30 December 2006

Reading List

I mentioned previously that I had a lot of new books to get through. For those intersted in what I'll be diving into (or am already in the middle of), here you go:

Currently Reading:
  • Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien
  • A Problem From Hell: America in the Age of Genocide - Samantha Power
  • The Cost of Discipleship - Dietrich Bonhoeffer
  • Through Painted Deserts - Donald Miller
Will Be Reading:
  • Orthodoxy - GK Chesterton
  • The Aboliton of Man - CS Lewis
  • The Four Loves - CS Lewis
  • The Problem of Pain - CS Lewis
  • The World is Flat - Thomas Friedman
  • God Is Here - Steve Case
  • Searching for God Knows What - Donald Miller
  • Under the Over Pass - Mike Yankoski
  • A Generous Orthodoxy - Brian McLaren
Need to find the Time to Re-Read:
  • 1984 - George Orwell
  • Mere Christianity - CS Lewis
  • The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien*
The good news: This should keep me busy for a while and away from television.
The bad news: With my schedule this semester, I wonder if I'll have the time to get through this list.
The worse news: I have to buy six new textbooks, the cheapest of which is $80. I wonder which organ I should sell to pay for all of them.

Shalom, Drew

*I read The Hobbit in seventh grade and failed to grasp what it was saying. This is round number two.

25 December 2006

Merry Christmas

First and foremost, as the title says, Merry Christmas.

Second, here's the deal. It's the winter break and I'm still busy. I'm working my way through The Lord of the Rings, The Cost of Discipleship, and A Problem from Hell. And I just got two new Donald Miller books and The World is Flat. So I'll be reading a lot and then starting back with classes, and unfortunately not posting much. But when I do post, expect some really awesome stuff. Because nothing is cooler than a Miller-inspired post that ties into Friedman and is written to the Lord of the Rings soundtrack (probably the best thing I got this year).

Shalom, Drew

15 December 2006

Happy Hanukkah

Yes, I know somep people are wondering why I, a disciple of Christ, am commemorating a Jewish holiday on my blog. First, let us examine the history of this festival.

The festival commemorates the Maccabee family's revolt against Antiochus IV and his imposing Hellenistic beliefs on the Jewish community. In 167 BC, Antiochus ordered a statue of Zeus to be erected in the Second Temple. Mattathias Maccabee, a priest, along with his five sons, led a rebellion against Antioch. This rebellion was succesful and the temple was cleansed in 165 BC. According to the Talmud, oil was needed to burn in the temple every night. However, there was only enough for one night. Through the grace of God, it is said that the oil lasted for eight nights. According to 1 Maccabees, though, Hanukkah is an eight-day celebration of the rededication.

This brings me to my point. Regardless of the reason of the celebration, it is still a commemoration of God's caring for his people.

And that is worth celebrating (even without the presents).

Rock on.

13 December 2006

One Semester Looking Back

Finals are done. Life is now easier. But another sixteen hours looms just on the other side of the winter break. I stand at a point where, assuming it only takes me four years to get through my BA, I am 1/8 of the way through college. Now is a good time to look back.

It seems like just last week that I boarded a plane in Kansas City heading for orientation. And it seems like just yesterday that I headed to Christian Campus Fellowship (CCF, but more on that later). The semester has really flown by. But at the same time, it seems as if the friends I've made have been my friends since birth (I certainly pray that they will remain friends until death).

I started this year not knowing what was going on, and as such, went through three main stages. First came the excitement of being out on my own. Nights up until three, waking up only minutes before class. Enjoying the all-you-can-eat meal plan (four or five times a day). After deciding against ROTC in January, I singed up, intending on seeking a scholarship again. And I very quickly settled into the Wesley Foundation, the largest campus ministry with some 500 members. As it turns out, though, UGA is something of a party school. Short of drinking, there isn't much to do. And finding a group of friends out of 500 people is harder than it seems. ROTC was a disappointment, as UGA ROTC may be the best demonstration of the opposite of good leadership. So here comes the second stage, where I seriously considered transferring to a smaller school. Then, my heroic sister decided to introduce me to some friends she had at CCF here (yea for having a big sister within 60 miles). After attending three events with the sub-100 group, I very quickly found a group of friends (almost instantly with the other 11 freshman, and by the weekend with the rest). Enter phase three, which can only be known as awesomasity-rocious. I'm now quite happy at UGA, even without frat parties, and have never been closer to a group of friends. I would estimate that well over half of my free time is spent at CCF or with other CCFers.

And now, for the all-important lessons learned:
-You can skip class, but you shouldn't.
-Same with eating five meals a day.
-And staying up until three in the morning.
-Your dorm room is small. Even one sock on the floor makes it look and feel like a pig pen.
-All-nighters should only be pulled when absolutely necessary. Because by the end, a light bulb will make you laugh. And the fact that a light bulb just made you laugh...will make you laugh.
-Facebook is addictive.
-You used to be smart. When you get to college, you won't be anymore.
-Seeing spots means you need sleep. Or more caffeine.
-Dorms are scary places. It is best just not to ask questions of the drunk guy in the hallway.
-Exception to the previous rule: If he's passed out or puking, make sure he's alright.
-Your mini-fridge might explode on you.
-Coffee is good. Conversation is good. Conversations at coffee shops are great. They are even greater when it's after midnight.
-Finals are evil. Midterms are less evil, but only slightly so.

And I just got back from my last late night coffee shop run of the semester. I'm going to go try to sleep off the nine caffeine drinks I've had since seven this evening.

Rock on.

06 December 2006

Happy Saint Nicholas' Day

Today is the feast of Saint Nicholas, patron saint of a lot of things (but not of winter holidays and reindeer).


28 November 2006

Hiatus the Second

Finals. Projects. At some point, hopefully sleep.

I'm busy again, so don't expect anything until the thirteenth.

I know, my three loyal readers are heart-broken, but my grades (and scholarship) need rescuing.

Shalom, Drew

Edit: One assignment down, two to go, plus finals. Two nights in a row at the library til 1:30. Bleh.

23 November 2006

Happy Thanksgiving

Praise the Lord.
I will extol the Lord with all my heart
In the council of the upright and in the assembly.
Great are the works of the Lord;
They are pondered by all who delight in them.
Glorious and majestic are his deeds,
And his righteousness endures forever.
He has caused his wonders to be remembered;
The Lord is gracious and compassionate.
He provides food for those who fear him;
He remembers his covenant forever.
He has shown his people the power of his works,
Giving them the lands of other nations.
The works of his hands are faithful and just;
All his precepts are trustworthy.
They are steadfast for ever and ever, done in faithfulness and uprightness.
He provided redemption for his people;
He ordained his covenant forever -
Holy and awesom is his name.
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;
All who follow his precepts have tood understanding.
To him belongs eternal praise.

- Psalm 111

20 November 2006

Eye of the Storm

The following words and pictures were written and taken during my trip to the New Orleans area to clean up after Hurricane Katrina. It has been over a year since the storm hit and the area faces at least another four years before it is completely restored (thanks to the work of various organizations, this is down from the fifteen year estimate originally given).

11/18/2006 - It's a little after one in the morning, central time, and I'm in New Orleans. We're camping in an old elementary school. Driving through, signs of storm damage are obvious. On approach to the school, the Hoovervilles of trailors are set up and fenced off. Houses sit in ruin, and several have trailosrs set up in the front yard. The school itself is fenced off, the fence crowned with barbed wire. The bottom floor of the school has been gutted and the top floor shows the spartan conditions that the students had been learning in pre-Katrina. Our beds are box springs and mattresses on the floor, but it still gives us a roof over our heads. Just arriving here has made me feel so blessed.

That Evening - The day is done and the results are in. After all was said and done, we had cleaned up three buildings. We woke up at 6:30 and were working by nine. The first house had remained almost untouched since Katrina. Mold ran rampant. There was still food in the pantry and water in the washing machine. A black goo had formed in the fridge. Our first task was to remove everything from the house, including the food, carpet, and floor boards. Everything. Then came the walls. By the time we were done, only the ceiling and frame were left in tact and there was a debris pile over six fee high outside. After lunch, we moved on to our secound house. Our objective this time was to remove the ceiling from an already-gutted house. Along with the rotted remains of the fiberglass insulation. Part of the house still had water in it. This water had come to resemble the ooze from the fridge. Our third building was a two-story duplex. The watermark was four feet from the floor. On the secound story. The lower level had been gutted, but the upper rooms still had the belongings of one's life left behind.

I'm sitting in the gym at the old schoo now, though, honestly, it looks more like a military instilation than a school. But in spite of all the horrible surrondings, there are glimmers of hope. Several of the homes are decorated for Christmas.

The title of this post comes from a Blindside song and is in recognition of the fact that while the city is now calm, there is a long way to go before the disaster can be considered over.

Rock on.

13 November 2006


School work is temporarily taking over my life. I have a ton of stuff due this week, then I'm off to New Orleans for a weekend mission trip. I'll try to start posting next week, possibly as late as Thanksgiving Break.


08 November 2006

I Can Only Hope to Be Peter

Matthew 14:22-36

Peter catches a lot of crud. He proclaimed Christ and was called the Rock on which the Church would be built, but also denied knowing Christ and sank when trying to walk on the water.

But let us take a closer look at his little stroll on the Sea of Galilee. First, the context. John the Baptist had just been killed and Jesus withdrew. However, people followed to hear him speak. This is where we hear that famous story that we all remember from Sunday school: The Feeding of the Five Thousand. Afterwards, the crowds dispersed and Jesus sent the disciples away on boat while he prayed. The disciples hit some rough water and then see a strange figure on the water moving towards them...on foot. "And now," to quote Paul Harvey, "the rest of the story."

The disciples did what any red-blooded human would do - flip out. After Christ assured them, Peter calls out to him. This is often translated as "Lord, if it's you, tell me to come to you on the water," and this is often seen as Peter's first mistake (doubting Christ). But "if" could be better translated as "because". The NIV study note says it is "A condition assumed to be true." Peter is telling Christ that he will follow him, even in the seemingly impossible. And after having the faith to step from the ship to the sea, Peter gets scared and begins to sink. But here is where things get interesting: his first response isn't to try to save himself and swim back to the boat. Matthew tells us that he calls out to Christ for salvation.

I can only pray that when I start to sink, my first reaction is to call out to God.

Rock on.

The Simulated Economy

The economy is normally one of the biggest voting issues for presidential elections. Anyone will tell you that. But have you ever thought about our economy? And the global economy as a whole, for that matter?

Look at a dollar bill, or whatever piece of currency you have laying around. What is it worth? Can you take it to the government and get a dollar's worth of gold or silver or anything for it? Not anymore. Our currency is entirely theoretical. The dollar's value is derived from faith that when you give it to someone, you get something back for it. Dollar in soda machine, Coke out of soda machine. Five dollars to cashier, cheeseburger from cashier.

Bonds are based on the idea that you give money to the government and you get it back. A currency of currency, in a sense.

Stocks are just the same. The value of stock (non-prefered stock, that is) is dependent not only on how the company performs, but also (and more so) on the supply of the stock. How many people are buying it? How many people are selling it? You give money to a company, and assuming that the company does not fail, you can sell it to another person, assuming that that person is willing to pay for it.

Keeping this in mind, it makes sense that the currency in the game Second Life should have an impact on the currency in the "real" world. Currency in Second Life is a currency of currency as well. You give the Second Life makers your money, assuming that you will get Second Life money back. You use the cyber SL money assuming that you will get SL goods. You sell those goods, knowing that you will get SL money. You transfer the cyber bucks to "real" bucks, assuming that when you give the "real" money to someone, you will get something back.

In short, this cyber economy is every bit as real as the US economy.

Rock on.

Edit: It has been brought to my attention that this is the nature of economy. The point was made that gold has an assigned value, just like the dollar. After pondering it for a while, I realized that gold was used as a currency because it was a commodity, just like salt. A gold-based currency is a version of a barter system.

07 November 2006

Today, I Become a Disillusioned Youth

It's official. Today was election day, and I voted. But barely.

Now I see the vicious cycle in it's entirety: Politicians don't care about students because students don't care about politics. Students don't care about politics because politicians don't care about students.

I was able to register to vote on campus. This is good. Both the Young Republicans and Young Democrats had registration drives. And that's as far as it went. Outside of registration, there were no movements on camus to get students to vote or even concerned about politics. A few facts to consider:
  1. Despite claiming a campus of 30,000+ students plus faculty and staff, there is no polling site on campus.
  2. There was no organized system to get students to their polling places, despite an enormous campus tranist system. I had to get a ride from an intern at CCF.
  3. My polling place was on the completely opposite side of campus from me (and about three miles away from that side of campus, in the middle of nowhere), despite other polling places being closer.
  4. Outside of the attack ads on TV, there was no attempt to educate students on issues or candidates.
  5. Students registered in other states and precincts were unable (and unwilling) to get through the red tape to get their absentee ballots. Some planned to drive home to vote, but classes got in the way.
I know two other people who voted. Only one of them was a student.

On the note of not being educated enough to vote, I almost decided not to vote. Simply because I didn't know anything about any of the candidates running. The one thing that got me to the polls was the tax issue: I wanted to vote for the Special Local Option Sales Tax.

I hope people do a better job in two years when the election matters most.

Rock on.

06 November 2006

When Satan Uses the Church

Today was fun. We had a group of protesters, for lack of a better term (though religious nut-ball fits just as well), held signs in front of the Tate Student Center telling all who saw and heard that they were going to Hell. It takes a turn for the worse here, as part of their message was that Christianity is not the answer and that those who thought they were Christians were going to Hell for listening to their respective churches instead of God.

Given my short temper and low tolerance for stupidity, I did what I do best: yelled. I grabbed my Bible and, at the top of my lungs (and louder than I’ve ever yelled before), read 1 John 4:7 to them and the crowd. After the main “preacher” mocked me (much in the manner that I mocked my sister when I was five), and told me that I was not a Christian, I announced to the assembled crowd (weirdos always draw a crowd) that God loved them.

And this brings me to my point: Satan can use the Church and believers as effectively as he can use anybody else. The obvious example here is the protesting group. But what about me and the other people who were arguing with/yelling at them? Did people get our message that these people were wrong? Or did they just see people who claim to follow God yelling at people who claim to follow God? By shouting the Word, did anyone get my point or did they just see another version of a protester? One person thanked me for what I did, but she was one of those arguing with the protesters.

Feet, meet mouths.

Rock on.

Guy Fawkes Night

"Remember, remember, the fifth of November; the gunpowder treason and plot.
I know of no reason the gunpowder treason should ever be forgot."

03 November 2006

College Randomness

College...is random. So very random. Very very random. And now I'll tell you why.

Yesterday, I spent three hours at CCF washing cars. And then went home, showered, came back for evening activities, and spent another six hours there. Doing things like making brownies. And discussing biblical family structures. And carrying people around on my shoulders. Now I'm sitting in the CCF house typing this.

Today, I went to my Geology class and we had a pop quiz. However, the teacher told us we could get our answers through "a collective effort". She told us we had five minutes, then stared at us. Laughing, she said in her Argentinian accent, "Why aren't you going?" After four minutes of us yelling across the room of about eighty students, one girl stood up and shouted all five answers. The entire class ended up getting an 80%.

Anyways...college. It's random.


02 November 2006

The Rat Brains Are Taking Over!

As if an online game that impacts the economy wasn’t enough, researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology are growing cultures of brain cells from rodents on electrodes. These electrodes are hooked up to robots, which are, in turn, able to navigate mazes, follow objects around a room, and even draw.

To me, this screams I, Robot. Or even possibly Borg. Sci Fi aside, what is the use of this? The possibility of transplanting human brains into robots (yea for living forever!) is ruled out as the cells must be grown on the electrodes. Creating drones raises more questions then stem cell research (surely, having a human mind, and therefore, soul, qualifies one as human).

So, real cyber pets? Another "real" simulacrum?

Rock on.

31 October 2006

Here I Stand, I Can Do No Other

Happy Reformation Day.

On this day in 1517, Martin Luther posted his 95 Theses to the door of Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany. The world hasn't been the same since.

Luther, a Augustinian monk, spent his life in fear of God's judgement. He saw no hope for salvation in the Church, which had begun focusing on works as a means for salvation, and using Purgatory as a tactic for selling indulgences.

Luther went to Wittenberg to study at the University, earned his doctorate, and most importantly, realized the importance of salvation by grace through faith.

After the posting of the Theses, Luther was excommunicated, but refused to recant, leading to his famous saying at the Diet of Worms:
Hier stehe ich; kann ich keine andere tun; Gott helfe mir.

Which, translated, is "Here I stand, I can do no other. God help me."

As Luther continued to preach, many of the local princes followed him. While it was a long time before true religious freedom was found, it broke the Roman Catholic church's five-hundred year monopoly on western Christianity. The Reformation also served to divide the Holy Roman Empire between the Protestant and Catholic states, a pretty distinct line between north and south.

The Reformation and Counter-Reformation brought the Renaissance into the Church. Luther utilized the movable-type printing press (developed by Johannes Gutenberg a century earlier), the vernacular, and wood-print cartoons to spread his word (Albrecht Duerer was heavily influenced by Luther). The Catholic Church utilized art to combat Luther's teaching.

But perhaps the most important impact of the Reformation was that it brought religious life out of its stagnant state throughout Europe. After Luther posted the Theses, the average citizen started to stand up and take notice of what was going on.

Rock on.

Edited and expanded on 31 October 2008.

30 October 2006

Taps - In Honor of a Fallen Pioneer

This past weekend was fall break for the University of Georgia, and as so many people, I joined the mass exodus from campus to return to my old watering hole, Leavenworth, Kansas. During the three days before break began, I had received some saddening news: a graduate of my high school, only three years older than myself, had been killed in action during the War on Terror. I had attended school with his brother. I knew people he knew. His name was still mentioned by my friends.

The viewing was held at Leavenworth High School and members of the LHS JROTC served as ushers. The funeral director had requested four cadets to hold doors and direct people with in the school, and being an important task, the call went out to senior cadets. However, more than four cadets showed up. There were twelve, all in uniform, with six others in civillian dress asking if they could help out. Ater the viewing, the funeral director asked the cadets to carry the flag-drapped casket out to the hearse. Never before has the LHS Corps of Cadets performed such an honourable task, and they did it with great professionalism.*

The next day was the funeral. There was a request that the members of the military community line the streets of the Fort for the procession. The turn out was astounding. As the hearse drove slowly by, not a sound was made, but the point was made clear. This was one of our own. He died that other may live, the least we could do would be to show up in support for his family.

Rest in Peace, Corporal Unger.

*This portion of the account is second hand and provided by LTC (ret) David Black, SAI of LHS JROTC.

22 October 2006

Giving - The College Edition

2 Corinthians 9:6-15

When I first read "You will be made rich..." I immediately checked my wallet, hoping to find a $5 bill (or, preferably, larger) I had forgotten about. No such luck.

Many of us, especially college students, think that we can't give back to God because we don't have enough for ourselves. I mean, we are in college and facing new expenses. At least $300 on books per semester, food, toiletries, and laundry. All of this was provided before and we have to buy it now. Plus, there's "entertainment expenses". New CDs, movies, going out to eat.

And forget about time. If we want to go to class, get our work done, sleep, eat, keep clean, and spend some time with friends, then we have no time to give back.

Of course, all of these are nothing more than excuses. Half of my"entertainment budget" for this semester could feed a starving child in Africa for over two months. And time? I have a problem. I can't find the time to do anything. That doesn't mean that it's not there. I just haven't found it. This is because I refuse to wake up more than thirty minutes before class and spend time I should be working on my favorite addiction: Facebook.

Now what does this mean? Is every single disciple called to take a vow of poverty? No. But all disciples should be very careful with their resources.

The Lord will provide something for you to give back to him. You just have to find it.

Rock on.

Post Script: Yea, it's been a while since I've posted on the Bible. Why? Because I planned on doing my quiet time in the mornings. However, as I've said, I sleep in the mornings. So please bare with me as I try to wake up in time to spend some time in and with the Word. And prayers are always appreciated.

18 October 2006

The Ultimate Simulacrum

It started with epic poetry, I think. Yeah. Using fiction to escape reality. No matter how bad things got, you could always escape to the accounts of Gilgamesh or Odysseus. From there, it spread to plays (why imagine what happened when you can see it?) After plays come movies. With movies, you can see the exact same play multiple times. And the dawning of VHS, DVD, and downloads allow you to see it whenever you want to.

Somewhere along the history of fiction comes the game. Little kids heard a story or saw a play and decided to make it their own (every kid has been there at some point). These games advanced, slowly at first, with role playing games, where you got to build the character up over time, making your own little world with your friends. These eventually gave way to computer games (the first games were RPGs where you typed in commands). These led to Sim City, which, like plays, kept the player from having to imagine the setting. And then the game the very quickly swept the nation: The Sims. You could create a character, give him a job, let him go on dates, or anything you imagined. After a few years, the game became available online, so that you could play with people across the globe.

And now: the final stage. A simulation so far removed from the original, from real life, that it has become the original, that it actually affects real life. Second Life. It is The Sims, only it is played with real money. You exchange US dollars for virtual money and with that, you can open a virtual business, sell virtual realty, or buy virtual clothing. There are over one million players. People make six digit salaries playing this game. Congress is even debating whether or not to tax income made playing it.

So we have gone from reality, through a complete cycle of simulacra (a copy of a copy), to a hyperreality ("The simulation of something which never really existed." - Baudrillard) so real that it has an impact on the economy and the government.

We are now faced with a question. Not "Where is the line?", as I think we noticed the line when we crossed it (when people started waiting in lines a week long and getting in fights for the latest gaming systems). The real question is "How do we get back over the line?" Or are we so far gone as a nation that our culture will move from Hollywood (itself a simulation of the royalty of Europe, sans bloodlines) to online?

Rock on.

15 October 2006

Paul Rusesabagina

On Thursday, October 5, I had the chance to see Paul Rusesabagina (the inspiration for the movie Hotel Rwanda) speak at Georgia Tech. Having both seen Hotel Rwanda and read his autobiography, An Oridnary Man, I jumped at the opportunity to hear one of my heroes speak.

Most of his speach was a condensed version of his book. But at the end of his speech, he said something that stuck with me. He said that his book and his speech were his message, his insight into the failure of humanity in all regards to Rwanda. The audience, being college students and the future leaders of the world, were his messengers. It is up to us, the rising generation, to step up to the plate and carry out the promise Never Again.

"A sad truth of human nature is that it is hard to care for people when they are abstractions, hard to care when it is not you or somebody close to you. Unless the world community can stop finding ways to dither in the face of this monstrous threat to humanity those words Never Again will persist in being one of the most abused phrases in the English language and one of the greatest lies of our time." - Paul Rusesabagina, An Ordinary Man

13 October 2006

All Hallows' Eve

All Hallows' Eve, or Halloween as it is commonly known, is a day of remembrance. It is not the devil's birthday (I don't know where that rubbish came about) nor is it a harvest festival (We already have one. We call it Thanksgiving). Many churches boycott this holiday, saying that it has pagan roots. Yes. Yes it does.

The Celts of the British Aisles celebrated a day they called Samhain on what is now known as October 31 (they used a solar calendar, so the date is pretty exact). It was the day on which the god of the dead ushered those who had died over the past year (you see, it is also their equivalent to New Year's Eve) to the realm of the dead (The seasons of autumn/winter coincide with this. Make sense?). As part of this celebration, many of our modern Halloween traditions (costumes, gourds with lit interiors) get their start.

To combat this, the Church created it's own celebration to commemorate all saints on November 1 (All Hallow's Day, or All Saint's Day). The day before is, of course, All Hallow's Eve. So, yes, churches, it does have pagan roots. But so do Christmas (Why else would the celebration be in the winter? It was originally the Celitc celebration of the solstice.) and Easter (The Jews use a lunar calendar. Easter doesn't even always follow Passover. The timing coincides with the Celtic celebration of rebirth and Spring. They call it Ostara.)

Interestingly enough, one of the most important holidays of the Church (Easter) and one of the most shunned (Halloween) are nothing more than the life cycle celebrated by the Celts (Life and Death, Fall and Spring).

So what about celebrating these holidays? I firmly believe in remembering the dead. Do I need a special holiday to do that? No. But I have no objection to setting aside November 1 to be thankful for the believers who came before me. Christmas and Easter? Remember the birth and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ always. Do you need a special holiday? Again, no. But does it hurt to lay aside one day of the year?*

Now the economic take over of these holdiays is something different. Trick or treat? The Easter bunny (a Celtic tradition as well)? These are pointless, but fun.

As for churches? Harvest Fests (or, as at certain military posts, the Halelujah Fest)? You're not fooling anyone. By wearing costumes and carving pumpkins, you're avoiding the Christian aspect of the holiday and embracing the pagan roots (Irony, thy name is fundamentalism).

Rock on.

Edit: *Oddly enough, Christmas and the feast day of Saint John the Baptist fall on or near the equinoxes, two other major pagan holidays, to symbolize John's saying of the Christ, "He must increase, but I must decrease." (John 3:30) Just so, light begins to decrease on John's feast day, and increase just before the mass of Christ's birth.

30 September 2006

Fences and Good CDs

For those who haven't heard, congress approved the building of a seven hundred mile long fence along the Mexican border. It reminds me of an old joke. A Frenchman and an Englishman find a genie, who grants them one wish. The Frenchman asks for a ten-mile high wall surrounding France. He doesn't want anything to be able to get in or out. The genie grants it, then turns to the Englishman. "Nothing can get in or out?" he asks. The genie says, "That is correct." "And there are no gaps in the wall anywhere?" the Englishman continues his inquiry. "That is also correct," the genie replies.
"Well, in that case, I want the wall to be filled with water."

Building a wall is possibly the biggest waste of tax money ever. Should we contact the builders they used in Berlin?

Also, everybody go out and get the new mewithoutYou ablum, Brother, Sister. It's amazing.


26 September 2006


I got back from class this morning to find a massive puddle of water by my fridge. Never a good sign. I figured it was my ancient AC system, so I cleaned it up and went about my life. Neither my roommate nor I noticed a trail of water leading to the AC system, which we figured was weird, but meh.

As I finished cleaning it up, I noticed it was coming from my fridge. I opened my fridge to find it hissing at me. Not good.

It's leaking coolant.

Am I gonna die?

20 September 2006

On American Culture

It has recently been said that the wave of immigration from Mexico is destroying our culture.
This cannot be further from the truth.

When a person speaks of American culture, he shows his true ignorance. America has no culture. At least not one to call its own. America was founded on immigrants from all over the world. English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, Polish, Czech, China, Korea, Laos, Nigeria, South Africa, whereever. After some tension at the initial influx, there cultures were embraced and have become integral to that of America.

There are things that are unique to America, to be sure. Various forms of music and food come to mind. But each of these drew from the cultures that surronded it, like a crystal drawing from the material around it to create a unique color.

It seems that many of those who are upset about this sudden influx of foreigners are Irish-American. In the nineteenth century, the Irish represented the largest number of immigrants coming into the nation. They were asked to leave their culture behind. They refused. Today, Irish culture is one of the most celebrated in America. Everything from the local pub to Saint Patrick's Day to the rise of celtic punk are owed to that refusal.

Many nations face a "problem" with defending their cultures. France has passed various laws to protect what they see as unique about them. Now, they face the issue of the large number of north African Muslims coming into their nation and the resulting xenophobia. Canada faces the issue of the Quebecois trying to protect their culture. It is threatenting to rip the nation in two.

America has always stood out among nations, asking for the weak, the poor, and the huddled masses. We have taken the cultures of many and made them one.

Why stop now?

Rock on.

09 September 2006

Life In Exchange for Life

Isaiah 43: 1-13

As I have previously mentioned, Jewish Messianic tradition poses two views on the Messiah. One is that he will be human. The other holds that the Christ will be God himself. This passage from Isaiah makes it fairly clear that God will be Isaiah's only Savior.

He does, however, say that he will trade the lives of others for those of the Israelites. This can certainly be seen in history, with God favoring the Israelites over other nations. It can be seen more dramatically in the death of the prophets, who were given to Israel to show them the way, but were in turn killed. But once again, all is not as simple as it first appears. We once again arrive at a point where a prophecy has multiple fulfillments with one crowning fulfillment.

Jesus' death on the cross for our sins (and therefore, our lives) was the ultimate fulfillment of the prophecy.

Rock on.

Godly Sorrow

2 Corinthians 7:10

Regret is a bear. Every time someone stumbles, they go through a moment of reckoning in which they realize the mistake they made. And it hurts.

There are two ways to deal with this. The first is to spend a while in self pity and hate yourself, but then to get on with your life.

The second way is to repent. This means that you realize your mistake, turn it over to Christ, accept his grace, and let him help you change. Some argue that to not spend time dwelling on the fact that you sinned belittles Christ's death on the cross. CS Lewis argued that to do otherwise is the true belittlement of the Sacrifice. After all, "It is finished."

Rock on.

01 September 2006

Update...U P D A T...ummmm....Y?

Ok, so...for those who don't know, I am indeed at college in Athens. And it's fun. Colllege is so much better than high school.

I've gotten involved with the Wesley Foundation on campus and it's a great group of godly (yea for alliteration) students. For those who dont' know, the Georgia Museum of Art is on the UGA campus as well, and while I haven't toured the galleries yet, they do have film nights, so I got to see the 1931 Weimar German classic The Blue Angel. They also have one dollar movies at the student center.

The guys in my dorm are...college guys. We're all pretty weird and different. But it's fun. My classes are going pretty well (for those who don't knowe, I'm taking Geology, English, World Religions, Statistics, and ROTC (which means my hair's short again...*sad face*)).

And now for the things I've already learned from school:
  • Despite what you may think, getting up for a nine o'clock class is hard.
  • On a related note, yes, you can stay up til three in the morning. And no, it's not a good idea.
  • Just because you can eat the same thing for four meals a day doesn't mean it's a good idea.
  • "I'll do it tomorrow" is the world's worst motto (I've been meaning to do this update "tomorrow" since I got to school).
  • Having time between classes is nice. But it gets boring. Really.

20 August 2006

Jewish Views On the Messiah

I have entered a World Religions course and our first religion to examine is Judaism. For those who are interested, we are reading Huston Smith's The World's Religions.

The first and underlying theme in the chapter on Judaism is that the Hebrew faith is unique in that it finds meaning in everything. God, life, suffering, and the Messiah.

Taking a look back at messianic tradition, it comes from the Hebrew word mashiah, which means "anointed". Throughout history, it has been used to refer to those who have been "anointed" by God, meaning mainly leaders of the nation and faith. The tradition of THE Messiah comes from the longing for an ultimate leader and redeemer (this tradition, while some propehcies can be found all the way back in Genesis, really got its start during the Babylonian Captivity of Israel).

There are several views on what THE Messiah will be. Some believe that he will be a political leader, helping the people of God to conquer their foes. Others believe that he will be a religous leader, renewing the faith of the nations. There are also views that he will be a literal person, a king or prophet better than any before. Others beleive that God will be the Messiah, that he will skip using a man and do the job himself. Those who thought that the Messiah would be human figured he would restore the Davidic monarchy, while those who thought that God would be the Messiah expected him to do away with government.

But here's the cool part: They're all right. During Jesus's time on Earth, he was a religous leader, founding his Church and telling his disciples to share his Love. When he returns, he will gather his people and set up his Kingdom. And both times, he was fully man and fully God.

Rock on.

09 August 2006

All You Need is Love

1 Corinthians 13

Ok, I'll admit it. I like the Beatles, so the title of this piece is biased. But that's alright with me.

John Lennon was correct when he wrote those lyrics. They are some of the most profound, and yet blatantly obvious words, ever spoken. And probably somewhat misunderstood. Because in today's society, love is anything but Love. Love has been used to express feelings ("I love music") and the status of a relationship ("We're in Love"). Love is seen as something that happens. One little change, and the Love is gone. But that's not how it works.

In this chapter, Paul reminds of the characteristics of Love. Love is what makes spiritual matters important. Love is perfect. Love never fails. Love does not anger easily (this, however, is not to say that Love does not anger). In short, Love is more important than anything else.

Why is this? It is because all Love comes from God. The Love of God, shown on the Cross at Calvary, is obviously his gift to us. But so is the Love for God, family, and friends.

But there's another reason. A deeper one. Love is so much more than just a gift from God, but as we learn in 1 John 4:7-21, God IS Love.

Rock on.

11 July 2006


1 Corinthians 9:19-23

What does the perfect ministry look like? Is it a Billy Graham crusade? Is it Cornerstone?

How is the perfect ministry performed? Through speaking? Music? Writing?

Obviously, this is a hypothetical question. No ministry except for that of Christ has ever been or ever will be perfect. But more than that, there is no formula for the "best" ministry.

The reason for this is quite simple: Relationships. To reach someone, you must be able to relate to them, on an intellectual, spiritual, and emotional level. To reach the Jew, you must become like the Jew. To reach the weak, you must become weak.

To relate to someone, you have to do several things: Hear. This is most important. Speak. But only after hearing. And relating. Not only does this show that you heard, but that you understood and that you know what the person is going through.

And out of the three, relating is most important. It's not only how you can relate to the person, but how God can relate.

After all, Christianity itself is a relationship.

Rock on.

29 June 2006

Double or Nothing

Isaiah 7-11

Everyone knows the prophecies about Christ that are contained hin these chapters. "The virgin will be with child...", "For to us a child is born...", and A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse...". Taken in that sense, they are obvious predictions about Christ. But what about context?

The chapters in which they are contained relate to the invasion of Israel, and the Lord's protection of the same. And this is where things get interesting. Double meanings. Yes, you heard (or rather read) me correctly. The propheices are God assuring his protection of Israel. Twice. Once against various enemies (Assyria, the Lower Kingdom, etc), and later against sin. These prophecies were fulfilled twice. The second time, they were fulfilled perfectly through Christ Jesus.

Rock on.

27 June 2006

A Political Post - w00t

Today, I bought several books to include Common Sense (Thomas Paine) (for those who don't know, this book was the pamphlet that inspired the masses to rise up against the Crown during the American Revolution). As I read it, I find myself blown away.

I first became interested in politics in the ninth grade and my main source of information was Fox News (I watched it religously, but fortunately, I've grown up). In tenth grade, I took a step back to study World and European History (which, after comparing the American Revolution and the Jacobin's Reign of Terror during the French Revolution, greatly affected (effected?) my view of the role of government). During US History, I decided to take George Washington's advice and avoid political parties. This year during Economics, I declared myself a true captialist, advocating merely enough government control to protect the people from their own greed.

As I read through the first section of Common Sense ("Of the origin and design of government in general."), I am reminded of why I believe what I believe. Though a Deist, Paine makes an allusion to the fall of man, saying, "Government, like dress, is the badge of losts innocence...." Paine states that the role of government is to provide security for the least possible intrusion into our lives.

Which brings me to why I am an independent. Aside from the distraction of partisan politics, all parties get it wrong. The Democrats try to intrude economically, while the Republicans try to intrude morally (and though not always a bad thing, they focus on a lot of the wrong things *cough*flag burning*cough*). Third party candidates often hold extremist views (Green, etc).

This post really serves a duel purpose - 1) it explains why I am so weird; and 2) it gives you something to think about (hopefully, I may even convince someone to make the change).

Rock on.

21 June 2006

The Futility of Wisdom

Isaiah 1 and 2
I Corinthinians 1 and 2

I started reading Isaiah and Corinthians wondering what they could possibly have in common. After all, Isaiah is a prophetic book and the Corinthians are letters advising a church. But, as usual, God had a surprise in store for me.

I like to think that I am smart. Furthermore, I try to gain wisdom. After all, Proverbs highly recommends it. So you can imagine my dismay when I read in Isaiah that everything of man (though a prophecy concerning Israel, connections to different times can be seen) will fail. All earthly power, strength, society, culture, everything that is of man. Down the tubes. Including the wisdom of man. There will come a day when God reigns over all the Earth and all of humanity is fully dependent on Him.

In 1 Corinthians, Paul reminds us that true wisdom is from the Spirit, the very wisdom of God. Furthermore, he says that Christ is the Wisdom of God. In such, when we accept Christ, we admit that our wisdom has failed. We become fully dependent on him. When we become dependent on him, we are forgiven.

"'Come now, let us reason together,' says the Lord. 'Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.'" - Isaiah 1:18

Rock on.

19 June 2006

What I Learned In Narnia

I love C.S. Lewis. Ever since I read The Screwtape Letters a year ago, he has been my favorite author. So it may come as a surprise to some who have heard me constantly speak of him that I have not read The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe until now (the movie doesn't do justice to Mr. Lewis's inherent charm).

Like most, I saw something very familiar in Aslan. The humiliating death for sins which he did not commit, resurrection (those to first see him after the resurrection were women, as well), being Son of the Emperor, yes Aslan is the Christ-figure of story. After Aslan's resurrection, he said something that really spoke to me.

"But if she could have looked a little further back, into the stillness and the darkness befroe Time dawned, she would have read there a different incantation. She would have known that when a willing victim who had committed no treachery was killed in a traitor's stead, the Table would crack and Death itself would start working backwards."

What did this say to me?
"For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." - Romans 3:23
"For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." - Romans 6:23
"But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us." - Romans 5:8

Long live the True King
Rock on.

29 May 2006

What Makes a Man?

One issue that has been on my mind lately is: What does it take to be a man? This is a question that I though I knew the answer to. But apparently, I didn't.

There are all sorts of ways to answer this question: biologically, legally, culturally, etc. All of these have set answers. But what about the most important way to be a man: in the eyes of God?

Giving it some thought, I think I may have figured it out. At least partially. Being a man takes wisdom and love. Wisdom to know and APPLY the Word. Love to love God with all your heart, mind and strength and to love your neighbor as yourself.

"Wisdom is supreme; therefore get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding." - Proverbs 4:7
"Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends." - John 15:13

Rock On.

27 May 2006

Late Night Conversations with a Battle Buddy

I don't know how to describe it. Simply inspiring.

Last night (OK, so I got in at One AM and am typing this shortly thereafter. Does it still count as tonight?), I went to see X-Men 3 with my friend, Hunter. That's not the awesome part (the movie was sub-par). Afterwards, we sat around and talked for two hours. The discussion covered almost everything imaginable. It was one of the most intense spiritual moments ever.

I hear people talking about there accountability partners all the time, but have never really had one. But after tonight, let me tell you: hearing people talk about how important they are can never prepare you for when you actually find one.

Go. Get one. Now.

Rock on.

23 May 2006

Graduation and Such

This weekend was, well, this weekend. I got out of school on Tuesday (w00t) and had Wednesday to do nothing (double w00t). Then my grandparents arrived on Wednesday night, I had Awards Night practice and Baccalaureate(sp) on Thursday, followed by FCA (yeah, I went to school at 6:45 after being released), Graduation practice, and picking up my sister on Friday. Saturday held the longest four hours of my life: Senior Awards Night. Then Sunday: Grajamanation (i is edukatet. i is a hi skool gradate!) and the awesomenastic party put on by the school. Oh, the fun.

And today? Uber sleep!

Random rambling about my week aside, there was something odd about Graduation. For the past few weeks (since Prom, really), I've had this feeling of, "Oh, crud. I'm not ready for this." But as I walked across the stage on Sunday night, those feelings kinda vanished. I realized that I'm going to miss my friends, but now I'm moving on to bigger things. No, I'm not ready to make it in the real world yet. That's what college is for.

Rock on.

16 May 2006

Three Years In a Shoebox, Four Years On a Bookshelf

Today is the last day of my senior year. As with the end of each school year, I have turned in everythign: my JROTC uniform, my textbooks, and my library books. My locker has been cleaned out and is now back to the valiant shade of school-gray.

Looking back at four years of high school, I realized something. What do I have to show for it? All of my ribbons, medals, ranks, and other various uniform items from JROTC, three years, worth of memories, are sitting in a shoebox in my room. Four years worth of yearbooks and FCA ministry material now sit on my bookshelf. I can't help but think: Is this all I have to show for my time in school? A few books and ribbons?

Or is there something more? Is there something more to high school than just the activities that I was involved in and the classes I took? In fact, there is. Over four years, I have great memories. Everything from the pseudo-philosophical conversations at Bible study ("They will know we are Christians by are kilts") to the random with friends (filming hobos in Colorado) to the just plain weird in class (Mr. Wisner's analysis of the Smurfs as Communist). I can look back on high school and say that I not only learned the curriculum, but I also learned about life. I can discuss both the impact of World War I on the Vietnam War and why it's a bad idea to eat six Zebra cakes in under five minutes (don't ask).

Rock on.

08 May 2006


I was very surprised by prom. I had been expecting to have a good time with my friends before the dance (which I did), but I actually had fun at the dance. Weird.

Before hand, I picked up Bug, Ruth, Melanie, and Stephen (Steven?), and we went to se M:i III (all of my predictions came true: there was a rogue agent, people wore masks, and Ving Rhames wore expensive clothing). After the movie, to Outback! Four loaves of bread and a bloomin' onion (which lasted two minutes, at most) later, we dropped Steve off and got to the dance around 10. After the dance, we went to Sonic (oh, malts, how I love thee).

In other news, I actually danced. Go figure.

Rock on.

03 May 2006

Today, I am a Man (I Hope)

Today I turned 18. In my mind this is the most important birthday I will have. It ranks one out of three: 13, 18, and 50.

In Jewish culture, when a boy turns 13, he becomes a man after under going a Bar Mitvah. In today's society, 13 still marks the age at which a child gains more trust and responsibility.

50 marks a half-century of life, and all the knowledge that comes with it.

18, however, marks something else entirely. It marks the point at which a person can finally give back to society. Instead of just taking up resources, one can finally work to create them. Instead of complaining about the world, a person can finally change it. Instead of merely enjoying freedom, one can finally defend it.

Rock on.

30 April 2006

Fast Fasting

Wow, I haven't done a rambly, unfocused updated in quite some time. So, here we go...

I had a mock trial this week. I served as the defense attorney. My partner and I got our "client" off on one charge, but not the other two, so I count it as a loss (dumb jury who was only there for half the time, no offense to the two people on it who were).

This weekend was the Thirty Hour Famine, which was going to be awesome. Jon and I were gonna try to make it 48, and there was a huge hike and a camp out, and I had helped plan...and I got sick. I only made it 30 hours, missed the camp out, etc.

Saturday, I went to see the school play, Aladdin (not the best one they've done). Afterwards, Jon, Ruth, Melanie, Megan, and I (and Mack showed up for a while) went to China Buffet (Chinese food at 9. That's fun. Seriously.)

Speaking of Ruth and Melanie, I'm going to Prom with them and Bug. So I'm the only guy in a group of three girls. I'm kinda scared. But it'll be alright (we're going to see a movie before the dance, cause we're cool like that).

After church today (and four donuts), Jon and I went to Burger King. Now I remember why I never eat there.

Oh, and last Saturday was the JROTC Ball. It was ok. Better company than last year's, but other than that, it went down hill, despite the best efforts of the staff. But hey, I got to make a speach (ok, a "salute"), which was cool.

Now if only I could get someone to read my blog...

Rock on.

24 April 2006

Invisible Children

My school is a so-called "Channel One" school meaning that we get a daily news broadcast called (what else) Channel One. Most days, I watch the news segments, tune out the commericials, and talk during their cheesy wonder-teen and health bits. But today something was different.

Now, they have had special episodes before, focusing on everything from cliques to the Sudan (my favorite), but today, something spectacular happened. They devoted the entire show to Invisible Children (see link on sidebar). I've been following this charity organization most of the year and own the documentary, and have been deeply moved by it. I was thrilled to see that Channel One showed clips of the documentary and at the end, interviewed a few of the film-makers. Hopefully, it will move all who saw it to get involved.

Rock on.

16 April 2006

Christ is Risen

I come bearing good news.

Today, the tomb of Christ our Lord is empty.

Rock on.

14 April 2006

Good Friday

Today is the day we remember Christ's death on the cross.

He was betrayed, given a trial, beaten, and crucified. He was mocked and jeered. And all for what? The new covenant.

During the first Passover, the final plague was coming. The first born in every household was to be slain. For this to pass over the Israelite houses, each family killed a lamb and smeered the blood on the door frame. Likewise, God killed his only Son and atoned us through his blood so that the wages of sin might pass over us.

Rock on.

Passover and the Last Supper

Welcome to Passover, the Feast of the Unleavend Bread. For those who don't know, the feast is in commemoration of the Hebrew exodus from Egypt (important parts for feast: Exodus 11:1-12:50).

It was the celebration of this feast that brought Christ to Jerusalem. Christ sends his disciples out to find a room for the meal, and they do. They set up the traditional meal and do what is customary. But then things start to turn weird.

During the dinner, Christ makes an announcement. He is going to be betrayed. Keep in mind that at this point, he has already predicted his death. But betrayal? And furthermore, he tells the disciples that it will be one of them who will do the deed.

After this, they start eating again, but Jesus, being the Teacher that he is, descides to do something unusual with the meal. He took the bread (unleavened), broke it, and gave it to the disciples saying it was his body. Likewise, he took the cup, gave thanks, and told them to drink, saying it was his blood. These sayings have caused a lot of controversy over whether or not Communion is literally the Body and Blood of Christ or whether he is merely present in spirit. But that's not the point of Communion. The point is that Communion serves as the sign for Christ's new covenant. The old covenant declared the Jewish people the chosen people of God. The new covenant declares freedom for the captives, peace, and forgiveness.

Rock on.

13 April 2006

Long Time, No Type

Yeah, so I haven't posted in like two weeks. I don't know why. Probably because I'm either out and about or dead asleep.

So I'll try and keep up from now on (cause I know you all missed me so much).

21 March 2006

I've Become So Numb

Kudos to me on quoting Linkin Park.

Anywho, it's SPRING BREAK!!!

Thursday was phat (do people still say that? Phat?). School was a bit of a drag, but then I got to go to Literary Society, which is a ton of fun. And Bible study was awesome. First part of Romans 8 (look for another update on that soon). After Bible study, my friend, James, and I went to Taco Bell (I love late night Taco Bell runs).

Friday, I was going to hit up stick and puck to practice for the big hockey game on Sunday, but Kurt was busy, and I ended up having a meeting as well. The meeting was to plan for 30 Hour Famine and went really well. I'm looking forward to getting the ball rolling (we announce it tommorow.) What did I do Friday night? Oh yeah. Went to Target (got the Matisyahu album. Eclectic, but good) and had my dog groomed at PetsMart. Friday, I had like five cups of coffee, which as it turns out, is way too much. So that was odd.

Saturday was really boring. But I got to eat at Tampico, which is the best Mexican in town. Went to the PX, and went bowling (combined score for two games <100. I know. I suck.)

Sunday church and Sunday school, par usual. I had three and a half donuts. That's a lot of donut. Then hockey - play off, single elimination. We lost 4-0, but played the best game of our season. So that's it for playing with this team. I really am going to miss them.

Monday? Sit around and worry about today.

Today? Wisdom teeth were taken out this morning. It wasn't as bad as I expected. I was numb for most of the day. I can finally feel my tongue again and my lower lip is starting to tingle, which is better than when I first woke up. But I was really out of it. I can't remember the first half-hour after I woke up, and then there's a lot of blurry stuff. But I can't eat solid foods till tommorow! NO!!!

Rock on (with applesauce, pudding, and yogurt).

13 March 2006

Shut Out and Almost Rained Out

So, yeah, no clever intro this time.

Friday - Got home and tried to sleep, but didn't work. Ate a sub for dinner. Wow. Exciting.

Saturday - Went shopping. That was fun. Grabbed the latest issue of HM and a copy of Utopia. And finally got a pair of Con's (Old School, Chuck Taylor styles, henceforth referred to as "Chucks"). And I got to eat at Einstein Bros, which always rocks. Got home, ate pizza, finished my report on rock music, and went to hang out with friends. That was awesome.

Sunday - Church - tornado sirens went off just before we started the service. And what do you do in a 100-yr old chapel with no basement? Stand outside and wonder what to do. So after my dad made a call to staff duty, it was determined that we should just dive under the pews if we experienced bad weather (which never came). After the service and Sunday school, I took my mom to the emergency room (long story). Then I worked on my Exec. Sum. for a while. I stood outside in the sun, enjoying the nice weather, listening to tornado sirens in the background. That was trippy. As I left for hockey, the sun was setting behind a storm, making for a very cool effect. And then we drove into the storm. I thought we would die. And all that to loose 0-6. Anti-climactic.

Rock on.

07 March 2006

I Interupt Your Regular Brodcast

Actually, this post is just like my normal "update" posts, I just felt like saying that.

So, weekend recap: Friday was cool - I was at school till four, getting a letter of recommendation from my SAI. Then I ran home and got ready to go camping. On my way to the assembly point, I stopped by the post office to mail my scholarship application. In the process, I learned why people hate the post office. Anyway, I made it on time to leave at five, so in review: I got home, packed, sent off my application, and got to the meeting point, all within an hour. Not bad, eh? On the trip, I ran around the woods, ate, and slept. Fun.

Saturday, I left the camping trip early to get home and help out around the house (my mum has a hurt leg, which I haven't mentioned for some reason), do homework (Yeah, right. Like I did homework on a Saturday. But I did try), and catch some z's in a real bed. Then I went on a date, on which everything went horribly awry. Well, not horribly, but awry none the less. I just like the word "awry".

Sunday - HOCKEY! But first, church. The sermon was good, and made a great point about Lent. Then Sunday School went better. And hockey? Well, we were missing a few people, and playing the number one team in the league, but kept them down to only a one point victory. Final? 3-4. Again, not bad.

Umm...shalom (I have decided to use shalom instead of "hello" and "good-bye". Spread it.)

Rock on.

27 February 2006

Regulation Victory

Ok, so last week my hockey team won for the first time, but it was a shoot out. Last night, we won in regulation for the first time this season. That was awesome. 4-2. Yea!

I went to the Jam for Jacob on Saturday, which was awesome. A ton of great bands. And good company. So that was...awesome (has anybody seen my thersarus?).

By the way, (random ranting time! Yea!) if you disagree with someone's idea, please take the time to listen to what they have to say and don't just jump on them, yelling about their opinions. It does nothing for anyone to not allow for different ideas. For the sake of personal growth, allow someone to disagree. Allow for intelligent discussion, not just a shouting match.

Also, I'm gonna be a Bulldog in the Fall.

Also also,I got CS Lewis's Letters to Malcolm and POD's Testify, an amazing book and an amazing albulm. And I'm looking into buying an electric bass. Recomendations are welcome.

Rock on.

21 February 2006

Victory at Last

Friday: Mock trial went well. Then I went home.I slept. A lot.

Saturday: I slept. A lot. Then watched TV. A lot. By the way, the following are movies worth seeing if you have spare time: The Butterfly Effect, National Treasure
The following are must-sees: Hook, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, The Shawshank Redemption

Sunday: Went to church. Helped out with a community event. Played hockey. And guess what?
WE FINALLY WON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
And I accidently hit a guy in the head with my stick and got put in a penalty box. And made a lot of mistakes. In fact, the two goals they got are probably my fault. But we won.
I just finished my mock trial. We lost. The defendant got off on both Murder and Manslaughter. Oy vey (spell check?).
Rock on.

These Are NOT Paid Actors

Romans 5:1-5

I love commercials. And not just regular commercials, but infomercials. Where they claim that they are all unpaid testimonials, these people really used this product and are now perfect. And there is always that little disclaimer on the bottom. "These are not paid actors...yada, yada, yada." And it leaves you with the impression that these people (who barely remember their few lines) really aren't actors (but not in the good sense).

Likewise, every Christian is a walking, talking testimonial for Christ. Indeed, we are not receiving compensation for demonstrating how Christ has influenced our lives.

Now, before people start reading too much into this, I am not saying Christians are perfect in the modern sense of the word. We still sin. We are, however, forgiven, and therefore made perfect through Christ.

...Anywho, this passage offers a demonstration of Christ's impact on our lives. In the words of CS Lewis, we become "little Christs" and as it says at various points in the New Testament, we are "adopted as sons (Eph. 1:5)". God grants you a sense of peace and you rejoice in it.

But wait, there's more. If you call and order at anypoint in your life, you also get to enjoy suffering. Yup, you heard me correctly folks. For no extra charge, you will actually get something out of the hard parts of life. You get perseverance, which comes with character, which comes with hope. And this hope will not disapoint you.

Rock on.

*Disclaimer: jesusfreak8801 is not a paid writer. And it probably shows. Also, it should be known that no offense is meant to the advertisment industry. Please don't sue.*

13 February 2006

Anti-Climactic, but in a Good Way

It was cold this weekend!! Joy to the world, it was cold! For the first time in a month, Snow Creek had a full slope of snow. To celebrate, I spent my Saturday on the slopes. Fun stuff.

Sunday? What can be said about Sunday? Church was cool. Good sermon. But then came Sunday School For the longest time, it has been evident that while I am in a Senior-Junior class, the curriculum is aimed at elementary schoolers. We discussed Jesus calming the storm from Mark. One of the thought provoking questions: what do you think the disciples smelled? Tasted? The one semi-provocative question was what we thought the disciples were saying and thinking during the storm. I bet Luke was wondering if he payed his rent. And Simon Peter was dicussing with Andrew about buying a puppy. What the heck do you think they were saying? "AAAUUUGGGHHH!!! WE'RE GOING TO DIE! THE BOAT IS SINKING!!"

Hockey on Sunday night: 4-1 defeat. The first goal they scored? They shot, missed, it hit the stick of one of my team-mates and bounced in. Second goal was ok. Third goal? They scored even though they were off-sides. Fourth goal was good. I'm not saying we should have won, but we should have lost by less.

Today was the visit of the hate group. It was seriously anti-climactic. I was expecting like thirty protesters yelling and only feet away from the school. But it was actually quite calm. There were only five. And then we had a whole bunch of graduates come back and protest against the hate group, so it was cool.

I finally followed through with a shirt idea. With protesters "hating in the name of God", I decided to set the record straight, so I made a shirt that said "God is Love. - 1 John 4:8" on it.
But I made the mistake of using an industrial sized Sharpie on it. In my room. So last night I kinda go high off of the fumes while going to sleep and had a dream about a cupcake eating me. Then the shirt was putting off Sharpie fumes all day. So I lost a couple brain cells, but I made a point (I hope).

Rock on (in the Sharpie fumes).

08 February 2006


OK, so I just went to the best small concert in the world. This band Silverline (who opened for POD and really rock) played at a local church (including the hardest cover of "Jesus Freak" I have ever heard, which rivals even Tait's rendition). It was held in the basement, with a low ceiling and everything. It felt just like the awesome clubs that I hope to go to someday. However, I can't feel my neck, hear, or speak clearly. So I'd call it a worthwile concert.

So this is a band that plays simply because they love God and want to tell people about Jesus. They work their own merch table, travel by bus all night to get to shows, and work other jobs to pay the bills. I think we need more bands like them.

Rock on.

30 January 2006

Almost Close

Saturday was awesome. I got to sleep in for the first time in close to a month. And then I went to this cool little store called Salt Mine and got two great CDs and one of my favorite movies (Kids in the Way's Apparitions of Melody; Showbread's No Sir, Nihlism is Not Practical; Extreme Days).

Sunday, well, it was Sunday. For the first time since October (I think) my team scored first. We lead the game for a while. And were tied until the end of the second period. Then our goalie let in two shots back to back. We lost. Man, I despise my goalie. Normally, I would take some blame for a loss, as I play defense. But no, the two goals were completely his fault this time. But hey, I took like three different people out (double points, cause all three were like twice my size).

Today was awesome. I got to skip school and go to K-State for Scholarship Day, meet with several Poli Sci profs, tour the campus, and all that cool stuff you do when looking at colleges. And then I got my verification stuff from UGA. Only downers - still had to get up at 5 and had to miss Law class.

Random pimpiness: Read Zach Arrington's Confessions of a College Freshman. It is hi-lar-i-ous.

Rock on.

P.S. - I'll start posting about the Bible again soon, I promise.

23 January 2006

Call to Action

I watched Hotel Rwanda again this weekend. I am now convinced beyond a shadow of a doubt that something must be done. I am going to try to organize a massive campaign to raise awareness for the situation in Africa.

  • Write your congressmen
  • Write the president
  • Give money

I plan on getting involved in the 30 Hour Famine. If you are interested, leave a comment.

"If I was brave, I'd write a letter to the President. Have him pass it to the leaders of our Parliament. But for now I won't say nothing. "
-Hawk Nelson
"Letters to the President"

Rock on.

Rocks A...sleep

First off, sorry I've been slacking on my blog. To my three loyal readers (two if you don't count my mum), I apologize. I'll get my act together.

Moving right along, last night's hockey game was great. We almost won. The final was 5-6 (I think. The point is, we lost by one point). And we would have won had Kurt shown up, but no. He had to watch his precious Panthers lose a play-off game.

I don't know why, but I slept for like an hour and a half after school. I just fell asleep on the couch. But I woke up just in time for dinner, which was cool.

My weekend, how boring are thee? My mother's cure for a boring Friday night? "Drew, we need some half & half. Why don't you drive down to Dillon's and pick some up? And while your at it, you can get yourself a soda or something." So the high light of my weekend came early. I walked into Dillon's and Alex yelled at me from the Deli. Then on Saturday, I ran around in the woods behind the school, then went down to Metro North. Sunday? Church and hockey.

I need a life. Or at least a friend with a life that I can live vicariously through.

Rock on.

16 January 2006

A Dark Night in Hockey History

Wow. My hockey team is so bad...
How bad is it?
My hockey team is so bad we lost 10-2 last night.

Ok, so that's not funny. But it is sad. Incredibly, incredibly sad. I think this makes us 2-15.

Otherwise, it was a pretty good weekend. I bought four great CDs over on Saturday(mewithoutYou, Emery, As I Lay Dying, and Falling Up). Chapel was good on Sunday. And I didn't have school today. So I slept until 11, which is just fun.

And while writing this post, I just realized how incredibly dull my life really is.

Rock on.

Failure to Excommunicate

Romans 2:1-4

Prejudice is one of the great plagues of the modern world. People can and will find anything to judge people on. I must confess that I am guilty of this. It's easy, when you think about it. "He dresses this way and listens to this type of music, so he must be like this." "She drives this type of car and wears this brand of clothing, so she must make this much money."

It goes beyond that, though. We have moved beyond the level of judging a person to a point where we try to decide the status of their slavation. "Well, no one who comes form this background could possibly be a Christian." "No one who has made this mistake will ever be saved." But remember what Paul says: God is ultimate Judge. He will judge based on truth and the forgiveness that Christ brought to Earth.

"Jesus loved the outcasts. He loves the ones the world just loves to hate. And as long as there's a heaven, there'll be a failure to excommunicate."- Relient K

Rock on.

08 January 2006

Lost in the Desert

The barren landscape
No life to support
I wander the land
Lost in the desert

Rock on.

04 January 2006

Lessons Learned While Hitting the Slopes

The following are lessons learned while at Winter Park, Colorado. I hope they are as useful to you as they are to me.

  • Never video-tape crazy, homeless people. It only leads to police involvement.
  • When snowing, always use chains on the tires. Failure to do so will result in you being stuck on a pass for several hours.
  • Altitude sickness can be nasty. Very, very nasty.
  • Avalanches block mountain passes and roads.
  • Always wear a helmet. Failure to do so leads to a concussion.
  • Texas Hold'em is a great way to bring in the New Year.
  • Trees - they hurt.
  • $60 buys a lot of food. Even on the ski slopes.
  • Cold wind is cold.
  • Be weary of the path you choose.

Rock on.