Friday, October 31, 2008

How to Survive Halloween

#1 Have children old enough to take care of the majority of their costumes themselves.

#2 Buy candy that you do not want to eat.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Bloated Thighs

My thirteen year old takes choosing and building a costume very seriously. As in "drive everyone around you up the wall" seriously. This year he has chosen "hippie" as his costume. Today he tried on what he had pulled together and decided that it looked too "Johnny Depp piratety".

Back to the drawing board.

I grabbed some things from my closet. I know, it's scary. He took them upstairs to mix with his stash (and by that I mean wardrobe pieces). Down the stairs he came stating that his thighs looked bloated. Apparently the shorts under the baggie linen pants made his thighs looked bloated. Wow! That's not something I would have ever dreamed of hearing my son say.

But, the ensemble worked. He looked full fledged hippyish.
Do his thighs looked bloated to you?

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

My Son is Weird

"I don't like the smell of paper after it has been in the freezer."


Friday, October 24, 2008

I know I'm way behind, but...

I came across this today (yes, it was written 7 years ago and I'm just now getting to it). A friend of mine has encouraged me to learn more about Wayne Jacobsen's views. So, today my journey begins. Below is a quote from BodyLife - May 2001.

I'm tired of trying to fellowship with people who only view church as a two-hour a week dumping ground for guilt while they live the rest of the week with the same priorities as the world. I'm tired of those who depend on their own works of righteousness but who have no compassion for the people of the world. I'm tired of insecure people using the Body of Christ as an extension of their own ego and will manipulate it to satisfy their own needs. I'm tired of sermons more filled with the bondage of religion than the freedom of God's love and where relationships take a back seat to the demands of an efficient institution.
Someone was complaining recently about their "church" not having a Sunday night service that week. I suggested the idea that it wasn't commanded in the Bible that there be a Sunday night service (or any service for that matter, but I didn't dare go there) and the reply was that it says not to forsake the assembling of the saints which meant they must have a Sunday night service.


Sometimes it's just easier to walk away.

Isaiah 1
"When you come before Me,
who every gave you the idea of acting like this,
Running here and there, doing this and that --
all this sheer commotion in the place provided for worship?
Quit your worship charades.
I can't stand your trivial religious games:
Monthly conferences, weekly Sabbaths, special meetings --
meetings, meetings, meetings, -- I can't stand one more!
Meetings for this, meetings for that. I hate them!
You've worn Me out!
I'm sick of your religion, religion, religion,
while you go right on sinning."

and skipping to the end of the chapter:

"Say no to wrong.
Learn to do good.
Work for justice.
Help the down-and-out.
Stand up for the homeless.
Go to bat for the defenseless."
The Message//Remix - Eugene H. Peterson

Please note the "while you go right on sinning." It's probably there for a reason.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Bleach, Vacuums, Comfort Zones

Last week there was a new kitchen crew at the Union Gospel Mission. They were doing things a little different than the guys we've worked for in the past. The trays were pretty much done when chapel was over so Phil and I helped get them to the tables. That way, all the men had to do was sit down and eat. That gave them a little more free time before bed. Clay, Callie, and I helped wipe down the kitchen. The bleach water was so strong that it took a couple of days for the smell to leave my hands. Clay and Phil pulled trash duty and Callie got to do her favorite job - vacuuming out the warming table. There's something magical about sucking up nasty food filled water with a vacuum. Corinn, Crystal, and Aaron missed out this month. Homecoming celebrations called. Our music minister filled in for Aaron and had such a good time he shared about the experience in the Sunday service. Stepping out of your comfort zone usually leads to good things.

Take A Walk

Anger and how to deal with it was the main topic of discussion at Coventry last week. The Stars shared how they felt when they are angry. Some shake, some cry, some yell.

I'm a crier. When I'm pushed to the edge I cry. I would prefer screaming, but crying seems to be more socially acceptable.

When asked what you should do when you're angry Ted had the best advice.

"Take a walk."

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Love With Actions and In Truth

Poverty quickly grows evil, twisting into torture we can't comprehend.

That thought went through my head tonight as I sat in on the International Justice Mission Briefing here in Dallas. We were walked through the steps IJM navigates to pull people out of torturous situations brought on by the despair of poverty.

Earlier in the day I received the email from Shaun with details about what Compassion International wanted us to blog about today. The theme - poverty. The IJM Briefing was excellent in helping me realize what Compassion helps families avoid.

Compassion International helps children avoid the terrors IJM fights daily. Both organizations are careful to make sure their actions speak louder than their words.

James 2:15-17
Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, "Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed," but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.

I John 3:17-18
If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth.

Compassion teams with local ministries and churches to put actions into their words. Children are being released daily from the grips of poverty by caring people in their neighborhood. It isn't foreigners coming into a village and taking over. We get to be a part of it by sponsoring children involved in the neighborhood programs. We get to help break the poverty cycle.

And we get the sweetest letters ever from the most beautiful children ever.

How can the love of God be in us if we sit back and do nothing?

Like A Deer Caught In Headlights

I'm reading The Shack. I know I'm way behind everyone else. I came across this today.
"...most folks would rather just hear what they are used to hearing, which is often not much of anything."
Do you have people like that in your life? Same conversations, same phrases, same reactions every single time you talk? When you try to mix it up and talk about something different they stare at you like a deer caught in headlights. It is SO frustrating. I find myself avoiding opportunities to share anything with these people. They want you to follow a little script they wrote years ago. And it is maddening.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The Truth Is...

Read this today and liked it.

"The truth is that there is no hope in principles or issues. There is no hope in politics, world leaders, policies or government. There is no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ candidate. There is only the hope of Jesus Christ. The only thing that remains is the grassroots gospel of a new humanity of people loving and serving and giving their lives so that God might increase and be known to others as they do so." Matt Conner

The complete post can be found in The Rabbit Room.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Can You Watch This and Not Have Your Heart Break?

More Than Groggy

My mom called me at 10:30 this morning and said she was groggy from her afternoon nap. My thinking was she was more than groggy 'cause it wasn't afternoon.

Her mornings are starting at 2 a.m. She's at her station by 3 a.m. Yesterday they prepared 36,000 lunches and then turned around and made 36,000 dinners. That is just one kitchen. There are 4 in Galveston. Mom is part of the SBTC Disaster Relief Team.

The work is beyond grueling, but she loves it. It's one of those things that you hate that it has to be done, but you love doing it. It is the same feeling I get from being at the Union Gospel Mission. I hate that homelessness exists, but I'm happy there are ways I can help out.

So, please pray for stamina for my mom and the others that are working hard and for those that are without so much.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Callie Conversation

I asked the two youngest kids at my house if they wanted their dinner chicken or hamburger based. No one answered. This isn't unusual. I'm usually ignored unless one of them has a complaint.

Chicken was my choice. I started cooking it in an unhealthy way to make my youngest kid happy. He is my biggest complainer and sometimes it is just nicer to not have to hear it.

Callie came over to see what I was cooking. If it is something she can stir, open, or chop she wants to be in the middle of helping. It wasn't, so she moved back to the computer.

About thirty minutes later this conversation took place.

Callie: What's for dinner? Chicken or hamburger?
Me: What did it look like I was cooking when you came over to see?
Callie: Chicken.
Me: So what do you think is for dinner?
Callie: Chicken?

Sponsors Needed

Real Hope For Haiti Rescue Center needs people to sponsor pallets for a shipment to Haiti.

"We still need 23 sponsors to help get the container here to Haiti. We have lots of medicine, food, peanut butter, clothes, shoes, baby formula, etc that are ready to come." Licia

Learn more here.

Maybe your office, softball team, golf buddies, Bible study group, etc...could sponsor a pallet or two.

Friday, October 3, 2008

I Was Wrong

I had a meeting the other day that I did not want to go to. I did NOT want to go to. I DID NOT want to go to. I DID NOT WANT TO GO TO.

I whined and complained - - a lot. I DID NOT WANT TO GO TO THIS MEETING, but I made myself get on the train, head to downtown, and walk into this meeting. I did SO not want to be there.

It was at a very large church with a very large reputation. I felt there was no reason for me to be there, that there would be nothing said that I wanted to hear, that I was wasting gas trying to find a parking spot, $3 for train fair, and 3 hours of my time.

I was wrong.

The minister that I did not want to meet with shared his burden for the people outside of the church building walls. He told how the devastation left by Katrina along the Mississippi coast rocked his world. Before he was only interested in the music program developed and performed for the members of his church body, those that came into his church building. Katrina changed all that. God used the disaster to open his eyes and burden his heart. In the last five weeks he has moved to Texas and started his new job at the very large church with a very large reputation. He wants his new choirs to be burdened. He wants them to look beyond the church building walls. He wants them to get their hands dirty.

Everything that I was going to suggest his choir do for Christmas Gift 2008, he suggested first. He expects the choir members to volunteer beyond just singing for thirty minutes. He wants them spending time with the homeless guests one on one and not just from the stage. He doesn't want extra attention drawn to what church the choir comes from. He knows that some of the choir members will not be happy. He could lose members over this. He understands the mindset of those that will be offended by this idea of getting their hands dirty. He was there once, before Katrina. Someone told me that choir practice at this church is no longer "just practice", it is now "worship". Wow.

I was wrong. I went in with preconceived prejudices. They were totally blown away by this minister that has a burden for those outside the church building walls. They were totally blown away by a man that wants to give this burden to others.