RSS Feed (xml)

Powered By

Skin Design:
Free Blogger Skins

Powered by Blogger

Friday, January 30, 2009

25 Random Things About Me

Crazy phenomenon spreading through Facebook - 25 Random Things About Me notes - finally caught up with me. I was tagged by a few friends so, here it is. I wonder how long this will take.

25. I don't read all 25 things that most people write when I see this note...maybe the first 5-7 and then the last 2-3. I'd be shocked if you make it through mine and totally not offended if you don't.

24. My favorite talk radio show is The Jim Rome Show.

23. My first car was a light blue, inline 6-cylinder 1972 Chevy Nova. It had about 100 blue tacks to keep the ceiling liner from falling down.

22. I once threw a Honda Civic into reverse - on accident - going about 25 mph. I was in high school. I blame it on not having a fully developed frontal lobe. Yeah. That's it.

21. I have pooped my pants.

20. Since the 6th grade, I have never knowingly used chemicals/hair products other than shampoo in my hair.

19. I struggle to pray and talking to God.

18. I love to leave random objects around the homes of friends when we go to hang with them (right, Maslos and Ungers?).

17. Once had a doctor that giggled when he said the word penis.

16. I love to dance.

15. I have more stuff than I care to admit from my past that trips me up as an adult.

14. Was asked to try out for my high school baseball team three straight years by the varsity coach and never did. I regret it to this day.

13. Loves to feed and watch birds in his backyard. I got that from my mom and mother-in-law.

12. I takes me forever to buy books. They have to be in perfect bent edges, smudges or imperfections. A bit of my OCD coming out.

11. I think to myself how #12 translates into my relationships.

10. Wonders at least once a day if I will ever be back in full-time vocational ministry again.

9. Is discovering that he really likes to take pictures. I really need to take a photography class. DL and Mickey are my heroes.

8. My favorite medium of art is wood followed by glass then clay.

7. Is very prideful which comes out in a lack of teachability.

6. I love to watch the movie Can't Buy Me Love on a rainy day.

5. Admits he can live life without cable TV (but still working on letting go of ESPN).

4. Would love to speak Spanish fluently (took 4 years of Latin in high school. Can I get a redo?).

3. I am not ticklish, but Kelly, Sarah, and Parker totally are.

2. Parker inspires me to be more generous. Sarah teaches me to be more thoughtful. And Kelly, what doesn't she teach me? But, at the end of the day, she models for me how to be less selfish and more humble in all that I am and all that I do. Thank you, Jesus.

1. Loves to have his head scratched more than any other physical activity. Well, almost any...haha!

Bonus: One of the above 25 things is not random at all, in fact, it's not even true. Which one is it?

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Snow Day Snapshots

We've been out of school the last couple of days due to ice and snow. What is it about snow days that are so awesome even for adults? Kelly even got to stay home one of the days because of a level 2 emergency (oooo...scary!). We went for a couple of hikes through the woods, orchard and creek that are right next to our backyard. It was tons of fun and really pretty. So for all you friends, family and complete strangers who live where there is little to no chance of snow, gaze at the wonder that is a snow day...

Xmas Karaoke - YMCA Style

This is classic. My brothers Bret, Don, Matt, and Blane rock out the classic minus the crazy costumes, bad mustaches, and 70s side effects. Very funny stuff! I miss Christmas.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Sledding Location Database

We are getting hammered with snow here in SW Ohio. It's really awesome! The kids are hounding us to go sledding.

Maybe your kids or your inner kid is hounding you, too, if you live in a place that has gotten, is getting, or will get snow. And since I know of only one sledding hill near where I live, I decided to look up to see if there might be some other sledding hills in the area.

With a little research I came across this little web site dedicated to helping sledding enthusiasts find that perfect sled track for that snowy You can look up by state or Canadian province, or territory and then by state county.

So if you are in the mood and have the motivation to get out and go fast, look no further. This is the place for you, your kids, and/or your youth ministry. Have fun!

Monday, January 26, 2009

I'm Dreaming of a Karaoke Christmas

This Christmas was the last Christmas that the Rings family - Mom, Dad, Bret, Blane, Matt, Marcie, and Me plus all our families - will be together for a long time. My brother is being stationed in Okinawa with the Navy and my nephew, Alex, is going to college in Australia at Hillsong. Kinda cool, but kinda sad all at the same time.

So this Christmas when we were all together, my sister and I organized a competition amongst the family divided into teams of two. We had cornhole, blackjack table, Apples to Apples, puzzles, Wii bowling, and then to finish it off we had a huge karaoke battle. It was hysterical. So for the next week or so I'll be posting the videos from that.

Not great quality, but you'll see the fun we had. Peace and late!

Sarah, Mesa, and Toni with Matt on vocals:

Bret and Sarah with Matt on vocals:

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Prayer Of The Weak

Give us grace, O Lord, to answer readily the call of our Savior Jesus Christ and proclaim to all people the Good News of his salvation, that we and the whole world may perceive the glory of his marvelous works; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Life Is for Sharing

What a great and true line. Life is for sharing. Sharing love. Sharing friendship. Sharing knowledge. Sharing stories. Sharing stuff. Sharing burdens. Sharing struggles. Sharing dreams. Sharing hope. Sharing Jesus. And the list could go on and on.

The early church was really good at (Acts 2:43-47). Paul spent his life doing it (1 Thessalonians 2:8). Mother Theresa embodied it.

I wonder how I am doing at sharing my life with those around me. How am I doing at sharing my heart and soul with Kelly. Am I letting her into the deep places of my life?

I wonder how am I doing at sharing my life with my kids. Do I share my time? Do I share the very best energy that I have? Do I share with them both fun/silly and focused/serious?

I wonder how am I doing at sharing with other family and friends. Am I honest when I share? Do share when it makes me appear more spiritual or vulnerable? How about carving out time to share some time/space that is significant to growing as a man and caring for others around me?

This sharing is both intentional and spontaneous. I can plan it, but must also be open for the unexpected times to share time, energy, money, stuff, and love. I can get it on the calendar, but be ready for when God directs something unexpected my way so as to follow Him and what he might be doing in that very moment.

Sharing life is easy for some and difficult for others. It can be both fun and life-giving as well as hard and life-draining. But in the end we gotta do it for in the sharing of life, our life, His life, we gain so much more.

How will it start for you today? Big? Small? With a spouse, child, neighbor, or stranger? I don't know but do it! May you find inspiration from this cool little viral marketing video from T-Mobile. I know I did.

Monday, January 19, 2009

MLK Day - What More...

...In the Name of Love.

U2's anthem dedicated to Martin Luther King Jr. A song soaring with honor, hope, and call to continue the march for justice, equality, and love. I had not seen the original video in years. You can check it out here. But instead I leave to listen and watch the Rattle and Hum video of Pride (In the Name of Love) version. Awesome.

You can also check out Wikipedia's little entry about the song here. Very interesting, especially the piece about originally being intended to be about Ronald Reagan's pride in the American military power.

One man come in the name of love
One man come and go.
One man come he to justify
One man to overthrow.

In the name of love
What more in the name of love.
In the name of love
What more in the name of love.

One man caught on a barbed wire fence
One man he resist
One man washed up on an empty beach
One man betrayed with a kiss.

In the name of love
What more in the name of love.
In the name of love
What more in the name of love.

Early morning, April four
Shot rings out in the Memphis sky.
Free at last, they took your life
They could not take your pride.

In the name of love
What more in the name of love.
In the name of love
What more in the name of love.

In the name of love
What more in the name of love.
In the name of love
What more in the name of love.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Prayer Of The Weak

Almighty God, whose Son our Savior Jesus Christ is the light of the world: Grant that your people, illumined by your Word and Sacraments, may shine with the radiance of Christ's glory, that he may be known, worshipped, and obeyed to the ends of the earth; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

9 Most Popular Websites Quiz

Think you know the net? So do/did I. However, the quiz tells me otherwise. I got only 4 out of 9 right. Should have gotten at least 2 and maybe three more if I had my thinking cap on.

Take the quiz here. I know you can do better than me!

(bu to Mental Floss Blog)

Happy Bday, Baby!

On this day 37 years ago, my wife was born with temperatures much as they are today (-2 in '72. Oddly enough it was 65 degrees when she went home from the hospital a couple of days later!). Words can't do justice who this woman is, what a wife she is, and how moms don't get any better than her.

She is a loving and serving friend. She has a listening ear and a discerning heart. Her ability to make people feel comfortable to be themselves as they spend time together is extraordinary. Her ability to be thoughtful and insightful one moment and the rough-in-tumble the next is fun to be around (right, Andy? PUNCH!).

I thank God for her every chance I get. I am one blessed dude that God crossed our paths at Bowling Green State University and humbled that this ah-maz-ing woman picked me to share the rest of her life with in marriage.


So happy birthday, babe! Thanks for moving up in age so that I don't have to feel so old now! You are the best! I love life with you all the more.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

A Product of Medical Modernity

I am so a product of my culture and context.

For the last couple of days I have been praying for friend and his family about some medical issue they have been dealing with. It is the kind of issues that no husband, wife, dad, or mom wants to ever go through. Ever. This fear of loss. The fear of the unknown. It's scary and overwhelming not knowing what is God is up to and where this is leading. I can't imagine how tough it was.

We were privileged to be on their short list of people that they shared this tough time with in order to pray and support them. It is a great honor to stand in the gap for people who during times like these have a hard time praying themselves (even thought they know God loves them and is with them). So we prayed. And we waited. And waited and waited. Just a few days praying for friends going through something like this can feel like few weeks.

Finally, we got the call. Great news! Our prayer for our big God to intervene in slightest of ways and smallest of chances (given doctor diagnosis) was answered! Woohoo! Yea, God!

And literally the first words out of my mouth were, "So what's the medical explaination behind the good news?" How do the doctors explain this? What do the tests tell us?

So much for praying when the first inclination after hearing the good news is to write God out of the equation. Ugh.

How quick I am at praying and, yet, how quick I am at attributing the miracle to doctors, medicine, misdiagnosis, or medical procedures, instead of the intervention of a gracious, loving, omnipotent God who heard our prayers and responded out of lovingkindess with mercy and compassion.

What if there were simply no expectation that at one moment the once dire and hopeless condition was miraculously changed because the God of the universe is still in the miracle business that responds to faith and acts to inspire faith? What if?

There may be all sort of logical medical reason which are miraculous in and of themselves given the wisdom that God gives medical researchers and doctors whom He uses to heal people. But maybe, just maybe, this was one time where one moment there was no hope and then instantly in the next there was healing. All because that is who He is. That is what He is about. That is what He still does.

Oh, me of little faith.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Be Careful Out There

Thought this was fairly appropriate given today's weather and eating establishments specifically in Ohio and generally from the Midwest to the Northeast.

(bu to Indexed)

Monday, January 12, 2009

Great Man. Great Leader. Great Coach.

In a normal voice, Tony Dungy would say to his players at the beginning of training camp, "Men, listen closely. This is the loudest you will ever hear me speak when I address you or the team." No yelling. No tantrums. No hype. No ego. Just honor, respect, and studly leadership.

As Dan Wetzel wrote in his column on Yahoo! Sports, "Monday Dungy’s decision was the NFL’s loss, perhaps everyone else’s gain" At-risk youth. Convicts and prisoners. His family. Various other organizations and ministries that are bringing heaven to earth. The Colts will miss you. Indianapolis will miss you. The NFL will miss you. Now those who really need you and want you welcome you their world with open arms.

May your salt and light continue to bless, encourage, empower, and lead others to the place and person of faith, hope, and love that gives you strength.

Yahoo! Sports column here.

ESPN column here.

CNN/SI column here.

Movie Trailer Version of One Truth and a Lie: Wolverine and Thudercats

I love movies. I really love movie trailers...something about building anticipation gets me all jacked and fired up. So here is one real movie trailer that gets me pumped for the real deal: X-Men Origins - Wolverine.

Here is one fake movie trailer that gets me stoked about the potential for the movie version of one of the great Saturday morning cartoons of all time: Thundercats.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Prayer Of The Weak

Father in heaven, who at the baptism of Jesus in the River Jordan proclaimed him your beloved Son and anointed him with the Holy Spirit: Grant that all who are baptized into his Name may keep the covenant they have made, and boldly confess him as Lord and Savior; who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Open Source Churches

Or What Have We Done To Pastors and Ourselves.

Disclaimer: I was a pastor for 12+ years. Loved it most of the time. I still wonder if God will have me back in that place one day in the future.

With that being said, I've been thinking a lately about the position of "pastor". When did it start? What was the original job decription? Why was the position created? How has it changed? What is it now? Lots of stuff out there that is biblical, cultural, and organizational...some really good stuff.

I've seen some really good pastors (or at least what I consider good). I've seen some average ones (or at least what I consider avg). And I've seen some bad ones (or at least what I consider bad). I wonder why that is. Is it character? Skill? Training? Education? Mentoring/relationship? Wiring? Expectation? Probably all of the above.

But one thing I'm noticing, is that it is becoming more professional. And I'm not sure that is a good thing. It gives pastors big egos: it's all about me. It enables lay people to leave the work of the Church to the few, the special, the spiritual elite: I don't have to step up-someone else will do it-I don't have the expertise to do it-I don't have the power to do it. It sets the Church up for an "I declare sayeth the pastor and you doeth follows the lay person" kinda culture. I'm not sure that's healthy. In fact I know it's not.

I'm hoping to see more humble, collaborative, open source ministry (see open source software) minded church influencers. It's a bit idealistic, but it seems to me that's kinda the example that God gives us in the pages of the New Testament. I agree that we live in a different time, place, culture, and orgainzational context, but I still think there are some foundational issues that need to make up the fabric of our churches, para-churches, missions organizations and spiritual institutions. We need everyone to speak into, be apart of, and make loving, kingdom oriented ministry happen.

We need to whole Body to speak into the life and ministry of the church freely, powerfully, and humbly. Once She has spoken then we need to do. Try and make it fit within the mission, vision, and values. It's about giving people ownership of the kingdom endeavor that we are all apart of-good, bad, ugly, success or failure.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Prayer Of The Weak

O God, who wonderfully created, and yet more wonderfully restored, the dignity of human nature: Grant that we may share the divine life of him who humbled himself to share our humanity, your Son Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Thursday, January 01, 2009

My Prayer for the New Year

This is my prayer for me, my family, friends, the Church, and those trying to figure out this thing called life. It's Lay It Down by Matt Maher. No matter the season. No matter who, what or why something intersects our path and pilgrimage, may you and I have this attitude: lay it down. Lay anything and everything down at the feet of Him who knows you and loves you no matter what. May we find hope and courage in that moment, in that act. From that may we experience the hands of grace that change everything. May it start today on New Year's day.

Everything I am
Everything I long to be
I lay it down at Your feet

Everything I am
Everything I long to be
I lay it down at Your feet

I lay it down
I lay it down
I lay it down
At Your feet

Oh pearl of greatest price
No act of sacrifice
Can match the gift of life I find within Your gaze
Oh, what a sweet exchange
I die to rise again
Lifted up from the grave into Your hands of grace

New Year's Day

I give you today the simple version/lyrics of one of my favorite U2 songs of all time: New Year's Day. And the question is: Will this be true of you and me this year? Will nothing change? Will I/we be not be more loving? More compassionate? Less busy? Less Anxious? Quicker to pursue justice? Slower to be angry? More diligent to pursue a godly life and lead others to Jesus? Less consumed with materialism and ignorance? More Jesus and less me?

All is quiet on new years day,
A world in white gets underway,
And I want to be with you,
Be with you night and day.
Nothing changes on new years day.
I will be with you again.
I will be with you again.

Under a blood-red sky
A crowd has gathered in black and white.
Arms entwined, the chosen few,
Newspapers say, it says its true.
And we can break through,
Though torn in two we can be one.
I will begin again, I will begin again.
Oh and maybe the time is right,
Oh maybe tonight.
I will be with you again.
I will be with you again.

And so we are told this is the golden age
And gold is the reason for the wars we wage.
Though I want to be with you,
To be with you night and day.
Nothing changes on new years day.

The Hunger Site

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Locations of visitors to this page Add to Technorati Favorites