Wednesday, December 29, 2004


On Monday morning Mandy and I packed up, loaded the car, and left for Cambria. One mile later, we decided to turn around and not go.

I was coming down with a cold of some sorts, and that, coupled with the rainy weather, made our decision for us. I'm glad we stayed here. Two days later and I'm still sick, though we've had a really good time together. I hate that I'm sick, but I guess it's a good time for it.


The death toll continues to rise in S. East Asia, from 20,000, to 50,000, and today to 77,000. They say it will probably end up being around 100,000. What do you do with this kind of death? What should my response be? I've been thinking about September 11 lately. I was glued to my tv for three days. All of America was. Yet with this...I must admit that I didn't care quite as much. It didn't hit me as hard. Why is that?

God, change my worldview. Give me a heart for all of the peoples in this world. Give me your heart for your people. Show me how to respond.

Monday, December 27, 2004

I need a vacation

Christmas has come and gone. Mandy and I spent this Christmas here in California for the first time. It was quite nice. The last few weeks have been very busy. We had three services on Christmas Eve at Hillside, and then two this morning. Getting ready for these has been very time consuming.

Tomorrow morning Mandy, Jack and I are headed down to Cambria for three nights. We're going to visit Hearst Castle on Tuesday. We are both so ready for this retreat. We need it.

Hopefully, after I get back I'll be in better spirits for blogging!

Monday, November 29, 2004

Reflections on a snowy Thanksgiving

This Thanksgiving Mandy and I went up to South Lake Tahoe with some friends. All of us live pretty far from our families, so we became family for one another. We arrived on Wednesday and left on Saturday. We played lots of games (Cranium, Balderdash, poker and foosball), went to a casino (where I lost $14), ate a lot of food, and had some good worship and prayer time.

The adventure really began on Saturday morning, when we got ready to leave. It started snowing sometime during the night, and continued as we were leaving. We finally decided that it was best to just stay where we were. (The fact that I got a flat tire added to this wisdom). It quit snowing around 3:00, then the owner and his friends showed up. We saw this as a sign that we had overstayed our welcome. We left a little before 5:00. Four hours later we had gone 20 miles! Good times!

Anyway, a few hours after that we made it home. I was ready to get off that mountain. Aside from the long drive, it was a great trip.

Friday, November 05, 2004

More Eldredge

The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
because the Lord has anointed me
to preach good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners.


John Eldredge paraphrases it this way:

God has sent me on a mission.
I have some great news for you.
God has sent me to restore and release something.
And that something is you.
I am here to give you back your heart and set you free.

Hot Sauce Evangelism

Stumbled across this a few days ago. Good read.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004


It's basketball time again. Here are a few websites I like to peruse when I have a chance...


Solomon's Porch

I got my latest issue of Cutting Edge, Vineyard's church planting magazine, in the mail today. There is a good article about a church in Minneapolis called Solomon's Porch. The following are a few quotes I thought were pretty good. The magazine's not online yet. When it is, I'll add a link to it.

The congregation, which was planted five years ago, today numbers 300 and is thoughtfully engaged in what they call “experiments” in being a “holistic, missional, Christian community”.

Community is not the endgame for me. The endgame is for us to become a people who are able to live out the aspirations and hopes and dreams of God in the world. I don’t think that’s possible to do without being in community with each other, but “community” is not the goal. We think it’s essential for people to live harmoniously with each other and with God, but that’s not the end of the game.

In terms of living in missional ways together, we talk about wanting to become “kingdom of God horticulturalists” – people who look around and can see the kingdom of God growing in a variety of species, recognize it, describe it, participate with it, and join in helping it grow. Part of that means asking ourselves, “How have we been brought together? What gifts and abilities, opportunities, desires and skills do we have that God has orchestrated for some particular way in this world?”

Our primary supposition to everything we do is figuring out how we live as a good neighbor. Living as a good neighbor is, for me, the missional call of God embodied at a grassroots level in a people.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

fighting porn

Some may be offended by this...actually, only Jason reads my blog, so, Jason, hope you're not offended. is a website devoted to helping people who struggle with pornography. A recent survey taken at a Promise Keepers event showed that 50% of the men there had looked at pornography the week before!

Here are a couple of clips from their site:

Why The Pete the Porno Puppet Campaign?

The sad truth is that with easy access to pornography, children are more susceptible to obtaining it. As adults we have a responsibility to protect children and do whatever we can to make sure pornography does not end up in the hands of kids. XXXchurch's challenge to parents is to really think about what you are doing. Are you helping this problem or are you contributing to it? Do you have pornography in your house? Do you have porn on your computer, in your drawers, or playing on your TV? Do you really think your kids won't find it? XXXchurch is committed to safeguarding minors and are calling upon parents and adults to get rid of your porn stash. Your adult product has become your kid’s problem so say NO to pornography for Pete's sake! PORN PRODUCER “Jimmy D” has filmed, edited, and produced this commercial for free.

30-Second Pete Commercial
Windows Media :: Quicktime

May 17, 2004: Pete, JimmyD and the goofballs all on the 700 club.

We did not mention our appearance on the show to many people in fear of them not airing the segment, like TBN did with our “Praise the Lord” appearance. It was a close call, but it finally ran when Pat Robertson was not there. The piece was scheduled to air a few weeks back and there was even promo’s on air for it. Suddenly, Pat Robertson who apparently has direct communication with Jesus himself said that Jesus would not go to a porn show and refused to put the piece on the air. We spoke with the producer and said we did not think Jesus would host the 700 Club and left it at that. A week goes by, and the producer said the piece would run on the next Friday (Pat’s day off). So, all that to say, it was a surprisingly great piece, which even includes Jimmy D. Since most of you probably did not watch, check out the clip below.

700 Club feature on XXXchurch
Windows Media

Jason Kidd

"We're going to turn this team around 360 degrees."

Jason Kidd, upon being drafted by the Dallas Mavericks

Sunday, October 24, 2004

New addition to the family

I've been a little lazy on blogging. Sorry. Actually, I've wanted to write that Mandy is pregnant, but I knew that we needed to tell friends and family first. And with this being the major news in my life, I didn't see that I could blog about something else first. I guess you see my dilemma! that most of our friends know this, I can once again freely blog.

I got home last Friday, and Mandy surprised me with this bit of good news. She told me to close my eyes and hold out my hands. She put a pair of baby shoes (aka "booties", which I still think is a funny word). I'm happy to say that I wasn't freaked out. I was happy, and, thankfully, not worried. If anything, I felt weird. That's all I kept saying that day - "this feels weird."

A few days ago, Mandy read the following from It says it best:

Whether you're bursting to tell or planning to wait to spread the good news, the first few weeks of pregnancy are weird. She's not feeling particularly pregnant or different, you're definitely not feeling anything, and life is plain weird.

Monday, October 04, 2004


I just read this. It's from Joel Vestal's blog

i am very moved by the situation in Haiti from Jeanne - Over 1500 dead, 300,000 homeless, 1000 children left orphaned. 25% of Haiti use to be covered with forest, now it is barely 1% - I heard someone commenting about the billions of dollars of damage in Florida and not even mention the loss of life in Haiti to such a drastic degree - what a disgrace -- the poorest nation in the western hemisphere that is so close to our country -- No way to protect themselves or leave Read more here We are collecting a Haiti Relief Fund -- CLICK hERE to DONATE All donations go directly to Haiti!

Sunday, October 03, 2004

Prayer...not what it seems

We just returned from our bay area simple church retreat. Mike Steele was with us for the weekend. A lot happened, but I won't get into that right now. This afternoon I had a thought that, the more I think about it, makes a lot of sense to me.

I haven't ever been that excited about my prayer life. I've been drawn to those with a more contemplative prayer life, and I've longed to be one of those people who can sit for a couple of hours with God. I've never been one of those people. I think I figured out one of the reasons why.

I've felt that the goal of prayer was mission, obedience, and guidance. I've believed that when God wants me to do something, He will let me know, and I'll (hopefully) do it. If I'm trying to make a decision about something, I know that He is going to show me. I've always believed this, always had this faith. Therefore, what's the use of prayer? With decision-making, he knows what I'm thinking, what my needs are. Why do I need to keep repeating them? Now, I do believe that there are times when we are to plead with God and not give up (Luke 18). The p0int is that most important thing is a yielded heart.

I realize that with this type of thinking, I let God off the hook, because he does not need to waste extra time with me. "Just tell me what to do and I'll do it." Efficiency is valued here! Here's the problem, though: What if the goal is not mission, obedience, and guidance?

What if the goal is instead intimacy between a father and his son? This throws efficiency out the door! This changes everything. Now, the purpose of prayer (talking and listening to God) is about building a relationship. The other stuff, though important, is secondary.

Mike Steele said a few times that the physical realm often mirrors the spiritual realm. In the physical, a father and son talk not to get things accomplished, but to build a relationship. That makes sense to me. Why then am I just now getting this? Perhaps it's because I've been deceived. This would explain a lot.

Thursday, September 30, 2004

Things are not what they seem

More from Waking the Dead

Three Eternal Truths
  1. Things are not what they seem
  2. A battle is under way
  3. We have a crucial role to play - We are not what we seem

I've never spent much time thinking about things like this. Maybe that's been a part of my problem. Ever since I first read this chapter, though, this has continued to be in my thoughts. If this is true, then it explains a lot.

Eldredge ends this chapter with a line from The Fellowship of the Ring.

Fate has chosen him.
A fellowship will protect him.
Evil will hunt him.

Here's a good verse from the Bible

"...if you eat meat, eat it to the glory of God and thank God for prime rib."
Romans 14:6, The Message

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

The Offer is LIFE

First, a few quotes...(my thoughts & questions in bold).

I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. Jesus, from John 10:10.

I must say that I have always been intrigued by this. Intrigued isn't the best word. Excited is better. Curious is another one. I realized that I didn't always see LIFE in those who claimed to be followers of Jesus. What gives?

When we hear the words eternal life, most of us tend to interpret that as "a life that waits for us in eternity." But eternal means "unending," not "later." The offer is life, and that life starts now (12).

God intends life for you. But right now that life is opposed. It doesn't just roll in on a tray. There is a thief. He comes to steal and kill and destroy. In other words, yes, the offer is life, but you're going to have to fight for it because there's an Enemy in your life with a different agenda (13).

Why is it that I continue to forget this? Or perhaps it's that I haven't really ever known or believed it.

Until we come to terms with war as the context of our days we will not understand life. We will misinterpret 90 percent of what is happening around us and to us. It will be very hard to believe that God's intentions toward us are life abundant; it will be even harder not to feel that somehow we are just blowing it. Worse, we will begin to accept some really awful things about God (17).

Monday, September 27, 2004

I've started reading the book Waking the Dead, by John Eldredge, with three friends. For awhile now, I've felt that one of my problems is that I'm simple not aware. I have often wondered just how much I miss in life. How often do I miss encounters with people? How often do I take time just sit and be still? How often to I miss the simple things? This book is helping me with this.

So here's my thought. I think I'm going to blog some thoughts I've had while reading this book.