Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Sin: Redefined
I was reading Velvet Elvis by Rob Bell yesterday and I came across this quote. Since I don't have the book in front of me here my paraphrase.

Your life's pursuit is to be the person God made you to be, anything that get's in the way of that is Sin, and you need to remove it.

What an interesting way viewing sin. Sin isn't just the moral problems I have. It isn't just the laziness in my spirituality. It isn't just anger and jealousy. Sin in my life is whatever I have in my life that causes me to seek to please other people. It causes me to be too busy. Sin is what makes me fake and inauthentic. This is just a refreshing way to think about it. What are your thoughts?

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Deeply Saddened

Yesterday I heard that Pat Robertson called for the assassination of Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez. That's right, a leader in Evangelical Christianity used his public forum to advise a practice that even our government staunchly condemns. The reason: Chavez hangs out with Fidel Castro and is a critic of Pres. Bush. I am sure that this guy is not a good man and I am not by any means a fan of communism.

And the name of Jesus is defamed. What ever happened to "Pray for your enemies"? How arrogant are we that we think that we can assassinate someone just because they criticize us. If we followed this logic we would have a lot of people to assassinate because many people in the world hate our guts.

What saddens me the most is that when asked to comment about Mr. Robertson's call for assassination, many leaders in the evangelical movement declined to comment. No one had the guts to stand up and say, "That is outrageous!" You wonder why Christians are looked down upon by non-believers.

I want to say publicly that the flippant throwing around of words like 'assassination' as a solution bring shame to the name of Christ. Jesus said to "put away the swords". The kingdom is brought upon by the transforming and renewing of our minds, not by force. Maybe someday, we'll figure out that our army and God's army are not the same thing.

Monday, August 22, 2005


Last night we had a Luau for the parents in our ministry. It was very casual. The point was to give our parents a chance to hang out with one another. I must say it was a success. We had a full pig smoked and tons of other goodies. I was amazed at how many parents showed up.
What I really loved about the evening was that our ministry was able to be a blessing to our parents. That is really important to me. Our ministry has seen a lot of growth since I have been here. I know that numbers aren't the be all and end all of what true ministry. I want to maintain a focus on quality relationships over worrying about growth or numbers.

As a young guy, I really have a hard time with parents. I love them and appreciate them, but I don't know how to minister to them. Who am I that I can tell them how to live with their kids? Last night was special to me because God showed me that He will work through me to make our ministry a family-friendly environment.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

In my mind, I'm already gone

So, I have been aching to go on some sort of vacation. So much so, that I have spent some significant time searching for beach destinations. I haven't been swimming in an ocean for a few years (not counting Galveston, that's not really a beach). My wife also haven't been away, just the two of us, since a year ago easter (San Antonio). The summer at the church was great, but I worked my big butt off. I would love to have a few days of R&R in a tropical-type setting. Besides, doesn't a guy who wears Hawaiian shirts need a beach every once in a while?

Monday, August 15, 2005

Manah Manah

Without much arm twisting I convinced my wife to let me buy The Muppet Show: Season One. We watched the show until about one in the morning. Man, what a great comedic genius Jim Henson was! Non only that, he had the ability to tell a great story through puppets. I think he is one person I would really have loved to get to know. Yeah, he was quite into the psychadelic drugs, but I am sure he would have been great to know.

Also, I didn't realize that the Muppets were around since the fifties. Anyways, I highly recommend the set for anyone who grew up loving Kermit and the gang.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Lovin' Summer
My first summer at TBC is nearing an end. What an amazing ride it has been. I can't help but think of all the cool things that have happened to us. First, I want to say that it has been an an overwhelming feeling to be welcomed into the high school group. Parents, students, church family, they have all been very kind to me these past few months. I can't express how much it means to me the patience that has been displayed towards me. There were many moments of confusion and chaos as I am still in the process of growing into this position.

Secondly, I have to say that I really love these students. They challenge me to live deeper and know more fully the grace of God in my life. I love their personalities and ache for them to live lives that are fully devoted to our Lord.

With that being said, I still feel like I have a lot of growth. I wish I had more things figured out and more time to do that figuring. I know God's grace is sufficient. Even when I doubt my abilities (which happens more than I like to admit), and when my creativity is dried up, glimpses of grace remind me of His might and His power and His perfect love.

Thanks to all listening. You have been a therapeutic salve on my sores.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Treasures of the past

A few nights ago the wifey and I, up to our ears in boxes, found some old CD's. She had unearthed a few Pearl Jam albums and we excitedly gave them a spin. Man, I forgot how great these albums are! What is cool is that all these memories flooded back into my brain about where I was in life when I first listened to the albums. I think the soundtrack of my life is a very eclectic one.

In my early years, I listened to a lot of oldies music (mostly because that is what my parents listened to). I went through a popular country phase in my late childhood (complete with the Garth Brooks-esque hat and boots). My teen years were saturated with Nirvana, Pearl Jam, STP and of course, tons and tons of SKA. Ska represented the happy, upbeat, optimistic teen years. Since then I have immersed myself in the deep soul of Johnny Cash, my my musical kindred. I also enjoy the harder stuff like Irish punk (Flogging Molly) and Linkin Park.

What is my current music saying about me? I enjoy lyrics with thought and depth, much like my conversations. I thrive in finding new metaphors to capture empotion and feelings. I love songs that tell a story, which is why I love Johnny Cash. Above all, I am not satisfied with simple catchy pop song that don't leave me hungry for more.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

So, we are completely moved into our house. Within three hours of having the boxes under our roof, three sets of students come by to hang out. Man, it was such a confirmation that we were doing the right thing. Over these past 10-12 months, we have been searching for God's leading into a new ministry and since coming to the new place, there has been confirmation after confirmation that we are where He wants us to be.

Our prayer is that our home will be a place where students are welcomed into our family. Where they will laugh, pray, sing, and even sometimes cry. That goes for all of you out there who stop by on occasion.