Friday, October 31, 2014

Constantine Premiere and Jumanji Review (SBU Podcast)

Some thoughts on the Constantine TV series Premiere and a review of Jumanji! Plus some thoughts on how conflict displays and forms character, both in fiction and in life.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

In Search Of Truth, "Conflict And Character"

Submitted by -Jason Link

There is a basic yet crucial rule to storytelling: conflict reveals character. In order to show an audience who your characters are, you need to put your characters in situations where they face conflict (an obstacle that prevents them from reaching their goal). The greater the conflict, the greater the revelation of character. This is why the heroes we love in stories walk the more difficult road.

Yet conflict not only reveals the deeper identities of fictional characters, it also reveals who we are in real life.

There is one particular experience I had that drove this lesson home. It happened a few years back when it was about time for me to renew my visa in Nicaragua. I drove down to the Nicaraguan/Costa Rican border to get new stamps in my passport. It was the second of January, and I was about to learn the hard way that the day after New Year’s was one of the worst times to cross and re-cross the border. It seemed that Costa Rica and Nicaragua were swapping populations on that day because the line stretched out horribly, zigzagged, and showed no end in sight. And it was a line that barely moved. It seemed like fifteen minutes would pass between each trudging footstep forward. I had taken my place in line in the morning. The hot sun burned my neck, but then dark clouds rolled in and rained on me, drenching my clothes before rolling away. Then the sun came back out and dried my clothes, but more clouds rolled in to rain on me again. The sun came out yet again and then went down. When I finished my time renewing my visa, it was dark out. I had stood in line for eleven hours.

As I had stood there and waited, I learned something about people: they show who they are when put in frustrating situations. I could tell who the cutthroats were, those who pushed and shoved or used deception to get in front of others. I could tell who the kind people were, the strangers who would hold my place while I went to get a drink of water. What I observed of those who shared in that horrible experience of crossing the border gave me a small glimpse of who they really were.

But let’s up the stakes a bit. Let’s imagine that the line wasn’t to make a routine cross from one country to another but to get onto a limited number of lifeboats on a quickly sinking ship. In such a life and death situation we would get an even better look at who people truly are—the selfish who would fight and claw their way over their own friends and family to get to the front, and the selfless who would give their place up so that others could live.

Who are you when the chips are down and the stakes are high? Who am I? If we really think about it, we may not be happy with the answer. But conflict does something more than just reveal our characters; it changes our characters as well. Think about the story of the Prodigal Son. He had a wild lifestyle of pleasure that did little good for anyone; but then his money ran out and the party was over. He confronted conflict, one that came in the form of poverty; and because he faced this conflict, he decided to change his course in life and return to his loving father. If he had not faced this conflict, he probably would have continued on in his wild living. Hard times instigated his change.

In each conflict we face we have a choice in how we respond. Over time, our choices become habits; and depending on the choices we consistently make, we either get bitter or get better. As Paul writes in his letter to the Romans: “We know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope” (Romans 5:3-4). Therefore when we face conflict, we can picture our life stories being written. What type of characters are we? What character do we want to be? Those who strive for hope? With our life story in mind, we can look at conflicts as opportunities to change who we are—to become the people that God would have us become. We remember that the heroes in stories walk the more difficult road. But they are deemed heroes because of it.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Extra Life Wrap-Up

The Extra Life event went wonderfully and was a great experience for me. I'm already looking forward to next year!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

24-Hour Video Game Live-Stream This Saturday!

The big weekend is almost here!

From 7am Pacific this Saturday until 7am Pacific this Sunday, I will be attempting a 24-hour video game marathon in support of our fundraising efforts for the Extra-Life charity. 

You can watch any or all of the live-stream at or


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Dr. Who and DC Movies! (SBU Podcast)

Part 2 of David Arington's thoughts on Dr. Who Season 1 and a conversation about the latest DC Movie News!

Monday, October 20, 2014

In Search Of Truth, Hebrews 7:11-19

The author of Hebrews points out that "perfection" was not attainable for us under the Levitical priesthood and system of law. The Greek word for "perfection" here means "completion, fulfillment and consummation". In the context of the book of Hebrews, this would refer to the completeness of our unity with Yahweh and receiving his rescue from our sin, as well as his promised rest and reward for his people.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Dracula: Untold Review (SBU Podcast)

A review of "Dracula: Untold" and a look at the often forgotten "priestly" role of Jesus!

In Search Of Truth, Hebrews 7:4-10

A theme of Hebrews so far has been "holding on to hope and confidence in Yahweh so that we can be engaged in his plans and experience his blessing and rest". In the verses we looked at previously, the author has been building an argument for trusting in Jesus as the ultimate priest/go-between for humanity and Yahweh. The popular idea today that "all paths lead to God" conflicts with the point being made in Hebrews, that Jesus is far superior to any other so-called, or even true, representative of God.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Help Kids By Getting Cool Stuff For Yourself!

Spirit Blade Productions and Christian Geek Central are both participating in the October 25th Extra-Life charity event to raise money for children in serious need of medical care.

Our small team of five participants is taking on the task of collecting a combined total of $1000 in donations for this cause. As of writing this we are at 22% of our goal with 11 more days to reach $1000! That's a good start, but we need YOUR help to reach the finish line! And you can even get some cool goodies while supporting the cause!

From now until the end of Sunday, October 26th, every penny received from purchases at the Spirit Blade Productions online store will be donated to the Christian Geek Central Team's fundraising efforts for the Extra-Life charity. So go treat yourself or a friend to some cool goodies and know that you're helping kids who really need it in the process!

There are also special bonuses for those who donate to Paeter Frandsen's personal Extra-Life  efforts (which also contributes to the overall CGC Team goal) on or before Thursday, October 23rd:

Receive download links for every product in Spirit Blade Productions' digital library! (Donation of $20. Includes Spirit Blade: Special Edition and song bundle, Spirit Blade: Dark Ritual and song bundle, and Pilgrim's Progress: Similitude Of A Dream! $35 value!! Include your e-mail address with donation. Links will be issued by October 31st.)
Paeter will play a game (if available to him) or sing a song (if on i-tunes) of your choice during his 24-hour live stream for Christian Geek Central! (1st 5 donations of $25.)
Co-host an episode of the Spirit Blade Underground Podcast with Paeter! (1st 3 donations of $50. Include your e-mail address with donation. Redemption of this bonus prize expires March 1st 2015.)
Please help us represent Christ well as we aim to look outside of ourselves toward the needs of others. Even a donation of $5 would be a wonderful help to us as we endeavor to tangibly and visibly bear the image of Christ to these kids and their families.

To help us reach our goal:

1. Visit the Spirit Blade Productions store 
2. Click on any team member on the Christian Geek Central Extra-Life Page! 

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Left Behind or Why Christian Movies Suck (SBU Podcast)

Some thoughts on the Left Behind movie and why Christian movies suck. Plus some "Trek Talk" as Matt McKinney shares his favorite episode of all time!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

In Search Of Truth, Hebrews Recap, 1:1-7:3

A significant theme of Hebrews so far has been "holding on to hope and confidence in Yahweh so that we can be engaged in his plans and experience his blessing and rest".