Category: TV and Media


Just a few short months ago I shared a blog post concerning Bachelor Brad and Emily’s relationship. While all seemed to go well on the show and at the final rose ceremony, things started to break down after the show. This is somewhat to be expected as the show kind of creates an artificial environment where the participants are somewhat sheltered from real life. It seemed in the final show that although Brad and Emily were struggling with their reentry into real life they were working through these issues in a consistent and responsible fashion.

Something happened just recently however; tabloids first reported that Brad and Emily had finally called it quits and this was followed up by an interview with Emily during last Monday’s episode of The Bachelorette. Emily’s request was that she wanted to tell the story just once and then put it to rest.

There is no doubt that the constant media attention and hounding was detrimental to this relationship. I cannot comprehend what this would be like and so I cannot comment on this aspect of the relationship. What puzzles me however is Emily’s description of what went wrong; it doesn’t really seem like anything went wrong. Emily said that she and Brad talk and text often, she still cares deeply for him, she would defend him should people talk bad about him, and Brad will continue to play a role in her life for a long time to come. It sound like they have become quite good friends…and where I come from that is the foundation of what could potentially make a really great marriage.

The only ray of light that Emily shed on this matter was that she felt life with Brad would be too unstable for her and her daughter. Emily stated that when anticipating a temporary relocation to Texas to be closer to Brad she wanted to have an apartment and other necessities all lined up prior to her departure; it seems as though Brad did not share this same desire to have life preplanned. Emily also mentioned her reluctance to move in with Brad right away…I can only speculate how this very countercultural behavioral impacted their relationship. Finally, Emily confessed her lack of confidence in Brad’s long-term affection for her; she was not confident that Brad would still want to be with her 6 weeks or even 6 months out. Yet they remain good friends; on this point I must confess I am confused.

Once again The Bachelor/ette has provided us with some interesting reflections on the state of love and marriage within our culture. I commend Emily on remaining strong and true to her morals and to the ideal of life she has for her and her daughter. It is better to know now that she and Brad wanted very different things in life than to get in too deep (i.e. married) and then pull the plug.

I honestly get the sense from both Brad and Emily that they entered this relationship with only the best motives and truly wanted this to work. Perhaps the failure of their relationship was a result of cultural expectations mixed with tabloid harassment? I just cannot figure this one out completely and from Emily’s tone I think this will be the last we hear from her… any thoughts?

I was first introduced to the reality television series “Big Brother” the summer before I began my fourth year of undergrad at Dalhousie University. From then on I have watched the various seasons of Big Brother of and on…more on than off. The basic premise of the show (for those who may not have watched) is that a dozen or so people who for the most part have never met before will live in a house together for the whole summer competing in competitions and engaging in a variety of power struggles to escape eviction from the house. The top winner of Big Brother will earn significant cash.

Big Brother is like a large experiment in personality clashes; I think the producers do this on purpose. On the show you will always have your share of aggressive and mouthy people, your token few older folks, a mix of racial backgrounds and some person of a religious background. This year the religious influence in the house was Keith, a youth minister (apparently), although several online biographies and certainly his womanizing behavior in the house suggest that ministry may not be where his heart really lies. I read somewhere that out of the overflow of the heart that mouth speaks. Hmmmmm.

I think my wife summed it up best: if this guy was our kid’s youth minister I think we’d look for a new church or at the very least refrain from allowing him to have any influence in my kid’s lives. Maybe that’s why in the first episode, which showed Keith at his church, he was only preaching to four students anyways; the rest already knew to steer clear.

The only redeeming quality about Keith is that his game play was so awkward and repulsive to the rest of the houseguests (and he claims to be an HR guy?) that he secured his eviction from the house last night. Now we will no longer have to endure his unfortunate behavior. (See, I said it nicely)

Big Brother, you have picked your religious folks well in the past and have included some genuine people; not so much the case this time around! Better luck next time.

Many teenagers do it; many enjoy doing it. Many spend oodles of money on it and it only takes about 20 minutes three times each week. Such little work for such dramatic results that you carry around with you 24/7…so what is the drawback?

This thing that I am talking about is artificial tanning and it has become something that teenagers have become more interested in, especially as the prom season is once again upon us (in fact, Prom 2011 at my local High School is taking place as I write this post). An interesting group of students throughout Canada are using this prom season to send a message about artificial tanning; they want teenagers to abstain. Why is this? Recent studies have shown a dramatic increase in the instance of melanoma (a form of cancer) in young women who tan regularly. The World Health Organization has labeled artificial tanning beds as a type 1 carcinogen; other things in this category include tobacco and arsenic.

Though not necessarily a trendy option (that is, not to tan) it may well be a logical one. The difficulty is that popular media portrays the popular, good looking and healthy individuals as those who sport a tan.

I have to admit that when Mandy and I got married I went tanning…this was recommended because we were heading to the Caribbean for our honeymoon. Even worse, I loved tanning; it was not just about dark skin, I found the whole experience extremely relaxing and quite a nice stress relief after a long day. I guess I have learned to distress with other less harmful activities these days.

It seems so interesting that we in Canada are obsessed with making our skin darker whereas in other cultures people are obsessed with making their skin fairer. When Mandy and I did an STM in Thailand I encountered many individuals for whom dark skin was a sign of inferiority. Those with dark skin were forced to do manual labor where they were continually exposed to the elements. In these cultures it is the noble class with the fair skin.

For these folks light really is the new dark. Will this trend make it in our culture? I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.

(The original article concerning this can be found at http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/prince-edward-island/story/2010/04/09/pei-students-tan-prom-584.html)

So, the world did not end after all…what a bummer. What a bummer for all those folks who donated all kinds of money for the 5000+ billboards distributed all over the world (literally!). What a bummer for all those folks who really believed this (despite what their Scriptures said) and now will be timid to show up in public. What a bummer for all those folks who may have quit their jobs or gone on crazy vacations assuming they would not have to pay their bills. What a bummer for those who pre-paid pet care facilities to come and rescue their pets after the rapture; yes, I really did read a news story about this and I am now sorry that I did not save the link to prove it to you. One guy decided to set up a small online business where for $135 he would collect and take good care of your pet in a post-rapture situation. He said in a news report that his clients (some 250 folks) are going to be disappointed twice today; once when they realize that rapture did not happen and a second time when they realize that he does not do refunds.

In the aftermath of all of this I have to ask myself: what was Harold Camping thinking? I read a post today that suggested that Camping was pulling a huge publicity stunt for his radio network; plain and simple. Perhaps an aging Harold Camping decided that he wanted his life’s pursuits (Family Radio) recognized by the masses just once before he died; I have to admit that I had never heard of Family Radio nor Harold Camping prior to this all of this. Today there are atheists, agnostics, pastors, common folks…everyone really is talking about this thing that did not happen. Could this have been a potential motivation? Or, as Scripture warns us, was Harold Camping simply misguided and a false prophet. I am not sure which outcome I would be happier with.

Hopefully this whole ordeal, now behind us, has caused some folks to consider the reality of “what if”? What if it was true? Where would my life be now? If just one person reconsiders the direction of their life as a result of this I suppose we could say it has not all been a loss.

Get ready for round two of the end of the world…2012 and the end of the Mayan calendar is just a year away!

Have you ever heard that great song “End of the World” done by Great Big Sea? I was amazed at how many students today have never heard of the band Great Big Sea…where has musical taste gone these days! Great Big Sea was a staple band when I was in university just 10 years ago; they even played at my wife’s high school prom and THAT was a BIG deal!

All of this to say that our culture today is really quite interested with how we all got here on earth (i.e. the beginning of the world) and also with how we are going to leave here (i.e. the end of the world). There have been so many predictions about the end of the world over the past 2000 years that if it was possible, I am sure that God would have succumbed to the peer pressure of it all and just ended everything already!

But then, I guess we shouldn’t be surprised about this apocalyptic obsession that we have today; Jesus told us to be waiting and be watching for the end to come. Jesus didn’t tell us to become obsessed however and he most certainly didn’t tell us that a few really smart people would figure it out someday and sound the alarm. If history has taught us anything it is that statistically, 100% of the entire end of the world predictions thus far have been inaccurate. I think that is a pretty solid trend that we can be confident about.

We currently are facing the most recent ‘end of the world’ prediction by Harold Camping of Family Radio; a California based broadcasting organization. Camping uses a number of biblical genealogies to determine the age of the earth and subsequently the ‘end of the world’ which will begin with the rapture of ~3% of the earth’s population on May 21, 2011 and the subsequent destruction of the earth on October 21st, 2011. Camping is no newcomer to this ‘date setting’ group; he also predicted the ‘end of the world’ in 1994…and obviously lived to tell about it.

I think the author of the Peanuts comic strip had the most interesting thing to say about predicting the ‘end of the world’:

“Don’t worry about the world coming to an end today. It’s already tomorrow in Australia.” Charles Schultz, creator of the Peanuts comic strip.

There is some truth to what Camping is saying (i.e. that there will be great changes to us and to the world around us some day); however, there is a lot of myth associated with what he is teaching too (i.e. that we can know the time and the date). Here are a few facts to help set the record straight.

1. This “end of the world” will take place at some point.
Scripture is clear that Jesus Christ will come back at some point in the world; when he does come back a number of great things will take place. Those who are faithful and accept Christ in this life will have an inheritance of honor and rule with him in the life that comes next (Col 1:10-12). Those who are not faithful and reject Christ will be confronted with the reality that they were misguided and they will answer to God for this (Rev 20:12-13). Those who have previously died will be returned to life to either rule with Christ or answer to God depending on how they lived their life (1 Thess 4:13-14). Finally, there will be a new earth and a new heaven that will be void of all sickness, death and disease. It will be like restoration of the Garden of Eden from the book of Genesis; our bodies will also be restored to that Garden of Eden state (Rev 22:1-3, 21:1).

2. No one knows when this will take place.
For as many of the Scriptures that we have that describe what will take place at “the end of the world” there are those that tell us that we will not know the time…and that no one will. In fact, the bible teaches that the end will come like a ‘thief in the night’. Never have I known a thief to book an appointment ahead of time!

3. What should we do? We must be ready.
Each of us must ensure that we are living in such a spiritual state that we are prepared to meet Jesus when he returns. This is a serious and somewhat fearful thought, yet it must be considered. Remember that you do not have to be perfect; what is required is humble submission to Jesus Christ within which there is no condemnation (Romans 7:1).

Also, we should continue preaching the words of God to all those around us. This is what Jesus asked us to do when he left us.

So, don’t worry about these doomsday predictions: statistically you have nothing to worry about. However, pay close attention to the fact that while these recent predictions are based on shaky ground there is truth in the fact that Christ will return and he hopes to find his people ready.

Good morning readers! I have a bunch of things on my mind today and so I thought that I would let them all out for you to see and hear about. Here we go!

1. If you were in Monkey Barrel this past week we talked about VAMPIRES! No, we are not setting the Bible aside and now preaching from popular media. What we are doing is taking popular media and demonstrating how lines up or does not line up with a Biblical worldview.

Now that you are done having a heart attack about us talking of Vampires in Monkey Barrel, let me tell you what we talked about. First, we discussed the various occult-like beliefs and behaviors associated with the whole world of vampires and its somewhat close association with Wicca. These are things that our Biblical worldview tells us are very real and certainly not good, pure and noble pursuits. Secondly, we saw that there are a variety of other practices associated with Vampires that are perhaps not spiritually-related but nevertheless contradictory to our Biblical worldview. Finally, we noted that those who engage in a lifestyle of fantasy and use that as a mask to avoid the pain of real life here and now are not doing themselves any good whatsoever. We need to pursue life with Jesus Christ, not fantasy.

A full discussion about this will be posted next week once I present this material to the Emergency Ministries group.

2. The second thing on my mind today is the Royal Wedding! Not the dress, not the hats, not the people, not the ring, not the weather, not the kiss, not anything like that…..come on now, what about the Royal Wedding do you think I would deem worthy for including in this blog post? ……..the sermon by the Bishop of London! I encourage you to review a few excerpts from the wedding sermon delivered earlier this morning at Westminster Abby as I was quite impressed with the truth about love and marriage presented to millions of viewers today. You can see some excerpts at http://www.officialroyalwedding2011.org/blog/2011/April/29/The-Bishop-of-London-s-Sermon

3. The third and final thing on my mind this morning is a new blog series that I have been thinking about and will begin to write shortly. I want to put the idea out there now to increase your expectation and whet your appetite. I plan to write a series entitled “The Top 10 Threats to a Teenager’s Faith”. In this series I will draw from my experience of 10 years working with teenagers to highlight some common pitfalls I have seen over and over again with the anticipation that perhaps it may assist some teenagers and parents from repeating the mistakes that others before them have already made.

That’s all for this morning!

p.s. I have noticed that my Katy Perry post from well over a month ago is STILL getting many hits every day and is currently my most popular post. Perhaps you’d like me to review more artists in the near future?

In response to my recent post regarding the disaster in Japan I was challenged by a personal communication from a reader, which stated that while they agree with the Scriptures and thoughts presented they couldn’t help but wonder how the principle of sowing and reaping applies to global disasters such as this and others. If we as a human race sow immorality, spiritual ignorance (or rejection), humanism, paganism…can we not then expect to reap destruction from this?

In my regular bible reading today I just completed the final chapters of Deuteronomy (I’m a little behind in my attempt to read the entire bible by May, but I’m trying). Throughout this section we read of Moses passing his mantle of leadership on to Joshua as the Israelites prepare to enter into the promised land. Part of this ‘passing of the torch’ involves a reminder of God’s law; specifically, the Israelites can expect to enjoy peace and prosperity in their promised land if they continue to adhere to the law of God. On the other hand, if they depart from the law of God and devote themselves to pagan idols and ways of life they can expect to experience curses and indeed have their promised land removed from them. This was not an empty threat; this is actually what happens when the Israelites become enslaved to Babylon for decades. Certainly this principle of sowing and reaping was active in the Old Testament.

What about the New Testament? We see the principle of sowing and reading taught by Paul in the letter to the Galatians.

Galatians 6:7-8 “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.”

Here are my thoughts as this pertains to our present world. Death, decay and disaster are all a part of the human experience of life because of decisions humanity has made while living in this world. It is a fundamental matter in the Christian worldview that the present imperfection experienced is as a result of humanity’s inherent sinfulness (the explicit desire to do my own things my own way) and the fact that we are reaping what we have sown from the very beginning time when sin entered the world. This is not a condition that will persist forever; however, it is a present reality.

Therefore, within the world that we live I believe that our corporate immorality and failure to acknowledge God does merit punishment and judgment; we reap what we sow. If we can really take care of ourselves completely and provide all that is necessary for humanity to experience abundant life…perhaps God allows us to try it on our own sometimes. Our inherent smallness and inability to hold everything together on our own is evident in disasters like we saw in Japan and New Orleans and in the sociological/political/religious chaos that led humanity to destroy itself in the 9/11 attacks in the US.

What makes me uncomfortable is when we start to attribute ‘blame’ (for lack of a better word) for these disasters on specific people as opposed to recognizing that it is a symptom of humanity’s ignorance. The ‘blame’ (again, for lack of a better word) lies in humanity itself and not in the individuals who are affected by these disasters. Humanity sows seeds and reaps what we have sown; in the process of this the lives of the righteous and the unrighteous are affected.

Matthew 24:6-8: “You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains.”

Japan: God’s Wrath?

Many people are now talking about the crisis that struck Japan just a week ago. I myself have been enthralled with http://www.cnn.com and http://www.cbc.ca as they share pictures and stories of the earthquake/tsunami/nuclear emergency that is all converging in just one week! This has certainly been an extremely unfortunate week for all of those living in Japan.

In the midst of crisis times like this there is always much talk about why. We saw the same thing happen after Katrina, which devastated New Orleans, and especially after the 9/11 events in New York City. I remember being in seminary during the aftermath of Katrina and watching a taped message where a pastor declared that Katrina was God’s judgment rained down on “sin city” as it was called. My classmates and I remember thinking that this was perhaps a hasty remark; I cannot remember the last time any human being knew the mind of God clearly enough to assume that he/she knew God’s motivation for causing/watching/allowing (whatever word you use, although I prefer the latter) whatever calamity takes place on earth. Furthermore, if Katrina was indeed God’s judgment on New Orleans, why just that city? Why not Los Angeles too? Is there something inherently better in the people of LA? Why not the town that I live in or the town that you live in? Are we better than those in New Orleans?

Although I have not yet heard a pastor declare such a statement regarding Japan (I have not gone looking for a statement like this either), I have perused a few blogs this week that have indicated such a sentiment has indeed been expressed. So, on top of all that those in Japan have had to deal with (and indeed are still dealing with) we need to heap a boat load of offense on them saying that if they had been good enough little boys and girls the earthquake/tsunami/nuclear disaster would have been directed to a more evil nation? Being “good enough” does not grant anyone favor with God anyways!

The religious demographic of Japan is primarily Shinto and Buddhist with a small minority of Christians and Muslims. Likely some will use this statistic to say, “see, I told you God was bringing calamity upon such a pagan nation!” This is somewhat inconsistent with our own Christian scriptures however. Consider these passages:

Matthew 5:45b “…He [God] causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.”

Luke 13:4 “…or those eighteen who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them—do you think they were more guilty than all the others living in Jerusalem?”

Job 1:20 “…The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised.”

There does not seem to be an indication that human tragedy is focused exclusively on the just or the unjust, the repentant or the non-repentant. The fact is that we live in a time when the perfect kingdom of God is still just on the horizon (though visible) while the imperfect kingdom of humanity lingers. Thus, we see glimpses of both of these in our world: we observe sunrises and sunsets each day, we enjoy beauty, love, friends, family, we rejoice over new life created, we see lives changed in a moment and we see health miraculously restored to people both through medical intervention and other unexplainable sources (i.e. God). At the same time we observe relational strife, murder, abortion, rape, abuse, suffering…earthquakes, tsunamis and nuclear disasters. The bible teaches that there is an approaching moment in time when there will be a complete merger between the kingdom of God and the kingdom that currently is (with the kingdom of God replacing and making all things new [Revelation 21]); until then however we must live in a world that experiences the reality of both kingdoms.

I wonder if there is a place on earth where disaster could strike and no one would attribute it to sinfulness? Canada…not likely. United States…been there and done that already. Israel? You might be able to make a case for God’s protection of his covenant people but yet we see that they too experience strife in this world also.

I put this topic out for discussion to a number of theology students at Vanguard College; I asked them what they would do if someone approached them in the foyer this Sunday asking about God’s role in the Japan disaster. One keen student suggested something that is somewhat refreshing for times like this.

Stephen Adam said:

“…we hear about so many people dying through this tragedy, but I wonder how many people God saved when he heard prayers. The news will focus mostly on the large number of dead and the destruction, but who knows about some small family that miraculously survived by Gods hand.”

Now there is something to think about. While it rains on the just and the unjust alike, we know that “…the prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective” (James 5:16).

Continue to pray for the people of Japan so that they can recover well from this terrible disaster.

Just about a month ago Emergency Ministries hosted a small weekend conference talking about the effect of media (i.e. music, video, magazines…) on teenage culture. Brett Ullman (www.brettullman.com) was our guest speaker for the weekend and he challenged many of us to examine the media that we allow to impact our lives. Some media has a great message about the way the world is and our role in it; other media has a distorted view and does not communicate truth about life. We were also challenged to think beyond the labels of “Christian” and “secular” when it comes to media; great messages can exist within “secular” media and some not so great messages can exist within “Christian” media.  This certainly makes decision making in our lives a little messier; however, you might be surprised with what you come up with in the end.

Last night after watching Glee, Mandy and I briefly discussed different musical artists with our houseguests. I am a music lover and sometimes I get caught up with the energy and music of a song without realizing what the song is actually saying about life. Here is a prime example of this: last night on Glee one of the competitors at regionals did the song “Raise Your Glass” by Pink. The song is full of energy and musical competence and I must say that I liked Glee’s rendition…although I have never really listened to the words.  I decided this afternoon to check it out and see if I had landed myself a “secular” song that has a message I can affirm

After doing my research…I seem to have been a little off base with this one. The whole song is a call to misfits and underdogs to rise above cultural stereotype and enjoy their distinctive and unique life (“raise your glass if you are wrong, in all the right ways, all my underdogs”). However, the alternate approach to ‘life’ portrayed in the song is about as shallow as the life that Pink is calling her “nitty gritty dirty little freaks” to come out of; it seems that she is calling them to a life of partying and indulging in senseless role reversals (in the video there is a scene where human breast milk is being fed to young cows). While the message of this song may be catchy for a while I don’t think it has the substance to make a lasting positive impact on our culture.

So…I decided to give it one more shot. I remember last night talking about the song “Firework” that was highlighted on Glee a few months back. I had forgotten which artist had recorded the song but after a simple google search I discovered that it was Katy Perry. When I read the lyrics I became convinced that I had discovered just the kind of song I was looking for: ‘secular’ in its label but with a very truthful, noble, and inspiring message. The message of the song is this: if you ever feel down and out like you’ve blown it for the last time, there is still hope for you! You are unique and cannot be replaced so don’t check out of life. You just have to find the light inside of you and let it shine…like a firework! This is the essence of the whole song; there is no obscene language and no reference to substances or sex to take away pain or hurt. This is a life giving and life inspiring song that I do feel has the substance to make a lasting positive impact on our culture. I also think it fits the Philippians 4:8 test:

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. (NIV)

Kudos to Katy for giving us such an inspiring message!

In saying all of this I am not suggesting that Katy Parry should become a role model of morality and taste for teenaged culture. (In fact, there is one short segment from this song’s video that I think we could do without…I’ll let you decide which one).  I am somewhat perplexed that the same girl that sang this song also sang “I Kissed a Girl (and I liked it)” just a few years ago. Nevertheless, I am reminded of something that my systematic theology professor would tell us students in seminary: all truth is God’s truth. What he meant is that wherever in life you find something that is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable…that is evidence of God’s fingerprints on humanity and we can celebrate that together. We can look around in our culture and find pieces of truth here and there and use these to say to people, “this, my friend, is the way!”

Unfortunately truth and lies can come out of the same mouth; I guess this is just another reason why our faith is in God and not in each other.  I believe however that truth shines brightly no matter where it is found. When our faith is in God truth will be evident and we can use this as a witness to God’s ever-present interaction with our world.

So, listen and be encouraged by Katy Perry’s talent and the truthful and admirable message she declares in her song “Firework”.

There are a few topics that I cannot help blogging about: youth ministry, parents of teenagers (though I have no personal experience I have seen lots), Christian apologetics…and popular media. I am not sure how it all fits together but one thing can be sure, you will find it all here! Keeping that in mind, here are my thoughts on last night’s season finale of ‘The Bachelor’.

Last night I was painting our kitchen while listening to the final results of this season’s ‘The Bachelor’ unfold as Mandy sat in the living room silently (and at times not so silently) cheering on Emily, her favorite. I’ve blogged about this show before because of the sometimes strange views on love that it portrays. Last night was somewhat different however as the final girl standing, Emily (much to Mandy’s pleasure), displayed real class in fighting for what she felt was honor, respect, true love and commitment from the guy that she obviously does care for.

Two things emerge from Brad and Emily’s relationship that I think our culture should pay close attention to. Let me take a moment to share these with you.

On her final date with Brad, Emily questioned him about his readiness for not only a committed relationship with her but also about his readiness for fatherhood. You see, Emily has a little girl whose dad passed away before she was born; it is therefore very important for Brad to realize he is not only getting a wife but also a family. Emily pointed out that life would not always consist of fun, games and travelling the world (as they have on the show). There will be times that are no fun and times that they will argue about many things. I love what Emily did here because she shattered the picture perfect world of ‘happily ever after’ that seems to be promoted by shows like ‘The Bachelor’ and many others by infusing a small does of reality into reality TV. Life and love are not always fairytales; they both take work and sometimes that work is not fun. This does not mean that life and love are any less worth pursuing.

Brad’s reaction to Emily’s dose of reality was a little shocking: he was offended that Emily would think that he was not ready for all of this. He came around eventually, however, I think Brad was a little too idealistic to assume that having never been married and having never had kids that he could just jump right into marriage and fatherhood without missing a beat. As one who has been married for almost 7 years and been a father for just over 2 years, I can say that you don’t really know what you expect until you get in the thick of it. Sometimes it is more wonderful than you could ever imagine and sometimes its more difficult than you ever dreamed. As the show drew to a conclusion last night we all saw that Brad was beginning to realize the truth of Emily’s reality speech and he handled it with true class: he is willing to do what it takes to make their relationship work. This is the substance of reality!

The second thing that I think was so classy last night was Emily’s reaction to watching the whole season of ‘The Bachelor’ from home (they tape the show prior to airing it…Emily knew Brad had picked her before the show aired). Her question to Brad was this: If you say that you fell in love with me early on during the show (and he did say that), there were many things I saw you doing with other girls that I think you should have saved just for me. Monday night because an incredibly difficult night for Emily as each week she watched Brad take other women on dates and share moments with them that she would rather have not seen. She said it best when she told Brad that she knew this would not be the “Emily and Brad falling in love show” but she did not realize that he was going to give the producers so much other material to work with.

I give props to Emily for standing up for her share of honor and respect. I also give props to Brad for not letting her go when it would be easy to find many other women whose standards for love are much lower than Emily’s. Despite the rocky path that their relationship has taken over the past two months the two of them indicated that they are willing to put in the time and work necessary to become a better person for the other.

Last night was supposed to be their wedding ceremony, but Emily said that they still had to work some things out before that happened. According to Brad, letting Emily go is not an option and so the two of them will continue to strive to become better people for each other and for the sake of their relationship.

It is going to take work; however, that is the nature of true love! Congrats to ‘The Bachelor’ for infusing our culture with such an honest reality of love. I pray that Brad and Emily continue to have the resolve to see this through until the end.