Friday, December 28, 2007
But noooooo...instead my car stalls, and here I am a few miles west of Athens waiting for roadside assistance to tow my car and Krista to pick me up. I have a feeling it's going to be a long night.
Tuesday, December 25, 2007
Regis Philbin and Kelly Ripa are hosting the show live.
Here's some actual dialogue...
Kelly: Wouldn't it be great to get a makeover from Mickey and Minnie?
Regis: That would be one for the books, wouldn't it?
Gee, wonder if they're ad-libbing this?
Saturday, December 22, 2007
Good grief. It's bad enough I get this crap from bigger companies, now the local paper is doing it? Has anyone else got calls like this?
Friday, December 21, 2007
Sorry; I'm just sitting here in the doctor's office, head in a fog, rambling.
Jim am not sick. Jim LIKE doctor's office. Jim like to feel yucky at Christmastime.
If you have no idea who Bizarro is, sorry about that. Of course, you should if you've seen Seinfeld.
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
As a matter of fact, as I was laughing about this and taking this picture, some mom walked up with her son who was about 9. She said, "Hey look, footy pajamas." His response was a rather hasty "No."
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
Saturday, December 15, 2007
Well, I drove up to the speaker and began to tell them what I wanted - what order should you do stuff in? Usually you order your combo first and they ask you the size. So then, I ordered one of the combos, and then I told her I wanted it "Large". So she says through the speaker, "Hold on, now I gotta start all over." Good grief.
She was about as nice with the rest of my order; I suffered through it and pulled around to the first window to pay they guy at the first window. We completed the entire transaction without exchanging a single word. He didn't tell me how much, he didn't tell me "good afternoon". He didn't tell me "thank you", "please drive to the next window", or even ask me how I was. Isn't it weird that he took my debit card, ran it, handed it back to me, and never said a single thing?
So I get to the last window and the manager seems nice. She gives me my food, and while she's going after some extra sour cream I asked for, I checked my order. They got everything right. So now I'm in a conundrum. Generally, they're pretty polite in the drive-thru. But they almost always get something in my order wrong. Either they forget the straw (and I have to run around the entire building at work trying to find one), or they give me a normal sandwich instead of the ketchup/pickle/mustard-only I order. Or, they like to be funny and when I say "no cheese, extra pickle", they give me cheese and no pickle. But they rarely get it right.
So do I prefer the kindness? Or the efficiency? What would you prefer?
Saturday, December 08, 2007
Tuesday, December 04, 2007
Of course, this wasn't some random person with a letter to an editor, it was a paid ad from another church. I guess I could see that. If Jesus were alive today, he wouldn't be feeding the hungry or healing the sick. He'd be tearing down churches with bulldozers.
I'm just feelin' the love this holiday season!
Sunday, December 02, 2007
I think I'm addicted to anger. I'm not sure what it is, but besides the normal anger issues - frustrations with people, road rage, etc. - I get into this crazy obsess mode sometimes when I'm driving. I end up dwelling on things that make me crazy - things that make me so angry I practically see red. It's almost like I'm drawn to getting angry.
I remember when I was younger and I used to read the comics in the newspaper all the time. There was a comic strip called Rose is Rose, and it used to get on my nerves (it's still out there; I looked at it, and it's still stupid). I never liked it, but I used to read it every day. And it would annoy me every single time. It was about this couple (her name was Rose), and they had a kid named Pasquale. Pasquale? What kind of name is that? Anyway, I just hated the strip. The ironic thing is that in the strip itself, the dad would read the comics in the newspaper, and he would always read this strip that made him mad - you could tell he was reading it when his little word balloon would say things like, "Grrrr." And Rose was always asking him, "If it makes you so mad, why do you keep reading it?"
So, kind of like reading the comic strip I didn't like every day, sometimes I just find myself thinking about frustrating situations, or people that are toxic to my life, and dwelling on them, and working myself into a crazy frenzy of anger.
Okay, maybe that's too much confession.
Things seem to come full circle. A little while back, I used to read stuff written by this certain author. And it always used to make me so mad. They just wrote stuff that was mean, ugly, and hateful - and their writing wasn't that good anyway; plus they seemed to be really popular. But I couldn't stop reading it. Though it wasn't religious, it was like what Mike Cope calls religious porn - you know that religious writing that you know you shouldn't read because it makes you crazy mad, but you just have to keep reading it. It's like you can't stop. And so I would keep reading stuff by this author. And Krista would always ask me things like, "If it makes you so mad, why do you keep reading it?"
I don't know...
Qutoe of the Day: James 5:16
Thursday, November 29, 2007
What is wrong with our world?
I was truly in love and married my dream girl.
But if I would have known she didn't have good credit, that would have made all the difference.
Because, heck, what's love when you're talking about material possessions like owning your own home?
I guess "for better or for worse" applies to everything but credit.
Saturday, November 24, 2007
Remember Street Fighter 2? When Krista and I were in college, we use to while away the hours in the student center trying to beat Balrog and Major Bison (good ol' Freed-Hardeman). Maybe that was more me, but I think I got her to play a few times. And Blanka was my favorite. That's actually his picture - not mine - in the profile. In case you didn't know.
Apparently, Capcom is coming out with Street Fighter IV. Just watching this trailer makes me want to pick up a new video game system so I can play it.
Check it out.
And if you can handle some language, check out the hilarious Street Fighter: The Later Years. Zangief and Dhalsim round up the gang to capture some of the old magic.
Saturday, November 10, 2007
Thursday, November 08, 2007
Sunday, November 04, 2007
I was driving home, listening to Total Axxess - an evening radio show out of Nashville that plays on the local WAY FM Christian station. The DJ was talking about confessing horrible things that you've done - though more in the vein of social faux pas. Someone called in with the following story. Now, it almost sounds like a joke to me - something you might forward in e-mails, but the guy tells it like it's something that really happened to him. I tried to Google it, but had no luck. Maybe it really is true.
The story he tells is that one day he is driving down the road, and this guy gets behind him and starts honking at him like a crazy person. He just won't stop. The guy keeps driving behind him and honking and honking. Finally, the guy telling the story gets sick of it and turns around and flips the guy off.
Now, at this point I figured he was going to get home and feel bad because he left his gas tank open or something and the other guy was trying to tell him.
But no, it's better.
He ends up at some point washing his car. It's then that he finds that his wife has put the bumper sticker on his car, "Honk if you love Jesus."
The moral of this story is to always remember - you're always sharing your faith, regardless of how your acting. What kind of impression are you making?
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
Thursday, October 25, 2007
Saturday, October 20, 2007
I know there must be some sort of anti-Jim conspiracy. Hey - just because you're paranoid doesn't mean they're *not* out to get you.
Friday, October 19, 2007
Glad I could start your weekend off on a happy note!
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Thursday, October 11, 2007
Tuesday, October 09, 2007
Only because - you know, I'm crazy and I obsess about things.
Anyway, most guys (especially around here) would have said, "Hey, Josh - nice home run the other day," or "That was a great game you played against the Mets."
But, what did I say?
Because - you know, I'm cool?
"I've been reading your blog on the Times Daily."
Yeah, I'm a great big dork...
Sunday, October 07, 2007
Saturday, September 29, 2007
What kind of God do you believe in?
I know a lot of people who don’t believe in God, or at least don’t want to be a part of a group of people who believe in God, because they turn on the TV and see a God that doesn’t make sense. They see a God of hate; a God who is primarily angry; a God who is mostly concerned with telling people how bad they are; or just maybe a God who wants their money.
If I believed in those kinds of gods, I wouldn’t even be here today.
I believe in a God of love and of mercy – like his students thought of Him when Jesus walked the earth and wrote about Him after He left. I believe in a God of power and of wisdom, like the ancient writers wrote about. As a matter of fact, I find that most people, in an attempt to explain who God is, try to make him very small, whose nature we can prove with science; or someone who we can carry with us in our pocket, to justify our personal views on morality; or someone who agrees with our political beliefs.
If you don’t like that God – the God you’ve seen on TV, that’s probably not even the real God.
I like what the writer Donald Miller said about this whole thing. He said, “it makes me wonder if God created us in His image, or we created Him in ours.”
Miller talks about how so many people during the time of Jesus thought they had God figured out, but that Jesus was always going around saying things like, You thought it was this way, but I tell you this different thing. Miller says that if you thought you knew everything about God, Jesus would have been completely annoying.
I think part of the reason Jesus came was so that we could get a better picture of who God is. When we see Jesus, we don’t see a God of hate, or a God of anger. We see His love and compassion. We see who He spent his time with – and it wasn’t with the religious people. It was the people who truly needed Him. I’m not trying to say that God doesn’t get angry, or that Jesus didn’t angry – as a matter of fact those times are recorded, too. But you know who he got angry with? Not the people that were living lives that some of us would call immoral. No – he saved his anger for the religious folks. It was the people who thought they knew who God was – who thought they could explain Him to everyone else or use Him to justify their lives.
I definitely need to do a better job of showing people who God really is. Jesus said that people will know we follow Him by how much we love. Is that how we're showing we follow Jesus? I think that a lot of what I learned about God, that I learned by being at a church like we have here. A group of ordinary people who follow an extraordinary God. If you're looking for a church home, CrossPoint is a great place to be.
So, if you know somebody that doesn’t believe in God, find out what God they don’t believe in. It may not be who God really is.
Monday, September 17, 2007
Saturday, September 15, 2007
Monday, September 10, 2007
Sunday, August 26, 2007
I'm doing a lot of sighing these days.
I'm getting old. Have I said that before?
It's amazing how much more difficult it is to get in shape the older you are. That's not even counting the fact that it takes all this extra time and money that's just floating around in the air, ready to be grabbed.
Or maybe that was a dream I had last night.
Find time to exercise - along with finding time for all the other important things I need to do.
And it's amazing how much more expensive it is - not to mention inconvient - to eat healthy. You can grab a box of Swiss Cake Rolls for a buck, and it makes a pretty filling meal. But, you want to eat healthy, it's going to cost you, and it's not going to be quite as quick. It takes more time and preparation to make a turkey-sausage-egg-cheese-hot-pepper-in-a-whole-wheat-tortilla burrito than to grab a sugar-laden breakfast bar.
And speaking of time, why does it go so fast now? Labor Day is next weekend?!? Didn't we just have Memorial Day?
[pic from Friday night's commute home]
Tuesday, August 21, 2007
Thursday, August 16, 2007
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
Monday, August 13, 2007
The Creation Museum recently opened in Petersburg, KY. I've never been comfortable with the idea of a "creation science". Science is something that helps us learn about the natural world. I don't deny its usefulness in helping us come to a knowledge about the physical world around us. However, when we start talking about God and creation - that's all in the realm of the supernatural. By definition, outside the purview of science. In that sense, I would go along with the detractors in saying that "creation science" is an oxymoron. Not in the sense that science is "Good and Right" and creation is "False and Wrong", but in the sense that they lie in different worlds and are concerned with different ideas. I've been rather disappointed with what time I've spent reading creation science research. You can't call something science if explain away the holes in you theory by citing the supernatural power of God.
I don't think you can call that "science". As soon as you start to step into the world of the supernatural, or the realm of miracles, you leave the realm of science. Science cannot speak to those things. That doesn't make them any less true. But we've somehow bought into the notion that science is all powerful and if it cannot explain something, then that something cannot exist. Science did not always exist; it did not pre-date man. It is a useful tool we have to help us explain the world around us - it's not a magic box through which we can divine all the answers of the universe. Maybe there are some that believe that but it doesn't begin to make sense for someone who believes in God to believe it, too.
Creation Science seems to me to be predicated on the fact that science should hold this divine place in our lives. Once the world came under the view that science was the fount of all knowledge, suddenly, people who believe in God needed it to explain God. I don't know if it's an attempt to prove it to other people, or to ourselves. Suddenly, Science is more powerful than God. If Science cannot explain God, then *poof* - we have no faith, no premise for our beliefs. When did we start to worship this god, Science?
Now, I'm not saying that those who argue on the other side are any better. I've spent my time in the world of science and have seen enough folks using research to prove what they already believe to know that we all have this problem of wanting to be right.
But trying to marry these two different entities deifies science while reducing to God to something that needs to be explained by us. Philosophers and psychologists have libraries devoted to how and why man created God - why are we on the same road? It's a step backward; not a step forward. It's just another attempt by us to force God into a box.
This last quote from an article about the museum in the Florida Baptist Witness sums up my problem with this whole thing.
"Several museum displays assert that the debate over the origins of man comes down to a choice between human reason and God's Word."
Have we forgotten that human reason is pretty much synonymous with science? So if we are going to reject science, how can we call it science? I think it just makes God into a demigod subservient to Science, the true Supreme Being. This doesn't mean that I don't believe in a God that created the world; I just don't think that science can define God and prove creation. It's just too limited.
Join us next time as Jim argues that it doesn't make sense for Intelligent Design to be taught in science classes.
Saturday, July 28, 2007
My friend Chris Haddock pointed out to me yesterday that the Times Daily (our local paper) ran an article about dead blogs last month. They pointed out his brother's blog (Heath's thanks for stating the obvious) and another blog I link to at the right (Brad Crisler's). They also noted that Jeremy Swindle (our new youth minister) has an abandoned shoutlife (a Christian MySpace) blog, but I'm not sure that counts.
So, is Web 2.0 fading, or just going in a different direction? I guess I don't really blog to connect with people (though that is a nice side benefit). I blog because I've always wanted to keep a journal, and need an outlet for the stuff that goes around in my head; because I like comic book movies and wanted to create a resource for other people who have the same interest; and because I like to track weird stuff I come across.
Though most of the people I know with links to the right seem to blog to keep in touch; so maybe it's not so dead after all.
Sunday, July 22, 2007
Mark taught an interesting class this morning about Judge and prophet Samuel and King Saul.
I empathize with stories like this one, or the one about Abraham and Sarah.
When Abraham was about 75 years old (and his wife Sarah about 65), God promised him children. When he was 86, childless and barren, he and Sarah thought, "well, obviously God's waiting on us to do something". So Sarah gave Abraham her maid to...well...you know. And they had a son; about 15 years before God's plan. They were supposed to wait on Him.
At one point in his reign, King Saul became impatient. The Israelites were at war with the Philistines, but Saul was to wait a week for Samuel to show up before giving some offerings to God to ask for help before attacking. After seven days, and seeing the Philistines assemble, and his men about to run scared, he gave the offerings himself. Again, the wrong thing to do - Samuel showed up and told him that because of his disobedience, his kingdom wouldn't last.
I am, by nature, a procrastinator. I put things off, and put them off. Krista knows this too well. So, when I tell her that I think I'm supposed to be waiting on God for something, her mouth says, "okay", but her eyes say, "yeah...uh-huh..."
I realize that nowhere in the Bible does it say, "God helps those who help themselves," but I also believe that God doesn't want us to sit on our hands and do nothing until he gives us a yellow-brick road to follow. So at what point do we get off our butts and actually do something? When do I know whether or not something is in my time, or in God's time? Is it something that we should know, but we don't because we're too out of touch with God?
Quote of the Day
Where I am right now is a direct result of God working in my life.
Saturday, July 21, 2007
So, Sunday evening, in Chattanooga, we headed from the hotel over to the mall. We couldn't decide which way to go, so, looking at our handy map given to us at the hotel, we decided to cut through the middle of town even though there were larger roads going around the city. At that point the torrential downpour began. We were driving through 1/2 foot-puddles in the middle of 3rd Avenue in downtown Chattanooga.
It must have been providence, because we were diverted by standing water and trying to follow directions on the map, and ended up going over a large bridge where someone stood next to a car beneath a half-destroyed umbrella, getting drenched. When I saw them, I was sure they looked like they had just called and were waiting on someone - even though they weren't sitting in the car and were getting poured on. It's amazing at how well I analyze a situation. Well, Krista suggested we make a U-Turn and see if she needed help. We pulled up, and Shirley was standing there in the rain, out of gas, without any money, crying, with no one to help. So we got got a gas can at the station a block down the road and when we got back to her car, her hands were raised in the air and she was shouting, "Thank you, Jesus!" So, we took her to get her enough gas to get her home, and after telling us how we showed up after she prayed for God to send someone, she was on her way. I wondered on this Sunday evening, how many people that called themselves Christians drove by and had a good excuse to not stop. I think it wasn't until a while later that I realized that I was those people.
Ironically, I think that if we had actually ended up going to church that morning, we would have had a different day, and wouldn't have had that opportunity to actually do the Lord's work for a change.
I still wonder why I don't take what Matthew recorded Jesus saying in Matthew 22 or Matthew 25 more seriously.
Got back from Seattle - missed the family. Krista says something in or under the house smells bad. She's been through the whole house, cleaning every corner, especially in the kitchen and can't find anything. Something's rotten in the state of Manchester.
Saturday, July 14
Dragged all the crap left by previous owners out from the crawlspace under the house. Had to crawl what seemed like 20 feet in to find an 18-inch, half-melted, maggot-infested 'possum skeleton. When I showed Julianna, she told her Mommy it was a baby dragon. Actually, it does look kind of look like a baby dragon.
Sunday, July 15
Krista fell in the bathtub (happy birthday!) I think she's OK, but she's still feeling it. We left early for Chattanooga. The 3-hour trip seemed like it took 7. Krista and I never were quick travelers, but when you throw a 5-year-old and a 4-month-old in the mix, things take forever.
Sunday evening and most everything was closed, we headed over to the mall and were deciding where to go for a birthday dinner when we had a visit from God. Read more about that in my next post. We ended up at P.F. Chang's - Krista's favorite. Our server was great, and the cook even came out to share a hot sauce creation he had been working on for four days. Great food as usual.
Monday, July 16
Panera Bread, hazelnut coffee, asiago cheese bagels with cream cheese...mmm...breakfast. Checked out downtown Chattanooga and the RiverWalk. Loved Blue Skies - visit this little gift shop if you ever go to Chattanooga. Saw the carousel and let Julianna play in the fountain. Headed to Sticky Fingers for dinner. Not bad, but should have gone to Mellow Mushroom.
Tuesday, July 17
Another 3-turned 7-hour drive. Before we left, we had a late breakfast at the City Cafe Diner. The host could have been John Waters's twin. A little later, someone entered who could have been in a John Waters film - 50-something, fairly large, spilling out of her top, black eye make-up and a bowl cut. Hmmm...
Went to Candyland , a bit non-plussed (it looks way better in these pictures), then headed home, stopping by Unclaimed Baggage on the way. Picked up the original version of Vanilla Sky on DVD (a Spanish film - Abre los ojos). Skipped out on the $100 comic book statue. Home again, home again, jiggety jig.
Sunday, July 15, 2007
Tuesday, July 10, 2007
Monday, July 09, 2007
Sunday, July 08, 2007
I was pleasantly surprised then, when I went to see Evan Almighty recently with my family, that it really wasn't watered down.
In the movie, God tries to impress upon Evan the importance of kindness. Of the need for us to randomly commit acts of kindness to others. I'm sure there are a lot of people who follow God, and a lot who follow Jesus (or say they do) that think this might be an oversimplification, but I'm not so sure.
It was the heart of the message of Jesus. If you're familiar with the Old Testament, then you know the Jews lived by a long list of rules that God had given them. Jesus was a Jewish teacher, and those who specialized in the rules tried to trick Him at one point, asking Him which of those commands was most important. And Jesus answers directly. The first is, Love God (found in Deuteronomy). The second is, Love others (found in Leviticus). Jesus says that these are the most important rules - that all the other rules hang on these.
He said other things, like, people will know you are my follower if you love each other. Or, if someone smacks you in the side of the face, give them the other side to smack; or if someone steals your jacket, give them your shirt, too; or if someone forces you to do some work, do twice as much as they're forcing you to do.
I know I've said a lot of this before, and maybe I'm beating a dead horse, but he even said kindness - caring for people in need - was what was going to separate the people going to Heaven from the people going to Hell.
Jesus was full of crazy stuff like that. Stuff we don't like to teach in church. Stuff that we don't think is very American. Stuff that tends to be real unpopular, except maybe as a fad every once in a while, but not to be really paid attention to.
Of course, Jesus walked the walk, too. Talking to the people no one else wanted to talk to. Spending time with the losers, outcasts, and those that church people thought were bad.
Being God's ambassadors, it's just something we so often skim over, and spend very little time on - it's interesting to see that secular entertainment hits the nail on the head.
So, am I trying to say that being kind is all there is to following Jesus? No. But, then again, He's the one that said it was most important.
Sunday, July 01, 2007
Even Max. He's not quite four months old, and he sat through the whole thing, wide-eyed, watching the big screen.
Another movie buff in the family!
And now I'm hungry for some ratatouille...
I realize this thing has probably been around the internet for over a year, but someone e-mailed it to me and I watched it for the first time a couple weeks ago. The great thing about this video is that it gets funnier every time you watch it. I can watch it several times in a row, and by about the 3rd or 4th time, I'm peeing my pants. Take a look if you haven't seen it.
Now, remember laughter is the best medicine, and if you're having a bad day, watch it at least 2 or 3 more times...I promise it'll get better...