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Showing posts from 2012

The Perfect Game

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“For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His Name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince Of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his Kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with Judgment and with Justice from henceforth even forever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this” ~ (Isaiah 9:6-7).
Shake Up the [JOY]

As the advent of Yuletide approaches, festive musings step back into the annual spotlight. But instead of capturing the jovial buzzes, the grandeur of seasonal allure and heartfelt episodes of goodwill everywhere, my heart is centered on something more transcending. Not to diminish the splendiferousness of Christmas charisma or the abundance of charitable displays; however, I must confess my pondering this year is centered or whether or not the true meaning of Christmas is being corporat…

The Attitude of Gratitude

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At the advent of November’s fourth Thursday, I’m taken with a nation joined by appreciation that, in spite of selfish bent, has perpetuated a day of thanks in tribute to its God-breathed foundation. As heart-warming sentiments satiate our homeland, respect to freedom and liberty reaches its annual peak; however, even with the uptick in selfless ruminations, Thanksgiving has modified into one of the most ironic holidays in our history, since many employ the celebrative mission without prevailing vision of thankfulness really means. But in placement of concern, I must commit to a higher faith. For such an institution, implemented by God at the beginning of time, has never wavered, sustaining course to liven hope. A basic rewind through history confirms this.


For before the creation of the world, thanksgiving existed as a result of relationship, evident within the Trinity. And through infinite time into post-creation, thanksgiving evolved through Cain & Abel, the Feast of Weeks, Noah’…

The Importance of Being Unsatisfied (Part 2)

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Seven months ago, on the night of July 21, 2008, my hand peregrinated into the world of the abtruse and emerged victorious. For on this night, I explored the options of how sweet life can be understanding the importance of being unsatisfied.

Now since then, I have quailed a bit with the realization my title should have ideally engaged a variant of prefix, with “dis” (implying progression and advancement) being the designator, and an “ex-nay” on “un” (possessing a more past-orientation). But for now I must dwell in the house of mercy conceded to me by the writing gods…
In a few short hours, I, along with a fifteen-member team from Lee University, will be soaring over the mighty Gulf of Mexico on route to San Pedro Sula, Honduras. Our mission, as we have chosen to accept, is to ignite joy and life through several local, church-based communities through devoted service and ministry.
So as the takeoff meter ticks down, I find it especially tasking not to bethink on what has occurred so fa…

Bloom on the Fruit - Thoughts on the Mysteriousness of Women

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Written Fall 2008

As the years on my meter increase, not only do I realize how little I know about life in general, but also how meager my understanding of the opposite sex truly is.
Women are strikingly puzzling creatures - fascinating yet painfully befuddling at times.
But praise God, for I wouldn't have it any other way. Predictability and the overall lack of mysteriousness in women shouldn't be promoted as entirely positive qualities.
For most, sharp, dynamical contracts in behavior is what provides flavor and spark. I concur that the best relationships in the world are constructed on principles associated with expecting the unexpected and striving for a personality that embraces the many curveballs life throws out.
But back to my effeminate convictions...
It has been said that women are like fine china. I prefer the more romantic approach to women being more like the bloom on fruit, inspired by the words of Henry David Thoreau. Delicate handling is a required.
Interesting…

Faith with a Side of Fries

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Life decides to hurl a string of nasty curve balls at the most inopportune moments. Your previously balanced lifestyle now finds itself challenged. And all the while you recognize God is necessary in both involvement and intervention. However, you have three meetings sandwiched between five classes, followed by choir practice, a Greek social event and an internship starting the next day.

You wish you could fix the problem by adding four to five hours to the day. But what is really being overlooked here is that you’ve let your agenda become so saturated with extracurriculars, any time with God is now on-the-go, like a quick pit stop at Sonic during happy hours.

Seriously, who has a free moment to spend an extended quiet time with God these days? Who can offer up sacrifices of prayer, intercession, times in the Word, thanksgiving and service where the time is measured in hours, not minutes? Why are people so content with serving and ‘loving’ a Creator who has ultimately been turned into &…

Life in Death

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From February 26, 2007

http://media.www.usavanguard.com/media/storage/paper973/news/2007/03/05/Opinion/Finding.Meaning.Hope.In.Death-2757829.shtml
I lost a dear friend of mine recently -- twenty-two years suddenly cut short by an ill-fated black ice patch on an Arkansas interstate. When the news first broke, I felt as if I was being sliced open by a Kutko knife. The recovery process in its initial stages was brutal --anything but “smooth sailing”, a journey to which some of you can relate. But as I reflected on her life and the events surrounding her passing, I struck a reservoir of what seemed to be premature contentment. At first I questioned if I was handling the situation properly; however, the more I processed and digested my emotions and thoughts concerning her death, the more I began to tap into a new understanding of what it truly means to live.
Emmy didn’t just believe in God, she lived for Him; her very words and actions echoed a burning passion to follow Christ. I had the op…

The Importance of Being Unsatisfied (Part 1)

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We feel unsatisfied until we know ourselves akin even with that greatness which made the spots on which it rested hallowed; and until, by our own lives, and by converse with the thoughts they have bequeathed us, we feel that union and relationship of the spirit which we seek.” ~ Jones Very

As the summer dusk fades into black of night, so it is I am unsatisfied - so enduringly and unshakably unsatisfied. And even as the sun rises on another day, and the windows of yesterday shatter beneath me – even as glory overwhelms me so purely, so it is I remain unsatisfied.
Listen. Do you hear it? Do you fear it? Do you wish to be near it?
Chances are you don’t and that’s perfectly understandable, comprehensible and everything in between.
Listen. Do you hear it? It’s the sound of people trembling at the sound of its utterance. Unsatisfied. Painful, isn’t it.
And yet, I’ve come to realize just how people relate to this particular world: many live to defy it, many thrive to deny it and several more str…

The Phantom Song Proposal

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Proposal Song - "Dear Love, I'm Finally Home"

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Ok, so it isn't perfect. But she still loved it anyway. :) And at least the lyrics are decent:

Verse 1

When he was a child, he talked like a young man
Blessed with a dream before his life began
He knew

And boy grew in stature, he started to realize
How nothing compared to looking in the eyes
Of one he prayed for
Of one he would adore

Chorus

And when the one is found
The journey starts anew
As worlds collide
Two hearts betide
To pen new love in tome

And as the pages fill
Divine unraveling
Flames love sincere
It's clear, my dear
You are my heart
Dear love, I'm finally home

Verse 2

When she walked into light and (en)raptured attention
Sweetening life into awestruck completion
He knew

And time ticked on by, they would understand glory
Narrating joy in an unfolding story
Of how one came from two
Of how I will love you

Bridge

This I pledge to you
To honor and be true
My deep, I'll always bring
Can this be happening?


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non…

Politicked

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Election Day is here, and if I’m honest with myself and the world, I’m pretty politicked right now. Granted, I’m not the biggest political guru in America. In fact, I consider my bureaucratic reticence equal to a preservation of sanity, not to imply an advocacy of ignorance or indifference, as much as contentment in the limited exposure of diplomatic dealings.

I’m not writing this to preach how conservatism will help this country in select ways. But I will say in recent years, I’ve opposed many executive policies to have come out of the White House, and in response, I’ve had to pace politics as a precaution against discouragement. Granted others have higher tolerance levels, which I sincerely commend, but regardless of political affiliations, the bottom line is: when the spiritual meets the political, faith must always have room to breathe. And if our allegiance is to remain anchored in God before country, we must activate hope through the power of prayer. When we lock into prayer on …

1 Corinthians 13 Revisited

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It’s interesting to note how Paul wastes no time in likening love as the most powerful expression of intentional devotion in verse 1. Often, inspirational homilies begin 1 Corinthians 13 at verse 4, immediately jumping into intimate details, without explaining why framework is equally essential. But Paul contrasts this tendency by shedding light on love’s framework before guiding the reader on a tour into the heart of God’s love, while also enhancing the passage’s structure (i.e. verse 1-3 bookend s verse 4-12 with verse 13).

Perhaps the most important takeaway from this “prelude” is: God’s love is required to be alive. Without love, without the most authentic foundation divinely designed to be at the core of everything, we are walking dead. Before sacrifice and surrender, before any application of God-given gift, there must be a root system connected to a life source, which is none other than God’s perfect love. With framework applied, we can believe in an unfathomable love, far gre…

Grace in Place

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This morning I woke up to my body clock, impeccably timed, having erroneously set my alarm four hours past due. Not intentional, of course, simply a slight slip-up of one mere key stroke. Yet, as the clock revealed 6:03 AM, plenty of time to dress and depart, I couldn't help but smile at refreshing irony, the kind wholesomely reflected by extant ether. With each tick and tock synced to the inaugural rise of October light, the pitter pats of a new month, a new day, warmed me to the contrast of 56 rejuvenating degrees. And as skyline met peripheral on the vocational road, I inhaled the grace that awakened me, breathing new life into understanding, abet not only by punctuality, but by mended perspective.
Pit, pat, pit, pat - the blades faithfully whisk the raindrops, as fervency presents my musings to grace. And as the burn for coffee subsides, the moment encases me, with time whizzing into a furious lapse.
Suddenly out of mind, grappling with grace again
The sweetest symbol in the e…

Flash Weather: Winter Weather 2012-13 Forecast

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Breaking Taboo

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When it comes to favorite pastimes and surefire sources of laughter, I’m reminded of Taboo, the game known for its outrageous cards and legendary buzzer.

Yet, as I pondered the name of the game, upon finding it in my closet, I found myself mentally adrift. In church culture, has the word “taboo” become, well, taboo? And if the answer is “yes”, how do we contend?
Before we pursue answers, we have to realize some key truths about the “church-taboo” dichotomy.
For one thing, the church at large has developed this idea that the unacceptable can’t be corporately discussed - that intolerable is wildfire, only contained if quarantined into smaller fires, extinguished behind the veil of conditioned understanding. However, this type of veil opposes the living, breathing Word of God. Why? Because this version of veil shields believers from deeper dependence on the Holy Spirit. Although secular independence says otherwise, the fact is only God can establish veils and draw the line between accepta…

Make Love to Pressure?

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In 2004, Stephen Jackson, shooting guard for the San Antonio Spurs, cemented his legacy in sports media lore when he boldly declared, “I make love to pressure”, referring to his ability to hit difficult shots in clutch situations. Although Jackson’s flair for the dramatic has often transcended into off-court notoriety, with this statement, he inadvertently released silver-linings of truth that we, believers, can rally around, specifically how we merge a Christ-centered approach into the arena of pressure.

Before I continue, permit me to step back a few decades.

I’ve always loved basketball. In terms of athletic uproar, nothing beats the sound of a swished net in an electrified arena with the game on the line. For years, I have retained an enthusiasm for the game as an avid NBA (National Basketball Association) fan, one that started with John Paxson’s game-winning three-pointer in game 6 of the 1993 NBA Finals and carried on through the championship runs of the Chicago Bulls, Los Angel…

Upgrading the Church (Part 1)

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Originally published 6.29.10...

I’m hearing a stack of smack about the postmodern church needing an upgrade. And with church currently carrying an out-of-tune melody, the declarations hold merit.

How does God view His house these days? And how would He fix the disarray within?

Ask yourself these questions routinely and dare to be unmotivated.

Neil Cole, author ofChurch 3.0: Upgrades for the Future of the Church, voices this well in his recent release, claiming anorganic operating systemis crucial concerning the effectiveness of programs, worship methods, and structural issues. And organic, for those who need clarification, is simply the nutritional value (sustenance) of a church’s spiritual life and efficacy to witness.

**Just a quick side note: If you read about this subject matter often, you may find writers indirectly evaluating the church as the latest Microsoft product or a Triple Play Starter Package. – I’ll do my best to veer from this “norm.”)**

Now, I believe the church doesn’t req…