Sunday, November 29, 2009

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Picture Time!

The past few weeks have been packed full; my brother got married, we went to a church-planting conference in Louisville, we flew to Florida for a CSI Ministries retreat, had Thanksgiving with the Teshuva, spent time with friends and family . . . Of course, if you know me or read my blog often, you know I take lots of pictures. I've just been avoiding uploading them unto my laptop because I'm impatient and it seems to take forever. But there are some pics I wanted to post, so here they are, all at once.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Today was kinda lame, as far as Thanksgivings go. But it was a good thing. Instead of all the distractions of the "perfect" holiday experience, I actually . . . gave thanks. So, really, it wasn't lame at all.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thankful: my parents

My parents love me. I used to think this was a given. Then I was introduced to a world of monsters who have children. I've never felt quite the same about my own parents since. Their love has shaped me and I am ever thankful. They are such a blessing.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Thankful: lunch . . . no, it's not just about food!

Sometimes we just need a break. Time to . . . chill. At work, we call this lunch. In fact, in my office, I am the lunch-nazi. It's not always gauged by the growling of bellies, but sometimes the growling of my co-workers when their frustrations have reached a certain level. I sense it and know . . . its time for lunch. And so there are these occasional days where I push and insist and nag and coax until finally calling to place the lunch orders after convincing everyone it's time to take a break. Its okay to take a break. I have no doubt that on these days I am annoying. Everyone feels like what they're doing is important. And it probably is. But they need lunch. I see how much they need it. How much more productive they are afterwards.
In life, whenever I feel I've reached a certain point of exhaustion, something happens. Things change. I'm forced to slow. To stop. To be refueled. Sometimes I fight it, insisting on operating according to my own schedule. During these times, God gets in my face. He tells me its time for lunch. Sometimes I say, "no," but I'm learning that this isn't so wise. I'm starting to finally appreciate His timing, and learning to gratefully accept when He says "lunch," excited to see what's afterwards.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Thankful: employment

I have been very blessed to have always had a reliable source of income. This is something I used to just take for granted and thought of as a normal part of life. But within the past couple years, after seeing hard-worker after hard-worker unemployed, I've come to realize what a blessing this is.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

This Day Update

The Turkey drop was a success! The Youth provided all the fixin's for FOURTEEN families' Thanksgiving meals! They packed them all up in boxes/baskets/totes, took them to pre-selected yet unsuspecting homes, dropped them off on the porch, rang the doorbell/knocked, then RAN. It's always such a blessing to watch the kids receive so much joy out of serving and sharing God's love with other people. Then we all gathered in the gym at the church and ate a fantastic Thanksgiving dinner. Kimberly did a great job orchestrating the meal. All the youth leaders and several awesome volunteers put forth a lot of effort and it all came together so well. My parents were great and came out to help, deep-frying 3 turkeys for us (mmmm). I snapped a few pictures, then my camera died, so what few pics I got I'll get posted after my camera's all charged up. I was right. This was a great day! God is awesome!

This Day

This day is going to be awesome! First, the youth group is going to bless several unexpecting families with everything they need for a Thanksgiving meal. Then we'll all meet back at the church to have a great big Thanksgiving meal together. Hopefully, pictures to come!

Thankful: songwriting

Sometimes when songwriting, I feel like the inspiration has come directly from God. And what an awesome thought that He would speak to me in that way! And it serves so many purposes in my life. Processing. Expressing. Releasing. Reflecting. Inquiring. Desiring. Praising. And every now and then, writing something that someone else needed to hear. And on the occasion that that happens, feeling blessed to be a part of that moment.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Thankful: my wife

I have an amazing wife. She is very supportive and so loving, always pushing me to excel. As my bio says, our walk with Christ has been together, nearly step by step, and its been a wonderful journey. I am so grateful for God's blessing on our marriage.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Thankful: brothers & sisters in Christ

God has provided me with an abundance of spiritual support; a network consisting of friends, leaders, and pastors who share the Truth and Love. God has revealed much of himself to me through these people. This list of names is long, and I am grateful for each person on it.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

This is Hysterical!

Thankful: salvation

This morning I thought it would be good for me to spend a little extra time each day for a week focusing on one specific thing I am thankful for. Today I am going to reflect on the cross and what it means. Salvation through Christ is something I could never thank God enough for.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

rein in me

Chances are, I won't post this. Or if I do, I'll probably just get up in the middle of the night and delete it. Sometimes it just helps to write things out. Its hard to be vulnerable. And I don't want to be one of those people, but . . . I've been having a really difficult time with anxiety and depression lately. Some days its one or the other. Other days its a mixture of both. Probably why I have trouble sleeping sometimes. I use to be medicated and sometimes wonder if maybe I still should be, but that never really seemed to help me. Its irrational. Its really about nothing, but in the heat of it it feels like its about everything. Today I just felt afraid. I didn't want to do my job because I was afraid I wouldn't do it right. I was given the opportunity to lead worship this weekend but felt too anxious to do it. The thought of going to growth group made me feel like I had a pit in my stomach. And even though they are all great people and we had great conversations, the pit never went away until I was able to shut the car door behind me to head home. There is a lot to unpack. Some good. Some bad. Some just silly and no unpacking required. I've come to the realization recently that anxiety, depression, and the sense of worthlessness & uselessness I often feel play a big part in my walk with Christ. This is a weakness the enemy can use against me, or a way for God to be glorified, all based on who I allow to rein in my life. God, rein in me.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Romans 12:15

"Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn."
Sometimes this is really difficult.

Some Randomness

  • I love setting out decorations. Hate putting them back up.
  • It irritates me when my Facebook, Twitter, and Blogger profile pics aren't the same.
  • I will have two new sister-in-laws within a week (my brother is getting married tomorrow, and next weekend Kimberly's oldest brother is getting married).
  • I have a new car battery, thanks to my dad. Merry Christmas to me!
  • Next week, I will only be in the office for one day.
  • I like wind chimes (as long as they make a pleasant sound).
  • I'm thinking about (gulp) taking a class or two. Nothing specific. Just a thought.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

This is Funny . . .

but my wife does it way funnier. You should make her do the voice the next time you see her!