope, I must say something not to make a political point, but to make a pastoral one.
I do not spend a lot of time reading the buzz about celebrities. I made an exception this week as the social media tempest highlighted (in spite of itself) something important as it raged against Chris Pratt. The controversy is a good reminder about how we should treat others in two different ways we desperately need right now.
While traveling last year, I lost my trusty pair of Beats Solo 2 headphones I had used for years; while I had been given a set of AirPods Pro for Christmas and they quickly became my all time favorite headphone option, some situations work better with over-the-ear headphones (for example, audio mixing and recording work) and I found myself in the market for a new pair to replace my Beats. That led me to the Vankyo C750’s; they may just beat my Beats.
Pastor Tim turns back to 2 Peter to wrap up the series “Growing” by looking at the hope we have as we look towards God’s promises being fulfilled in the future.
The pandemic has been a test tube for a rapidly developing process by which social media platforms – particularly the overwhelmingly dominant Facebook, Twitter and YouTube – plow ahead with the purging of false information. There is good reason for their efforts: they created platforms that make the spread of even the craziest ideas incredibly easy. Those who oppose these fringe ideas celebrate as the platforms shred ideas deemed dangerous, but have we genuinely considered the cost?
Feeling a bit stressed as the week starts? In our weekly Monday night Scriptural encouragement, Pastor Tim turns to 2 Peter for a reflection on God’s acting in history. If God has acted in history in the past, we can have confidence he continues to do so with the things we are presently facing.
After hanging onto my trusty (and non-butterfly keyboard equipped) 15” MacBook Pro for five years, when Apple finally ditched the butterfly keyboard and offered perhaps the most impressive Mac upgrade since 2012’s Retina MacBook Pro, I knew it was time to upgrade. Coming from the long forgotten days of 2015 into the present of 2020 means buying totally into USB-C and that meant I was going to face some growing pains with a new system. A good USB-C hub makes the move much easier.
Stuart A. Thompson and Charlie Warzel write for the New York Times:
If you own a mobile phone, its every move is logged and tracked by dozens of companies. No one is beyond the reach of this constant digital surveillance. Not even the president of the United States.
The interactive graphic at the top of the article is enough to show just how alarmingly accurate tracking data on cell phones can be. If the president can be tracked this easily, it should be a sober reminder to all of us to care more about electronic privacy.
Pixelmator’s team unveiled a rather simple sounding, but stunning, new feature this week: a machine learning-based image resizing tool that allows for images to be made much larger without degrading them nearly as much as traditional techniques do. If you’ve ever had a photo you wanted to crop but the portion you wanted to focus on was simply too small afterwards, this is for you.
A couple of holiday commercials released this week pull all the right levers to make them tear-worthy and, really, almost mini-Christmas specials. If you are looking for a short break from the hustle and bustle this weekend, check out these two instant classics from Comcast and Apple.