Monday, December 20, 2010

Take a listen.
Follow that listen by action.
I have much to learn about being a "doer and not a hearer only that deceives himself."

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Check out this link.
It's rare, but sometimes you get to look what the Bible calls "the gospel" right in the face.
Do I carry this same good news this obviously?

Maybe this Christmas we could join together in the revolt of true Christianity.
Maybe we could revolt against our selfishness by not consuming but giving.
Maybe this season of advent could be a conspiracy...a joining together to oppose a power.
Maybe our churches and our souls have forgotten that Christianity is not a religion made by man contained by man's own power.
Maybe we could acknowledge that it is a revolution of doing literal things.
Maybe if I took my money and you took yours and decided to pour, not our funds alone, but our love into these people things would change.

Actually, that is not a maybe.
It would change things.

Maybe you'll join in?

My typical excuse: I don't know how to help and where to donate. And even then, how do I know that my money will get to the people in need?
My response this time: The link is right there. I have to do something. They have proven they are legit by their transparency and stories. Do I really have so small a faith that I can't even trust God to use my money in the best way he sees fit after I have obeyed and given it?

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Makes you want to buy them, huh.
This is about more than blue jeans.
There are always new frontiers to be explored.
What are yours?

Friday, November 12, 2010

This is superficial.
Superficial can be fun too.
And fun is beneficial.

I walked around my room and took pictures of the items I saw that had a piece of me in them. No they don't define me entirely or sum me up and, therefore, hold me down. However, these things just have a little part of my story in them.

How to define your style?
For me:
-old soul
-worn out means worn in
-invest and, therefore, spend less in the long term

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Introduction to James Savage's lesson for Fall Retreat 2010.

Radical Abandonment=True Fulfillment

All who were involved...thanks for a great weekend.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

If my guiding light originates within myself, my path will press on toward pain.
If in the "Father of lights, there is no variation or shadow due to change."
Taken by Kyle.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Conversation between myself and a friend at church yesterday:
(I've known this guy for a while and had no idea)

"Hey man, how you doin? Oh, I'm glad to see you grabbed one of the Bibles that the church gives out."

"I'm doing well. Yeah, I've never read the Bible before so I just picked it up a few minutes ago and read that first part of Genesis. You know, about God creating everything and all that. That's pretty extreme. I like it though, man. I really do."

Note to self: Open your freaking eyes and realize that not everybody grew up with this stuff.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Someone asked me, so I'll ask you:

"What would it look like if all the churches in a one square mile area pooled all their resources together to change their communities instead of using them to convince people to come to their Sunday morning event?"

So many times we just fall into a rut of amnesia when it comes to why we do what we do.
At least I do.

Monday, October 11, 2010

I caught the glance of an old man sitting on a bench in Chattanooga.
On his head was a greased back do.
On his face was a white stache.
In his left hand were four bags from "where shopping is a pleasure."
In his right was a credit card being fiddled with.

His eyes told me to run.

"From what?"
"From this."
"What is 'this'?"
"Everything surrounding us right now. This stuff isn't worth it. Run to the mountains."

I don't know what they meant by that, but that's what the eyes said.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Creepy paper mache statues in Peru.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Have you ever noticed what it says in verse 21 of Exodus chapter 14?
There is a key phrase in there that changes my perspective of the whole parting-of-the-sea deal.
Two words back to back provide some insight into my thoughts on God's provision.

"All night."

It says that the east wind that parted the sea blew all night while a cloud separate the Egyptians and the Israelites. what?
That means that the Israelites sat there freaking out for an entire night surrounded by howling wind while the only thing separating them and an army bringing death was some fog and darkness.
They had to wait.

Maybe you already had this picture in your head, but I always thought of this story as a quick get-away.
And the problem with that is that life doesn't really have quick get-aways.
When you're afraid because tough stuff is going on it always takes a while to get back to a place of peace, and that while of waiting happens to be quite uncomfortable at times.

The question is will I wait in faith while God provides?

Also, another side thought:
Can you imagine the feeling in your soul as onlooking Moses in the moment of quiet between the sound of the rushing wind and the roaring waters?

Monday, September 27, 2010

The first photograph ever taken.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

"The Lord will fight for you, and you have only to be silent."
-Exodus 14:14

The Formula:
1. God takes care of it.
2. I shut my mouth.

Friday, September 24, 2010

What you really want is the answer to the question of what you'll really do.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Here is some more Merton.
I've decided to always listen to a monk.

"We are warmed by fire, not by the smoke of the fire.
We are carried over the sea by a ship, not by the wake of a ship.
So too, what we are is to be sought in the invisible depths of our own being, not in our outward reflection in our own acts.
We must find our real selves not in the froth stirred up by the impact of our being upon the beings around us, but in our own soul which is the principle of all our acts."

Monday, September 13, 2010

"You never know how malnourished your soul is until you really feed it."

I've noticed that I can coast in a decent attempt at living for quite some time.
We all can, really.
Some days will just go OK on their own without too much effort on our behalf.

However, I when I sat down this morning with some coffee and a sunrise I realized something...I hate coasting.

Coasting does one thing.
It gets you closer and closer to somewhere you don't want to be.
It's a mystery but a fact that you always end up somewhere, and our default destination is never our dream.

It's the "poof effect."
The blank stare after the "what did you do today" question.
The "holy junk it's already September" realization.
Do you have any idea how many things I planned to do or be before September that haven't been "done or been"?

When was the last time we really fed our souls?
How long have we been floating in our complacency?

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Adam, I am so proud of you.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

New band website:

Things are still being finalized.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Thoughts on tough times:

"The effect of suffering upon us depends on what we love.
In any case, if we love ourselves, suffering inexorably brings out selfishness, and then, after making known what we are, drives us to make ourselves even worse than we are.
If we love God and love others in him, we will be glad to let suffering destroy anything in us that God is pleased to let it destroy, because we know that all it destroys is unimportant."

"In order to face suffering in peace:
Suffer without imposing on others a theory of suffering, without weaving a new philosophy of life from your own material plan, without proclaiming yourself a martyr, without counting out the price of your courage, without disdaining sympathy and without seeking too much of it.
In order to give glory to God and overcome suffering with the charity of Christ:
Suffer without reflection, without hate, suffer with no hope of revenge or compensation, suffer without being impatient for the end of suffering."
--Thomas Merton

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Everyone loves music.

Headbands. Tonny was our connection with the wonderful church in Guatemala. He's my hero. Be praying for him, his wife, and his first baby boy that was born just days after we left.

Watching the game.

Calling out formations. They were so much better than me.

A day of new shoes and smiles.

Friday, August 27, 2010

A huge thank you to all who decided to "walk good" along side me in Guatemala.
You built churches, shared meals with those needing to be encouraged, delivered food to mountain dwelling communities, played soccer with kids longing for smiles and attention, buried Bibles (I'll explain later), led worship and devotionals, delivered shoes, led VBS, and were the literal hands and feet of Christ.
Also, you changed me. Thank you for providing the environment for new growth.

Throwing luggage on the van.

Starting the first wall.

Juandi getting beat up by Hervin.


Watching the ducks.

Val and the girls. One of my favorite parts of the trip was having the privilege of leading worship at the church with Valerie.

No skills.

Getting megged.

My best pal loving his new kicks.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Goodbye, Machu Picchu.
A great adventure.
The way to do it is the Inca Trail.
The hike leading up to the ruins adds so much to the viewing experience.
Next year...Bolivian jungle here we come.

Goodbye, hostel.
We were completely spent, but that is how we knew we did it right.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The first glance of the old Machu Picchu.

Directionally challenged.

Covered windows.

New life.


The temple.

The whole crew.

Really siked.

Spotty beard.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Johnny, Clemy, Ad, and I on the 68 terrace agricultural ruin.

Where's David? David was our guide on the trip.


Hiking pals.