Wednesday, January 28, 2009

President Obama chooses pragmatism over principle

Chuck Colson (pictured above) of Prison Fellowship and BreakPoint Ministries wrote this article and I wanted you to see it. I am sad that we have a president who is so inexperienced and who's values run very counter to mine. The mainstream media is singing the praises of their new president. They campaigned hard for him and they should be proud of their accomplishment!

This article is well written and definitely something we should be aware of. Here is Colson's article:

As I noted yesterday on BreakPoint, the inauguration of America’s first African-American President was one of the most moving moments in American history.

But now that the celebrations are over, it’s time to take a close look at how President Obama is planning to govern. And the closer I look, the greater my concerns. In his first week in office, he showed shown an alarming tendency to choose pragmatism over principle.

For example, I applaud the President ordering higher ethical standards for lobbying. “If you are a lobbyist entering my administration,” Obama said, “you will not be able to work on matters you lobbied on, or in the agencies you lobbied during the previous two years.”

Unless, that is, your name is William Lynn. Obama appointed him as deputy secretary of defense—despite the fact that, until very recently, he had been a lobbyist for Raytheon, one of the nation’s biggest defense contractors, right up until the time he was appointed.

When the press challenged him on this, Obama said Lynn was uniquely qualified to do the job, so he issued a waiver. How was he uniquely qualified? He knew how the system worked.

Pragmatism trumped principle.

Obama used the same argument when it turned out that his choice for Treasury secretary, Tim Geithner, had neglected to pay $35,000 in self-employment taxes for a number of years. Senator Robert Byrd—a member of Obama’s own party—called Geithner’s behavior “inexcusable negligence.” He’s right.

Again, pragmatism trumped principle. Click here to read the rest of the article.

What do you think? I would love to hear from you. Tye out.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Barak Obama and history in the making

  • My office at First Baptist Church in Medina, Ohio.
  • The milk cooler at Flav-O-Rich Dairy in Rossville, Georgia.
  • My living room in Wadsworth, Ohio.
  • The nursery at the Gospel House in Walton Hills, Ohio.
  • Orchestra/band practice at Temple Baptist Church, Rossville, GA.
Those are some of the places I remember being when history was made or a significant, historic event occurred.

And it is not likely that you will forget what your were doing on this historic day when the first ever African-American was sworn into office as the President of the United States. Our nation has come a long way since the Emancipation Proclamation by Abraham Lincoln, January 1, 1863 as this nation headed toward its third bloody year of civil war.

Our nation has come a long way since the rioting in the south in the 50's and 60's. Desegregation, while messy and difficult, helped move our nation away from segregation and toward a nation where all men are born with "inalienable" rights.

Martin Luther King, Jr. took a stand and would not back down. He had a dream and I can't help think that I am watching that dream come true. Rosa Parks represents African-Americans who took a stand against the evils of segregation and many of them, like King, payed the ultimate sacrifice. (If you click on the link to Martin Luther King, Jr. You will be treated a sermon by Dr. King on servant leadership. Amazing)

Today I feel proud to be an American. I also feel humbled to be a Christ-follower because I realize that it is from the Bible, the Creator God's word to mankind, gives us the rights we so graciously enjoy here in the states. Having been to nations that do not enjoy the freedoms we enjoy here I can say this.

While I most certainly do not agree with much of President Obama's ideology, I am commanded in the Bible to pray for him. No one really knows, outside of God, what the next four years will bring us.

May God bless our new president and his family. May God bless our great nation! Tye out.

P.S. Here is the historical events mentioned in my opening:
  • 9/11 Terrorist Attack (I watched the second plane drive into the tower)
  • Challenger Space Shuttle Disaster
  • U.S. Invasion into Iraq (The next day I flew to Belgium.)
  • O. J. Simpson trial verdict (the only TV at the church was in the nursery for closed circuit)
  • Tragic death of Dale Earnhardt in Daytona, Florida at the Daytona 500.

Friday, January 16, 2009

President Bush's Final TV Address

President Bush's final TV address on Thursday, January 15 was upstaged by a near tragic event on the Hudson River where a pilot of an Airbus 320 managed to ditch his crippled plane in the river. Pres. Bush endured an incredibly difficult 8 years and had many, many successes. Click here to hear the 14 minute speech.

I am saddened that our nation has elected an inexperienced candidate who has already changed his mind on many things. What is sadder is the fact that the press, who attacked Sarah Palin and John McCain with a vengeance for everything they said, has once again given "their" candidate a free pass.

I would like to honor President Bush and say thank you for serving our country through some very difficult times. Thank you for keeping your promises and having integrity while doing so. Thank you for the example you provided us as a strong, yet compassionate leader. You never asked our country to go where you had never been.

God bless the Bush's as they return to "normal" life and may God bless our great nation!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Meet Nick Vujicic

This one needs no explanation. Click here for more information.

Australia offers 'best job in world' on paradise island - and a lesson for the church

I have been in the ministry full-time now for almost 18 years and we have never had money to take vacations, other than to see relatives and then do fun things there. We have had two family vacations in 23 years and I think I have found the solution!

Australia is looking to hire someone to live on an island paradise for 6 months and blog about the island in order to raise the level of tourism. Click here for the entire article.

SYDNEY (AFP) – An Australian state is offering internationally what it calls "the best job in the world" -- earning a top salary for lazing around a beautiful tropical island for six months.

The salary - $105,000 USD for six months.

In return, the "island caretaker" will be expected to stroll the white sands, snorkel the reef, take care of "a few minor tasks" -- and report to a global audience via weekly blogs, photo diaries and video updates.

But why are they doing this?
"Traditional tourism advertising just doesn't cut it sometimes and we are thinking outside the box by launching this campaign."

Have I got your attention yet? I believe there is a leadership lesson in this. I believe that the church that is successful in the future will have to use these types of marketing ideas. Here's how it works:

1. Pastors/leaders begin blogging/twittering about their experiences. Click here to see a post I read about this topic yesterday.
2. Followers of Christ begin living their lives "for the whole world to see." It is truly possible that when the world sees what we have in Christ and who we are in him they might want to "explore the island."
3. While the pay might not be that good, the benefits are out of this world!

Whattayathink? Let me know. Tye out.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Happy birthday Erica!

Today is Erica's birthday, Andrew's fiancee's. We had a very short celebration in between activities on a very busy day. Someone baked her a delicious cake and made it somewhat healthy by subbing applesauce for the sugar. You can click on the pic for a slide show and try to count the candles on the cake!

Happy birthday Erica! Have a great day! Tye out.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Painting the master bedroom and bathroom

I had the week off between Christmas and New Year's and came up with a to-do list appropriate to the amount of time I had off - so I thought.

Wednesday morning I picked up the paint at Home Depot and on Friday afternoon I started prepping the rooms to be painted. We moved some of the furniture out and covered everything else. Blue painter's tape protected the woodwork and I readied my canvas drop cloth. Click on the pic for a slide show.

Saturday morning I started "cutting in" which means painting all the edges next to the ceiling and woodwork. This required two coats. Special thanks to Todd Stafford for coming over and helping me. I got the first "cut in" coat done by 12:30 PM and then we headed on to a wedding.

At 6:30 PM I resumed painting as I cut in the second coat. At 11:15 I decided to roll the first coat and it took me until 1:15 am to finish. Sunday afternoon I finished the second coat between the morning and evening services at the church.

Monday night I began the process of putting everything back together and cleaning up. Also, I had to fix a bad crack over the door which involved cutting out part of the old drywall and then retaping it. I decided to paint around the problem while I worked on it. Tonight (Thursday) I applied the texture and tomorrow I will finish painting.

I enjoy painting a great deal because (1) it is fairly easy to do, (2) it is one thing I actually know how to do pretty well, and (3) it is very rewarding when you finish. Tye out.

Ty installs our DIRECTV

Welp, as many of you know we decided to ditch the cable and go with satellite tv and DIRECTV was the best option. We decided to get the DVR to go with it and the 200 channels. Once again I am enjoying episodes of Seinfeld along with the History Channel, Military Channel, Discovery (can you say "Mythbusters"?), and lots of other fun stuff.

Funny thing. Ty (pictured above) was the name of our installer. Actually, his name is Tyrone, just like me. He was polite, knowledgeable, and very professional. Thanks Ty for a job well done! Click here for a brief slide show.

We bundled ours with Qwest DSL and saved some money. I'm glad to be away from Mediacom. Tye out.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Ten Commandments - Redneck Version

The Ten Commandments - Redneck version (sent to my by my good friend Patt Papesh)

(1) Just one God

(2) Put nothin' before God

(3) Watch yer mouth

(4) Git yourself to Sunday meetin'

(5) Honor yer Ma & Pa

(6) No killin'

(7) No foolin' around with another fellow's gal

(8) Don't take what ain't yers

(9) No tellin' tales or gossipin'

(10) Don't be hankerin' for yer buddy's stuff

Works for me!
Tye out.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

John & KellyTravolta's grief

I have been absorbed in home projects this weekend and failed to notice that the John Travolta and Kelly Preston had suffered the tragic loss of their 16 year old son. You can read about here, or just do a Google search.

I can't begin to imagine what it would be like to lose a child to death and one such as this. The grief that they are experiencing must be intense and difficult to say the least. What do you say to someone to encourage them in times like this?

I'm not sure what I would say if I did not believe that there is a God with a plan and purpose for every single one of us. God, our Creator, knows what is best in our lives and also knows how best to encourage and bring some kind of sense to such a tragic event.

When you put your faith and confidence in Jesus Christ alone he fuses your life with meaning, purpose, and value. I feel bad for people who either refuse to trust God or have never heard the message in a relevant way.

If you believe in prayer I encourage you to say a prayer for the Travolta's, their family, and friends. If you don't believe in God or prayer, I'm not sure what you are supposed to do. Tye out.

Now we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers and sisters, about those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve like the rest who have no hope. 1 Thessalonians 4:13 NET

Friday, January 02, 2009

Reading your Bible in 2009

I just finished my 2008 read-through of the Bible this morning. I am a couple days late but it was thrilling to read through John's Apocalypse this morning and cross the finish line. It was exhilarating and sobering at the same time.

2008 was an interesting year in many respects. My wife was consumed with nursing school and I became consumed with a flood here in CR. With her being gone a lot I wasn't able to firewall a lot of time for reading like I had in previous years.

Last year I read the Bible through a couple times and the year before that three times. This year was just once.

I will start my 2009 read-through tomorrow morning and I hope to finish sometime in December. For me, here are the keys to success when attempting to read God's word:

1. Have a plan - this is the most important. I use Google "Bible read through" and you can find online plans that you can even print out.
2. Read at your best time - for me it is right after workouts before showering. This is usually around 6:30-7 AM.
3. Have a designated place - I used to read at Panera but as Mr. Mom I had to be home in the mornings for Mackenzie. I either read at the dining room table or my desk whichever has the most woodgrain showing!
4. Listen to soothing music or sounds - I use headphones to cancel out voices and noises. I use one of those meditation type trax with the sounds of the ocean and pan pipes. If I listen to jazz, I wind up digging the cool licks.
5. Stay slightly ahead - Mark Forstrom recommended this one. He says that if you are always behind then your attitude won't be as good. It's best to read out of abundance rather than deficit.
6. Grace-oriented - if you get behind either skip ahead and get back on track or adjust your reading schedule.

Good luck with your Bible reading this year! Let me know how it goes. Tye out.

Every scripture is inspired by God and useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the person dedicated to God may be capable and equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 NET

Thursday, January 01, 2009

.4235 lb burgers on the grill

It's been a couple months since we had hamburgers on the grill so I decided to fire up the grill and have an indoor picnic tonight. I took pictures of the evening and you can see them by clicking here.

As I was doing the cooking encountered a couple minor issues:

1. The 29 degrees Fahrenheit caused the charcoal to take 45 minutes to heat up, rather than the usual 20 minutes.

2. I thought the packages of ground beef contained one pound each. They were two pound packages. I typically make four burgers per pound, so we had 1/2 pound burgers. Since the meat was 93% lean, they were REALLY around .4235 pounds each. The burgers were filling.

3. The cooking of the .4235 lb burgers took a lot longer to cook than a .263 burger would.

4. The cold temps also added to the cooking time, so it took about 30 minutes to cook the .4235 lb burgers.

The family was appreciative of the delicious .4235 lb hamburgers even though three folks could not finish theirs! Tye out.

One word: DeWALT

Ever since I came back from Mexico, and my cordless drill died, I have had my eye some cordless drills. DeWALT has several kits. Of course the one that I liked was the expensive one.

Well, Monday I saw that the kit I wanted dropped $170!!! Plus, I had a coupon for 10% off, 12 months same-as-cash. I picked it up Wednesday and already used the drill to fix a towel rod that had ripped out of the wall. Click here for the specs.

And with the flood relief I am sure that I will be able to get some use out of it. A very grateful Tye out.

P.S. Only a guy would post this, and I did. Click here for more pics.

Top Ten New Year's Resolutions for Couples

I saw this article in an email and thought I would pass it on to you today. I highly recommend the following ideas for couples who are serious about their relationship.

Top 10 New Year's Resolutions for Couples

In an article appearing in Associated Content, Sally Albright suggests that the new year is a good time for couples to be reminded of some simple but powerful ways to strengthen their relationships. To that end, she presents her Top Ten New Year's Resolutions for Couples:

#10: Exercise Together
Exercising together as a couple can make getting more exercise fun, and you and your spouse can truly have a "healthy" relationship.

#9: Cook Together
Cooking dinner together is a great way to spend time together.

#8: Play Games Together
Take the time to have some fun with your spouse by playing games together — especially in the colder winter months.

#7: The Little Things
Sometimes, it's the littlest of things that really matter. Something as simple as setting the coffee machine to brew in the morning or opening the car door for your spouse can really show how much you care.

#6: Get Romantic
The types of romantic gestures you do really depends on what your spouse considers to be romantic, whether it be bouquets of flowers or cuddling together and watching a football game on TV.

Click here to read the rest. Tye out.