Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Frankenstein!

Last night I was moving my truck. Living downtown I have the great honor of worrying about the parking meter lady giving me a ticket if my car is not moved off the street by 8am. And since I’m no morning person I move it at night to the parking garage to avoid the beautiful sight of a pink ticket on my windshield. I’m listening to this Christian radio show and hear this lady on the phone weeping. She says that she and her husband were fighting and that she was just praying that God would comfort her. She said she was reading Proverbs 14 and 15 and felt like God was in the room with her, comforting her. Have you ever had one of these experiences? The reason I study my bible in my apartment and not at the coffee shop like so many other cool people is because I have had several of these experiences. You know, you are reading something and it’s as if the page came alive and smacked you in the mouth (or jumped on you like a spider monkey jacked up on Mountain Dew!). I’ve been reading and learned something or the Word became real to me and I actually let out a squeal of excitement, I’ve danced, I’ve just given praise aloud to God, and several other things that would make me look like a freak at Starbucks, so I stay at home. I wrote in my last post about how seeking the kingdom first and letting all other things come and not worrying about tomorrow has helped me get through my frustrations with dating. Matthew 6:33-34 became real to me. We can read the bible year after year and we will always have new verses that jump out at us, speak to us, change us, they come alive!

“For the Word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart (Hebrews 4:12).” I know that it’s alive because the Holy Spirit resides in the Word itself. The Spirit then touches us with the Word and it begins to change us, affect the world around us, affect people, which then read the Word and are changed, then they influence the world and so on and so forth. Kind of looks like exponential growth. So the word is made alive in us because it changes things outside of a 2 dimensional dual toned NIV bible. It touches and changes humanity and humanity, influenced by His Word changes the world.

John starts his gospel with, “the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning (John 1-2).”. He continues in verse 14, “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” Jesus was and is the Word, He lived among us.

With Halloween in the air I can just see it, Jesus amongst us, seeing all the Word has done and is doing, rubbing his hand together saying, “It’s alive, It’s alive!” Much like Frankenstein, His creation, is finally alive when we are touched by His Word.

Holy Apathy!

Is that an oxymoron? Can we be apathetic in a holy way? As of recent my dating life has taken a wild turn and after almost a year of singleness and little to no interest in dating I feel I might be ready. With that comes this though. And by this I mean the confusion, hidden messages, frustration, selfishness, etc. Within the last couple of weeks I’ve seen so much of the dating world I have been missing out of the last year that I’ve become apathetic. Within this apathy I have really sought out the Lord for His guidance, because without it I just roam around lost looking for things I shouldn’t. I make the girls at work laugh because when they ask about my dating life I make the action of shaking dust from my feet, dust off my hands, and turn around. I’m over it. And not in a sick, bitter, insecure way, but within the last two days I’m over it, within me…I feel a little bit of resolution actually. So my apathetic response has made me think of the term Holy Apathy. Is it possible to be so focused on God that you become apathetic to things He is drawing you away from? Not to say I’m some holy roller though. I am still the biggest screw up ever, I’m sure. However, because I have become so aloof with the dating scene I have found myself running in to the Word when I start thinking about it. In Matthew Jesus tells the disciples to seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you and do not worry about tomorrow (Matthew 6:33-34). These words have become real to me, they have changed the way I think and as of late, they are exactly what I need.

So I’m done with skirts for now…I’m chasing Christ…Maybe along the way I’ll trip[ and fall and happen to meet “her”, but for now, I’m content with my chase of Christ and feel really good about it.

It’s funny how I was so excited at the possibility of dating three weeks ago, but am now apathetic. Holy Apathy!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Random Pictures






















So since I was talking about my photo album, here is some pictures of me up here in Indy. For those you you who haven't seen me in a while, not much has changed...

Jobs/Career

I received my letter back from the Police Department up here. They basically said thanks for your time, but we are not interested (in a lot of other words that took up an entire page of paper). I just wanted to keep you updated on that process.

The Fire Department stopped their process due to some political things happening in the city, but will be sending letters out for the physical test and second oral interview sometime soon.

I’ve come to realize though, that I have no career goals in any way and that I’m apathetic towards this whole Fire/Police Department deal. This is not to say I am not goal oriented or have no future plans though. My main goal in life is to be following Christ, I feel like I am lead by Him to start churches or be an integral part of a pasturing team to help reach urban cities. So my goal is very vague, but so clear as well. It is vague in the sense of I cannot say for sure what will happen in 5 years or where I will be, it is clear because I know that the Holy Spirit will guide me and provide for me what I need.

I am reading this book by Erwin McManus called Soul Cravings and one of the main thoughts he brings to light is that we often do not pursue our dreams because we have fear. Fear in itself is form of not trusting the Lord fully. So one thing I have been thinking about (more than praying, which is a problem in itself, but I need to pray about it more) is trying to raise financial support to be able to not work and help with Indy Metro Church and whatever other church in the future full time. I’m not sure why I don’t just put together a letter a start sending it out, but I need to pray that I would start this process in anticipation of being done with school. When I finish with college I have no idea what I am going to do because there is nothing holding me hostage in Indianapolis. I don’t feel strongly about leaving or staying, it’s almost like I’m in this stage of transition in preparation for something big. Whatever that is I have no idea, but pray that I am ready.

Please join my in prayer about the possibility of doing full time ministry and becoming fully funded by churches and/or fellow brothers or sisters. I want to do so much for the Lord and be used in huge ways, but it makes it hard to do if I am scared to go…

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Falling to pieces

I am a blog freak and I am always on Boundless Line’s website writing and reading about different things. This one blog in particular really bothered me, when I say bother I mean almost like convicted, but I just thought I should share. Here is the link to the blog http://www.boundlessline.org/2007/10/ordinary-men.html and within the blog there is another link which is the following http://www.ushmm.org/research/collections/highlights/auschwitz/auschwitz_album/ this link is for the photos album you should go look at.

Now to the meat of things... in this blog the author wonders how in the world all those Nazi soldiers could have such normal looking pictures in that album when they were part of destroying lives and making history with their death camps. He wonders how they could just go back to their family vacation spots as seen in the pictures or even more sad light a Christmas tree (which would signify them celebrating Jesus Christ) while during the day they were slaying millions of Jews.

The chills came from me thinking about my facebook wall and the large amount of pictures of me having fun and just being “normal”. This in no way is to say I or anyone else for that matter should not have fun, but it is only to bring about acknowledgement of the world around us. I wonder if someone will look at my photo gallery one day and wonder how in the world I looked so happy when women in Iraq were having to prostitute themselves to survive, babies were being killed in America at a breath-taking rate, religions were killing each other, and the world around us was falling to pieces as we sit in our comfy homes and play and take pretty pictures.

I refuse to be a part of the generation that sits back and is ignorant of the stench of death that surrounds us. I fear being ignorant of the world around me and the horrors that go on in this world, and dedicate my life to the service of Jesus Christ to help change it and see people come to know Jesus Christ and experience life abundantly (which doesn’t mean I think this world will turn to candy land, that will not happen until he comes back). This blog challenged me to always be aware, always pray, and always be active. What about you…

Sad Song to Sing

“All religions use different methods and different ways of approach. But they have the same end.” Dalai Lama

This is a quote from the Dalai Lama, the leader of the Buddhist religion. This statement stopped me in my reading of the news this morning with sheer sadness. That is a sad song to sing and to think, all religions have the same end. I wonder how many people around the world think this very thing. I used to believe in what you would call universalism. I believed as long as you believed in something it all meant the same and that all God were the same but just called something different. This is really not a new idea though. Throughout history there have been many religions who have no idea about god, but think that as long as they worship something they will be okay. Baal and then all the god’s in Athens. In fact in Acts 17 Paul found a statue to an unknown God.

The reality of things is that there is only one way and we must be able to loving tell the rest of the world that this universalism is a false thought and Jesus Christ is the only way to have a relationship with the creator of everything they love and know. Jesus said it Himself, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me (John 14:6).”

Bond

Bond

Not James Bond…a brotherly bond. My brother came up to Indianapolis for my birthday last week. He got here on Wed (10/17) night and left on Sat (10/20) night. We just hung out a lot, nothing really big, but just a great time. The entire time he was here I was just shocked at the bond that we had because we were brothers. Even though we disagree about things and had a couple little disagreements when he was here, that never broke our bond. There is something unexplainable about the bond between two brothers, no matter what, they will always be brothers and that is enough to make them best friends for life.

Carrying that thought into the church is a little bit more difficult though. What my brother and I have in common is a mother and a father. As Christians, followers of Christ, we all have in common that we have been extended grace and are now children of God. For some reason though, the bond I feel with my brother is different than I do with Joe, the guy who sits in the third row every Sunday (that is just a made up name, and we don’t have pews, we have tables and chairs). I think having the same Father is a huge deal and should be enough to make the unity within the body of Christ much like that of my brother and I.

It’s the little things that make a difference I think. My brother and I experienced the same kind of life growing up together, even though we are totally different in many ways. So the body of Christ is made up of a large number of different people, from different places at different times. The only reason this seems to matter is because we are sinful and look more at differences than alikeness.

Just a random thought to chew on, I’ve been wrestling with it all morning.

God’s Practical Joke

God’s Practical Joke

Being a young single man, I often wonder if this whole dating thing is punishment or some kind of practical joke from God. I say this in jest of course, because I don’t think God would ever play a practical joke. I am enamored by this awkward process though.

Boy meets girl, boy pursues girl, boy tells girl he is interested, girl backs off, girl acts like she is not interested, boy gets feelings hurt, boy’s head is filled with thoughts, communication between boy and girl is now in secretive messages of body language, how they interact in groups, and weird phone conversations.

Why sit that a man cannot just be interested in a woman? I’d love to think that I can just lay all my cards on the table and say, “Look, woman, I’m interested and I think you should let me start dating you if the feelings are mutual.” Then if there are any thoughts from either side, they should be able to freely express them, with no pressure or expectations. I think we make this dating process all to personal. It is not to my fault that I am interested in a girl. It is not a bad thing if for some reason she is not interested in me though either. Because we care so much about what people think and we put ourselves on pedestals to think that if we are not interested in a person we will hurt their feelings, we make this process of dating painful and horribly unpleasant. Then because it is unpleasant you withdrawal and begin to become bitter at the opposite sex for a while… I hate the dating process because of this, but do have the desire to get married…

I think something that would help in his process, is if we all went into with humility. Don’t flatter yourself ladies, just because you are not interested in a guy, doesn’t mean the end of the world, there are plenty of other women out there. Gentlemen, don’t become proud and think that you have the best total package to offer. If you like a girl don’t fear rejection because you don’t think you should be rejected. You see, none of it is personal, we are all just people stumbling through this world looking for a companion, and much like shopping for a new pair of jeans it’s okay to put back the one’s you don’t like or that don’t fit, nothing personal at all.

I’d say open communication and humility are the keys to success in any dating relationship.

So for those of you out there in my boat of frustration, keep your head up and pray that God would give you the desire of your heart in His timing and pray that He would grant you patience to wait.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Slacka Indeed

I was told by a good friend the other day, “You need to update your blog slacka!” So here it is the update you have all been waiting for…

***DRUM ROLL***

I had my interview with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department last Thursday. I took a risk in answering one of the questions by mentioning that my faith is what would make me a good police officer because I know true justice and I also know grace. I must have made some kind of impression because after the interview one of the officers came in the room and must have not seen me because she said, “My guy actually mentioned grace in the interview.’ So I was told I will get a letter in the mail in 2 weeks with a conditional offer of employment or a rejection, so now I get to play the waiting game. However exciting as that is, it seems like God is always there to stop my impulsive thoughts. Today at work I get this new guy who sits with me to listen in on how the job goes. Well, he actually just quite the police department. He just got out of the academy. Anyways he told me all kind of things and brought up points that I didn’t even think about. One, my heart not being in it, the police dept. would be great but I’m only interested because it is a large salary to start. He says that when you actually go out and see stuff and then you get into an altercation you start to think if this is really all worth it. So I’m beginning to think that I need to not just do what I want to do and really spend some more time in prayer about this potential opportunity, because my heart still lies in starting churches and preaching, you know changing lives for Jesus.

I went bike riding with my little brother, Tank, yesterday. I picked him up around 945 and took him to church, then we ate lunch, and went bike riding. I got my first feeling of what being a dad must feel like. As I was riding my bike towards the canal I was so worried about him getting hit or falling into the road and was constantly telling him to be careful and blah blah. Well, he fell into the road and I freaked, I jumped off my bike and snatched him up pretty quick. It scared the life out of me. So the rest of the bike ride I made him ride beside me on the opposite side of the road. He is a cool kid, I pray God will continue to use me in his life and that others will sign up to mentor kids in the city too.
School is going pretty good. I’m a little discouraged right now though. I got my first B on anything last week. I got a B on a paper because my answers were really short and did not really illustrate I had a true understanding of the material being taught I guess. Oh well, I’m back on the grind this week and plan to study hard this week and get 2 of my four final papers that are due written. Sometimes I forget I’m in school because I actually enjoy what I am doing. I still have to force myself to slow down and read and study though, but that is more of my lack of disciple than anything. I’m just bad at slowing down; I like to fill my life and day up so full that I wear myself out. Pretty bad characteristic of me but God is continuing to change me.

I’m at work right now writing so I think this is it for now. I don’t have any cool pictures or anything to post, but my brother, Chris is coming up for my birthday and I’m sure we’ll take some pictures that I can post.