Archive for March, 2007

What’s Up With Me

March 30, 2007 3 comments

Here’s a snapshot of my life right now…

  • I started working as a flower delivery man for Lynde Greenhouse and Nursery to make some extra cash in April. This means I am delivering plants from 7:30 am until noon, and then working at the restaurant from 12:oo pm until 8:00 pm. 70 hours weeks. No fun but necessary to survive and start eliminating some of the debt that is crippling us.
  • I had applied and was hoping for an adjunct teaching position at Bethel University. Found out this week that someone was hired for a one year, full-time position. The hiring erased the need for adjunct professors.
  • Stephanie and I are hoping and praying that God would lead us and open up some critical doors in the next couple months.
  • Tonight I went to work-out with Stephanie at the Monticello Community Center. As soon as I took some strides on the treadmill my body starting scream at me, “NO!” Instantly my calf started to hurt and my hip started throbbing. I made it 18 minutes, running 1 and 3/4 miles before I had to step off the motorized torture tool. Then as I walked away I almost fell down because my whole body felt like it was still moving at treadmill speed.
  • Really bummed out about some junk that my friend and his wife are going through right now. One of those instances where you wish you could just wave a magic stick and make it all go away.
Categories: Fun, Life

Life is Pushes Down the Tubes

A young woman that I work with expressed some anxiety today about what her life might be like after she graduates high school this spring. She wondered, “What if my life goes down the tubes?”

It made me think. Life doesn’t just go down the tubes by itself. Rather, we determine the direction of our lives with the decisions we make, the people we spend time with, the places we go, the things we intake and allow to form us, and the passions/desires we pursue and let dominate us. Sadly, many people think that they are nothing more than victims of time or chance, and so they live like there are no future consequences to the chooses they make now.

It is a non-negotiable rule of life that when you takes steps in a certain direction you will make progress towards the end goal of that pathway. Therefore, if you don’t like what lies ahead of you in the direction you are walking, then you must turn around and start walking in a new direction.

This is exactly what Biblical repentance is all about. As people separated from God we are walking with our backs to God on a pathway that leads to destruction. Jesus call is for people to turn around and walk back towards God. However, because we are people marked by sin we cannot do this alone. Therefore the Holy Spirit guides and directs us giving us the gift of faith to believe and trust in Jesus Christ.

Life does not end up down the tubes, we push it there.

Categories: Life, Theology

Bringing Sexy Back

Has the church become too focused on sex? This guy doesn’t think so.

Categories: Ministry

The Central Questions My Kids Are Asking

March 28, 2007 1 comment

(picture stolen from Stephanie’s blog)

Stephanie has been working hard with Isabelle over the last week to get her potty trained and we are experiencing some good results. Jacob didn’t get the toilet thing until he was 3. Isabelle is less than 2.5, but I hear girls usually catch on faster and Izzy is very girly. So girly in fact that the last two times her Nana has given her money she has picked out and purchased dress up shoes and the princess dress she is wearing above. Izzy loves to play in her mommy’s make-up and she is constantly using the phrase “That is so cute.” It is especially adorable (and, I think, very revealing about the feminine soul) how Isabelle will ask me, “Am I a princess?”. Which of course she is!

Jacob, on the other hand, is all boy. He wants to play outside, ride his bike, and wrestle. With his gift money he bought a toy shark and a toy T-Rex. Jacob loves to imagine his animals doing battle. The constant question Jacob asks is not like Isabelle’s “Daddy am I beautiful?” Jacob seeks my pleasure in himself, he wanted to impress me and show me he can do things. He is constantly asking, “Daddy are you proud of me?” Which of course I am!

All of my kids are so different (I can only imagine what Andrew will be like as he grows older) but I believe that there are some fundamental things that they are seeking from their mother and me. And my job as a parent is to meet those essential emotional needs. With God’s grace I am doing my best.

PS- The thought that I only have one more kid in diapers is very exciting.

Categories: Andrew, Isabelle, Jacob, Parenting

10 Preaching Tips

Project Management Source has created a list of 27 tips to help you improve your public speaking. Here are 10 that can help you preach better:

1. Know your audience.
“Prepare [a sermon] that is understood and appreciated by those listening.”

4. Personalize your sermon.
“Most people will relate and respond better to your [sermon] when you combine the facts with a collection of interesting tales and examples.”

6. Stick to time limits.
“If you find yourself running late, know beforehand what you can afford to omit. In case you run short, be prepared with additional material that goes with the flow of your [sermon].”

9. Make a strong start.
“Start off on the right foot with your very first words and you’ll find that it’s easy to hold on to your audience’s attention for the rest of the [sermon].”

10. Watch your body language.
“It’s what you don’t say that tells the most about you.”

11. Maintain eye contact.
“Look at your audience, not through or beyond them when you talk.”

12. Pace yourself.
“Speak slowly and steadily so that you are understood.”

20. A few moments of silence are not a crime.
“You don’t have to fill every second with words. It’s acceptable to pause and gather your thoughts or sip water before you resume speaking.”

22. Work on your tone and delivery.
“Know when to raise and lower your tone as well as which words to stress. Your energy is infectious and your audience will react to it. Use the tone of your voice to grab their attention and hold it.”

25. Finish well.
“A perfect finish should not be abrupt or leave the audience wondering if there’s more to come.”

(HT: Church Relevance)

Categories: Preaching

It Shouldn’t Matter, But…

Craig Groeschel has a great series of posts going under the title “It Shouldn’t Matter, But…” He says,

In the church world, there are a bunch of things that shouldn’t matter, but they often do.

Check them out.

Part 1 – The Church’s Environment
Part 2 – How the Pastor Dresses

Categories: Ministry

A Question

March 27, 2007 3 comments

Why do I look forward to putting the kids down to sleep at night only to miss them once they are dreaming?

Categories: Family