Sunday, June 25, 2006

Off to camp

I am heading out with 17 Jr. Highers today to 1000 Pines camp at noon today and will be gone until next Saturday. Hopefully i will have fun pictures to show after that. Last night i just started typing ideas down like crazy for a book. Unfortunately they are raw and i haven't had time to look over them, revise them, etc. so you are basically seeing like a C paper in an English class. Hopefully it may still be intellectually stimulating:

Book Idea: My journey through Christ

Apologetics were not the answer: Good and people often don’t know enough but the point is to defend who Jesus is not the Bible(The bible is not JESUS!)

The Bible does not give us the personality of Christ just his character. That is because he wants us to live in tune with his heart and to praise and exemplify him in our different personalities that he created all to be like him. There is not a Cookie Cutter Christian Personality!

Growing is a process. You go from crawling, to walking, to taking a few steps, to walking, to running. You never complain as a kid about only being able to crawl or trying to cut his legs off, but just understands that is how it is. Why is it as adults then that we forget this and go right back to getting frustrated with how we learn. In divine conspiracy we see this idea about the beatitudes. We also see it in James. God is always giving wisdom, it is more a matter of whether, you are ready to hear it or not. If you are not ready to hear it whether it is doubt or immaturity or stubbornness, you won’t hear it. The Pharisees didn’t, infants don’t, and even those with doubts want hear it. When discussing on how to lead a church, Rick Warren paralleled it to a family. Do you run a family like a democracy? No, the ones with more experience, wisdom, and maturity aka. the parents, hold more weight in the decisions. It is not a dis on those who are less spiritual, it is just how things are. In the same way that you don’t tell a kid what sex is when he is five. He just will not be able to grasp it right. And yet as Christians, we are five year old kids tugging on God’s pants and throwing temper tantrums because he want tell us how a car works!

The Word of God is what Sustains all that exists: God has created this world with the intent of helping us to learn what he truly desires and wants for us. The word of God in essence as Rob Bell would say in Velvet Elvis & Tozer in Pursuit of God is the underlying ground of how this world works. It is even what Donald Miller in Blue Like Jazz is alluding to it when he says wouldn’t it be beautiful if…

The main answer to this world is not love, it is love. I have learned that the main answer to this world is love. But it is not that sweet. Many teens in the church tend to rebel around their college years, I believe, because they do not grasp this yet. They were presented with the Bible statements of truth and then found out that they were not all true and decided that the Bible was not right. I was told my whole life that the Bible was completely true and trustworthy. After taking a Biblical literature class, I learned that the bible is almost completely based upon debate after debate. From a completely logical, non-biased secular view, You could discuss whether a certain book should be in the Bible. Then.You could start off by conjecuting what you think the author was talking about and who he was talking to in each book(this could change the whole meaning of the book ie.Jews or Gentiles). Then you could question whether a section of verses should be in that book or whether they were added during the transcription process(cults have been started off of verses out of context like this). Then you could take each verse apart and discuss the meaning of it. Then you can discuss that translation of an individual word that may change the entire meaning of a sentence and what it is trying to say(faith in Christ vs faith of Christ). In 1382-1415 The Wycliffe Bible was the 1st Bible translated into English
but not without the persecution, burning, and the banning of the Bible by the CHURCH. They believed the new translation would be inaccurate and do injustice to the meaning of the Bible in the translation process. Wycliffe was so hated for this that after he was dead his bones were dug up and burned.
You wouldn’t share this with a child because he would give up and say it is worthless, since it is not 100% true. In fact people do this all the time But on contrare. One Author used the analogy of the ocean. He said that if you are standing on the shore you are looking at the ocean. That is a true Statement. But you are not looking at the whole ocean. You are seeing just the surface of it. For someone to say the Bible is true, you are only hearing the surface of the ocean. So as soon as someone brings up a qualm with the Bible you should not allow it to say that everything is not true. It is most likely that the person is saying that the question is not on the surface of the ocean but down in the depths. For someone to say love is the answer to life is comical and yet deep. You see so many searching for love and never feeling fulfilled. Probably ¾ of the songs on the radio talk about finding the right partner, it really has almost become a god. For people that don’t believe in God, even in most movies today (put example here) If God is not the answer, Love is! You know why, because there is something deeper there. Many people here love is the answer and then laugh because they see all of the divorces and dissatisfied singles and married couples. They could give up on love, and I think a lot would, except that they are too lazy to and have nowhere else to turn. The truth of the matter is, they are trying to fit this surface idea of love(if it can even be called that) and saying it is the whole ocean. That doesn’t work either. 1 Corinthians 13 gives us the opposite. Without Love very little is worthwhile! Love is huge! Love is what causes one to give up what he is entitled to for the Good of another- that is at the heart of the incarnation of Jesus. At the center of Love is an acceptance through grace that very few find. The kind of acceptance that says you can do nothing wrong. I was a receiver and yet every time there I missed a catch my dad would say it was the quarterbacks fault. I sure I did things wrong and my dad knew that, but it sure seemed that my dad never believed it and often gave me the benefit of the doubt. In Dallas Willards Hearing God, he gives an example of his kids playing in the backyard and being completely in his will at that moment because he didn’t have to ask them to do this. I wonder if a lot of us miss the acceptance that God wants us to have. I feel like Donald Miller hits on this base truth in Searching for God knows what. Two other people that knew what they were talking about were Max Lucado in You Are Special and Brother Lawrence in Practicing the Presence of God. Lucado’s book is an inspired work. It portrays a truth about God’s love in the Bible continually in my life like few other things have. Brother Lawrence is just popular and quoted in almost every book know to man because of his example and focus. He wanted to Live in a love of God that went deeper than the surface. So how did I come to accept the Bible if I felt it was built upon debate upon debate. I trusted the words in it and how it coincided with this world. The same with love. I trusted in the Person it talks about behind these words and that if this is what he wanted us to hear that he would continue to work through it despite the human inefficiencies. That is a truth to discuss later on.

The Bible Tells us of a story of our inefficiency. Please don’t ever forget that! You can pursue holiness, you don’t have to believe we are always going to be trapped in sin and never have victory on this earth, but please don’t ever overlook that we are inadequate. And yet it is not the Point. The Point is Victory and Redemption through our Lord. There is just often a gap between those who profess victory and those who see the reality of being born under the law. The world is run so that we are never satisfied by it. You can try marriage and see if all your problems go away, it won’t work. You would be surprised how many times I have heard within Christian circles I have heard comments like, “Shoot, why is that guy complaining for being on the bench in the NBA?!? I would do that any day for the money he is making.” Umm…. Being secure in money doesn’t take away your problems! In Fact it often increases them. You talk to the pastor of a church of 20 and 20,0000 and see who deals with more problems. Talk to Christians and nonChristians alike and you will find money doesn’t satisfy. Good looks don’t satisfy. Why is it that the most beautiful girls often don’t know it and are getting surgery and no diets to become more beautiful. Pleasure doesn’t satisfy. You go to the guys that is addicted to Porn, alchohol, gambling, drugs, and have him tell you whether it satisfies. Talk to the Star of the past and see if Fame satisfies. MC Hammer For instance. Let’s face it we are set in a world that says, “You are not good enough.” I would go as far as to say it has set you up for failure. If we don’t emphasize this people will thing we are being unrealistic. This where true acceptance and redemption comes in. Max Lucado’s book once again shows a great example of the opposite.

Calvinism vs. Arminianism- I struggled for a long time between these two and trying to figure it out. I believe there are strengths and weaknesses to both. I am personally Arminianism but I believe that is beside the point. I believe there are a lot of points in the Bible where God often takes things that are appearingly contradictory when in reality they are dialectical or both true. I went thr

Different Convictions- My roommate gave me a hard time about being a stickler on cd burning and then relaxed on all of the other laws. I thought he was a walking contradiction because he wouldn’t speed at all, but then he would let words and pictures slide by his face and ears that I would never let go by. This is where the whole church split over carpet color comes in. People are going to have discrepancies and (this may go against the Bible) but as of right now believe that you can find contradictions in any person if you want to. They may be false, but you can in anyone you want to. Bring it down to earth. You may think someone is racist by a comment they make but they may not be. (Parallel to bible story somehow)

Honesty & Clear Communication are Key- As long as you feel you have to hide things, you are often just avoiding the truth with God and other

The most urgent things are often not the most important

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Soundtrack of my life....

the past week! I have listened to this playlist over and over and OVER again!
Grillz by Nelly
100 Years by Five For Fighting
You're Beautiful by James Blunt
California Love(radio edit) by 2Pac
Bailamos by Enrique Iglesias
Wordplay by Jason Mraz
You & I Both by Jason Mraz
Don't Matter by Donovan F'...(i forget)
Summertime by Will Smith
Unwritten by Natasha Bedingfield
Beverly Hills by Weezer
Collide by Howie Day
Calling All Angels by Train
Be Without You by Mary J. Blige
Bad Day by Daniel Powter
Only One by Yellowcard
Zak and Sara by Ben Folds

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Driving across country

This was my third time going across country. I felt like i had a pretty good grasp with what i was doing. I left Sunday around 7 and drove through the first night. I took an hour nap around 8AM kept driving. Making dance videos was my biggest form of entertainment. I stopped at Taco Bell and read for awhile. it was so good that i just stayed there for a few hours and kept refilling my drink and reading. Got into Las Vegas at about 10 where I stayed for the night. I decided to walk the Las Vegas strip since i never had, but it was kind of disappointing. I was already weak from driving all night, so the smell of beer and smoke just made me queezy. After walking by a few casinos i passed a topless joint and the whole scene kinda just didn't sit right, so i left. Oh, Las Vegas... Maybe i was just never meant to be a party boy! :) So i treated myself to IN-N-OUT to cheer myself up with a chocolate shake and burger. As i was leaving IN-N-OUT I struck up a conversation with a homeless guy named poppee. He ended up preaching to me for about 20 minutes about how God was good. i love how God seems to show up in the most unlikely places in the most timely of ways. I pulled into San Diego around 2 the next day and was excited to be there. I have been here a week and half surfed 4 times already. I am better than i used to be from skating in Indiana. I have been doing a lot of planning for my two jobs and been very busy. Right now i am full time at a Summer kids day camp from 8-4 and part time Jr. High Youth pastor at Canyon Hills Community Church. Hopefully things will settle down a little but my schedule is very filled and fulfilling. I have gotten to connect with a lot of friends. Travis Howard, a good friend just got marrie this last Saturday. Ben Tellinghusen gets married early September. Andrew Wingler July 15. Amanda Barrack in Mid August. A LOT of good friends have found the ONE! IT's CRAZY! Got to go for now. I will be back with some thoughts soon. My quick thought for right now: A lot of times we don't do things in the church building out of respect for God. My question is since the body of Christ is found more in the people than a building, should our emphasis not totally neglect, but maybe somewhat shift from holding our tongue in a church building to keeping certain filth by all means necessary out of our Christian circles?

me and the sisters

Kelly and Brenton working on Wedding Details... the wedding is July 16th!

Brandon going to marry to past teens from his youth group

the girls

goin on the road

cool sunset in Indiana

cool road in Nebraska

cool tree :)

The Rockies

In Nevada

the jr. high room

visiting Levi at Azusa Pacific

Quick Admiration

God is GOOD! I had my first day at the summer kids day camp from 8-4:30! I came and took a nap on a couch in my office at the jr. high that i am working at part time. When i woke up, i felt very attacked. It was the first time i have felt lonely in a LONG time. I sat down and read and then got some work done. I was walking around trying to get out of that slump and Trace Faubel and Courtney Whitmore called. They were just what i needed for encouragement. Psalm 23 is so true. God does always provide when it is needed. This summer is going to be a lot of fun, but these first couple of weeks are very busy with planning and it drains me. The rest will fall more into place i think. I am planning on posting some pictures tomorrow when i have a little more time, so stay posted.

Quick Admiration

God is GOOD! I had my first day at the summer kids day camp from 8-4:30! I came and took a nap on a couch in my office at the jr. high that i am working at part time. When i woke up, i felt very attacked. It was the first time i have felt lonely in a LONG time. I sat down and read and then got some work done. I was walking around trying to get out of that slump and Trace Faubel and Courtney Whitmore called. They were just what i needed for encouragement. Psalm 23 is so true. God does always provide when it is needed. This summer is going to be a lot of fun, but these first couple of weeks are very busy with planning and it drains me. The rest will fall more into place i think. I am planning on posting some pictures tomorrow when i have a little more time, so stay posted

Wednesday, June 07, 2006


These are raw thoughts that i typed out at 2AM and haven't double checked yet, so take it for what it is worth... Raw...

Recently an author used an illustration of looking someone looking at the surface of the ocean and saying that they have seen the ocean. What they say is truth, but only a small fraction of the total truth. I think I have found and beginning to understand this to be true about many of the truths of Christianity. I think at this point of perspective and where you go from here is where many disputes in the church take place. My inquisitive mind would not let me settle with just seeing the surface of the ocean if I knew there was more but for many Christians seeing the surface is sufficient. (This is not questioning or rating spiritual levels, but using a word picture to help decipher differences).This Christian is very happy with reading the word and living out the obvious and upfront truths of the Bible without having to go into an indepth Bible study into the commentaries and Biblical Literature issues. They have accepted the solid truths claimed by the Bible and watched them come to pass in their lives as they live. For other Christians, they need the depths of Christianity. They must not only live out truths told to them but explore, struggle, and understand in order to come up to the surface with so much more insight, hope, and base for why Christianity and the ocean is so true. For others Christians, they have been told about the surface truths of Christianity and are hurt to discover there is so much more under the surface. Some even get so far lost into this concept that they drown in the depths of the ocean of Christianity. If only they could recognize that even those who go down and explore the depths sooner or later will come back to the SAME surface! The best example I can give is that of Love. In 1 Cor. 13: we read that “above all put on love.” If someone were to say that Love were the answer to Christianity, I could agree with that. I believe that is only the surface of it though. To begin to go below the surface of that statement and to realize that Love is the instigator of hope and that for someone to love they will not show favoritism and for someone to love they will establish acceptance and self-worth in others, etc. To say that Love is the answer is the biggest OVERSTATEMENT and UNDERSTATEMENT of the century! In one sense it is so true and encompasses everything and makes the surface believer completely satisfied. In another sense to make that statement and not go any further into detail would be an injustice to the depths believer. The sad part is that all too often the depths believer never takes time to come up and enjoy the colors and sun setting on the surface while the surface believer never takes the time to explore the depths. In either case, it is still the same ocean in the surface and in the depths. We need not get caught up in who is better or worse, but learn to help each other enjoy the fullness of the ocean!

Saturday, June 03, 2006

For Those Sick People Who Find Enjoyment Out Of My Misfortune!

I HIT A LITTLE OLD LADY IN THE HEAD! So a few weeks ago me and some friends went to a park to hangout. We decided to play kickball so i ran to the car to get the ball. As i was dribbling back across the field i decided that it would be comical to loft the ball over a decent size bush separating me from my friends and land it on top of them. I successfully shanked the ball 90 degrees... that's okay though because noone saw me... right?!? Wrong. As the ball sailed through the air the wind started to carry the ball in the general direction of couple walking on the sidewalk, seemingly in their 60's or 70's. Oh yes leave it to me, the couple even saw it coming! The woman feebly raised her hands and ducked out of her way to no avail and seconds later i nailed the lady on the top of the head...Great shot... if i meant to do it, but i didn't. The lady stumbled to the side holding her head and despite my constant apologies never smiled or said any cordial "that's okays." Leave it to me! So this whole blog is dedicated to my accident prone life, i hope you enjoy"

+I Nailed a Mom in the Head With A Coke Bottle A mom was visiting IWU from Louisiana and was watching a movie in our school theater. After the movie credits there were just a few people left in the theater and i got ancy so i shot my empty pepsi bottle at a trash can at the top of the seats. I missed and decided to throw the bottle back done to a friend to give him a shot. Once again my bearings were off and the bottle sailed directly to the only other people in the theater and hit a mom straight on the head with the plastic cup in a perfect spiraling motion. once again if only i meant to... instead i walk out blushing and in complete embarrassment
+I Kneed Robin Thada in the Head We were at a friends house three years ago and Robin said she didn't know any self defense. I decided to teach her something i saw once in the movies. I told her if a guy approaches, kick him where it counts. Then when he bends over in reacthion to that grab his head and knee him. Well i am acting this out with Robin. It just turns out when i grabbed her head, she decided to show no resistance to my action and i kneed her hard. Her mouth was apparently open because I heard her teeth clench together.
+Nailed Trace With My Surfboard ONe time when i was learning how to surf i got caught in traces wave and when we both pulled out, my board came up, nailed, and scratched Trace in the Face. Four Years Ago
+Tore My ACl playing Church League basketball year ago
+Popped a Finger Tendon Playing Catch in the last joint of my middle finger. It just dangled unless it was in a splint. I did it playing catch!... too bad i played receiver for five years of football and never hurt my hands playing. Less than a year ago
+Broke My hand Doing a Back FlipAlso one of those humiliating experiences. Not only did it keep me out of basketball, but it was in front of half the cheerleading squad and jr.high soccer team at my high school.
+Hit By Surfboard, Lost Tooth, & Stung by Sting Ray Surfing I tried to do a trick that i wasn't ready for and the surfboard came back and hit me in the face. When i rose to the surface i realized i was bleeding on my face and that i needed to go to shore. I also spit out a tooth and realized i was bleeding in my mouth too. As i was wading in, a sting ray snagged the inside of my foot. Go figure, out of all days, this is the only day that i have ever gone onto shore and been hit on by girls because i was a surfer!
+A Blister From Plunging A Toilet: In High school i had to take it easy one week of football practice because i had a huge blister in the middle of my hand and i couldn't catch well as a receiver. The Reason: I clogged my football coaches toilet one night and couldn't unclog it with his old school plunger. My the time i finished i had a huge blister on my hand.
+Broke a Friends Finger at youth group playing basketball. I was in jr. high and i accidentally bumped the guy i was guarding into the wall and he broke his finger
+Football Player Sent Away in Ambulance It was an honest mistake. It was a missed field goal and as i dove for the lose ball i pinned the opponent up on his neck. He got a stinger and was taken off the field in an ambulance. Talk about your awkward moment when you feel completely horrible for hurting someone so bad and your teammates are on the otherside trying to give you a high five!
+I have had at least a few incidents of traffic tickets and accidents(all too personal to put on the internet) If you knew you may understand better

I might add more later, but that is all for now. I hope if nothing else, that you may take a little more pride in your life and that yuo may learn to stay away from me if you intend to never be hurt.

The Pastor in Me found a verse today that kind of relates:
"For he who makes it trusts in his own creation; he makes idols that cannot speak. Woe to Him who says to wood, 'Come to life!' Or to lifeless stone, 'Wake up!' Can it give guidance? It is covered with gold and silver; there is no breath in it." Malachi 2:18-19

The Big Truth Here: One of the biggest truths and advantages we have to offer everyone in the world is that we know we are desperate by ourselves. Sure, we can do okay, but we SURE hope there is something bigger than us, because otherwise our future begins to look very blique, screwed up, and VERY accident prone with nothing to laugh at!

Thursday, June 01, 2006

From Now On!

My goal is to post something at least once a week. I know i have been bad about posting updates, but for those of you interested in watching my life and going through my journey with the Lord with me, i hope you will join in. I love comments if you have thoughts about what i am going through! and that email is legit if you need to contact me. Hope you enjoy the ride.

Quote for Thought

"Pretty soon i'lll be going to GOd, standing before Him. I'd go through anything if i could just see God for a moment. My comfort in this life is that i see Him by faith."
Practicing God's Presence by Brother Lawrence

"I'd go through anything if i could just see God for a moment."
Stop and really think about it for a second before reading on!!!
This statement alone has challenged me significantly to reevaluate the extent of my desire and love for God.