September 24, 2007


Fall is my favorite season. Halloween is my least favorite holiday. I do not dig the costumes, the bizarres, the haunted happenings and halloween in general. The city becomes congested with people during the month of october causing traffic. I am the Ebenezer Scrooge of halloween. I would prefer to escape up north for the month of October and come back down November 1st. A lot of people who grew up in Salem as I have would agree with me. This year I am going up north to Portland Maine for a weekend but other than that I will be home. This is my annual default reaction to the coming holiday. I am then reminded in thought and prayer what Christ's attitude would be. Would his initial reaction be to escape? I would say no. It is interesting to see different christ followers reaction to halloween as well. Some are kind and gentle, some are militant. Some are silent, some soft spoken and some have megaphones.

For years, I would spend the evenings inside a church praying that God's Spirit would be the spirit that guides and protects the town and all that inhabit it, than later spend some time hanging out with friends. This was, and is good. More prayer is needed as more people arrive in Salem. The more the people the more the opportunities for good and evil to happen. The intercessions I offered up to God many times turned into the kind of prayer that would change me instead of those around me.

Ever since the Gathering set up stage with music and free hot cocoa and other happenings it has been easier for me to not only deal with october but actually enjoy it. There are many reasons for this and perhaps another post will explain.

September 12, 2007

In memory of Michael Jackson

No. Not Jackson Five's Michael Jackson. The world famous beer expert died late last month. If it wasn't for this guy all of America would just be drinking those less than desirable light beers(you know which ones I'm talking about). There will be an official toast on September 30th in his memory. Hopefully my next post will not be about death.

September 11, 2007

Tragedies of yesterday, tragedies of today

I once worked with a compulsive liar. He had his stories. From being forced to leave the casino in Las Vegas because he was about to defeat Donald Trump in poker for a lot of money to his attempt in becoming an army chaplain by undergoing the proper education where he learned that there were up to seven names of God in the bible (Yahweh, God, Allah, blah, blah, blah) and there were many more. I remember one morning as I walked past him to punch in he blurted out right away not a "good morning Carl" but rather "Did you just hear? A plane crashed into the world trade center". My first thought was "Yeah right". But then I listened to the radio that he was pointing at.

The rest of the day was eerily quiet. I continued through the work day in a solemn attitude. I remember as I walked through downtown Salem on my lunch break as was my custom when our company was located there. It was like a ghost town. I shuffled over in front of the widescreen TV that was displayed in front of a financing company. It was either CSPAN or CNN being showed with news of the terror attacks. Another man came next to me to watch as well. He was what seemed like a wealthy business man. Pictures of smoke were all we could see, lots and lots of smoke along with a couple shots of people covered from head to toe in dust. After a minute or so we both silently parted our own ways.

Today it is six years from that awful day and another sad one has happened. A friend of mine had his funeral. He battled pancreatic cancer. He was a desert storm veteran, a bass player and even though I did not know him too well he was genuinely kind. Two years ago I did not personally know anyone that has passed on from this life except for my Grandpa. Today three stand out in my mind. One was in his fourties, one was in his thirties and one was in his twenties. Horrible. But when I think of them all I cannot get there smiles out of my head(which is a good thing).

May Jesus carry us.