Wednesday, February 29, 2012

MOG 022912

Not sure what's up.

How I feel.
What I want.

I'm good.
I'm blah.
I'm happy and sad.

Feeling ambitious and apathetic all at the same time.
Doesn't make sense, but its possible.

Having tiny bursts of panic. Attacks of worthlessness.
Peppered with joy.

Mood logging is difficult when it's difficult to identify the mood you're trying to log.
So I'll just say.... its complicated.

Las Penasquitas


"Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer."

-Psalm 19:14

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

amazing amazing amazing

If you scroll down a few posts, you'll see I've recently been introduced to The Civil Wars music, and have fallen in love with their song Poison & Wine. I searched YouTube for a tutorial to learn to play this song on guitar, and came across a very talented artist, Angela Lupinacci, who not only posted a tutorial, but an amazing cover, where she's transformed this secular song about falling out of love into a beautiful piece of worship. Please give it a listen!


“If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives; be kind anyway.  If you are successful, you will win some false friends and true enemies; succeed anyway.  If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you; be honest and frank anyway.  If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous; be happy anyway. The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow; do good anyway…

You see, in the final analysis, it is between you and God; it was never between you and them anyway.”

-Mother Teresa

Snapshot: 022812 2000 PST

Souplantation with my wife and the amazing Thompson family :-)
Check it out! Some serious damage was done here!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Dear Torn,

Life is overwhelming at times, to the point we want to cry out to God, "But you're not supposed to give us more than we can handle!" And so often, clinging onto this notion that God has somehow let us down on His promise, we grow more and more bitter. What does God really say about this?  In the book of 1 Corinthians, the apostle Paul writes: "No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it". 1 Corinthians 10:13

God tells us in his word that he won't tempt us beyond our ability to overcome, and that along with temptation, he'll always provide an escape. That's a little different than just saying, "God will never give me more than I can 'handle'." This is when temptation comes into play; when we know our own strength is not enough, and we must choose to either draw strength from something else or to give up the battle entirely. The enemy is always attacking us. He is the king of lies, and sometimes it's tempting to buy into those lies when we can't quite understand the truth.

How could this possibly be a temptation? Well, our minds don't deal well with 'complicated.' Let's say we believe in a God that loves us fiercely and unconditionally, we place our faith in a God that sacrificed everything to be our savior, all while suffering intensely and experiencing a pain that this same God somehow allows. This is more than our minds can conceive, and so the enemy begins to tempt us with lies that simplify it all: I must be slipping farther from God. God has given up on me. I must be worthless. Does God even exist? Is God truly good? etc.

As I wrote earlier, temptation comes into play when we know our own strength is not enough, and we must choose to either draw strength from something else or to give up the battle entirely. The temptation to doubt and make amendments to what we know as truth is undeniable, and this is giving up the battle. Perhaps adopting lies as truth isn't exactly accepting defeat, but it is waving a white flag when we should still be fighting for victory.

And there's the other side of temptation; the temptation to draw strength from other things. Sometimes we are tempted by things during trials that are obviously unhealthy and unpleasing to God: drugs, alcohol, self-destructive behavior, pornography, affairs, abusive behavior, etc. On the flip side, we might turn to our families, our children, our careers, hobbies, etc. These seem like very positive, healthy coping mechanisms, and God did bless us all with these things for a reason, but our sole source of strength is Him and Him alone.

We feel torn when we've fallen into temptation; when we've bought into lies and drawn strength from something other than God. Where are you in life? What struggles do you face and what lies are you being tempted to own as truth? Is God your one and only strength? Ask yourselves these questions, and begin piecing yourself back together knowing that you really might be facing more than you can take alone. Remind yourself over and over again what you know to be true: God never abandons us, His grace is sufficient, living to glorify and honor him is top priority. Look into your situation to find how you can use it to make God's name famous. He is your strength.

In doing these things, your life will become a living testimony of God's power. Life won't become perfect and your pain won't just go away, but it will become purposeful. The pieces will fall into place.

*I'm praying for you, and I asking everyone who might read this to pray as well. God bless you!

my new favorite song

blessing in the form of an FB commit

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Snapshot: 022612 2300 PST

Filling out paper work to the sound of some new music that was just introduced to me by a friend today.

The Civil Wars.
Simple and beautiful.

Thanks, friend!
I've needed something new to unwind to!

damn lines

Friday was an interesting day, a day that I'm still processing.

It was quite exciting! There was mud flinging. Some kicking and screaming. Hitting. Biting. Urinating on walls. Cursing. Two capture/escorts. Three restraints. Two protective safety room seclusions. A ride in the back of a police car!

One of the featured acts in the circus-that-was-Friday needed hospitalized. The devil was telling him to hurt other people. And to kill himself. Our supervisor is out, so I was able to kinda spearhead the process, which I loved. I miss the aspect of professional interactions from previous middle management positions.

Making observations. Evaluating information. Finding patterns. Making educated predictions of upcoming behaviors. And then discussing it with A) people who give a crap B) people who actually understand what I'm talking about C) people who actually believe I might know what I'm talking about.

It was a pleasant blast from the past, from a time and place where my professional judgement was valued and appreciated just as much, if not more, than my ability to entertain and win compliance.

These types of conversations, they give me a rush. What's happening? Why is it happening? What's likely to happen next? What's the best realistic resolution? I love it!

But then... but then there is the other side of it all...

The kid I took to the hospital in the back of a police car is MY kid. That one kid that just finds a place in that one staff's heart? That one kid you just can't pray for enough? That kid. My kid.

Waiting with him for over three hours in the ER. Holding his hand. Telling him its okay. Assuring him the doctors are there to help. Comforting him. Speaking on his behalf. Advocating for him.

Then watching him be strapped into a gurney and wheeled into the back of an ambulance to be transported to a mental hospital.

"Are you coming with me, Naty Poo?"
"No buddy. I can't."


He's my kid. But he's not my kid. And that's a tough line to walk. A difficult line to find. And a heartbreaking line to follow.

The doors closed. He smiled at me with a tear in his eye as he waved goodbye. Damn lines.

Friday, February 24, 2012

100 Days #24

Matthew 19.

Some verses that jumped out at me and my thoughts on them:

"At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them and said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven." 18:1-4

- The Kingdom of heaven is literally the very opposite of current culture where the humble are trampled and the prideful triumph.

"Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me..."18:5

- As a childcare counselor, how could I not love this verse?

"Then Peter came up and said to him, “Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy-seven times." Matthew 18:21-22

- I am not capable of this kind of forgiveness on my own. I am so dependent on God's grace to love others as I should.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Snapshot: 022312 2100 PST

This is me, kicking my feet up.

The kids are asleep, which is a blessing I can't quite describe to someone who hasn't spent a day in a group-home with six emotionally disturbed kids.

Today was not the worst day ever.
It wasn't even close to it.
But it was extremely chaotic.

The kids seemed so needy today. At one point I had three kids literally begging for some one-on-one time, each saying they had something they really needed to talk to someone about. At another point in the evening, four kids decided they all needed to ask me a question at the exact same time. Not being the most observant creatures, none of them quite understood they weren't the only one trying to ask me something.

I thought I was going to snap there for a moment.
But alas, I did not. Mostly :-)

I'm so thankful for these times I get to spend with my feet up to balance out with the crazy times!

100 Days #23

Matthew 17 

- Just a few thoughts that popped up while reading today.

"And he was transfigured before them, and his face shone like the sun, and his clothes became white as light." 17:2
- How beautiful and terrifying it must have been to see the true form of the Son of God...

"Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why could we not cast it out?" He said to them, “Because of your little faith. For if you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you." 17:19-20

- If the disciples could not cast out the demon from the child because of their "little faith," then I think it's safe to say that they could have cast the demon out if they would have had "big faith." If that's the case, what would "big faith" look like today? Would a person of "big faith" be casting demons out of those we call mentally ill in current culture? Would there be healings? What?

We are a fallen race, and we continue to drift further and further from what we were originally created to be with each generation. Are we even capable of taping into this kind of powerful faith today?

"As they were gathering in Galilee, Jesus said to them, “The Son of Man is about to be delivered into the hands of men, and they will kill him, and he will be raised on the third day.” And they were greatly distressed." 17:22-23

- What went through the disciples minds when they heard the prophecies of the crucifixion? This wasn't just a faith they followed, or a doctrine they subscribed to. Jesus was their friend. They heard him speak. They felt his touch. They ate with him and traveled with him... 

Did they selfishly repress the prophecy, somehow doubting it's truth as a way of guarding their own hearts? Did they embrace it as the bridge to their salvation? It's seem as though they struggle to grasp the concept that Jesus is the Son of God despite witnessing his miracles, and that he will, in fact, be crucified. Do they struggle with this because they're incapable of understanding? Or unwilling? Or somewhere between the two?

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

and so it starts...

Student orientation tonight.
Classes start in a couple weeks.


I'm excited :-)

MOG 022212

After a couple weeks in somewhat of a slump, I'm feeling up to par again.
I've found motivation, or more accurately, motivation has found me.

Spirits are high.
Life is good.

It always is.
But, you know...

Smiles. Hikes. Guitar. Writing. Chats.
Singing. Gym. Praying. Bible reading.
Creativity. Life.

It all feels good. Again.

Don't be fooled by her cuteness...

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Christ is Risen

// V1 // Let no one caught in sin remain / Inside the lie of inward shame / We fix our eyes upon the cross / And run to Him who showed great love / And bled for us / Freely You've bled for us // Chorus // Christ is risen from the dead / Trampling over death by death / Come awake, come awake / Come and rise up from the grave / Christ is risen from the dead / We are one with Him again / Come awake, come awake / Come and rise up from the grave // V2 // Beneath the weight of all our sin / You bowed to none but heaven's will / No scheme of hell, no scoffer's crown / No burden great can hold You down / In strength You reign / Forever let Your church proclaim // Chorus // Bridge // O death, where is your sting? O hell, where is your victory? / O church, come stand in the light The glory of God has defeated the night / O death, where is your sting? O hell, where is your victory? / O church, come stand in the light Our God is not dead, He's alive, He's alive // Chorus //

stupid genius

“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”

-Albert Einstein

100 Days #22

Matthew 16

" For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul? " Matthew 16:25-26

What do we lose in eternity when we gain riches and status? What do we gain when we lose ourselves amidst this world?

There can be no greater reward than salvation.

How do we lose our life for God's sake?
What does it look like?

And how do we know it's all truly for the sake of God when we do it knowing salvation is our reward?

who's a licensed driver now!?!?

Snapshot: 022112 0200 PST

Today, Nate and I went on a hike. We covered some mileage, but it failed to be the epic hike we'd anticipated. That is, until I was attacked by this snake. Okay, attacked might be a slight exaggeration, but non-the-less I was terrified. I couldn't even watch Nate get close enough to it to take this picture.

I increased the color saturation and contrast of this picture so the snake would stand out a bit more. Naturally, its very well camouflaged.

Just thinking about it still gives me the chills hours later...

On the way home, we stopped by the shaved ice place and did some sugar therapy.
I'd like to think it helped me process the trauma.

reminded today

Jesus lived his earthly life to bring honor and glory to his Father. Aren't we to do the same?

Towards the end of Matthew 15, Jesus had healed so many people on a mountain by the Sea of Galilee that the people "glorified the God of Israel." (Matthew 15:31)

At his very touch, the blind could see and the crippled could walk, yet Jesus managed to do these things in a manner that brought glory to God, not unto himself. And Jesus just didn't stop ministering to the crowd after the people were healed and began praising God. He fed them. He continued to meet their needs, because that's just how he loved.

Now, unless I experience some serious gift shift, I won't be healing the blind or multiplying fish anytime soon. Chances are, you won't be either.

But what can we do to glorify the God of Israel?
How can we do it in a way that directs all the glory away from us and unto Him?

I needed reminded today to live intentionally.
And so did you.

Every step we take is an important one.

Monday, February 20, 2012

100 Days #19

Matthew 15.

Jesus gives the smack down like only He can in this chapter, literally calling-out the pharisees as the hypocrites they were.

What I hear Jesus saying in these verses (Matthew 15:1-20) is simple. It seems, to me, that He is stressing the importance of loving and honoring God with your heart and living in a way that is pleasing to Him, instead of 'loving' and 'honoring' God falsely to impress others or just to feel good about yourself by boastfully living by 'rules' for the sake of rule-following...

Over the past fifteen minutes I've typed, deleted, and re-typed out several ideas. My mind is rabbit-trailing right now, just pondering all the countless thoughts this chapter could invoke. Not many of them seem to connect with one another well, so I'm just gonna let them brew for a while.

And again, as in many of these chapters, the miracles Jesus performed...
The way He loved and lived.


be still: my next tattoo?

Today's Writing Prompt: Mistakes

What mistakes do you have the most difficulty tolerating?

We all do it.

From time to time, we all slip up and say something that just doesn't sound nice at all. But some people, they do it all the time.

Certain people, living in an endless oblivion, simply open their mouths and hurt others with no intention of doing so. It could be what they say, how they say it, or when they say it. Maybe its what they don't say.

It's not the mistake that I have a difficulty tolerating, its the ignorance of it.
It's the fact that one person can hurt another person without as much as even noticing what they've done.

Think before you speak. Think while you speak.
Then do some more thinking after you speak.


Sunday, February 19, 2012

Snapshot: 021912 1100 PST

Its Sunday!


"See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know Him."

1 John 3:1

100 Days #18

Day 18! Matthew 14!

Lots of miracles in this chapter.
Healing, feeding hungry crowds, walking on water...

And something else.

"... he withdrew from there in a boat to a desolate place by himself." 14:13

"... he went up on the mountain by himself to pray." 14:23

Jesus had compassion on the sick and healed them. He fed the hungry and shared life with His disciples.  And, even as the Son of God, He set aside time to tend to his own relationship with His Heavenly Father.

By Himself. He'd go. To pray.
And so should I. 

LOVE the response here! lol!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Snapshot: 021812 1300 PST

Escape to Double Peak with a kid who needed to get away.
I love this place.

hunger: satisfied

"Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied."

-Matthew 5:6

gonna still smile

I worked fourteen hours today. Other than being uber long, the shift wasn't too bad.
No off-the-wall craziness. No AWOLing. Nothing too terrible.
But I've not had the best of dispositions lately.

The fruit of my labor never seems quite ripened.  Granted, there are a few outstanding cases, but remember, I'm being whiny here....

Sometimes I just wonder where I'll be in ten years as a result of what I'm doing now. I've been dedicated to the field for the past decade of my life, and I've gotten a lot of satisfaction from it.

But I used to have dreams. Dreams that I can't seem to remember anymore.

This isn't the life I planned on having; spending so very little time with my wife, making so very little money, barring burdens in my heart for so many...

I never had ambitions of building a career on being a 'nice guy.'
I wanted a skill. A trade. A place. 

I wanted to be an artist, a musician, a teacher; something with a title that people could recognize and know what purpose I serve. I wanted a function; a clear contribution.

But I'm not that guy. I'm one of those 'little bit of this, little bit of that' kinda guys.
No one quite knows where I fit or what I do. At work.  In life. 

And either do I, sometimes.

And this, this here, is one of those times. Tomorrow could different. Hopefully it will be... but until then, until I'm back to good 'ol smile-and-mean-it me, well, I'm gonna still smile, I'm just not gonna mean it quite as much as I normally would.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Snapshot: 021712 1900 PST

Just finished our dinner.
Now, its movie time!

Every time we watch Finding Nemo, and we get to the part where the barracuda attacks the clown fish family, this kid looks at me and says, "That's sad," all teary-eyed.

Every time.

These moments of sweetness make up for the moments of craziness....

um... wrong

... this is wrong. Very, very wrong.

I would say, "caption please" but, it's just too wrong. So so wrong.

I'm not sure what's more wrong:

The parents who thought this would be cute? Or the photographer who agreed to take it?

Ew. Did I mention this is wrong?

Thursday, February 16, 2012


This evening my mom called.
I had a nice chat with her, and with my dad.

I love them both, and I miss them.
I'm reminded on a daily basis how blessed I am to have them.

They're good people.
They truly are.
Very good people.

They've taught me quiet, patient love.
Caring and helpfulness.

All the things I need to do what God has called me to do.

I fail. Alllllll the time.
But I have a good foundation to fall back on.

Thank you, Lord, for giving me that foundation.

MOG 021512

Maybe its the crap-ton of sugar I've consumed over the past 48hrs.
Or a touch of underlining generalized anxiety.

Or perhaps its the two joining forces to kick my butt...
Well, really, its my gut...

But anyhow, my tummy is a little topsy turvy and although sleep is still my friend, it is being a little shy right now.

There is some regression, but only tiny baby steps back, for now...
Motivation is wondering.
Positivity is waning.
But just a little.

There's still some pep left in this pup :-)

Today's Writing Prompt: Helpless

What makes you feel helpless?

There's a number of things...
When I'm unable to help someone.
When I'm unable to see fruition of something I have vision for.
Basically, when I'm just unable... which is often ;o)

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Self-care = loving God

Self-care. Round two. A group of us met up at Escondido Joe's yesterday after a week of reflecting on what self-care is. We didn't come to any profound conclusions, but some significant thoughts did arise. 
Self-care = spending time with God = worship

What if you worshiped daily? How would your life change? My life? It would change tremendously.

God tells us to take his yoke, that his burden is light. But sometimes, that burden doesn't seem so light. I have to ask myself, why is this? Maybe I've deceived myself into believing it's God's yoke I'm carrying, when really its my own. There are worldly pleasures that ensue when serving God.  People notice. Some people respect me for it. It feels good to help people. It's nice making an impact. And sometimes... it just becomes a routine...

It's a terrible truth. Sometimes we fool ourselves into thinking we wear God's yoke when its our own burden we carry. But when I have awareness... when I'm focused on why I serve instead of how I'm serving... the burden is light. I have to be diligent managing the mediation of my heart and mind.

The more we are in love with God, the more love we have to share with others; the more love we have for ourselves. Love. What is love? How do we love? What does it look like? How do we love others? How do we love ourselves? How do we love God?

These are some questions that came up continuously. But that's a whole new post in itself...
It didn't matter how far off topic we'd get, we always returned to one thing;  

Self-care = loving God

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Snapshot: 021412 1700 PST

Just got a new, fun, funky 'do.
I like it!

In fact, I like it so much that I kissed my stylist!
Good thing she's my wife :-)

Great work, Love!

happy Valentine's day!


I had an interview for grad school today.
As far as I know, nothing is official...

But the department head did say, "Everything looks good! You're a perfect fit!"

Life is about to getting crazy busy(er).

Monday, February 13, 2012

born of God

"Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God..."
-1 John 5:1a

MOG 021212

I was jittery yesterday.

Was it the coffee?
Was it nerves?


But it was chipper jitters.
The kids at work said I was hyper.

That's a good thing... right?

Snapshot: 021312 0900 PST


Waiting. Waiting.  Waiting.
And waiting :-)

Good thing I have an appointment!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Snapshot: 021212 1100 PST

Its Sunday!
These are my favorite two hours of the week.

Today's outstanding theme:

Its not enough to love God more...
We have to love the world less...

how do we fix this?

I saw this picture posted on a friend's FaceBook wall.

It made me chuckle. Then it made me cry.

What have we done? How do we fix this and maintain our values?

Jesus wasn't seen as someone with his head up his own rear. In fact, Jesus was perceived as a crazy radical lover, breaking bread with tax collectors and chillin' with Lepers.

Loving the unlovables.

He was hated because of his love. And if I'm going to be hated, I want it to be for the exact same reason, not because I... well, you see the picture.

*After all, God is love.
Love regardless.


Work has been a little crazy. And so have I...
Today I just couldn't keep my cool.

So many hyped-up little boogers. So many questions. So many demands. So many issues. So many anxieties. And sticky fingers. Unwashed hands. Maladaptive behaviors...

The list of "so many's" could go on and on. And on. And...
They just have so many needs and I only have so much patience.
I have a limited capacity for chaos; a limited supply of tolerance.

I was irritated and frustrated and gr and argh and ahhhhhhh!
And it was obvious. The kids knew I was losing my mind.

And I hate knowing that they know. In a way its a positive thing; they see other people get overwhelmed too, without being destructive.

But its also a very negative thing. It's poor professional boundaries. It's not the greatest role modeling. And it's definitely not projecting the image of security and structure they need staff to provide for them.

le sigh.

Here's to hoping next week is better.
For us all...

Saturday, February 11, 2012

MOG 021112

- Having random moments of generalized anxiety that go as fast as they come
- Having random attacks of worthlessness, which also go as fast as they come
(Both of these things are emotional, yes, but they also seem to have a physical component that I can't quite describe. It just comes over me and washes through me, and then it's gone. And I'm left exhausted afterward.)
- I've been really motivated and in the gym at least every-other-day for three weeks now, but I can't get a hold of my appetite. I just eat everything that sounds good. Impulsively.
- Feeling inept in several ways.
- Wanting to feel important instead of just focusing on what is actually Important.
- Overwhelmed with work, the prospect and preparations for going to Grad school, and a handful of other little things
- Missing family
- Waking up exhausted and wanting to just go back to sleep even though I've been sleeping well.

* I guess, overall, I'm kinda in a slump right now. But I really don't feel as bad as my list is making it sound. Must just be a consequence of mood logging from time to time. Bound to be a bummer every-now-and-then.

Snapshot: 021112 2000 PST

Ice cream and Kung Fu Panda II.
Its Saturday, and the group-home has been hopping all week.

I wanted a smooth evening.
I needed it.

So I've won compliance by wielding two great weapons; sugar and CGI animation. Its not the most recommended form of behavior modification,  but I was desperate... and it works. Every time.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Snapshot: 020812 1100 PST


Tom Deininger. Look him up. His work is incredible. An inspiration for creativity and resourcefulness! These videos are both really short, but if you're only going to watch one, then watch the first one. Watch it until the very end, otherwise you'll miss the "art."

New Self Portrait from Thomas Deininger on Vimeo.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

100 Days #17

Day 17. Matthew 13. Have you read it lately?
I just did, and one of my favorite parables in this chapter!

“A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seeds fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured them. Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and immediately they sprang up, since they had no depth of soil, but when the sun rose they were scorched. And since they had no root, they withered away. Other seeds fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. Other seeds fell on good soil and produced grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty." Matthew 13:3-8

Soil needs to be worked; tilled and weeded and fertilized. Rocks and roots have to be removed. Pesky wildlife has to be accounted for. There's lots of work to be done. I have to keep this in mind when sharing about Christ. Certain hearts may not be ready yet. Maybe God's plan isn't always for me to see a person give their life to Him; maybe its His plan that I help to work the soil a little bit, remove a rock or two for the seeds that will be planted in the future. I also have to keep this in mind because my own heart is a field of soil, too. And a fruitful field needs continuous tending; maintenance. I need to keep the ground worked and fertilized. I have to rid myself of weeds and pests. Daily.

Snapshot: 020712 1700 PST

How should I spend this rainy Tuesday evening?

Hm... I think an ice cream sundae and a visit to the pet store with Mr. Canady sounds nice...

* Cute kid story time!!! While we were in the car Isaiah asked me what 'that sound' was. I explained to him that he was hearing my windshield wipers, and he commented on how all cars and trucks have them. I asked him if he thought airplanes had windshield wipers too, and he said, "Um... no, I don't think so because they fly above the clouds, so they're over the rain instead of under it."

I'm pretty sure airplanes do have some sort of windshield wipers, but Isaiah's answer was awfully logical for a four year old.

And it was pretty darn cute, too!

Self-care: the beginning of a quest

Self-care. Google it. You're not going to come across a clear, concise definition.

The only consistent theme of self-care I came across after fifteen minutes of online research is that it's really important.

But why? What does it even mean to self-care? What does the act of self-caring look like?

And specifically, what does it look like for a Christian?
Where is the line between self-care and self-centeredness?

Is their even such a thing as self-care in a Christ follower's world? I thinks so... I think it probably looks a little different than it does to the rest of the world... but I believe it does exist and serves an important purpose.

So, along with some other folks, I'm on a mission to learn more; to find some answers.

What is self-care? Is it a part of the Christian lifestyle? If so, why? Is self-care something you achieve, or something you practice?

Jumping into the Word, soul searching, and picking at some other peoples' brains...
Here we go! Thoughts? I'd love to hear/read them! Feel free to comment here, or email me!

*Or just stop by Escondido Joe's, Tuesdays at 11:30am and chat about it with us ;o)

Snapshot: 020712 1400 PST

Monday, February 6, 2012

100 Days #16

Day 16. Matthew 12. Read it with me!

This verse jumps out at me:  

"Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or make the tree bad and its fruit bad, for the tree is known by its fruit. You brood of vipers! How can you speak good, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. The good person out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure brings forth evil." Matthew 12:33-35

Jesus just lays it all out here. Simple enough. Gotta love it.

Too Much of Me 020612

From the mouth of babes 020512

Him: When you're famous will you still like to help kids?
Me: Famous? I'm never going to be famous.
Him: Now you will be, just for saying that! I said I'd never end up in juvie and then I did.
Me: Hm... (laughter) I'm not sure it works like that...

*the mind of a juvenile delinquent is always good for a laugh!

100 Days #15

Day 15 Matthew 11 Read it!

I love this verse: Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. Matthew 11:28-30

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Excited for my 'weekend'

Sitting here.

Wishing it was 12:30am so I could hop in my car and drive home.

To my comfy bed.
And to my lovely wife.

Its been a good day at work, I'm just anxious for my 'weekend' to begin.

An entire day with my honey, a few days to play around with an awesome camera a friend has loaned me, some creative projects, maybe even a hike or two....

And today. Is moving. So slowly.

MOG 020512

I've been having these brief attacks of depression and self doubt the past few days. They're these tiny little bursts of yuckiness that hit unexpectedly, then leave as quickly as they came. Fleeting; which is a good thing. It could be so much worse. I'm grateful for where I'm at right now.

- I feel loved by some wonderful people
- Enjoying working out in the gym
- I feel creative
- Feeling concerned about the future
- Wondering where my place will be as life continues to change
- Been wanting to stay up all night, but am still sleeping well when I try
- Enjoying the company of loved ones
- I've been sentimental lately
- Been utilizing and benefiting from some relaxation techniques

100 Days #14

Day 14. Matthew 10. Read it!

A few verses that stand out to me:

"... You received without paying; give without pay." 
-Matthew 10:8b 

"... When they deliver you over, do not be anxious how you are to speak or what you are to say, for what you are to say will be given to you in that hour. For it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you." -Matthew 10:19-20

"So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven." -Matthew 10:32-33

Saturday, February 4, 2012

letting go

I'm letting go.
Figuratively, and literally.

I'm letting this kid go out the door.
I'm letting him go wherever he wants.

I'm letting go of the responsibility.
Its not mine.

The powers that be have decided this kid isn't hands-on, meaning physical interventions aren't part of his treatment plan. So even though this twelve year old that looks like he's only nine years old and has a broken arm has no business wondering this neighborhood alone... I apparently have no business stopping him.

I'm letting go.
Trying to, anyways...

days like today

Days like today make me wish I had a 'normal' job.

Everywhere you go, there's a chain of authority; a corporate ladder. Most often, the higher the rung you're on, the further you are removed from your company's/business'/organization's (etc.) most basic mission; the customers, the product, the service.

In my case, its the welfare and safety of crazy kids.

Those of us on the bottom rung, we spend the most time observing and interacting with the 'patrons of our services.' We usually know what they need and how to meet those needs far beyond anyone else involved, yet we have the smallest amount of influence in decisions made. Decisions that have consequences. Consequences that we have to experience hands on. It's not a report we have to read, or paperwork we have to file. It's our faces being spit on. Our hands being bitten. It's us that have to somehow make it all okay and keep everyone safe.

We make it through those tough days somehow. Miracles, I guess. But why should we depend on miracles when the crisis' are preventable in the first place? The decision makers, they're removed. The way they experience the consequences of their choices is from behind their desks; most likely passing the responsibility and ownership of the problem to their subordinates.

Today I wanted to shake those decision makers and scream in their faces; tell them to get a clue, ask them where their instinct or intuition or gut-feelings were... but ultimately, I know they won't get it. They don't have to get it. They don't need to get it. The consequences are ours, not theirs.

Again, I know this kind of thing exists everywhere. But these aren't unhappy customers or faulty products or sub-par services; it's a some unsafe kids. I'm ranting. And exaggerating. But dang!

Days like today... sigh

I really laughed out loud at this...