Thursday Quote Day: Captain America

For this week’s Thursday Quote Day, it’s fitting that it’s a quote from a Marvel movie given the release of Guardians of the Galaxy this weekend.  Here’s a quote from Captain America.

“There’s only one God, ma’am, and I’m pretty sure he doesn’t dress like that.” (Captain America The Avengers)

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The 25th Anniversary Edition: Comic Books

It’s time once again for the Anniversary Edition.  This is a series where we highlight the 25th anniversary of some of our favorite things.  These include movies, TV shows, video games, comics and music that came out during the year of 1989, the last year of the decade of the 80s.  A lot of big things debuted or made a huge impact that year and so we will highlight some of those in this series.

We have previously looked at the year in music, video games, movies, and TV shows in 1989.  For the final article in this series, we now turn to the year in comics in 1989.  Compared to other years, 1989 wasn’t the biggest year in comics.  However, there were some important characters and issues that came out that year.

Several comic book issues that were first published in 1989 that were influential centered around Batman.  The first of these was a story published under the DC Secret Origins comic.  This was a series that featured the origins of their superheroes.  Sometimes they published trade paperback versions of the comic that featured original stories.  One such story was “The Man Who Falls”.  This was a retelling of the origin story of Bruce Wayne as Batman.  It was significant as it would later be the inspiration for the film Batman Begins.  Another huge Batman story that debuted in 1989 was the one shot comic Gotham by Gaslight.  This comic would eventually be the first in a series of comics known as Elseworlds.  This series focused on DC characters in different eras or timeframes.  This comic had the Dark Knight in the late 1800s and the main villain is Jack the Ripper.

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On the Marvel front, there were several crossover events.  They included Inferno, which had initially begun its run in October of previous year.  It mainly dealt with the X-Men and featured Madelyne Prior, who was best known as Scott Summers’ (aka Cyclops) first wife.  Another crossover event was “Acts of Vengeance”.  This crossover event centered more around the Avengers and the Fantastic Four but featured many other Marvel characters including the X-Men and Spider-Man.

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There were several comic book characters that made their debut in 1989.  Two characters are prominent in the comic world.  One of these characters is Tim Drake.  First appearing in Batman #436 in April, Drake would become the third Robin character (after Dick Grayson and Jason Todd).  The other is Jubilation Lee aka Jubilee.  She is a mutant who debuted in Uncanny X-Men #244 in May.  She gained prominence because she was one of the featured characters on the 1990s X-Men animated TV show.

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There are many other comics and characters that were featured in 1989.  Is there an issue or character not listed that you enjoy?  Leave a comment and share them here.  Thanks for joining us this month during our trip down memory lane.  We’ll be back next year around this time to look at the 25th anniversary of things that happened during 1990.  Until then, break out the comic books and enjoy some classic reading.

Sunday Devotional: John 16:33

“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace.  In the world you will have tribulation.  But take heart; I have overcome the world.”  John 16:33

These words spoken by Jesus were to his disciples shortly before he was to be arrested and crucified.  They are words that are spoken to us as well.  It is so important to remember that in Christ, we have peace.  When we turn to Him and follow Him, we have peace even in the midst of trials and troubles.   We get that assurance because we know He has overcome the world and all the troubles and trials we could ever face.

This week, remember these words.  Remember peace is found through Jesus.  Remember in the midst of tribulation, we follow someone who has overcome all that and can help see us through.

Thursday Quote Day: Johnny Cash & Record Executive from “Walk The Line”

For this week’s “Thursday Quote Day”, here is an exchange between a record executive and Johnny Cash from the movie Walk the Line:

“Your fans are church folk, Johnny.  Christians.  They don’t wanna hear you singing to a bunch of murderers and rapists, tryin’ to cheer ’em up.  [pause] Well, they’re not Christians, then.” (Record Executive and Johnny Cash Walk the Line)

Do You Know Your Enemy?

A few years back there was a song entitled “Know Your Enemy” by the rock band Green Day.  The chorus of the song had the question “Do you know your enemy?”  It’s a pretty good question to ask.  “Do you know your enemy?”

Unfortunately, it seems in this day and age it’s easy to identify enemies and yet not identify the real enemy.  On one end of the spectrum, if someone doesn’t agree with popular opinion with culture, or if someone doesn’t fall in line with “tolerance” or political correctness then that person is the enemy.  On the other end of the spectrum, if someone doesn’t fall in line with views of legalism and all that entails, then that person is the enemy.

Both sides are very contentious and it is very easy to fall into either camp.  However, there is another side.  And it goes back to knowing who the enemy is.  Granted, this tension is nothing new though it may seem as harsh as ever.  Back in the 1st Century, there was this struggle of picking sides and warring against each other.  The apostle Paul wrote to the Ephesian church about some of this.  In Ephesians 6:12, Paul said “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.”  The enemy is not the person who disagrees with you.  It is not the sinful person (because remember, you and I have a sinful nature too).  The enemy is Satan, the devil and those that follow Him.

It’s easy to look at the person across from you and make them to be the enemy, especially if they say hateful things or do hateful things.  But they are not the enemy, the real enemy, Satan, is the one who tries to make others out to be the enemy.  For followers of Jesus, we’re called to show grace and mercy to those around us.  This is regardless of whether they show grace and mercy and return.  And if anything has shown us, is that there are times when grace and mercy is met with harshness.  But that doesn’t mean we quit loving and being merciful and graceful.  Jesus never quit showing that to us and if we’re to be followers of Him, we need to persevere in doing the same.

So, do you know your enemy?

The 25th Anniversary Edition: TV Shows

It’s time again for the Anniversary Edition.  This is a series where we highlight the 25th anniversary of some of our favorite things.  These include movies, TV shows, video games, comics and music that came out during the year of 1989, the last year of the decade of the 80s.  A lot of big things debuted or made a huge impact that year and so we will highlight some of those in this series.

We have previously looked at the year in music, video games and movies in 1989.  We now turn to the TV shows of 1989.  There were some pretty big TV shows that debuted in 1989.  This was still the era of Saturday morning cartoons as well as weekday afternoon cartoons.  Along with that, there were some pretty significant prime time TV shows that debuted that are still adored to this day.

One of the first TV shows to debut in 1989 was The Arsenio Hall Show.  Debuting on January 3rd, this syndicated late night talk show came during the time when there was little competition.  Unlike today where there are many options, there was really only The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson & Late Night with David Letterman which followed The Tonight Show.  Arsenio Hall helped bring some competition and diversity to the late night talk show scene.  The show lasted 5 seasons but had some memorable moments during its time.  Last year it was revived and Hall was back again a late night talk show host, albeit with more competition. However, the updated show was not renewed.

In the realm of cartoons, there were some pretty big ones that debuted in 1989. These included Chip n’ Dale Rescue Rangers (March 4th) which initially debuted on The Disney Channel and would go on to be a part of the syndicated cartoon block “Disney Afternoon”. Another big cartoon that debuted in 1989 was The Super Mario Bros Super Show! (September 4th). The syndicated show featured both cartoons & live action skits which starred Captain Lou Albano as Mario & Danny Wells as Luigi. On Fridays, The Super Mario Bros Super Show! would feature The Legend of Zelda cartoons. Another huge video game cartoon to debut in 1989 was Captain N: The Game Master (September 9th) on NBC. That cartoon featured characters from Mega Man, Castlevania, Kid Icarus, and Metroid among others.

For the tween/teenage group from that era, there was one big show that debuted in 1989. That show? Saved by the Bell (August 20th). NBC debuted the show that was previously retooled from the Disney Channel show Good Morning Miss Bliss. Saved by the Bell was the forerunner for the TNBC shows that would feature blocks of shows featuring high school age students. Due to its initial popularity, it found a home on syndication and continues on to this day.

There were some “reality” shows that made their debut in 1989.  One of the big ones is still going to this day.  That show is Cops (March 11th).  Following cops in different cities on their patrols, it became one of the most successful shows on FOX & was its longest running series before moving to Spike TV last year.  Another reality show that debuted in 1989 was Rescue 911 (April 18th).  It was hosted by William Shatner and featured recreated events surrounding 911 calls.  On the funnier side, the hit TV show America’s Funniest Home Videos also made its debut in 1989 as a special (November 26th) before becoming a regular series the following year.  Bob Saget hosted the show which continues on to today now being hosted by Tom Bergeron.

In the realm of comedies, there were several big ones that debuted in 1989.  These include Coach (February 28th) featuring Craig T. Nelson and Major Dad (September 17th) featuring Gerald McRaney.  The three biggest comedies to debut in 1989 were Seinfeld (July 5th), Family Matters (September 22nd) and The Simpsons (December 17th).  Seinfeld featuring comedian Jerry Seinfeld became a mainstay on Thursday nights on NBC for the 90s.  Family Matters was a spinoff of Perfect Strangers and became popular in its own right due in large part to the character Steve Urkel.  The Simpsons are still going to this day and is an anchor for FOX on Sunday nights.

Rounding out some other popular TV shows that debuted in 1989 included Quantum Leap (March 26th), Tales from the Crypt (June 10th), Life Goes On (September 12th), American Gladiators (September 16th) and Baywatch (September 22nd).

Which of these TV shows listed was your favorite?  Is there a TV show not listed that premiered in 1989 that you enjoy?  Leave a comment and share them here.  Next time, we will look at the year in comics in 1989.  Until then, crank up the old VCR and enjoy some classic TV shows.

Sunday Devotional: Philippians 4:10-14

“I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at length you have revived your concern for me. You were indeed concerned for me, but you had no opportunity.  Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content.  I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound.  In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need.  I can do all things through him who strengthens me.  Yet it was kind of you to share my trouble.”

Everyone knows Philippians 4:13.  It’s one of the most well known and quoted verses in all of the Bible, and rightly so.  But it’s important to remember the other verses that are around it.  Paul was under house arrest in Rome.  He was writing to the church in Philippi.  The church had sent a gift to Paul to encourage him while in house arrest.  Paul wrote in response to that among other things.

Paul let the church know that he was relying on God through all things.  And Paul had went through a lot both good and bad.  But through it all God was with him.  That’s important to remember in our lives.  When things are high or when things are low, God is there.  When things are plenty or when things are few, God is there.  It is through God we receive strength to persevere.  It is through God we are blessed with life.  It is through God we are able to truly be the people God calls us to be.

This week, remember not only who provides the strength but that He is faithful through all times.