Author: the Josh Benner Blog

Josh is the pastor of Christian Bible Church in Cissna Park, Illinois. He has a Master of Divinity from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. He has an awesome wife named Kari and an awesome dog named Beasley.

Review: Taken 2

The movie Taken is my favorite action movie ever. Today, the sequel premiered. While I’ve been eagerly awaiting this release for the last few months, I also had concerns.

For a blockbuster hit, the original Taken was a relatively low budget film. After its initial success, more money was pumped into the sequel. Part of what I love about the original is its simplicity. It doesn’t have all of the bells or whistles of some action movies. There aren’t ridiculously extreme circumstances. We don’t see cities destroyed. It’s simply about a highly trained man on a mission to save his daughter who has been kidnapped into an all to real underworld of human trafficking. After some intial plot development, the original Taken was all action. There weren’t any corny jokes, they didn’t slow us down with some love story subplot. It was just Liam Neeson killing bad guys.

The NFL, human nature, and theology

Like so many others, I was watching football last night when what clearly appeared to be an interception was ruled a touchdown. The handling of the situation was an utter debacle. Referees who were out of position hesitating to make conflicting calls before declaring that it was a touchdown. it decided the outcome of the game and the officials got it wrong.

Among football fans, on blogs, and through social media, there has been outrage that this could happen.

Why?

Because it wasn’t fair. The right thing didn’t happen.

The eve of infamy; and where I was on 9/11

Photo courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons
Flickr Creative Commons

As I write these words, the stresses of everyday life come to mind. I think of how busy I am between school, work, and other commitments. I’m so often shortsighted and allow myself to get frustrated. It’s getting late and I jot some thoughts down before going to sleep. On this night, my thoughts are on the past and with people I’ve never met. Eleven years ago tonight, thousands of Americans went to bed, unaware that it was the eve of their last day on earth.

For me, that’s surreal. Monday was an ordinary start to the work week. In the evening, people played with their kids, and watched Monday Night Football, and kissed their spouses goodnight. They prepared to go on flights for work, or vacation, or just to make it home. They thought about what bill needed to be paid and the home repair which needed to be completed. They went to sleep like it was any other night and woke up to a beautiful Tuesday morning.

Art Modell dies: still unsure about why exactly he moved the Browns…

I don’t have a favorite NFL team. I haven’t since I was ten years old. In 1995, I was still in the early stages of forming my love of football. Growing up in Columbus, I loved the Buckeyes while the Cleveland Browns had become my favorite NFL team. It was in that same year where Cleveland Browns owner Art Modell announced that he was moving the team to Baltimore.

Since that time, I’ve never rooted for an NFL team. Pittsburgh was still to be hated and Cincinnati was still to be pitied. When the Browns returned in 1999, I struggled with apathy. I wanted to be a fan of the team. I watched games, but I never really cared. Eventually I stopped trying to pretend to be a fan. For me, the magic was gone.