Saturday, February 28, 2009
today is deborah's birthday and our daughter, jessica, and her 22 month old son, jay, came to visit from ohio for the weekend. while deb, jessica, and debs' mom went out for a day of pampering, jay and i went to fort discovery to have some fun. i had the best time just watching little jay say "hi" to all the kids - he is very social. he especially liked playing in the water area and getting soaked. what a joy! i hope deborah is having as great a birthday as i am.
Friday, February 27, 2009
if i am going to gripe about television commercials that suck then i must give equal time to those that don't. if you watched the academy awards show last sunday night you might have seen this ad for truenorth snacks. it smoked anything i've seen in a long time! here is a company not trying to sell you on their product but to show people doing inspirational things and the 60 second "inspiration cafe" spot did that. to me, that is what image and branding is all about. i would rather support something that brings good things to life and truenorth snacks have shown me that their brand is far superior to any other. thank you truenorth snacks.
Thursday, February 26, 2009
our journey team is beginning a five week look at the new francis chan book "crazy love". chan has produced a 10 week study dvd that we are going to condense into five weeks leading into the easter celebration. my take on the essence of the book is how do we receive this crazy love our Maker has for us and what do we do with it. it asks us to look at some real questions about our perception of God and our motivations for serving Him. i ask myself the question, "how much is in my love tank for God and what am i willing to do to really know that love"? what is my motivation for wanting to seek Him? am i looking to get something out of it only for myself? do i want some sort of credit for "following Jesus"? is there any sort of "what's in it for me" thought pattern. i think that when there are traces of self in it, it ain't gonna happen like you think. so i am asking this question of myself over and over, "what am i looking for"? i come back to the same answer. really all God asks of us is to love Him and to love one another. pretty simple don't you think? not really! what could be harder than learning to love someone or something you don't like? if we focused on just those two things all of our lives this world would be the place God created it to be. and don't we owe Him that? how much of a life would we have without Him? now there is a big "but" in all of this. i would, BUT, i don't/can't..... i can find many excuses why i don't follow Him. why i don't fully and completely give all of me to Him. some of it lies in my inability to really know Him. i have read some of the bible and i have read some books but i still ask the question, "how do i really love someone or something that i can not physically see, hear or touch"? i can make the statement, "i love Jesus" but do i really? and there is no reason to try to fake it or con yourself - He knows our hearts better than we do. so for me it's time to cut the crap and truly find some crazy love for Him! this is gonna be wild, hang on!
Friday, February 13, 2009
i shot this photo this morning of the roses i got for my valentine. when i saw these i knew i wanted them for her. they represent what she means to me - beauty and love. what i also got in this photo was God's glory in the rays of sunlight penetrating the morning sky. valentine's day is "officially" tomorrow. why do we have an official day designated for love? why don't we celebrate love everyday? i want to wake up in the mornings with immense feelings of love for my Savior but i would be lying if i said i did. usually i just struggle to get out of bed and into the kitchen to start the coffee maker. why is the coffee maker a stronger feeling of need in me than my Maker every morning? i am reading the book "the shack" by william young (no relation). it is an interesting look at our lives and loves in relation to God, our father, Christ, our Savior, and the Holy Spirit, our daily bread. if you have a history of church going at all, you have a knowledge of the Trinity but what does that mean to our daily life? what does my love for God look like in my daily life? why don't i just "get it"? i tell myself that this is a work in progress and we all have our own identity in Christ and life around us. we all have a different path with different desires. but as paul says in 1 corinthians 13 verse 7, "it always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres." those words from paul sum up so much. love is my valentine and it is beautiful.
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
"love is patient, love is kind. it does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. it is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs." 1 corinthians 13:4-5. sharing is love and recently i have been following a story of love shared. it is a story of love that i am not familiar with but that has pierced my heart. this story is being told in a blog titled "i see love" written by jill smith who works with my wife. jill is pregnant with her fourth child, a daughter named lily. lily has been diagnosed with trisomy 18 sometimes known as edwards syndrome which has an extremely high mortality rate. to me the story is not about life or death, it is about love. i urge you to read the story of lily, here is a link to jill's blog: http://iseeloveblog.blogspot.com/
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
in a recent post i said i would comment on francis chan's "crazy love" after i finished. it is incredible! i highly recommend this book. i downloaded the audiobook off itunes and have been listening and at times, following along in the book. chan tells it like it is - sometimes a little in your face but definitely things we need to make us "uncomfortable". i have been pursuing the desire to do a short-term missions project and it is going to happen. not only did chan's message rev up my motivation but another God-thing popped up to where this missions project will have potential to touch many lives. God never ceases to amaze me. i just have to let go and let Him. please read this book, it will rock you!
Friday, February 06, 2009
beware of the obamaphobia. it is taking over the world. we are turning into obama groupies looking for the next orgy. don't get me wrong, i not only voted for obama, i believe he has the ability to really change our government and our standing in the world, but he is not the messiah. and watch out - we are fickle people and will be cutting his legs out from under him before long once he starts doing things we don't agree with. until then some stupid obamaphobia stuff is swirling all around us. a chia head barack obama? give me a break! i guess people will buy anything. we need to change to this new tagline, "keeping up with the obamas". i mean they have knock off clothing the obamas have worn. there are obama family look-a-likes springing up everywhere. people, get a grip!! the media is turning all of us into mush. every show is obama this and obama that but what we need is help to get our country going in a positive direction. there are people losing jobs, housing and hope. our schools systems are pretty much broke and our cities and communities will continue to spiral down economically as more and more people lose jobs. lets stop the clambake and get real. we need some major changes and we need them now. and they start with each and every one of us individually. are you ready for real change? america said they wanted it now lets step up to the plate. president obama can not do this by himself, we all have to pull together. this obama chia is just the type thing to start with - stop buying crap you don't need!
Wednesday, February 04, 2009
if you are as old as i am you probably remember the 1970 movie "love story" starring ryan o'neal and ali macgraw. a famous phrase arose to become one of the top 20 movie quotes of all-time, "love means never having to say you're sorry". a story of young love against parental wishes and ending in death of a loved one. while it sounded pretty cheesy back then, there is a certain reality to that phrase. unconditional love requires no apologies does it? when we makes mistakes, the love God gives forgives without hesitation, without explanation, without consideration - it just does. this thing called love is complicated yet simple. we humans probably make it more difficult than it is meant to be. what is love?
Tuesday, February 03, 2009
i saw this video on espn's "outside the lines" and the message of it really says a lot. a very interesting point made by one of the inmates is how in the game of tennis - just as it is in life - you need to stay inside the lines - outside the lines is out.
i am listening - yes listening - to the book, "crazy love" by francis chan. check it out on his website: http://www.crazylovebook.com/. francis chan is the pastor of cornerstone church in simi valley, california as well as a sought after speaker at many conferences. i downloaded this book off itunes so that i could listen to chan instead of reading to myself. i will post again when finished but i highly recommend this book in either written or audio form. it's crazy!
so the headlines in the sports world read that manny ramirez and his agent have turned down a one-year, 25 million dollar contract offer with the los angeles dodgers - what?! how much are these idiots going to offer players? when are the sports fans going to mutiny? in the financial times we are in, when will people wake up - sports fans in particular - and say, "we're just not that into you". i hope manny can't find another offer. i love sports but i am getting very weary of the prices demanded and paid to these self-centered egomaniacs. we are getting close to that famous phrase from the movie, "network", "i'm mad as hell and i'm not gonna take it anymore!!" give us a break!
Monday, February 02, 2009
are you kidding me? was that one of the best, if not the best, superbowls of all time? a one hundred yard interception return for a touchdown to end the half, springsteen at the half, and so many incredible second half plays. and i am leaving out jennifer hudson singing again after the tragedy in her life. wow!! i am hungover this morning. the arizona cardinals have to be feeling so empty to come so close and not win, but they showed why you should never give up. this game epitomized the meaning of hope. and it just seems like hope is all around us if we will just reach up and grab a hold of it. even when the chips are down. do you remember the catch that santonio holmes missed right before the game winning catch? one went right through his hands on the other side of the end zone one play before he caught "the big one". he forgot the one he missed so he could remember the one he caught. now that is hope - never give up.