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September 30, 2003

Prayer request...

Please pray for God’s will in big decisions. More later…

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September 25, 2003

Common threads...

God so made the world...A few of us have been thinking about some of the same things lately (the importance of blogging and the unavoidably cogency of paper versus the cathode ray). These recent conversations have been both strangely comforting and uncomfortably provocative.

I’ve often thought about the subject of collective consciousness (not that I believe in it in any sort of solid, grippable way). Beyond science and philosophy (and mysticism), though, what could “collective consciousness” mean to a follower of Christ? In a way, we do all possess a collective Spirit; that is, if you can manage to stretch the equation of “collective” and “one-in-all.” But does the Holy Spirit (one being who exists within every individual believer) grant us the gift of “common threads”? That is, are “common threads” a valid Spiritual Gift?

God has appeared and spoken to many people throughout the history of the world. He has given some gifts of wisdom and knowledge. He has given others gifts of phrophecy and supernatural power. One thing, though, that is common among all of His gifts, is a closer connection to Him. Those who have been fortunate enough to have direct contact with our Lord have undoubtedly gone away with a greater understanding of what it means to be one of God’s children. (And for all of us, I’d like to thank Jesus Christ for giving everyone the chance to have direct contact!)

I don’t know if “collective consciousness” has anything to do with God’s desire for believers to be one body (one bride, one church, etc.), but it seems feasible. Something inside of me yearns for connection with other believers. It is amazing to know that this connection is more than something that is learned — and much more than simple, “programmed” instinct — but also something that is perpetuated by our entire beings, inhabited by one everpresent and all-knowing Holy Spirit of the Living God.

Our God “sewed” us into existence, yes, but He did not stitch into us the desire to worship and serve Him. This gift is from the Holy Spirit alone. This is our “common thread.”

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September 21, 2003

A short (and somewhat unrelated) story...

An adventure from the wedding…

Too dangerous for children?The bride is a nurse. Because of this, so were many of the guests and attendants in the wedding.

At one point during the reception, my wife and two other Bride’s Maids (all nurses) and I were outside getting some fresh air.

All of a sudden, we heard a bunch of kids yelling, “Please help! Please help us!”

Startled, we looked over towards a nearby playground as three children helped a small, fourth child (a girl) walk across the field that separated the playground from the parking lot. The little girl was crying hysterically.

Upon seeing this, we ran over to see what was wrong. The little girl had gotten her leg stuck under the Merry-Go-Round while it was being pushed and had a large chunk of flesh ripped off of her leg. The flesh was still attached, but she was bleeding a lot.

One of Julianna’s friends picked her up and began to carry her back to the parking lot where the other children had run to fetch their father — these children were not from the wedding and their father was in a nearby gym.

After handing the child off to another man who was taking a break from the wedding, the nurses went to find some first aid supplies. All they could find was an Ace bandage and a Maxi-Pad — quite an ingenious form of sterile gauze if you’re ever stuck out in the wilderness.

While the nurses were at work, the father turned to another of his daughters and asked her to go get her brother. All she could say was, “But he’s playing one-on-one!”

The father annoyingly responded, “Go get your brother and tell him that it is time for us to go!”

The girl turned and began to walk over to the basketball courts. No fast enough though, as Dad yelled, “Run! Go and get him quickly!”

After wrapping the girl’s leg, the father got his kids and left (hopefully, to go to an Urgent Care or the hospital).

What a day! (As if weddings aren’t stressful enough.)

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From criticism to contemplation...

I’m sitting at one end of a grape-purple pew — one out of countless others — on a vast grape-purple carpet, surrounded by faux marble columns and off-white, faux adobe walls. In front of me are gold steps that lead up to a huge purple stage, housing various musical instruments, or else the chairs where musicians and their instrument could be found on any given Sunday (each chair and monitor — or speaker — is purple too). There are also some other throne-like chairs, to the left, that I assume the Senior Pastor and his co-Ministers sit in during each service. The rest of the stage floor is taken up by an impressive amount of faux lilies, faux tulips, and other faux dried flower arrangements. The far end of the stage is occupied by six rows of pews, behind a short purple wall, awaiting their choir. The wall behind the stage is also purple. Mounted in the center of this wall is an ornate stained glass cross, framed in gold. The stained glass is faux as well — I’ve seen them turn the lights on within (simulated sunlight behind a simulated window).

Everything's purple...This is the monstrosity that is Harvest Church in Kansas City, Missouri. It’s a charismatic (Pentecostal) church where, no doubt, countless folks are “filled with the Spirit” every week.

Continue Reading...

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September 18, 2003

Temporary alleviation...

I’ve been afforded some time today. Our school is having an Open House tonight, so in the interum, while waiting for parents to arrive, I’ve been able to catch up with all of my Blog reading (and my Blogroll is becoming much too long). It’s been…heaven. I mean, I love to read. Blogs, as of late, have become just as important to me as books (which are enormously important in my life — almost to a fault). And, as my last post might have led you to believe, I have not had the time that I’ve needed for blogging lately.

So, for now at least, I am all caught up on my reading — if not my writing (which I’m hoping happens soon).

Thank you, fellow bloggers, for all of your wonderful words. They are truely inspiring.

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September 17, 2003

Blog guilt...

Where does it come from? I think that Blog guilt is one of the reasons why I didn’t write in my journal for such a long time (notice the large gap between entries from 2001-2003?). Of course, like any guilt, the guilt wears off after a while and I just don’t think about it too much. I don’t want this to happen with my current Weblog.

I like writing. And I like reading what others have written. It seems like life just gets so busy sometimes. Other things take higher positions on the priority list. Writing can even seem like a tedious task if I feel like other things in my life are more important.

Of course, certain occurrences make me feel like my Weblog isn’t a complete waste of time. Take one of the comments on this post for instance (the one right before mine, I mean). I had started a discussion on Death Cleaning, spurred on by a certain billboard that is posted around our fair city. A few people made their remarks and then the discussion sort of died. Then, on September 4th, a new comment was posted… Posted by the owner of the company in question!

So, whether I thought so or not, my Weblog does reach others than just the “true Weblog readers,” as I mentioned in my response to said comment. While I have had a difficult time at finding time to post my thoughts lately, at least this motivation to post is better than the motivation brought by guilt.

Hopefully, in the coming days, or weeks, or who-knows-when?, I will be back to my introspectively verbose self. Sans guilt.

Facesso libenter! (To accomplish willingly!) That’s what I need… Not guilt.

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September 14, 2003

Finding "Splendor"...

American SplendorI haven’t written much this week — nothing on this Weblog and hardly anything on others’. It’s kind of been a weird week; tiring, sad, shocking. But, that’s beside the point. To tell you the truth, I just really didn’t have anything to say.

splendor (splen-dor)
Pronunciation: ‘splen-d&r
Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English splendure, from Anglo-French splendur, from Latin splendor, from splendEre
Date: 15th century
1 a : great brightness or luster : BRILLIANCY b : MAGNIFICENCE, POMP
2 : something splendid
- splen-dor-ous also splen-drous / adjective

Everything this week was not.

Friday: Julianna and I went to see American Splendor (based on the comic book of the same name about Harvey Pekar‘s life) at Tivoli Cinemas. I could probably write a book on the way this movie made me feel. But I won’t…

What I do want to say is, simply, thank you, Harvey. That’s it.

If you’d like to know more about it and read some very insightful Blogs, by Harvey, Harvey’s wife, and their “adopted” daughter, check it all out for yourself.

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September 07, 2003

Only 365 days...

This weekend, we are staying at the in-laws’ again. They went out of town for a family event down in Virginia North Carolina (TS, 09/08/03) where they are commemorating a new memorial that has been built in honor of one of my mother-in-law’s great, great uncles. Thankfully, we haven’t had any occurrences like last time.

Stacie, Julianna, Tim, Bill, John - Longview Chapel, September 7, 2002Today, Sunday, September 7, 2003, marks one year of marriage for Julianna and me. Wow… So much has happened, yet it’s only been 365 days.

I have learned a lot in the past year. It’s amazing to me that our brains and souls can accept and reject and store and delete such a large amount of information (knowledge, wisdom, love, pain, joy, heartache, idiosyncrasies, etc.). And how much one knows another is never completely fulfullied until a spiritual marriage becomes the bond between the two.

A year seems like so long ago when I think about everything that has transpired, but when I look back upon the year as a physical unit of time and space, it doesn’t seem like such a long time at all. All I can see is love and gain, sans every single one of the “tough spots” — where learning about each other was more painful than I would have ever expected. In fact, when I reminisce on all of those “tough spots,” I can only see the good that came out of them; miracles that we fail to see until we reflect.

I love you, Julianna, and as I quietly placed the card next to you while you were sleeping this morning, your serene slumber said it all to me, “This is one of those reasons why you got married, Tim: to witness this display of beauty and peace every morning for the rest of your life.” And, like I wrote in the card that is awaiting your awakening eyes: the last year is but one drop in the ocean that is our life together.

Thank you for a wonderful first year, Julianna. If the following years are as good as this one was, I will die happy. The glorious fact is, I know they will be even better!

I thank our Lord every day for giving you to me.

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September 02, 2003

In support of the latest blogging craze...

I must stop for a moment to give props to a blogfriend who has just finished painting her bathroom. If you’ve ever painted a bathroom, or if you kept up with my saga, then you know what a task it is.

Congratulations Teri! Without trials like this, we would have no stories to tell.

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September 01, 2003

The other night, we got in our car...

...and headed down to Texas…

Friday, was our nephew, Corban’s second birthday. Today was Corban’s mom, Sarah’s birthday. And this was a three-day weekend… Well, we couldn’t miss a chance like that! So, Friday night, at 11:30pm, we jumped in our car and headed down to Duncanville, Texas (a suburb of Dallas). It was completely unplanned; a total secret to Luke and his family. This was going to be a surprise that wouldn’t soon be forgotten.

Continue Reading...

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