Wednesday, November 23, 2005

american music awards

I saw a little of the American Movie Awards last night and the performances stunk.
Just because someone is allegedly famous does not mean they should be allowed to think they can sing.

Lindsay Lohan and Hillary Duff are classic examples. They should be on the show, "But can they sing?" on VH1... and the answer would be... "no they can't." :) Any ways - it seems like image and celebrity clouds the brain and you start believing things about yourself that aren't necessarily true.

For example - if I was a celebrity - I may think I can blog and have important things to say. :) But... I don't.

So I wish you a happy Thanksgiving and I thank the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob for His lovingkindness and for the relationships we enjoy.

If you were a celebrity, what would you get talked into doing that you probably shouldn't be doing?


Monday, November 21, 2005

Thanksgiving is a whole life gig.

One of the things I was reminded of at my week long seminar was that the Western worldview is dualistic. In other words - we break up our bodies and our lives into little compartments. I have a body, I have a soul, I have a spirit, I have a mind, etc... But the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is a God who created us good and whole - not a bunch of parts - with some being good and some needed to be overcome. The physical which we often see as bad is actually good and not something we need to rise above.

So - I was reminded that God has given us everything and that we should respond with thanks.

During the conference Dwight (the teacher) mentioned that we should give thanks at all occasions and even mentioned that there were prayer of thanks for even our times of using the restroom. (Thank you God for opening our... you get the picture.) In other words, be thankful for even the little, basic, things we take forgranted.

So the next time you are in the restroom say thanks. :)


Thursday, November 17, 2005

Not really getting it...

Before I came to this conference I announced to my wife and to myself that I would stay quiet and not get goofy and just listen.

I didn't keep that promise.

You see I have this thing about my brain. When we are in serious discussions and intense deliberations I start making humorous connections... and then I say it just loud enough for a few to hear. In other words - I can't stop goofing off. I am listening well, asking questions, learning a ton, writing pads of notes, but yet giving into those moments that pop in my head.

The good news is - a few people get it - especially Rav (rabbi) Yoshonis. The bad news is - everyone else looks like I have pizza on my face. :)

In anycase - I am having a great time and I thank God for this awesome opportunity.


Wednesday, November 16, 2005

For God so hated the world...

One great point being made repeatedly is that God loves us. HE is filled with lovingkindness and He keeps His promises. I have appreciated being reminded of this truth. The classic thinking of God as the big meanie in the sky waiting to pounce seems to want to creep into my view of God, but I am reminded that I am God's beloved.

Switching gears - I saw "derailed" last night. It was a good movie idea that ran out of time and just transformed the life of the main character in five minutes. In other words it wasn't believable, but still entertaining. There are some horrible scenes of violence and a theme of adultery that made my heart sick with frustration, but it showed a bit of the fruits of walking down that path in an extreme way.

Following God and His guidance brings life - to miss that mark is to see death.

Time to sit down, journal, watch TV, call my wife, pray or just take a nap.

We have sessions that go almost 2 hours four times a day. But, I am having fun.

Some of you emergent types would wet yourself because Rob Bell sat in front of me today! Yipee! ;) You know who you are and stop the hero worship you idolator! :)

Tongue in cheek and biting down,

Monday, November 14, 2005

The Jew in you.

I am participating in a conference called, "Through Messiah's Eyes." This is a Jewish roots conference that deals with the life of Jesus and being a follower of Jesus.

I am hanging out with Pete Yoshonis (my friend, my coach, my rabbi, my huckleberry.)
I feel like I am trying to drink from a fire hydrant, but the good things is that I have a big mouth.

The material is refreshing and interesting and they encourage questions. So, I asked, "What do you think will happen next on Lost?" That didn't go over well. Just kidding, but there was a funny moment when the instructor (Dwight Prior) mentioned that a rabbi's disciples (apprentices) would spend all their time with the rabbi to learn how to live like the rabbi. Apparently there was a mention somewhere that the rabbi's best disciple or student was even able to be under the rabbi's bed while he makes love to his wife to even learn how to be like the rabbi in that regard.

So, I thought about asking our rabbi for the week (Dwight) who gets dibs under his bed tonight, but then the self editing program in my head turned on and saved the day. All this to say - being a disciple is truly becoming like your master in every way! :)

The title speaks to the fact that as a follower of Jesus - my roots - my heritage is in Judaism... Otherwise I am 100% Dutch. Sorry.

I sit at the feet of P YO,

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Diet Coke

"I'll take a Diet Coke."
I say this right after ordering a two cheeseburger extra value meal.

Like that is going to help.

Anyways - I have enjoyed teaching with Steve and Nate. The last couple of weeks we have done tag team styled teaching and it has been a nice change of pace. I am more relaxed and enjoy learning from them as we go.

I have really realized how special our team is. I really enjoy the team that has been fitted together. Some people on our team have made great sacrifices to give their best time to the mission. Others could be doing something more prestigous, or profitable or even easier, but have given their all to God for this calling. We have fun together, we work hard together, we share life together and we pray together and we seek God together.

So, I want to say that I love the team that God has fitted together and I thank God that I get to be a part of this.

Heads up on something. Have you read through the gospels and noticed how many times Jesus heals people? I didn't spend much time reading or pondering these stories because they weren't in the "red", Jesus said them, letters. But, when Jesus proclaimed the KINGDOM of GOD He also demonstrated the Kingdom in power.

I have focused much of my attention over the last two years on living in the Kingdom of God in terms of serving the poor, caring for those without a voice, changing the way I think about money, feeding the hungry, giving hope to the helpless, loving the outsider, etc... This is all very Kingdom living, but I have missed the presence of God's power - the healing that occurs when the Kingdom comes. How God gets involved and when His Kingdom is announced - people's lives and bodies are changed. So I have been studying and praying through what it means to be like my master, Jesus, and to pray for the sick and to announce and demonstrate the Kingdom. I think I need a worldview shift. :)


PS - Special hello to my brother in law: Bif! You will always be Roland in the walk of life. Hile wordslinger.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005


If you've seen that Taco Bell commercial you know the line... "I'm Full!" If I was as savy and gifted as my father I could turn that line into a devotional thought equipped with clever layers of humor.

But, it is just a segway to say that, "I am happy."

Here are a few thoughts on being happy:

I don't think that the point of life is to be happy, but I really like being happy.


Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Wonder if you are making a difference?

I just had one of those fantastic "church planting" moments. I am sitting in our HUB (office/meeting space) which is located in a shopping area. We are next to "Curves" (a women's workout facility), near an appliance store and across the road from a local pharmacy with an old soda fountain. (They make their own root beer.)

Anyways - on our door it says, "Gatherings: Sundays @ Grand Haven High School..." and it tells the times we meet. Just a second a go I heard two women talking loudly outside and one women reads the door and says, "What the hell is Watermark?"

I stood up (previously unseen through the big windows as I sat at my desk) and walked toward the door. They saw me and left quickly.

Funny. I'm afraid that they may have thought that I stood up in a not friendly way - I just reacted and popped up like a jack in the box. Oh well... Just when you start thinking that things are humming along and you want to get a big head you hear: "What the hell is Watermark?" The funny thing is we asked Watermarkers that question (although phrased differently) at our gatherings... :)

Oh well - maybe we have a new bumper sticker to run with... Not: WWJD Not: Love Wins Not: My kid is an honor roll student. BUT: What the hell is Watermark? It will have people talking. :) Fun on the East side of 31.

Was Blonde blonde?

Friday, November 04, 2005


I am Mr. Mom.
Some things I learned the last few days of being home alone with my kids while my wife is sunning her pregnant bod on the beaches of Florida...
1) I can run a dish washer.
2) I can run a washer and dryer.
3) I can make a lunch.
4) I can do homework with my daughter.
5) I can pick up the house.
6) I can make a meal for a life group meeting.

I have been reminded of all the daily things my wife does that I take for granted. I have done all these things before, but when I occasionally do them, I make sure she knows and I get credit. But alas, she quietly, faithfully, makes the family go and for that she is priceless. I think I am going to try to help more around the house... :)

I am surviving.

I have really enjoyed reading Henri Nouwin's book called, "Life of the Beloved." Good stuff maynard.

I have zits,

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

My Top Five Geeky Things

I admit that I enjoy(ed) -
1) Dungeons and Dragons
2) Rick Astley
3) Star Trek the Next Generation
4) The Left Behind book series
5) Wearing cut off jean shorts

I have more, but I am ashamed that I may get laughed off this blog.

What are some of your guilty pleasures? Air Supply? Saved by the Bell?

My wife is going to Florida for a few days so I will be alone with the two kiddos. I am looking forward to my time with them.

Holla back,

This is my Rabbi: (Can you say Emmaus Road? Rock on!)