Wednesday, April 18, 2007


Tonight, I'll be kicking off a new series for the youth called "Face the Music: Finding God in Your iPod"

It's a series that Granger Community Church did last year and the first week is entitled: iSearch.

The question is asked, "How much certainty does one need to have in order for his/her prayers to be effective?" Do you need to be a confident faith olympian? The answer may suprise you.

Yes, there are examples in the Bible where people received miracles as a result of their astonishing faith. Faith like the Roman Centurion who told Jesus there was no need for him to actually come to the house to heal his servant but rather to just say the word so he would be healed. This level of faith even astonished Jesus.

But what about when we're not so certain? What does God do with the doubters/questioners/etc. Where does God set the bar when it comes to our sense of certainty in praying to Him?

Bottom line: God desires authenticity over certainty. God, who judges our hearts and already knows what really dwells within, would rather we operate in authenticity than some fake conjured up level of certainty.

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Thursday, April 12, 2007

Dust off the ole blog...





Is anybody there?



Oh...hey! Yeah..I'm still alive. No, I didn't OD on the Christmas candy. I just sort of lost time and motivation to post anything here on the blog. Maybe I need to update or make a change.

Because...(and those of you who know me in real life will know I've been on this kick lately)

Change precedes Progress. But Challenge precedes Change.

Thank you Andy Stanley.

Monday, December 18, 2006

The ultimate Christmas candy.

Oh, I'm sure there will be those naysayers who claim the candy cane or choclate covered cherry as the ultimate, but pshhhhhhh.

I present to you, the all-time best Christmas candy...the Christmas Nougat.

These little suckers are incredible. And yes, Brachs® calls them Christmas Nougats. Way to go Brachs®. So if you see these little delicacies in the local grocery store, pick up a pound or two.

Not sure if they are easy on the braces...probably not.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Black Friday

For those who know me, getting up at 0-dark-thirty on the busiest shopping day of the year is not something I would normally do. But this year I did it, and I'm kind of glad I did. It was an eye opener.

So why did I participate in Black Friday? Here is my story:

It all began on a cold day in February, 1975. Ok ok...I'll skip a little.

Really, it all began with an email from Heather about BF deals at different stores. Apparently, there are whole websites dedicated to nothing more than listing all of the BF deals at various stores so that a savvy BF participant can plan, implement, and execute the most efficient attack for the day.

I looked at the deals at Wal-Mizzle <---hahaha and noticed they had a decent deal on 1GB SD memory cards. So I planned to get up and get one. The night before was a late one for me. I stayed up until about 1:30 congregating with strangers across the planet battling the evil forces of the galactic empire. Yes, it is juvenile, but when you are juvenile, your parents don't let you stay up that late, hence the best time to execute juvenile behavior is actually when you're an adult....cause then you get to do what you want to do. But I digress.

I slipped* into bed and as I did so, I checked to make sure the alarm was set for 6:00 am. It was, but apparently that isn't good enough for BF. Heth, who was awoken by the .0001 micro decibel sound of air molecules being disrupted by the movement of cotton fibers on my pajamas as I walked into the bedroom (ie, light sleeper), indicated that I may actually want to get to the W-Mizzle at 5:00 am because that's when the sales start. 5:00? So I have to set the alarm for 4:30? Bleh. But hey, this was 1GB SD memory we're talking about. And it's not a Christmas gift...this was for the greater good of PDA toting, mp3 playing spouses world wide!

So I closed my eyes, and then opened them, and it was time to get up. Don't you hate nights like that....*blink* TIME TO GET UP! grrr.

So, I take a shower, get dressed, and I am ready to tackle my day. As I'm backing out of my driveway at 4:50 am the first warning sign appears. My neighbor, is backing out of her driveway in parallel to me. I think to myself, "Oh no you don't!" and then quickly realize that I'm not really on a mission to participate in BF...I'm only doing this for the cheap SD card. I yield to my neighbor and let her steam off ahead of me.

There shouldn't be traffic at 4:50 in the morning...but this was BF and there was traffic. Cars from all directions were converging on one spot. Wal-to-the-Mar-tizzle.

I pulled into the Wizzle Mizzle parking lot and my next warning sign smacks me in the face...I shouldn't have to park this far away at 5:00 am. But again, this is BF. I walked as calmly as I could into the store. You see, as I got closer and closer to the store, doubt started to creep in. "What if they are all gone?" "What if my neighbor takes the last one?" "What if I don't get what I want? NEED?" Get a grip on yourself, Nate, you're not here for the spectacle of the thing! You're not one of these people! You just want cheap memory!!!! AAAAAAAAAHHHHH



Swoosh....the automatic doors allow me entrance into a nightmare that I can scarcely describe. TVs Computers, DVD players, Barbies, Bratz, you name it, were piled high in every single cart I saw.

I made my way back to the electronics department where things were probably the most crowded. I felt like I almost needed to keep my arms at my side and just pivot on one foot and look around...moving in any one direction was not really an option. But then, I got into the flow of a mass of people who were making their way along the "Deal Islands" that were set out. My eyes scanned for the tiny little plastic SD cards.

And then I saw them. They were almost hidden on an end-cap to one of these "Deal Islands." When I saw them, I could almost hear the opening to the classic Star Wars soundtrack song "The Duel of the Fates." I grabbed one. And then I thought about the deal that I was getting and I grabbed another. That was a mistake. That sent forth a blend of chemicals into my brain that I can only equate to some sort of consumer adrenaline. My eyes glazed over. My brain started computing percentage of savings for portable DVD players, tvs, and I soon was becoming overwhelmed by the frenzy around me.

Luckily for me, I got out of there with only 3 extra items that I hadn't intended to buy, and I can honestly say that they were all returned later that morning. When the lady at the return counter asked me if there was anything wrong with the items I was returning, I replied, "Nope. They're just fine. I think someone must have just gotten a bit overzealous this morning at all the great deals." HAHAHA as if I was returning someone else's mistake or lack of discipline. Well, maybe that could be partly true, since I was really a different person when I snatched them up.

In the end, this was a great learning experience. I now know that if I'm ever going to try something like this again in the future, I will need to bring a buddy along to keep me focused and in check.

Any volunteers?

Monday, November 13, 2006


Probably one of my top five favorite songs. You may have to wait a bit for the music.

To my God and my wife. Love you.

Silence by blindside

They won't see the fire you have lit inside of me
They look up to the stars and wonder where you might be
They look up without realizing they're standing in the palm of your hand
I can't explain or understand
I just love you

It's common knowledge that you've been dead for a while
It's well known that the cross is only a burden with pains and trials
But then again how come my shoes are so light
How come I can walk for miles
And still just love you

So I think I'll stay
Caught up in a silent prayer
'Cause I believe in silence
Our hearts speak the same word
So why don't we just walk along
The shoreline with our silent song
'Cause I believe in silence
Our hearts speak the same word, the same word

We have to prove that our love is real over and over again
But let them think what they want 'cause I know it will never end
Because I know when it began
And my heart still beats twice as fast whenever you walk by
'Cause I still love you

So I think I'll stay
Caught up in a silent prayer
'Cause I believe in silence
Our hearts speak the same word
So why don't we just walk along
The shoreline with our silent song
'Cause I believe in silence
Our hearts speak the same word, the same word
The same word, the same word, the same word

So I think I will stay
Caught up in a silent prayer
'Cause I believe in silence
Our hearts speak the same word
So why don't we just walk along
The shoreline with our silent song
'Cause I believe in silence
'Cause I believe in silence
'Cause I believe in silence
Our hearts speak the same word, the same word

Friday, November 03, 2006

Connecting the Dots.

My last two posts may have seemed like random fyi's, but there was a purpose in me posting them.

First, let me say that I did not come up with those on my own. They are copy/paste from the Internet.

So, what are the dots, and what's the connection? Well, for me it is this.

1. Water
2. Sleep
3. Food

1. Water, more of it
2. Sleep, in bed by 10:00pm
3. Food, none after 8:00pm

Why? Well, I'm not on a huge push to drop a bunch of weight or anything like that. I picked these three things because they require absolutely no investment whatsoever. I don't have to buy a membership to a gym, I don't have to try to squeeze another hour in to my day. But, they contribute hugely to one's health, as can be seen by the facts that were posted. Seems like a no brainer.

Now some of you may be asking, "But I didn't read anything about the 'no food after 8:00pm' thing" You are correct, and there is a reason for that. The reason I didn't post anything about it is because as far as I can tell, it's a myth. From what I found on the Internet, there is really nothing overwhelmingly good or bad about eating late. Yes, I found info that suggests that sugars in your system inhibit the process of such and such and that can contribute to poor quality of sleep and whatnot. But I didn't find anything that was as concrete as the other two things.

Drinking water all day has been easy at work, but getting to bed by 10:00 has been the hardest thing. I think the closest I've come is 10:04 one time. Eating after 8:00pm...I've cheated a bit on that as well. But overall, this hopefully becomes a longterm overall change.

Who knows.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006


Interesting facts about Sleep

  • During a normal night's sleep, there are five different stages of sleep – and each of them is quite different from the other four.
  • When we are sleeping deeply, our breathing, our heart rate and blood pressure reach their lowest levels of the day.
  • While we are dreaming, we experience REM – rapid eye movement. This is a very active time for both the body and the brain.
    While we are dreaming, our brain patterns are similar to those we experience while being awake.
  • Most adults need about eight hours of sleep to function at their best, but studies have shown that most adults don't get much more than seven.
  • We sleep more lightly during the second half of the night than during the first.
  • Cats sleep up to 18 hours a day, giraffes usually not more than 20 minutes.
  • Your body is on a 24-hour body clock, which makes you wind down between 1 a.m. and 6 a.m. and again in the three hours directly after lunch. We are really made to have siestas.
  • It is more difficult to wake a child than an adult from deep sleep – often children will be disorientated and have no recollection of this later.
  • Many people who suffer from insomnia suffer from anxiety and depression.
  • Our large body muscles are paralysed while we sleep – most probably to stop us from doing what we are dreaming about.
  • We go through four to six sleep cycles during a good night's sleep, moving through the different stages and back again.
  • The average person wakes up about six times per night.
  • Your body temperature falls in the early morning hours, reaches a low at about 4 a.m. and then rises again just before sunrise.
  • Researchers have never been able to agree exactly why the body needs sleep, except that it is restoring to our bodies and our brains.
  • Even when we are sleeping very deeply, there is still a part of us that picks up sounds and signals from the world around us. That's why parents wake up when the baby cries, but they don't hear the howling southeaster.
  • Women and older people most often suffer from insomnia.