Posts by Jeff Geerling about life, marriage, religion, philosophy and technology. Formerly titled 'Matthew 12:37 - Blog by a God-fearing Man'.

It's going to be a good Saturday

Tools for wrecking - reciprocating saw, hammer, prybar, bolt cutter, screwdriver

Dear old scrap wood furniture that came with the house: say hello to my little friends.

3 million pageviews

Wow. Just glanced at stats for 2008-now on, and it looks like I've passed 3,000,000 page views, with more than 1.6 million unique visitors (I didn't keep stats from 2004-2008, so I don't have data for that time).

Thanks for all your visits, and for helping me improve this site through your feedback! I've received over 1,500 comments and 1,000 emails over the course of 800 blog posts, 60 articles, 31 reviews, and 1,100 photos posted to this site. I've written over 40,000 words in the posts on this site (not yet enough for a novel), and I've written similar amounts for sites like Open Source Catholic and Midwestern Mac.

One of my greatest dilemmas is whether to consolidate sites like those into this site, or to try to keep Life is a Prayer more about personal things, marriage, family life, etc. Here's to another 40,000 words figuring it out!

Daddy #protips

I've been thinking about starting a Tumblr account for some of the many Pro Tips™ I'm learning from raising a baby. I'm sure there are about 10,000 more that I will learn in the next month alone.

Like "when your baby boy starts peeing during a diaper change, you can either let the stream hit the nice carpet and cause a stain, or use your hand (which is much easier to clean) as a deflection shield to keep everything in the waterproof changing pad liner." Apparently this also makes your wife laugh.

It's like babies know when the worst time is to spit up, go potty, and scream—and intentionally do those things at that time. I think they're just playing us parents all for fools.

But they're so darn cute, it's impossible to get angry.

What were they thinking?

I noticed this video from the Center for Reproductive Rights on YouTube today, after seeing it posted by a few different people on Facebook and Google+:

What were they thinking?

There are so many things wrong with this video, it's hard to pick just a few to comment on:

  • A black man. Seriously? Do they realize that abortions are performed disproportionately on the black population, and that those who dismiss this statistic's negative interpretation as evangelical fanaticism say it's a good thing because it helps black people in their struggle to overcome poverty and poor health care?
  • A black man. Okay, so the video's already able to be construed as having some sort of racial overtones. As if that's bad enough, a man celebrating a "women's right to abortion" is about the most sexist and anti-feminine thing I can think of. The man is rightly happy (and strangely turned on—can you say creeper?) in the video because of the fact that he can have sex without consequences, with any woman he chooses, consequences-be-darned, because he knows women feel the pressure to use birth control—and when that fails, have abortions.
  • A black man drinking. Is the man drinking because he knows there are higher risks of substance abuse for women who have abortions? Is he drinking as an in your face to the heroic women who choose to carry a baby to term, but sacrificially forego drinking and modify their diets to help their babies remain healthy?

It's like the Center for Reproductive Rights is run by sexist, racist white men! Again: what were they thinking? I'd be surprised if the video is not pulled offline at some point. It's already at 2.5k dislikes (with just 114 likes), and all the top comments are negative.

Great video on Altar Servers

Through Facebook, I discovered this great video on one young man's experience as an altar server:

I definitely agree that the altar server can distract from the liturgy if he is not focused on his duty, and that priests should encourage the use of cassocks and surplices instead of albs. A large reason for my joining the Seminary was my experience as an altar server, assisting some very humble priests who were great representatives of the Church and very close to Jesus—and this was reinforced by how reverent and dedicated they were to the celebration of Holy Mass.

The Meaning of Life

So faith, hope, love remain, these three; but the greatest of these is love. (1 Cor. 13:13)

Yesterday my wife and I experienced the birth of our first child, who was born just one day prior to his due date, and is as beautiful as any child I've ever known. But even more so because he's mine!

Labor is an emotional roller coaster, and I was incredibly privileged to be with Natalie throughout the entire process: from the early stages at home to the final push in the hospital. Especially in the last moments, my ability to love and experience God's love was radically altered.

Seeing mommy's radiant face moments after the birth, hearing the first gargling cries of our new child, and experiencing all the beautiful moments of agony and ecstasy involved in bringing the baby into our world has given me a new perspective on love.

Love, you see, is the only cardinal virtue that will remain in Heaven. There is no need for faith, for those in Heaven have complete faith in God. There is no need for hope, because you have nothing more for which you can hope. Love remains, and is increased so that it consumes the whole of your being.

I experienced a foretaste of that when our little bambino was born.

For anyone who is called to a vocation of marriage, the birth of your first child is when the true meaning of life begins to take hold.* And that is to love. Love deeply, love sacrificially, love with your whole self, body and soul. The married bond between man and woman sets the stage, but the birth of a child, and the subsequent family relationship sets that bond into a firm foundation of true love.

I can't begin to describe the increase in love that has already occurred in the past day and a half. And I can't imagine what's to come.

Love is not always easy, but it's not hard to love someone when he's just so darn cute!

Geerling Baby Foot

*Not to say that those who are married and are without children, for whatever reason, are not living their vocation or experiencing life to its fullest—I sincerely hope that every married couple gets a chance to bring new life into this world, and I pray especially for those who have a difficult time making this so!


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