Archive | February, 2012

Forgetting the Times Past.

28 Feb

Sometimes I get caught in between moments. I freeze, and my mind start wandering into parts of my brain that otherwise wouldn’t have been accessed. My eyes fix a gaze in the distance, but really, my mind goes thousands of miles away…away to my childhood. Sometimes I forget that kind of childhood I had. Sometimes, seeing where I am now, it’s hard to believe the travels I’ve had, the things I’ve seen, and the people I’ve met along the way.

Fred. From what I can remember, he was my first best friend. It wasn’t like, our parents were friends and we were forced to meet or anything. He was the first friend that I had chosen for myself. He is actually the reason why I have glasses (well, genetics might have something to do with it but…). I remember over the summer, Fred left, and when he came back he had glasses on. What was I thinking wanting glasses in 3rd grade? Here’s a little secret. When my parents were gone, I would turn the tv on and switch to a channel that just had the buzz and snow. And I would put my face 1 inch from the screen and look at the tv for as long as I wouldn’t get caught, thinking, that’s how I’ll get glasses. Oh the stupid things I did. Fred and I were great friends. But I was sad for him. Fred had a horrible father. I remember, being over at Fred’s house, and his father would come home and immediately start yelling. And not even in a “I’m the man of the house, get me this, get me that..” kind of way. It was terrifying. It felt like his intent was to injure. It felt like he was looking to hurt someone. My heart broke for Fred. But he kept that part of his life hidden from me, for the most part. Another thing about Fred is that he had turtles. For some reason, I had a crow (I know, right?). Somehow, someone caught a crow or raven, and decided to give him to me. I kept him in a cage in our balcony. Well, long story short, he died quite quickly. And it just so happens that one of Fred’s turtles died. So, naturally, we buried our departed pets in my backyard. We even had gravestones made out for our dearly beloved. I”m still friends with Fred. The innovations (and evils) of these social media outlets have allowed me to reconnect with him. We’re still thousands of miles apart, but, it gets a little closer when I think about the times I spent with him.

Everyone has that childhood friend, and I can definitely name more (Edel, the compulsive liar, Oliver, the bully, Sarah the flirt, Katrina the first love, Sharon the first crush) I’m sure they’ll make an appearance sometime here on the blog, but for now, let’s end with my friend Fred.

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Weekend Warrior does Tea Time.

27 Feb

I had a pretty relaxing weekend. We definitely started off right – not getting out of pajamas until 11. Aaaaahhhh… the life. After slowling getting ready, we went to run errands. But the good thing about that is, we took my truck inside of our car. I love driving my truck on a sunny Vancouver day. The afternoon was spent on the couch snoozing in and out of consciousness, a bit of gaming, mostley cuddled next to my wife under our comfy blankets. The evening was spent with some great friends, me taking some time to put an honorary nephew to sleep, and tea time with the other honorary nephews and nieces. Apparently, my imagination during tea time is wilder than that of a 3 and 4 year old, but we still had fun. Sunday, was normal, home from church, under the blankets again. So overall, a great weekend of relaxing.

Reflective Series. Sacrifice Gets You a Ship.

22 Feb

I had a bright thought this morning. I thought I’d change things up and start writing a series for a change. I’ve been recently going on a rant about things that, quite honestly, bear me down, frustrate and upset me. So, maybe this change in direction will refresh my writing spirit, and even expand my outlook on life.

Reflective Series. Although I’m not quite old enough to write a memoir, There are things still that need be written down. And why wait, anyway, until my life has past to reflect? Shall I become a gray old man, before I can appreciate the little moments in my life. What if I forget them? What if they lose their significance? What if they are lost forever?

Sacrifice gets you a Ship.
Growing up, we didn’t have all the fancy things, although, we had a very privileged childhood. Our childhood was, unusual. Growing up in a foreign country, with your friends from all over the world, things have a way of redefining the word “normal”. One of the things that kept life “normal” was the beloved video game. The one in particular is the game GALAGA. You remember it right? You’re just flying through space, minding your own business, when these busters come swooping down in serpentine maneuvers and you’re like, “Heck no.” To make things worse, they start setting up in front of you like the red-coats in formation. Then you decided to start busting through to get to the big bosses. All is good, until they start swooping down and firing back. Engage evasive maneuvers. Not only that, the bosses some how get the edge in technology and apply a tracking beam to repo your ship! That game was awesome. But then one day… I’m not sure how it came about, how the gossip began, or how the secret was found… we realized that if you shoot down the boss that’s got your repo’d ship, you can have TWO SHIPS AND DOUBLE THE SHOOTING POWER!!!! Whoaaaa!!! From then on, there was no way I would be playing that game with just one meesley ship. The problem is – its a gamble. You don’t always get the ship. Sometimes, you end up losing both ships. The problem is, you end up losing all your ships. HA! Worthy gamble? or not?

There’s an element of risk when you sacrifice your one ship to be taken. I think there’s a point when you either resolve that you will definitely, without a shadow of a doubt succeed, or you resolve that the act is already a total loss. I knew, that everytime I played that game, the risk was always worth it. Did I always win? Did the sacrifice always pay off? Probably not. Is every sacrifice, every risk always a good thing in the end? Only when you’ve accepted complete loss even before the sacrifice was made.

hmmm…

Friday Bloggin’ ……. back from Hiatus.

17 Feb

Happy Friday!!!

N o t h i n g to report on. Just tired, mundane life. A lot of frustration. Also, realized this week that I’m void of joy when it comes to Sundays. There is something deeply wrong there. I have more joy and praise on my ride home from work in my truck, than a full day of Sunday worship.

Why am I here? Why am I doing this? Why do I keep doing the same thing and expect different results?

If I even had an ounce of courage, things would actually change.

Man — dude, snap out of it! Find joy in your life. Find joy in music – a evening of music therapy sounds like a good remedy for these blues.

Does it Exist?

14 Feb

I decided to do a search in a certain Canadian city for a church. I typed in: “(city) Church King James” into the google search form. I was trying to find out if this city had any churches that used the King James Version only. What I was really looking for was a Church that had the right balance of Praise and Doctrine. What I came up with was a whole list of “hokey” country, old time, really lame websites of these archaic “baptistic” churches.

I sunk back exhausted, and discouraged. I fear that the church that I wish to be a part of doesn’t actually exist. I know that there is no perfect church, but there are far too many who are content with being imperfect. Here’s my ideal church:

Doctrine: I wish for a church to be correct doctrinally, who firmly stand on the King James Version, and adhere to Biblical (not traditional) Standards.
Worship/Praise: I wish for a church that is willing to sing new songs (that are doctrinally correct) and won’t try to emulate rock concerts (A church is a sanctuary, not a party). I believe a church that has a high regard for the Holiness of God, will always keep in perspective the methods and practices they implement in their worship service. For example, a church who thinks highly of the Holiness of God, won’t let someone talk about Jesus, like He was some “homie” who just wants to “chill out” and “hang” with His “bros”. No. If Jesus walked in the room, we would all fall to our faces and worship Him. We wouldn’t be able to even look at Him. He’s not my “bro”, He’s my Lord and Saviour. He is the Creator of the Universe. He is Alpha and Omega.

Is this church somewhere? And can you come to my city?

Friday Bloggin’….Natural Worship

3 Feb

I’m going to stay on this thread of worship for just another post.

In our churches, we hold so dear to our hymns as if they were inspired by the Holy Spirit. We take songs like “the Old Rugged Cross” and “It Is Well” and uplift them like they were songs from the mouth of God. Why do we do that? Why do we adhere to songs so vehemently? And when someone tries to challenge those songs we get so defensive, like it was a matter of sin?

How did people worship before the first hymn book was published? How did we worship and praise God before the piano was invented? How did we magnify God before the first note was ever penned on a blank measure of paper?

Well, people did worship God before the magical hymn books were created, before the first note was written, before the first piano crafted. People worshipped, in my opinion, in the most natural, most honest way that we could possibly worship.

I believe that before pianos, notes, theories of syncopation, timings, tempos, crescendos, and decresendos, there was a way for us to worship God. For some reason, we’ve decided to put worship in our terms, within our theories. We’ve decided to imprison our praise within notes and timing, style, and preference. What is wrong with us? What is wrong with North American Christianity that we think we can define praise and worship by its mechanics? Is God concerned whether our voices slid or not? Is God concerned that our music is too fast or too slow? Is God also defining Praise and Worship by the Hymns that we hold so dear?

I think not.

“Now wait, that’s my child you’re talking about…”

2 Feb

Well, I’ve written the intro to this post about 100 times in my head. I realized that I should stop beating around the bush, and get to the point.

Today I had a thought about CCM music and how we baptists approach it. Well, you know that we are to run from CCM or new music like it was a leper. I don’t know how many times a preacher has slandered, mocked, and ridiculed CCM artists from the pulpit. Well, this thought turned into quite a convicting revelation.

I thought of Paul and the council of Jerusalem. It was the new church, post-ascension, and a lot of the doctrines we know and read today weren’t even written yet. What happened was that Peter and the other disciples in Jerusalem began requiring that all non-jewish converts would begin following after Mosaic laws like dieting and circumcision. Well, when Jesus Christ was on Earth, He broke down all the Mosaic laws and taught us that the laws were meant to show us our insufficiency to be holy and righteous before God. The  Pharisees got caught up in the laws, and added more and more laws, when the purpose of the law was to teach us that we couldn’t keep those laws. So Paul comes to the council of Jerusalem and asks them why would they (Jews) require saved gentiles to follow the laws that they (Jews) couldn’t keep them themselves. Jesus Christ had freed us, broken the shackles of the laws and of sin, and in its place He gave us His grace and mercy and salvation- which no law could ever provide.

I think of CCM artists who have been slandered and mocked from our pulpits – why do we hold them to a standard that we can’t keep ourselves? Is it our place to put such high standards on other Christians? I don’t thinks so. When we receive a Truth from God’s Word, we are to implement that Truth in our lives in the form of a standard. And from that standard we formulate rules — but we have to understand that we have no power to implement those rules on someone else – unless they subject themselves under your authority (i.e. church authority). For example, if I had kids, they are to follow the rules of my house. My neighbour’s kids are not subject to those rules. There would be a problem if I went into my neighbour’s house and started holding their kids to my rules.  BUT, if the parents decided they needed me to babysit their kids, well now the neighbour kids are under my authority, and my responsibility – now they are subject to those rules.

Then I started thinking about what Jesus thought every time we slandered these men and women. We always use this picture of Heaven, how the Devil starts accusing us of our sins and our wrong doings, then Jesus Christ steps in and says, “Wait! these are my children! They are mine! I’ve redeemed them with my own blood! I took their punishment for them!I Love Them” I wonder if every time we’ve slandered one of those CCM artists, if Jesus is in Heaven saying, “Now wait, that’s my child you’re talking about. That’s my son. I love him. I died for him….”

I was broken hearted about this. What are we doing? What are we saying from our pulpits?

— yammering uselessly