Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The Real Zeal!

Beka's parents were in for the past few days here in the Burgh. Naturally it was great being with family. Dennis (my father in law) helped me out with a few projects around the house because I break things when I have tools in my hands. We offered them the big bed to sleep in but they insisted on sleeping on the air mattress in the spare bedroom. I bought this air matress a few months ago and already need to use the warrenty because it has a leak that we can't find. They were definitly good sports about it but every morning they would wake up on the floor on an empty matress.

My Father in Law, my Dad, and my Grandfather are all pastor's. God has given them an irrevocable call to preach and they have all obeyed fully. I am inspired, angered, touched, and tormented everytime I hear their stories. Some of the situations they have been in with people in the ministry make me question how they've kept their sanity, let alone stayed in the pastorate. I have only been in the ministry for a decade which seems very small compared to them. I have found that my joy can leak out like a broken air matress and I have no idea what might have caused it.

With the pressure of people looking at every angle of your life it isn't hard for anyone to find where you suck. Many times people in the ministry feel overwhelmed by the task at hand, under appreciated for the work that is being done, and having a feeling of total vulnerabilty. On top of that add potential problems with co-workers, fellow parishiners, and the high ranking dark spirits. I met with a friend for coffee last week who has impenetrable positivity. I am always intrigued by others who seem undaunted in task and relationship so I asked him how he keeps his joy in tact. He gave me a peice of advice to ponder while in formation. "Fake it till you make it." Sounds good and practical especially when doubled up with a tidbit I heard from John Maxwell this last week... "Belief is the lifter." Tonight I read a blog from the resurgence entitled Milestones to Maturity which allowed me to see another peice to the puzzle. The main point in part three of which I read tonight was gaining your own zeal. It is said of Titus that he followed Paul and Barnabus around helping out in anyway that was needed even menial tasks. Here is an excerpt:


Take a look at what Paul says of Titus: "But thanks be to God, who put into the heart of Titus the same earnest care I have for you. For he not only accepted our appeal, but being himself very earnest he is going to you of his own accord. As for Titus, he is my partner and fellow worker for your benefit." (2 Corinthians 8:16-17, 23)

What a jump! Titus goes from being the tag-on servant-hearted guy to a leader in his own right whom Paul now speaks of as "my partner and fellow worker." How did this radical promotion happen? Answer: Titus gained his own zeal.

At Milestone 3 something clicks, and we develop zeal, enthusiasm, and initiative derived directly from God. We begin to do things not primarily because we are told to or asked to, but because God's zeal is welling up inside us and becoming our own zeal. The things that God and Paul were passionate about had now also become Titus' passion. He owned the mission for himself. At Milestone 3 our fire is stoked from within us by God more than by a "Paul" outside of us.


Not only is an unrelenting dependancy on God an absolute necessity but we must believe that our mission from God in the world is critical. As a grow in the Lord I am faced with the reality that my belief quotiant can be drained from a number of things. I won't try to name them but it is definitly enough to fill up a few pages.

I don't know how to end this entry any other way but to stop typing.. I will have to finish my thought later. Sorry if it seems a little scattered. I'm tired from driving back from Ohio.

Friday, June 19, 2009


I would like to have seen Jesus a little higher on the list but it's a start.

Monday, June 15, 2009

The Least Influential Music Video Ever


Immediately upon viewing the rough footage, Jan Terry realized she had made a horrible mistake hiring the Diff'rent Strokes crew to direct her music video.

Friday, June 12, 2009

How Well Do You Know Your Spouse?

Beka is an ESFZ according to the Golden which is similar to the Meyer's Brigg's. That means she is Extraverting, Sensing, Feeling, and organiZing. Her strengths (Clifton Strengthsfinder) are Belief, Developer, Relator, Responsibility, and Achiever.

All these terms may seem a little stale but they are true in real life. God has blessed her by making her totally unique and special to me and many others. I love her for who she is as well as being an awesome mom for our children. She deserves many posts a day and more than I give her in life.

I love you babe!

*isn't she lovely?*

Do You Have a Good Attitude?

Here is a quote that sounds good but I have not come to a solid decision about it yet from Maxwell's "The Winning Attitude".

"Casey Stengal, a successful manager of the Yankee's, understood the power of associations on a baseball player's attitude. Billy Martin remembers Stengal's advice to him when Martin was a rookie manager. "Casey said there would be fifteen players on the team who will run through the wall for you, five who will hate you, and five who are undecided," Martin said. Stengal added, "When you make your rooming list, always room your losers together. Never room a good guy with a loser. Those losers who stay together will blame the manager for everything, but it won't spread if you keep them isolated."

The "losers" of course are the one's who don't like the manager. This is not always accurate seeing that the "manager" can and will be in the wrong at times. It is way too easy for us in leadership to label people as losers if they are not for us. We don't have that luxury in the church to cast people off so quickly. Sometimes a good dose of humility can change a person's perception of us and sometimes there isn't a thing in the world you can do to win a person's approval.

Even though I have given the "losers" the benefit of the doubt in this post, there is something to be said of Titus 3:9-11:
9 But avoid foolish controversies and genealogies and strife and disputes about the Law, for they are unprofitable and worthless.
10 Reject a factious man after a first and second warning,
11 knowing that such a man is perverted and is sinning, being self-condemned.

Leave no reason for a person to reject you especially if he or she speaks from a bad heart or
references false claims. But if that person speaks truthfully and can and wants to help you must
listen. Here are a few points from a sermon I preached last Sunday night.

How to handle criticism:
1. Listen to constructive criticism
2. Answer misinformed criticism
3. Dismiss wrongful/false criticism from overly critical/hurting people

New Experiences + Teaching Applications x Love = Growth

Cameron got a gift card from a friend to Wal-Mart. He wanted to get a game for the Wii and we said that was cool. The one he picked out was a "Sonic" game which we are familiar with so it wasn't a problem. He was reading the back of the game by the content rating which was Rated E10+. It got that rating becasue of Animated blood and Fantasy Violence. Number one I felt bad becasue I didn't read the label as well as I should have (which has gotten me into trouble before) and Cameron was the one to discover this on the rating.

First we took the game back before purchasing it and secondly I praised him for noticing that about the games rating. Hopefully he will keep his honesty through the pre-teen years.

Today I am reading from one of Maxwell's books, "The Winning Attitude". Here is a littel tid-bit from a chapeter I went through that expalins what can and should happen on a daliy basis in terms of raising a non year old boy (or any child for that matter).

New Experiences + Teaching Applications x Love = Growth

Way to go Cameron - Dad is proud of you!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

I have a baby Deer

This little guy and his sister started to walk near when I was walking towards him in my backyard until mommy made a snorting sound and took off. I got about 8 feet away - pretty cool.

Must Love Dogs

Only a mother could love this face - or a pug lover. This is my friends dog and that is his real tongue.

Sunday, June 7, 2009


I. LOVE. ICE. CREAM. PERIOD. We have had our share of ice cream scooper's in our home and have lost all of them due to the hard nature of our ice cream. One man size dip and they break. I don't like that soft stuff - give me an iron clad scoop of Double Fudge Brownie any day but don't think about dishing me up some Breyer's imitation Chocalate as soft as a tender peice of veal. My ice cream needs something hefty to do the work. That is why this honey of a scooper found it's way into the drawer. Kitchen Aid gets my vote for best in utencils becasue of this ingenoiuos design! This is the kind that will stand the test of many desserts to come enough to make it "heirloom" status. It's one thing to have Grandpa's old toolbelt but it's another thing to have Grandma's kitchen-ware.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Here's Your Sign

Not that the byline has anything to do with what I'm blogging about but I saw this sign after listening to Erwin
McManus sermon entitled "Reclaim Your Life". His final statement was pretty cool when he said "While your busy reclaiming your life, Jesus is more concerned with reclaiming you and give you his life."

Free Cat

I had to laugh when I saw this. I was in Ohio today when I remembered that this grease spot was a furry black and white cat who spent all nine lives over two years ago at this exit.

The first time I saw it was on the way back from Skyline chili with a few friends over lunch. I would pass it on the way to drop off and pick up the kids from school and no one ever took it upon themselves to move it. I guess it was funny to everyone to see it wither away to a clump of fur.

You can almost see the outline...

Made in the USA?

Leaving our house today in Ohio I found the time piece my brother got me for being best man in his wedding. It is a nice watch but I noticed under the half dollar with the stout eagle strutting his patriotism on a watch made in Japan. Love you man!

Have you ever seen this color moth?

I saw this pumping gas in Mansfield. Weird.