Friday, August 29, 2003

Please excuse me as I fall off the face of the earth this week :)

100 pages of history reading
100 pages of ECE reading
100 id's
6 outlines by next friday
a lap report
two ECE homeworks
a whole lotta grace of God ...

Peace out ... I'll try to let y'all know if I'm alive :) God's good, I have full confidence in His grace.

Wednesday, August 27, 2003

Matchbox Twenty is growing on me. I watched/listened to a live performance of Bright Lights. Very cool. I really like Rob Thomas as an artist. Muy cool.

---------

They've been times where everything speaks of God and his heart for you ... how he wants to shape your heart and your desires. Even the sun rising, class ending promptly, a delicious dinner, ... everything is something to be praising God for. But then at some point, the thankfulness and revelation of truth has to transform into your actions.

Inspiration and information without action and application is destined for stagnation.

"But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ.
8 More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ,
9 and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith,
10 that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death;
11 in order that I may attain to the resurrection from the dead.

Tuesday, August 26, 2003

So yesterday in history, I overhear this girl talking with another girl about relationships. Mind you, the whole class was listening. I'm not sure whether to be embarassed or offended, but this girl freaking does like full-disclosure within the hearing of the prof (who verbally acknowledges hearing all this) and the whole class. Anyway, she complains that its impossible to date just one guy, that she has to date four so she doesn't give that one guy too much attention. And, in dating four guys, it is so hard to decide which one to keep and a pain to continue leading the other guys on so she can get free dinners.

Right.

Though I might be going out on a limb, I will give the girl the benefit of the doubt that she's not all evil. Just a little misguided. Four guys!? Dang, it would suck to be one of the guys ... it sounds like some horrible "dating problem' you would run into in a girl magazine. Not that I would know what are in girl magazines *innocent look* -_-.. but wow, how can you be complaining when you're trying to date four guys ...

Monday, August 25, 2003

"Loneliness is never more cruel than when it is felt in close propinquity with someone who has ceased to communicate."
-Germaine Greer
Muahahahah ...

Attention, Frodo fanatics: Better load up on the popcorn and soda and invest in a comfy cushion--because you're in for a sore butt.

Two weeks before The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King wraps things up on December 17, New Line Cinema plans to unleash in theaters special extended editions of the first two installments in director Peter Jackson's epic adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien's fantasy trilogy.

Cinephiles who couldn't get enough of The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring special edition DVD, which clocked in at 208 minutes and included scenes not in the theatrical version, will be able to see the epic on the big screen in all its glory starting on December 5 in about 100 movie houses in the U.S. and 20 in Canada.

A week later, on December 12, New Line will unspool the special 214-minute extended edition of The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers. That version is slated to premiere as a DVD first on November 18 (the DVD of last year's "official" theatrical release is due out on Tuesday).

For those with serious Hobbit habits longing to venture into Middle Earth for more than a few hours, New Line plans to screen all three films back-to-back-to-back on December 16 in a daylong marathon that will carry over with The Return of the King's global release on December 17.

Per Daily Variety, New Line sent memos out to exhibitors across the country this week informing them of the reissue and suggesting various screening strategies to maximize promotion leading up to The Return of the King.

The goal, according to the studio, is not simply monetary, but it's intended to refresh moviegoers' memories of the good-vs.-evil saga that has been lording over the box office and critics' lists for the past two years.

"The release of the third film affords us a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to give audiences a compelling new theatrical experience of Peter Jackson's sprawling vision for this trilogy," Rolf Mittwg, New Line's head of worldwide distribution and marketing, told Variety.

The memo lays out guidelines for theaters calling for Fellowship to begin screening at 3 p.m. on December 16, Two Towers to follow at 7 p.m., and the first official showing of Return of the King kicking off at 11 p.m. and concluding early in the wee hours of the 17th.

The final installment is going to be the longest in the series, coming in at over three hours. Jackson promised fans in a recent USA Today interview that the climactic clash between Middle Earthlings and the fiendish Lord Sauron and his minions at Pelennor Fields will surpass Two Towers' Battle of Helm's Deep in breadth and scope.

Jackson says the most satisfying part of Return of the King will be the emotional climax, something he had to bring the entire cast back for additional shooting this spring and forced him to even rework some key scenes.

"Everybody feels we are paying off the story now," Jackson said. "The scenes tend to be more emotionally charged, which is why the actors enjoyed them and I enjoyed filming them. It absolutely has to be the best. We owe it to people."

New Line is banking on the Lord of Rings capper to build enough buzz to finally garner Jackson and his epic an Oscar. Despite a slew of nominations (Two Towers being the first sequel since The Godfather Part II to be nominated for Best Picture) and some wins in technical categories, the golden guy has proven elusive to the filmmaker. Many show-biz insiders believe the usually fantasy-averse Motion Picture Academy is waiting for the finale before anointing Jackson's work.

Regardless of whether Jackson stocks up his trophy case, his Rings cycle has put him in a league of his own.

The filmmaker recently sealed a deal with Universal Pictures for his next project, a massive retelling of King Kong that will see him earn $20 million up front as well as gross points on the back end, one of the most lucrative contracts ever for a director.

Advanced tickets for the rereleases are slated to go on sale in late September or early October via movie-ticketing sites like Fandango, Moviefone and Movietickets.com as well as exhibitor Websites.

Sunday, August 24, 2003

There is a large amount of ineffective Christian testimony among us
today. Much of it is well-intended, I am sure--honest and sincere. We
do the best we can with what we have. But our performance turns out
to be something like that of the salesman promoting fountain pens.
He tries to make a case for his product, but his would-be customers
know he really thinks ballpoints are far more practical.

Too much of our Christian witnessing is unconvincing because we have
not been convinced. We are ineffectual because we have not yet
capitulated to the Lord from glory. It is like the proselyte making
proselytes....

Perhaps this is happening because we are trying to plan how
everything should happen. Everyone of us reads a little how-to book
on witnessing. We try to do it the way we have been taught. But it
is perfunctory and without any contagious element. If angels can
weep, they must weep salty tears upon seeing a proselyte who has
never really met the Lord making another proselyte who will also
never meet the Lord. Faith Beyond Reason, 101-102.
ok ok ok ... I'm forcing myself to write this so I don't forget what happened ... I'm afraid this post is more for my benefit than yours, dear reader. :)

*grins* ... howdy y'all I'm back. Wow, well I'm back from a spur-of-the-moment hike to Half-Dome in Yosemite. It was a fantastic trip ... about 30 people went from Campus Crusade for Christ UCSD including some of the aptmates. Met some new people, it was pretty darn cool ... a lot of people invited friends and siblings, so there were a lot of new faces as well as old ones.

Alright, screw the coherent paragraphs and seamless transitions ... I'm just going to write.

------------

Honestly, this trip was really awesome ... the people who went were absolutely fantastic, and I got to see a side of people that you wouldn't otherwise see. The complaining and whining side of people (including myself), as well as people who persevered through the hike. The hike was 18 miles round trip ... 9 miles up and down. E. and his brothers had hiked it before and they broke down the hike up into 6 stages. Stage 1 quite honestly horrid. It consisted of a lot of rock stairs and fairly steep incline, and I decided to be a bit ambitious and took off with J., who was totally booking it (this was the word of the weekend ... "booking it"). Now when it comes to hiking, a steady walking pace is fairly fast pace for hiking, and we were going at a brisk walking speed. We passed a spectacular waterfall, I stopped several times just saying "Wow, that's pretty crazy." (As you can see, in moments of extravagant beauty I become extremely articulate...). But the catch was that we had to climb to the TOP of the waterfall. Fun stuff ... needless to say I was a bit tired once I reached the top of that waterfall. Thus concludes stage 1. Stage 2 and 3 are kind of a blur in my mind ... however, I do remember passing another waterfall. By the time we reached stage 4, our group had split into about 4 groups. The group that just scooted like no other, the first normal pace group, the second normal pace group, and the slower-than-normal-pace group. Stage 4 was pretty cakewalk with mostly flat land ... but stage 5. Dang stage 5 sucked too. Much like stage 1's steps ... but it was more granite, more steep, and more sucky. Near the first plateau before the cables to go up Half Dome, my left calf cramped really badly and I stumbled over the side to stretch it out. My leg was literally pulsalting as the the cramp slowly ebbed out ... and I got to the plateau.

The cable portion of the hike was NUTS. They have cables that you can pull yourself up the mountain with, it was just pretty crazy. You would just do better just to look at pictures to kind of get an idea what it was like ... Anyway, once we reached the top, that we spent like an hour an half, two hours at the peak just chilling. People started heading down then.

The descent was surprisingly longer than expected, and as exhilirating the trip up was ... it was pretty cool to see what ground we had covered on the way down. I found myself asking myself several times, "How the heck did we hike all this?" C. and I took off a little earlier than everyone else and took off on a brisk pace down the mountain. We didn't break too much, but once we reached our first waterfall (around halfway), we took off our shoes and socks and took a dip in the stream. FREEZING I tell you! Haha, it was definitely well worth it though. I brought a change of socks for the occassion, and then we continued heading down. This part went a lot faster because we started jogging a bit, and it was less hard on our legs and knees ...

--------

I think the biggest reason why this trip was so good was because God was just speaking to me so much during the trip. There were a lot of portions on the hike where I was able to be alone and just wait on God ... and he definitely downloaded a lot of stuff.

Honestly, I'm just a bit shaken up ... and I really don't know how to process all of it. I want to write a huge disposition on the ins and outs of all the little things he showed me, and why they hit me ... but right now my blabberings just aren't cutting it. All I know is that I went on the trip not explicitly seeking him, but having asked for him diligently the past week ... he interrupted me. And I return, definitely feeling refreshed, recharged, refocused ... and, I find that all I want is him. There's definitely a lot of stuff that I need to change and I need to think about .. but I think essentially, it comes down to me being more like Christ, and knowing the Father's heart.

I would share more, but like I said, its just a bit jumbled up right now.

-------


By the numbers:
800 -- about the number of miles we drove
18 -- miles that we hiked
10 -- number of times I soaked through my shirt with sweat
6 -- number of times I almost rolled my janky ankles
5 -- about the number of times I thought that I couldn't go any further
1 -- number of times I actually rolled my ankle (and then continued walking with pretty minimal pain)

--------

When everyone had returned from the hike, there were still a group of four girls that were missing. It was getting dark quick, and we were getting worried that they might be lost. A rescue crew was sent up to look for them ... and praise God .. they were all ok. Some may say it was coincidence or by sheer chance, but it wasn't by chance that they got down just before it got pitch black, that they were the only group who had been prepared enough to bring a flashlight.

-------

It was really cool how all 30 some odd of us made it to the top. Yes, some faster than others. But the greatest joy was for those who arrived last. I was struck by the perseverance of many during the tougher portions of the trail.

-------

I am so freaking sore. My legs are FEELING it. Shoulders from carrying my light backpack. Its a good sore .. but hey, deep tissue massage sounds REALLY good right now. Wheee :)

-------
More random and fragmented thoughts to come.

Friday, August 22, 2003

Going to Yosemite for the weekend. Will write laters :)

Thursday, August 21, 2003

Wow.

Your love is amazing.

Wednesday, August 20, 2003

Got my HILD midterm back today.

So, despite the grace that God afforded me on ECE ... I was somewhat annoyed at my performance on my HILD midterm. Haha, I kind of understand how the Israelites were complaining even when God was providing for them ... Sheesh God, you could have told me that my ECE quiz would be postponed so I could study more for history! I guess I forgot that God can provide not just for one class... but *gasp* ... both! Hehe, I'm a 'tard ... :) Anyway, I pulled off a B+, my "essay" that somehow managed to get 56 out of 60 points. I got mangled on the multiple choice portion, but so did the entire class. I'm in perfect position for an A at this point though, as D.H. so clearly reminded me.

Anyway, today promises to be long and filled with ECE and more ECE. Lab, homework, and Quiz!

-------
FDFN - DAY 3 - Wrestling for "need" so that its greater than my laziness.
Lovers will always outwork workers. -- Jaeson Ma

Brothers and sisters, don't even think of serving apart from intimacy with Christ. You will burn out quickly if your Christian works are not motivated by relationship. Works and service have never been God has required. He has desired and demanded relationship, first and foremost.

Some people say, "I haven't felt the presence of God in awhile." I heard once in response, "When's the last time God has felt your presence?" See, though God calls us and draws us near ... we still have to meet him halfway. He will tell us to meet with Him, but it is ultimately up to us to decide whether we will meet with him. It is no different than a relationship with another person. Yeah, sometimes God will come and interrupt our lives .. but by and large, it is up to us. Our response to his initiative.

Tuesday, August 19, 2003

Its time to crash ... its been a busy day. Still struggling to keep the balanced life yet do everything that is needed ... I'm starting to realize that not everything is needed :) Drop everything and ask God what to pick up.

Midterm went okay, its over and done with.... though after I found out that my ECE quiz was postponed to Thursday (which was definitely grace of God ... w00t w00t ...), I wish I had more time (hah! as opposed to studying harder ... woohoo progress...). Hit some "blah" moments today, which wasn't so great ... just had to persevere through those ... at any rate, the day is done and I have lab tomorrow.

God, shine through in my weaknesses.

Monday, August 18, 2003

Today, his questions came frequently, often mixed with his odd comments. "Why are there so many trees down there? That's a baby tree. Who cut down those weeds? Look, that weed is bigger than me! How come nobody cuts that one down?"

My best answers weren�t sufficient. Sometimes I just nodded, or said I didn�t know, or commented how that's interesting. Is God like this, too? We ask our silly questions or make our silly human comments because we don't know better, and does God just smile and nod?


-- Relevant Magazine
Bible Gateway : 1SAM 16:6-8;: "1 Samuel 16 6 When they arrived, Samuel saw Eliab and thought, 'Surely the LORD's anointed stands here before the LORD .' 7 But the LORD said to Samuel, 'Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The LORD does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.' 8 Then Jesse called Abinadab and had him pass in front of Samuel. But Samuel said, 'The LORD has not chosen this one either.'"

Sunday, August 17, 2003

"You know, George, the ocean called. They're running out of shrimp." --Riley
"Oh yeah, Riley? Well, the jerk store called. They're running out of you!" --George
"What's the difference? You're their all-time best seller." --Riley

c/o the X.

Saturday, August 16, 2003

�I don't wait for moods. You accomplish nothing if you do that. Your mind must know it has to get down to work� � Pearl Buck

Mm. Apparently the same thing is true for blogs :) If you wait for the brilliant thought to come to write it down, it'll never come.

As such, taking a quick break from studying. Been going pretty well ... been spending some time tackling ECE problems on my own and then praying when I got stumped. Imagine my surprise when the answer popped into my head shortly after I prayed. Hehe, been praying before every problem now. God's pretty cool ... Daniel must have gotten pretty amazed when God revealed knowledge to him, I wonder what that was like.

Things have been moving pretty fast paced ... but once again, God's good. Been struggling a bit to keep up on the academics, and sacrificing my social life for it. But this is what I signed up for when I took summer school...right? :-/ ... not quite sure how these things work out. You can't be there for everyone at once, and you certainly can't be everyone's friend. But say, isn't it your own fault if you never make the first move? Anyway, been kind of wrestling that in my mind for the past couple of days ... same thought as I have had as I've studied my life away the first two years. Now as I hit the halfway mark of my college career ... I suppose its 'bout time I get kind of a handle of this yeah?

I'm starting to realize exactly how addicted I am to weblogs :) ... there are some good addictions in this world ... but this probably isn't one. I checked several times a day when Xanga was DDoSed. That's probably a bad thing ... Granted, there are quite a lot of blogs which I find worth checking up on ... I would say that's my primary means of keeping in touch. But dang man, that's some sorry "keep-in-touching" ... gotta email or call more? *shrugs* Dunno, probably. How does that fit into everything else? Tack that onto the list from the previous paragraph.

Edit: Is it easier to keep up with people's lives by perusing their online journals or simply ask someone how they've been in person? Gee, you would hope the second is easier. Doh.

On a semi-random note (did you see that paragraph transition? holy cow! absolutely seamless ... fantasmic.), today's prayer meeting with the guys and gals was absolutely awesome. Struggled a bit just trying to figure out how to enter into worship as I led with the guitar. Felt like a bumbling fool really, had some tuning issues =P (thank God for people with better ears than I. T & Y, thanks). But finally gave up trying to do it myself (as I should have done in the first place), and just asked people to pray. Bottom line? Just miss God, missed His presence, missed praying out of the outflow of the Spirit, the peace of God. So yeah, all that jazz ... once I got honest with that, it was pretty awesome. We were chilling on the side of Mt. Soledad just worshipping ... people walking right by. Refreshed and invigorated.

Anyway, enough of a bumbling procrastination post. Hope this finds you well and you have a smile on your face. Or a silly grin.

The second one is better, by the way. :)
Borrowed from a friend ... who in turn borrowed it from a friend ...


Borrowed from a friend:

A.W. Tozer "Has it ever occurred to you that one hundred pianos all tuned to the same fork are automatically tuned to each other? They are of one accord by being tuned, not to each other, but to another standard to which each one must individually bow. So one hundred worshippers met together, each one looking away to Christ, are in heart nearer to each other than they could possibly be were they to become �unity� conscious and turn their eyes away from God to strive for closer fellowship.�

Personally we do not need to talk so much about unity as much as we need to talk about Jesus Christ and walk in His ways.

Thanks to the Wonderful shooting stars, and to a passionate talk about how guys should shape up, shut up, look up and live up the life so that the ladies won't have to come up with an alternative for Men of God.



I think this entry was written a little less than a year ago, but I like it ... so I thought I'd share.

On another topic ... I'm beginning to feel the fire. The fire of purification and santification and of testing.

When I use to run cross country, we would all line up and be ready. I always sprinted out pretty good and kept up with the pack. I knew people were watching, I was fresh and full of energy and nervousness, and excited to see how I would do. The first half mile was always good, breathing, running form, staying with the first 20 people or so, seeing your teammates and coach cheer you on. And the last half mile was always good as well. I always had a little saved up for a big kick in the end, always sprinted past people, the pain didn't matter, the soreness, the agony of the body was all rendered insignificant to the accomplishment of finishing. I could see the finish line, the people already there cheering me on, and the people along side me egging me on to go strong. I knew once I crossed that finish line I could stop, double-over and gasp for breath, I could get some water, be done for the rest of the day, and knew the feeling of accomplishment and doing well would be my reward for that day.

BUT if you ask anyone that competes or runs for that matter, they'll tell you its not how you start the race, or even how fast you can sprint the end, but its how hard did you run in the middle? During the other 2 miles inbetween did you stop? Did you sprint up the hill and race down it too? When no one was watching were you still running hard and fast? As you were tired, hurting, and out of breath did you keep running as if the prize was in sight? No fans to cheer you on, no glory of the finish line in sight, just you and a couple other guys. Some have fallen to the wayside. Some have doubled-over clutching their stomachs, others walk with a slight limp, some others jog at a walking pace with determination written on their faces, but still going no faster than a walk.

Its in those times you really see what you're made of. Jelly or cement, velvet or steel, will strength or apathy.

Paul says "Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air. No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize."
I Corinthians 9:25-27

This is written by the man who was imprisoned, flogged, received 39 lashes 3 separate times, shipwrecked, and stoned and assumed dead; and this man's resolved to pursue Christ could not be stopped by the mere physical and spiritual beatings he took. Paul beat his body more intensely and more brutally than anyone else could, he made it his slave; his body was in submission to his will, which was Christ's will. Training for Paul was intense, so the agony of the actual race didn't compare to the vigorous training.

So yea ... beginning to feel the heat of the fire, where character, perseverance, and faith in Christ are forged. As fire heats and melts gold, all the impurities in the gold rise to the top, to the surface for all to see, and after cooled the impurities are swept away. And then the process is repeated over and over, until nothing rises to the top anymore, the gold is pure; free of impurities. Like the most pure gold (24 carats?) is soft but strong. It is still a strong metal, but its moldable, it can be shaped and fashioned. Where as lesser grades of gold are hard and rigid, difficult to mold.

Paul knew this ... he probably should have coined the phrase "Pain is just weakness leaving the body." But that phrase doesn't do it full justice when applied to working out or training physically, but spiritually it makes a whole world of sense.

Welcome the fire, endure the pain, overcome, resist the temptations, do not give up, press on, go harder, run faster, pray more, rely on His grace, He is sufficient, persevere, hope, hold on to His promises, be faithful till death. For our hope is not in this world, but in Christ Jesus.
-- S.L.

Thursday, August 14, 2003

Cool story...

One of the best illustrations of the grace of God that I have ever heard came through a prophetic experience that a friend of mine named Bob Jones had. In this experience, he was caught up into another realm and saw the Lord. To his astonishment, the Lord took him to a baseball game. In this game, the Lord's team was playing Satan's team. The score was tied and it was the bottom of the last inning, there were two outs, and the Lord's team was at bat.

A batter stepped up to the plate and his name was "Love." Satan wound up, threw the ball, and Love knocked it into the outfield for a base hit, because "love never fails." Then the next batter stepped up to the plate and his name was "Faith." He also knocks the first pitch into the outfield for a base hit, because "faith works with love."

Then a third batter stepped up to the plate and his name was "Godly Wisdom." Satan wound up and threw the first pitch, but Godly Wisdom looked it over and let it pass. It was ball one. Then Satan threw three more pitches and Godly Wisdom let them all pass, because "godly wisdom does not swing at Satan's pitches." He walked and the bases were loaded.

Then the Lord turned to Bob and said, "I have been saving My greatest player for this time," and "Grace" stepped up to the plate. Bob said he did not look like much, and Satan's whole team relaxed. Satan threw the ball and Bob said that he had never seen one hit so hard. However, Satan's team was not worried because their center fielder, the prince of the air, did not let anything get by him. He went up for the ball and it went right through his glove, hit him in the head, and sent him crashing to the ground. The ball continued on over the fence for a grand slam. The game was won.

Then the Lord turned to Bob and said, "Do you know why Love, Faith, and Godly Wisdom could get on base, but they could not win the game? If your love, your faith, or your wisdom could win for you alone you would think that you had done it. Your love, your faith, and your wisdom can only take you so far. Only My grace can bring you home."
-- Rick Joyner

Wednesday, August 13, 2003

Christianity today is man-centered, not God-centered. God is made to wait patiently, even respectfully, on the whims of men. The image of God currently popular is that of a distracted Father, struggling in heartbroken desperation to get people to accept a Saviour of whom they feel no need and in whom they have very little interest. To persuade these self-sufficient souls to respond to His generous offers God will do almost anything, even using salesmanship methods and talking down to them in the chummiest way imaginable. This view of things is, of course, a kind of religious romanticism which, while it often uses flattering and sometimes embarrassing terms in praise of God, manages nevertheless to make man the star of the show. Man: The Dwelling Place of God, 27. - A.W. Tozer

Monday, August 11, 2003

Lessons that I learned today:
-- Study lecture notes.
-- Unless the prof. says so, don't assume.
-- You either pay now or pay later. Either way you gotta pay.
-- Studying the night before usually guarantees poor performance.
-- If you get drowsy studying, don't listen to your body.
-- I've learned all of this before.

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; and in all your ways, acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight." Proverbs 3:5

"29He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.
30 Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;
31 but those who hope in the LORD
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint."
Isaiah 40:29-31

Friday, August 08, 2003

Phil 3:13 Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it (the goal of union with Heaven). But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead

Even Paul recognized the weakness of his own position in God. He had seen incredible manifestations of the Kingdom, more than most of us have ever seen, and yet He was still not satisfied or finished. He was not holding on to what God did yesterday to dictate what He will do today. When Paul made this statement he was talking to mature believers. We too have to strain for what is ahead. It is time to break the ties of our soul to the past and press into Today! ...

.... It's a posture of humility that depends on God's understanding and not our own for what is to come. No matter what anyone has seen in this generation or read about in other segments of church history, including the first, it is not comparable to what the THUNDER of God is about to do in one generation.

God is allowing us a personal time to open our hearts and be healed of our unbelief and idolatry of what was, and in some cases what is, so that we can press into and strain for what is to come on earth and in heaven.
-- Shawn Bolz
*jumps up and down*

!@*($#(*@!#&!(*@$(!*% ... ahhh ... the tension!

Welcome to the planet
Welcome to existence
Everyone's here, everyone's here
Everybody's watching you now
Everybody waits for you now
What happens next? What happens next?


I dare you to move, I dare you to move
I dare you to lift yourself up off the floor
I dare you to move, I dare you to move
Like today never happened
Today never happened before


Welcome to the fallout
Welcome to resistance
The tension is here, the tension is here
Between who you are and who you could be
Between how it is and how it should be

Thursday, August 07, 2003

An image flashed across my TV screen
Another broken heart comes into view
I saw the pain, and I turned my back
Why can't I do the things I want to?
I am willing yet I'm so afraid
You give me strength
When I say

{chorus}:
I wanna be Your hands
I wanna be Your feet
I'll go where You send me
I'll go where You send me
I'll be Your hands
I'll be Your feet
I'll go where You send me
I'll go where You send me
And I try, yeah I try
To touch the world like You touched my life
An I'll find my way
To be Your hands

I've abandoned every selfish thought
I've surrender everything I've got
You can have everything I am
And perfect everything I'm not
I am willing, I'm not afraid
You give me strength
When I say...

This is the last time
I turn my back on You
From now on I'll go out
Send me where You want me to
I finally have a mission
I promise I'll complete
I don't need excuses
When I am Your hands and feet
I am Your hands and feet


I remember the first time I heard this song in high school, I got shivers all over ... It was for a Teen Mania missions video, and though it definitely has a missions bent to its lyrics, I realized today that its call to everyday obedience.

I've been hearing a lot about obedience lately; well, perhaps my spirit's just been more attentive to stuff about it. I've been praying a lot to hear God's voice, to know what He's saying ... but I've neglected to pray about what I do when I hear his voice.

So I prayed this morning that I would be obedient to His voice.

Remember how I mentioned that I'm realizing that I need to be careful what I pray for? Yup.
Haha .. praise God ... I've been at work since 8 and I haven't fallen asleep! Woohoo! :-D

Wednesday, August 06, 2003

-- Gotta stop talking about praying and how I'm not doing enough of it. It's ridiculous, just do it.
Still, a spiritual life without prayer is like the gospel without Christ. Instead of proving or defending anything, it might be worthwhile to simply bring all the doubtful and anxious questions together with one question: "If prayer, understood as an intimate relationship with God, is indeed the basis of all relationships -- to ourselves as well as others -- how then can we learn to pray and really experience prayer as the axis of our existence?" -- Henri J. Nouwen, "Reaching Out" pg.123

So, the paradox of prayer is that it asks for a serious effort while it can only be received as a gift. We cannot plan, organize, or manipulate God; but without careful discipline, we cannot receive him either. -- Henri J. Nouwen, "Reaching Out" pg. 126

Tuesday, August 05, 2003

-- Learning to love the unlovely and unlovable.

-- Judgment never works ... for we put them on probation, "you are unacceptable the way you are, when you change, then we will talk." Agape love has never had conditional love as a definition. Judgment always guarantees we will ourselves will be judged; it guarantees us to be hyprocrites and keeps us living the past. There are very few things in life which rob us of our joy faster than judging others.

-- In Ephesians 4:30, we find that judgment grieves the heart of the Lord. Romans 14:4-10 epxlains that we criticize the Lord when we judge and that we offend Him.

-- We usually have gone from "godly evaluation" to judgment when our evaluations cease to have mercy or hope. Usually words like "you always" or "you never" are a good sign we've gone from evaluation to judgment. To evaluate without love, to "evaluate" with anger ... we have passed into judgment. Judgment sees flaws as permanent traits, unchangeable. Judgment often is the blaming of others for our own unhappiness. As Christians, no one has the power to keep us unhappy ... none of us are helpless victims, for we all have access to the power of Jesus. Remember: its not circumstances which shape us, but our response to our circumstances which will shape our lives, our happiness.
"I've had a crush on you since the day we met. Couldn't you tell, the way I was ignoring you?"

"There was something compelling about your apathy."


hahaha!

Monday, August 04, 2003

Prompted by:

proverbs 27:17 as iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.
i want to be like that.
-- d. hoffman


I've been meaning to write a huge discourse on this, but it appears that its coming out from the wrong motives ... and consequently I need to keep my mouth shut.


"Who are you to judge someone else's servant? To his own master he stands or falls. And he will stand, for the LORD is able to make him stand...So then, each of us will give account of himself to God. Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in your brother's way."-- Romans 14:4,12-13


Mm ... it is so easy to go from a sharpening spirit to one that criticizes, judges, and "evaluates." A sharpening spirit never presumes to have something to bring to the table, we can never be truly hospitable to others until we cease to condition our relationships with them upon our own terms. In other words, you can't sharpen if you're being anal. You can't sharpen if you're prideful. And you certainly can't sharpen if you're being a presumptuous, pompous bastard.

My pride, my ego ... definitely still too big. Its a good thing that God never hesitates to make sure I feel like poo for lacking compassion, my prideful attitudes, the words that I say, and for messing up. Careful what you ask for when you ask God to purify your motives, to search your heart and reveal the darkness that is inside. Because if you forget to ask God for the grace to accept those things and move towards change .. you're just going to see darkness and be miserable.

How can you sharpen? You gotta be sharp yourself.

----

Shut up and play hard boy, your Pops never raised you up to be a wuss. This is basic training, soldier!

Knowing the Times

After the 9/11 attacks, people poured into churches like never before in our history. Then, several weeks later, fewer people attended church than before the attacks because they did not find the church or its message relevant to the times. However, God and those who are awake and staying close to Him will know the times. Those who are faithful seekers will soon experience a great increase of words of knowledge, words of wisdom, and prophecy to keep us ahead of the times.

In Matthew 16:2-3, the Lord rebuked the people for knowing how to discern the weather, but not knowing the signs of the times. When the Lord used such metaphors it was because there was a relationship. Discerning the signs of the times is actually similar to understanding weather. As a professional pilot I had to learn how to discern the weather because my life depended on it. We are likewise coming to the point when our lives will depend upon our knowing the times.

One thing I learned early in my flying career was that I could not rely on the professional weather forecasters if I was going to be a safe pilot. I was certainly thankful for the professional meteorologists who gave themselves to knowing the present conditions and making forecasts, but I had to know the weather myself and I had to be able to foresee conditions which the professional weather forecasters might not see from their remote offices. This is true for Christians as well. We should be thankful for those who are devoting themselves to knowing the times and we should listen to them. However, this does not negate our personal responsibility to know the times, and to know what the Lord is saying to us personally.

The Penalty for a Wrong Forecast

For a weather forecaster, the penalty for getting a forecast wrong was a bit of humiliation. For the pilots, who understand that the majority of aircraft accidents are weather related, the stakes are much higher. I therefore determined that I was going to know weather better than the professional forecasters. I studied relentlessly, constantly making my own observations, and talking to every experienced pilot or meteorologist that I could. My goal was to never be surprised by the weather conditions which I found en route or at my destination. We need to have this same goal for understanding the times.

After a few years of flying professionally, I was so good at knowing the weather that I was rarely surprised by it on a flight. Now I want to know the signs of the times so well that I am never surprised by what comes. At this time I am still far from this goal, but I am resolved to keep getting better. One of the ways I am pursuing this is by getting closer to those with the same devotion. I know the Lord would not have rebuked us for this if it were not possible to know the signs of the times better than we know the weather.

People still make jokes about the weather forecasters, but the truth is that in the thirty years that I have been involved in aviation, weather forecasters have become amazingly accurate. It used to be rare for them to be accurate, but now it is rare for them to miss. Even so, I am amazed at how many people, especially among the older generation, have a perception that weather forecasters are wrong most of the time. This is definitely no longer the case. I have watched with curiosity as some of these people seized a single missed forecast to re-enforce their opinion, not seeming to regard at all the overwhelming majority of amazingly accurate forecasts.

The same is happening to the church's prophetic ministry. It too is moving from a place of being a laughingstock to becoming increasingly accurate. It will continue to do so until we rarely hear of a miss. Even so, the perception of many, especially among the older generation, will be that it is rarely accurate even when the reverse is true. This can be discouraging, but we must not let it be. We just have to keep getting better at knowing the Lord's voice. We also need to view every mistake as an opportunity to learn, and to humble ourselves knowing that the Lord gives His grace to the humble. We are going to need much more grace for what is to come.

The Great Warning

One of the Lord's primary warnings through His teachings when He walked the earth was about being asleep when we should have been awake. From those who were not ready for the wedding feast to those who did not have oil in their lamps, sleeping when they should have been awake resulted in terrible spiritual tragedies. These were warnings for us. Sleeping when we should have been awake has already been more devastating to the church than possibly all of the sin and other deceptions combined. It will be even more so in the future.

We must wake up and learn to be alert watchmen. We must learn to see, and discern what we see. Ministries over the last decade such as: The Watch of the Lord, started by Mahesh and Bonnie Chavda in Charlotte, The International House of Prayer, started by Mike Bickle in Kansas City, The House of Prayer for All Nations, started by Tom Hess in Jerusalem, and many others are devoted to twenty-four hour prayer and prophetic watching. They have been sent by the Lord to help prepare the church for the times. All of these are helping people learn to be disciplined in their sleep, and to learn to watch even when they are tired.



-- Rick Joyner

Sunday, August 03, 2003

The book parade continues ... gotta re-read Passion & Purity. Plan to hit up Biblical Manhood & Woman per Steve Lee's recommendation ... still going through Henri Nouwen's book. Summer Session 2 begins tomorrow. Not so happy.

Sanny was down! :)

Bogey-boarding for the first time .. amazingly not too sore @ all.

Single-minded, whole-hearted.

Friday, August 01, 2003

New tabs .. check it out
"What is closest to our person is most difficult to express and explain. This is not just true for lovers, artists and tightrope walkers but also for those who pray ... When we do not enter into the inner field of tension where the movement from illusion to prayer takes place, our solitude and our hospitality easily lose their depth. And then, instead of being esssential to our spiritual life, they become pious ornaments of a morally respectable existence." -- Henri J. Nouwen "Reaching Out" pg. 115

"Although we have learned from parents, teachers, friends, and many books, scared as well as profane, that we are worth more than what the world makes us, we keep giving an eternal value to the things we own, the people wek now, the plans we have, and the successes we 'collect.' Indeed, it takes only a small disruption to lay our illusion of immortality bare and to reveal how much we have become victimized by our surrounding world suggesting to us that we are 'in control.' Aren't the many feelings of sadness, heaviness of heart and even dark despair, often intimately connected with the exagerrated seriousness with which we we are exposed and the events we are part of? This lack of distance, which excludes the humor in life, can create a suffocating depression which prevents us from lifting our heads above the horizon of our own limited existence." -- Henri J. Nouwen "Reaching Out" pg. 117