Tuesday, October 31, 2006


The Wednesday before every Halloween at Otter Creek is Parade of Bible Characters. In this tradition (which has been going on since I was a kid, probably 7 or 8), the children dress up at Bible characters or concepts and give the moderator three clues and the congregation has to guess at who they are. Now of course you get your Esthers and Davids and that kind of thing. Sheryl and I have always taken the tact that we need to recycle whatever costume(s) the the kid(s) have. So a couple of years ago, when Kinsey went as Winnie the Pooh, we gave her a banana and apple in her hand and she was "Bearing Fruit." Last year, she was Snow White so she was washed White as Snow.

This year, we had a Superman costume for Connor and Kinsey's pretty easy to dress in a robe, so they were Mary and Jesus.

Our clues were 1) He was an unexpected arrival; 2) He was sent by his Father to stand for truth, justice and all that stuff; and 3) She was the mother of this "super-man."

Here's the picture of them and me helping Kinsey with Connor. (Boy, if Connor gets my nose...)

Here's Connor all bundled up for the night.

Here's Kinsey and Connor at trunk or treat at Otter Creek on Sunday night. Kinsey is in her real Halloween costume, Princess Ariel at her wedding to Eric. Connor is Superman again, pumped up with some fluff in the arms to give him the right look. It's a lot fun with this right now and Kinsey is really enjoying it too.

Honestly these last five months feel like they've gone so fast and it's really making me stop and try to soak in these moments of their childhood. Barely 10 weeks ago, Kinsey was starting at Kindergarten and barely reading. Now she's reading mainly on her own, sounding words out and growing up so fast. Connor is almost sitting up on his own and eating cereal.

The great philosopher Ferris Bueller really was right. Life moves fast. If you don't stop and take a look around every once in a while, you'll miss it. Posted by Picasa

Monday, October 30, 2006


Why is it that negative political ads really do get more people to vote?

Why does the Republican National Committee think that telling me that Harold Ford Jr took money from porn producers or went to a Playboy party will make me less likely to vote for him?

Why does Harold Ford Jr think that referencing God in most of his commercials will make me more likely to vote for him?

Why in the world does Bob Corker think that showing me Fred Thompson in the Ryman will make me vote for him?

Why do I scoff from Fred tells me that the Republicans will curb government when they've shown no signs of doing that the last 6 years?

Why do I sigh when the Democrats tell me about Bob Corker hiring illegal aliens or being Finance Administrator for the Sundquist administration when neither of those tell the whole story?

Why do I believe that any of the people who are courting my vote will actually do something in the Congress or Senate that would jeopardize them from being re-elected 2 or 6 years from now?

Why do I feel like I'm too young to be this cynical?

Friday, October 27, 2006


When you think about justice, what do you think about? Is it the idea of "bringing someone to justice"? Making someone pay for something they did?

In Scripture, there are 134 references to "justice," but there are also times that I think I fear what true justice means. From my perspective, justice generally means that someone why has wronged me or someone I know has to pay for what they did. If they steal the radio out of my car, I want to hunt them down and make them replace it or pay for a new one. If they hurt me in some way, they should be hurt back. This concept behind this is called "retributive justice." Basically, it's the "eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth." Now, it should be noted at this point that the eye for an eye justice recommended in the Old Testament was actually an improvement on the methods of justice at the time where if you committed a crime against someone, not only you but your entire family would be liable for it.

The point about this kind of justice is that it has absolutely nothing to do with the offender's heart. If someone wrongs me and I hunt them down to make them make restitution, the heart of that person is not changed. In fact, in today's world, this might harden it even further. But what if the concept of justice was not about retribution, but about restoration. Of course, incumbent on this is the idea of a redemptive community to be restored to, but that's another topic for another day. What I have to understand is that the way of life that Jesus prescribes and describes in the Sermon on the Mount is a way of life that is absolutely contrary to how we generally think about things in this life. It's the idea that the justice God pursues is not intended to alienate people or harden their hearts. It's about the reconciliation that Paul talks about in 2 Corinthians 5:11-21.

Retributive Justice is ultimately a selfish and self serving method of doing things; an ideology of Restorative Justice is one that would go a long way toward bringing the radical, world changing teachings of Jesus into a sharp focus for both His followers and those who don't.

So the question naturally is: How does this play out? What would this look like for Jesus' followers to really, truly live out the idea of Restorative Justice?

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Pumpkin Carving and England Friends

I really enjoy Halloween because I get to carve a pumpkin. Here's one I did last night that was a ton of fun. Yes, it was from a pattern.

Also, the England team from last year is back in Loughborough right now and Sheryl, Kinsey, and I really miss being there (Connor was in utero at the time, so I don't think he's missing it). They ask for prayers, of course, and I can't wait to hear their stories when they get back.

In further news, I had a flat tire on the way into work today. However, there was a Tennessee Department of Transportation Roadside Assistance truck behind me who basically pulled over with me.

Literally, he had my van jacked up, the tire off and the spare on within five minutes, and I was off. So Tennessee's tax dollars at work, and well done.

Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Fun with Pictures

Like apparently everyone else in southern Nashville, we went to Gentry's Farm in Franklin. Here are some of our pictures.

Kinsey and Connor

Me and Sheryl and Kinsey and Connor

Gee, Dad, Kinsey, Connor, and Katie the cousin

The family at our first Vanderbilt game together. Of course, Vandy lost.

Me and Connor at the Vandy game, right before Sout Carolina scores again.

Last night was the first night we gave Connor cereal. On one hand, no big deal. On the other, this is the first solid food in his life, so it's a very big deal. From here on out, the poop gets solid(er) and from cereal, he'll go to strained peas to carrots to some foul smelling vienna sausage things that Kinsey loved.

Anyway, here are a couple of picture from this momentous occasion.

He'll get used to it eventually.

It's really not that cold in the house. Kinsey just like to be coordinated.

Posted by Picasa

Monday, October 23, 2006

The Geek Comes Forth...

Battlestar Galactica

Holy cow (or frack, if you prefer). Friday's episode was just incredible and really showed the epic nature of the show. From the Galactica jumping into New Caprica's orbit and then jumping back out in one of the coolest FX shots I've seen to the Pegasus suprisingly/unsuprisingly showing up to save the day and ultimately being destroyed and taking out two basestars with it. Adama (Edward James Olmos) shaves the mustache, (President?) Roslin (Mary McDonnell) is back on Colonial One and things seem to be as they should be, except....

Ellen Tigh died because of her collaboration with the Cylons and her husband Colonel Saul Tigh had to kill her in what maybe is the emotional touchpoint of the entire series and some incredible Emmy worthy acting from Michael Hogan. Kara Thrace (Starbuck), the abused fighter jock, had to give away a piece of her soul to her captor Leoben in order to save her daughter, who it turns out was not actually her daughter. There are collaborators from the Cylon occupation that made it back to the Galactica and they will have to be dealt with in some way...

Galatica is hitting emotional resonances that you just don't expect a TV show to hit and I'm really enjoying the ride so far.

Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip

Look, here's the thing. I expected to have a show to watch on Monday nights, but I really expected it to be Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, which I still watch, and both the acting and the writing are really good, but I don't like it as much as the two previous Sorkin shows (The West Wing and the criminally underwatched SportsNight). Maybe the characters aren't as likeable or interesting. Maybe the stories aren't as good. Maybe I don't care as much about the behind the scenes approach to a late night comedy sketch show as I did about the White House or SportsCenter. Whatever the reason, Studio 60 just isn't working for me.


What is working for me and has become Monday night appointment TV is Heroes. In this show, evolution is happening. People are changing. Ordinary people have powers that are extraordinary.

An oily politician can fly. His brother seems to be able to absorb other powers. A comic book geek from Japan can stop time and teleport himself to the other side of the world. An internet stripper has a strange and violent alternate personality. A high school cheerleader is literally indestructible. A California cop can read minds. There's a heroin addict who can paint the future, but only when he's high. There's some creepy guy in glasses tracking all of these people down... and happens to be the adopted father of Claire, the cheerleader. There's someone else named Sylar who seems to be the Big Bad of the show and also appears to be telekinetic. And the plot is driven by a painting of the addict, showing New York being consumed in a nuclear blast that these heroes must stop.

Seem geeky? Well, it is, but it's also very character driven. It's about all of these ordinary people starting to explore and use these powers and realize that there is a purpose behind them and that there is a greater calling on their lives than the typical mundanity. But they also have to deal with family and the typical mundanities that surround them. It's well made and well acted.

It's also much, much better than Lost, because of the simple fact that it actually answers questions rather than answering in a completely unintelligible way that raises three more that will probably never get answered. Lost is in Season 3 now, but does anyone really have any idea what the heck is happening on that show?

For me the true test of a great show is if I feel the need to search for "spoilers" (plot points that have not yet happened on the show, but have leaked out from the studios) or if I want to see it develop over the course of the episodes. On the last two seasons of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, I read spoilers incessantly. I just wanted to know how it would end. I was invested in the story, but not seeing it play out. For Battlestar Galactica and Heroes, I avoid spoilers like the Plague, not wanting to know ahead of time, but trusting the writers to reveal things as the shows progress. In three seasons of BSG, I haven't been let down yet. Only four episodes into Heroes and things look great so far. I hope they stay that way for both.

btw, there was a Heroes marathon on NBC last night (they didn't have football for some reason), and at the end, they showed a two minute preview of the rest of the season. It's really interesting (and has great music too, if someone knows what it is). Here you go...

For those interested, the song is called "Together,' by Krystal Meyers, off of her "Dying for a Heart" CD. She's apparently a Christian artist as well.

Friday, October 20, 2006


Don't know why, but this song really hit me today.

Hurt - Johnny Cash

The Kingdom of God

It's been a long week here on the blog. It's been fun too and I learned that to get a huge number of hits on a blog, talk about politics and religion, but that's another topic.

I've been thinking a lot about the idea of retributive justice vs. restorative justice and I could post on that, but I don't think I will this week. I'll simply post this and ask a question.

" 'Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from the evil one.
for yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.' "

What does it mean for the God's Kingdom to come on earth as it is in heaven? Spiritual? Physical? Both? Neither?

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

The Use of Evangelicals by the Conservative Movement

I've seen a couple of clips in recent weeks that have made me think about how Evangelicals are and have been used by the Republican Party to keep themselves in power by pandering to specific issues, such as homosexuality.

The following short clip is of Tucker Carlson, Andrew Sullivan, and a woman I don't know talking about this issue with Chris Matthews.

Did you hear the statement Carlson made there: "The Elites of the Republican Party have pure contempt for the evangelicals who put their party in power."

Then on Sunday, 60 Minutes ran a profile on David Kuo who was #2 in the White House's Faith Based Initiative Office, who has a new book out called Tempting Faith, so of course he's making the publicity rounds. And Keith Olbermann has been talking about this issue too.

Here is Part Two of a story Olbermann has been doing. It's 6 minutes long, but very interesting.

Here's a link to the actual video on YouTube and it has Part One of the story and the 60 Minutes videos are here.

So, is this surprising? Disappointing? Is it merely election year attacks by liberals desperate to get themselves into power? Signs of a power-hungry administration wanting to stay in power no matter the cost or who they have to use?

Now of course, it is possible to write Kuo off as a sour grapes guy. Someone who didn't get what he wanted and is now selling out his former bosses. Or someone naive about how politics are supposed to work. Or he's someone naive about how politics really work and expected more from the Bush Administration.

And does it matter if evangelicals are being used? If it keeps gay marriage from being legal or limits abortion, does it matter if people in power use religion/evangelicals to stay in power? If traditional family values are preserved, is there a cost too high?

I think politics is about power. Now the idea behind that power might be for good or ill, but politics is about power and influence and I think there are people in power or wanting to be in power that will use any means necessary, and I also think this falls on both sides of the aisle, Republican and Democrat, conservative and liberal. I think Democrats are seeing the importance of the Evangelical vote and are trying to appeal to the social conscience of those voters, which could turn every bit as contemptable to them as it seems "the Elites of the Republican Party" have.

What I do think this shows is some of the danger of attaching to one party and allowing Evangelicals to be used for that party, as it seems that Evangelicals have.

So, as always, I welcome comments from all sides. Agree, disagree, or neither.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Whew... Here have some cookies

Thanks for all of the great conversation and I hope it continues for a while. Like Snapshot said, all you lurkers join in it. More voices is better, not worse.

For a lighter change of pace, here is a 5 minute video of Kinsey and Sheryl making cookies last night.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Is Zoe Going Liberal?

From the conversation in the comments on Friday's post, it's seems that at least one person feels that the Zoe Conference is starting to lean leftward. Only by making assumptions (and "Snapshot," please correct me if I'm wrong), it would seem that a track on dealing with same-sex attractions and having Lauren Winner (a woman, an Episcopalian, and a liberal) would lend toward this thinking.

So for those of you with an opinion: Is Zoe becoming more liberal? Is it just parroting the direction of Christian culture and Emerging theology and the pitfalls that accompany that? Are those concerns overblown? Is it simply that this wing of Churches of Christ are becoming more concerned with issues of social justice, ideas that have historically been more associated with liberals? Or, as with many things, is it some middle ground between the two?

What are your thoughts?

As an aside to people who have no clue what the Zoe Group is about. It is a worship renewal group that started within Churches of Christ about 10 or 11 years ago. Every year they release a CD of music that is distributed throughout many Churches of Christ with music that is used in many worship settings. They also hold conferences with the largest in Nashville in October that focus on worship, leadership, and discipleship. The speakers for the last three years have been Brian McLaren, Leonard Sweet, and this year, Lauren Winner. It is probably the largest gathering of progressive Churches of Christ in the country, at least in the Southeast.

Posted Tuesday, October 17 9:37AM CDT.

I posted these thoughts in the comments, but I thought I'd bring them out here as well.

Do I think Zoe is going liberal? Obviously there's a problem with terminology. "Liberal" has one context in politics and one in religion.

I do not think Zoe is going religiously liberal. I see no indication that the Zoe Conference is getting to a point of denying Christ's divinity or existence, or the authority of Scripture. Now again, liberal for someone else (Mr. Piney for instance) is old hat for me, so there's always that.

Is Zoe going politically liberal? I don't think intentionally. Now, both McLaren and Winner would undoubtably fall into a more politically liberal category. I don't think that represents a desire on Zoe's part to be politically liberal; it strikes me as a desire to have popular writers and speakers from the wider Christian world, who right now are more politically liberal.

I do think something that's happening in Churches of Christ is an interest in subjects like social justice, care for the poor, engagement of homosexuality, etc, that have traditionally or at least recently been more the area of influence of political liberals. And so it could be that which is giving some people pause. I hope what happens is that those issues being less political issues and more issues of faith, where the people can agree on the mission that needs to be done. I think we can, and I'm hopeful that we will.

Thanks again for all the conversation and I hope it continues.

Friday, October 13, 2006

The Nancy Conversation

The most interesting part about last weekend at Zoe was a conversation I had with recently published author Nancy French. I had run across her name because she is the sister of Zoe-er Amy Westerman. Amy had linked to Nancy's blog when she announced that Nancy's book was being published.

I had done a blogsearch for Zoe on Friday night and hit Nancy's blog which happened to be about Zoe and the Season 3 premiere of Battlestar Galactica. I commented and then mentioned to Amy that I'd really like to meet her sister, since I talk with very few people in real life about the masterpiece that is Battlestar Galatica.

Saturday, while eating lunch with TCS and his wife, Amy introduced us and we had some good talk about BSG. Knowing how conservative she is, I asked her what she thought about BSG is presenting an insurgency with suicide bombers, similar to what's going on in Iraq. From there the conversation veered sharply into politics. Nancy gave me her Evangelicals for Mitt card, and I mentioned my dissatisfaction with the term "Evangelical" and gave the Dallas Willard definition of post-evangelical, i.e. "post-evangelicalism is by no means ex-evangelicalism... post-evangelicals are evangelicals, perhaps tenaciously so. However, post-evangelicals have also been driven to the margins by some aspects of evangelical church culture with which they cannot honestly identify." Nancy mentioned something about how emerging people were soft.

Now I might have pushed her buttons a little bit by jokingly accusing Dick Cheney and Karl Rove of being evil and asking if she got talking points from them. What became interesting about the conversation was that it really showed me how I can honestly see both sides of the political argument. One of Nancy's big causes is the right of Christians to speak freely on college campuses. There's a big thing going on with colleges kicking off evangelical groups like Intervarsity off. In fact, here's a story about the University of Wisconsin that Nancy's husband is suing. I understand a desire for Christians to be able to speak freely, and I also think that that right should be preserved for Christians, Jews, Muslims, etc. And I think that a private institution (like Georgetown University) has the right to determine what kind of speech is allowed and people have the right to protest that and petition for change.

Nancy and I also went through non-violence, the radical love of Jesus as our example, what politics is about. It was a conversation that made me realize that I'm not as conservative as I used to be. We got pretty strong with each other at times, and we were joined by several people. One woman who I think was named Angie, but I can't swear to that. Justin joined at my invitation and jettybetty sat down and offered her insights. It was frustrating at times, enlightening and entertaining at others, and overall a good dialogue.

btw, I would be very interested in input from the others of you that were a part of that conversation. What did you hear? What did you think? I know I glossed over a lot of the conversation, so I'd love for you to fill in some blanks.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

A Piece of My History

When I was six years old, there was a little show on Nashville Public Television WDCN - Channel 8 called A Wider World. I talked about it a bit a couple of weeks ago. Well, I dug up a videotape I had of it and uploaded it to YouTube.

So here I am age 6. I know this because I'm wearing a Star Wars shirt and Star Wars was released on May 25, 1977. Plus it's cold outside so it's probably in winter. Btw, the baby in this thing is not my brother. He wanted much more than the typical pay at that point, so they brought in a body double.

At any rate, here you go:

Tuesday, October 10, 2006


Thanks for the comments on the background. It took a few iterations to get it to do what I really wanted to do. One of the things I really strove for in doing it is not only showing the problems in the world (and they are numerous) but to also show people working to make a difference. It's very easy to focus on the problems in the world and not on the solution of love that Jesus provides. At any rate, I'm glad people enjoyed it and it's actually something I might try my hand at a bit more. I love doing that kind of thing, even more than sound. It really feeds my creative side.

Oh, and if you're interested in what people are writing about the Zoe Conference this year, there's a thread at WorshipForum.com. Also you can do a Google BlogSearch for it or search Technorati.

Thursday night at the Zoe Conference, the student group Sanctuary led the worship. I was really looking forward to it, because of how much I enjoyed them at Otter Creek's Celebration service last month. However, as I stood there and tried to concentrate on worship, something felt off, and I couldn't really explain it. I was enjoying the music, but... I just couldn't put my finger on it.

And then, I realized it. Sheryl wasn't with me. You see, even when I can't sit with Sheryl (which is most of the time at church, unfortunately), I know where she is. I can generally look out the booth and see her. Sometimes we'll share an unspoken joke with each other. But she's there. Thursday night, I hadn't seen her all day and I realized that I was missing her. I really wanted to stay for Sanctuary, but I wanted to see her more. So I left.

One of the things I hope for Kinsey and Connor is that when/if they find their mates, it's not someone they can't live without. I want them to be complete people in God/Christ/the Spirit without feeling like they HAVE to have someone else to be a complete person. I want them to feel that the other person enhances them. I feel like Sheryl enhances me, calms me down, chills me out. We are together. We are Phil and Sheryl. I love being this way and I love how we fulfill each other.

Monday, October 09, 2006

An Interesting, Interesting Weekend

Well, the Zoe Conference was great. I got to see quite a few friends from days gone past, both at Otter Creek and from college at Lipscomb. I got to hear Lauren Winner twice, who was very good and gave some great things to think about.

The discerning communities in the Leadership Conference were also interesting, even though I don't feel like they really did as much community building as they could have.

I also got to meet many, many bloggers and people from WorshipForum.com

I spent much of the Leadership Conference working on the MediaShout presentations for the Friday night session, the late night Friday session (a Vespers type service), the Saturday morning session, and the Saturday night session.

I always get nervous in doing those, because the praise team really relies on the words on the screen to keep them flowing properly with the song, so I'm just praying the words are right and I'm getting them up there fast enough for them. Also, for the Saturday night session, I created my first background. I've always loved the Clarissa Cox/Michael Lusk song, "Let Us Be You." It really captures much of the missional thinking that's going around churches and church thought and is a really strong calling for us to "use our blessings to bring justice." I wanted a background that was resonant with the song and with the work that is going on around the world. I couldn't find anything that I really liked on the web or in our MediaShout library, so I decided to create it myself.

Using WindowsMovieMaker and pictures from the Web, I put them together and they rotate on 15 second intervals. I don't have the music with it, but if you know the song or have it on CD somewhere, you can listen as you watch it (imagining the words over the song). So, I offer it for those who weren't there.

The other incredibly interesting part of the weekend was a conversation that I had with Nancy French. I'll talk about this later, but Nancy French is a conservative... activist and author, I guess is the best way to describe her. It started out as a conversation about Battlestar Galactica and migrated to a deep discussion and sometimes disagreement about politics. I'll post more about this later this week, but it was really a very fascinating experience.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Here I Am to Worship

I'm here at the Zoe Conference this weekend, here yesterday through tomorrow.

It's been good so far. Lauren Winner has been very interesting. It was especially interesting to hear her yesterday in her first session, as a woman speaking to a Church of Christ assemblage, declare herself and Episcopalian, state hardcore opposition to President Bush and the war, and describe how she went as Hilary Clinton one Halloween when she was a kid. I was gratified that she didn't get booed down at all and that people in general are getting a lot out of what she has to say (which is, in fact, very intersting).

The discerning communities are also interesting. Discerning communities are smaller groups of people where speakers rotate between the four communities. We got Wade Hodges talking about the head's involvement in faith and the over-intellectualizing of it. We also had Josh Graves talking about Hands and the acts of service Christians are called to do.

It's been good so far, and it's been especially good to see so many people that we see each year here.

The MediaShout is coming along well for tonight and tomorrow. Still some tweaks here and there. I hope everyone had a great weekend.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Caption This Picture!

In honor of the Zoe Conference starting today, I offer this picture.

Be funny!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Three School Shootings and School Prayer

Five (so far) dead in a shooting in Amish country where the man apparently planned on sexually molesting the girls he had taken hostage.

Principal killed by a student in Wisconsin when the principal had suspended the student for tobacco.

One hostage and the shooter dead in Colorado, where the assailant actually did sexually molest the girls he kept hostage.

And now, there's a plan in Wilson County to add a Bible class where it's not taught as Scripture but as curriculum.

Here's where it gets interesting. In the comments of the Tennessean article, there are people who are saying, "Well of course there are shootings now. We took God out of the schools and so naturally there's more violence. We need to reinstate God and all the problems will be solved." Or to qoute directly... "I want to thank people like the young lady who has come forward to have a bible class. That is the problem today more christians will not stand up for what is right. Until a few years ago we had prayer in our schools and could speak more freely about things, and you didnt see any school shootings then. I know times has changed but God is the same God and He NEVER changes. I agree that all things start at home but you should also be allowed to let children speak freely at schools."

Here's the thing. Society has changed GREATLY in the past 50 years. Violence has become institutionalized and celebrated, even though we act shocked when violence occurs outside of whistles (see, Haynesworth, Albert). We have over sexualized our children and made pornography so available that during the last 5 minutes of the Colbert Report, there's a long commercial for Girls Gone Wild. We've made sexualization such a part of life that some people consider oral sex no more than what a kiss was to me back in high school.

"Reinstating God" back into the mix isn't going to fix this like switching off a light switch. It's going to take a societal shift. It's going to take the business of selling violence and sex not selling any more. It's going to take parents putting forth healthy sexuality to their children and demystifying it. Making kids pray in schools isn't going to solve this. Making people read the Bible isn't going to work, just as making people go to church hasn't solved this. The infamous BTK killer in Kansas was the president of his church, for Pete's sake.

Honestly while these shootings dismay me, I'm not suprised by them. I'm surprised that in our world where we glorify sex and violence that it doesn't happen more (and I'm not talking about homicides and sexual victimization in general; I know those happen daily; I'm talking about them in our schools). To be an agent of reconciliation calls us to a greater calling than to surrender to the world and its definitions. Followers of Christ are called to this. And even that's not a cure-all. It's hard work.

The world is broken, but we have to trust that God is going to fix it and be willing to partner with Him to do that. We have to do it in our relationships with our families, with our neighbors, with our co-workers, with the strangers who we are in contact with daily. Anything less and we're not followers of Christ. It's as simple as that.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Kinsey and Connor

My favorite thing about Connor right now? The way he grabs his feet and holds on, just rocking around on his back, smiling the whole time.

My favorite thing about Kinsey right now? She's just about reading on her own. She's still guessing at what a word is here and there in the context of a sentence, but last night she sounded out "C-A-R" on her own. Six weeks ago, before Kindergarten, she wasn't really doing much, but last night, she did so well.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Just Another Normal Monday

Not much blog worthy today. It was a nice, normal weekend, except for running into Adam, Dana, and Emma Ellis in the Cool Springs Mall on Saturday. Weirdest thing that's happened to us in a while, considering the Ellis' live in West Virginia and just happened to be passing through. Sheryl and I got a date night on Saturday night and I took the kids out shopping yesterday while Sheryl got her prerequisite Sunday nap. Even though Saturday is the "official" day of rest, we fudge a bit for a hard working mommy like Sheryl.

This is a short work week for me with the Zoe Conference coming up Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. I'll be helping with the MediaShout presentations (something I enjoy doing more than sound). This'll be my third year at the conference and I'm looking forward to hearing the keynote speaker, Lauren Winner. The attendance numbers seem down this year to me... Registration Update - September 21, 2006: Leadership Conference 310 of 700 Registered Worship Conference 786 of 1200 Registered, but maybe that's just a cyclical thing going on.

Definitely though be praying for Brandon and Sheryl Thomas. Sheryl's brother died of cancer last week, so along with the Zoe stuff, there's also the loss of a family member to deal with, so definitely keep them in your prayers this week.

Hopefully, I'll get to meet some of you at the Zoe Conference, and if you come to Otter Creek on Sunday morning, come and look me up in the tech booth.
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