December 24, 2006

I've been tagged!

I have been tagged by the whyman and so I will list off 5 things about me you probably do not know

~ I came out with an instrumental album (it came out yesterday so it's news)

~ During freshman year in high school I was hit by a car walking home. The car hit me and I flipped over the top, spun once or twice, landed straight on my back unhurt and the car crashed into a snowbank. No one was hurt in fact my friends started laughing at me soon after they saw I was OK.

~ I love all foods except, olives, grapes and cherry tomatoes. Must be the shape and size.

~ A year before we really met. I hung out for a few hours only a few feet away from Melissa (my wife) in a spot a few hundred miles away from where we live
(phew! that was a long sentence).... I have proof because it was video-taped!

~ When I was in third grade I was all into the "Where's Waldo?" books. In the third one you had to find waldo, the wizard and the scroll in each of the scenes.
It came to where I found everything except the scroll in the underwater scene.
I searched forever with no success until one night I was dreaming in my sleep and in my dream I actually found the scroll, it was on the ocean floor in the middle of the scene. As soon as I found it I awoke, hopped out of bed, flipped open the Where's Waldo book and it was in the exact same place that it was in my dream.

So there you go...

December 17, 2006

scratching the surface of real relationship

I've gotten along with people pretty well, I still do. All my life it seems like I'm always on good terms with everyone. I go out of my way a lot to make others happy not in such an obvious way that makes me not my own person but at the cost of really speaking my mind, seeking improvement within and around me, and really going after God with everything.
But in this past year God has been pushing me. I have said stuff and made decisions that I normally would not have before my 24th birthday. By his grace I still get along with people but now it's in a new way. I have really made priorities in my spirit with God being my first allegiance. This prioritizing, I believe, is the foundation of real relationship. But before I speak too soon I know I have only scratched the surface. God is very big.

December 11, 2006

syncretism ~ pros and cons

The subject of syncretism has been the concern of many christian's and for good reason. Still, I believe that if our hearts are right with God and if we honestly look at the world and all it's ways and philosophies discerningly we will find principles that we should run far away from but also some that we should strive to acquire ourselves.
In the story of the crooked manager (Luke 16), Jesus said "... streetwise people are smarter in this regard than law-abiding citizens. They are on constant alert, looking for angles, surviving by their wits. I want you to be smart in the same way-but for what is right-using every adversity to stimulate you to creative survival, to concentrate your attention on the bare essentials, so you'll live, really live, and not complacently just get by on good behavior." (the message).
The problem is not necessarily syncretism in the family of God but perhaps the fact that even though we may live according to good morals and correct theology or whatever (which is fine) , we sometimes do not fully see what God is showing us which may be something out of the box and we don't do what we already know to our full potential.
We each have our own personalities shaped by God partly through nature and nurture, and since it is ok to be nurtured who says we can't discerningly allow ourselves to be inspired by an unbeliever. When we compare the church today with the world in the arenas of science, art, music, politics, business etc... we do tend to get blown away. Praise God that his grace makes up for our shortcomings.
When the ways of the world are admirable, syncretism is ok. When the ways of the world are unrighteous, syncretism is bad. Most religions and philosophies have their own strengths and truths. We would do well to filter them out from what is false and make them ours. May the spirit of God give us discernment with this kind of stuff and the strength and courage to grow.

Phil Wyman on "Syncretism in the Evangelical Church: The Consumerism of the Altar Call and the Sinner's Prayer"Sally's Journey on "Time out from Tinsel"Matt Stone on Family ValuesSteve Hayes with an interesting turn about on where we find syncretism!Mike Crockett on Church and Culture: a double-edged swordCarl Nystedt on Syncretism: Pros and ConsBilly Calderwood - It's the Economy Stupid...John Smulo's BlogJohn Morehead's Musings

December 10, 2006

up a tree

24 hours ago, my cat isabel was chased up a tree by three dogs. Melissa and I watched as she climbed upwards for about sixty feet! We were nervous, we prayed and a half an hour later Isabel worked up the nerve to awkardly climb back down. She made it halfway doing all sorts of contortions and even jumping to another tree. At 25 feet she kind of slipped/jumped and landed with feet down and in perfect condition. Soon after she napped for a good six hours. She now has eight lives left. (hey, I just noticed that in every sentence there is a term of measurement, huh) .... life goes on.