Thursday, December 28, 2006

Merry Christmas to me

So I gave myself an awesome Chirstmas present this year.

Six, yes six, stiches. I know, it is pretty exciting. And many of you are wishing that Santa had brought you the exact same thing. Well, next year just wash some glasses and hope that one of them breaks while your hand is inside it.

You will be happy to know that I am not the only one that was gifted with this awesome blessing. When I was leaving the emergency room, my neighbor was in the waiting room. Guess what she was there for, you got it!! She cut her left little finger, same one I cut, while she was washing glasses. See, that is all it takes.

Hope you had an awesome and blessed Christmas and I am praying for the same for your New Year.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

I have an idea

The problem with ideas usually comes when we share them with others. Well, I decided to share mine. I am toying with the idea of running a marathon. Now, that may cause most people who know me to laugh, and for good reason. But I am really toying with this idea. I have begun to look at some training programs for those of us who don't run. I ran (get it "ran") across one titled, "From coach potatoe to 5k". I certainly fit the coach/chair/floor potatoe catagory. Anyway, there is my idea.

Now I actually have to begin working on it.

Friday, December 15, 2006

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Monday, December 11, 2006

sphere of influence

so i got to meet with some of my friends this morning to begin having a conversation. i have to say that it was pretty stinkn' sweet. even in our first meeting there are things for me that are beginning to be deconstructed and i think that is a really good thing.

one of the things that really stood out to me was our conversation about our sphere of influence. the fact that we have an obligation to share the love of Christ with everybody in our sphere of influence. when we stop and think about it, we have a global sphere of influence. there is really no place on the earth that we are not able to get to. we have no less of an obligation to people in another country than we do here.

this came out of a conversation regarding serving people in other countries. someone said to me once that we should take care of our own country first. i disagree with that. i believe that we have an obligatioin to serve not just our brothers and sisters in Christ, but every person.

so our sphere of influence is global.

Friday, December 08, 2006

I have elfed myself

I found this rather amusing. Here I am as an elf.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Something to chew on.

This is a quote from Tony Campolo.

"I am as conservative as the Word of God and I am as liberal as the Love of God."

Monday, December 04, 2006

last day

well, i am ready to go home.

today was pretty low key for me. i slept in packed and then walked over to meet with my spiritual director. this time was entirely different than my last spirtual director meeting, but just as profound.

i am so thankful that ys provides this for us each year. i was reminded that the best thing i can do is to begin again simply. having felt empty and distant from Christ of late, i was reminded that no matter how far i feel he is right there.

tie that in with what i heard from rvl and the proverb i heard from marko and this was a pretty full cycle for me.

i am so glad that i will get to see my wife and boys soon. my wife has never gotten to go to an event like this. i talked with her about this last night. it will take some saving, but i really want my wife to be here with me next time. i have grown tired of going to stuff without my wife. i have this spritual high and try and explain it and she is like, great... the boys are driving me nuts. I would react the same in her place. want her with me from now on. will have to work that one out a bit.

all in.... nywc was well worth it.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Sunday at NYWC

WOW!!! What a day. So the reason that I came to Charlotte instead of going closer to home was because of Ray Vander Laan (RVL). That was really the deciding factor for me. And I am glad to say that I was not disappointed. RVL challenged me in ways that I have never been challenged. He talked about what a real disciple is and what a real disciple looks like. And let me tell you, I do not measure up by any means. The passion that he talked about a real disciple having, I don't have. But it was not one of those moments that I walked out feeling guilty or down or worthless or whatever. I listened and longed for what RVL was talking about. At the same time I would be the one saying that I didn't want it so bad that I want all the work involved. To which RVL said "Then get another Rabbi!!!! To which I respond, I don't want another Rabbi, I want Jesus. So I realize that I must work. And I will... but where to begin. I walked out and was paralyzed. Not sure how to begin, because it seems so huge.

Later, I was processing this with a friend. It was during that conversation that I was reminded of a quote I heard yesterday. "The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago, the second best time to plant a tree is today." So, I begin today.

This has been an awesome day. I have been challenged, stretched, encouraged, confused, enlightened, amused, and all the others that I could possibly think of.

I am planting my tree today.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

More from Sat.

Lots of Tony Jones today. Listened to him this morning and then again in the afternoon. I have to say that I rather enjoy seeing and hearing him get rowdy. It is fun, at least for me. I am sure that he gets quite tired of it. Here is the thing about Tony for me. The guy really challenges me. He really forces me to think. Which is a really good thing, but sometimes I get scared, sometimes I get frustrated, sometimes I get angry. Angry because I begin to realize that I don’t have a freakin’ clue. I am so far out of my league when I am around these discussions. But I love it!!

Something that he said that stands out to me. I am going to try and get this as close as I can to what Tony Jones said.

-that the Holy Spirit guarded the canonization of the scripture by guiding it through the ages.

I am pretty sure that I got that right or at least the basic premise of what he was trying to say.

Absolutely loved the late night discussion. Really enjoyed the fact that Tony would not let anyone get sloppy with their comments or quotes.

Again, I just sat back and soaked all the discussion regarding prayer and what is the purpose of prayer. And again, I really felt out of my league. But, I am learning that I need to be a part of these conversations. At least a part in that I have a hearts desire to hear them and maybe someday verbally contribute to them.

Tony, keep going. I for one am loving it.

Marko and leadership. It was good. I liked this idea of level 5 leadership. I too strive for that, not there yet but working towards it I hope.

I can’t find my notes from this class so I will have to finish this one tomorrow. My mind is mush right now.

All in, I am loving the convention. Sure there are things that bite a bit, but I love being here. Marko, not sure if you are reading this or not, you guys are doing an awesome job and I thank you.


i am feeling much better about my jedidiah experience today. it actually started off worse after another incident but by the end of the day and some clarification, i like em'.


I heard Mark O. say something today regarding balance. He said that he does not necessarily believe that we can be “in balance”. He said that the only time he really thinks a person is in balance is when the pendulum is swinging from one side and crossing over to the other. Interesting thought. As I reflect on my life and my quest for balance it seems that I can certainly see that has been the case for my life.

More later from the day.

Christian Commercialism

I can’t help but think sometimes that these conventions are the picture of Christian commercialism. Sure, I know that selling stuff is part of the convention that it is providing resources to youth workers. Heck, I even purchase stuff here. But sometimes I feel like I am at the Golden Corral and that I am faced with this buffet of stuff… that I can just binge on. I also realize or assume that much, or part, of the profit gained here probably goes to helping fund the convention so people like me are able to listen and learn from the likes of Tony Campolo, Tony Jones and so many others and even have lunch with Mark Yaconelli, but every so often I get this odd taste in my mouth about the push to purchase. I know that some might say that I don’t have to be here, that it is my choice. And they are right. But it is like my desire to go eat at the Golden Corral, I don’t have to go there, but I just love being there, I love having all those options. And then while I am eating and enjoying that which I chose, I bite into something that is really hard and hurts. No, maybe it would be better to say that while I was eating what I chose, I bit my own tongue, or indigestion from my over consumption. Man that sucked. I didn’t like that. But that doesn’t stop me from going back. I don’t know, maybe I just need to find the balance for myself.

Session with Tony Jones

Session with Tony Jones this morning. “An identity Crisis: How New Research Is Challenging What We Think We Know about Adolescence.”

The interesting thing is that I was not just challenged about adolescence, Tony shared some stuff that challenged me regarding how I raise my own children. Actually, there were a couple of times that I really got to thinking about how I am raising my own children. Which I must obviously admit I think about often.

I continue to be amazed at how little I really know about this kind of stuff, like how the brain develops and how that affects the person we become, the things that can affect the way our brains develop.

Tony mentioned from the study “Hard wired to connect” that the whole idea of nature vs. nurture is not really valid any more. Because the nurture we receive or don’t receive becomes nature. I did not say that exactly as he did, but I believe that is the basic premise of it.

This study also confirms the need for community, not just community as in our youth group, but also specifically community as in a holistic faith community. This study specifically talks about the need for youth to be in authoritative communities.

One person asked during the session if, because of the fracture in families, youth ministries should replace the parental authoritative community. I think we that we should become a complementary authoritative community.

More on this later….

Friday, December 01, 2006

The rest of the day

I love being here. I love being around so many youth workers. I love that I got to come with these three guys, Kenny, Mike and Jeremy. The discussions that we are having are awesome. They are not about what new program, book, or thing we need for youth ministry. They are about Kingdom, the theology of lyrics in the music from the stage, war, homosexuality, how we are growing and being challenged. This convention is so different for me than my first. Which was in Sacramento, I think four years ago.

I remember thinking that to be a youth worker I had to be silly (sometimes stupid) and I had to act like a teenager. Man, I am in a totally different place now. I have come to learn that the best thing I can do is to simply be Dean. To be as real to who Christ created me to be as possible. I have come to realize that teens can see right through all the rest. Now, I am glad to say that some of the sillyness and even the stupidity has stuck with me, which I rather enjoy.

Campolo continues to spur me. That by the way is a really good thing.

I continue to have these themes that pop up in my life. Sabbath, simplicity, intentionality, guiding by living…..

Lunch at NYWC

Got to have lunch with Mark Yaconelli today. First I have to say that I felt very inadequate to be sitting at the table. Not necessarily because of Mark. It had to do with everyone at the table. Most of whom I know, one who is a very good friend of mine. I just remember sitting there thinking, what in the world am I doing in this discussion? I just felt like the best thing I could do was to sit and listen. So I did. Man, there was a lot for me to process out of the whole conversation. Mark was talking about a need for youth ministry to be dismantled. Speaking about the disconnect between teens and the church as a whole. I told him later that in hearing the words “dismantle youth ministry” I get really tense inside. Not sure why, it was just something that I sensed inside myself. Not really even sure what dismantling entails exactly. I just realize that those words made me nervous. Maybe it is because the first thing that I think about when I hear this word “dismantle” is my livelihood, my “job”. Which I think is a discredit to me.

Other stuff that came up:

-Church as a culture. Meaning our religion should mean more than “I live like everybody else, I just believe differently.” That our religion should effect, should change how we live, eat, act and dress.

-The idea that a sabbatical is a communal event, not just an individual event. This is because the sabbatical changes the individual; it allows growth, healing, rest, and inspiration for the individual. Which in turn is healthy for the community.

- The idea of youth pastors being a missionary to the local church. And using the “position” as a means to begin to really unite the adults to the youth and the youth to the adults. It was said that this might be most effective if it was subversive.

-Mark asked us a question that was asked of him at one time. “Will what you are doing today be beneficial to the church in 500 years?” What a question! It begins to put things into perspective. I don’t think we ever think of our ministries or our lives in light of that question. So, what will be beneficial to the church in 500 years. An all-nighter with the teens or being at home with my wife and three boys?


I had an interesting/frustrating experience at the Jedidiah booth today. I am going to be intentionally vague because, well... because I think it is best to and I still need to check myself about it. Maybe more later.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

On the way...a profound moment for me

This is a long post, but and awesome story.

My flight out of Boise, ID to Denver was delayed by two hours, so I was routed to Chicago instead. Placed on standby for a 1:15 flight to Charlotte and booked for a 3:45 flight. Got to Chicago, changed the time on my clock and went to catch my 1:15 if possible. It was not, the plane was pulling out as I walked up. Bummer, couple extra hours in Chicago.

Turns out though that I set my clock wrong. I went forward one hour to far. Did not realize it until 1:00pm and I was a good 5-10 minutes from the 1:15 gate. Looked at the departures... delayed until 1:27pm. Needless to say with a bit of hustle I made it onto the flight. Which I was excited about, sounded like a bad storm was coming into Chicago.

Sat next to a lady who later introduced herself to me as Lisa. When I first sat down I tried to make some small talk, because I find it unnerving to sit next to someone on a plane and act as if they are not there. It was not very effective. I could tell something was wrong and was pretty sure that she was crying, but not wanting to talk really. Anyway, after a failed attempt to chat I picked up my book and IPod and disappeared into my own little world. The only problem is that I was reading Mark Yaconelli, Contemplative Youth Ministry. He was talking about seeing and hearing. That when we slow down to hear God we will begin to really hear our youth as well. He talked about the importance of really being present to people and simply listen. Not giving answers or trying to figure out what to say next, but really being there.

So, I turned off my music, and put my book away. Guess what happened? Lisa asked me where I was ending my travels. I told her "Charlolett at the National Youth Workers Convention." What do you do she asked, a youth pastor I said. Pause in the conversation. "Where are you heading" I asked. "To Florida". Family? I asked. "Yes, my mom lives there. She is in the hospital. It looks like she won't make it through the night." I was stunned. I did not know what to say other then "I am sorry." Lisa began to share how her mom got sick all of a sudden. How Lisa had just found out that morning at 6am. I simply sat and listened. At some point I said, "I realize that most words are pretty empty right now, but I do understand some of what you are going through because I have lost my father." We talked about that, then about her children, then about how her dad is feeling guilty about not taking her mom to the hospital sooner. She let me pray with her and for her. She cried and cried some more. Lisa thanked me for listening because she had not had a chance to process through most of this. She even shared with me the last "deep" conversation that she had with her mom.

In short, Lisa shared her life with me, she shared a huge and major pain and a suffering with me, a complete stranger. I could only tell her that I was thankful because she allowed me to be a part of it. She took my email and said she would update me as to how her mom is doing.

Please pray for Lisa and her family.


I finally made it to the National Youth Workers Convention in Charlotte, NC. Had a couple set backs but I got here. Love the hotel, Westin. Am sharing the room with three other guys. I am sleeping on the floor. Brought my therma-rest. I was the first of four to get here. Got checked in and browsed the book store. Grabbed a couple of books, tried not to go crazy. I have enough books to read already. Could not help but feel overwhelmed at times.

Jeremy got in town about two hours after I did. We went to dinner at the Graduate Pub & Grill. It was good eatin. Then we checked out the trade show, I can't remember what they really call it here. Anyway, we roamed the booths, talked to folks and were asked many times why we were in Charlotte since we are from Oregon. We were asked that alot. I really mean alot. It became quite funny.

So, I decided to come to Charlotte because I really wanted to hear Tony Campolo and Ray Vander Laan. I do see some drawbacks to my choice. There are a ton of organizations that are specifically for this region. Duh! But it will still be sweet.

Funny moment, Jeremy and I were walking through the booths and were stopped at one of the mission organizations. The very kind young lady asked if we did construction mission trips. We both answered yes, generally with Amor Ministries. So she hands us each one of their brochures and begins to tell us about their organization. Then she tells us that they have "sites" all across the nation. I open the brochure and see that their sites don't go any further West then Texas and that it is a good distance west of the next one. I guess Oregon is not part of the nation. Oh Well. I caused me to chuckle.

Looking forward to an awesome week.

Monday, November 13, 2006


I may have said this before, but I am saddened by the fact that I have no real discipline in my life right now. I have found that in those moments when I do have discipline it actually can be found in most if not all areas of my life and when I don't have any then that lack of discipline can also be found in most if not all areas of my life. I am really getting tired of this lack of discipline and am having a hard time finding the discipline. I wonder if I am trying to start to big. I think it should begin in small steps at which point I will begin to see success. Maybe I will give that a try.

God Here and Now

Do we really live this way? Do we understand this to be true? That God is here and is now. Do we even understand the implications of that statement? Does that mean that the kingdom of heaven is here and now as well and if that is the case, what does that mean? Can we grasp the idea that we are living in the kingdom of heaven. Do I live as if God is here and now? I am afraid to say that I don't. What would my life, your life look like if I/we were really living as if we understood that God is here and now?

Sunday, October 22, 2006

dang it!

So I have not had any caffeine all week. Was doing great. Then on Sat. I was cutting firewood with a friend and when we were done he offered me a Pepsi. I was really thirsty and did not even think twice. As I took my first long drink it hit me, "This has caffeine!!" It amazes me how much caffeine is simply a part of our society and our daily lives.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Going strong

Still going strong without caffeine. No headache this morning, and I am pretty jazzed about that. There have been a couple of times that I almost broke down and had a coffee.

I have actually been surprised at how hard it is to say decaf instead. It seems that I think people will look down at me for kicking the habit. Coffee is such a social thing. This makes me wonder, how much of the rest of my life is controlled because I am concerned that others will think differently of me.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006


Seems that blogging is much more of a discipline then I expected. Seems that I don't have many things in my life that I am having success with discipline.

Have decided to give up caffine. I am now on day three. Have been having headaches, seems that I consumed more caffine then I let myself believe.

I did my first 24 hour fast, which covered two meals, breakfast and lunch. All I had was water. I was actually surprised that I made it. I really believe that it was only because I focused and prayed when I thought of food.

Also noticed that I have a bit more of an angry spirit then I want. Richard Foster said in Celebration of Discipline, that what is inside you will come out during a fast. He said that if we are angry then we quickly attribute that anger to the hunger, when in fact it is an angry spirit. Not sure I really like that but as I look at myself I begin to wonder if it is true indeed.

For some reason I am really feeling lead to a longer fast. Just need to get ready for it. 40 days. That is a really long time. The scary part is that I have had no disciplines in my life for some time now. Am trying to gradually get them in. Just need to make sure that they are for the right reason, drawing me closer and pointing me towards Christ.

Who knows, maybe I will become more disciplined about my blogging.

Sunday, September 03, 2006


Wow! It has been a really, really long time since I last posted. I am actually ashamed.

Anyway...summer was really busy for me. I am actually glad that summer is over. I have never in my life said that before, but I am glad. We took vacation this past week. Did not plan much other then taking the boys to Roaring Springs. While the water and the sun began to get a bit old for me, our boys were in heaven. We go back to work on Tuesday. I did not get as much relaxation as I wanted, but it has been good.

I have pretty much decided that my mini retreat will be in the mountains for two nights rather then a monostary. Much more secluded and much cheaper. I am really hoping to make this a quarterly event in my life. I just need to get Chris to see the importance of it.

Well, hopefully I am back for good here. Let's see where we go from here.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

A thought from someone.

A radical faith requires an abondonment that most of us are uncomfortable with because ultimately we desire security and stability in our circumstances and personal pursuits more than we desire security and stability in our Creator and passionate pursuit of God, himself.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

A thought

Jesus was a man of truth with nothing false about him. I wonder what that means for me?

Saturday, August 05, 2006

junior high camp

So I just got back from junior high camp. There were 262 campers there. Let me tell you that is a lot of junior highers. I continue to be surprised by how many junior highers are trying to "hook up." It continues to suprise me how young this begins.

I learned something about myself again this week. I am really afraid of failure. I was one of the directors for this camp and I was really terrified that it was going to be a bomb. Turned out it went really well, but I should work on this fear of failure thing.

Monday, July 03, 2006

interesting quote

‘In times of change
the learners
will inherit the earth,
while the knowers
will find themselves
beautifully equipped
to deal with a world
that no longer exists’
-Eric Hoffer

Friday, June 30, 2006


I have obviously not done very well at posting everyday. I have not done a very good job of reading lately either. I am tyring to become more disciplined about this. Right now I am reading Postmodern Youth Ministry by Tony Jones. I found it rather interesting that Tony's book is being sold with Doug Fields book Your First Two Years in Youth Ministry. Mainly because these two guys are totally different and I just never really pictured them being sold together.

Thursday, June 15, 2006


Summer is here and it is going full force. I have found that things really sneak up on me. Like senior high camp and a four day hike. Both of which are right around the corner. Wow!! Summer is going to be a blur.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

St. Theresa's Prayer

May today there be peace within. May you trust
God that you are exactly where you are meant to be. May you not forget
the infinite possibilities that are born of faith. May you use those
gifts that you have received, and pass on the love that has been given
to you.... May you be content knowing you are a child of God.... Let
this presence settle into your bones, and allow your soul the freedom
to sing, dance, praise and love. It is there for each and every one of

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Do you ever feel like stuff was just totally screwed up? Feel like things are just spinning way out of control? That is where I am at right now. Why are things going so fast? Why do I feel so lost? What in the world am I doing? How do I slow it down? How do I gain control? Do I gain control?

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Dodgeball update

I hate to admit it but we have been doing a less then stellar job at winning dodgeball. Our team "Rotor cups" is now 1-3.

Interesting Quote

Study after study in the field of youth development makes it clear that the single most important thing that can make a positive difference in the life of a young person is the presence of a caring adult. In spite of that, research shows that most young people don't have enough caring adults in their lives.

from: Contemplative Youth Ministry; Practicing the presence of Jesus

Saturday, May 27, 2006

District Assembly

We had our district assembly this week. While I enjoy most of it, there are certainly parts that I really don't care for. One of those is NOT listening to the general superintendent preach. Man, the dude can really preach. He certainly moved me and made me think quite a bit about how I interact with people that I just run across or that I see on a regular basis. He said that we have opportunities to share to love, but they are usually only 1-3 minutes long. It is true. Think about the contacts that you have on a daily basis. In those moments we are able to love as Christ, not cramming stuff down peoples throats, but loving and sharing when the time is right. Dude nailed it.

I found it funny that people noticed when I was not in the assembly. They even gave me a hard time about it. The funny thing is that most of the time when I was not in there, I was out talking to other youth pastors. I am thankful though that Jon never gave me a hard time about it. As a matter of fact, he was pretty cool about it. Guess he has been to enough assemblies to understand.

The whole time we were there, my thighs hurt. You will never guess from what. DODGEBALL!!!!! It comes again this Tuesday. I am confident that we will walk away victorious, or the other team will not walk away.... that was a joke.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

20 ways to be left alone at work

1. Grab your phone when it isn’t ringing and scream, “Stop taunting me like this!”
2. Show up doused in White Out. Tell everyone you’re just trying to cover your past mistakes.
3. Announce that tomorrow you will bring fruit salad for the entire office. Use durian.
4. Add, “Please see attachments,” to every email you send. Include JPGs of Captain Crunch or He-Man.
5. Learn to whistle through your nose. Deny doing it.
6. Announce in a worried tone that your pet Hobo spider is missing.
7. Ask Human Resources what their policy is on chronic bedwetters.
8. When asked what you did on vacation, reply sincerely, “Visiting the holy sites of Waco, Texas and Lincoln, Montana . And some golf.”
9. Scream at the copy machine, “You call this a reproduction? This is crap! Get your act together or you’re out of a job, mister.”
10. At your performance review, state that your five-year goals include interpretive dance lessons for the upper management.
11. Practice polytonal throat singing like the Tibetan monks do. Chant all meeting notices this way.
12. Show up early to lunch and bend all the spoons in the cafeteria. When coworkers arrive, hold a spoon up to your forehead and concentrate.
13. Ask how the fax machine works. When informed, look stunned and well up with tears. Walk away silently, shaking your head.
14. Ride a Galapagos Tortoise through the office.
15. Wear a black suit and stick hundreds of white threads all over it. Pretend not to notice. When it’s pointed out, remove only one and thank the person profusely for saving you from embarrassment.
16. Do the Time Warp at your desk at 17 minute intervals.
17. Keep a bowl of dog biscuits at your desk. Offer one to anyone who comes to your desk.
18. Demand equal rights for all legless employees. When it’s pointed out that you have legs, call them lowlife bigots.
19. When a coworker uncaps a marker, act extremely high. Hallucinate and scratch your forearms.
20. Put up a flyer announcing gender change operations to be performed in your cubicle all week. Discount for employees with promotional codes.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006


So every Tuesday afternoon, as soon as staff meeting is over, I have had an encounter. It has been in the same place for about the last month and a half or two months. Each time I have walked away from this encounter with my head held low, kind of shuffling my feet. Until today. Today I had a little skip in my step. No, that is not an adequate description. Today I was bouncing off the stinkn' walls.

See, I have been playing our associate pastor, Lennie, in a game of foosball every Tuesday. Now you have to understand, Lennie is a really, really good foosball player. We have played an average of 4 games each time. And I have lost every one. The closest I ever got was to eight points. He beat me that game.

TODAY WAS THE DAY!!! I beat Lennie 10 to 9. I was pretty excited. I have ruffled his feathers. Then he came back and beat me one more time. But you know what? I beat him. That is all I really care about. It will come again.
Sadly I don't think the new web browser is "gonig" to help me with my spelling.


DODGEBALL!!!!!!! It begins tonight. I am so excited.

Monday, May 22, 2006

I am really, really excited. I just changed my web browser to Fireox and this is really gonig to make things much easieir for me when it comes to my blog and linking stuff. YEAH!!!!


’m not quite coming up with the perfect ministry use for custom-printed toilet paper at this moment, but i’m sure there is one.

I feel official!!

I found out something really exciting today. It is official; I have an audience!! I cant’ tell you how excited I am about that. Guess I have to get “serious” about this thing now that I am “official”. O.K., probably not the whole "serious" thing, or the whole "official" thing. But I am still excited.

I am now in the last week of school for a while and I am equally excited about that!! To top it off, I am pretty sure that I am going to pass both of my classes. SWEET!!!!

What am I reading or getting ready to read as soon as this week is up?

Would really like to finish Blue Like Jazz and A New Kind of Christian. I have been reading some of the Devotional Classics published by Richard Foster.

Speaking of Richard Foster, I was pleased to see how he weighed in on the topic of homosexuality in his book, The Challenge of the Disciplined Life. Here is what he says,
“Because this issue has wounded so many people, the first word that needs to be spoken is one of compassion and
healing. Those who are clearly homosexual in their orientation often feel misunderstood, stereotyped, abused, and
rejected. Those who believe that homosexuality is a clear affront to biblical norms feel betrayed by denominations that
what to legislate homosexuality into church life.
There is a third group that has been hurt by the contemporary battle over homosexuality: I refer to those who agonize
over their own sexual identity, those who feel torn by conflicting sexual urges and wonder if perhaps they are latent
homosexuals. Perhaps this group suffers the most. They are cast into a sea of ambiguity because the Church has given
an uncertain sound. On their right, they hear shrill denunciations of homosexuality and, though they appreciate the
compassionate concern for the oppressed, they are astonished at the way the Bible is maneuvered to fit a more
accommodating posture.
All who are caught in the cultural and ecclesiastical chaos over homosexuality need our compassion and

Saturday, May 20, 2006


First, next week is my last week of school for a bit. I am really excited about being done for three months. Just seems that I don't have a live at times. Getting tired of that and of getting little sleep. This can't be healthy.

Next, have been having some really good theological discussions with a couple of friends. We have decided to make it a bit more formal and create a group of about six where we can all sit down together and have these talks as a group instead of in such little pockets. Man, this could be dangerous.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

what's up with that

Thoughts of my day. First, my thumb really hurts. Never knew how much I needed and used my thumb until I smashed it between two landscaping bricks. Man does that sucker hurt.

Vacation last week was really good for me. Just being out in the yard all by myself building the boys playstructure. It was the solitude that I had been longing for. It was very healthy for me. I have to say this is the first time that I have ever just put everything work related down and not gone back to it. It was great.

Frustrated with youth group. Not sure what is going on there. Have been feeling like things are a bit hollow. That is the absolute last thing that I want of our youth ministry. I so want the students and the staff to grow in their relationship with Christ. My prayer is that God will use me and show me how to encourage that journey in each of the students and staff.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006


I get frustrated when I am rewarded for my procrastination. Not that people do this intentionally, but it seems to happen often. I put things off until the very last minute and do a poor job of completing it, knowing that I am going to bomb as a result of it. Then it comes around to the evaluation of whatever project it was and I get rewarded. Either with a good grade or good report or good result. How does a person learn that procrastination is a bad thing like this? While I am pleased that I am getting good grades, I know the work that went into it was below par. C.S. Lewis was saying in one of his books that procrastination is simply laziness, made me feel real good. But I know in my heart that it is true. I really don't want to be lazy; I would really like to do my work to the best of my ability. Guess that is why I must continue to discipline myself in this area.

Sunday, April 23, 2006


Back at it again, school. Let me tell you, I am really not that excited about it right now. I am having a really hard time getting back into the grove of getting my homework done, getting my reading done. Actually, it out right sucks. But that is ok, this will only last for five more weeks. Then I take a break again, although, as hard as it has been for me to get into the grove this time I am beginning to wonder if these breaks are the best thing for me. Guess we will wait and see.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006


Why is it that so many people have such a negative view of Christians? Why is it that so many of us are so afraid to ask questions or to think for ourselves? I have to admit, that I have been and am sometimes that very person who is afraid to ask and think, but I am learning more and more each day that if I truly want to live in this relationship with Christ that I must ask questions and that I must think for myself. Thus it becomes my relationship rather then someone elses. The last thing that I ever want to do is to be the cause of someone saying, "look there is another one of those dumb Christians, that guy is just a dumb sheep, following whoever happens to be standing in front of him."

Monday, April 17, 2006

Holy Blood, Holy Grail

While I have not read this book I have had a couple of conversations about it. Mostly just listening to one particular gentleman about his reading of the book and his thoughts on it. He explained that there is a good possibility that it was in fact not Jesus that died on the cross. That Jesus may not have performed the miracles that we read in the Bible, that Jesus lived married and had children. After very little research on my part, I found that these are some of the central themes in Holy Blood, Holy Grail. My friend goes on to tell me that he believes that even without the death or the miracles, what we are left with is still a good thing. That Christianity is still good without Christ.

The problem is that without the divinity of Christ, without his miracles, without his death on the cross and his resurrection all we are left with is a moral code. A moral code that we are not capable to even living up to. C.S. Lewis says that when we live this way, trying to "be good" we will simply get frustrated because we will never be able to meet all the demands made by this moral code. We will either just give up or keep trying and become angrier and angrier. The biggest problem is that this moral code will not save us. In the end we would simply die. Without Christ's death and resurrection we have no way of being saved, of being healed, of anything.

Ramblings of some guy named Dean

So it begins. Trying to become much more consistant about all this jounal/blog stuff. Not sure what I will do with all of it but I feel compelled to write and write and write. Kind of freaks me out. Maybe this will be where I put my tough questoins and those dizzing thoughts that I often have about my Journey with Christ. Maybe it will just be the ramblings of some guy named Dean. Well, here it goes.

Monday, April 10, 2006


My friend killed somebody. Not often that a person gets to say that, and to be honest, I don't really enjoy saying it myself. Sadly, it is true. A friend of my killed one of his co-workers last week. Now he is in jail and his wife and two beautiful children are at home without a husband or a father. I can only imagine what caused him to go to such an extreme. I got to talk with him last week. I continue to be struck by what he did. I often wonder if it has anything to do with where his identity lies. He worked for the same employer for fourteen years. Did he define himself by what he did for a living? How many of us do that as well? Next, it seems that he took steps to "take control" of his life. In taking control, he actually lost all control. I guess my point is that my identity does not lie in what I do for a living, or even in the things I do. My identity lies in Christ, and that cannot be taken away from me. No matter how bad things get, no matter how mean people are, no matter any of it... my identity cannot be threatened nor taken from me. Next, I am reminded of Matthew 16:25. Whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it." I believe that this is one of those moments that Jesus was talking about. My friend tried to save his life and in fact lost it entirely. He has lost his wife, children, job.... and so much more. My pray is that in the midst of it he will find his life in Christ and as such find his identity in Christ as well.

Monday, March 20, 2006


Can't believe that it is already here. Will be leaving for Mexico next Saturday (March 25). Have done this trip before, Baja, Mexico with Amor Ministries. But last time was as a sponser not the leader. This is the first time I have ever had to organize something like this from start to finish. Budget, route, food plans, hotels, stops for the night, sponsers, fundraising, insurance, vehicles.... I have learned much and made several mistakes. Glad to say that I did not wait until the last minute for all of the details. Just a couple. Praying for a safe trip and that each one going will be changed by what they see and do.