Thursday, September 28, 2006
I'm for the most part pretty selfish. Think about it. Most of what we do in life is for us. Even in ministry the traps of self exaltation are there. I'm in the Army and the Army loves awards. Its good to recognize people for their accomplishments. Its easy to come to the table of life and ask "What is in it for me?" Its easy to do this with God too. My buddy Dan and I talk often about God, His work in our lives and the real freedom and grace that we have found. I mean real freedom! And in freedom, being set free to really live there is no room for self centeredness. They are just not compatible. Its like using metric wrenches with standard hardware, pointless. Yeah you can look like you are accomplishing things and you may even tighten a bolt now and then, but eventually something will strip out. I began to think of this the other night while I was praying. I was asking God for guidance. I'm faced with the possibility of an overseas deployment. I need help in making this decision. Its a big one. So I come to God, "Lord what do I do?" Then my prayers changed to, "Lord are You there?". Then I became aware of His presence. in that moment when I sensed God was really there, I stopped caring about my decisions, even my own life. I can literally say that I did not want to be anywhere else in any other time than just being with Jesus on my couch. Now how out there is that? Well, its not, it should be normal and it should be every day. What does this world offer that can even come close to total contentment? Yeah, its rhetorical I know. Nothing! The world offers nothing like that! To know and be known by God, to know His kindness, His fierce love for us, His unwavering pursuit in spite of ourselves is more than enough for me! The rest comes out in the wash!
Wednesday, September 27, 2006
Well its drawing near to the big race day! The Army 10 miler is fast approaching. The training needs to wind down and the carb loading needs to begin. In case you didn't know it the Army 10 miler is, I believe, the world's largest 10 mile running race. This year over 24,000 people will participate in our Nation's capital. The run begins at the Pentagon and winds its way through all the monuments and then back to the Pentagon. It should be quite a scene. I hope you all will remember that we are also running to raise awareness and funding for Hopegivers international. They, among other things, love, feed and care for orphaned children in India. If you'd like to help take care of these children, just click here to find out more about their ministry. If you decide to give, just let them know you found out about them through THE ARMY 10 MILER.
Monday, September 25, 2006
I've been thinking a lot lately about hearing from God. I've been a Christian for 14 years now. I like to think I have grown spiritually. I have been to seminary, studied long hours in Greek and Hebrew. I've written massive 35 and 40 page papers on theology. According to the modern mind in spiritual thought, this is how we come to hear God, through diligent study of propositions. Don't get me wrong I am grateful for my education. I would not be where I am had it not been for those long hours of preparation. There are times however where I wonder if that is all there is. I pray. I read the bible. But the times of my life where I was most alive, was when I absolutely knew God was present and I could hear His voice from within. You see theology is good, but relationship with the God of theology is the most crucial element of my existence. It is the daily leaning and learning on and from a God who has and does desire me and you to walk closely with Him that matters. God's word points us to this type of relationship. It is not only propositional, true, but real and tangible. To know and hear from God, even if its just His voice saying, "You are my servant, I will not reject you" that is enough for me today. May you also hear from Him today as you battle for your life!
Sunday, September 24, 2006
Wow what a great day we had here at FT Jackson. It was bitter sweet though. The mission that I am on here will be changing g soon and my Battalion is folding colors and going home in a few weeks. Over the last year we have been honored to have a local band called Kenny Got Saved leading our music twice a month. Jared, Brian, Jeff and Dean have been a blessing to us. They provide relevant worship for this generation. They also write songs from their heart. As they have partnered with us over the last year over 400 soldiers have received Christ as their savior. Today was no different with 10 more coming forward, to include one young lady who had never been to church in her life. Today however was the last time they will be with us due to the end of our mission and other commitments to family and ministry that they have. But my affiliation with them has not ended. We are praying about doing some ministry together where they bring their talents for music I would speak at events as they come along. Would you please pray with us as we seek God for His direction. I've included a picture of them and you can access their web-site by clicking on the link in this article. If you are interested in having us come to your event please contact me and we'll be glad to set something up. So to all the guys in the band and their families, thank you so much for being a blessing to us. We are grateful to have served with you! And I look forward to many more opportunities in the future!
Friday, September 22, 2006
If you've ever ridden on a helicopter, loud is the optimal word. Its also a helicopter for heavens sake! My buddy Mitch who will be running side by side with me at the Army 10 miler did something I find almost impossible. He fell asleep after about 6 minutes of flying! He's an old 11B infantry Master SGT. I guess those guys can sleep anywhere. Here's a nice picture of him crashed out at 8000ft! Nice one Mitch! By the way if you want to subscribe to my blog you can do so by clicking one of the cool "chicklets" in the columne to the right. Then as soon as I update with cool and interesting stories, you'll know immediately. How awesome is that?
Thursday, September 21, 2006
Some days in the Army are very cool. Today was one. One of my buddies here, DS Wolf made friends with some guys from the SC National Guard aviation unit. Today we hooked up with them and went on a Blackhawk ride! We flew to Savannah, then to Charleston. Landed at the airfield there, had dinner at Cracker Barrel and the flew home. It was a blast. It was my first time in a helicopter and I'll never forget it. The pilot told me it puts out 3900 HP! That is amazing. We flew up the coast of SC along the shore at about 200 ft. The pilot had a little fun with us too. All of a sudden we'd bank hard right. It feels like the floor is gone. Then he'd shoot straight up and then drop back down and for brief moment we were at 0 gravity. WOW! The guys were great, very professional and loads of fun at dinner. I'd like to thank Shawn, Tripp and Scott the all knowing crew chief for a wonderful time! During the ride I thought about how the ride itself was kind of a metaphor. I had no idea where we were going specifically. I knew our final destination. I also didn't know when the ride was going to get exciting. The pilot was in complete control of all that. But, how thrilling it was just to be included in their mission. I put my total trust in those guys at the controls. They all just got back from the "sandbox". They all have over 30 years combined experience at the stick. I knew I could trust that they would take care of us. I knew they were good at their jobs. I got thinking that life with God is a lot like that. I know my final destination with God. But I have no idea when He'll bank hard left, or shoot straight up and send me to 0 gravity and make life "exciting". Sometimes with God we just have to crank down on our 4 point harness system and hang on. The one thing I know is that God, my pilot is good. He's invited me into his mission. I don't always know what he is up to, but I know He's good and just like the helicopter mission there is nowhere I'd rather be than right in the jump seat following my King! Enjoy the pictures!
Sunday, September 10, 2006
I may have gone off the deep end. When I was a younger man, I loved motorcycles. In 1984 I bought a Honda 700 Interceptor. I spent hours riding that thing all over North Carolina. Drove it too fast, wrecked it a couple of times and vowed never to get one again. I don’t know what it is about these two wheeled things that intrigue the male species so much. It may be the freedom of not being surrounded by sound proof windows. It may be the wind rushing past you. Its hard to put your finger on. But the truth is there just something cool about riding a bike. Yeah they can be dangerous and I’ve had my share of heartache with them. A good friend of mine was killed earlier this year on one. But still my heart leans towards two wheels. So yesterday I went over the edge and for the first time in 18 years I own a motorcycle again. Actually I pick it up on Monday. A lot of guys go for the big throaty Harley cruisers and some like the blazing speed of a rice rocket. I went a different road, not because those other bikes aren’t good, they are. They are just not what I was looking for. I found a BMW F650 GS. In all reality I’ve been looking for one for years, but it was never the right time. I found a 2005 model this week and with some pleading with my wife, who is very nervous about this, we came to an agreement. So I did the deal. The bike is an enduro, good for the street and good for the trail. I have found myself lost in thought, cruising the roads in the mountains near my home in NC in my mind. I want to take Tammy for long rides in the country. I have found in the 18 months that I have been stationed away from her and the kids that I have lost my hobbies. I used to fish all the time, can’t do much fly fishing here. My fertile hunting lands are back home. Many times I am restless in thought. I am so busy with lives of others that I have in a way neglected my own. So I’m reclaiming a bit of ground and going to live a little. I do believe that God has called us to live, really live and as one man put there is nothing more glorifying to God that a man fully alive. I’ve included a picture of my new ride for you to look at. See you on the twisties! If you are interested in BMW motorcycles check out their web site at http://www.bmwmotorcycles.com/
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