"But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give a reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect." 1 Peter 3:15

Wednesday, December 28, 2005


here is a christmas family photo,...yeah, its from last year, but we were more attractive back then...


We played some Scum with the Family. The scum had to wear the hats.

to much egg nog, perhaps?...

Not even an adorable baby girl could redeem this photo...I laughed so hard when I saw it. I wonder if when God created me, he said, "I could make Ty incredably attractive...or I could make him look like this..."

Thats my cousin's little girl, Ryanen, she pooped on my hand, but we still became friends.

The Chronic (What?) cles of Narnia

Aslan is on the Move!

http://www.youtube.com/watch.php?v=IggTu7kV7No&search=snl%20chronicles%20of%20narnia --funny stuff, funny stuff

Tuesday, December 27, 2005


I think now is just about the right time to write my Christmas blog. I know that it is a couple days after Christmas, but that's ok. Reflection is good. It was a very lovely Christmas. It is so important to have time with family. I do regret, however, not spending enough time sitting in the stable next to the watering trough, gazing at my Savior and Creator in awe. Its funny how so much of that other stuff takes captive the brain, even when your brain is on vacation. I did manage a few minutes alone to reflect on and to ponder that first Christmas so long ago. With all birth, there beauty, and there is pain. So often we reflect on the beauty of the birth of our Savior. This year, I strive to see the pain, the great sacrifice made. I strive to see Mary's pain; betrothed to Joseph, she becomes pregnant. I can only imagine the pain she must have felt looking into Joseph's eyes when he noticed her belly growing, knowing very well that he had not been with her. It must have been a knife to the soul to see the hurt in his eyes. I imagine Joseph's pain believing that the woman he would do anything for, the woman he loved more than himself, had just betrayed him. I imagine both their pain as society shuns them, thinking that the "model couple" has just exposed themselves for what they really are. I imagine God's pain as the time his son would leave his thrown in heaven to go to earth and die for men approaches. I imagine Christ, anticipating the moment, looking down as if from backstage waiting His cue. He knows very well, that He will be hurt, that every person He loves will betray Him and His Father simply by being human. He knows how sin will surround Him. His whole life will sting like salt in a cut, yet I see excitement in His eyes. I imagine Jesus, shivering in the cold, wet and naked, as His mother wraps Him and lays Him in the hard, stone trough.

This Christmas, well, this semester, and perhaps my whole life if I had only been paying attention, God has been teaching me about boldness. Christ demonstrates great boldness, great risk, in coming as a baby to a sinful world for our sake.

I recognize my timidness. It repulses me. I long to be bold as Christ is bold, but I seem to be sitting still. It's far to easy to cling to a life of timidity, a life that won't get you in trouble, but at the same time won't give you adventure. I picked up Wild at Heart, by John Eldredge again. I needed a bit of encouragement. Listen to how John describes God's risk,

"God needs to get a message out to the human race, without which, they will perish...forever. What's the plan? First, he starts with the most unlikely group ever: a couple of prostitutes, a few fishermen with no better than a second-grade education, a tax collector. Then, he passes the ball to us. Unbelievable...

God's relationship with us and with our world is just that: a relationship. As with any relationship, there's a certain amount of unpredictability, and the ever-present likelihood that you'll get hurt. The ultimate risk anyone ever takes is to love..."

This was the risk a tiny baby took for our sake the first Christmas morning. And war raged!

1A great and wondrous sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars on her head. 2She was pregnant and cried out in pain as she was about to give birth. 3Then another sign appeared in heaven: an enormous red dragon with seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on his heads. 4His tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth. The dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to give birth, so that he might devour her child the moment it was born. 5She gave birth to a son, a male child, who will rule all the nations with an iron scepter. And her child was snatched up to God and to his throne. 6The woman fled into the desert to a place prepared for her by God, where she might be taken care of for 1,260 days. --Revelation 12:1-6

The greatest gift of peace to mankind was the greatest act of war towards the enemy. In the middle of this war, lay a baby, the one who will rule with an Iron rod, our Bold Savior, Jesus Christ!

Satan would stop at nothing to destroy him. For once, I'd like to see a Christmas pageant with a seven headed dragon with ten horns. Why cast kids as cows, why cast 13 shepherds or 4 wisemen, and three camels, leaving out the villain of the story, the risk of the story?

13When they had gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. "Get up," he said, "take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Herod is going to search for the child to kill him."...16When Herod realized that he had been outwitted by the Magi, he was furious, and he gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had learned from the Magi.--Matthew 2:13,16

I'm not to sure how accurate this image is, but I always want to imagine Joseph clinging to Mary and Jesus as they gallop through the dessert towards Egypt under a night's sky. Invisible to them, and parting as they gallop onwards, is a war of angels, heavenly and fallen, battling, fighting for the life of the child.

Jesus, The Savior, entered this war, this earth, this pain, this betrayal, for us. He experienced Hell for us; all for a relationship that would let him down.

John Eldredge went on to quote C.S. Lewis,

"Love anything, and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give it to no one, not even an animal."

God gave us his heart that first Christmas morning. It was wrapped in swaddling clothes and lied in a manger. What a risk to take; what boldness. He knew we would kill his heart.

I want to be bold like that. I want to love without fear of a broken heart, willingly offering it into the slippery hands of fallible human beings. I want to take risks. Yet, I'm scared, so scared.

Teach me to be bold, O Lord. I want to boldly surrender, embracing the pain that scares me away. Let me hear you call me a Man. Let me hear you tell me I have what it takes to fight my part in this war.

...But his mother treasured all these things in her heart.

I will continue to Ponder you in my heart, pondering the Bold God I serve, the Bold God who chose to become a small, and helpless infant child for the sake of his love.

Friday, December 23, 2005


If, for one second, I could see the Father's love for me, how would that change the way I love myself?

If I truly believed with all my heart that all of God's creation is beautiful, that God made me beautiful, how would that affect the way I live?

If I always remembered that God has a plan for my life that extends far beyond the dreams of my heart, where would that take me?

If I could see that when the pain of my past strips away the confidence of my now, that God walks by me boldly, how would that change who I am?

In the most difficult seasons of life when I seem to love myself the least, and detest myself the most, What if I could see that God's love for me hasn't changed?

In the moments of brokenness and abandonment, what if I saw that I am whole and in his presence? Could I possibly be broken, yet whole in Christ at the same time? Is there beauty found in the broken?

If my cold selfishness thawed away, and a Christ like selflessness blossomed, would others recognize me?

Could you make me new?

Thank you for sitting with me through the winter. Though I can't always hear your voice, your presence melts the ice. I don't like the cold. The winter chaps; dries me out. It hurts. The wind rips at my bones.

Let me not forget the beauty found in winter. Each snowflake that touches my cheek, has its own beauty. Frost clings to the trees, clothing them in white. The stars seem to shine brighter, the more bitter the cold. Winter has its place for a reason.

Yet, In your time the ice will melt. Green will come again. The water will flow; the brook will sing. How I long to hear its song, but for now, I'll sit in winter.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Don't think, just paint.

I was looking through an art catalog today, and getting excited at all the art materials when two thoughts came to mind. One, do other guys ever get excited looking at graphite pencils, and two, why in the world did I decide to become a student at a small, unknown school in dag cold Manitoba. My dad gave me the wise advice of going to a school in Minneapolis where I could pursue both art and Youth ministry, and though now he is quite confident I made the right decision in coming to Prov, sometimes I can't help but wonder what it would be like to be at another school. I really miss art. I wonder when I'll get to dig my hands into clay again, molding mud into something beautiful. Sometimes I fear the art will leave my fingers, that my talents will fade like an old drawing. When creating, I feel like I can understand God just a little bit more.

How long will God keep me at this school? What road will I walk down next? I long to create, to discover. Yet, if I pursued every opportunity I wanted to, I would be in post secondary education for about 10-15 more years. Opportunities are endless, showcasing Gods Hugeness. The question remains, which opportunity will God give me next, and, will I willingly take it?

18As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. 19"Come, follow me," Jesus said, "and I will make you fishers of men." 20At once they left their nets and followed him.--Matthew 4:18-20

Sometimes, I wonder, do we think to much as Christians? I think, that perhaps, we try to scrutinize our callings, analyze them, know the "why" when God hasn't given us the "why". We pray to hear God's voice when he's already spoken. We want shouting when God simply wants to whisper. Do we have to be 100% sure of where we are going? Dare I say it, do we even have to be 100% sure of the calling? Its hard to be 100% sure when God simply doesn't always make sense. When does prayer for clarity switch to trust in the fog? Where does faith come in? In a way, its a lot like art. If an artist thinks to much as they do their work, if they don't take risk, if they erase and redo, the piece can loose its spontaneity, its spirit. God wants our lives to be beautiful art, and the best comes when we step out in faith, allowing the Master Artist to shine His creativity.

not a day goes by where I don't wonder if I've made the biggest mistake in my life taking the job of a part time youth director. But even if it is the biggest mistake of my life (next to forgetting to put oil in my engine), could God make it into a beautiful mistake?

So, right now, I sit. Prov is where I belong. My family is here. It blows me away that only after a year and a half with these people (or less), they have become my greatest blessing. And the church is where I'm at. Though I'm not so quick to say it's where I belong, its where God is teaching me and using me, so, I'll trust that it's where He wants me.

Yet many opportunities still lie out there, which ones will God call me down? Simon Peter and Andrew seem a little crazy. They immediately left their nets, got out of the boat, and followed Christ. Will I so willingly, and eagerly jump out of my boat, cast away the nets that entangle me, and follow my Savior? Or will I think to much?

Saturday, December 17, 2005

A toast to mr. Anonymous with a tall glass of Egg nog

Ahh, to be home! it feels quite nice. I do come home almost every weekend, but now I get to spend time with my family. I've got a pretty stellar family. Its kinda rough when you see your family every weekend, but you don't really get to spend any time with them at all. I can't wait to take my sisters out on dates and catch up on thier lives.

It finally feels like Christmas. before heading home, Em and I stopped at my ex-youth pastor's home. His little girl is so beautiful. One of the chubbiest/cutest babies i've ever seen. Her teeth are beginning to pop out. Its strange when kids grow up even without me watching them, suprises me every time.

The General took on a new battle scar. apparently he didn't like driving over a snow bank a whole lot, but mud flaps aren't that important anyway. It was nice driving home knowing I could stay home. the trees were amazing. I felt like I was driving through a wintery Narnia. Snow is so beautiful.

Some fine young gentleman has been giving my sister, Lyss, one Christmas gift a day to celebrate the 12 days of Christmas. Its kind of exciting, I'm not going to lie. I was always a little scared of guys being interested in my sisters. I thought I'd actually have to start working out or somthing. I don't know what I was scared of though, amazing people attract other amazing people, and Lyss is definitly in the top five most amazing people I know list, so of course she'd attract a quality guy. I give this guy an 11 on a 10 point scale. the best part is he was number 1 on the very short list of guys I would allow to express interest in Lyss. God is good, what can I say. he's smooth to, holy crank! poetry, flowers, chocolates, and humor, and this is only the fifth day! You got to love a guy with such class and good taste in women. I sulute you Mr. Anonymous. Wow,I'm begining to feel like a teenage girl at a slumber party talking about boys, this is rediculous.

This christmas will be great. I've got a plethera of books to read. I'm sure I'll tell you about those later. Top of the list right now, is a bit of Ted Dekker, Blue like Jazz by Donald Miller, and Captivating by John Eldrege. And drawing, I can't wait! I got some new Christmas music, it'll be nice to sit down with a cup of tea, some "yule be sorry" Christmas music, and a pencil and just see what comes out.

Can't wait to see Hondo and Erdawg. And John Kelly. Lauren's belly will be showing quite a bit by now. maybe the baby will even kick. I'm going to talk to the baby so she can know "Uncle" tyler's voice ahead of time. yeah, the kid and I will be tight. Ah, christmas break is going to be hectabeautiful. I have got to go catch up on a couple Alias episodes. I could use some eggnog right now...

Sunday, December 11, 2005

The prince in the pauper

I love those moments when words mean more than they have before. When simple truths become profound. When promises become real. Our God is a good God. Oh, how my finite mind trys to grasp His infiniteness. My hand can't even palm a basketball, how silly to try to grasp His hugeness. Yet He takes my hand! The fact that He is beyond comprehension makes me desire Him all the more. Restoration. Why would the great God of the universe, Creator, King, Ruler with an Iron rod, why would He want any part of me. How can the Greatest desire this? I am broken, flawed, fallen, scrapped, graffiti-covered, poisoned. I am mean, bitter, angry and sad. I am valued. Why? When He could just start over, why does He continually, restore me. He restored me then, he restores me now, and on and on He goes. I'm like the teddy who's button eye fell off. A little boy doesn't want mommy to so the eye back on for his sake, but that teddy may be able to see once again. God restores me. He Restores me, because He loves me. I can see again. My eyes were wet under the eyelids. The warm water pushed its way out. I tried to hide the tears, but they fell, my soul's offering sliding down my cheeks. I wiped them away, hiding their truth in my heart. Such a simple truth. Such a profound mystery. I am Joyful, I am excited, I am His, I am Restored! My Redeemer Lives!

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Who am I?

I was talking with a friend today about who we are and when and where it is that we are our “real” self. The other day I wondered about this. Are we most ourselves in those situations that we are comfortable and suited for? It’s at these times that I feel like I am truly myself. But what about those times when I’m not in my forte, when I’m not in my ideal situation? It seems that it is these times that are the most frequent. They are the difficult times when I must strive to be a man of God, when I must strive to be the same man I am in my ideal surrounding. Which me is the real me? When looking at Job, was he the prosperous man that he was before God allowed everything to be taken away, or was he the man that cursed the day he was born…or was he both. God counted Job as a man of righteousness, and he was blessed following all his torment. He never cursed God, and loved God despite the circumstances, though he hated them and thought God was being unfair. I’ve never, and probably never will face the excruciating agony that Job faced, but there will be times and situations throughout life that I am incredibly comfortable with, and others where I feel out of place, uncomfortable, or down right hurt in. I believe we have a choice. We can choose to be our “real” self, our best self in those ideal moments and places where we truly feel like ourselves, those places we feel we were designed for, or we can choos to be our "real" self in any situation, giving of ourselves to God no matter how hard it is, ideal or not. Growth takes place in the ideal, but the ideal is temporary. We can grow in those places of awkwardness, those places of, “It’s nice, but it’s sure not (insert special place here)”, and those places of pain as well (pain is a good teacher). It’s these places that we face far more often, giving us a much greater opportunity for growth. I don’t want to be a one dimensional Christian, only giving my best when I’m in my best. I want to take the gift of my ideal surroundings when I’m in them and offer myself up to God in those, and I want to give myself to God when I’m surrounded by the less then ideal as well. I want to be one person, not many. We are made up of many parts. I am made up of good and bad, kindness and cruelty. God is One; His character doesn’t conflict with itself as all human's character does. I recognize that I’ll never be able to be completely the same person that I am here (wherever here may be) as I am somewhere else or in some other situation (wherever that may be). I change like the seasons just as every person does. This truth must be recognized, but that shouldn’t stop me from striving to be my best, the person God designed me to be, at all times, and praising the God who is the best at all times.

Sunday, December 04, 2005


I used to be an optimist. but every now and then things look so dark. I was the kind of guy that thought DC talk would get back together again. Sometimes life hurts. You are torn at the seems. mind exploding. past pains attacking. frustrations annoying. Searching in all the wrong places for comfort that cannot satisfy. Guilt punches you in the eye, while shame takes a kidney shot. You feel like everything is collapsing down on you all at once, leaving you lying in a pile of rubble, breathing in the dusty air, enveloped in the pounding heat of a pain thats more real than life. blackness hits.

Daddy, hold my hand. I need to know that you love me. I need to see you smile at me. Are you proud of me?

I don't care if the cup is half full or half empty, If it be your will, I'll drink it. give me the strength to drink it. I just need your help to tip it down. How I long to be Bold! But I feel so timid, so timid.

I feel you. Thank you for your warm hug. heating up the darkness.

Sometimes life seems so dark, but you'll flip the switch soon enough. I still think DC talk will get back together one day.

Thursday, December 01, 2005


What do you want for me?
with this brush in my hand, I paint out the picture of my day.
Don't want to use others to erase my past hurts,
brushing away their shavings from my canvas.
such a predictable piece.
its selfish, drawing in the lines, scared to leave them.
Scared to paint what's really true.
where's the excitement?
the wonder?
Its been done before.

You want something new for me.
your brush is your breath.
you paint the picture I never could have seen.
colors I've never seen, joy I've never felt.
each stroke changes me
you paint heaven in my heart
dampening the brush with your tears, you hurt for me.

My life is your canvas.
I so desperately want to smudge it.

This is not mine, it is yours.

Create in me a clean heart O Lord my God!

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Modern day Pharisee

Hey hurting world on the verge of death.

I'd look at you, but my own life is just a mess.

I cry for the scrape on my finger,

while you lie with your broken limbs.

I ask God to save me from my pain,

While I sit here in my sins.

There is no time to help you,

I got to save myself.

I contently dream of heaven,

and forget that you'll go to hell.

It'd be crazy to leave my comfort,

politically incorrect.

So I won't tell you about my savior,

I'll let you go to heck.

After all, I'm a christian,

this is about me and Christ.

Jesus already saved me, why should I have to pay a price?

I'll read my self-help books, read my bible, and I'll pray,

but I won't tell you about my savior, the one, the truth the Way.

Wouldn't want to offend you,

since you are comfortably lost.

No, I'll let you wonder, and then pay the greatest cost.

My mind is so cluttered

with girls, my job, and school,

so why, oh hurting world,

would I take time to think of you?

Content as a white washed tomb,
with beauty on the outside,
and dead and dark within,
Dear Jesus, please save me!
I don't want to live in this sin.
Give me a heart for the hurting,
A passion for the lost.
Let me surrender my whole self,
whatever be the cost.
Let my life be an open book,
Oh author of my soul.
I want to let others read Your story,
wherever you send, I'll go.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

The General was thirsty

You know how people kind of need water to live? Oil is kinda like water for cars. I discovered this last week. My car was very thirsty. I guess, I don't really think about those kind of things because I don't drink a whole lot of water. Anyway, I started to drive home for the weekend and my car was sounding rather sickly. In fact, the night before, I had gone to Winnipeg with a friend and we brought a cell phone because it sounded like there was a small animal carcass stuck in my engine or something. If cars could have strept throat, my car definitely needed his tonsils out from the sound of it. So, I was driving home and my speedometer wasn't working. I don't really care when that happens though, it usually doesn't work. Its kinda fun that way because then I have to guess how fast I'm going and sometimes it will start working all of a sudden so that it will jump from zero to 70 mph just like that. It makes me feel like rambo or something, all the power. 0-70 in one sec is pretty freakin awesome. Frigging awesome if I may say, but this night my needle jumped up to 60, then started falling again and bouncing all over the place so I didn't know what the deal was. Craziness. I put The General (that's the name of my car) into cruise, but cruise didn't obey me. I didn't have to push down the gas pedal anymore, but I definitely wasn't going at a constant speed. The gas pedal was going up and down below my foot without me pushing it. This was around the time that I asked myself why a demon would waste its time possessing my car. I thought that maybe I should head back to school and grab a cell phone so that I wouldn't get stranded on my way home, but when I pulled over, The General croaked on me. I turned the ignition, but the only thing that happened when I turned it was that all the lights went off. Yeah, it pretty much sucked. I got out of the car and told The General to open wide. I don't know a whole lot about cars, so popping the hood didn't really help a lot. Plus it was already dark out, so I kinda just said, "yeah, looks pretty dark down there....pretty sure I have no idea what's wrong, but I can guess it probably looks pretty bad." I climbed back in my car, and was about to pray when a cool stranger, a good Samaritan, or as I like to call them, a good Jihad extremist al Qaida terrorist (that's what a Samaritan would have looked like to a Jew when Jesus told the story, it makes sense, just ask my Prof)came along and gave me a ride all the way back to Prov. Long story short, check your oil often. The general is dead, he needs a heart transplant. Much good came out of this as well though. The other day I found a drawing of me and my smoking car sitting in my mail box with a loonie taped to it. I laughed so hard, it made my day. I'm pretty sure that's the coolest thing I've ever had in my mailbox, besides the dead frog, but that's still way cooler then the dead frog. I wish I knew who gave it to me, because whoever it is, is truly a very special person. How kind, how considerate. The best note I've ever received, and it had no words. Also, what a story. One of my friends told me that I could probably at least get a good sermon illustration or two out of this. I think I got a comedy sketch and a sermon illustration. I told you at the beginning of my ramblings how as humans we all need water to live, and how to a car, Oil is that water. When the mechanic called me, he told me that my engine was deceased. It's dead. The only thing its good for now is a boat anchor, or a really hard pillow. It fused together. There is no hope, no life in it. We become the same way without water. There is no life in us without water. Jesus Christ is our living water. Without him we do not have the life that we were created to live. If the Living Water doesn't saturate our lives, if we don't check up on our spiritual health on a regular basis we'll end up being about as healthy as The General. It appears The General has fought his last battle. That doesn't have to be us. Continue to fight the good fight that our Lord has called us to.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Love blind?

Is love blind? I don't know if i believe it is. Infatuation is blind, I am quite sure of that. Thats when everything that special someone does is beautiful and everything that person does can be justified in your mind. If I was fully infatuated with another person i could justify her slugging Santa Clause in the face for kicks and giggles and think "how cute." Well, maybe not, but it would take alot to make my eyes see the error of her ways. Infatuation is blind, but is love? I think we confuse infatuation with love a lot of the time. if we trully love someone, we would probably see the error of that persons ways, confront them about that error, and choose to love them despite it, whether they decide to turn from it or not. God has chosen to be "blind" of our sins if we have accepted Christ into our lives. I realize that I don't know if I fully understand what that means, but I know when God looks at me, he doesn't see a sinner, he sees his child, thanks to a Savior who loved me despite the "error of my ways".

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Successful obedience

What do we strive for in life? I asked myself that question the other day, as I examined myself. I came to the conclusion that what I've been striving for, what most people probably strive for, is success. What does success mean to a Christian? When I look at myself as a youth leader, I believe I have been striving for success in this area, but success is so hard to define. What is a successful youth ministry. Is it one that brings youth to Christ, one that sends them out into the world with a new mindset and focus on Christ so that they can make a difference? What role do I play in all of this? Can I change the mind of a youth? Can I make them accept Christ. Some times as youth leaders we try to kick the Holy Spirit out of the equation, and try to find our success in His work. We have no power over the hearts or minds of youth, only God can penetrate those areas. I don't want to strive for "success" any longer. I can not succeed in an area I have no power or control over. Striving for this success will lead me to a brick wall. Instead, we all must strive for obedience. When I die, let people not say that there was a successful man, no, I want them to say, "there was a man of obedience."

Saturday, September 10, 2005

my hearts longing cry

I've heard it said that everyone changes,
then why do i stay the same,
I want you to mold me,
but i feel like a dried up clump of playdough
my brain is scattered and scared
i cling to familiarity, and long to be new
change me from this oxiMorron
mold me beautiful, make me a portraite of your face for the world to see,
dump me from this box, pull off the plastic
its time to breathe

Friday, September 02, 2005


Wow, what a summer I've had. I've been stretched, challenged. I've learned. I've grown, I've failed, I've conquered. I've laughed, I've cried. I've charged, I've retreated. I've resisted, and submitted. It will be a summer I won't forget. Though I didn’t walk with God every day, he walked with me every moment. Yes, this Summer was amazing, so I thought I’d share the most memorable moments.
The grass eating contest. We couldn't think of anymore games to do at camp so we had two minutes to see who could fill their mouths with the most grass, yanking it from the ground with our teeth. I gaged and came in second, Troy won.
Getting a call from on of my best friend, Shawn, who is serving in Iraq. I miss my brother, I pray he comes home safe.
John Snorting cottage cheese at camp after i told him jello is snortable.
John sneezing out cottage cheese from the other nostril that he snorted from.
Peeing in a Fabreeze bottle with Jeremy and Eric and "marking our territory".
Spilling our Fabreeze bottle on my hand.
Inventing the Pocket monsters game with my little buddy Issac, Troy and Marcy's little boy. I'd pull my pants pockets inside-out and whip them at him growling and yelling, iiiittts tthhhheeee, Pocket Monster!!!!! then he'd try to grab them and he'd bite them, and ocasionally slug my in the danger zone.
Issac walking up to me and putting his hands in my back pockets or chewing on my shirt. Four year olds like to do that i guess.
Rolling in the Dirt with Issac to see how dirty we could get, and him putting sand down my shirt and calling it mosquito ticks.
John and I hiding in the full dunk tank during councelor hunt with our clothes on, and then hiding in the dusy fire pit after we were all wet.
teaching the "game for life" to my youth group.
All the girls swooning of Andrew all summer at camp.
James driving over an hour to camp at 3 in the morning just to prank us with the recording of a bob cat outside our cabin doors and scaring the girls into thinking that they were attacked by demons...."the latest theory...."
camp girls msning me weeks after camp insisting that we were attacked by a bear or somthing.
John telling our campers that poison ivy travels up a urine stream.
my campers stealing my keys, ductaping me, stealing my clothes, and running my dirty underwear up the flag poll.
John telling me that it was a good idea for me to have "strategicly placed my dirty boxers out for the campers to run up the flag poll as he showed me the poison ivy he recieved from his "clean" boxers that the campers got hold of.
Devos led alongside my bro John, and all the other counceling guys.
Late night conversations at Sr. High camp.
Lunches with Pastor Scott on Mondays
Running cable through the ceiling to my church office (the church library) with Josh and Siah and then finding out it didn't work, and going to dairy queen to heal our misery.
Coming back and fixing it realitivly easily, and going back to dairy queen to celebrate.
Going thrift shopping with the youth group and finding the coolest shirt ever for about a quarter...really it is, very sweet.
Playing hacky sack with the boys at church.
Discovering the largest dragon fly I had ever seen and watching him eat the swarm of mosquitos we were standing in. we played games with him for awhile and I named him Trogdor.
Watching Dana(dude in my youth group)lead a group of young ones in a bible study, cool stuff, great guy
James lighting his fart, telling dumb james stories and trying to bring his large poop back to the cabin one night so that he could show it to all of us.
Troy sneeking up behind James in the bathroom stall and scaring him so bad that he splashes toilet water all over in the process.
Josh (youth grouper) playing his acordian in the morning to wake us up at camp. it was beautiful.
One of my campers telling me that he has poison Ivy in the worst imaginable spot.
Cleaning the camp bathrooms with my servant hearted sister and mother before the camping season.
Watching the most beautiful meteor shower as John and I layed out in the soft grass of the north field and shared our hearts, brother to brother.
finding out that my Ex-girlfriend was getting married.
Watching Luke and Lindsey stare so intently into each others eyes before saying the big "I do".
Taking dinner mints and makeing a happy face on the cake at our table for the reception after Luke and Lindsey's wedding
Being part of the doggy pile of all the guy staff at camp, Troy, Eric, Adam, Me, and John, and yelling "owe, my belt buckle" because i was in panic and wanted out (belt buckle was an excuse, i admit)
Playing the Trust Fall game at camp
Supper manning a jump over the "electric fence" during the electric fence game into all of my wonderfull friends arms.
Getting a free car from Danna and his family because they knew i was in need, what an answer to prayer. It was Dannas for a day before he gave it up.
Makeing a youth group movie with our own special effects. The matrix, we entered the matrix.
Making Fire taffy at bluewater by starting laffy taffy on fire and eating it as it burns, then burning my finger.
Sitting in the beautiful woods at bluewater and reading Gods gift to me.
Finding a screw in my mashed potatos at a church meal....i won't say what church or what meal.
One of my campers saying, "no your not, your girlfriend is getting married tomorrow!" when I jokingly said I was married as my young campers asked me how old I was and didn't believe I was twenty.
Getting my hair cut on a boat dock after youth group one night and James almost shooting my sister with a potato cannon. I flipped out!
Watching Barlow girl, the Afters and By the Tree at the fair,...one of the barlow girls smiled at me, i'm pretty sure of it.
Playing indian poker with tom during our break from concert set up.
Telling stories to the little ones at church.
Little Evan sitting next to me every sunday at church and all the hugs he gives me every week.
Telling one of my campers to yell out "Andrew, your mom brought your rash ointment." as Andrew hit on the life gaurd at the beach. that camper made me proud.
Getting poison ivy on my feet after having the capital idea of portaging the canoe through the woods instead of just paddleing it to the beach.
Playing some tennis with Josh (youth group dude, pastors son) and Siah (nother youth group dude) and wacking worms with our tennis rackets, and paintballs
Starting "Primal Displays of Affection" with john in which we'd go around and punch, bite and growl at people as we said, Primal display of affection!
Taking a poll of how many of us think Andrew is severly attractive and then reporting it to the lady's Andrew is hitting on down at the beach. 9 out of ten is not bad at all, Andrew. I love you bro.
Playing junk wars with john and freaking out as teddy flew closer and closer.
Starting all sorts of new Pookie games...capture the pookie, ultimate pookie, duck duck pookie...
Troy ball
Nukem, tyler style, even though I was the one person that didn't like tyler style
One of the soccer camp kids writing "I love men" on my soccer shirt, and then Christina adding "wo" with and arrow for me. Very sweet of her.
Starting a job in a church and being so scared i could hardly sleep at night.
Hearing Chad (youth group dudester) sing at his baceloreate, wow, what a voice!
Watching Roxanne( youth group girl) get baptized along with so many special people from our church. way to go Roxanne, you done me proud.
Ahnica and Chelsea (youth group) so incredably excited to council at bible camp for the first time, and expressing that to me, very cool.
Siah jumping off the shed roof and falling in the fire pit. ouch.
Watching the soccer team much of my youth group is in dominate with a shut out at thier first game. very beautiful. i wanted to dance like a monkey, but it was cold outside.
Young friend of mine hitting me up for advice on women....poor guy, if he only knew who he was talking to.
Scoring a goal at soccer camp, yes, i did, it was fun.
Entering my art at the fair and getting some nice cash (six dollars!!!!!!!!) and some winning ribons.
Eating sandy's food. I miss sandy's food, i miss sandy.
Watching Jack, Troy and Marcy's other son (two years old) pose like a model for my camera.
Praying with one of my campers after he accepted Christ for the first time.
Every time Jack or Issac would come to me wanting to sit in my lap.
Watching several campers raise their hands as Pastor Scott asked them if they would like to ask Jesus into thier hearts.
Chad duct taping a cinder block to my feet and then carrying me into lake of the Woods ovr his shoulder to the "huh?..." of several confused onlookers.
Late night Msn convos with my college friends.
Late night convos with my youth group friends.
Youth sharing their hurts and struggles with me.
Youth Sharing their excitement and Joys with me.
Reading two Ted Dekker novels and forgetting everything else important. Addicting!
Driving to Bluewater sucessfully by myself, after getting lost once or twice...or a lot more times than once or twice.
Conversations with John.
watching a dragonfly fly backwards.
Councelor meeting times.
Having dunking contests with little paul from camp and my bro Nick at Bluewater.
Sleeping on top of my car in a busy parking lot while waiting for my mom and sisters. they shop slow.
Playing halo with the youth group. I'm going to change my screen name to Buck, because they kill me so much.
Youth group guys throwing fire crackers at me and laughing histarically.
Reading proverbs
Renaming lake bronson, Hell's loogie.
Bathing from a half drank water bottle when the water was turned off before the wedding.
Watching troy this summer and seeing what it trully means to be a man after Gods own heart, and wanting that.
spitting on james from the tower.
Persecuted church at lake bronson.
Watching this beautiful finch land on a grass weed and following it. it was as small as a humming bird, and so beautiful.
Putting duct tape racing stripes on my car, and reputting duct tap racing stripes on my car. red duct tape fades fast.
Reading Matt's email to Clint on what he thought should be put on the SMAC web Page. Hot or Not profiles on the Something More About Christ Web page could have been quite cool.
Doing the trust walk with my campers, and almost falling off a picnic table.
entering a deep conversation with John in the shower room as we are getting dressed, ending up both in tears, hugging each other and praying. I'm in a towel and John is only wearing pants, and then one of our campers walks in, says, "Hey guys...(startled silence)........whens devotions?...." I didn't think of what that could possibly have looked like until later.
Dairy Queen Runs with the youth group.
Watching MST3K Manos, Hands of Fate with Eric. worst movie ever...
Going to Grand Forks with Eric, Danna, and Aaron to See the New Star Wars and going to the little boys section of Target to buy star wars tees to wair to the movie.
Visiting Chris and talking youth director to youth director with my youth director. we had really good coffee that morning and really good burgers that noon.

Wow, what a summer it has been. thank you God, for your continuing blessings. I will always praise you

Sunday, August 28, 2005

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world, indeed its the only thing that ever has." - Margaret Mead

now we're ready to look sooooo good!

This is my family and I looking so good.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

A letter to my Love

I'm sorry I've been ignoring you. I've been so very selfish. It seems that I have become my number one fan lately and that I'll cattier to my every whim. Instead of talking to you and enjoying your presence, I have replaced you with a horrible addiction to TV and the internet the remote has become my best friend. You gave me that beautiful love letter but I let it sit on the chair collecting dust. I should be reading it at every minute letting every sweet word fill up my lungs, but instead I forget what it says. You call me a hundred times a day, but I never answer your calls. It seems that the only time I do talk to you is when I want something. You have been so very patient with me. You are so perfect, beautiful. I don't see why you put up with me. You should have dropped me, swept me under the rug a long time ago. I've cheated on you, I've deliberately disrespect you and went behind your back, yet you always forgive me and take me back. I am in love with you, I know that I don't show it well, but I will. I want to breath every word you say. I want to hold you tight. Your beauty is greater than a shower of shooting stars. Your kindness is softer than a bed of moss. You have the intoxicating and pleasant sent of a new born baby. I want to hold your hand forever, to melt into it. You make me want to walk on water for you. Dear Jesus, I don't want to fail you ever again. Take me back.

Love, Tyler

Monday, August 22, 2005

lights, camera, deception!

wow, i have been spamed! check out the comment on my last blog, its just a stupid advertisement for somthing, i don't even know what! thats crazy. i wonder if that works, advertising through blog comments. i'd just imagine that it gets people ticked off. "hmm....they are using my blog for thier own free advertising... ooooo lama insurance, sounds important, i think i'll buy some" i thought it was kinda funny, and i reallized that i have no idea how to erase comments so now everyone who wants can write a bunch of stupid stuff and i can't do anything about it! i don't care if its advertising, I like comments no matter what, I am a sick comment hungery crazed animal! Last week my youth group and I shot a bunch of cool video footage and played it in reverse so that it would look crazy awesome. we did all sorts of stuff that is impossible unless you are in the matrix. one thing we did for example was running backwards off of the roof of a shed and continuing backwards, then playing it in reverse so it looks like we are running and jumping up onto the shed. It looked pretty awesome, but one of the guys jumped off, ran backwards right into the fire pit and landed on his back. it was funny/not funny at all, because his back is in lots of pain. we did all sorts of crazy awesome stuff. my favorite was driving slowly in reverse as someone jumped onto the roof, rolled down to the hood, pushed off and ran backwards so that when we played it in reverse it looks like i'm crusing straight into a guy, clipping him at the knees, and driving off as he rolls up my whindshield. The video was great. it almost looked real. it was very decieving. I love illusions that appear real. David Blaine, David Copperfield, you know,...all those davids who are illusionists, i love that stuff! I could watch it for hours. When I was younger, i'd go to the library and get magic books and learn the tricks. then i'd do them for my family. Its very important to realize that not all things are as they seem. Not all decieving illusions are fun either. The greatest illusionist, the greatest deciever is not David Blaine, the Mind Freak, or David Copperfield. The Greatest Deciever is Satan, and hes been practicing for Thousands of years. But like all illusionists, if you study how he plays out his deception, you can catch on and not fall for his tricks the next time. In my NLT Study bible there is a little deal that talks about Satan's Plan. He uses Doubt first. If he can get you to doubt Gods word, he will get you traped. Next he uses Discouragement, you start looking at yourself and your own problems rather than at God. Then Comes Diversion, The wrong things just look so right, so appealing. next, he flips on you and uses defeat. Right after telling you, "Come on, its no big deal", he flips and says "What a horrible Christian! Man did you screw up big this time, God could never forgive you or look at you the same ever again. After that is Defeat, you feal like a failure so whats the use in even trying anymore. You are destined to be a failure so you keep on failing, there is no hope. And last there is delay. instead of running to God, to his word, and to other Christians to get back on your feet, you continue to live in the sin that Satan wanted you in, because you're just a sinner anyway...theres no way you could live the life God wants you to live. Lets look at an example. A young guy stumbles onto some Pornographic web site. He knows Gods word says that even looking at a woman with lustful thougts causes a man to commit adultry in his heart, but really what harm is looking at a few pixels on a computer really going to do. afterall, its just him and a computer, who is he hurting? Doubt. He thinks, I'm just a young guy, I'm not getting married anytime soon, my body is designed to want this stuff. I can't help it, its human nature. Discouragment. Besides, its fun, its exciting. My palms are sweating, my head is spinning. this is great! Diversion. Then it strikes. I can't believe i looked at this trash. what would my parents think! My pastor, my friends...My future wife. This picture is a woman, a person, not just an image...She was created by God, she doesn't deserve this. How could I fail God like this...I am horrible, i really blew it. Defeat. But then he does it again and again. He finally accepts that it must just be a normal thing, he really can't help it. maybe he really is just a failure bound to fail. Maybe he doesn't even mind. Delay. Satan. He loves to see us fall. He used the same tatics on Adam and Eve. I encourage you to read the story and see if you can find them being played out. (Genesis 3) Notice though that Satans first strategy is to get us to question God and Gods word. This is why its so important to place Gods word in our lives. Ephesians 6:10-17 talks about the Armor of God. the whole passage is about armor except for one weapon. that weapon is Gods word. ...take the Sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Eph 6:17 Without Gods word in our hearts and minds, when we battle Satan, we are just throughing punches, a four year old throughing punches at a football linebackers leg. we need a sword that pierces, cuts through the marrow, and wins battles. Satan doesn't decieve with cameras and mirrors, but God still gives us the strength to call his bluff.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Christianity without discipleship is always Christianity without Christ.
—Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Thursday, August 04, 2005

I miss OK soda

you remember OK soda? i used to love that stuff, i wonder why they took it off the shelves, it was scrumptralescent. I miss it, dream of it sometimes. that and those candies that were kinda like jelly beans only looked like little rocks. This is just a random thought blog, i hope that is ok. I was thinking the other day how much fun it would be to be five years old again. I haven't watched sateday morning cartoons forever, and i am falling seriously behind on my ninja turtles. It'd be so cool to have no major responsibilties and to watch saterday morning cartoons, eat sugar cereal, and play with legos again. At the same time though, i am really begining to accept and even enjoy this whole growing up thing. I was thinking today how much i am really looking forward to being a father. how great will it be to watch ninja turtles with my boy, teach him how to throw a football, kick a soccer ball, how to treat a lady, read a book, tie a shoe, to read the bible to him and get excited about it, to take him on canoe trips, and camping trips. My goodness, i think i look even more forward to being a Dad then i do to being a husband. in fact, being a husband kinda scares me. I'm not sure why, maybe i'm just scared of getting into another relationship and getting hurt, i don't know for sure. I also started to think how i don't think i'd mind it a whole lot if i just became the "Uncle Tyler" you know, the guy who's not really related, but gets invited to all the family gatherings anyway because the family loves him so much. I got alot of great friends that i wouldn't at all mind being the "Uncle" Tyler to. You know what though, I am content right now. life is good. There are plenty of young ones that i can be uncle tyler to right now, and even though i'm not 5 years old, i am still young and got an amazing life ahead of me, God has blessed me with amazing friends and an awesome family. What more could I ask for. OK soda and some Ninja Turtles would be nice, but i'm not going to push it.

Monday, August 01, 2005

Crest Kid Shoes

I had a banana in my car for about three weeks. I didn't throw it out because I was kinda making it my mascot. I wanted to see how many people I could impress with my smelly rotting banana but then I realized that smelly rotting bananas aren't that impressive and my car smells like a garbage disposal now. That really has nothing to do with anything. I just got done with another camp. It was an interesting camp. Some of the girls named my bum. They named left side bob, right side Fred. I wish they could have at least came up with some more exciting names. But really, that has nothing to do with anything either. It was the most frustrating, wearing camp I've ever experienced, and that's saying something after being a peg leg for several days after soccer camp, yet its the camp that I've learned the most at out of all of them this summer. The campers stole my pants, they stole my shirt, they stole my boxers, my socks, they duct taped things to my car and then stole my car keys, they put tooth paste in shoes, they broke the trunk of my fellow counselor, and moved his car, they snuck out every night, they ran everything possible up the flag pole, and they blatantly disobeyed us on every occasion possible. We'd tell them to get to bed, it's a big day tomorrow, no sneaking out, its time to sleep,....They'd say, No. We'd tell them to be quiet and hit the sack, they'd say fall asleep so we can leave. They'd purposely disobey us as we watched. It was crazy! Then I had a realization. I was a Jr. High boy once too. And then I had an even worse revelation. I was becoming frustrated, discouraged, and even angry with my campers for their disrespect and disobedience, and I realized that I act the exact same way towards God. So often I blatantly tell God, No thank you, I'll do it my way. It was a hard pill to swallow, I think I'll be gagging it up for awhile. It was a challenging camp but in a good way. I love my campers despite there lack of obediance, and it is very awesome to know that God loves me despite my screw ups, even when i've purposly have been a jerk. Its not an excuse, but it is a relief. We are still called to make Christ the Lord of our lives, not just our Savior. Several campers accepted Christ into there lives for the first time, and it was so cool to pray with them as they cried tears of joy. Have you ever watched a jr. high kid cry tears of Joy before? My fellow counselor, John, and I are continuing to become better and better friends. He is such a good guy, and I am so blessed to have met him this summer, I know we have started a friendship that will last. One night when we were leading devos, all of the counseling guys shared how this has been the hardest summer of our lives. I can't begin to express how much of a relief that was for me. Maybe its that pain finds comfort in misery, maybe it was me realizing that I'm not as special as I thought, or maybe its that we are doing something right and Satan wants to see us fall on our faces. All I know is that I am very thankful for my friends and that I don't have to run this race alone.

Monday, July 18, 2005

True Intimacy and Spat Cake

Yesterday I went to a very beautiful wedding. Two of my lovely friends were married, Luke and Lindsey. I am very happy and excited for the two of them, and there families. I love the phrase "tie the Knot" because that is exactly what you are doing in a Christian marriage, a cord of three strands is not easily broken, and when Christ is the center of a marriage, what a strong cord! How exciting, I pray blessings on them. As I was eating cake after the wedding I got bored and started fidgeting, that's just kinda what I do. I took the dinner mints from the table and made a happy face on the cake on our table, because, yesterday was a happy day. People kept on banging there cups with cutlery so that Luke and Lindsey would have to smooch. I thought that must have been getting rather old, how would they have time to even get a bite of cake in? I decided that at my wedding some day, when people start banging there cups trying to get us to smooch, on the second or third time, I'm just going to spit a big clump of cake into my wife's mouth so that everyone will be to grossed out to hit there cups anymore. I like cake and I want to enjoy it. Wedding cake is for minutes, marriage kisses are forever. Eric said that was a good idea so he'd do it to, but I told him that was plagiarising and that I would get married first so he couldn't copy me. He admitted that he didn't really want to. Tina got married on the 8th. I thought it was going to be a very difficult day for me. I was scared because I was counseling at bible camp and there was no way to block the thought, I work with her brother, and one of her best friends, there was no way for me to block the fact that they were leaving the camp to go to her wedding. It turned out to be a relatively painless day. God has given me great peace, a lasting peace. Some of my campers asked me how old I am and when I told them I was twenty, they didn't believe me. So I milked it a bit and told them I am married too, with five children. When I said that one of the campers chimed in, "na-uh, your girlfriend is getting married tomorrow." wow,...ouch, I thought that one would sting, especially coming from a eight year olds mouth, but instead I laughed, I mean, crap, that is dang funny, like the best insult ever, and I don't even think he realized it. I am very happy for Tina, and I pray blessings on her and Corbin, I am sure that he is a wonderful man. I have been praying for a long time that Tina would find a man that would love her more than himself and less than God, and if God answered my prayers, as I'm sure he did because that's just what he does, Corbin is just that man. I've been praying for Corbin too. Today I talked about wandering from God with my youth group. That really doesn't sound like it'd apply in this blog, but it does, I'll show you. See, we talked a bit about the prodigal son and his wandering away and hitting rock bottom. He was so low that he was feeding pigs and desiring the slop he threw to them. That itself is revolting, but when you consider that in his faith, he's not even supposed to touch pigs because they are unclean, it puts his lowness in a new perspective. In the end though he went back to his father and his father ran to him with open arms. What exactly was the young son seeking? I would say fulfillment. That is what we all seek. That is where these two ideas mesh. Lately, I have greatly wondered about intimacy. I see all my friends around me getting married, so many even younger than I. I can't help to wonder when my time may come. I can't seem to help but think that I won't find fulfillment until I'm holding the hand that fits mine perfect. And you know, I've been looking for fulfillment in all sorts of pathetic, empty places lately. Its crazy how I seem to think that being a Bible camp counselor and a youth director will automatically give me spiritual strength and health, but in truth I have felt so dry and full of guilt for the stupid things I've done lately, that I have detested those very titles and positions. I can't find what I am looking for in a sinful life. I can't find what I'm looking for in another person. But thank God, I am finally realizing what I've known all along, the only fulfilling intimacy, the only joy I will find is in my Fathers arms, he alone holds true intimacy. I just have to choose to go to him, and hallelujah, he's already running to me.

Saturday, July 02, 2005

I shot the Sheriff, but i did not shoot the deputy (don't worry, they're only air soft guns).

Monday, May 23, 2005


How I long to hold your hand,
I don't think you understand...,
worn out photo in my hand
of you and I together

We've been apart for so long,
my heart sings sad, soft songs,
I thought you were my other half,
but God made me whole.

I wonder how your days go by
do you laugh, do you cry?
Do you miss me like I miss you,
Do you think of me when you hear a tune
through the static on the radio?

Why do the right things seem to hurt the most?
The pain haunts me as a ghost.
But I'll make it, and I'll boast,
"I'm whole, he leads me."

He takes me back to the joys.
Your soft, and sweet giggle,
and your smile,
They were shared with me for a while.

Through this all He's taught me so much.
Perhaps I'll learn to love again,
This chapter is done, but the story has no end.
The author of life wrote on until forever.

I hope you know I love you still,
I'll never regret a moment we had,
Thinking of you I shouldn't be sad,
I look at the worn out photo in my hand and smile.

Monday, May 16, 2005

I have an artastic blog for you to see

Hey, for those of you who read my blog, go check out my other blog entitled "Artastic". I decided that I'd post my art stuff there so that I can fill this blog with the things God is teaching me, or pictures of family and friends. I may put an occasional drawing in here, but most will be at Artastic. The address is www.tys-art.blogspot.com, or you can be smart, ignore what I just typed, visit my profile and access it from their. Wow, I am tired. I should sleep. First I am going to go read, because I am stupid that way. ah, good books, Narnia is very nice this time of year...

Sunday, May 15, 2005

My little friend

This is a drawing of one of my moms day care kids. I like the drawing, but i'm more proud of the photo, because i am a horrible photogragher, but it actually turned out good. He's a cute kid, he enjoys beating me up.

Luke 18:16
16But Jesus called the children to him and said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.

 Posted by Hello

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

This is my favorite piece of abstract expressionism. I call it "Angst against a painting" Its one of my favorite pieces of art, probably because i don't do stuff like it very often. ok, thats enough art for one day. I'll probably dip into my store house and pull out more of my stuff later. Posted by Hello

James looks angry, but he isn't, he's just doing his hulk impression, incredable isn't it? Posted by Hello

This is my drawing of Worship. In order to worship God, we need to give all of ourselves over to him; we need to hand over our hearts, our very lives and say, "Do as you wish Lord." Worship and Trust are tied very closely together, you can't worship without trust, and you can't trust without worship. Surrender is what binds them together. Posted by Hello

Thursday, April 21, 2005

i'm feeling very somthing right now

My emotions are goofy right now. I feel like a guy who just stepped in gurgling ucky brown stuff and ruined his new shoes, only to discover that its oil and realize that he's a millionare. Summer, finally feals like its here, and its a happy painful feeling. Today some of my friends left. It was hard to say goodbye, and there is still so many amazing people to say goodbye to, some of which i may not see until heaven. I love the comfort in that though, knowing that as a christian i never have to say goodbye. I am going to miss my family here at Prov. I have developed some amazing relationships. My brothers here mean the world to me, and the amazing young ladies here have taught me what it means to love them as my sisters in Christ. I couldn't have asked for a better experiance,God has been chipping away at me lots this year, forming me into somthing new. I got an email from pastor Mark this morning. It was just a friendly encouragement in preparation for whats to come this summer. it made me excited. I have that summer feeling deep within me now. its strange. Its the feeling like I'm leaving Bible camp and saying goodbye to everyone, but its mixed with the feeling you have when you hop off the bus, taking in a deep breath and the excitement of arriving at camp, not knowing what exactly comes next. I'm glad i don't know whats next, I am so excited. Maybe my stories will be able to compete with Andrew Krahns next year. Oh to swap stories with everyone of what God has done in all of our summers, I can't wait! I can't wait to go smudging with Danna...

Saturday, April 16, 2005

empty handed

I took your photos from my wall and from my shelves.
Your smiling face no longer rests in my wallet.
today i gave you back to the one you belong to. I told him, "You can have her God, she's yours"
even though i didn't want to.
I was afraid if i gave you back, you'd never be mine again.
you were never mine though i thought you were.
I told you, "you got my heart"
when it wasn't mine to give.
I miss you like you were mine,
and i wish you were, but i forsake my first love.
We forsake our first love.
I don't know where this will leave us.
Maybe God's brought you on to that next step.
Maybe you've found that hand that fits yours.
God gave me the memories, but I'll give you up.
I need some time with my first love.
I'll be praying for you, that God will send you Prince Charming
who will catch you when you fall, who will tell you your're beautiful,
and listen to your every word,
who will be willing to die for you and love you less than God,
but more than himself

Thursday, April 14, 2005

see the children

so i got the youth pastor job. I am pretty pumped about the whole thing slash scared, but scared in a good way...not a bad. yesterday i watched a documentary made by three college guys. Its called Invisible Children. If you ever get the chance, please watch this film. In my opinion, every middle-upper class American christian should have the responsibility of seeing this film. Wow, how ignorant i was. this film is about the children in Sudan and Uganda and how the civil war in Sudan is brutally affecting them. Children are being abducted and forced to work in the army. children 14 and under are forced to take guns and brainwashed to kill people. one child said that he would get headaches if he didn't see blood. It was so depressing and sad. war is all they know. many are orphans because AIDs has attacked the land as well. none, it seems, live with parents because they either run from home to avoid being abducted into the army or they are are taken by the army. many have no clothes, no food, no home. the movie showed drawings that the children did. every drawing had death, blood, severed limbs, sadness. this is all these children know. It ripped my heart out. the screen became blury as tears filled my eyes. I went on a walk after the movie. the sun was shining. houses and cars all around. christian friends taking breaks from studies to throw the football or play in the mud. I forget how greatly i am blessed. how selfish am I! I spend all the time thinking of myself when that is not my right. I hope that through being a youth pastor, I can trully demonstrate selflessness. I hope those images never leave my mind. Its my prayer that i become sensitized to the world and that i learn to give food to the hungry, clothes to the needy, drink to the thirsty, that i visit those in prison, and that i bring love to all

Saturday, April 09, 2005

don't be spam mail

1 Wow! how flippin awesome it is for those
who don’t take bad advise from jerks,
Or kill time by chilling with the wrong crowd, letting them do their thing,
Or join in roast fests with bullies.

2 Instead, obedience to God is what floats their boat. Constantly His word is jogging through their minds, day and night.

3They are like the energizer bunny, they just keep going and going, never failing. Their batteries don’t die. They go strong and prosper; all they do is prime.

4 This isn’t the case for the punks. They are like spam mail that gets deleted without a look.

5 They’ll get what’s coming to them on Judgment day. Their tickets are void in the stadium of the godly.

6 The Lord has got his eye on those who are obedient to him, but those who aren’t are playing Russian roulette with a loaded gun.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Driving on dims

God taught me something last night as I talked to a friend. I never thought of myself as a worrier, in fact, I always thought I did a pretty good job of staying away from worrying. I have recently realized that I've been wrong. I am a worrier, but today I am at peace. A thing My friend and I talked about last night is how our human nature is all about the question "Why?" when it comes to listening to God, when God often only wants to give us the "What". For instance, I do believe that God has told me to take this position as a youth pastor, and the question in my head is a loud Why? God hasn't answered that question yet, and I really don't know if or when he will. He has revealed the What, and that's all I really need to know. Am I going to trust him? Am I going to accept this what and let him handle the why. I think we are all like people driving with only our parking lights on in the pitch black of night when it comes to listening to God. We can only see four feet in front of us and we are scared of crashing. Yet God sees the whole road and He's telling us where to go, telling us to simply trust and see where he leads. Let me assure you that the road has wild life scampering across, is covered in pot holes and even a couple road blocks, but God sees them all and just tells us to keep on driving and to listen to him. He enjoys his role as navigator. I am glad he is the navigator, I never was good with directions anyway.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Identify yourself

I had a revelation the other day. I realized that my "about me" in my profile was very negative. This is what it said:

I am a 19 year old Christian guy, and I am a failure. I am ok with that. I screw up all the time, but Jesus loves me anyway and chooses to use me...

Now I guess most of the stuff I wrote was pretty good stuff to say, but I introduced myself as a failure. That was wrong of me.

I did a Sunday school class at the church I was asked to be youth pastor at (and yes, I did say yes to the position) and the lesson I did was on False identity. We discussed the things we often Identify ourselves with such as the things we are good at, or not so good at, the way we look, the people we hang out with, what we have or don't have, and what other people say about us. For example, we may identify ourselves as jocks, nerds, geeks, skaters, preps, goths,...You get the picture, because those are the things we do, and who we hang out with. We may think of ourselves as ugly or beautiful, funny or stupid, beaus that is what people call us. We may think of ourselves as rich or poor, or someone else as rich or poor, and because we are on different financial levels, we can't be friends. Now I got to give credit where credit is do, I found an article in Youth Worker Journal that helped me out tons. I examined the story of the Temptation of Christ as an attack on Jesus' Identity. The more I looked at the passage, I would have to agree. The first temptation Jesus faced was turning stone to bread. My New testament Prof once pointed out how much turning stone into bread could be a huge bonus for the messiah. He could approach starving people, desperate for food, pick up a couple of stones and feed them bread compliments from God. Just think of the following. He would be accepted by these people instantly. But Jesus didn't want to be acknowledged as Messiah for what he could do. He didn't want people to follow him so they could have full stomachs.

Second, Jesus was tempted to throw himself off of the highest point of the temple. After all, Satan said, if he truly was whom he claimed to be, the angels would catch him before he struck a toe to the ground. The temple was the place to be. This was where the Jewish people were at. If you casually glanced up and saw a man jumping off the temple, you probably wouldn't say..."gee, I hope he packed his parachute..." You would probably flip out and then flip out even more when he pulls his heavenly e-brake with the angels. That would prove he was the Messiah. News would spread like cream cheese on a bagel. But that's not what Jesus wanted to be identified for. He didn't have to prove anything.

Third, Satan offered Jesus all the nations of the world if he would just bow before him. This temptation is so huge because this is what the Jewish people were looking for; a king. If Jesus controlled all the nations of the world, he would be the leader, the Messiah, they desired. He would be able to conquer the Romans who were lording it over them. But this was not where Jesus found his Identity.

He did not find it in what he could do, turning a couple of stones into bread didn't do it for him. He did not find it in jumping off of a temple, he didn't really care what the people at the temple would say about him, that was quite obvious in his later ministry. He did not find it in what he could have. Being the earthly king of all the nations, ruling in power, and defeating the Romans wasn't his desire.

So what did Jesus find his Identity in? Simply who he knew was, who his Father said he was. He knew he was the Messiah, and that he didn't have to prove it. He didn't want people to follow him out of convenience, or popularity, or simply because they had to. He wanted people to follow him then, just as he does now, out of commitment.

So where do we find our identity? In Christ. If we have asked Christ into our lives we are Christians, and that is our Identity. We aren't sinners, we are saints. Our Identity has very little to do with us, but everything to do with Christ.

I did this lesson again a couple of times for some other youth groups. One day at lunch the kitchen staff put a bunch of really lame toys all over the tables. I love it when they do that, only I eat a lot slower on those days. Anyway, they had all these little plastic compasses laying on the table, and I thought to myself, how lame, they are all pointing in different directions. I decided to collect them because I was bored, so I got about thirty of them off of other tables. Later I discovered that they make a very good illustration for false identity. I handed them out to the youth in the group I was teaching and told them that the compass was thier false identity. Sure they looked like compasses, and a compass is supposed to point you in the right direction. But these compasses were crap. They didn't point in the right direction, they were misleading, they didn't even have magnets in them. Make Christ your compass, and he will always point straight.

my false compass was failure. This is why I had to change my "about me". I identified myself as a failure, but I'm not. I am a Christian, God's tool. It is a dangerous thing when a Christian thinks he or she is a failure. God has called me to a task. I am to be a youth pastor this summer, and I know that I am not ready for this. Luckily, Christ is, and my identity is in him.

No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.--Romans 8:37

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Confused and ok

Feelings are confusing

play with You like hot wheels cars on loops of hard plastic

I just can't tell when i am right side up anymore.

Sometimes my feelings scream so loud, i just wish they'd shut up

Its so hard to hear You over myself

Saying one thing and doing another

Like a green chameleon turned red

Is this the way its going to be?

Why do i betray You?

why do I kiss Your face so coldly

I'd give up the gray for black and white any day

I choose to starve myself

when You offer honey on my lips

I ignore my best friend

I've become blind, deaf and mute

rub the mud in my eyes

cast out these demons

let me hear Your voice,

I'll eat once again

I'm running, running to You

when i trip and fall on those shoelaces i forgot to tie up,

You catch me

You always love me just the same

You always catch me when i fall

Thursday, January 20, 2005

I got the youth part down, i'm still working on the Pastor

This is a bit different from the majority of my blogs, I am posting a prayer request. Right before Christmas I got an e-mail from a Pastor friend back home asking me to do part time youth Ministry at his church, at least that is what I thought he was asking. I didn't really know what that meant, so I didn't think much about it and I decided I'd get back to him about it. Well time went by and I still hadn't said a thing to him, but finally we talked just recently and I discovered that he wants me to actually be the youth pastor of his church. I am absolutely scared spitless! I don't know what I should do, so I am praying hard,...Whatever that means. I don't know if this is a position I should take. Its a huge opportunity, but would I be cheating the youth out of someone more qualified and more suitable for the position if I took it? Is this where God wants me? Its my dream and it could come true a lot sooner than I originally intended. I don't know if I am capable of such a task. I still have three and a half years of youth ministry training ahead of me, maybe more. What happens when one of the youth breaks an arm while I'm in charge, or when a kid tells me of his or her suicidal thoughts and I don't know how to react, or when one of the youth gets pregnant, or when I get threatened by a parent, or I don't have the support I need. What happens when a kid becomes excited in bible study, when youth reach out to their community, when someone accepts Christ for the first time, when a parent thanks me for the influence I've been. I am still a youth myself. I want to be obedient to God no matter what the call, but I still don't know what that call is. Please pray. This is the biggest decision I have ever had to make.

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

... Posted by Hello

Go OperaKor! Posted by Hello

OperaKor; the band that isn't a band that your glad isn't a band

Operakor hasn't created anymore art for quite the while. for those of you who don't know, Operakor is my band. we aren't a real band, just a fake one. I guess you would call us, experimental improv acoustic heavy-metal screamo with the lightest hint of Opera. it consists of me, as lead vocalist and our two guitarists Jeremy, who sometimes does vocals as well, and Eric who sometimes bangs on a ice cream pale when we feel the need for some slammin percussion beats. we had a really awesome drummer, Nick, when we made our mockumentry back in 11th grade (hence the crazy cool dude with the hair in the photo), but thats before we moved to a more acoustic, less opera sound. One time we played in a parking lot and people threw a few nickles at us. Maybe they were aiming for our eyes. Another time we played in a elevator, only that was me and a couple other dudes. never mind, i lied, that wasn't operakor. It was still pretty funny though, we put our own money in the guitar case to make it look like people were giving us cash. it didn't work very well,...sigh, but one lady looked at us really weird and i luaghed a lung out. then they took me to the hospital and did a lung transplant so now i am ticking strong again. So yeah, this is what my friends and I do for fun when we aren't lighting things on fire or thrifting. For future fun, i hope to learn to dance like Napolean. that would be flippin awesome, and would make all my dreams come true.

Hugged by nail pierced hands

My goodness, I miss Tina so much some times. Its hard to believe that we've been apart for over 4 months, yet I still miss her so much. Some things in life are really hard to understand. I think its pretty clear that Tina and I had to break up in order to put Christ first, but the thing I don't understand is why does it have to hurt so bad? Why do I still struggle at putting Christ first. For far to long, I have been seeking my own ways of escaping my hurt, but they only bring me deeper into the pit of despair. Like the prodigal son, I realize that I must run back to my Father. This is what blows me away, as I run towards him, my feet pounding the dust, tired and weary, through the dirty and knotted hair that hangs draping over my eyes, I see him running towards me.

20"So he returned home to his father. And while he was still a long distance away, his father saw him coming. Filled with love and compassion, he ran to his son, embraced him, and kissed him. --Luke 15:20

Why would he run to me, I am supposed to be running to him, pleading for mercy. Instead he runs to me, and hugs me, his nail- scarred hands pulling me close. I don't understand how God could ever love me that much, but though I don't understand it, I am drawn to it. I want to serve my Lord. Though I so often fail, I will get up again, brush the dirt away and follow him.

Once Peter betrayed Jesus, his Lord, while he hung on the cross. Like Peter, We too have betrayed Christ. Though Jesus has already appeared to him and the other disciples twice, it was a morning that Peter was out fishing with some of the other disciples that Peter truly was changed by Christ. I don't know what it was that drew Peter out to fish that morning, A speaker at school thought maybe he was returning to his old career of being a fisherman once again. Perhaps he thought that since he had failed at being Christ's Fisher of Men, maybe he could at least reel in a few fish. Since he had betrayed Christ, three times no less, maybe he thought he wasn't good enough for Jesus' service anymore. I don't know, but this I do: Jesus thought differently. He stood on the beach of Galilee that morning and looked out on a boat in the distance filled with his exhausted disciples.

5He called out, "Friends, have you caught any fish?"
"No," they replied.
6Then he said, "Throw out your net on the right-hand side of the boat, and you'll get plenty of fish!" So they did, and they couldn't draw in the net because there were so many fish in it.
7Then the disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, "It is the Lord!" When Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put on his tunic (for he had stripped for work), jumped into the water, and swam ashore. 8The others stayed with the boat and pulled the loaded net to the shore, for they were only out about three hundred feet.[
c] 9When they got there, they saw that a charcoal fire was burning and fish were frying over it, and there was bread.
10"Bring some of the fish you've just caught," Jesus said. 11So Simon Peter went aboard and dragged the net to the shore. There were 153 large fish, and yet the net hadn't torn.
12"Now come and have some breakfast!" Jesus said. And no one dared ask him if he really was the Lord because they were sure of it. 13Then Jesus served them the bread and the fish.--
John 21:5-13

Then as they had ate there fill of bread and fish and sat around the fire enjoying the company of their friend and their Lord as they had not long ago, Jesus asked Peter a question...

15After breakfast Jesus said to Simon Peter, "Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?"
"Yes, Lord," Peter replied, "you know I love you."
"Then feed my lambs," Jesus told him.
16Jesus repeated the question: "Simon son of John, do you love me?"
"Yes, Lord," Peter said, "you know I love you."
"Then take care of my sheep," Jesus said.
17Once more he asked him, "Simon son of John, do you love me?"
Peter was grieved that Jesus asked the question a third time. He said, "Lord, you know everything. You know I love you."
Jesus said, "Then feed my sheep.--
John 21:15-17

The reason that I give this passage is that Peter just like you and I, like the prodigal son, had blown it. He retreated back to his familiar and comfortable life of fishing, thinking that I am no longer good enough for Christ. But that is when Christ gave him his mission. "Feed my sheep." The truth is that no mater what we've done, what road we've traveled, what we've been through, Jesus wants us back. In times of hardship, its easy to run in the wrong direction. In Peter's tough spot, he denied Christ. My tough situation here is not being able to call the girl I love my own any longer, and like Peter, I have denied Christ with my lifestyle. I have pursued false comforts from the pain separate from his true comfort. I have ignored his voice and I have lived for myself. But like Peter, Christ is telling me, "feed my sheep" and like the Prodigal son, God is running to me with open arms.

Peter lived a pretty rough life from that point on. He suffered for the sake of Christ. The thing is, he rejoiced in his suffering, and never denied his lord again. Our lives will be rough as well, that's just the nature of living. We still must rejoice in the pain, stop worrying what the future has in store, and put our trust in the one who knows us better than we do. Run to him as he runs to you.

I'm not above trying to understand, I'm not above trying to take your hand, I'm not above, I'm not above....You know me better than I do, it's better if you lead the way!--Further Seems Forever (the best band ever)