Friday, October 26, 2007

Simply Simpatico

Oh lord, when something like this gets started it is tough to reign in.

When I was a kid we used to play dogpile. Who ever picked up the foot ball, the entire neighbor hood would tackle him and pile on.

This is happening today, and it is like a demented freight train, half derailed, and half still moving forward until it all collapses on one Bobby Caina Calvan. Bobby is a reporter for the Sacremento Bee who recently found himself in Iraq, after today he probably wishes Al Queda had kidnapped him.

You must read Bobby's blog entry, and then the comments before it was shut down.

Two warnings,

One, the blog entry is disgusting enough as it is but nothing offensive other than Mr. Calvan's boorish behavior.

Two, some of the comments to his blog post are vulgar so forwarned is forearmed. You adults out there should read it no matter what, rarely do we ever get to see a meltdown of these proportions.

I'll spruce this post later, for now enjoy. Simpatico, Bobby Caina Calvan.


Saturday, October 13, 2007

Michael Card Lecture

A few weeks ago our Foundations for Christian Ministy class was fortunate to have Michael Card Come and speak to us.

Michael Card is one of the pioneers of Christian music. He wrote the song El-Shaddai and Emmanuel. His career spans over twenty years, and he has authored fourteen books.

The following is my report on his visit.

Day 1

I thoroughly enjoyed the time Michael Card spent with us. His music in chapel was wonderful, thoughtful and poetic. Each song opened my eyes to a new way of thinking.

The lecture time with Mr. Card simply put, awesome! The diagram of Philippians 2: 6-11 again opened my eyes to new ways of thinking. In Christian and secular recovery the context of radical reversal is “you have to surrender to win”. Secular recovery means surrendering to the program. Christian 12 step, surrender to Christ. Men can’t seem to get over the surrender part. They have been told for years surrender is disgraceful.

These are my favorite radical reversals, Servant/Lordship, Exaltation/Humility and obedience. (Funny, that’s all of them) Let’s not forget obedience. He spoke of how Jesus was a true revolutionary redefining everything. His teaching was so against the culture of that time.

Michael humanized the New Testament for me, telling us about Jesus’ cooking skills for the disciples. He called out the “take up your mat and walk guy” by showing us the whiny fool he really was. The blind man whose sight was restored by Jesus really made the Sanhedrin look foolish.

He wrapped it up with humility, you aren’t your gift. What a trap the devil sets for us. We start to believe our own press. We become arrogant and foolish. Jesus met people where they were. If all you can see is yourself you can’t do this.

Day 2 Laments

All of the “wisdom” books of the bible seemed to be searching for someone. For all of Solomon and Job’s knowledge they knew something was missing. Isaiah was shown the “suffering servant” but the “go between” (Christ) would not appear for many years.

Michael also spoke of everybody having laments.

Another radical reversal, only when broken are we made whole.

Theodicy focused my attention as well. I have always heard that argument, If God is love how come there is suffering in the world? We live in a sinful world, unperfected. However Jesus is the world’s suffering, he is in Darfur, concentration camps, my life. We have to take up our cross and follow Him.

Mr. Card really focused a lot of loose ends for me. I have always seen bits and pieces of what he talked about in my mind. I have never been able to connect the dots. I am very blessed to have learned from this man. I will be reading his books, and listening to his albums. I hope he comes back again and again.


Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Future Shock

Since beginning school I have been exposed to new ideas, new concepts.
When I arrived at LeTourneau my mind was set on what I wanted to do when I graduated.
We are now at midterms and my mission seemingly has transformed.
I am no longer sure if being a Celebrate Recovery pastor is the future.
There, I said it. Its out there in the open. Have I grown past it, or does God want me on a different track?
I have two choices right now.
One, to participate in a CR step study at my new church, with the ultimate goal of beginning a new Celebrate Recovery at the church. Safe, comfortable, been there done that. When I first arrived here it is what I wanted. (notice how I said "what I wanted."
Two, there a huge number of witnessing type things offered by LeTourneau student missions. On of them is to a halfway house for men in recovery. This is an actual go to em and spread the Gospel. I have always wanted to do it, but have always been tentative, like a puppy going through a semi-open door.
I won't have time for both, school and work overwhelm me as it is. So, I have a decision to make, safe and comfortable in my lazy boy, or taking the plunge out of my zone.
Praying will help stimulate my decision. Pray for me to gain the wisdom of what to do.
I know what I want, I need to make sure it is what He wants.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Making Sense

Our world is senseless.

Events occur we'll never understand.

I went to school with a guy named Len Gustafson whom I didn't know very well.

His mother was one of my my teachers.

Last week he was killed by a drunk driver in a horrible car accident, leaving behind a wife and two children.

They interviewed his family on the news and it broke my heart to see their grief. I can only guess the agony Len's wife and children must be going through.

Please pray for Len's family. Pray also for his friends.


Sunday, October 7, 2007

Psalm 13

How long, O Lord? Will you forget me, forever?
How long will You hide Your face from me?
How Long must I wrestle with my

And everyday have sorrow in my heart?
How long will my enemy triumph over me?
Look on me and answer, O Lord, my God.

Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep in death;
my enemy will say, "I have overcome him,"
and my foes will rejoice when I fall.
But I trust in Your unfailing love;
my heart rejoices in Your salvation.
I will sing to the Lord, for he has been good to me.

Another one of those "here is where I am today."

Hmm, I caught the slide this time. I cannot do this on my own. I can't do it at all.

Only Him.


Saturday, October 6, 2007

Christians and Politics

What place do Christians have in politics?

Is it something we should even mess with? As I grow closer in my walk with God, and learning more about Jesus I am inclined to view the world differently. I am forced to take a second look to ideals I have held for years. I have viewed the world with a conservitive lens for as long as I can remember.

In high school we had representatives of the Republican and Democratic parties visit our economics class. I grilled the heck out of the Democrat. How can you be for abortion? How can you be against SDI, the strategic defense initiative, otherwise know as star wars? My parents affected me sure, but most of my values are common sense to me.

How do Christian values play out in all of this?

I believe homosexuality is a sin, it's wrong. Why however, are certain groups wasting all this time and money to battle the "gay" agenda? Who is witnessing and showing them God's love? When I came back to Christ I had a major past to get over. When I honestly repented the holy spirit began the sanctification process. God won't work that way with gays? Why send missions to Africa, how about San Francisco? Is sodomy worse than the preacher having an affair with the church secretary?

Jesus preached to the poor and the despised. What about illegal aliens swarming over the border? Who is witnessing to them?

What about athiests and the left? Why are we debating and fighting? Who is praying and witnessing to them? A lot of athiests and agnostics went to churches where the pastor was sleeping with the church secretary. Who is showing them the real love of Christ?

Where are todays Peter's and Paul's?

What ever happened to hate the sin love the sinner? Pray for our enemies? The great commandment?

Just some stuff rattling around in my head.



Monday, October 1, 2007

School Writings

Every so often I would like to share writing I've been doing at school.

Constructive criticism would be nice, no tomatos.

This is the LeTourneau clock tower it lies in the middle of the campus.
This paragraph is from a descriptive writing assignment.
You have to imagine a sunny but cool autumn breezy day.
This is the only picture I could find of the tower. I wahooed it from a fellow student.

The Bench

I sat upon a bench by the clock tower. Shadows and light danced through the waving trees throwing their reflection on the ground and sidewalk. The color of the brick flickered as the sun shone. Golden, then red, golden, then maroon the hues changing with the wind. The breeze caressing my hands and neck giving me a quiet but exhilarating chill as the sun shone on my face like a warm heating pad. I forgot about my stuffy nose, the white droppings of the birds on the tower bells and my achy body. Everything came together in that moment and I was still and knew God.
A bit cheesy perhaps but my first foray into this type of writing.

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