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Showing posts from November, 2005

Christmas Spirit Breaker

Today my company is a drop off point for Food and Toys for the needy. Half of the county police department is here, tents and tables are set up, food is being served, TV and radio will soon be here, Chrisrtmas music is blaring in the background, and something is just not right. It is the weather.

It is warm, humid, and 70 degrees here in Lexington, SC. I have prayed for cold weather; I have contacted my relatives in Wisconsin and asked them to send snow. All to no avail. The humidity is so thick I can hardly breathe. This is supposed to be November, isn't it?

I have lived in the south for 30 years, and my Wisconsin blood has never been able to adjust to this climate. I'm trying, but I cannot seem to feel Christmas cheer while perspiration rolls down my back.

Sick out, and Bruce Willis is still cool

Every couple of years the "crud" wreaks havoc with my immune system. I have been feeling less than great for about a week now. It usually lasts 5-10 days. Sinus, throat, chest, ears, and no sleep. Even Nyquil is falling short this time. May have to resort to the Sonny Corleone remedy, "get a little brandy, and sweat it out." Yuck.

At any rate, today is a special day for my oldest and dearest pal, James. He has reached the big 3-8. I will be following suit in a matter of days. We are celebrating 30 years of a childhood friendship that means more to me than words or blogs can express. Happy birthday, and Yippie Kai Yay, brother!

How cool that Die Hard was on last night. It really boosts the Christmas spirit!

Back to bed now.

Turkey Day Traditions

Happy thanksgiving, dear reader. May I add, thank you, for reading my blog. I sometimes get comments from people I don't know, and I think that's cool. That someone would even take the time is an honor to me. So, thanks!

My favorite Turkey Day tradition is not the turkey and/or the trimmings. The family time can be nice, but that's not it either. My two favorite traditions for thanksgiving are:

1) The Macy's Parade, and
2) Watching Home Alone thanksgiving night. I still laugh at the same things after all these years. My kids do too...well, my son does. The apple didn't land far from the tree.

Someday I will actually go to NYC and watch the parade in person. Until that day, I will merely be content to listen to Katie, Matt, and Al while enjoying the best seat in the house, and never have to do it alone.

I Feel Vindicated

The other day I posted on one of my least favorite preachers, Robert Tilton. Did I say, "Preacher?" I meant to say scam artist. The following link made me feel so good! Enjoy...and feel the power!

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-2453217212869715744

One of the greatest has gone home

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In my ministry career, I have heard some of the finest preachers on earth. One of the greatest of the great passed away last week. How the news got by me is a mystery, but the passing of Dr. Adrian Rogers gives us some tough shoes to fill.My fondest memory of Dr. Rogers was hearing him speak at a Pastor's Conference in Jacksonville, FL in 2000. He spoke of how he had sat beside Muhammed Ali in his hotel room and shared Jesus with him. He was truly one of the greatest preachers ever. His commanding presence in the pulpit, his ability to tell a story, and his ability to break down the immortal Truths of God's Word have always been an inspiration to me in my own pulpit ministry. He will be greatly missed.

Church Signs 3

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And if you keep using this ridiculously worn out church sign, I will not likely be back!Do you want to know what is REALLY missing in Church? Honor, loyalty, compassion, reverence for God of the things, not the so-called things-of-God, genuine worship, friendship, understanding, Truth, and consequences.Pity that the Mafia has a handle on these things and the Church does not. What is missing in church? Jesus. But He is coming back. Could be today. Now is the time to love Him and grow up in Him. The Bible says, "BE ready," not "GET ready."Maybe church needs to be the place where believers can BE together, and not just GET together.Perhaps church could be the place where believers come to BE a blessing rather than GET a blessing.Will we ever GET it?? I hope so.

Thanksgiving Thoughts

First, I apologize that I couldn't conjure a better title than this. But I am trying.

My pal, Rick posted on Thanksgiving today, and I was inspired to shamelessly copy him, rather than be original or creative.

Today I went to my children's school to watch one of my daughters give a presentation in her Gifted & Talented class. It was great, of course (proud parent to the core). I was sitting there, watching my daughter and her peers do their thing, and I began to flashback to when she was just a baby and sort of "watched" her grow up again in my memories to today.

I am so thankful that I have been able to be at just about every major event in my children's lives. Moreover, they have been there for mine, too. Furthermore, I am thankful that they still want me there. I am greatly blessed with phenomenal children. They are my heart, and my raison d'etre.

For as long as I can remember, I wanted to be a Daddy. I can honestly say that I would do anything f…

Church Signs, Part 2

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Are you kidding me? Are you now beginning to see why my hindquarters are chapped over church signs? I actually saw this one on a church sign in my neighborhood. In fact, it was the very church where I was pastoring at the time. When I drove by and saw it, I was horrified and immediately changed it, which went over like a you-know-what in church. At the time, the deacons took turns each week changing the sign. The fellow who's turn it was to change the sign on this occasion obviously possessed a "works" mentality and not one of grace. In his arrogant opinion, if you were not working in the church, you were "useless" (a direct quote). I blatantly disagreed, and continually proclaimed a message of grace and acceptance. People do not come to church looking for a job, they are looking for Jesus, and did NOT see it in this man's life. Sadly, the author of this sign became one of the largest thorns in my side in this church. He finally left after three very unsucc…

Church Signs, Part 1

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Today I want to begin a short series of blogs on "Church Signs That Really Chap My Hindquarters." We see them all over town, especially here in the tightest notch of the Bible Belt. Every day I see at least one church sign that makes me just want to call someone at the particular church and say, "Bet THAT sign really brings 'em in this week." You see, I am of the firm belief that church signs are not the place to broadcast crusty old church sayings. If I were an unchurched person and read some of the signs I've seen, I'd keep right on driving by. So anyway, off we go, with one of my personal non-favorites:

"Give God What's Right, Not What's Left."

Much to my shock and horror, the world of televangelism has allowed Robert Tilton back on the air. Most unchurched people think the church is already after their money anyway because of morons like brother Tilton and so many others. When I was 16, I ordered a set of Jerry Falwell's teaching…

BLAH-g

Kinda melancholy today. Still bummed at the passing of Eddie Guerrero. Still waiting on a big commission check. All the usual tried-and-true sources of comfort and reassurance are not working, so I will need to dig deeper. However, work intrudes. So much is up in the air for me at this moment. Need to pay some bills and take a vacation. I'd love to just drive to the mountains for the day and ponder some of the things I am bummed about. I need to go to the dentist; I am long overdue for a checkup. I need a new prescription for my glasses. I need to lose about 30 pounds. I am not sleeping well.

I have the upcoming weekend off. No kids! Maybe I can recharge and reboot. A long nap may be in order.

In Memoriam

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Last night the world of professional wrestling lost one of the truly great ones. Eddie was one of my favorites. I have shared the ring with his older brother, Hector. I never met Eddie personally, but Hector shared with me how Eddie's faith in Jesus Christ was the driving force of his life. WWE is not a Christian organization by a long shot, but I took great comfort that there were sheep amidst the wolves like Eddie Guerrero. His life and career were an inspiration. Wrestling will never be the same without him.

Control vs. Community

Allow me to be perfectly blunt: I am fed up, yes, FED UP with the local church. Where did the concept of the "local" church come from anyway? It is not in the Bible, that is certain. There were no denominations in the ancient times. There was "one church, one baptism, one faith." Since everyone couldn't be everywhere all at once, they congregated in local groups, where they "had everything in common." They shared their stuff with everyone. And the church grew spiritually and numerically, and the Word of the Lord spread.

Why did we change it? Did we feel the need to improve on God's design?

Perhaps it is a matter of control. Church history (too lengthy to recount on my humble blog) demonstrates that throughout the centuries, the Church in her various forms, led by well-intended individuals or groups, have created a system of control rather than a community of believers.

Have you ever tried to join a local church? Some are fairly simple. Others will ha…

Comfort Zone Defense

"To be comfortable with uncertainty is to be free to grow and change."

I work for straight commission. I have not had a day off in 17 days. For 12 weeks I have been working 45-50 hours a week for free. When the commissions come, it will be huge, but each day is faced with the question, "Will I get paid today?"

I have two choices:

1) Grow where I am planted, or
2) Find a "normal" job.

I have chosen to grow here at LCB. I have never loved a job so much. I could not ask for a better work environment, or a better caliber of people to work with. I am planting seeds, and seeds take time to germinate, take root, and then blossom.

I am learning patience in a whole new way. My new "comfort zone" is one of uncertainty. It has remade me as a person.

Quantum Bleep

My co-worker recommended a movie to me called, "What the Bleep Do We Know?" Check out the site if you dare. www.whatthebleep.com

The movie is a combination of a poorly developed storyline mixed with most of the lectures I slept through in college. At the end of the movie, I found myself asking, "What the bleep was this about?"

Bleep deals with the human brain and quantum mechanics. As a devoted Star Trek fan, I have done my own research on quantum mechanics, and for what its worth, I was in agreement with the scholars from the film, with the exception of the chubby blond lady who claimed that we are all God. Poppycock.

The film's premise that we create our own reality by what we think was written a long time ago when Paul said, "Be transformed by the renewing of your mind." The computer acronym GIGO applies here, too. Garbage in, garbage out is true for the brain as well as a computer. Proverbs 22:17 says that "as a man thinks in his heart, so is he…

Question of the day...?

Have you ever felt that the world is a tuxedo and you are a pair of brown shoes?

Halloween Humbug

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Somehow I lost the excitement of Halloween this year. My kids went Trick-or-Treating with their mother. My step kids went with their mother, and I sat home alone. We had bought no candy, and I intentionally left all the lights off, so as not to draw T-or-T-ers to my home.

Between 6:30 and 7:15 pm, the doorbell rang at my house no less that 12 times.

"Look, Mommy, a house with no lights on. Maybe they have candy! Let's ring the doorbell several times and see!"

Relaxing upstairs in my room in an empty house, fighting the urge to answer the door with a flamethrower, I made use of my rare quiet time on Halloween counting the number of rings at my unlit doorbell.

To top it off, I forgot to watch "The Great Pumpkin." Can't wait for Thanksgiving!