See You in 2009

Okay, so this blog has been really slow lately.  I’ll try to do better when 2009 rolls in.  In the meantime, I’m taking a break for the holidays.

Hope you all have a merry Christmas!!!!

Published in: on December 24, 2008 at 12:31 pm  Comments (2)  

Big D

Tonight is the big game between the Dallas Cowboys and the Baltimore Ravens.  It’s an important game for both squads.  I like both teams, but of course I hope the Cowboys emerge victorious.

On Wednesday I was wearing my Tony Romo jersey and the kids at the preschool kept asking me why I was wearing a “football shirt.”  Naturally, this opened up numerous opportunities to indoctrinate them into the world of Dallas Cowboys fandom.

It backfired once, though.  I was explaining to one little guy who recently turned four that the Cowboys are the best team.  Knowing that his whole family are huge Ravens fans, I added, “In fact, the Cowboys are going to beat the Ravens this Saturday.”

“No they’re not,” he said as he shook his head.

“Why do you say that?”  I asked.

He answered, “Because the Ravens defense is too tough.”

It’s hard trying to argue with a four-year-old who knows what he’s talking about.

Published in: on December 20, 2008 at 2:28 pm  Leave a Comment  

Inauguration Day: On A Positive Note

Now this is interesting!

Published in: on December 18, 2008 at 9:46 am  Leave a Comment  

Live in Concert!

It was 22 years ago today that my dad took me to my first rock concert.  We saw Eddie Money.  Ahh, the memories.

Published in: on December 18, 2008 at 9:42 am  Comments (2)  

Christmas KidsFest 2008

On Saturday at CrossWay we had our second annual Christmas KidsFest.  It was awesome!  It may have been smaller than last year, but everyone had a great time and I’ve heard lots of positive feedback from it.

The event started at 11:00 and ran until 2:00.  The kids started off singing songs and learning the Christmas story.  Then they rotated to a couple stations where they played games and made crafts.  After two stations we had lunch, then two more stations before pickup time.

It was so much fun!  My job was to be a group leader.  I had four kids in my group, all recent alumni of the Training Station Preschool.  They are such a trip!  I’m already looking forward to doing this again next year.  Fortunately we’ll have another one coming up at Easter!

Published in: on December 15, 2008 at 12:14 pm  Leave a Comment  

Are You Ready for Christmas?

Yesterday at CrossWay was the third week in our Christmas series, “Are You Ready for Christmas?”  We’ve been in the first chapter of Luke’s Gospel, which contains several rich stories leading up to the first Christmas 20 centuries ago.

Every year at this time we have things we do to prepare for Christmas.  We go around asking each other: “Are you ready for Christmas?”  Usually what we mean by that is: Have you finished your shopping? Have you wrapped all the kids’ presents?  Have you sent out your Christmas cards? Have you got the lights up? Have you decorated the Christmas tree?

These things are all nice and can be meaningful ways to celebrate this special holiday, but there are other things to do to help us really prepare for the celebration of the birth of  Jesus Christ.  That’s what we’re talking about in this series.

The first week we looked at the circumstances surrounding the birth of John the Baptist, as told in Luke 1:5-25, 57-80.  He was uniquely created and called by God to blaze a path for the coming Christ, to get ready a people prepared for His arrival.  In the same way, God can use us today to prepare people’s hearts for the coming of Jesus.

The second week we read the story of Mary, Jesus’ mom, and how she responded with trust, submission, and obedience when God told her through the angel Gabriel that she would give birth to a son even while she was a virgin.  You can read about it in Luke 1:26-38.  We used that as a launching pad to talk about how we can get ready for Christmas by surrendering our plans and agendas to God.

Yesterday we read the story of Mary’s visit to Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptist, while they were pregnant with Jesus and John.  This account appears in Luke 1:39-45.  They were all overflowing with joy–even the unborn John!  At Christmas we sing “Joy to the World,” and God really has given us joy by giving us Jesus.  No matter what is going on around us, we can experience true and lasting joy when we believe, like Mary and Elizabeth, that God really does keep all His promises to us.

Next week we’ll conclude the first chapter of Luke by checking out the song Mary sang as she and Elizabeth celebrated together.  Then we’ll wrap up the series on Christmas Eve by taking a close look at a passage you might not expect.

Published in: on December 15, 2008 at 5:37 am  Leave a Comment  

My New Favorite Paragraph

I have a new favorite paragraph.

It’s from page 115 of Gilead by Marilynne Robinson.  The narrator is an old dying country preacher writing about dancing the waltz alone in his study:

“I plan to do all my waltzing here in the study.  I have thought I might have a book ready at hand to clutch if I began to experience unusual pain, so that it would have an especial recommendation from being found in my hands.  That seemed theatrical, on consideration, and it might have the perverse effect of burdening the book with unpleasant associations.  The ones I considered, by the way, were Donne and Herbert and Barth’s Epistle to the Romans and Volume II of Calvin’s Institutes.  Which is by no means to slight Volume I.”

Now that’s rich.  What an amazing writing gift.  And what a lovable character!

Published in: on December 13, 2008 at 12:09 am  Leave a Comment  

Bean and Bailey Kings

For your viewing pleasure: Some talented entertainers (who graduated from the same college as Carolyn).  Enjoy!

Published in: on December 11, 2008 at 12:42 am  Comments (2)  

Top 10 Cool Things I Did Last Week

Here’s the official list of the Top 10 Cool Things I Did Last Week:

(10) Continued reading a book I borrowed from my dad.  It’s called Gilead and is written by Marilynne Robinson.

(9) Went to La Tolteca in Salisbury for lunch with Carolyn and her family.

(8) Downloaded the Dropkick Murphys version of “Amazing Grace.”

(7) Ate a delicious dinner that my mother-in-law, Linda, made for us.  Spaghetti with meatballs.

(6) Downloaded the Aaron Neville edition of “Amazing Grace.”  A close honorable mention vying for this spot: Downloading an abridged audio version of Charles Spurgeon’s Morning & Evening devotions.

(5) Attended a Bible study about the book of Ruth, led by my father-in-law, Steve.

(4) Ate a pound’s worth of turkey burgers and about a half gallon of cheese dip.  That’s what happens when Carolyn goes out of town for a conference.

(3) Downloaded the Twisted Sister version of “O Come All Ye Faithful.”  (Yeah, you read that right.  Search iTunes if you don’t believe me.)

(2) Went on a field trip with Carolyn’s kindergarten class.  We saw The Three Billy Goats Gruff at the local high school.

(1) Listened to our baby’s heartbeat.  Carolyn had her first OB/GYN appointment on Thursday.  Absolutely beyond words.

Published in: on December 7, 2008 at 11:47 pm  Comments (2)