miPod

Used my iTunes gift card to purchase Stavesacre’s How to Live With a Curse. The album has been out for a while and the band actually broke up a while back… but the album is amazing. Mark Soloman is, hands down, my favorite singer. The whole album is good. Just good, clean, driving, rock!

Amazing album!

You can listen to some of the tracks here if you want to check it out.

Just thinking

“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence , if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” Philippians 4:8

I think that there is something more to this verse than just positive thinking. While, yes, this verse often reminds me to stop focusing on the negative all the time, I can’t help but think that it has to be more than just some good ole Dr. Phil think happy – be happy crap.

I think what stands out to me the most is that there are few things in this life that encompass all of the above. For example, you might know a judge who is just in his job however is not pure in his family affairs. Or, you might see a lovely flower that is fatally poisonous when eaten. Both examples have admirable traits that Paul says to think about, however, they also have flawed and negative traits.

So, as I thought about this scripture today I began to realize that the true and purest example of all of the above is found in our glorious King Jesus. Can I encourage you that when times are difficult and you’re down in the dumps, to think on the most pure, lovely, just, honorable, commendable, true, and worthy of praise thing you can… namely Jesus.

Earlier in the week I was a little down in the dumps, missing my friends in VA. As I realized that my meditation on my sadness was not all that productive I began to fix my eyes upon Jesus. As I thought about Jesus and all that he has done for me I was reminded that he too was acquainted with the pain of leaving a place he loves. My king left the very throne of heaven to come and live and die on this earth… While there are lots of things that could have helped me through that tough day, the greatest help was to stare at Jesus and think about him.

I think that Paul is not merely saying to have a positive attitude… but rather he is saying we need to dwell on the very one who is most worthy of praise. Jesus.

O soul, are you weary and troubled?
No light in the darkness you see?
There’s a light for a look at the Savior,
And life more abundant and free!

-Refrain-
Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.

Through death into life everlasting
He passed, and we follow Him there;
Over us sin no more hath dominion—
For more than conquerors we are!

His Word shall not fail you—He promised;
Believe Him, and all will be well:
Then go to a world that is dying,
His perfect salvation to tell!

Hel­en H. Lem­mel, 1922

Am I Found

I’ve been thinking about baptism again lately (no, i have no deep understanding or insight into the subject) & emailing with a friend on the subject. This exchange reminded me of a conversation I had with Asher a couple weeks ago.

i was driving w/asher & grace & he wanted to sing amazing grace. when we sing this he often asks, “what are we lost from momma?”. so we talk about how sin separates us from God ect. this particular instance he focused more why sin separates us & on being “found”.

are you found momma?”

“yes, i am”.

Quiet.

am I found momma?”

So then we talked about what it meant to be “found”….that we Love God & Jesus and that we want Jesus to be in charge of us. He said in that case that he is apparently ‘found’.

along the line of covenant children thinking i’ve thought (thus far, no idea if i’m right) that, well, who are we to judge whether or not our children are really saved? and further, are we to teach them to doubt their salvation/connection to the holy spirit (in light of some not being willing to baptize young children)? i tend to take the opposite approach in that, i don’t expect my children to have a moment of conversion. i will treat them as christians unless/until they prove otherwise. i think in our culture we tend to emphasize the “moment”, thus making it awkward for kids who grew up in strong christian households when it’s time for our “testimonies”. but for everyone it’s a process. even those of us who have an actual date & time that we prayed a prayer (which many adults don’t even have, they just know that somewhere along the line they realized they believed in & loved Christ)…. so perhaps that was his “moment”…or maybe it was just when he recognized where he already stood…or maybe he had no idea what he was talking about and thinks Grace is just an amazing sister. Regardless, it was a precious little conversation.

Energy Drink

I love Red Bull. For me, when I’m really dragging, it works like a charm… however, my granola wife isn’t fond of all the junk in it…

So, I found this today and am going to give it a try. Apparently this is some all natural energy drink that is endorsed by Lance Armstrong. Even better is that you get a free trial of like 10 different products for the price of shipping.

Seems like a reasonable offer… I’ll let you know what I think.

Wanna Try some with me?

Need All Day Energy?

Season’s 52 5k

Asher & I ran our races this morning. It was lots of fun. I attained my goal (I was shooting for a 27min finish & my chip time was 26:49) & therefore have 2 updates to my “records” over to your right. Ryan apparently had a good shot of me coming in to the finish but the camera locked up, so this is the best you get.

momma-racing.jpg

Asher got a little shy at the last minute, but as long as i stayed next to him (that’s Grace’s foot top right corner) he finished his 100meters with gusto. He “won” a small stuffed animal & a blue finisher’s ribbon. Before nap he said, “maybe next time I won’t be so shy”.

asher-racing.jpg

That was the first road race I ever ran without my dad…course it was also only the 4th one I’ve ever run. Oh, & fyi: The Monument Ave crowd still wins for most fun & inspiring….though I appreciated the guy offering krispy kreme from his yard at 1.5 miles, shouting, “carb up for the last mile & a half!”.

Ben Stein

I saw Ben Stein in an German airport about 6 years ago. He was eating in the food court. He was wearing a suit and chucks.

In other Ben Stein news, he’s got a movie coming out this spring that looks very interesting.

When I don’t matter, it’s easy to feel important

The past few weeks I have been studying the book of James “with” my bible study friends back in Richmond. They’re still meeting Wednesday nights at Starbucks, I just email (well…in theory…sorry Dana..).

A few days ago I was on James 4:11-17. Sort of been stuck there & today I was meditating on vs. 13-17.

I enjoy thinking about the tension between living in the here & now & appreciating it for all it’s worth & yet also being responsible to plan for the future. It’s so easy to get stuck in one or the other frame of mind. In particular I think a lot about how we get stuck trying to do or be something really great & miss out on our own private little pockets of “really great” that perhaps the rest of the world will never know about.

Vs. 14:

What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes

As Gary Thomas talks about in the book, “Sacred Parenting”, it’s actually kind of liberating to acknowledge and embrace your insignificance.

When I embrace my historical insignificance, I am set free to concentrate on very real – and eternal – relational significance. I matter to my wife. I am very important to my children. I have a secure standing as an adopted son of the Most High God. …this is where I want to spend my energy.

I am never going to receive a nobel prize for my homemaking endeavors. But I can honestly say I feel like a superstar in my home. I know my labor matters here….being in a right standing relationship with God & therefore doing and being who I was created to do and be.

That was sort of a rabbit trail from what I gathered as the main point of the section, but that’s where my mind kept wandering when trying to focus on the section.