Thursday, September 27, 2007


Last night at my work in the group home, there had been some kids who had extremely bad days/weeks. When I arrived for my 3-11 shift the kids were on their version of lockdown. They call it "room reflection." They are only allowed out of their rooms for meals and school. They had been pretty difficult to deal with over the weekend (or so I hear). There is one certain child about 10 who really pushes the buttons of the staff. I have seen him in his glory and he is pretty difficult. Yesterday he was having one of his bad days. He was cussing, running around, and not doing what he was told. Driving everyone nuts. So I was watching the hallway to make sure the kids were not doing anything that would hurt themselves and others. And this one certain kid that was acting so bad started singing softly to himself. I couldn't tell what he was singing at first but then I realized he was singing amazing grace. I don't think anyone else heard it, but it took me aback and put this kids life into perspective. Here he is being an absolute pain in the butt but yet there is something there that I can relate to in my relationship with God.
Lets just assume for a second that all of us have guardian angels. Can you imagine the reports they would give to God each day on our attitude or our actions? God might turn to them and smile and say I know they are a pain in the butt, they do dumb things but they still are my kid. I almost started crying when I heard this kid singing amazing grace. He had no idea the theological implications for singing this song, but grace is for him even though he drives me more crazy than certain middle schoolers at real life.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Consumer fly wheel

This past weekend I have been reading "Serve God Save the planet" by J. Sleeth. If you are in the mood to be convicted about your lifestyle than read it, if not stay far away.
How did my life style and thinking on what was appriopriate consumerism thinking evolve? In comparing myself to the American dream I would say we are ok. Not to much of an extravagent lifestyle, no credit card debt. Nothing that gives a huge warning sign. Yet subtly there are so many ways that my lifestyle can improve to help both my consumerism and the enviorment.
There were some aspects of Sleeth's book that got me thinking. One was if every household in America changed their top five most used light bulbs to compact flourescent lightbulbs the country could take twenty one coal fired power plants off line tomorrow. This would keep one trillon pounds of posionous gases and soot out of the air we breath. Another thought from the book was how much stuff in my house do I have or even need? His presuppisition is that the reasons Americans have such big houses is to store unneeded stuff. Bigger houses=More energy spent= More pollution in the air= more cancer and other air breathing diseases.
I haven't thought much about enviormental issues, but I am beggining to realize that the way I treat consumerism, the enviorment, and what kind of world I want to leave to my kids and grandkids is a direct result of my faith. It starts with consumerism, the more we want the more unhealthy we become.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Bringing heaven to earth

It is so easy for me to lose focus. Plans, ideas, and days start off with great intentions and then all of sudden I am sidetracked and worrying about something totally unimportant.
Update on my current youth for christ situation. Fundraising has not went well, if I was to try and live on what I have brought in I would be making pennies an hour. So I have been discouraged by that and not from people, because ultimately if this is what I am suppose to do God is going to provide. Knowing that this was going to be a long process I am working at a group home with troubled kids. The schedule right now is 3-11 tuesday-saturday. It is a lot tougher schedule than I originally thought. With Kyle in school this morning is the first time I saw him since monday. So I haven't been in the greatest of moods.
So with all that said my current frame of mind has sucked to say the least. I went to a meeting yesterday and I was in an awful mood. It was with one of my former co workers at Real Life. After sitting there for an hour I began to remember and realize why I am where am. It wasn't negative thoughts it was remembering the idealism of "bringing heaven to earth." How and where I make money is irrevalent (unless of course it is immoral or illegal). The point is that if I am going to follow Jesus and He is my role model than I need to be like Him. One of the most important aspects of His life was healing broken people and inspiring people not to live for themselves.
Although I have seen people physically healed, I have seen so many more people who are broken on the inside. Seeing a teenager who has special needs and doesn't know who his parents are because they dropped him off when he was a baby, that is someone who needs healing. He needs to have heaven brought to earth for him.
It is easy to get sidetracked in the Christian faith. We can get so caught up in going to classes, church services, and missing out on having the opportunity to be able to bring heaven to broken people.
Many times I get so caught up in details I miss the big picture.

Monday, September 3, 2007

A weekend of camping gone bad

Labor day weekend is the annual family camping trip to Plymouth's Yogi Bear camp ground, it is a celebration of Kyle's and my sister in laws birthday. Camping isn't bad once a year, it is always interesting meeting people at camp grounds. Like the guy who was talking to me and this other sports fan. He was concerned about the Bears new tight end who pulled his ACLU.
Camping was going as well as camping goes until this morning. The pop up camper was put away and we had hooked up the car, gathered all the kids and other camping junk into the car when I noticed Kyle had bug bites all over him. His face began swelling as we drove down the road. Our plan was to stop at the nearest store and get benadryl. A few miles later Kyle tried to ask for a drink, his voice sounded weird so Jill turned around and realized he was having an allergic reaction and his throat was swelling. My father in law was following us and we stopped and Jill and Kyle jumped into their car to rush him to the hospital. His throat kept swelling shut and they had to call 911 and an ambulance had to meet them on the road. They reached the ambulance before he went unconsious but was in pretty bad shape. He recived an epi shot, benadryl, and a steriod to fight off the allergic reaction. He was in the hospital in the large town of Knox for a couple of hours and was released.
I hate the feeling of not having control when it comes to my kids. This has been about the third time already in Kyle's life where he has had "life threatening" type situation come up. I feel like an emotional wreck now. It definately puts life in perspective when these type of situations come up. As I was driving behind Jill thinking about how I always complain about camping I realize how little that matters when it comes to life or death with my kids.
It is also through these moments that having a faith in something much bigger than myself also helps quite a bit. (understatement). I am still trying to learn about not having control in these situations but man it is hard and I have very little fingernails.(I have chewed them off).