Archive for September, 2007

I ask for the nations

September 27, 2007

Let me tell you a secret passion of mine. No, let me first tell you why I think this is my passion:

  1. I dream big, and I love big dreams
  2. I think I am a good teacher
  3. I love logic and numbers and managing the two
  4. I hate seeing people suffer

So what the heck is this passion? I would love to change a town. Perhaps this is too small. I would love to change a county or even a small country. Yes, I would love to take a small country and completely transform it, take it from impoverished and Lost to self-sustaining and Saved. I would love to teach people to manage money, to be generous to others, and help them to know Christ.

Wouldn’t that be incredible? This post by Perry challenged me: what if we could not fail?

So, I’m not sure what exactly my calling is. I’ve often thought about the transformation of Williamsport actually, and it seems that others are on board too.

What would you do (not attempt) for God if you knew you couldn’t fail? (Go ahead, answer in the comments :-))

What do you think it would take to transform Williamsport? (Be real for a second – what would YOUR first step be?)

Why can’t I sacrifice

September 20, 2007

If you check Perry Noble’s message “Going for it” (here), you’ll hear him say that today’s breed of Christian wants to advance the Gospel but does want to sacrifice anything to do it. This hit home with me.

I was reminded of the other night at poker. Because the same thirty to forty people come multiple days a week, you get to know names and faces; you get to start building relationships with your new poker buddies. Well, I started talking to two people on the end of my table, and we were having a really good time. Finally, the girl opened up her purse and said, “Do you want to see my card protector?” She pulled out a pin-button that had some remark about how women were better than men or something which was fairly humorous.

Then she pulled out a second pin-button that said something mocking the idea of organized religion. Now, if you’re from a Churched background, you might say, “right on”, and think that she was rebelling against the letter of the law, hypocritical, condescending Church mentality that you see in some churches today. No, she was against all religion.

The guy next to her quickly agreed; I didn’t say a word.

I missed a great opportunity. Why couldn’t I speak? Yeah, I had just met them, and I didn’t want to put strain on the new relationship. Yeah, I didn’t want to get into a heated debate over the validity of Jesus Christ, especially when that debate could lead to ill feelings left over for the rest of the sitting experience.

Or, maybe I was just scared.

While it was a combination of both, Perry’s message really spoke to me. He said that we’re scared to sacrifice, when Jesus Christ sacrificed it all.

What are you not willing to sacrifice? Is it worth it?

Welcome to Montoursville

September 16, 2007

One night’s sleep and two car-loads of stuff later, Montoursville starts to feel like home.

I drove around a bit and found a beer distributer, some sub shops, and a Wal-mart, each within a few blocks of our apartment. What more could you ask for? Mini-golf? Go-carts? A pool hall? Granted! Spence just told me that there’s plenty more in Montoursville just waiting to be discovered.

(I must have looked like such a blissful idiot driving around today – think Brian Reagan)

Transitions Abound

September 13, 2007

This is my attempt at medicine.

Due to my Dad’s office move, Verizon decided to cut off our Internet for two weeks. As you can imagine, this doesn’t bode well for the work-from-home, Internet-based-company employee. And, as the planets continued to align, my boss and his wife (aka my old volleyball coaches), who live ten minutes away, took a vacation to Paris as a retirement gift for the wife. To make things worse (Internet-wise), my neighbor’s wifi flickering on and off all day and never put out enough signal for me to get a connection.

What was I to do as a Web Developer without Internet? Work at Panera.

For a total of eight hours between the past two days, I’ve pampered myself with coffee and sweets at the local Panera and worked on whatever needed to be done online. To my surprise, here I found my old bosses from when I worked at Panera five years ago. Funny thing was that this wasn’t the Panera I worked at; it was the Panera across town.

We really go through so many transitions in life. When you expect them, you feel – to use a cliche – the calm before the storm, and that’s what I feel now. I knew sitting in Panera that soon I’d be sitting in our new apartment in Montoursville and that this “inconvenience” of working in Panera was only temporary. Extending that thought, I know that when we go home from that apartment, my Mom will be living in a new house. For that matter, my Dad’s house won’t feel the same as it does now, which doesn’t feel the same as it did before I left for college.

Why are some transitions scary? Why do we sometimes hate our present situation and put all hope is in the next big transition?

I would never file my current situation in either of those rhetorical questions above (thankfully), but reflecting on these things makes me realize just how often things change and how natural it is.

No moral here – just easing Mike’s barren blog blues.

Eagles Tickets and a Poker Victory!

September 11, 2007

The glory goes to God on this one! *Jon points to the sky*

My neighbor and long-time friend, Ben, asked me if I wanted to play poker last week. My reply? “Duh.”

So we played the other night and found out that they run tournaments with thirty or forty people every night of the week. Oh, and they’re free. Oh, and they’re within walking distance of my house five nights of the week.

Wa-freakin-hoo, baby.

Aaaand, I won. I won!!! Last night, I was on the fence about even going, but my Dad worked late, so I had nothing to do. Then my friend Ben didn’t come, so I debated some more. THEN my boss needed some stuff done before I could head out, so I wasn’t even sure if I could make it. I got there a bit late, and I stinkin won!

Then I found out what the prize was: Eagles tickets!!! YES! I’ve never been to an NFL game, let alone an Eagles game, so I’m pretty pumped. They couldn’t tell me what game they were for, and they have to contact me sometime this week to even give them to me, but boy is that sweet – I hope I can go.

Anyway, God does get the glory here. I definitely played very well throughout the tournament, but I caught about five or six lucky breaks at crucial times (good hands when all-in, hands holding up, etc.). I thanked God at just about every level (whenever I thought of it). I could barely contain my excitement when it hit afterward. Wow. Ok, that’s all. 🙂

Treasure Hunt

September 11, 2007

When I was little, I liked the time driving between my parents’ houses. I used this time to think. So, now living five to six hours away from my future wife, I enjoy having the driving time back in routine every few weeks.

Sunday night’s drive home was especially thought provoking as it pertained to math. I love to think about puzzles, and math seems to me the purest puzzle – it’s an obsession at times. Anyway, I couldn’t get around this one concept, so I resorted to finding my old math book at home.

I couldn’t find it anywhere.

I searched my room, my old room, and even my drawer (each of us kids had our own drawer underneath the TV) in the family room. Nothing. But, I was determined to find it, and I realized I must have asked my Dad to put some of my old books (this was not the only old math book in my collection) in the crawl space in the basement. I had to find it.

I mustered the courage to bat away spiderwebs and entered the three and a half foot high, cement chamber. I found a box of books! No, I found about seven boxes of books! This came as quite a surprise to me, and I took my trip down memory lane. I found tons of old sketchbooks and books on various kinds of math. I even found some old Calvin and Hobbes books. What really surprised me was that I found my New Living Translation, the one I thought was a victim of the Fairmount house! Now I have two of those Bibles Haha; one is going to my Dad now :-).

Time in the post where I try to save it and make it applicable to the reader: is there a memory you haven’t visited in a while? Do you have old books or hobbies that you’ve forgotten about? Perhaps then you’ll find your own warm, fuzzy feeling that I found searching between 1 and 2 AM Sunday night.

Changing It Up

September 2, 2007

Alrighty, it’s time. It’s time I change the layout of this blog. As you’ve been reading, I could not refund my CSS Upgrade, so I’m using it on this blog. Also, there’s no way I’ll be able to run another blog, seeing as I can’t even post daily on this one :-P. SO, look forward to some fun changes to the design of this as I start having fun with design and layout and stop taking blogging so seriously :-).