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Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Sherlockbot

I think this video is hilarious.


Monday, April 28, 2008

Sunday Morning Impact


Game: Great
Music: Good
Lesson Opener: Good
Small Group: Good

It was an average Sunday for us this week. Our attendance was above average, even though we had several kids who are regularly there who didn't come. Our game was an old one. In fact, I played it when I was in high school. We sent several kids out of the room. We had a table set up, and we put 5 different objects on the table and then covered them with towels. One was a football, a stuffed lemur, some fart putty, etc... The kids came in from another room one at a time and had to run and pull the towel off and call out whatever was under the towel. Then they went to the next one, and so forth until they named all the objects. Who ever did it the fastest was the winner. However, one of the objects was one of our youth workers, Charles. And when the pulled the towel off his head he screamed at them. One kid got scared so bad he fell down. Another girl just screamed and ran in a circle. I don't know, but there's something super funny to me when somebody gets startled and scared like that.

Gideon led worship and did a good job. Our lesson was the final part on heaven. It was about what we are going to do when we get there. I asked that question to my small group. The weirdest answer was that he was going to watch Pancho Villa talk to an alien about how salsa is better than ketchup. Only could a 6th grade boy come up with something like that. Most of them talked about walking on water. The point of the lesson was that we are going to worship when we are there. No matter what we do, it's going to be worshiping God. But, I do enjoy the bizarre things that kids think about.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Wed. Night Impact


A cell phones purpose is to make a way for people to communicate. You must be able to speak and to hear the person that you are communicating with. Sometimes, my faith is like cell-phones that I have had.

I have a toy cell phone for Parker. It looks like a cell phone. It has a ringer. It has an antenna. But it doesn't receive calls. I will never hear somebody talking to me from another land, because the ear piece is a mirror. Sometimes, my relationship with God has been like this phone. I look like a Believer on the outside, but there's no relationship there. I'm not talking to God, and I'm not listening or hearing from God.

I have another cell phone that I broke. But I kept it charged because it had the best cell phone game of all time on it, "Snake." I would keep that cell phone just so I could play the game if I was ever standing in line or having to wait on somebody. Sometimes my relationship with God is like that cell phone. I would go to church, but it was just a game. I was there for the fun and the people. I really wasn't there to hear from God. I wasn't there to communicate with God. I was just there for the games...so to speak.

I have another cell phone that I dropped off the fire escape 4 floors. It didn't look like anything was messed up. However, I found out that people could hear me, but I couldn't hear them. I kept thinking people were pranking me. Then I realized, that my speaker wasn't working. Sometimes my relationship with God has been like this, where I'm talking to him, but I'm not hearing anything back.

My cell phone now is a Treo. It's got all kinds of cool stuff on it. I can get on the Internet. I can get e-mail. I can IM. I can play games. It's got a video camera and a digital camera. I can even see traffic on it. But the ringer is very, very soft. So a lot of times, it's in my pocket and when somebody calls I can't hear it. Sometimes my relationship with God has been like this. I have so much going on in my life, that I can't hear from God. Busyness gets the best of me, and I can't hear from God or do what He wants me to do.


I'm sure most kids can relate to one of these examples. Why does our relationship with God fall into these things so easily? We talked about sin in our lives. We talked about busyness and distraction getting between us and God. Then I talked about Moses. Moses had all sorts of excuses when God came to him at the burning bush and told him to lead the Hebrews out of slavery in Egypt. He didn't think he was good enough. He didn't think he was a good enough speaker and that nobody would listen to him. But God used Moses in spite of himself. God used Moses to do amazing things, not only start a country, but to write 5 books of the OT, bring down the 10 commandments, and to talk with God as if they were face to face.

God showed the Israelites that He wanted a relationship with them. He used Moses to show that God cares individually for the people. And still today, God wants a relationship with us. And like Moses, He has a purpose for us. If we aren't worshiping God, learning about God, communicating with God, then we are like a cell phone that doesn't make calls. It's just a toy or a gadget that doesn't fulfill it's purpose. We must put God as our priority.

So, I'm not going to let my relationship with God be a game anymore. I'm not going to be fake. I'm not going to put God and church as just another thing in my life. I'm going to listen. I'm going to talk to God. I'm going to fulfill the purpose for my life that God has for it. This is what we talked about last night, and the next time you use your cell phone, think about your purpose with God.

This is a funny video about cell phones that I showed last night too.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

13 Reasons I hate Driving in San Antonio


I just got back from lunch, and I had to drive all the way to the East side. I got by some of the worst drivers ever. I read an article a few months ago that said San Antonio had the worst drivers in the city...and I believe it. This is why I decided to do this post...while my road rage is still fresh.



1. The highway system is stupid. A lot of the interstates and major highways don't connect. Instead you have to exit and stay on access roads to get from one highway to the other. Somebody wasn't thinking or they were just too lazy to do anything about it.

2. Access Roads. Anytime you get off a highway there is an access road. They only go one way. So if you're not exactly sure where you are going, you miss what you are looking for. Then you have to drive 2 miles, do a turn-a-round, and come back to do it again. I think oil companies own most of San Antonio, because people are burning thousands of gallons of gas doing turn-a-rounds for missing their exit.

3. People don't use their blinker. I've never experienced anything like it. Nobody in San Antonio ever uses a blinker. I guess they assume people will just make space for them.

4. Drivers don't know how to enter a highway. When you are entering a highway, they give you an entrance ramp to get up to speed. Usually, the highway speed limit is 65 or 70 mph. People go 40 mph on the entrance ramp and then try to jump over onto the highway. This makes me want to shove something into their muffler if you know what I mean (actually, I don't even know what I mean).

5. Drivers who don't know how to exit a highway. The same as above, but opposite. People begin slowing down a half a mile before the exit comes up...with no blinker. Pretty soon the whole lane is doing 50 because some moron isn't sure how to slow down on the exit ramp.

6. People cut other drivers off. I know this happens everywhere, but I've never seen it so bad as in San Antonio. People don't even look, they just come over. If there is half a car length space in another lane, they come over. No blinker, no look, they just steer into your lane like an idiot. Then flip you the finger for being on their bumper. I'll give you a finger...right in your eye socket.

7. Drivers who wait till the last second to jump in front of you at a turn only lane. This happens all the time. There will be a long line of cars waiting to turn right onto another access road. Some moron, usually in a BMW, comes up and jumps right in front of somebody at the last minute. To me this should be punished by death.

8. Drivers who get in the fast lane and drive slower than the other lane. If you're getting passed by the inside lane, then move over. I think you should be going 5 mph over the limit in the fast lane. If you want to go slower, stay on the access road. (My road rage is increasing as I write this blog).

9. Drivers who don't know the difference between a Yield sign and a Merge sign. Because of the one way access roads all over this freakin' city, there are a million yield sign. I think I'm the only person in this city who abides by them. I'll be coming off the highway at 70 mph, and somebody going 32 misses the yield sign and jumps in front of me. I slam on my brakes and they look at me as if I just ate a baby. I want to say, "You're the one who ate the baby, dill weed!"

10. Drivers who see that you are trying to pull out from a parking lot, and then they change lanes into the inside lane right in front of you so you can't pull out. This is infuriating. They see me trying to pull out, and then they change lanes right in front of me, instead of waiting 2 and a half seconds until they have passed me, which would give me ample amounts of time to get out.

11. Trucks. Trucks are the reason that traffic gets backed up. They do all of the bad things that everybody else does, but they do it slowly. They will block up all the lanes and never pass each other. I think it should be illegal to drive a truck on the highway in the city.

12. Every time it rains, it's as if it's the first time anybody has ever seen water come from the sky. "Oh my, water from the sky. What should we do. Let's drive 40 mph under the speed limit. Oh, these things on my windshield are to pull the rain away. I always wondered what that stick was for by my steering wheel." It really doesn't rain here that often, but come on, it's never raining hard, you can still drive normal.

13. Rednecks. Let's just blame rednecks for all the problems of our world...especially driving.

Monday, April 21, 2008

The Scariest Movie I've ever Seen

A few nights ago, Suzy and I put Parker to bed, and then watched the scariest movie that I have ever seen. It didn't have ghosts or monsters or some psychotic killer or anything, yet it was frightening nonetheless. It was called, "Jesus Camp."

I had been wanting to see this for a while actually. It's a documentary about a Christian camp that looked like it was for kids between 8 and 12. If you know me, I love Christian camp. I've been to a ton. I've even preached a few of them. What was so scary about this one was what they were teaching the kids. They were teaching their kids how to be against everything. During the sermon, they were teaching kids how horrible Harry Potter is. During the sermon, one preacher pulled up a bunch of kids and put tape over their mouths that said "Life" for a pro-life message. Do 8 year olds need a message on abortion. Now, these are things that I agree with. I'm pro-life. I can even see where people can Biblically say that Harry Potter is wrong (witchcraft).

The thing I think is wrong is that there are more important matters about the Bible that should be taught. Let's teach them about Jesus. Let's teach them to obey the Bible. Let's teach them godly principles. Instead we're trying to raise a generation that is going to be against anybody who is different than they are. They are taught that the lady who has an abortion is the enemy instead of somebody who is a lady who is incredibly loved by God.

At the end of the movie, a bunch of kids from the camp went to Washington D.C. They stood outside the Capitol Building and had tape over their mouths with the word "LIFE" written over it. One young girl, who must have been 8 or 9, went up to a group of men and asked, "If you died tonight, where do you think that you would go?" They all said, "Heaven." She didn't seem to believe them and when she walked back to her group she said that she figures they're Muslim...maybe because they were African Americans. Interestingly, when a white couple didn't take their tract, the little girl thought they were probably already saved.

The thing that kills me about this is that Christians are already seen as being against everything and anything that is different than they are. I think it is important to make a stand for what you believe, but some things, in my humble opinion, don't need as much energy as people put into them, such as abortion. I don't think anybody has ever changed their minds about abortion after seeing a clever slogan on a sign. I think what changes minds and what changes hearts is showing people how much they are loved, by Believers and definitely by God. I don't really recommend this movie, unless you just want to be embarrassed.

Baptist Children's Home Pictures

Here's some pictures from the Baptist Children's Home. Thanks to Samantha we have these. The battery died on the camera I took, so she was gracious enough to use her own camera to take a few photos. Here they are.





Go here for more info. about the day.

Sunday Morning Impact


This Sunday was definitely an above average Sunday.
Game: Great
Music: Good
Lesson: Awesome

The game we played was "Towel Ball." We tied up some dish towels in knots. Then the kids got into two big circles and started playing dodge ball. They couldn't catch it, and they could get hit from anybody in either circle. Bobby Rivas won for one circle and Dane won in the other.

Nathan led worship. He did a good job. I was busy setting up for our lesson that I didn't get to listen super close. But the kids seemed to be into it. He did a pretty new song and then two old ones, and the kids always love the old ones.

I wanted our lesson this week to be something different than me standing up there talking to the kids. I wanted it to be interactive. I've had this idea in the back of my head for a little bit, and so I decided to go with it. We had a prayer journey. I set up 6 stations around the youth room for the kids to go to. Each station had a different direction for the kids to pray. They could go through it at their own pace, but I wanted them to concentrate and take every station serious.

The first station had a map of the United States. They basically played "Pin-the-tail-on-America" and where ever they stuck their thumb tack, they needed to pray for that area. Pray that people come to know God. Pray for the homeless. Pray for the unemployed. They prayed for several things in each community. We had a pretty good mix of the nation, from Seattle to Florida up to Boston. We even had a couple in Canada and one in Hawaii.

At the second station, they read Genesis 1:31. They had to see that God had made them, and God saw them as good. They are God's masterpiece. They had to draw a picture of themselves (the best they could anyways) as God sees them.

The third station was about an organization that I really like and support that helps girls come out of sexual slavery in Thailand called Servantworks.
The kids had to read the story of the organization and they read a story of one of the girls, Pontip. Then they prayed for the girls who are there and for the people who work there. Then they wrote a note to the people there as encouragement. I'm going to send the notes to them. Some wrote to the workers, and others wrote to Pontip. This one was my favorite.

At the fourth station, they made a collage. They wrote John 3:16 in the middle of a page, and then made a collage of how God shows love to the world around the verse. Some had pictures of people that God loves. Others had pictures of natural beauty that God created.

At the fifth station, they had to pray for somebody they knew that was hurting. People are hurting all around us. When they thought of somebody, they could make them a card, just letting them know that they were being thought about.

The sixth station was more contemplative. I gave them a few scriptures to read, about how deeply God knows them and desires a relationship with them. Then they took a piece of paper and had to journal out a prayer to God about things that they learned from the scriptures and through the process that they had gone through during the morning.

I gave them almost an hour to do it, and they seemed to take it serious and they seemed to have had a good time going through it. I think they learned a lot, and I think ti was good for them to have some activities while they were learning about prayer and seeing how they can spot different needs to pray for. Every station had a sheet of paper that was pretty detailed about what each station meant, and what they were to pray for. I just kinda summed things up here. Overall, I think it was one of the best Sundays we've had in a long time.

Friday, April 18, 2008

1984


"1984" is a book by George Orwell. It was a book that I had been meaning to read for years, but I never had the time. From a post I did last month, I said that I'm going to try to read 56 books this year from several different categories. So, for the classics category, "1984" was one of the books I chose.

Many of you have probably read this book. Maybe it was assigned reading in high school or college. I liked the book a lot. I like what it had to say about how many times we believe things without question because the media or the government say things. Sometimes we feel that people are wanting us conform to a certain mold. This was a good book about trying to find truth and not necessarily believing things because the media or government tell you a certain fact.

Unfortunately, I see this happen a lot of times in Christianity. Sometimes, Christians will bend truth (alright...sometimes they lie) about certain facts to get people to behave in a certain way. When I was a teen-ager, Marilyn Manson was just beginning to get real popular. I remember hearing all of these things about him from my church and my mom (who heard it on Christian radio). Some of them were true. But a lot of them were made up in an attempt to scare people away from listening to him or going to his concerts.

Whether I agree with Marilyn Manson or not, we don't need to lie in order to get people to behave in a way that we think is right. In this book, it shows what attempts people could go to in order to make people conform to their beliefs, or philosophy, or whatever. If you haven't read this book, I would suggest it.

The only thing I didn't like about the book were the characters. There was one main character who's eyes we see the story through. But I didn't feel much for him, or for any of the characters for that matter. There wasn't very much character development (which usually I like in a story). But the story and the meaning the author was trying to get through was good.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Neon Horse-Cuckoo

This is a pretty new band that was suggested to me by Jeff Roussin. Neon Horse is on Tooth and Nail and is one of the coolest bands that I've heard in a while. The video is so weird. I love it. It reminds me of the new wave videos of the 80's.

Billy Goat Prank Calls




Wed. Night Impact


Last night, we had a pretty good Wed. night. We were down in students last night, and I'm not sure why. Many of our regular kids and adults were gone. I spoke during the Jr. high service and Jerry spoke to high school. Jerry also led worship and turned 50 yesterday. He was supposed to do 3 songs, but forgot to do the last song, so I got up pretty early which made me end up finishing 10 minutes early too. Luckily, Jerry had come back up and played a couple of more songs for the kids: "Brother, Friend" and "Jesus is my Rock."

I spoke about cliques. I began by calling up 10 volunteers. I had nine of them get in a circle, and I kept a sixth grader up on the stage with me. I gave him these directions: You will have one minute to get into the middle of their circle. I don't care what you do, but just get in the circle. I could see the kids in the circle making plans of how they were going to keep him out. I said go, and Dane took off to the back. And the kids had locked arms and kept using their hips to block him. Dane tried to force his way in, he tried to squeeze in, he tried to go under legs, and he tried to go over the top. Unfortunately, Dane wasn't able to get in. They all came back and sat down.
Dane said that it was hard and they kept pushing him out. Then I made this comment to the circle. "Did I ever say for you guys to keep him out?" The answer was no. Sometimes, without meaning to, we instinctively form walls to keep people out of groups (cliques).

I said that cliques are natural. We're never going to break them from happening. However, there are good ones and bad ones. The bad ones are ones that discriminate and exclude people. The good ones include others and are welcoming.

I used to scriptures, James 2 and 1 Corinthians 5:15. One says don't show favoritism. The other says that Jesus died for everybody. I told them that we are to look at similarities that we have with people rather than focusing on the differences.

I ended with a few applications. 1. Be purposeful about including others. 2. Be purposeful about initiating the conversation. 3. Be purposeful about joining others. Sometimes you're not going to get people to do what you want to do all the time. You can't say, "Well, I asked them to play dodge ball and guitar hero and they said no. So, that's all I can do." Maybe they like to eat pickles or paint pictures. Whatever! Just join them in some stuff they like. Christians really have no business being exclusive. I hope when people come to our youth ministry they feel included and a part of things (Even though I know that some haven't...but we're working on it).

Yeah!

Although this video is definitely planned, it's still hilarious. Sometimes I get urges to do something like this to a complete stranger. Luckily, I have never acted out on these urges.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

The Rap on Rap


The Parent Television Council put out a study about the content that is coming out on television programs that play rap videos. They looked at it and saw how these programs are showing children huge amounts of adult-themed content.
Unfortunately, it seems that is what is selling in the rap music industry. You have to have the parental advisory to sell well. You have to talk about girls in a degrading way and talk about the drugs you're going to smoke and the people you're going to hurt. The people in this industry are helping to raise a culture of kids who think this is reality. It may be reality to a small percentage of inner-urban communities.
Bill Cosby just put out a hip-hop album as well. It's trying to put something else out there to promote positive things, such as education. I think the leaders of this market need to do something about this, but parents need to be aware of what their kids are listening to and what they are watching. Hip hop is very popular across the board. It doesn't matter if your in rural Nebraska or inner-city Chicago, rap and hip hop are what kids are listening to. This article gives a good look at what kids are looking at.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Diamonds are Forever

Last night, Suzy and I watched "Blood Diamond" with Leo. It was a great movie. It was based on the civil wars in Africa that are funded by the diamond industry. Groups are mining diamonds by using slaves. They are using the profit to buy guns to have wars against their governments. The movie was a story about this and how the UN made a resolution not to purchase any "Conflict Diamonds."

This made me very sad and, although I knew about this stuff and remember seeing it on the news, it never hit me as hard as it did when I saw the movie about how devestating this really is. So, today I've been reading up on some of these things and found a pretty cool site: realdiamondfacts.org.


Here are some facts that they put out about the diamonds in Africa:

Fact 1. In the past 15 years, an estimated 500,000 Angolans, 50,000 people in Sierra Leone,and nearly 4 million people in the DRC have died from civil wars funded through the sale of conflict diamonds.

Fact 2. A recent study found 46% of miners in Angola are under the age of 16, with many of thechildren exploited for little or no pay because of war, poverty, and the absence of education.

Fact 3. 300,000 carats of diamonds annually are currently being mined with slave labor in therebel-held regions in Ivory Coast and sold to fund violent conflicts. These diamonds are being smuggled through neighboring countries to international markets.

Fact 4. Sierra Leone is ranked the world's poorest country by the United Nations HumanDevelopment Index, with poverty in diamond mining areas such as the Kono District particularly striking. The Kono District has produced billions of dollars worth of diamonds.

Fact 5. Although the Democratic Republic of Congo produces more than $2 Billion of diamonds annually, 90% of its population of 60 millino lives in abject poverty. The diamond capital, Mbjui Mayi, has no clean water, poor roads, and minimal electricity.

Fact 6. The vast majority of the 1.4 million artisanal diamond diggers across five African countries live in poverty, making less than one dollar a day.

Fact 7. The use of child labor for cutting and polishing is extremely common in India, where children suffer from dangerous conditions, overcrowding, and malnutrition. In many areas, one out of ten workers polishing a diamond is a child due to minimal government oversight.

Fact 8. FBI reports and a Washington Post Investigation have linked Al Qaeda money-laundering efforts to the rough diamond trade in Sierra Leone.

Fact 9. Ninety years of environmental neglect in Angoloan diamond mining have devestated large tracts of land, poisoned local water, and forced indigenous populations to relocate.

Fact 10. After diamonds were discovered, the San Bushmen were forcibly evicted from their ancestral land in Botswana's Central Kalahari Game Reserve's land they have lived on for thousands of years. The Bushmen have faced torture, severe and routine harassments, and the complete destruction of their water supplies.

This site also talks about what we can do to help, especially since the United States accounts for most of the diamond purchases in the world. I know Suzy is torn in two because she wants diamonds but she doesn't want to support that. I know that it's going to be easier for me to not have to buy diamonds anymore for her (not like I buy her many anyways). "Think of the children in Africa," I'll say.




Sunday Morning Impact


Music: Great
Game: Great
Message: Great
Small Group: Good

I would say this was an above average weekend with a below average attendance. The game we played is one of my favorites. We had 3 volunteers come up, and then they each got to choose a partner. The volunteer had to put a glob of shaving cream all over their face. When I said "Go!" the partner started throwing goldfish crackers at their face. Whoever had the most stuck in the shaving cream at the end of a minute was the winner. Josh won with 34 fish on his face.
Gideon led worship and he always does a great job. We didn't have the front row of seats in because of the game, so a lot of the kids walked up to the front of the stage. I wish that we could do that more often.
Our small group lesson was about heaven, but for my opener I talked about the Baptist Children's Home and everything that we did there on Saturday. I talked to the kids about how even showing some love by doing a little thing like talking to a hurting kid or playing basketball with a hurting kid can do so much. I hope that more will go with us next month when we go back to play soccer with the migrant kids.
My small group went by super fast. I didn't finish because we got to talking about the first few verses for so long. The lesson was about what we are going to look like when we get to heaven. Are we going to have the same bodies. Are we going to be able to pick our bodies. Of course when I asked what they wanted their bodies to be like in heaven, I got the range of answers that could only come from a group of 6th grade boys: green like an alien; big arms, short legs; wings; no feet, just a spiral thing at the bottom where I could float; one arm shorter than the other so I can fake people out with my short arm and then grab them with my long arm. Those are a few of the answers that I can remember. I love hanging out with these kids.

Enrique's Journey


I finished a book the other day called Enrique's Journey. It's about a teen-ager who is from Hondurus who wants to come to the United States to find his mother. When he was 7 years old his mother left for the US to get a job. She would send money and toys, but Enrique wanted his mom. He is almost obsessed with being with her. So, when he is 17, he starts out across Central America and Mexico to get to the US to find his mom.
We go and hang out with some teen-agers who have been caught crossing the border. Many of them are from Hondurus, El Salvador, Columbia, and even Ecuador. One kid had a broken arm. He told me that he fell from the train. I didn't think much of it. After reading this book, I realize how hard it was for these kids. Him falling from the train was a big deal, that meant that he had a very dangerous journey.
Enrique rode on the top of a train. Many migrants have fallen off and had limbs taken off. Some have been killed. Then there are bandits who rob the migrants. Women get abused and men get robbed. Gangs are all over the place and violence is common. Plus, some of the Mexican Police are just as dangerous as the bandits and the gangs. They steal from the migrants and if the migrants don't have any money, then they deport them back to their original country.
This was a great story. The author is a journalist, so the story is told as if it was a newspaper story. It had a lot of facts and stuff, but she just isn't a good storyteller. It did give me a greater understanding for what the migrant kids at the Baptist Children's Home go through when they come to the country.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Baptist Children's Home

Today, we took the kids to the Baptist Children's Home. We didn't plan anything super special. We took a couple of bouncers and a lot of hamburgers and hot dogs, with intentions of hanging out and talking with the kids (they are all teen-agers).

I think everybody had a good time. I met a girl named Della. Her dad had died when she was 10 and her mom lost custody because she was giving the kids pot. Della started smoking pot when she was 11. She's 14 now, and her mom doesn't want anything to do with her. She is leaving the Baptist Children's Home in 9 days and she doesn't know where she is going to go. She's going to a foster home. She doesn't have anybody. No family, nothing. She told me, "I belong to the state, but I'm used to it." It breaks my heart.

Almost all of the kids have similar stories to Della. One kid was a Katrina victim. He was stranded in his home and had to swim out over dead bodies and everything. He lost all of his possessions and his family in that hurricane. I wish I could do more to help these kids.

Suzy and I have thought about fostering kids. I'd love to take so many of these kids in and let them see that they have somebody who does care for them. I don't want them to feel unwanted, but when the people who are supposed to care for them don't, then how are they supposed to feel. We're going to go back more often. It's been a while since we had been there, but I'm so glad that we went back. I know the kids had a great time playing football and basketball with everybody. Lupe is going to have some of the kids come to his Friday Night thing at his house, so that will be awesome. I hope these kids find someone who will treasure them. I hope these kids will see God.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

13 Things I want to do before I die

1. Skydive. I know this will probably be the thing that kills me. Even thinking about it kinda makes me anxious. My luck, the parachute won't open, and I'll be one of those people who bounce twice and live to tell about it...from a wheelchair that I have to move with my mouth

2. Build a tree house. I would have to definitely get some help on this because I'm about as handy as a donkey. But it would be fun to build a super cool tree house, like the one in the movie "Jack" or "The Sandlot."

3. Hunt a Grizzly bear. I'm going to go to Alaska and hunt a Grizzly. I'm not going after deer, ducks or squirrels...I want something that, if I miss, will kill me. If it does attack me, then I'm going to try to stab it in the eye with a stick and kill it with my bare hands (get it...bare hands. Hilarious).

4. Run a marathon. Just kidding. I think I can make it through my life without ever putting myself through that. A marathon seems more like torture than fun to me. Plus, it would take me a week and a half to run 26 miles. I don't think I can get that much time off work.

5. Be on David Letterman. I don't know why he would ask me, but I think it would be fun to be a guest on his show. Maybe if I kill a bear with my bare hands he'll ask me to be on his show.

6. Go into outer space. Maybe in the future, trips to outer space will be a lot cheaper and I could afford to go. "Forget about Italy, I'm going to the moon," I'll say.

7. Write a book. I get ideas, but I never follow-through. I started a book called, "Don't eat the Meatballs." I've been thinking about another book called "Replaceable." I just don't ever finish them, so I don't know how they turn out.

8. Be on the news for witnessing something historical. I don't want to be on the news for doing it, unless it's good (but usually the news can care less about the good stuff and only focus on horrible tragedies). Maybe I'll get to see a lion escape from a zoo and kill some penguins on something. ( I realize that's not historical, so maybe the lion can attack Hilary Clinton...she doesn't have to die or anything, maybe the lion will just lick her and tickle her, and I'll get to laugh because the lion is tickling her so hard...but deep down, I'd be concerned).

9. Go on a safari. I want to see monkeys and hippos in the wild.

10. Go to as many MLB stadiums and watch a game as possible. So far, I've got 3. I think I have 29 to go.

11. Learn to play the guitar well. I know the chords, but getting my fingers to go where I tell them to is another thing altogether. My fingers are all toddlers when it comes to the guitar. They go wherever they want with no rhyme or reason, just like Parker. This morning the kid was trying to climb into the dishwasher. I kept telling him to get out of there. He doesn't listen, just like when I tell my fingers to go somewhere on the guitar.

12. Adopt a kid. I want to adopt a bunch of kids, preferably after they have been potty-trained. I'd like to get a kid from Africa, a girl from Asia (to protect her from what a lot of girls without families have to go through there) and some foster kids from the US who nobody really wants. My heart dies when I think about kids who are unwanted. I wish I could take care of them all.

13. Learn to surf. Of course we'd have to move back to the West Coast near the ocean. It was a lot of fun, and I think if I worked at it, I could do it. Plus it's a workout and a half. I was so tired after it was all over from paddling out and trying to get over the waves. Some people make it look so easy. I make it look as hard as it really is. Also, I make getting in and out of wetsuit look as hard as it really is too. I struggle at it.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Paintball


Last Saturday we took the junior high boys to go play some paintball. We all had a great time. We took 12 students and 4 adults. Personally, I killed more times than I was killed. Does that make sense. I think I killed about 16 or 17, and I only got killed 5 or 6 times. But when I did, they were doozies.
One game, we decided to do kids verse adults. We took one kid, so the ratio was 5 against 11. I decided that we should all stay together and cover each other, since the kids hadn't been advancing. Mostly, they were staying in their base or pretty close to it. So, as soon as the ref said go, we ran down one side of the course. We got to the base, and I could see about 5 or 6 kids in there, so we started shooting at them. Unfortunately, some of the kids went running the other direction and got behind us without us knowing it. They started picking us off from the back. None of us knew that our cover had been killed. I was bent over shooting at the base, and Justin Chavez had got up on us and shot me 4 times in the butt before I could even turn around. I still got the welts and bruises from that one.
Another game, my team had killed everybody on their team except for one. There were 6 of us and one on their team, Chase. I hollered to Chase that he should just give up. He was in a spot that we couldn't get easily. He would sit up and take a few random shots, and I would shoot back at him, but he would jump up and shoot and then go back down so fast that it was hard to get a good shot off on him. One time he sat up and shot off some shots and got super lucky by getting me right between the eyes. Chase would say that was skill, I say luck.
Then Jesse, who was on my team, got shot by one of our own players, so he was out. Then another guy ran out of paint. And then Chase killed off the last 3 and won the game. It was actually pretty amazing...I just wish he had been on my team.
Overall, it was an awesome day. A few welts, but nothing serious. I think this is something that we are going to try to do pretty often

Sunday Morning Impact


Music: Great
Game: Great
Message: Good
Small Group: Good

Nathan led worship again, and he did a great job. Again, we had several jr. highers play in the band. He did one new song and several songs that are well-known by the kids. Our game was "Chubby Bunny." I love that game. Kids have to put a big marshmallow in their mouth and then say "Chubby Bunny." They add marshmallows until they can't say that any longer. Katie Mooney and Jesse Kieslich tied as the winners with 7.
We talked about heaven again in our small groups. We talked about what the Bible says about how to get to heaven. We read what Jesus had to say about it as well as what Paul and John had to say about it in their letters. Basically, believing in Jesus is what the Bible says you have to do to get to heaven. My small group had a pretty good discussion about all of that. Overall I think it was a great week.

Friday, April 4, 2008

A Little Rant

One thing I've noticed lately is that there are a lot of people who are trying to raise money for different organizations. Tonight I was driving home from the grocery store, and a bunch of cheerleaders were standing on the side of a super busy intersection and just going up to cars and asking for money. Basically, they're acting like homeless people, hoping for a handout. What happened to people working towards raising money? What happened to car washes? What happened to selling candy and doing garage sales? All of the sudden people just hold up a sign and expect me to give them money. "We're going to Nationals," they say. I DON'T CARE! Do something about it. Instead of teaching kids to earn money and work hard for something, we are teaching them to feel entitled and how to beg for something that they didn't earn. (Standing on a street corner doesn't count as work). When I lived in San Francisco, I would give to homeless men standing on the street corner because they had a real need. But I am not going to give to a basketball team, a cheerleader group, or even a church group who just stands on a street corner holding a sign, when they are capable of doing some type of service to earn money. I was asked for spare change tonight, and I stood by my principals, I don't care how cute the boy cheerleader who came up to my car was, I didn't give in.

Finding Faith: Searching for What Makes Sense


This was a book that I just finished by Brian McLaren. I've heard a of good stuff about this guy, so I thought I would try one of his books. There were some really good things in this book, and some things I really didn't like at all. A couple of times I though he was borderline blasphemous. But once I got to chapter 3 everything got a lot better.
Basically, he was writing to people who either don't believe or are on the verge of believing in God. He talked about what faith was and what it wasn't. One thing I liked was that he talked about the difference between good faith and bad faith. Bad faith is a faith that causes harm to people, such as the KKK who have faith that God says that white people are the master race, faith that causes people to blow up innocent people, etc...Good faith is faith that is good for everybody, that tries to make the world a better place. He goes a lot deeper into this, so if you're interested check out the book.
He also talks about the differences between atheism, agnosticism, and deism. He tried to answer some really big questions. He also talked about why he believes. He talked a lot about finding God through nature.
This was a pretty good book. It's very deep in parts, and some parts are hard to read. If you are interested in talking to people who have no faith, or have different faith, this could be a good book to read.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

13 Days I Wish I could relive over again

This is going to be a list of days that I wish I could experience one more time. Some of them are going to be because they were so great that I just would love that experience again. Some of them are because there is something that I would like to change about that day.

1. The day we finally beat the Stingers in soccer. The Stingers were my arch enemies when I was a kid playing soccer. I played against them every year from when I was 6 to 12. When I was 11, on Halloween, we finally beat them 2-1. Then I went trick-o-treating with some friends off my team. It was the best day ever (at least to that point).

2-4. The days I graduated. This includes high school, college, and seminary. They were just such fun days. I liked walking across the stage. It was fun to have the cap and gown. It was cool to have a ceremony for all the hard work and studying that I did (even though I didn't do hardly any work or studying in high school).

5. The day I sprained my ankle on the snowmobile accident. I would relive this day to prevent me from flipping the snowmobile. I was showing off to some friends and almost ran into a tree. Instead of letting off the gas, I just jumped off the snowmobile. I'm an idiot. It was fun day with a couple of my best friends, Jay and Jimmy, and then I had to go and hurt myself super bad.

6. Parker's Birthday. It was a fun and exciting day. I mean the delivery was pretty disgusting, and I almost passed out, but after that, getting to hold Parker and seeing him for the first time, was amazing. I can't explain it. I had a lot of friends there too, who just happened to be visiting us. Suzy had a bunch of friends that came out. It was a fun day. Plus I would be able to tell the doctor to do a better job, and hopefully Suzy wouldn't have gotten sick and been in ICU for the next 2 weeks.

7. One day Suzy and I had nothing to do. We were sitting there in her apartment one Saturday, and we couldn't come up with anything that would be fun. So I suggested we drive up to Oregon. So, we borrowed her roommate's convertible, and drove up to Oregon. It took us about 6 hours to get there, then we ate dinner, and drove back. It was fun driving through some of the most beautiful parts of the country, right along the California Coast. Suzy and I had a great time that day.

8. The day I decided to get my hair styled curly. I didn't have much money, so I went to the beauty college. The guy butchered my hair and gave me a Jerri-curl (not sure how to spell it). I told him I didn't want old woman little curls. I want a white boy fro like the guitarist of Incubus. Instead I got old lady curls and it was bleach blond. I just saw a picture of it last week, and there are a lot of times in my life when I thought I looked bad...This one takes the cake, with a brownie on the side. It was awful. Then instead of shaving my head, I kept it until my hair grew out enough for me to cut it and it look somewhat ok.

9. In college I went to see a couple of bands: Chevelle, Fold Zandura, and The Insyderz. Chevelle was great, and this was their 2nd show outside of Michigan. Nobody knew who they were yet. Fold Zandura was awesome, and I met some random girl and danced with her. Then The Insyderz were freakin' amazing, and during my favorite song, "Sacrifice," they pulled me up onto stage to sing with them. It was a good day.

10. The day I drove into San Francisco. It was raining. I saw the ocean. Everything was so cool. My first impression of San Francisco was beauty. I felt at home.

11. My brother's wedding. I married them, but I called his wife the wrong name. I would go back and call her the right name. But in my defense...I had only met her one time, the day before. But I feel real bad about that.

12. The day Ryan and I went surfing in San Diego. We had just flown into town and went and ate at the In & Out. Ryan is so much fun, and we were just joking around and having a good time. I looked ridiculous in the wet suit. It was exhausting, but it was still a super fun day. Then we went and ate at some place right on the ocean.

13. Suzy and my wedding day. I was upset with Suzy for most of the morning, but when I saw her, it all pretty much went away. She was beautiful. All of our friends were there. We ate a lot of Korean BBQ (even though it wasn't the good stuff). It was a fun day.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Anniversary

Today is Suzy and my 3 year anniversary. It's amazing how much has changed in the last three years, which have seemed to fly by. So, today I'm going to do 13 things that have changed since April 2, 2005.

1. We were living in San Francisco, not we live in San Antonio.

2. Parker Silas Campbell

3. I don't have a gall bladder any more

4. My brother has had 2 kids

5. I've changed jobs

6. I bought a new car

7. I've been to Hawaii

8. We live in a house now

9. I dress better

10. My tongue and eyebrows are no longer pierced

11. I've lost a lot of weight

12. We have a pool in our backyard

13. The Juliana Theory, Vendetta Red, Five Iron Frenzy and a million other bands have broken up.

Here are some things that are the same.

1. I drive too fast

2. I listen to punk rock super loud

3. I work with teenagers

4. Suzy's still Korean

5. Suzy still gets upset with me for playing Halo (although now it's Halo 3 instead of Halo 2)

6. I have intentions of exercising that get pushed aside by laziness and television watching or Internet browsing

7. I still dye my hair.

8. I still have a tattoo

9. The Simpson's is my favorite show

10. I would rather watch cartoons than the news

11. I like monkeys

12. I love the ocean (and wish I lived near it again)

13. I still love Suzy more than anything.

OK, so some of them are dumb (well most of them) but it seems like a lot has changed in 3 years, even though the wedding seems like it was just the other day. I remember hanging out with my friends. I remember playing soccer the night before I got married (I scored twice). I remember singing karaoke with the entire wedding party. And now I have so much more responsibility with Parker, Harvest, and the house. I'm not complaining about my life now, I love it (except that I wish it was closer to the ocean and mountains and old friends) but it's just so different and it changed so much in such a short period of time. But I still love Suzy.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Beach Blast Commercial

Here's our new Beach Blast commercial based on the Amp Energy Drink commercial from the Super Bowl.

April Fool's

I think these guys are hilarious.