Looking back to go forward

January 4, 2010
We have had a week of looking back at the year that was. We have read the countdowns of the top ten news stories of the year, and have been reminded of the highs and lows of human behavior in the first decade of this millennium. Every newspaper and magazine has offered its lists of best (and worst) movies, books, sports teams, and more. I heard last week that the stinker movie of the decade, at least with regard to box office receipts, had to be “The Adventures of Pluto Nash.” I looked it up and was amazed: The production cost was a cool $100 million. The domestic box office receipts totaled a very un-cool $4.4 million. You do the math and calculate the loss on that one. My advice is that maybe the director should run for Congress, since he’s gifted at spending a pile of cash and getting next to nothing in return.
In the spirit of the moment, then, may I offer my own top 10 list for 2009?
10. The Tar Heels won the national championship in men’s basketball, Carolina’s second of the decade. Some of you thought I would put that as number one, didn’t you?
9. “The Blind Side” exceeded most critics’ expectations in drawing millions to the theater to see a real-life “Good Samaritan” story. A pro-family, pro-Christian movie that I look forward to seeing again on DVD. On the other hand, you couldn’t pay me to see a love story about a vampire. Love story?
8. The Creation Museum in Kentucky is a great place to take your family. It opened in 2007, but the Foxes didn’t make it there until 2009.
7. “Climategate” exposed the myth of man-made global warming. Do we need to be good stewards of this planet? Oh, yes. Can man, all by his little bitty self, destroy the planet? Umm, no. That ability rests solely with the Creator. You can read about him in Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” Go ahead and read all the way to the end of the 66th book, and see what his plans are for the third rock from the sun.
6. Capt. Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger III landed his fully loaded Airbus in the Hudson River, and everyone survived. What I liked best about this story was what Sully said after the event, when he described his philosophy of life: “We need to try to do the right thing every time, to perform at our best, because we never know which moment in our lives we’ll be judged on.”
5. “Hard Work: My Life on and Off the Court,” by Roy Williams is one of the most pleasurable books I have read in a while, partly because I was able to relive many of the best Tar Heel moments of the past 30 years.
4. The first 10 minutes of the Pixar movie, “Up,” made me cry, both times I watched it. What a wonderfully unusual thing for Hollywood to feature a healthy marriage, a husband and wife who loved each other to the end.
3. The church is still the chosen vehicle through which God works in the world to bring about his divine plan. I am sold on the church.
2. The Bible is not only the best-selling book of all time, but the best book. It has no equals and never will.
1. Best news of 2009? Jesus Christ is Lord. Without this, none of the rest of what I mentioned would matter.
May God bless you this New Year.

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