Saturday, December 29, 2007

posting from new device...

I am testing the ability to type quickly on my new device. This could take a while to get use to but I think this will work out ok. It will probably be easier to type an email so I don't waste bandwidth. Cool. Oh why test? I have a mission trip on the horizon and want to blog about it with out taking my laptop. I am stoked! I just wish Jen was going with me.

Monday, December 24, 2007

the funny things that come out of kids mouths...

Caroline made a comment the other day that was hilarious and I wanted to blog about so I don't forget it when she is 30.

Sitting around the table at Los Marichis...

Caroline: "... she can't eat meat."

Dad: "Why can't she eat meat, Caroline?"

Caroline: "Photographers can't eat meat."

Laughter erupts...

Dad: "Caroline, do you mean Vegetarians?"

Caroline: "giggle...giggle...giggle..."


Wednesday, December 19, 2007

i took a minute out of my day...

There are songs that just hit you. They find you where you are, maybe even tell you where you are at in your life even when you weren't quite aware you where there? I know..that sentence doesn't make sense. It is not suppose to make any sense.

Today, the song in my head is Broken by Lifehouse. I can't stop singing it in my head. My life has a soundtrack. It has a great soundtrack. Everything is put to music in my mind. I dream and it has a soundtrack. Consumed with music maybe? I don't know, but today this song keeps playing. it is today's soundtrack and the more i sing it in my head, the closer it comes to finding a home on Sunday morning at RVCC.

I really dig the acoustic version from MTV Unplugged... it is out on Youtube i think.

Don't is just a bad day and i am sure that the song doesn't describe exactly what is going on in my life. It is just how I am feeling at the moment. (That little disclaimer is for the people who read my blog and call me immediately like I am on suicide watch or something) dang that was funny :)


here are the lyrics...

The broken clock is a comfort, it helps me sleep tonight
Maybe it can stop tomorrow from stealing all my time
I am here still waiting though I still have my doubts
I am damaged at best, like you've already figured out

I'm falling apart, I'm barely breathing
With a broken heart that's still beating
In the pain there is healing
In your name I find meaning
So I'm holdin' on, I'm holdin' on, I'm holdin' on
I'm barely holdin' on to you

The broken locks were a warning you got inside my head
I tried my best to be guarded, I'm an open book instead
I still see your reflection inside of my eyes
That are looking for purpose, they're still looking for life

I'm falling apart, I'm barely breathing
With a broken heart that's still beating
In the pain is there healing
In your name I find meaning
So I'm holdin' on, I'm holdin' on, I'm holdin' on
I'm barely holdin' on to you

I'm hanging on another day just to see what you will throw my way
And I'm hanging on to the words you say
You said that I will be ok

The broken lights on the freeway left me here alone
I may have lost my way now, haven't forgotten my way home

I'm falling apart, I'm barely breathing
With a broken heart that's still beating
In the pain there is healing
In your name I find meaning
So I'm holdin' on, I'm holdin' on, I'm holdin' on
I'm barely holdin' on to you

I'm holdin' on
I'm holdin' on
I'm barely holdin' on to you

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

progressive dinner....

This past Saturday, we had our Annual Progressive Dinner. We had tons of great food, fellowship and fun. There was an impromptu snowball fight and rock band on the xbox 360 at the Purpero's. Here are some pictures of the evening. A great time was had by all. Thank you to the Pekkala's, Moores, Tiu's, and Purpero's for hosting the event! We even had a visit from the Grinch.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

four guys on a road trip....

Well, we are in the midst of our road trip. Four guys, 4 days, a military graduation of our friend John. It has been very good so far. I think God had way more in store for us than a visit to support John. We felt to commemorate our trip, we needed something spectacular! So Ed and Eli spent the entire night on the choreography and Alan picked the music! All we needed was a few hours of practice and it was perfect. Enjoy!

Congrats John! We are very proud of you!

Monday, December 10, 2007

and the Heisman goes to...

It is well documented that I am a sports fanatic. So no further explanation.

Saturday night I watched the Heisman Trophy Award Show. I really did not feel that there was a legitimate contender in the group. My pick is Chris Wells. I am biased. I surely was not rooting for Tim Tebow from Florida. After watching his Florida Gators dismantle the Buckeyes in the National Championship game, I could not honestly support a Gator for the Heisman.

As I watched the great stories about how these kids had to battle against the odds to make it to this point in their life, I was almost disappointed. Why does everyone have to have this "story"? Why can't just one of them be a normal person? I know the media like to elaborate... it makes for better television. Normal people can be inspiring to others? Right? I hope! I am normal, at least I like to think I am :) and my hope is that I might inspire someone... then I wonder... what do I really want people to see about me that might inspire them? Good question.

I listened to Tim Tebow's story. He birth was nearly aborted. His parents had to make a decision about his life! How difficult is that to do? Sacrifice their son so that mother might live? His father talked about prayer in the story. His mother was open to God's will for their lives. Tim just continued to smile. He had every opportunity to talk about his story. He could have went on about the odds that he faced... even before his birth. Tim just smiled at the camera and said,"My faith in Jesus Christ is why I am here today." We hear a lot of celebrities make those same statements in front of the camera, but don't really live them out in their day to day life. Tim went on to say, "My faith in God is first, my relationship with my family is second, my academics is third and football is fourth." I believed him. He said, "My father lived out his faith in front of me everyday." That was the statement that sold me on Tim Tebow. It told me that he really knew about having a relationship with God.

I began to root for Tim Tebow as the Heisman Trophy winner. He is a great example and wants to be that example. He is proof that it comes down to the process of life to make you who you are and who you can be. He is a good grape :) (listen to Steve's message from this weekend). We are given opportunities in our life to influence people, Tim Tebow took full advantage of his opportunity on Saturday night. He proved to the world that your passion for God can overflow into all aspects of your life. He lived out his faith in front of millions of people on campus, at practice, and on game day. He found himself blessed with the Heisman Trophy, but more important he got a chance to share what God can do with a person who is obedient.

Congratulations Tim Tebow!

I am now a fan.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Rob Bell...

I have been looking forward to this for a very long time. I heard Rob Bell speak 3 years ago in Atlanta, GA at the National Youth Workers Convention. I still listen to the recording of his message once a month. It had a great impact on me. It still does every time I listen. There are people you just connect with, connect with their style, connect with their teaching. You appreciate their thoughts and how they can translate those thoughts into words that can move people. I long for that type of gift, but it is not in me. I have met three teachers in my life that I can say have reached out to me with their words and have made God real to me. Don't mistake the last comment, I have been touched by many people along my path that have changed my life in one way or another. These three people are extraordinary teachers to me and share their gifts with me. The first is Steve North, he opened a new world to me, a world with Jesus being more than a picture on the wall. The second is Steve Good, he continues to stretch me and change me and I can't wait to hear what is next from him. The third is Rob Bell.

Last night, we sat at the feet of our rabbi. We drove to Cleveland to hear Rob Bell. He is on the "the gods aren't angry" tour. The proceeds of the tour go to an overseas mission. Rob is a little dramatic, surprisingly funny, and amazingly deep. He walked out on stage and began to speak. "There was this cavewoman...".

Rob (if I may call him Rob for the sake of the blog) went on to tell a story about how we as humans from the beginning have felt as if we had to work to gain favor from the gods. The vicious cycle of sacrifice, favor, more sacrifice to increase favor, gods offended, more sacrifice required, and so on and so forth left the human race not knowing where they stood. He told stories of different gods and why they were worshiped and how this type of sacrificial worship is doomed to fail for us. Rob went on to talk about how the one true God changed this with His Son, the only true sacrifice. He talked about father Abraham had many sons...and many sons had father Abraham :), and as Abraham did as God asked and went up on the mountain to sacrifice his first son, Rob taught us about how our God is a god who provides.... He provided Abraham with a ram to sacrifice instead of his son. A god who provides. A god with which you know where you stand.

Rob continued this theme though out the talk. Weaving personal stories about people in his life with truth from scripture. He landed on rituals and how over the ages we have become accustomed to rituals. We use rituals to help us understand, cope, comfort and redeem ourselves. I don't feel as if Rob was against rituals, but that we have sort of lost the understanding of why we continue to practice them over the centuries. Rob connected the ritual of sacrifice in the old testament, to the sacrifice of Jesus in the new testament, all the way to the cutting (self mutilation) of todays generation to cope with the craziness in their lives. Rob felt as if the need to cut stems from the need to sacrifice. God chose to sacrifice Jesus at the altar of the cross (Rob made altar references all evening) because we as humans could make the connection. We could find comfort in the sacrifice in some strange way. He wrapped the talk up in an amazing way, tying in that all of this is done out of love. Love wins.

There is no way I can describe the entire talk in two paragraphs. I would not want to attempt that task. Rob talked for an hour and 45 minutes without notes. Impressive! One item worth mentioning... Rob sneezed and in his words, "Twenty one cities in twenty six days and I sneeze in Cleveland. I have been fighting that since Cave woman!". He was shook for a few seconds, but his sense of humor took over and made a great recovery. I am still trying to process everything he talked about to come up with my own conclusions. I can say that it was amazing. I can say that some how I am changed. I have ideas I have never even entertained in my mind. That notion excites me tremendously. I am sure there will be another blog to put down my thoughts, but not tonight. I am still soaking in one of the best talks I have ever heard in my life. I sit here, still covered in the dust of my rabbi. I am sure Rob Bell does not appreciate the rabbi reference, but I have been following his teaching for almost 4 years. Anxiously awaiting his next sermon, book or video. Awaiting his dust...