- I like zoos. They're a motley collection of widely diverse creatures condensed into a relatively small area. They remind me of congregations of God's people. :)
- I am incredibly grateful for air-conditioning and mobile vehicles.
- I love watching children become excited because they're learning and seeing something new. There must be many good reasons why Jesus wants us to be like them in attitude.
- I wonder about how we might treat others like we would treat a zoo - by casually walking by an exhibit, briefly glancing at the plaque, snapping a shot or two, and moving on to the next one. People are not exhibits. They cannot be understood or sized up quickly, anymore than an Asian Elephant can be understood by a casual glance.
- Perhaps I like petting zoos for an opposite reason - you can get *into* the pen and interact with the animal. You can see, feel, and smell what's a goat's really like. We should live our lives like we're going to a petting zoo - getting involved with people to see what they're really like.
- Reading Job and noticing how many times the characters will leap to conclusions.
- Preaching tomorrow on "Musical Worship in the Bible" and meeting new brethren here in Tulsa!
- I'm in love with my wife and I'm so glad I'm married to her.
Have a blessed Lord's day tomorrow.
I suppose it’s rather disingenuous to “lurk” and not give an account of myself once and awhile. Well, once again I find myself overwhelmed with good fortune and blessings from Him. The Father has entrusted the future of a godly woman into my care. He's provided me with a secure financial situation which allows us to marry as soon as Jen finishes school. He's allowed me to pursue my cherished dream of spending my life preaching his gospel to the saved and the lost. Since Jan., I’ve been with the brethren here in Fayetteville, AR, working with the church here at Old Wire Road. We’ll be here for the next two years, Lord willing. Many of the brethren “have a mind to work” here and it’s been refreshing to get new perspectives on evangelism. Since Fayetteville is home to the University of Arkansas, the population of the city is pretty diverse and I’m sensing lots of opportunities. The folks at the local Taco Bell are open to Bible studying at any rate!
The opportunity to present the word to others on a regular basis has caused me to dig even deeper into the Word myself and I'm slowly discovering the pleasure of connecting the ideas and stories of the Bible in ways I've never noticed before. To use an analogy... it's like the process of figuring out a word search puzzle. If you're first learning to read and you encounter the puzzle it's an exhilarating experience to recognize an "a," a "t," and a "u" in what is seemingly a random grouping of letters. But what gets *really* fun is when you start realizing that those cool letters actually form words. Actually, the letters you've been staring at for a long time are put in a certain order for a reason. Actually, the whole thing is an exciting and complicated puzzle which becomes easier to decipher as you become more adept at reading and recognizing larger words. :) I believe the Bible is structured in a similar way.
Random Recollection: I recently went to Region's bank to apply for a credit card and the man who helped me was named "Jeff Swindle." Wow. Talk about irony! Upon seeing his name plate I immediately felt a mixture of mirth and sympathy for him... imagining the countless snickers and snide comments from customers and people who know where he works. Of course, maybe he chose a banking career because he has a great sense of humor. :)
May God bless your work for Him in the coming months!
For those of you who don't know yet, I have the great privilege of announcing that Jennifer Diestelkamp agreed to become my wife last Saturday. At the moment, we are planning to be married in Pontiac, IL (Jen's hometown), on the forth weekend of May.
Needless to say, we are both extremely excited and a feeling a little surreal about the whole experience. :)
Love to you all,
I recently saw a Denny's message board/sign on the way to worship which read like so: "SIGN BROKEN" "MESSAGE INSIDE."
Before the life update... I'll provide some ramblings on why I don't post very often, which you are welcome to skip. :)
As anyone connected with this blog will already know, I am obviously not a big believer in using pleonast as a outlet for daily creative journalistic impulses, as my infrequent posting record will attest. One of the reasons for this is simply that I would be tempted to stay mesmorized by a computer screen for gargantuan periods of the day. On the occasions when I do post, I inevitably refresh my blog screen constantly throughout a 48 hr. period - desperately searching for one to two sentence comments, which are (no offense) usually not worth all the time and energy I expend looking for them. In this flurry of pleonast activity, I will also frequent the blogs of 98% of my friends and post on them... hoping that they will be inspired to post on mine. I consider all this a major misuse of time - especially if done on a frequent basis. For those of you who can post daily, or on some kind of a regular basis, and can still be productive with your lives and not allow your computer to consume your existence - I admire your self-control. :)
Another reason for my lackluster pleo posting involves my increasing annoyance with internet communication. When I'm trying to communicate my thoughts in an understandable way - I (naturally) hate it when people misunderstand me. Because the internet does not communicate facial features, tone of voice, or other verbal cues very well, confusion occurs much more easily. Granted, some of these problems are contained in written communication as well - which is part of the reason I'm not prolific in my letter writing. (The other part of it is I'm just rather lazy when it comes to investing time and effort into written communication. :)) Getting back to misunderstanding... sometimes even my closest friends find themselves scratching their heads about a statement that I thought would be perfectly clear and vice versa. This is not ideal. I'm not denying the atvantages and conveniences of internet communication, but I think it is too often overused, abused, and turned into a shallow time-wasting device. I freely admit that I have used it that way in the past, but I'm hoping to curb these habits in the future.
Since I occasionally look at the blogs of others, however, I feel compelled to write on mine once and awhile to let interested readers know what is happening in my life and to reciprocate information that I receive through means of pleo. Especially if those readers don't know me very well or haven't been recently updated by me in person or on the phone.
Anyway, enough pleo analysis. All that to say... my infrequent posting is not just the result of laziness. There are a few other reasons. :)
My life is full and rich. I'm blessed with the friendship of many admirable people, and the ability, funds, and time to see some of them over the course of this winter break. I just returned from an excursion to northern IL - where I was able to spend a week with my best friend/girlfriend (Jennifer Diestelkamp) and her family. During that time we attended a prototype FC booster club winter camp together, where I saw a significant ammount of snow for the first time in eight years. It was also a joy to meet and rub elbows with many other Christians from that general area and to profit from their company.
I'm now back in TX for today, but will be on the road heading back for another semester at USF (University of South Florida). The completion of my Bachelor's in Communications is happily looming on the horizon and I will graduate in Dec. of this year with my last college degree in hand, Lord willing. In the meantime, I am enjoying the experiences of an apartment and the challenges of dealing with a major University. I'm also getting passionate about an ongoing Bible study with one of my former communications classmates, which seems to be going well (though we've only met once). So, all in all, my life beginning in the next couple of weeks is going to be about as busy as a toy shop on Christmas Eve, but I'm looking forward to all of the opportunities to grow.
May God bless you all in the coming year.