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I am taking some time to do this week’s DHD while I’m covering the MedAdvance Conference at Quail Springs Baptist Church in Oklahoma City. I’ll give a report in one of my talking points.

1. Moon landing communion

Tomorrow, July 20, will be the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission landing on the moon. I was all of nine months when this occurred, but it is a fascinating occurrence of man walking on the moon.

Joe Carter offers an excellent explainer about a great observance by Buzz Aldrin who had communion (Lord’s Supper) while on the moon.

A couple of takeaways from Carter’s article:

  • Aldrin was quoted in 1970: “One of the principal symbols is that God reveals himself in the common elements of everyday life.”
  • The communion observance was kept low key in order not to draw controversy, such as the lawsuit in response to the reading of the Book of Genesis during the Apollo 8 mission.
  • The church that supported Aldrin commemorates the moon communion service every year.

2. Mo. SBC-affiliated university challenged

The Statement of Faith of Southwest Baptist University in Bolivar, Mo. was reported by Baptist Press to be under investigation by a peer assessment committee.

The reports seem positive, though SBU doctrinal position “appeared to be ambiguous.”

This caught my eye due to the fact many institutions of higher education that have Christian affiliations have appeared to veer away from foundations of the faith, including Scriptural instruction.

I pray SBU responds properly and will stand strong in the faith.

3. Planned Parenthood leadership change

Something that flew under the radar this week is a rather quick change in leadership with Planned Parenthood.

Baptist Press reported Leana Wen has been removed as president of the world’s largest abortion provider. You should check out this BP article because it shares information that may not be found in other news sources.

BP reported that Wen was removed from her position “10 days after she wrote for The Washington Post about her miscarriage in June. She did not indicate any change of heart on abortion when she said the experience has made her ‘commitment to women’s health even stronger.’”

I also appreciate Abby Johnson’s comment of compassion for Wen. A former Planned Parenthood clinic director, Johnson tweeted for “Pro-lifers” to “to reach out to (Wen) in love. Let us also remember that she is a woman grieving the loss of a miscarried child. Let us treat her with care, not callousness.”

It is a shame Al Mohler is not giving Briefing reports in July. I would be curious to know if he would have offered a take on this PP leadership change.

4. Netflix cuts suicide scene from ’13 Reasons Why’

Another BP story reported this week that Netflix cut a graphic suicide scene from its streaming of the series 13 Reasons Why.

Many organizations applauded the move by Netflix including Parents Television Council (PTC) and American Council for Suicide Prevention (ACSP).

“Netflix has finally acknowledged the harmful impact that explicit content, such as the graphic suicide scene in 13 Reasons Why is capable of inflicting on children,” PTC said. “While we applaud Netflix for making this responsible decision, we call on the company to redouble its efforts to protect children from harmful content.”

“If the vulnerable individual sees a fictional character struggling and then dying by suicide,” AFSP said, “the vulnerable viewer can become more at risk of imitating this suicidal behavior.”

I know many who have spoken against this popular show. I pray this could only be the beginning of the entertainment industry being held responsible for its productions and offering better, constructive, life-encouraging content.

5. Thunder thoughts

People are wondering what are my thoughts about the recent, drastic changes that have happened with the Oklahoma City Thunder.

When the Paul George trade happened I was floored, just like everybody else.

Since then, I’ve just been in “wait-and-see” mode. I’ve had some various ideas on how the Thunder would continue through this offseason, but I’m not going to hold my breath. Obviously, though, it is apparent they are hitting the reset and basically starting over.

Expectations are low, and that’s OK. I’m never one to go major “gloom and doom” when it comes to the Thunder.  It means we have to look at the Thunder a little differently this season.

The good news is, my second favorite Thunder person is still in charge. Sam Presti fascinates me. His job is hard, and it appears to have gotten harder, especially with many fans spewing negative venom his way. However, I am confident that Sam is the man!

My first favorite Thunder person is no longer with the Thunder. I will miss my fist bump buddy, Russell Westbrook. It will be hard to see him playing for the Rockets, but I don’t have any ill feelings for him. Hopefully, when the Rockets come to town, he will make one more visit down the scorer’s table.

6. MedAdvance

Real quick, let me tell you about this conference I am currently attending. MedAdvance is an International Missions Board annual event, and it is making its first appearance in Oklahoma.

Many medical missionaries from around the world are here to share their stories and to network with others in the medical profession.

I’ll be doing a story for the Baptist Messenger about MedAdvance, but the stories I hear and the camaraderie and fellowship I have witnessed are encouraging.

Also, it has been reported this is the largest attendance for MedAdvance. God is doing great work through doctors, nurses and other medical professionals!