Archive for the ‘Life’ Category

In about an hour Sarah and I are going to hit the road for a long drive up the Pacific coast, eventually landing in Portland, the “City of Roses.” I’m very excited because not only do I love the coast (and, well, road trips in general), but Portland is one of my favorite cities in the world. Here are a few things I’m looking forward to:


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April is going to be a busy and exciting month for me. I’ve got plenty of stuff lined up that should provide plenty of blogging material:

Tonight – I’m going to opening night of the Modesto Nuts season, which should be fun because even though it’s only minor league, it’s still baseball.

April 12 – I’m going to the Love Won Out conference, which you can read about in the post just below this.

April 17 – I’m traveling to Fresno Pacific to see author and speaker Donald Miller speak at a ministry forum. He’s one of my favorite authors, and I’m really looking forward to this.

April 19 – I’m spending half of my work day at a booth for Earth Day, letting people know about how car washes save water

April 22-29 – Sarah and I are going on vacation to the great city of Portland via the Pacific Coast, which will may or may not include a stay at a literary-themed hotel, a visit to the Tilamook Cheese Factory, a hike on Mt. St. Helens, a drink at McMenamins, and several book purchases at Powells.

Writing News – I’m continuing to edit and rewrite significant portions of my novel, and I’m anticipating having draft 2 done by this month, or at least may. I have already bugged several of you about reading through it and offering criticism/feedback, but if I haven’t and you’re willing to give honest and constructive feedback, let me know.

Also, I was contacted by the editor of Professional Carwashing & Detailing Magazine about submitting a “What it’s like to work at a car wash” editorial. Not only is it a unique way to incorporate two things I’m well versed in, but it will be my first national magazine, although I’ll admit you won’t see it in the magazine rack at your local grocery store.

I’m getting a lot more jobs on a regular basis with the local magazines I’ve been contributing to, so that’s been working out pretty well.

Finally, I’m going to be a participating blogger in a blog designed to be a discussion about books on theology and Christianity. The details are still in the works, but it will be kind of like an online book club. The first book we’re going to tackle is Mark Driscoll and Gerry Breshears’s Vintage Jesus: Timeless Answers to Timely Questions. Like I said, details are still sketchy, but you can read about the concept at AJ Vanderhorst’s blog here and here.

Oh, and I’ve been reading quite a bit, so I will be posting 25 word reviews of the books I’ve read, as well as an extended review of Shane Claiborne‘s Jesus For President.

Like I said – a lot of stiff going on in April. Should be exciting.

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I was on iTunes the other day updating some of my podcasts, and I uncovered something I never new existed – iTunes U

What is iTunes U?  It’s short for iTunes University, and basically it is audiofiles of classes from various universities that can be downloaded and “taken” at no cost to the “student.”  Of course, there’s no “degree” either.  But the fact is I love learning, and this may be a good way to save some cash somewhere down the road if I ever (God forbid!) wanted to go back to school. 

They have classes from a lot of big schools, including UC Berkeley, USC, Duke, Yale, Stanford, and tons of others .

So, here are my “courses” this “semester,” as I work towards my Frankenstein “degree,” which I am tenatively calling Theology, Etc. :

  • Gospels and Acts (Reformed Theological Seminary)
  • Biblical Hermeneutics (Concordia Seminary)
  • Historical Jesus (Stanford)
  • Issues in Foreign Policy After 9/11 (Berkeley)
  • Systematic Theology I (Reformed Theological Seminary)
  • Systematic Theology II (Reformed Theological Seminary)
  • Systematic Theology III (Reformed Theological Seminary)
  • New Testament Colloquium – How Should We Write About Jesus? (Fuller Theological Seminary)
  • Faith and Foreign Policy Forum (Gordon College)
  • Suffering, Solidarity and the Cross (Duke)

Lord knows how long it will actually take to complete my semester, but when I do, I’ll have plenty more to choose from.

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Some Random Thoughts

Here are some random things I have been thinking about lately:

  • Modesto needs a Star Wars themed neighborhood.  I don’t mean with geeky life-size figurines on the corner and R2D2 mailboxes, but at least themed street names.  It makes sense to honor Modesto-native George Lucas and his best known movies.  Plus how fun would it be to give directions to your house: “What you’re gonna do is take a left on Hoth, go past Wookie Ct. and then turn right on Jabba the Hut. It’s on the left hand side, on the corner of Jabba the Hut and Vader.”
  • Why is it some sports teams get to waive their right to use their hometown in their names?  Traditionally, you use the city name (San Francisco Giants, Miami Dolphins, Chicago Bulls, etc.), but some teams, and it seems like a lot of newer teams, are either adopting state names (Arizona Cardinals, Tennessee Titans, Texas Rangers, etc.), or even using geographical areas and strange nicknames (New England Patriots and Golden State Warriors, for example).  I know there’s no rule saying what you have to name your team, but I think sports teams need to show some love to the cities that host them.
  • We have a world map shower curtain, so I get to examine the globe every time I do my business, and the map, especially the bottom part, is littered with islands that belong to countries that are nowhere near them, such as England, France and the United States.  Now I know all about colonialism, but as I look into these islands (which include Reunion, South Shetland Islands, South Sandwich Islands, Kerguelen, and the Prince Edward Islands), many of them seem to offer no real advantage to the countries that occupy them.  Most of them have no native inhabitents, and are almost uninhabitable anyway.  Some of them are used as research centers for a lot of countries, and nothing more.  So why the obsession with owning them, with being the one country that is privileged to not live there?

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Personal DNA

So I took this personality test that a few of my blogging buddies have taken. It says that I am a Generous Visionary. Sounds pretty cool to me, and somewhat accurate. Read the full report here and let me know how accurate you think it is.


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I have been meaning to write a few wedding-related blogs since I got back from our honeymoon, but I ended up using most of my writing time on this, and on an article I had due today.  But that is over and done with.

So, the wedding was AMAZING!  I don’t know any other way to say it.  We had a bout 300 of our friends and family in attendance, and I managed to avoid getting nervous until i got a glimpse of exactly what 300 people looks like.  But God soothed by nerves and I forgot that anyone else was even in the room when Sarah started walking down the aisle.  And wow – she was absolutely stunning!  The ceremony was awesome.  We did communion and had our fathers pray over us.  It was a very spiritual moment.

Altogether, the wedding was over pretty quickly.  The reception was a blur.  We tried our best to thank as many people as we could, but since we were up against the clock so the Church could set up for Saturday night service, things moved pretty quickly.   We played a fun game involving shoes, had a dance, shoved cake in each other’s faces, and before we knew it, we were gone.

A lot of people have told us that our wedding was beautiful, that we both looked good, and that the shoe game was the funnest thing they’d ever seen at a reception.  But perhaps the best compliment that we’ve received from several people is that they could feel God’s presence in the room.  That to me is awesome.  The idea of a marriage is to be a little microcosm of God’s love for his church, and we tried the best we could to make sure God was honored during the ceremony, and to know that we succeeded, and that people could feel God in the audience smiling is the best compliment we could receive.

As for the web cast, we had  22 people watching it during the ceremony!  How awesome is that!  I took off the feed from the website because it’s our photographer’s feed he uses for all of his broadcast, but as soon as I can I will post the archived video for anyone who wants to relive the magic.

Thank you to all of our friends and family that have loved and supported us during our relationship, helped us spiritually, fiscally, and emotionally during the wedding planning, and all of our friends and family that came to support our union.

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You Can Watch My Wedding Live!

So Jerad, our wonderful wedding photographer, is going to attempt a first – he is going to broadcast our wedding live over the internet! All you have to do is come to the website and check out the blog. There will be a new blog entry at about 6am on November 17th with the live feed for you to watch. There ceremony will begin at about 10:30am. I will be deleting the post shortly after.

Thanks for tuning in!

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