Thursday, October 6, 2011

We've moved

This is just a reminder, this blog has now moved to Wordpress. Please change your bookmarks and RSS feeds to For those in Russia, Germany and other ares that routinely read my blog from the search engine, please change it to wordpress as well.

Thank you all for your readership on Blogger and to all who find this because of Zombies, I'm glad you came. Come for the Zombies, stay for Jesus.


Friday, September 30, 2011

Blog moving

To all my wonderful readers (and those who found this blog by searching for Zombies), I am slowly moving it over to wordpress. Please find me at

The Force of comfort

I've always thought that Lucas' idea of midichlorians in the bloodstream to explain the Force was always a cop out. It was a bad attempt to explain something mystical. Very bad. But now it's part of it all. I've always wondered if a Jedi had a blood transfusion with a non-Jedi if the recipients midichlorian count go up or not. But that's not what this Spiritual Sci-Fi Friday is all about.

In A New Hope (spoiler alert) Ben Kenobi became the mentor martyr to save Luke and the rest. He was dead. Yet, in the final battle, Luke hears Ben's voice coming to him loud and clear. In The Empire Strikes Back, Obi Wan is all blue and sparkly. At the end of Return of the Jedi, Obi Wan, Yoda and Anikan (first the older guy then Hayden Christiansen) were all blue and sparkly. The Force allowed them to come back. The midichlorians were strong in them and held them together.

In many ways, this gave us all hope and comfort. They weren't dead. They were still around by the power of the Force. The midichlorians were still mystical after all and things were good to go. The battle has been won! The unblinking primitive Ewoks helped defeat the massive Empire. And all is good with the world.

I think we're all like that. We love the victory. We love the ability to overcome adversity. We love those highs that we get in knowing that all things are working out for our benefit. And it's great. It's wonderful. And we want to live in that moment forever.

And then Heir to the Empire comes in. I can't believe I've never read this book. I bought it for my brother back when it first came out. But I never read it. Until now.

And it's all different (spoiler alert). At the start of it, Luke's depressed. Hahn and Leia are married and are stressed. Wow. That sounds like my life. And even ol'Ben Kenobi is fading away, no longer able to stick around. Where's the comfort after death? Where's the happy ending?

So many times this is more of our reality than it is the Battle of Endor. The emperor may be defeated but we will always have our Grand Admiral Thrawn. And the battle continues. With all these attacks and battles, where's the comfort of the Force?

What about us? What about our comfort. There's this thing called the Heidelberg Catechism. It's a great document. It starts out with this question: What is your only comfort in life and in death? Not what is your greatest, what is your best, what is the one that you like. What is your only comfort in life and in death.

The answer: That I am not my own, but belong—body and soul, in life and in death—to my faithful Savior Jesus Christ. Dude. Now that's epic.

Midichlorian counts don't matter in this. It doesn't matter how the count is, you can only be blue and sparkly for so long. Yet we have so much more in the long run with Jesus being our only comfort.

I can rattle on and on about this. Honestly, yes, I've laid at wake at night thinking about this stuff. That and what ever happened to Qui-Gon Jinn.

What about you? Where's your comfort?

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Take your pic

I'll be honest, it's been tough. I'm having a hard time relaxing. I used to relax, refresh, renew and recharge by hitting the gym. I'd blast the music in my ears and the world would disappear as I did my squats, bench press and curls. I'd focus on the movements of my traps, my lats and my triceps. I'd focus on my stance and on my technique. Nothing else existed outside of that room. Nothing. I set up my heavy bag in the back yard and later in the garage on a stand. I'd go at it. Just me and the bag. Nothing else. Just me and the bag. And the world disappeared. I was able to find that moment where I could just exist and refresh, renew and recharge for the day and be ready for, work.

But over the last two months, this hasn't happened. I'm going stir crazy to tell the truth. I haven't been able to get that recharge I so need to keep on keeping on. I'm not able to get that moment where nothing else exists. The physical activity hurt my lungs and left me short of breath. I wasn't resting to get better like I was supposed to.

It was suggested to find something else. Something that can still take my mind away and be able to renew, refresh and recharge without the intense physical activity. I have an old dusty guitar that was given to us my my in-laws back in '03. I dusted it off. Popped in Guitar for Dummies and have been torturing my fingers since.

It's harder than I thought. My left hand hurts and gets cramped. My finger tips are getting all tingly and weird sometimes. My fingers just don't know how to fing, as if my phalanges on my left hand never realized that, yes, they too would eventually work one day.

I was told that it takes time. It takes time for the fingers to develop the callouses needed to play. The pain is the muscles in the fingers learning something new. The pain and the callouses, though they hurt and tingle now, will make the music come out more clearer here soon.

I also have to remind myself that when I picked up weight lifting in high school, I was sore for days on end. It hurt. And when I started using my heavy bag, I could only go a few minutes at a time.

And so, I solider on. I'm gonna cowboy up and I'm gonna find a way to get relaxed. I don't think I've worked this hard to relax in a while.

What about you, how do you refresh, renew and relax? How have you had to change things up or at all?

Monday, September 26, 2011

Point Break

I've been doing Weight Watchers (for Men) since July. I've lost 20lbs. The last 15 have come off even without much activity on my part. This lack of activity is not from trying. Trust me. I tried skipping rope. I tried going at my heavy bag. But this blasted walking pneumonia has taken me down a few pegs.To tell the truth, in many ways, it has humbled me. I don't like admitting it, that's for sure.

I've learned that, no, I cannot do it all. I've learned that I must rely on others when attempting to do something. I've learned that I must accept the generosity of others when they are trying to help. And this has been hard.

I've also learned that I eat a lot of crap sometimes. I went to Pizza Ranch last week to celebrate my kiddos' birthdays (they're born right next to each other three years apart). Last week I had a max of 66 points for the day and 49 wiggle room points. I knew I was going to Pizza Ranch that night so I did my best to conserve points. But I still went over the top and hit 90 points that night, being left with 27 wiggle room points. I looked through what I ate. Did I really need that second piece of fried chicken goodness? Did I need to eat a second Bronco Pizza slice?

Where did my control go? I do great that day, even turning down a slice of warm apple crumble with vanilla ice cream at my classis (regional governing body CRC's in this area) meeting on Tuesday so I could go to Pizza Ranch that night.

The rest of the week wasn't any better. Too much cake. Too much ice cream. Not enough rest to get over my walking pneumonia. Yet, God has been good to me. Smiling down on me and allowing me to break through the weight limit when I got below 310. Okay, so it's 309.8 but still. It's better than what I was worried it would be.

So, this week, I begin with new vigor. I am recharged to keep at it. Now, I just gotta do it. I need to place my own pride to the side and keep moving forward. I'm even trying to not emphasize the "For Men" part. But it's hard. It's like carrying around a murse. Of course, I call it a satchel. It's a satchel until you put chap stick in it.

In my own spiritual health, I'm trying to do my best with putting aside me pride. And it's hard. I know I need to place my self second before God, to humble myself before him and admit that I can't do it all myself. That is hard to do when you're someone who is used to plowing forward on your own and doing it by yourself.

Next week is communion at church. We'll be taking the Lord's Supper. I'm spending this week reflecting on that. And the question that came up for me this week too is how many points is communion anyway? I've decided that it's 0 points for the grace we have in Jesus and also listed as a power food because it fuels us to go forward.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Thor and Peace

I'm worried that I've lost points on my geek card. I didn't get a chance to see Thor in the theaters. I didn't get to see Captain America in the theaters either. (Bought a blue '08 Dodge Avenger and named it Captain American though. Might be able to save some geek points on that one.) But I have been watching Disney XD's Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes.

I've learned a few things from Thor on that show. In the comic books, (and movie I'm told) Thor is cast out of Asgard (the home of the Norse gods) and sent to Midgard (earth) because he is cocky, stubborn and arrogant. And he is cast out of heaven and sent to live amongst the mortals to learn humility and the need to put others first.

But Thor in Disney XD's version is different. He values honor. He also has a heart for the people of Midgard. He wishes to protect them. He wishes to help them. In fact, he voluntarily leaves Asgard when asked to stay behind during Odin's yearly Odin Sleep. He refuses and goes to Midgard to battle and protect. Yes, he's a bit misguided. yes, he's a bit arrogant about it. But still he wants to do his best to help others.

I like that about him. And honestly, I try to do the same, of course with out Mjölnir of course (his hammer). I also try hard to push forward and to help and to do what I can. I have a great heart for the people out there in need of help. It's not a messiah complex or anything. I'm not out to save the people. But I want to make a dent to help those in need. Those who are hurting. Those who are struggling. Those who are in pain and can use the healing found in the Great Physician Jesus. (This is a Spiritual Sci-Fi Friday, remember). And I push hard. I give my all and I still falter.

The one thing about Thor is that he realized that he needed help too. In the Disney XD version, he sees that he needs to team up with others to fight off the baddies. And this leads to the formation of The Avengers (Wasp suggests that name because to her, it just sounds cool.). Alone, the Avengers can do okay. But together, they can do so much more.

And I have to remind myself of that. I'm not at this alone. There are others with me. There are others who are able to work with me to help those in need. Not only that, but in The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes, the teammates help each other out personally. They encourage one another, they have fun with one another. They have each other's backs. And we all need this for our own spiritual, emotional and physical well being. We all need a team of people to help us, encourage us and fight the good fight with us.

I have that team with me here at my church I serve. I also have that team with me with my good friends all over the place. We encourage and help one another.

What's your team? Who encourages, supports and fights the fight with you?

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

When I am weak

I'm not liking this. I'm not liking being told I can't do something. Whenever I've been told "You can't" to me that's a challenge not a deceleration. I was told I was physically unable to learn Hebrew due to language aphasia. Guess what I did? Yeah. I learned it. Spent hours working on it. But I did it. When I was told that I couldn't win against Apollo Creed, guess what I did? Wait, that's Rocky.

But now that I've been sick for the last month, I've been told I can't push myself to hard. That I can't lift weights. I can't go all ape poopy on my heavy bag. I can't even jump rope. I said watch me and guess what happened? I nearly passed out. This walking pneumonia is one big bad word.

So, I have to accept my weakness. Which I hate. I really do. I mean, c'mon, I have to actually admit that I cannot do something! You gotta be kidding me? I can't do something? I've always been able to do what I put my mind to. Yet, this one time, I can't. And it bugs the frak out of me, to tell the truth.

So, what do I do? I think of these words from Paul who had a thorn in his side that wouldn't come out. He begged and begged for it to come out and it didn't. Then Jesus said to him

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." 2 Corinthians 12:9

So, I will live in this weakness. For when I am weak then is He strong. Now, I just gotta keep telling myself that over and over again. I have to stop. And admit I can't do something. I need to stop and trust that Jesus will do what he said he would. He is the Great Physician so why can't use medication to heal me. So, I must rest and wait. I'll maybe get my geek on with reading some Full Metal Alchemist. That might work.

What about you? What weakness/es are you struggling with right now?