Archive for November, 2006

This is Tim Keller, pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in NYC. I don’t know a great deal about Keller, but he seems to be a thoughtful voice concerning church-planting, emerging churches, and missionality.

Redeemer Church is doing some wonderful things reaching out to post-moderns and the unchurched in NYC.

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Posted: November 28, 2006 in Everything

You knew it was coming. See more of my favorite commercials.

Road Trip #4: Back Home

Posted: November 27, 2006 in home, road trip

Wow! There’s nothing like coming home: your own bathroom, bed, and easy chair just can’t be beat. Unfortunately, when you leave town for a week, all your work is still waiting for you when you get back. That’s ok though, there are a lot of good things happening in my life and the Kingdom of God, so doing my little part is exciting.

I hope your holiday was refreshing, too.

Road Trip #3: Similarity

Posted: November 22, 2006 in family, road trip, similarities

It’s easy for me to think that over time I become less and less like my family of origin. I suppose that comes from growing up and moving far away from home and not being able to get back very often. Over time, home seems less like the place that birthed you and more like a place that only seems familiar in the sense of a dream or past life.

Returning home, however, quickly changes that sense of difference. If it’s not your grandmother reminding you how much you look like your great-grandmother or the odd fact that you and that same grandmother order the same sandwich and chips at Subway, then it’s the fact that your brother and you somehow have exactly the same computer bag and sit down behind said computers whenever their is a minute to spare to get some work done.

My family doesn’t usually get together for large gatherings, so this weekend is quite unusual. Tomorrow we will celebrate Thanksgiving and, more importantly, football. Friday my brother and I will hit the sale at the local Apple store, and then my entire family will sit in club levels seats at the Atlanta Hawks vs. Toronto Raptors basketball game.

There’s not telling what the week will bring. I’ll keep you posted.

To be continued…

We made it to the Atlanta. I spent the entire day wife my wife, daughter and grandmother adding my mom to the mix after we arrived tonight. The entire day I reminded myself, “Enjoy the view.”

Hey, it isn’t everybody that gets God commenting on his blog.

Anyway, I just finished watching one of my favorite TV Shows, “Scrubs.” It was the one when all the doctors parents come to visit and they have to deal with being adults and being good children all at the same time. I bet a lot of people are feeling that tension this time of year.

The show ended with Cheap Trick’s classic song, “Surrender”.

Here’s the chorus:

“Mommy’s alright, daddy’s alright
They just seem a little weird
Surrender, surrender
But don’t give yourself away
Hey, hey!”

Good Advice, I think.

Road Trip

Posted: November 21, 2006 in family, road trip

I’m not a fan of road trips.

Never have been.

The idea of sitting in a car going across the country is almost death to me. My brother, Richard, is the complete opposite. He loves being in the car and driving. A guy who cannot normally sit down for five minutes can drive for hours on end. I don’t get that! He once thought about being a cross-country truck driver. That’s how much he loves it. I can’t think of anything I would dread more.

Anyway, tonight I find myself in the middle of a road trip. My family is off to see more family for Thanksgiving. In all honesty, I’ve been married to my wife for almost nine years, and today was the longest time we’ve ever spent in a car together (10 hours).

I hate road trips and I avoid them at nearly all cost.

But, alas, I broke down and now we’re spending the night in a Marriott in Jackson, MS, the city in which I was born. And tomorrow promises only more driving.

They say that you can learn a lot about a person on a road trip. I think my wife and daughter have learned something about me: I hate road trips. But then again, I could have told them that beforehand.

I wish there was something profound or inspiring to say about this experience so far, but there isn’t. I look forward to picking up my grandmother tomorrow. I look forward to seeing my mother, my brother, my best friend from high school who’s wife just gave birth to their first child, and I look forward to eating my mother’s cooking. I just don’t look forward to the seven more hours of driving ahead of me tomorrow.

Pray for me, y’all!

Pain and Praise

Posted: November 16, 2006 in problem of pain, speaking, yancey

I’m headed out this weekend to speak at a retreat for a church where a good friend of mine works as youth minister. I’m so grateful that the Lord continues to use me and the gifts he’s given me to further His Kingdom and bless those who are trying to walk with Him.

The theme of this retreat is “Praise You In This Storm.” This youth group lost a young woman to murder this past summer. The crime was heinous, brutal and–like all murders–completely unnecessary. Though the retreat was not envisioned with this event in view, the weekend will focus on how to love and worship God in a world that is so enormously fallen.

In preparation for the weekend, I’ve revisited some of the more painful events from my life and how I saw God and discovered Him anew in the midst of them. One of the best resources for me has been the pen of Philip Yancey. Yancey’s work is among the very best of popular Christian literature. I love these words from his book, Disappointment with God:

“Some Christians long for a world well-stocked with miracles and spectacular signs of God’s presence. I hear wistful sermons on the parting if the Red Sea and the ten plagues and the daily manna in the wilderness, as if the speakers yearn for God to unleash his power like that today. But the follow-the-dots journey of the Israelites should give us pause. Would a burst of miracles nourish faith? Not the kind of faith God seems interested in, evidently. The Israelites give ample proof that signs may only addict us to signs, not to God.”

Good words, I think, for people like me who often want the benefits of God more than they actually want God.