it was nice for a moment

January 28, 2009

Waking up to the ice and snow was exciting.  Even our dog was intrigued with the outdoor conditions.


Now that the frozen stuff is beginning to melt – I’m not so impressed with the landscape (even on a perfect day – there isn’t much inspiring about a gravel parking lot – but you get the idea).


I’d much rather relax in a place like this:



What’s your favorite destination?  Do you prefer the snow or the sunshine?

A Little Help – Please

January 19, 2009

You’ll remember Chester.  


He’s our sweet dog – saved from the dark confines of the local animal shelter.  He’s been a great companion.  He’s alway eager to greet us when we return from our day at work, a morning at church, or a dinner out.  I even took him to Montgomery Bell for a run recently.  Other than a few minor mishaps with the leash – he ran the trail with ease.  Yesterday, as the temperature rose above freezing – I decided to join Chester for a game of fetch.

Here’s the ultra-cool, glow-in-the-dark ball that we used.


And here is Chester’s response.  Webster defines fetch: to go or come after and bring or take back.  


We need to work on the “bring or take back” part.  He’s fast.  He’s quick to close the gap between himself and the ball.  It’s the returning the ball to me component that we’re lacking.  Any ideas?  Do you have to teach a retriever to retrieve.  Or is our dog a little slow?  A little help – please.

The Basics

January 12, 2009

It was a disappointing weekend for me.  The Titans, Panthers, and UNC Men’s Basketball team all walked away from their respective match-ups in defeat.  For the Titans and Panthers it’s the end of the road – at least for this season.  For UNC – after a strong November/December effort – they now start conference play at 0-2.  Not a good start.  Especially given the notion by some sports commentators that Carolina could go undefeated this season.  During last night’s loss to Wake Forest I caught/heard something curious that the coach shared from the bench.  Reading the lips of a head coach can be a little risky.  They can speak some harsh things.  However, on this particular occasion his words were “box out.”  His team was 13-0 going into the game with UNC.  They are a young team but certainly talented.  They’ve drilled.  They’ve practiced and scrimmaged.  They’ve watched tapes of their own play and that of others.  They’ve gone head-to-head with many opponents.  These guys know the drill.  They understand the game.  Their coach gets paid plenty of money.  The players are on scholarship.  It’s a tight game.  A worthy rival is on the ropes.  And what instruction does he provide?  BOX OUT.  I could have told you that.  I tried out for my middle school team.  I got cut during the first round.  I sat the bench in a church league.  I’m not much of a player.  But I understand the need to box out – to hold a position – to put my body between the basket/ball and another player – to deny the rebound to my opponent.  It’s basic stuff.  A fundamental of the game.  A well-coached elementary school kid can understand and execute the effort.  So all this got me to thinking.  Why do we tend to overcomplicate things?  Why does life need to be so convoluted, hectic, and out of sorts?  Are there some basics to which we can return?  Can we simplify?  Can we strip our routines of the clutter and anxiety?  Can we seek first His kingdom and trust God with the rest?  What do you think?           

A Fresh Pursuit

January 9, 2009

As I’ve entered 2009 – I’m once again making the effort to read through the bible before year’s end.  I started a new reading schedule/plan two years ago and never finished it.  I’m hopeful that this year will be different.  Today’s reading took me to Romans and the Psalms.  Here are a couple of passages with which I took some extra time to process…

Love must be sincere.  Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.  Be devoted to one another before yourselves.  Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.  Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.  Share with God’s people in need.  Practice hospitality.  Live in harmony with one another.  Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position.  Do not be conceited.  Romans 12:9-13, 16

The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul.  The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple.  The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart.  The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes.  Psalm 19:7-8

~1200 Miles Later

January 5, 2009

I’ve been on a writing sabbatical of sorts.  To sum up my absence…