Thursday, February 12, 2009

if it's cold she will keep them on

hawaii is coming up and although i have not yet left nor have i ever been to hawaii it prompted me to think of the best vacation spots. now the variables are contingent on friends and activities. i am a guy who is fine with not getting up at 6am to go on a cave tour in the jungle which takes 4 hours to get there. i am fine with laying in bed for hours...not attending to a kid. i think someone has to come out and say it, and i am fine with admitting that sometimes i do NOT want my kid around, i love him and always will but there are moments i want him in the other room. i am the kinda guy who is fine with not getting up early and then when i am up doing absolutely nothing all day long. and when i say absolutely nothing of course i don't mean eating or drinking. 

1. honeymoon. liz and i went to mazatlan, mexico. besides the 23 years of sexual frustration building up to finally being let out, this trip was amazing. to me the beach destinations make the best vacations and as a good friend told me, "don't go anywhere cold on your honeymoon, cause you want her to WANT to take off her clothes." obviously if it's cold she will keep most of them on, and liz gets cold very easily. so we went to the closest spot we could to the equator without it being too expensive. ok anyways, before i go in detail about that trip lets move on. 

2. bachelor party. radiant* had a tour happening and this was incorporated into my bachelor my bachelor party was incorporated into this tour, either way it was awesome. the trip started in oklahoma city ending up in a tube in the river in san marcos somewhere. singing a songs on stage, the traveling, the boy humor, and the non-stop digestion of food.

3. belgium. the trip i took with nathan and jon is number three on my vacations. we met up with allyster, landon, and danny lankenau later on. this group was able to minister to youth and youth pastors. we played music which was a dream of mine to do overseas and built relationships that will later help us realize what god is calling us to. the bread, the coffee and the castles were amazing over there.

4. alaska. my first time up to liz's homeland was truly worth the top five. snow mobiles, 4 wheelers on frozen lakes, and the cold, cold, cold weather was great to experience. i still to this point haven't seen a bear but i am holding out hope that one day i will see one...oh and the northern lights too.

5. funslingers. when i worked for the mavericks around 2000-01 we were sent annually to a "spring training" in september. this trip was huge. the 2000 year was amazing because it was basically all of my close friends who went. jon nickerson, daniel hopkins, josh briscoe, niles holsinger, daryl goldsmith we all would be sent to cocoa beach, florida to learn how to do certain things involving crowd entertainment. the company we worked for was sports magic and they had little crowd entertainment squads throughout the u.s. mainly basketball but they branched out to work with nascar, baseball, and hockey. well there were lots of teams that would show up to this training and they could not hold a candle to the dallas squad. we owned the joint. we basically could get away with murder. oddly enough the next year sept. 2001 we were scheduled to fly out of orlando at 11am on september 11th. well...if you have already forgotten, this was the same tragic day that terrorists flew planes into the world trade centers in new york. this actually turned into a great recovering trip. we drove from orlando to dallas after three days of hanging out at hotels, margaritaville, and islands of adventure. 

of course there are so many trips i could talk about but those are the top five. i might make some mention of:

the cruise - cozumel was worth it all
october 08 belgium - children's asylum of carlsbourg
ukraine - "ukrainski borsch"
colorado with the heepsters - stagg chili nightmare
mexico spring break - orange t-shirt mania
senior trip to mexico - otherwise known as guatemala city
denmark/finland - "thank you for liberating our country" - old iraqi man
exeter - grandma's drink lots of beer 
justin's bachelor party - biker weekend in austin makes the whole difference
dan's bachelor party - come on lucky number 10

Friday, February 6, 2009

why do we do this?

when i read many times i find that i want to identify with the hero's i am currently reading. this is very true in the moments i'm in the word of god. i read about the greats of the stories of old and how courageous, how wonderful, how confident or how awesome their stories were. my fantasy comes to an end on most occasions when i see the biblical greats because of their enormous and awesome achievements and the final result that god had orchestrated. i casually dismiss myself and my ability to render the fruit of that magnitude. am i alone? i don't think so. so many of the heroics accomplishments overshadow in great length the shortcomings of the individual; or the everyday struggles that kept the hero on the road to pursue greatness. the biblical accounts and the interpretations are no different than our present day fanatical aspirations. we see the hero, we see what he has done, we see his accomplishments both on his own and the motivation for others in a group effort, and are in awe of the possibilities of us ever reaching that status. this is the same kind of glamorization or praise we give to celebrities. we reinforce this with the thought of, "i could never be like him/her." why do we do this? well, i think we base our idea of a hero on the wrong side of the scale. we hail a heros as those with no problems, or no issues. this is simply unfair to all those who are not hero's but wish to be. there is never a promise to any individual that life is getting easier. i, like many, some of whom probably have it worse than me, have experienced this reality. we forget that those little childhood stories overlook the serious issues of those characters who had daily struggles with their imperfections. it's like hearing your whole life that christopher columbus was this great man of many great accomplishments. you read about it in all the elementary history books and then are exposed to the fact, later on in life, that this man was a hero only in his departure to find a new world never explored before by the modern man. i have read some pretty graphic and real accounts from his own journals of his nature which would categorize him as everything but a great hero. so my point is remembering that shortcomings are evident in every individual who have been enveloped in the flesh. except one, of course. what i believe to be of heroic nature is one who has lived as though he can not make it one more day without the living god. matthew 5 and the beatitudes are the description of a hero. it's not rags to riches, its not what i can do to achieve status, it's not what will make my name great that prospers that man. it's the one who remains poor in spirit, one who mourns because of his grief, one who is gentle or humble, one who hungers and thirsts for righteousness, one who is merciful, one who is pure in heart, one who is a peacemaker, one who has been persecuted for righteousness, one who is insulted and falsely accused for the sake of jesus' name. look those words up that are in bold from this text in a study of the new testament greek you will find a very clear definition of what jesus is stating as how god sees a hero. the old testament is full of people who are great hero's of the faith. but look closer and you will find in their life they struggled with if not the same struggles we encounter on a daily basis, more than what we encounter. they are heros because they continued to run back to their maker and state that they are incapable on their own without him. we are broken and all of creation knows this.