Jun 23, 2004

News flash! This just in! Pastors love to hear themselves talk!

Rare is the minister who is a listen-junkie. Those of the cloth know no bounds when it comes to the realm of oration. Methinks this to be one of the reasons mouth pieces become mouth pieces. Talkaholics find it hard to sit in a church service without adding comment. This is among one of my reasons for becoming a preacher. I figured that if I was going to sit in church for the rest of my life, then I better be the one talking or I'm going to go nuts. I hope you can taste the sarcasm. But, actually, this little jest contains multiple nuggets o' truth.

Jun 21, 2004

Let's Hear It for Cheesy Movies

Nothing takes my mind off things that are important like a cheesy sci-fi movie. If I'm lucky, the movie takes place in a pseudo post-apocalyptic scenario that finds many of the characters wearing leather, swords, mohawks, and makeup. The hero is easy to distinguish amidst the other dregs of the post echelon. He's the one with the five o'clock shadow.
Whenever I sin I feel as if I spent my entire Saturday wasting my life watching those pathetic flicks while only supping upon overcooked Top Ramen. Frustration and disappointment overwhelm me. It is in that moment that I try and find some glimmer of hope that will give me reason to believe that I will not find myself wasting another Saturday watching Biker Fight @ Thermal Nuclear High!
My understanding of God's compassion toward me, his acceptance of me and his placing of my person within his kingdom (i.e. nobility), aids me in hope for a better day. Until then, I'll try my best not to hear the voice of Chicken Flavored Top Ramen call out to me.

Jun 17, 2004

The Wind Sucks

This town blows. Too much wind is not a good thing. After visiting the OC yesterday, I was taken about by my return trip to this wonderland. Why does the Antelope Valley excel in keeping people miserable. From car accidents, wind, and odd people to boredom, heat, and lack of green, this area begs to be put out of its misery.

Jun 16, 2004

Embracing the Presence of God

Whenever I have gone hiking and met someone on the trail they are always quick to say hi, chat for a bit, and then give me a tidbit of information about the trail. When I first was becoming a Christian I had the same experience. People on a spiritual journey would always say hi, chat for a bit, and then give me some advice on the road ahead. There's something about encountering God that drives many of us to share with others who are also on the journey. In fact, we'll even share with people who are not on the journey. We always prod those who are not with, what we think to be, convincing evidence, healthy stimulation, and a good dose of warning/consequences/judgment.
When we embrace the presence of God, either during worship, prayer or some sort of spiritual encounter, the journey becomes quite complex. We are confronted with an unusual sense of our own frailty coupled with a outpouring of grace, love, and forgiveness. The wonder factor that seems to emanate from our encounters leave us, at times, speechless. We then take this speechless expression and begin to share it with others. Odd--don't you think?

Jun 3, 2004

Car Crashes Suck

Yesterday, I met with the Moorers (Ericka's parents). They had just lost Ericka in a car accident last weekend. As we were exiting the office lobby, a car accident happened right in front of us. This caused great trauma to the Moorer family. I ran out to see what I could do and was caught off guard by the smell of brakes, tires, burning plastic and gas. There was some drunk yahoo in front of the accident cussing out the paramedics who had not arrived yet while directing traffic. What a turd. I checked with those involved with the wreck and saw that two of them were going into shock. The lady who was driving that car was more upset about the yahoo cussing than her pain. I told the yahoo to shut up. When I went to find the driver of the other vehicle, I noticed a Biola University sticker on the outside of the van. Once I found him, and learned that he was the reason for the accident because his prosthetic leg slipped off the gas pedal, I inquired about Biola University and mentioned that I knew someone who went there. He told me that it was his work van and owned by the Yriarte family. Matt Yriarte is the person I know at Biola. Go figure.

Jun 2, 2004

Emergent Meanderings Continued

I really want to like the whole Emergent Church thing. There are aspects to it that sound really cool. But, for whatever reason, it seems like a new band that is struggling to discover what type of music to play. Sure, one could wax eloquent about the numerous depictions of what the movement is about but there is still some crucial piece missing. Perhaps, it is the simple fact that I've been exposed to the whole pomo thing for years. Here in So Cal, pomo churches are just young and rocking churches. Maybe it is the corny way certain spokesholes talk about it. Everyone wants to be part of something great and this desire to make this EC thing happen could stem from that. Don't get me wrong. I really do dig a lot of the whole EC product. I just hope it emerges a bit more.

Jun 1, 2004

DVY: The Bold, The Beautiful, The Bodacious

There has been a lot of change going around lately. We have Matt Yriarte coming on staff soon, there's the everlooming youth building, we're getting ready for summer, we're still balancing being responsible for the college group and, the most exciting, rumor has it that many of us are getting in shape. Yet, we lack. Oh, dear sweet child o' mine, we lack. We need to work on our connecting/greeting students, we need to focus our leadership--with meetings/worship times, we need to sharpen our programs and basketball skills, we need, we need, we need ... Maybe we should change our dress code! How about cardigans and mu-muus!
This week launches a personal campaign of mine to make everything we do better and more effective. Since the Gate is off to a fairly good start, I can now focus more of my attention back to the Bold, the Beautiful, and the Bodacious!

Emergent Meanderings: Goatees, Candles, and PoMo stuff

It seems some people are emerging these days. That's mighty nice of them. In the next few months, I plan to delve wholeheartedly into what all this means from my vantage point. But, as of right now, I'm too tired to continue doing anything but sleep.

Hamster Attack

Today will be a day that will be remembered in infamy. My daughter, Morgan, was bitten by a hamster. Her one-year-old self could hardly take the pain. It was at that moment that she realized the folly of man and the foolish plight of all mankind--especially our redundancy. It was easy to see what she was trying to communicate to us through her tear stained eye. She hated life, and blamed every person for the tragedy that had befallen her. "Why," she probably murmured, "why, God, have you allowed this to happen to me?" The pain, the blood, the agony!