DHD: Durant, Qureshi’s death, Cremation, Boren, Cursebreakers, Karen’s improving
Strange weather here in late September, no matter if Maggie is awake or not. The Oklahoma State Fair is going on, so where’s the rain?
I’m covering a variety of timely topics this week. One in particular is as strange as the weather.
Let’s get to it!
- Durant’s deranged dialog delivers disturbing deduction
Kevin Durant left the Oklahoma City Thunder before last season, joined the Golden State Warriors and claimed the 2017 NBA championship. He did what everybody in the universe expected he would do, contributing to making the Warriors a dominating force in the basketball world, and he collected the championship series MVP title, which he deserved.
Durant experienced great success with the Thunder before he departed. It was hard for fans to take his decisions to leave, but I think I speak for the majority of the Thunder fan base when I say we’ve moved on and couldn’t be more excited about the upcoming season, which begins in less than a month.
This week, Durant made news because of a bizarre response on Twitter. He was exposed for having fake social media accounts which he uses to interact with whoever is in the “twittersphere.”
Durant also berated his former team, including Thunder head coach Billy Donovan, in a rather questionable fashion, claiming he couldn’t win a title at OKC, even though the Thunder came close multiple times, especially in his final season with the squad.
Like many, I find Durant’s behavior confusing. The guy just won an NBA title with MVP honors, and yet he seems to bring up bad news on his own initiative. He wasn’t provoked to give the response he gave. Nobody in Oklahoma is even involved in this foolishness. He responded to a tweet submitted by a 16-year-old kid in N.C., who doesn’t claim to be a Thunder fan.
Two lessons to learn from this weirdness: 1) Being genuine is important, even on social media, and 2) Winning a title doesn’t solve your problems, and sometimes the success breeds more problems, especially if you’re not genuine.
- The passing of a miraculous convert
Last year, I read Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus written by Nabeel Qureshi. As I began to read this book, it made me nervous because of how in-depth the teaching of the Muslim faith and lifestyle was presented. But it was important for Qureshi to present the details of his upbringing in order for readers to understand how miraculous and powerful his conversion to Christianity was.
I compare what Qureshi experienced to similar magnitude of the Apostle Paul’s conversion. He wasn’t an average Muslim believer. As Justin Taylor described, “His parents also trained him in apologetics so that he would not only believe in Islam, but could defend it and refute other religions like Christianity.”
On Saturday, Sept. 16, Nabeel Qureshi died at the age of 34, after battling cancer for more than a year. Praise God for saving his soul, and praise Him for using Nabeel in a powerful way as a Christian writer and apologetics speaker.
Taylor’s article gives a great summation of Qureshi’s life and a declaration of God’s power over false religions.
- Questioning cremation
Joe Carter is an excellent communicator of important issues and current events. He offers direct information in an objective fashion in his FAQ articles. This week, Carter wrote “The FAQ: What Christians Should Know About Cremation.”
Cremation is not one of the more popular topics discussed in Christian circles. It seems as though a majority of Christians have a rather apathetic view on the funerary process.
Carter wrote about cremation because it was recently reported that, for the first time in American history, more Americans (50.2 percent) have chosen cremation instead of burial (48.5) after their death.
I encourage you to read Carter’s article and come to your own conclusions. As usual, he presents the issue in a fair-minded fashion, referencing respected Christian leaders on both sides of the cremation-burial debate.
- Boren announces his retirement
David Boren made known this week he will be stepping down as president of the University of Oklahoma at the end of the 2017-18 school year.
It’s hard to deny the impact he has made in Norman. It was reported he will have the second longest tenure of an OU president. The former U.S. senator and Oklahoma governor took OU from a better-than-average academic condition and elevated its scholastic status to be among one of the best public universities in the country.
He also was instrumental in upgrading OU’s athletic program, if only for his decision to hire Joe Castiglione as athletic director. But the Sooners have made drastic improvements, since Boren became president, and experienced a bounty of national championship titles spread out among the different sports.
One interesting bit of trivia, as Boren was beginning his political career, he was a professor at Oklahoma Baptist University.
- Covering Cursebreakers Conference
I get to spend time at one of my favorite places this weekend. Another trip to Falls Creek begins Friday night, as I will be covering a new event called Cursebreakers Conference, which is a weekend retreat for men.
I wrote a preview for the conference in July. Keith Burkhart, men’s ministry specialist for the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma, gave a high regard for the event.
“Cursebreakers might be the most impactful thing we do for a long time,” Burkhart said. “We want to free men up, give them a reset of a biblical framework to see that they have an opportunity to change generations until the Lord tarries.”
If you’re planning to be there this weekend, let me know.
- Update on Karen
In the introduction of last week’s DHD, I mentioned Karen was having shoulder surgery. I can report that she is recovering at an impressive rate. I had to be her caregiver for a few days, and still have to do some things for her, but I am amazed at how well she is healing in only a week.
On Friday, we visit the surgeon to see when he thinks she can return to work. I’m expecting him to be impressed with my Wonder Woman.
Enjoy the weekend in this unusually weird weather!