You are getting old!

Well, so am I....

We've been friends for years...twenty nine to be exact. We've followed each other around the world...and have shared some great laughs, a few tears, some delicious meals, and we still are friends.

Even though you now live in Alaska...and I'm still in Chicago....

Happy Birthday, Tim!

Someone sent these to me...

And I think some of them are actually pretty ______....
1. If you're too open-minded, your brains will fall out.

2. Don't worry about what people think; they don't do it very often.

3. It ain't the jeans that make your back end look fat.

4. Artificial intelligence is no match for natural stupidity.

5. My idea of housework is to sweep the room with a glance.

6. Not one shred of evidence supports the notion that life is serious.

7. It is easier to get forgiveness than permission.

8. For every action, there is an equal and opposite government program.

9. If you look like your passport picture, you will probably need the trip.

10.Bills travel through the mail at twice the speed of payment.

11.A conscience is what hurts when all of your other parts feel so good.

12.Eat well, stay fit, die anyway.

13.Men are from earth. Women are from earth. Deal with it.

14.No man has ever been shot for doing the dishes.

15.A balanced diet is a cookie in each hand.

16.Middle age is when broadness of the mind and narrowness of the waist change places.

17.Opportunities always look bigger going than coming.

18.Junk is something you've kept for years and throw away three weeks before you need it.

19.There is always one more imbecile than you counted on.

20.Experience is a wonderful thing. It enables you to recognize a mistake when you make it again.

21.By the time you can make ends meet, they move the ends.

22.Thou shall not weigh more than thy refrigerator.

23.Someone who thinks logically provides a nice contrast to the real world.

This brings tears to my eyes...

This song keeps bringing tears to my eyes....when I think of all the precious people who once filled my life with such grace and love--and now they are rejoicing in that place Whose Builder and Maker is God.

The late Rusty Goodman penned these words more than thirty years ago--not knowing they would be sung at his own funeral some 20 years ago. The title is "Look for Me"...

When you finally make your entrance to that city
Of jasper walls and bright golden avenues
As you behold all its beauty and its splendor
Remember there’s just one request I make of you,
Look for me for I will be there too
I realize when you arrive there will be so much to view
After you’ve been there ten thousand years
A million, maybe two
Look for me, for I will be there too.

As you go down your list of firsts there’s no question
You will want to see your loved ones waiting there for you..
And when you feel you’ve shared your story with the last one
Who wants to hear just how Jesus brought you through,

Look for me for I want to hear it too!
I realize when you arrive there will be so much to view
After you’ve been there ten thousand years
A million, maybe two
Look for me for I will be there too.
And the more I think about it, the more I long to see that beautiful place called Heaven. I have a grandmother already there...and scores of people whom I've loved, and who loved me all of my life. These saints of God have already safely landed on the "other side"--and I'm waiting for "His grace to lead me home."

Look for me, I will be there too!

Now this really does take the cake....

This guy must REALLY be a Chicago Bears fan...

On November 2, Wayne Burdick (not pictured) was aboard a cruise ship in Miami waiting to depart on a Caribbean cruise. While still docked at the port, he set up his laptop and wireless card and accessed his Slingbox device which allowed him to watch a Chicago Bears game via an Internet connection. When the game was over, Burdick closed his computer, embarked on the cruise and returned home to find a bill from AT&T charging him over $27,000 for the three hours of Internet usage.

Apparently, AT&T had charged Brudick the international rate for the access. At two cents per kilobyte, the total charge was $27,788.93 for the time spent watching the game, which breaks down to about $6,500 per Rex Grossman interception.

Burdick pled his case to AT&T, saying he was still at the port and not in roaming territory. After speaking with nearly a half-dozen people at the company, he managed to get the bill down to $6,000, even though he provided documentation that he was still technically in Miami at the time he used his wireless card.

Eventually, the whole matter was settled after Burdick contacted Team Fixer at the Chicago Sun-Times and they contacted the phone company. AT&T acknowledged its mistake, saying that Burdick's device was picking up a signal it shouldn't have been.

At least Burdick's efforts were worth it. The Bears beat the Lions that afternoon, 27-23.
(Thanks to The Gadget Hound via Engadget HD for the tip.)

If I am on a cruise, why on earth would I need my LAPTOP with me? I thought the reason for taking a vacation, and a cruise in particular, was to get away from all of this stuff?

Okay, I'll confess....

I am a Spirit-filled Christ follower. I have loved Jesus Christ ever since I was a small child. I have been filled with the Holy Spirit (the promise of the Father), the Third Person of the Trinity since I was barely ten years old. This is known, in many circles, as "Holy Spirit Baptism." Yes, I spoke in "other tongues"--in a language I had never learned, and had never heard before that time. It was an experience that I will never forget...and it is still as fresh in my mind as it was almost 37 years ago when it first happened to me, on a Saturday evening at the Goosepond Church of God in rural north Alabama.

I believe the Scriptures teach such an experience. I firmly believe the Scriptures teach such an experience--and that it is available for all who desire to be filled with God's Holy Spirit. I believe the "spiritual language" experience is very much a part of being "filled with the Spirit"--but it is not the only experience--gift, sign, phenomena--associated with being filled with the Holy Ghost.

I grew up in the Pentecostal movement (even though I came to saving faith in the Church of Christ), and one of the inalienable doctrines of the movement was/is the belief that "speaking in tongues" is the initial evidence of Spirit Baptism. For me, it was the initial evidence. I was not seeking Spirit baptism (when it happened), but I'm certainly glad that God filled me with His Spirit all those many years ago...and that I've needed filling and refilling, and more refilling ever since then.

In the Book of Acts, we find several instances where people were "filled with the Spirit"--and in most of those instances, the Scriptures tell us those same people began to "speak with other tongues" and magnify the Lord. In one instance (and right now, I cannot remember the exact reference), we are told the believers were "filled with the Spirit"...but no mention of the "evidence"....doesn't mean it didn't happen (or that it did happen), but Dr Luke didn't reference the "speaking in other tongues" for that particular instance.

Here's my take on it (and I know that some of you are just DYING to know where I'm going with this...):

I know and believe and have experienced the "initial evidence" of being filled with the Holy Spirit. It happened to me...I was there...I remember it as though it were yesterday. HOWEVER (and this is the clincher), I believe that many believers are filled with the Spirit, when "speaking in other tongues" may not have been their "initial evidence" or the first experience of "Spirit-fullness."

While I would never make the "exceptions" (in the case of the Scriptures, the "one incident") the "rule" for doctrinal clarity and experience, I am also firmly against "ruling out the exceptions."

Dr Jack W Hayford, former senior pastor of The Church on the Way, and now the President, International Church of the Foursquare Gospel, wrote a powerful, powerful volume about twenty years ago, The Beauty of Spiritual Language. In this volume, Pastor Jack expresses, far more clearly than I ever could, his convictions and experience with the issues of Spirit-baptism and "tongues-speaking." I have recommend (and have given) this volume to many, many believers who have questions about both Spirit Baptism and the "classical" evidences accompanying this most blessed experience.

So yes, there you have it: I speak in tongues. It was very much the "initial evidence" of Holy Spirit Baptism for me...many, many years ago.

Is it the only evidence? That's the real question...

Someone finally got it right...Thank you, President Obama

From his speech last night,

"...there is no program or policy that can substitute for a mother or father who will attend those parent/teacher conferences, or help with homework after dinner, or turn off the TV, put away the video games, and read to their child. I speak to you not just as a President, but as a fther when I say that responsibility for our children's education must begin at home."

This father-of-two has just uttered a mouthful. I am continually in shock by the lack of basic skills that I see from adults who never learned "basic skills."

I work in adult vocational/career education, and sometimes it is downright frightening.

President Obama got it exactly right...and he should be continually and heartily applauded.

My Grandmother used to sing this....


"I hold a clear title to a mansion
That Jesus has gone to prepare..
Fire cannot burn it, thieves cannot touch,
And it never will need a repair.."

I just wonder how many of us are really looking for our Lord to return? In the "everyday-ness" of every day...are we looking, watching, longing, and praying for our Lord Jesus to break through the clouds of glory, and take His children out of this place?

Maybe, I need to do some more "gazing" upward....

Sometimes, life is....

just confusing. I got the strangest "text message" this morning...and it didn't "end" well either...but the Lord knows what the situation is, and I'll leave it to Him.

just disappointing. A good friend of mine has been diagnosed with inoperable cancer of the liver...and he's a precious saint of God. He is always so encouraging, and I thrive on seeing he and his wife in God's house every week. My heart is broken over the suffering of this good man.

just frustrating. I work in Adult Career/Vocational Education. Sometimes, I honestly believe these adults have much shorter and far less comprehensive attention spans do they teenagers they often "spawn." I can explain, and explain, and explain again...but these grown folk seem to only "hear what they want to hear." Even if it's something I never said...or worse yet, never would say.

But life is also....

very exhilirating. I am continually thankful that my health is reasonably good...that I can walk (not as quickly as I once did--much to my chagrin), and enjoy fresh air, the smell of bakeries, and all the "sights" of the Windy City.

very rewarding. When I see the lights go "on" in someone's mind, realizing they can be much better than what they are...and be in a better place than their current location...whether it's here at the office, or in my neighborhood...or even in our local church congregation.

very satisfying. I am so thankful for every good night's sleep I have. My "brother" (even though we aren't blood-related) has had trouble getting a good eight hours of sleep for a long, long time now. He's basically exhausted. He's wondering if there is something physically wrong with him. He needs good rest. I'm thankful for every sound night of sleep that I enjoy.

A wonderful lady sent these to me....

and since I think that she is "grander than grand" I won't give her name here....but I'm groaning over some of these....
Can you cry under water?

How important does a person have to be before they are considered assassinated instead of just murdered?

Why do you have to "put your two cents in"...
but it's only a "penny for your thoughts"?
Where's that extra penny going to?

Once you're in heaven, do you get stuck wearing the clothes you were buried in for eternity?

Why does a round pizza come in a square box ?

What disease did cured ham actually have?

How is it that we put man on the moon before we figured out it would be a good idea to put wheels on luggage?

Why is it that people say they "slept like a baby",
when babies wake up like every two hours?

If a deaf person has to go to court,
is it still called a hearing?

Why are you IN a movie, but you're ON TV?

Why do people pay to go up tall buildings and then put money in binoculars to look at things on the ground?

Why do doctors leave the room while you change?
They're going to see you naked anyway.

Why is "bra" singular and "panties" plural?

Why do toasters always have a setting that burns the toast to a horrible crisp, which no decent human being would eat ?

If Jimmy cracks corn and no one cares, why is there a stupid song about him?

Can a hearse carrying a corpse drive in the carpool lane ?

If the professor on Gilligan's Island can make a radio out of a coconut, why can't he fix a hole in a boat?

Why does Goofy stand erect while Pluto remains on all fours?
They're both dogs!

If Wile E. Coyote had enough money to buy all that ACME crap, why didn't he just buy dinner?

If corn oil is made from corn,
and vegetable oil is made from vegetables,
what is baby oil made from?

If electricity comes from electrons,
does morality come from morons?

Do the Alphabet song and Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star have the same tune?

Why did you just try singing the two songs above?

Did you ever notice that when you blow in a dog's face, he gets mad at you, but when you take him for a car ride, he sticks his head out the window?

Do you ever wonder why you gave me
your e-mail address in the first place?

Why we can't 'relate' anymore...

"Never before in the history of mankind have we human had more ways/means/methods of communicating than we have today. Never before in the history of mankind have we humans been more disconnected, unrelated, and relationally-challenged than we are today."

It sad, but I encounter people who have no idea how to carry on an intelligent, engaging conversation....but they can sure TEXT MESSAGE until the "cows come home." What's up with that?

Some folks would rather "text" and "email" ad nauseaum, instead of having to see someone face to face, and carry on a conversation with them. One of my friends is so addicted to his 'text messaging' abilities, that he has completely forgotten how to 'call someone.'

Needless to say, he and I have a "strained" relationship over the last few years....I want to hear his voice, not just read and respond to his 'text.'

Is our society really coming to this? We have no idea how to communicate anymore....is it really that bad?

I'm needing clear and convincing evidence that it's not as bad as it seems.

Saying Goodbye is HARD...

I just found out that my great friend, Pastor Tim Stearman, has retired from active daily ministry.(Denver First Church of the Nazarene was my "spiritual home" while I was stationed with the United States Air Force, in the Denver area back in 1987. I have cassette tapes and CDs from all of those services for the last twenty years--I really do! This church remains in a very special place in my heart.) He was the Senior Pastor at Denver First Church of the Nazarene. Here's the synopsis from the Rocky Mountain News:
How do you sum it all up? On Sunday, his last day at Denver First Church of the Nazarene, Pastor Tim Stearman summed up 15 years with a riff of memories that began with "laughter in the walls and moments nicked in time . . . eating hot dogs on the lawn . . . indoor fireworks on the Fourth of July . . . "

The crowd, remembering along with him, answered back with a standing ovation or two. Longtime member Janice Smith whispered, "I used to come for the music. But with Pastor Tim, I come for the preaching."

When Stearman arrived at First Church he was in his mid-40s, never owned a house (he and the family always lived in a parsonage). Now, he and his wife, Jane - they met in the high school marching band in Wichita, Kan. - are retiring from daily ministry. The future includes staying in Denver for the short term, travel, substitute preaching and enjoying their daughters' families and three grandkids (another due any day).

As for the ovations, it's not the first time a ruckus has been raised in the auditorium-style sanctuary. Throughout the '90s, the handsome church at 3800 E. Hampden Ave. was a go-to place for citywide concerts and celebrity evenings (singer Glenn Campbell was a favorite guest), thanks to a collaboration with a local radio station. Eventually, the partnership with the station dissolved and the economy - well, we all know. All around, change was in the air.

At the holidays, following a six-week sabbatical, Stearman announced his retirement. It was a big surprise.

"I've done this 38 years and I'm tired," he told me in a phone interview a few weeks ago. He said he had some issues related to his weight (not for nothing, people liken him to a teddy bear) and some anxiety issues he wanted to solve.

"It's stressful being a pastor these days," he said then. "You have people walking into churches with guns, and there's so many more legal ramifications. You can't share things about a member's prayer requests - you could get sued for saying what ails 'em! You're just cautious about everything."

There was the tension of several staff layoffs. Stearman had hoped to persuade the church to buy land for an expansion, but the idea was nixed. He told me, "I don't think I would have stayed anyway, but it was an effort on my part to secure their future." Instead, he came to see that the church "needed a new vision, and I needed a new challenge."

So, on Sunday, he prayed: "Father, all that's past is past. Our future - we don't have a clue about that, but we believe you know, and you're going to walk into that future with us."

A future without Pastor Tim? Wilma Fleshman isn't quite ready: "We'll never have another as good," she sighed.
What a great legacy this fine servant of God has left! I remember his two immediate predecessors at Denver First Church: (General Superintendent) Jim Diehl--who is such a wonderful blessing to me in so many ways; and the late W Donald Wellman--the first Nazarene pastor I ever called "my pastor"--when I was stationed in Denver in the United States Air Force.

Tim Stearman is not only a great preacher, but a prince of a man. I don't know him very intimately, but our relationship has been warm and encouraging over the last sixteen years. When he became the senior pastor at DFC, I wrote him a letter, telling him all that his new "family" had meant to me over the years.

I later heard, from someone in the congregation, that Pastor Stearman had read that letter to the congregation one Sunday evening....I'm flattered, shocked, and humbled.

My great friend Kevin Moses, (who was also my roommate for almost 3 years, and probably my closest friend alive today) was flying through Denver ten years ago (this May) on his way to California with me. (I was going to a wedding, and Kevin was just going to California, since he had never been before). We were on separate flights. He would have a layover in Denver. I called my friend, Pastor Tim, and asked him to give Kevin a tour of Denver First Church.

On the appointed day, Kevin shows up, and Pastor Stearman gave him the royal treatment. I was thrilled beyond thrilled, and my eternal thanks are due to this great shepherd.

So, now Denver First is looking for a new senior pastor....May the Lord bring HIS shepherd to these great saints of God.

Happy Valentine's Day...

From Wikipedia:

Saint Valentine (in Latin, Valentinus) is the name of several martyred saints of ancient Rome. The name "Valentine", derived from valens (worthy), was popular in late antiquity.[2] Of the Saint Valentine whose feast is on February 14, nothing is known except his name and that he was buried at the Via Flaminia north of Rome on February 14. It is even uncertain whether the feast of that day celebrates only one saint or more saints of the same name. For this reason this liturgical commemoration was not kept in the Catholic calendar of saints for universal liturgical veneration as revised in 1969.[3] But "Martyr Valentinus the Presbyter and those with him at Rome" remains in the list of saints proposed for veneration by all Catholics.[4]
In the Eastern Orthodox Church, Saint Valentine the Presbyter, is celebrated on July 6,[5] and Hieromartyr Saint Valentine (Bishop of Interamna, Terni in Italy) is celebrated on July 30.[6]
The name "Valentine" does not occur in the earliest list of Roman martyrs, compiled by the Chronographer of 354. The feast of St. Valentine was first established in 496 by Pope Gelasius I, who included Valentine among those "... whose names are justly reverenced among men, but whose acts are known only to God." As Gelasius implied, nothing was known, even then, about the lives of any of these martyrs. The Saint Valentine that appears in various martyrologies in connection with February 14 is described either as:
A priest in Rome
A bishop of Interamna (modern Terni)
A martyr in the Roman province of Africa.[7]
The first representation of Saint Valentine appeared in the Nuremberg Chronicle, (1493); alongside the woodcut portrait of Valentine the text states that he was a Roman priest martyred during the reign of Claudius II, known as Claudius Gothicus. He was arrested and imprisoned upon being caught marrying Christian couples and otherwise aiding Christians who were at the time being persecuted by Claudius in Rome. Helping Christians at this time was considered a crime. Claudius took a liking to this prisoner -- until Valentinus tried to convert the Emperor -- whereupon this priest was condemned to death. He was beaten with clubs and stoned; when that didn't finish him, he was beheaded outside the Flaminian Gate. Various dates are given for the martyrdom or martyrdoms: 269, 270, or 273.[8]
The official Roman Martyrology for February 14 mentions only one Saint Valentine.
English eighteenth-century antiquarians Alban Butler and Francis Douce, noting the obscurity of Saint Valentine's identity, suggested that Valentine's Day was created as an attempt to supersede the pagan holiday of Lupercalia. This idea has lately been contested by Professor Jack Oruch of the University of Kansas. Many of the current legends that characterise Saint Valentine were invented in the fourteenth century in England, notably by Geoffrey Chaucer and his circle, when the feast day of February 14 first became associated with romantic love.[9]
While a website of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia and other sources give different lists of Saint Valentines, the Catholic Church's official list of recognized saints, the Roman Martyrology lists seven: a martyr (Roman priest or Terni bishop?) buried on the Via Flaminia (February 14); a priest from Viterbo (November 3); a bishop from Raetia who died in about 450 (January 7); a fifth-century priest and hermit (July 4); a Spanish hermit who died in about 715 (October 25); Valentine Berrio Ochoa, martyred in 1861 (November 24); and Valentine Jaunzarás Gómez, martyred in 1936 (September 18).[10]

"No Easy Outs"

For Wall Street or Main Street. That's what President Obama told Terry Moran on 'Nightline' this week.

He's right. The messes that we have created over the last 40+ years must now be cleaned up...or at least we must start the process of "cleaning" them up. That's the current challenge before these United States of America.

It's a paradox really: People have been encouraged/cajoled/bullied/warned to "save"...and now that people are "saving"...the so-called 'economy' of the nation, yea, the world seems to be taking a "tank-dive."

The "investors" on Wall Street have been playing fast and loose with the nation's investors/investments (that would be YOU and ME)...and they gambled...and gambled...and gambled...

and LOST!
All the "stuff" that seems to keep America's "heart" (misplaced though it has been) beating is now nothing more than that: "stuff." The average 'consumer' realizes that he/she/they can live on much less than what Wall Street, Madison Avenue, Michigan Avenue, and the Malls tells we can/should live on. We have discovered that the "latest and greatest" gizmo will not self-destruct in five seconds unless we buy it. Really, it won't. It hasn't. It's still on the shelf of that same store.

The phrase "spending like drunken sailors" has always evoked a laugh, or at least a courtesy chuckle. But the truth is, "those sailors" only have so much to spend, and then they must face the music. What we, here in America, are discovering is that the "hangovers" are hellish!

What lessons are we learning in these "lean" times? Or are we learning? If and when the "economy" starts to recover, will we be up to our same old selfish ways once again?

I wonder.

What really matters?

Regardless of who is in the Oval Office--and how competent he/she may be--there are going to be people in this nation who have nothing better to do than complain.

I'm glad that Barack H Obama is the President of the United States. I'm glad for several reasons:

1) Our nation needed to finally cross the "bridge" of the caucasian male occupying the most important office at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Granted, President Obama is 50% caucasian, and he's not ashamed of that. Nor should he be. He has a great heritage, from Kansas to Kenya...with a little Hawaii and Chicago thrown in for good measure.

2) We need(ed) a fresh voice to represent these United States of America. We need(ed) a family man with small children, who can relate to all the "families" out there with younger children..and what it takes to properly raise those children into productive, contributing adults to their world and society at large. Barack and Michelle Obama are great examples of parents to other parents.

3) We need(ed) someone of "color" to show the Black, Latino, and other "minorities" in the United States that "success" is within reach of everyone--not just the Anglo-Saxon Caucasian male. For too long, the blacks and hispanics have blamed the "caucasians" for their lack of "power" "success" and whatever else they want to blame on the white male. Now that the President of the United States is at least 50% black (and 50% white), the "vocal minorities" have NO excuse and NO REASON to blame everyone else for their "hard places" in life. President Obama has lived through those "hard places." He has succeeded. It IS possible.

4) My generation is finally represented in the White House. The President is only a year older than myself....he knows what the "teenagers in the 70s" went through...He is aware of the turbulent 80s, and how contemporary culture has been largely influenced by the last two decades of greed, graft, and gall. He is no stranger to what has most shaped our country and the world.

5) The "Religious right" which is so often "very wrong" must now lean on the Lord for His power and wisdom in the nation. I believe our President to be a Christian, and a brother in the Lord. He has a different worldview than many in the "conservative evangelical" wing of the Church...but then again, I'm not so sure that Christ is a "conservative evangelical" Himself!

6) What really matters in this nation? I believe that we must return to the place where GREED is no longer good...where "neighbors" are in vogue again, and where God's people are known as the most trustworthy, compassionate, and dependable people in contemporary society.

So what really matters?

Mr President, You did great...

Mr President,
You did a superb job in your very first "prime time" press conference!

You were articulate, passionate, well-prepared, and to-the-point.

You were not an embarrassment to me, nor to any of our fellow countrymen. You addressed the issues that were raised, and you elaborated to the place where anyone (and everyone) could understand your positions on the questions asked.

I deeply appreciate your candor, sir, and your resolve to see these United States find "better days"...

After the last eight years, Mr President, you are a breath of fresh air. You bring a sense of urgency and immediacy to a nation that is still reeling from all the "free fall" of the last twelve months. Thank you for reminding us that the "economic policies" of the last 8 years have brought us to the threshold of the current mess we are having to "smell."

While I didn't vote for you back in November, I am certainly proud to call you "Mr President." You are exactly right about the economy, the inherited deficits, our diplomacy (and sometimes lack thereof), and what it will take to "recover."

Thank you, Mr President.

Thank you.

To the Republicans in Washington and elsewhere...

First, I want to state very candidly and clearly: I am a declared, forever-sworn Independent...

Second, the general election in November 2008 clearly enunciated the nation's choice for "change." The Republicans were voted out of office, and their numbers diminished in both the House of Representatives and the United States Senate. As a matter of fact, the "most liberal member of the Senate" (as he was oft labeled) became the President of the United States: Barack H Obama.

Third, the failed economic policies of the last eight years are exactly that: a failure. The outrageous tax cuts for people not needing them; the wide-open door for "big business" and Wall Street to pretty much do anything they please; and the "trickle-down" economics---all of these have failed the citizenry of these United States. President Obama has vowed to take a different approach.

Finally, the GOP doesn't stand for "God's Own Party." The GOP lost the general election in so many ways, and on so many levels. It's time to "work with the current administration" and help find some solutions to this nation's most immediate woes. The Bush-Cheney Administration left a mess that it will take YEARS to clean up.

Ladies and Gentlemen of the House and the U S Senate, you were elected to do the nation's work, and take care of the national interest. It's time to step up and do it. Follow the President's lead...and if you have better ideas, by all means present them to him. He has invited you to do so.

Take him at his word. Bring your "better ideas" to the Oval Office. You will get an audience, I'm sure.

But it's time to step up, and work.

Like the rest of us.

Be like Jesus...

Many thanks to John Smulo for this:

1. Get baptized by the craziest guy in town.
2. Say and do things that are guaranteed to make religious people want to kill you. Repeat again, and again, and again, and again, and again and don't stop unless forced.
3. Do amazing things for people and ask them to not tell anyone.
4. Hang out with the most despised, marginalized, looked down upon, and shunned people you can find.
5. When possible, forgive and restore people, even if they betrayed you.
6. Live in a way that provokes gossip.
7. Win the most grace competition.
8. Keep the party going.
9. Serve people (note: nose plugs may be required).
10. If you're sad cry.
11. Empower people to do the extraordinary.
12. Act like a rock star in a hotel temple.
13. Radically simplify theology.
14.Break human-made religious laws. Repeat consistently.
15.Prioritize the most important over the important.
16. Let women with questionable backgrounds pay your bills.

If you would like to copy this and put it anywhere feel free.

Some people sound GREAT anywhere...


Some people sound great...even singing in the shower...

Political Hypocrisy: So What else is new?

President Obama has it exactly right: the "Stimulus bill" is meant to spend money....that's the reason it is called a "stimulus"....and the Republican blow-hards (Boehner, McConnell et al) didn't say one blessed word about the "stimulus" while George W Bush and Company were spending the country into oblivion with their tax cuts, rebates, ad nauseaum.

At least, President Obama wants to invest some of this 'stimulus' money into the infrastructures of this country---a far cry from the Bush-Cheney spending habits. Obama wants to see money invested in healthcare, schools, roads, bridges, and public transportation....

I applaud him. Senator McConnell needs to do one of two things:

1) Retire from the Senate, and go back to Kentucky and do nothing on someone else's dime...OR

2) Get with the program of getting some Republican support for the Stimulus Bill and suggest MEANINGFUL, longlasting, effective additions/changes to it.

The days of OBSTRUCTION are over! McConnell and clan squandered their many years as the Majority and the power in the White House.

All the ballyhooing the Senator and his cronies want to do is nothing short of hypocrisy. While McConnell and his wife were in Washington DC basically doing nothing (Former Labor Secretary Chao is his wife), the job situation in this country has deteriorated. Secretary Chao is no longer on the public dole....

Maybe it's time for McConnell to follow his wife's lead...if he can't do his work.

We were warned...yet we did not listen...

The Apostle Paul warned us almost two thousand years ago:

Now godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain[c] we can carry nothing out. And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content.

But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
Greed is not good! It never has been, and it never will be.

Of course, to all the "die-hard capitalists" out there, this isn't necessarily good news. I remember my wonderful friend/mentor Dr Jackie Johns (who often reads and posts here) once saying that "the Lord does hate godless communism. But He also hates godless capitalism...especially when it is "godless."

The Scriptures tells us about the destructive effects of "greed." We have vivid and sobering examples throughout the New Testament (and the Old Testament as well, I might add), and more than a plethora in recent human history.

I applaud President Obama's Executive Order putting a cap on "executive pay" for those institutions who have "begged the taxpayer" for financial bailouts in recent months...and in the future.

But the 'rich' aren't the only ones guilty of "greed." I know plenty of poor folks who are 'greedy" as well....I was raised in such an environment. We never seemed to have enough...and always wanted more..more...more.

Now, I've learned (after all these years) to be thankful for everything I do have...it comes from the hand of God, and to count my blessings. I am far too busy counting what I do have to fret over what I don't have....

And I often look at it this way, what I "don't have" doesn't need dusting!

What someone said about me....

My good friend...make that "GREAT FRIEND" Joe Misek, had this to say about me:
Go check him out.
Disclaimer here: Don't believe EVERYTHING you read....well, um, mmm..um, you can believe MOST of it...

Thanks Joe.

Thank you, Mr President (for your honesty)

It seems that some of the nominees for high-level jobs in Washington DC have had some "issues" with either paying their taxes on time, or paying their taxes at all. This has already derailed at least two potential government servants in the Obama Administration.

In his interview with ABC's Charlie Gibson, President Barack Obama said, "I screwed up." He expressed disappointment with himself, and with his "team."

He admitted that he had made some mistakes in the "vetting" process.

It is so refreshing to hear the President of the United States admit to the nation that he 'screwed up.' That he has feet of clay, and has made some errors.

After eight years of the "Cowboy from Crawford" never admitting any mistakes--and many of them being DEADLY mistakes (i.e. insufficient troop levels in Iraq and Afghanistan)--it refreshes my heart to know that we finally have a President who can say, unequivocally, "I was wrong...it's my fault."

No blame on anyone else. Not blaming the "right wing" whatever, or the "left wing" whatevers either....

Thank you, President Obama. Thank you.

For those who serve this nation...


This video made me cry....it really did....

It says everything that I want to say to those wonderful people who wear the military uniform and serve this nation so bravely and fearlessly.

Christian Nass, Welcome Home!

Just talked with my great friend, First Lieutenant Christian Nass, United States Army--who finished his 15-month tour of duty in northern Iraq. I couldn't keep the tears from rolling down my cheeks. It was so wonderful to hear his voice...to know that he has returned safely to these United States.

Christian and I became close friends while he was still an undergraduate student the Moody Bible Institute here in Chicago. I can honestly say that our relationship has been one of tremendous strength, encouragement, edification, and joy. Christian really does represent his name well: "Christian." He is so much like Christ, and has been the "face of Jesus" in my life more than once.

I wrote one of the letters of recommendation for him, when he decided he wanted to attend Officer's Candidate School several years ago. He is now preparing to enter Denver Seminary, and I also wrote a letter of recommendation for his Admissions process there.

Christian and his wonderful wife, Sarah, will be a blessing and asset to any place they are located.

I'm glad he is home. Those prayers were answered in the affirmative...