I'm praying for many more mornings that look like this one did!!!
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Monday, September 28, 2009
I have a new goal: to become a morning person. Or something like one, anyway. You see, I'm a hardcore night owl. Let me stay up until 3:00am and get up around 10:30am and I'm golden. But that's not really how the world operates. I've been adding more and more things onto my plate lately, and it seems like the only logical way for me to fit everything into a human life is by getting up earlier, which means going to bed earlier, which means . . . lots of things. I've been reading tips on how to become a morning person. Yes, I'm really that desperate. It's just so far from who I am naturally, I really didn't know where to start. I'd love to say tomorrow will be the day . . . but why set myself up for disaster? Maybe the next day. Or the next. Or. . .
Sunday, September 27, 2009
Today was a wonderful day, beginning with great worship and an awesome sermon. I am so fortunate to belong to a church with people who love God and serve Him with such excellence! Nate really invited the Holy Spirit into the sanctuary and truly praised Him, while PK faithfully and passionately delivered a message so critical to being a part of the body of Christ. After service we had lunch (great food/great company) and made our way back to the church for youth group. Again, I'm blessed to be able to learn from some great servants of the Lord. Pink had a great game planned out that gave the leaders an opportunity to have fun with the kids in smaller groups and build onto our relationships with them. It was a blast! And we were blessed with a HUGE group of high-school attenders this week. The best moment of the day was when I was taking a group of middle-school kids on a scavenger hunt in my car. One of them couldn't figure out how to release the buckle of the seatbelt and was trapped in the backseat. He ended up squirming his way down, getting stuck at the shoulders for a few minutes before slipping the rest of the way out. It was hilarious, but as time went on, I think he started panicking a little, which, as a good youth leader, made me laugh even more!
Saturday, September 26, 2009
I always have a song in my head. Sometimes several. And right now, none of them are my own. Preparing for Heart Song has given me the opportunity to hear other people's original music; the lyrics forcing me to question if I'm measuring up to who I should be and where my reliance is, and reminding me that this life is not my own. I love how these songs are challenging me and helping me reflect. What's God using to push you right now?
Thursday, September 24, 2009
I've been exploring HTML today and have discovered that its much easier to rewrite and edit than I thought. I've never used a blog template with a background before because the posts' column is always too skinny to display the streaming slideshows that I use so often. Well, today I figured out how to take a template and pretty much change anything about it I want, after some quick googling and a few minutes of trial and error, of course. So YAY! The options just became limitless, which means there's a lot more room for creativity!
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Tonight I went to the Techno-Gym for a workout. I think visiting the wellness center has really helped me and I'm feeling the best I've felt in a really long time, so I thought I should take advantage of not being in pain and . . . cause myself pain (???) Anyway, I have this key that I insert into each machine, and it automatically adjusts to my settings. It's really cool, but the problem is, my settings haven't changed since 2007 . . . when I last used the Techno-Gym. So, needless to say, I'm way out of the routine of my workout and the settings are a bit challenging for me in my current, um . . . condition, or lack there of . . . The treadmill kept warning me that my heart rate was getting too high, but when I slowed down it warned me that I wasn't going to meet my distance goals. I thought my heart was going to explode! So, yeah. Adjustments need to be made to my workout. But YAY for day one . . . I think. ;o)
Monday, September 21, 2009
I am surrounded and influenced by so many great people during this season of my life, and tonight I had the opportunity to hear one of them share their heart. Kimberly and I attended a dinner meeting for CSI Ministries this evening and Jamie Barton was the guest speaker. Jamie is a full-time missionary in Jamaica, and among other things, is the administrator of the Jamaica Student Support Program. This is a wonderful ministry that allows impoverished Jamaicans to receive an education, empowering them to pursue a higher quality of life. You can learn more about this program and how you can help HERE. Jamie spoke about faith and hope, and how lives are changed when these things are put into action. Jamie has applied this to her own life well, helping to equip others to do the same. I had to chuckle when she began to talk about how all we need to do to make a difference is to take action. I've had several conversations with people lately about how an enormous part of life is just about DOING things. In church we've been talking a lot about being 'doers' instead of just 'hearers.' I guess my point is: DO IT!
Sunday, September 20, 2009
Thursday, September 17, 2009
Today we started decorating our house for Halloween. It's such a fun time of year! Some of my best childhood memories are from autumn and Halloween time; scarecrows, playing in the cornfield, jumping in leafs, the nice brisk weather, costumes, decorations... This is the first time we've really put out all of our decorations for a couple years, so I'm really excited. I'll post some pictures in a few days when its all done!
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
This is love for God: to obey his commands. And his commands are not burdensome, for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.
Monday, September 14, 2009
Today I had a wonderful adventure with my good friend Super Sam. First we explored the universe in a rocket ship, but due to technical failures we crash-landed in a strange world, where we were nearly eaten by dinosaurs. We barely escaped alive, making the long journey back home before dark. And just in time to watch an episode of Wonder Pets, of course.
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death, even death on a cross!
Sunday, September 13, 2009
. . . you know, just kinda having a conversation with God. I was getting cleaned up before work tomorrow, lathering up some shaving cream so I could shave. I'm still struggling a bit to, well . . . not be such a Whaa Whaa, and was talking to God about it. Apparently I was into the conversation more than I realized. I began applying the shaving cream to my hair instead of my face without even noticing. Thank God I realized what I was doing before I shaved my head! Despite being a Whaa Whaa, I had to laugh at myself. That is all.
Saturday, September 12, 2009
Names: Ellen, Isaiah, and Nate Canady Aliases: CATE, Ug, and The Hawker Family bio: Ellen lived the life of a normal girl, hiding her regenerative powers from her family and friends, but her ability to heal herself did not go undetected. Ellen, 23, was captured by evil scientists called The Bitter Nerds, who renamed her CATE (Cerebral Augmentative Technologies Experiment), placing a small electronic device in the base of her brain. Her regenerative powers made her a prime subject for the experiment. The operation was successful and allowed the Bitter Nerds to control CATE's thoughts, augment her senses beyond that of any living creature, and enhance her speed, strength, and agility. CATE was trained in many forms of hand-to-hand combat and became a flawless marksmen and tracker with her newly heightened senses. The Bitter Nerds used CATE as an assassin, wiping out the world's superheroes one by one, with a single goal in mind: world domination. CATE's life changed forever when she set out on an assignment to annihilate Nate Canady, known to most of the world as The Hawker, a humanoid mutant with the power to morph into a hawk, as well as expectorating a poisonous green, phlegm-like substance that paralyzes his foes upon contact. Born in the Appalachain Mountains and raised in a log cabin, Nate has a deep appreciation for the wilderness, using his powers to fight for nature preservation. When CATE sighted The Hawker and set her laser beam's aim, he sensed danger and began transforming into a hawk to flee. CATE shot him admist his transformation and he let out a shriek of agony. The hawk-like, piercing call sent sound vibrations through the device that the Bitter Nerds had placed in CATE's brain, damaging it. CATE instantly became aware of her actions and quickly went to The Hawker's aid, nursing him to health over several months. Injured by the laser beam's shot, The Hawker lost his ability to transform completely into a hawk, but was left in permanent form of neither hawk nor man, but both. The Hawker found that in this new state he was stronger than ever before, could fly even higher and further, and could produce his poisonous, green phlegm-like substance in greater quantities. Over the months that CATE had nursed The Hawker back to health, the two superhumans fell in love. CATE, no longer controlled by the Bitter Nerds yet still benefiting from the abilities they had given her, brought the evil scientists' rein to an end. The Hawker and CATE married and began a crime fighting duo known as the Cantastics. CATE fights evil restlessly to redeem herself from all the superheroes she destroyed while controlled by the Bitter Nerds, while her husband, The Hawker, fights with a passion to preserve Earth's natural resources and for his love of spitting on people while flying high above them. Two years after saying their vows, the superhero duo became a trio when CATE gave birth to Isaiah, better known as Ug. Ug grew and developed at a rapid rate, and at the age of two had reached a level of strength only surpassed by that of the Hulk. Despite his youth, Ug is an important part of the Cantastics' fight against evil, easily crushing enemies with his club. It is unclear what powers he will possess when full grown.
Thursday, September 10, 2009
Today I accidentally deleted some files I need. Everything in them can be easily recreated, except for one image I found online. "No problem," I thought, "I'll just find the same image again." And that is when the Internet swallowed the image into the abyss. I searched for four hours. No joke. Four hours and I could not find the image. So I guess I'll move on to Plan B. The problem is, Plan A has already been initiated. Oops! Dumb desktop trashcan . . .
This morning I am putting some final touches on two packages I am sending out to some teams of believers who are going to Haiti for a short-term missions experience. One of the ministries God is using CSI for in Haiti is HOPE Orphanage, where orphaned girls are raised in a Christian environment as sisters. I love hearing stories from people who have visited HOPE, and I pray I have the opportunity to see for myself one day. You can learn more about the HOPE Orphanage by clicking HERE.
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Depression. Anxiety. Doubts. Deception. Spiritual warfare is real. And it sucks. God has arranged some conversations in my life this week that I needed to have. Some unexpected encouragement. Things said that I needed to hear. But I'm lame. And weak. These negative feelings are still there. Maybe I just won't let them go. With each step of faith I take, my comfort level grows, and so God calls me to step out even further. As I prepare to take new steps, I am attacked, much like my wife has been recently. But my attacks aren't coming from outside sources. They are within myself. Me against me. Boo to that.
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
Name: Kris Sorensen Alias: Mimic Man Bio: Kris, also known as Mimic Man, has a power referred to as instantaneous muscle memory, meaning he has the ability to acquire nearly any skill by merely watching it being performed once. Kris first learned he had this power when he was a sophomore in college, attending his girlfriend's dance recital. When the dancers began their routine, Kris found himself unable to stay seated, pirouetting down the isle. Kris' girlfriend was consumed with jealously as she watch him perform the splits with the utmost grace, like someone who had been training his entire life. Kris never saw her again after that night. Hurting from being left so abruptly by the woman he loved, Kris threw himself into his new found passion; dance. Kris quickly became an expert at all forms of dance and was world renowned, but he felt an emptiness in his life. Shortly after the incident at the dance recital, Kris learned his abilities weren't limited to dance; he could assimilate any activity. As Kris' discontent grew, he began watching old karate films, pairing martial arts with dance, creating a new fighting technique he calls groove-fu. Kris decided to put his new dance-fight to the test by entering a street fight, quickly realizing that he was unbeatable when he high-kicked and tap-danced all over his opponent within seconds. Now, using his abilities to fight crime as Mimic Man, Kris has never been happier; making the world a safer placed one beautiful dance move (and an occasional karate chop) at a time.
Sunday, September 6, 2009
On October 17, a group of songwriters from our church will be sharing their music. I am very excited about this event, which we've named Heart Song. Nate Canady, Derek Chalfant, Brent Smith, Dave Reese, and myself will be sharing. We are so blessed to worship a God who not only hears our prayers, but speaks to us, and in so many different ways. Think for a moment how inconceivable that is; the Creator of the universe, Maker of all things speaks to us! Feeling that some of the songs I've written are messages that God has placed in my heart, I love sharing them. Its not something I do very often, but I feel God pushing me to share more. Even better, this will be a celebration of the song God has placed in the hearts of Marggy Hensley and Aaron and Melissa Black. It's a beautiful song of missions; a song of sacrifice and devotion. Its such a blessing to watch as they respond to this song in obedience, preparing to serve the Lord full-time in Jamaica. Hopefully, this event will serve as an encourager to them in this journey, and will result in some funds to help support their ministries. Planning this event so far has been great, and I know that Heart Song will be a wonderful opportunity to share the messages God has given us. We plan on explaining the inspiration behind each song and discussing what they've meant to us in our relationship with God. I am praying that all hearts will be receptive and that we, the songwriters, will be faithful in the delivery.
Saturday, September 5, 2009
Friday, September 4, 2009
Nate C. and I have been working together on songs a lot lately, which is not only a blast, but helps me develop more as a singer, a songwriter, a friend, and as a Christ follower. Nate is a great person who loves God and is a wonderful musician and writer. I've learned a lot from him since June 2008, when we first worked on a song together called The Edge. We are taking on a bigger project now called Heartsong (more on that soon to come). I am enjoying the process and am already looking forward to more projects in the future. The gears seem to be turning a little too fast for two minds to keep up with, but it seems like the more obedient and disciplined we are in our music and writing, the more God provides His inspiration.
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
The saga continues. And continues. And continues. So, not much has changed. Same old symptoms. Well, actually, I lie. Something has changed. About three weeks ago I woke up with awful stomach cramps. It felt like my guts where being twisted. It was literally the worst pain I've ever felt. Everyday since then I've had these cramps off and on. The pain is still intense, but the cramps are becoming fewer and far between, which I am grateful for. When my stomach is not cramping, I just feel very . . . blah, and it doesn't take much activity before I am completely exhausted. This is along with all previous symptoms. My employer is in transition so I have no insurance right now, and I cannot afford medical services alone. So today I visited a wellness center in Wabash that was highly recommended by friends. It is focused on homeopathic remedies, particularly acupressure. The doctor I saw today told me I was having issues with my liver and gall bladder just by feeling lymph nodes in my back, something that has previously required hundreds, maybe even thousands of dollars worth of blood tests and ultra sounds from other doctors. He gave me his acupressure schpeel, did some gentle rubbing, and 'shot' me with his acupressure gun here and there. Then he sent me home with some minerals and an appointment to come back in two weeks. It was completely painless, which is more than what I can say for the "Poke. Does that hurt? Poke. Does that hurt?" approach of all the other doctors I've visited for my stomach issues in the past. And its affordable. I'm just praying its affective.