Friday, November 30, 2007

Writing

i actually like to write. it's just the getting started that is the hard part. i have a paper to write for a class. it's due wednesday and i have to do a 10 minute presentation on the material. they say the #1 fear of most people is public speaking. i actually don't mind it at all. maybe i just like the sound of my own voice (it is sexy). i have done the research for the paper, but i am completely putting off writing it (i am sitting at Panera now under the guise of writing said paper, but i am writing here instead). once i get going, i will really enjoy writing it.

it started me thinking about writing before computers, word processors, and typewriters. i remember not having a computer in high school and having to go to my mom's office to use her typewriter. i did this through my 2nd year of college when i finally bought a computer. it's crazy to think about the amazing works of literature, science, theology, etc. that were written by hand. the time it must have taken! these men and women must really have believed in what they were writing (or been getting paid serious cash to do it). i hope i can say the same for the words i take the time to put on paper. (especially the cash part!)

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

the fam damily

So I really want to be regular in this whole "blog" thing, but I went out of town for Thanksgiving and just got back into the office (yes, the one I'll be leaving in a few weeks).

My wife and I drove from Jacksonville to Cincinnati to spend the weekend (like 4 days really) with my family. Her parents moved to Durango, CO (and go to church here) 2 years ago, so we don't get to see them as much. On Wednesday, we packed up and left for Cincy (home of the Bengals!!). This year we decided to stay in a hotel instead of staying with my parents or my sister. What a great choice!! To have that small sanctuary at night made the whole difference. Not that I don't love being with my family, it's just that when you try to put a whole year of not seeing each other into 4 days, it can get overwhelming and to be able to go somewhere else at night and rest really does make the time with each other better.

It got me to thinking about Sabbath. It's one of the commandments to remember the Sabbath and make it holy. But why? Mark Driscoll did a great sermon on the Sabbath not too long ago that you should check out. The point was that we were created to be able to work harder and better when we take regular rest. I have started to call this (and I'm sure I stole this from somewhere) "Work Hard, Rest Hard". If you work too hard, you are a workaholic and will burn out (and burn out those around you). If you rest too hard, you are lazy and you disappoint the people who count on you. It's the combination and the balance of the two that allow us to do the most, with the best results. Being able to leave my family at night and rest allowed my wife and I to be more "present" when with them during the day and evenings. It made for a great trip, and I hope the more I learn this lesson it can translate into a better life.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Change #2


One of my favorite ministry experiences actually came as a volunteer. I was a part of getting Young Life started in Northern Kentucky (right across the Ohio River from Cincinnati). The Area Director sent me to a school that had never had this ministry before. Beechwood High School (go tigers!). A small school with a huge football program (I think they've lost count of the number of state championships they've won). I walked into this school cold. It was a year before I met a kid who would actually talk to me. This kid brought his friends around and soon we were taking folks to camp and running weekly club and campaigners. Things grew fast and it was awesome. I became extremely close to a group of guys. They were Juniors and Seniors and primed to change their school (which they did... if anyone from Beechwood reads this and is thankful for YL being at their school, you need to call some of these guys and thank them). Well, those high school guys are now 27 and 28 years old and have kids. It makes me feel old when some one I "ministered" to now has a baby, or a house, or a wife, or (insert anything else grown up here). One of these guys just had a kid and named him Spike. Seriously, Spike. Now, if you knew this guy, you wouldn't be surprised (and hopefully many of you will know him someday when his films become critically and financially successful). I don't want to get all "Lion King" on you but it really is a circle. We have impact on others, who have impact on others, who have impact on others, etc. My friend is now working for one of the guys who had a huge impact in my life. It's funny to think that my friend would never be working for this mentor of mine if it hadn't been for the mentor himself. Things change, things grow, things become different, but we are a catalyst for that change. Change doesn't just "happen" to us.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Change


Change is more than for toll booths. Change is good. Change is scary. I have started this blog to chronicle the changes happening in my life. After doing youth ministry for nearly 14 years (7 as a volunteer and 7 as full-time), I have decided to go back to school to further my studies in History. What i end up doing when this process is over is still very much up in the air. Will I teach? Will I pursue even further degrees? Will i go to seminary and re-enter full-time ministry? I don't know the answers to these questions. They are a few of many questions of which I don't have answers. I am not writing on this blog because I have answers. I write because I have ideas. If left to my own ideas, I can get pretty prideful and think that I have answers. I am hoping that people will challenge me here, push me to think. I firmly believe in some things and I hope I can share them with love and respect. I have come to respect the blending of the past and the future (trying our best to not lose the beauty in either) and I will focus much of what I write on that subject. I hope to debate, discuss, and befriend people here so please join me for the ride.