Wednesday, September 24, 2008

My mind is filled with new ideas.

So, I'm eating Chinese food today, yet again. Or as "someone" pointed out, it was just Panda Express, not REAL Chinese food. Anyway, I get to the most exciting part of the meal (second only to guessing if the dried up Orange Chicken is still any good). This excitement, of course, comes from the wonderful source of wisdom and insight and inspiration and direction and guidance that can all be found inside a fortune cookie.

Today, my fortune read: "Your mind is filled with new ideas. Make use of them."

So, that got me wondering. What new ideas are trapped inside this brain of mine, and why do so few of them seem to be showing up lately?

Perhaps I need to water and fertilize these new ideas. Perhaps they are still little baby ideas that need time to grow. Or perhaps they remain trapped inside a mental cocoon, undergoing their remarkable metamorphosis.

Or perhaps someone put something into my Dr Pepper this evening and is causing me to ramble on mercilessly.

For now, I shall simply sleep well knowing that my mind is filled with new ideas. Maybe tomorrow I will be able to discover one or two of these ideas.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The Christian ghetto and me.

I realized this evening that in just a few weeks, I’ll no longer be on the staff of my church. This wasn’t a sudden realization, of course, but for some reason it struck me tonight as I sat inside a local Starbucks doing some editing work.

It’s quite likely that my next career step will be a season as a freelance editor and writer. I don’t know if that season will last six months, a year, two years, or longer. But I’m excited to see what God has in store.

And while working tonight, I realized that as a pastor, I’ve done a pretty weak job of developing meaningful relationships with people who don’t attend my church or don’t already have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Back in my newspapers days, I had friends from a wide range of backgrounds. They weren’t all Christians.

One of my hopes and goals and desires is that in this next season of my life, I’ll do a better job of breaking out of my Christian ghetto.

Monday, September 22, 2008

My choice for president...

...will remain my own personal decision, at least for a few weeks. I'm still on staff at a church, and I don't ever want anyone confusing my personal choices with any kind of "promotion" or "mandate" from our congregation.

But I expect that around November 1st, I'll probably post something explaining who I intend to vote for and why. I hope some of you will remain my friends after that. I'm kidding. Sorta. Well, kidding that some of you might be upset when you read my decision, not kidding that I want to remain your friend.

I'm rambling.

I think I'm going to vote absentee once again, but I'll probably wait until the end before filling it out. I hate the thought of voting in the beginning of October but then learning some huge revelation that affects my views and makes me regret my choice.

But for the record, I should state that I will NOT be voting for a third-party candidate, including Ralph Nader, Bob Barr, and Cynthia McKinney. In my book, all three of them are borderline loonies, anyway. So, you can take some confidence -- especially those of you still dismayed over my 1992 vote for Perot -- that I will be voting for one of the two major candidates, warts and all.

And yes, folks, both of them have lots of warts. But if you're really looking to a single politician as the savior of this nation, then you have bigger issues with your worldview, your spiritual condition, and your sanity.

But I hope you'll still be my friend.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

My apologies...

...for not blogging these last two weeks. No real reason for the silence. But I accept your forgiveness for my absence.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Fire at our church

We had an interesting end to the second service today. A fire started in the grassy area behind our church sanctuary. The church sits on a 28-acre lot, and much of the property remains undeveloped. The fire department responded with numerous vehicles, and a helicopter even flew over at one point to drop some fire retardant. Needless to say, it was quite a memorable day!

Fortunately, no one was injured, and no property was damaged. The fire was near one of our parking lots, but we cleared out all the vehicles. It was a little windy today, but the wind was carrying the flames away from that parking lot and the nearby sanctuary.

We had numerous cars attempt to enter the church grounds as spectators, but we were able to keep most of them moving. Otherwise, it would have created a roadblock for the firetrucks that needed access.

Here are some photos. The first shot up top is mine. The remaining pictures come from Bob Clements.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

A room for rent...

I have a room available in my 4-bedroom house near Century Theaters in Old Foothill Farms, near Pioneer Elementary School, here in the Sacramento area. Includes access to common living areas, kitchen, nice-sized backyard. Shared bathroom. Bedroom is unfurnished. Good access to I-80. Rent is $395/mth + share of utilities.

For info, please email Rob at

I've posted this in several places. Figured my blog and facebook are good places to include...

Monday, September 01, 2008

Running into people.

I keep running into people. Not with my car, of course. Those situations would probably be described as running OVER people.

No, I keep going to events and places here in Sacramento and bumping into people I haven't seen in awhile, and oddly enough, it's almost entirely been former students from youth ministry.

Today I was at the state fair with my friend Trista, and we were watching some people on the Rock Band stage (yes, a whole stage dedicated JUST to Rock Band). Suddenly, a person standing a few week away gets my attention and says hi. Turns out it was a former student from my youth ministry days.

That also happened on Saturday. It happened last weekend, too. Just seems to be a recurring theme lately.

Oh and this was a pic from the state fair, too. A couple decided to bring their "baby" to the fair. Turns out it was a dog.