Monday, April 21, 2008

Thoughts from the other side of the hill

I did it, I survived my 20's. I want to take this time to say thank you to my 20's. We had some good times together didn't we. We laughed, we cried and then we got old. Not really. From what I hear 30 is the new 20. I know I already wrote about this a bit but since it finaly happened I am revisiting it. I can still confidently say that I am not too terribly fazed by the passing of my 20's, yet.

Some people look back and wonder what they have done with their lives and mourn the passing of the time. I look back and think, how the heck did I do all that in the last 30 years or even the last 10. The only sad thing to me is how fast it truly does go. It feels like time is standing behind me pushing me harder and harder towards the precipice. The reality is that it's just the way it is. I can't do anything about it so I better accept it. The consolation is that in the scheme of eternity I am still quite infantile. I am really not getting closer to death but rather closer to new life. It is hard to accept this concept sometimes in our fallen state. The frailty of life and shortness of life make me realize that it truly is not about me. If it were, it would be a pretty pathetic existence and very depressing. I don't want to mourn my own life especially while I am still living it. This life is not my own. It is a gift and it should be used to glorify the one who gave it to me. I think that when I start to get depressed about the loss of youth or days gone by I may be losing the proper perspective. I constantly struggle to let go of myself and be humbled. It is my nature to want to be in control but it is in my best interest to give up control. I believe true joy and peace in this life come when we give it up. When we give up ourselves to the one who is in control we get something far greater in return, we get hope. Hope for a better life to come. Hope that this world can be redeemed. Hope we will not only survive but be victorious. It is Christ's love that brings us this hope. The purpose of this life is to bring Christ's love and hope to bear on this world. That's what his kingdom is about.

So, as I enter a theoretical new phase of my life I will continue to pray that God will use my life to bring hope to the world through His love.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Out and About

It looks like it has been awhile since I wrote some words on this here little blog. Don't worry though, I have a great excuse. I've been working like a little monkey in a circus. We are on tour right now and sometimes that's just how it feels. We are doing 27 shows in 5 and a half weeks which means a lot of time away from home and not much sleep. We are barely a quarter of the way done and I'm tired. For this tour I am, as I have been before, the only tech person. This means that I get to wear a lot of different hats and try to make the show sound and look good at the same time. Fortunately the band guys have really stepped up and are pulling their weight. They are my crew and they are finaly getting things nailed down so that setting up and tearing down are much smoother. We are out with Shawn McDonald and our good friend Jason Gray. Shawn and his band are very kind and have been a lot of fun to get to know. The tour is gelling really well and the shows have been good. On this tour, like most we are on, we are focusing on World Vision child sponsorships. This has been going good too and many kids' lives are being changed every night. So, that's where I've been lately. I don't usually find myself with much time for writing or energy. We are working 18 hour days sometimes and the last thing I want to do is type. I will try though to offer some updates and tour tidbits. The hardest part of this tour, obviusly, is being away from my beautiful wife and daughter. Cali is growing so fast and I hate missing it. I do know that it is all part of God's plan though. I am really looking forward to tomorrow which is a day off at home. Praise the Lord.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

One for the little guys

I haven't seen this story too much in the press anywhere, and I probably never would have heard about it if I hadn't seen it live while randomly fliping through the channels. It's a good story of the big guy sticking up for the little guy. I have to take my hat off to the Boston Red Sox, not just becaue they are the world champions and a good baseball team but because they stood up for the right thing. Last week just before their last preseason game in Florida the team refused to take the field. They had been scheduled to play the game and then head to Japan, where they would play their first game of the season. The issue was that the players had an understanding that their coaches and staff would be paid extra for the trip just like the players were. However, the morning of the game in Florida they found out none of the staff and coaches were gettig paid, only the players were. The team could have easily not cared and not done anything about it and no one would ever have known. Instead , the team rallied to their extended family in support. The players recognized that it was unfair for their extended staff to not get paid when they have just as much to do with playing the games as the players do. So, the team refused to play or go to Japan until a deal was made. In the end the league paid half and the team paid half of the support staff's extra salary.

I think the fact that these players acknowledged how pivotal the role of these support people is was remarkable. I know from experience what goes on "behind the scenes", it definitely is a thankless job and one with little credit. There is so much work that goes into sports or entertainment, and the person on stage or the field is one part in making it happen. It is so easy to forget the others who work just as hard or harder to get it done. I work in a support role and I even forget the support people when I see a show or go to a game. It was nice to see the Red Sox give credit where it was due and take care of their extended "family". So maybe ball players aren't so selfish after all and maybe I'll have to become a Red Sox fan for real instead of just from afar. Here is a more detailed article.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

It's gettin hot in here

Global Warming, seriously? Last weekend, Nashville, which is in the South, got more snowfall than it has had in a decade. It has been one of the coldest winters here in a looong time. I wonder if my neighbor just a few miles north (Al the weatherman Gore) was able to use his solar panels when they were covered under 4 inches of snow in march? I have always been a big skeptic on the global warming issue mostly because it always seemed like it was just a great way to make a lot of money and gain political power. If you scare people and make them think the world is going to end unless they make these changes, then you can convince them to buy whatever "green" product you are selling. One of the most lucrative products in business right now is anything with "green" attached to it. Now, I'm all for taking care of the environment and more fuel efficient cars, but I think people are being manipulated into believing something that is just not entirely true, often for financial or poltical gain. I think in some ways the "green" bandwagon is good because new technologies are emerging. As a result, the environment, and more importantly mankind, will benefit from it. This, however, does not justify the actions of many who distort the truth and use fear tactics to get what they want. So just this past week I have come across several very intersesting articles. It appears I'm not the only one who feels this way anymore. Many reputable scientists are finally coming out against the theory of global warming. Here are some links to some interesting reading:

Global warming: Is it really a crisis?
Evidence of Global Cooling
The sun also sets

My neighbor Mr. Gore would have us believe that there is a consensus of scientists who support the theory of global warming, but in truth, there is no such consensus. In fact, it seems the consensus may be leaning the other way. This last article I will post I find somewhat amusing and a brilliant idea. It looks as though the founder of The Weather Channel, John Coleman, has had enough of Al the weatherman Gore and wants to openly debate him. Unfortunately, Al is not interested in debating. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that he would lose. If Al is shown to be a fraud his credibility would be completely shot and he might actually have to get a real job. So, Coleman's plan to get Al to debate? Sue him for fraud. If he sues Gore for fraud they will have to show all the evidence in a court of law and the facts on global warming will come to light. This could be very interesting. So stay tuned to see what happens. Hopefully we won't all melt or freeze before we find out. Here is the article:

Weather Channel founder sue Al Gore for Fraud

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Happy Birthday!

This last weekend Jess and I were able to enjoy an awsesome celebration. There was great music, flashing lights and confetti cannons. It was a birthday party that was a lot of fun and very emotional. It wasn't a party for a kid or one of our friends, it was for our beloved church. Fellowship Bible in Nashville, where we have been attending for about 4 and a half years now, just celebrated it's 10th birthday. The service was a celebration of where God had brought the church in the last 10 years and committing ourselves to where he was leading in the future. Fellowship started 10 years ago, like many new churches do, as a bible study with six couples in someones home. Those six founding couples are still members of the church and were able to get up and share their stories of what they have seen God do in His church. As I listened to these couples share I couldn't help but be filled with emotion and awe for what God has done. It's always great to hear prospective form the bigger picture. Sometimes we get so bogged down with the events of today and can't see or understand what the big picture looks like. When you have ten years to look back on it becomes a little more clear sometimes. For instance, after the six couples shared for a while another young couple came up to speak. They were from New York City and had moved to Nashville a couple years ago because of a jobh transfer. They had both grown up in fragmented homes with no Christian influence and lived life for themselves. When they moved to Nashville they somehow happened to come to Fellowship one sunday. They were surprised by the friendliness of the people as opposed to New York and ended up coming back again. Eventually they gave their lives to Christ and have become radically changed. After they shared their story they turned to those original six couples and thanked them for being faithful and obedient to God's call to start this church. There is a direct correlation between their faithfullness and lives being changed eternally. This of course was extremely inspiring and moving and as the congegation stood to it's feet to applaud the six couples were moved to tears. You could tell they were moved not because of what they had done but because of what God had done through them in spite of them.

I am very thankful to be a part of my church and praise God for ten years and look forward to many more. I also know that my church is not unique. God's church is alive and well all over the world. A great moment on Sunday was in a video they showed where many local pastors and pastors from churches around the world that fellowship partners with gave their congratulations. It was great to see harmony in the body instead of discord which we see far too much of. I think sometimes churches see each other as individual teams competing each other to be the best and biggest. That's just ridiculous because we are all on the same team. We don't always agree on everything but as long as we have the same focus and same hope in Christ, we are one. I hope to see more unity in the future but more importantly a deeper focus on what is most important and that is Jesus.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Freak of Nature Marathoner

Ok, If anyone needs any inspiration to get off your butt and excercise a little or to even attempt a marathon check this out. After reading this article on Bustere Martin I really have no excuses. Not only does he work at a labor intensive job like plumbing but he is also training for the London marathon in his "spare time". Oh, did I mention he is a spry 101 years old! When Buster completes the marathon in April he wants to celebrate the way everyone who is exhausted and out of breath after a marathon does, by drinking a beer and smoking a cigarette. Is this guy for real? Well, my hats off to you Buster and I hope you do get to enjoy that beer and cigarette but somedoy should really tell him smoking could kill him.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Act Now

Here's an unusual story for ya. It looks like their has been a huge increase in theatrical productions and people claiming to be actors in Minnesota this week. Why, you ask? Well that's simple, it's smoking. Uh, what? Yeah, smoking. The deal is that Minnesota just passed a law to ban smoking in all restaurants and nightspots. However, for some brilliant reason, they left in a loophole that made an exception for performers in theatrical productions. So, what would you do if you were addicted to nicotine and Minnesota nightlife? Well you become a thespian that's what. Bars all over Minnesota have christened themselves new playhouses and everyone inside is the star of the show. What's on the playbill? It's life in the bar, pre smoking ban. The smokers are "actors" playing themselves as they were before the ban. As funny as this light hearted rebellion is, these "actors" will have to look elsewhere to continue their "roles" soon because the government is not impressed with their performance. They are quickly trying to tighten up this ridiculous loophole and crackdown on these pseudo productions. I'm sure these smokers want the "show" to go on as long as possible but it won't be long until it's curtains.

Here is the full article on