Friday, January 29, 2010

Of goods and sundry

Well for starters, its Friday! This weekend is what is being called by many "man weekend". A bunch of us are headed to Chase's farm house to ride 4-wheelers, play football like B. Favre and his friends in the Wrangler commercials, and shoot clay I told Danny I'm going to shoot him with bird shot from a fare distance away. I missed this weekend last year. Well, I wouldn't say I missed it exactly, but I wasn't there. Carver was just a week old at the time.

By the way, Chase lives in The Sudan working for Samaritan's Purse. We get him for just a couple weeks a year...otherwise he'd have to pay taxes.

So for an update to my last post, all seeds of bitterness towards said employer have been burnt up in a fire. Now it is spring flowers. He makes all things new indeed. Amen and amen!

In other news, I am on a campaign to not feel older than my age anymore. I have been doing crossfit endurance workouts on a somewhat regular basis, and I am JACKED AND PUMPED ABOUT GETTING JACKED AND PUMPED BRO! AMIRITE?! POUND IT BRO!

And to really make this one of the most random posts ever, my 2010 list of goals, in no particular order...

- Run a half marathon or an Olympic length tri-athlon,
- get excellent marks in PA school,
- finish my thesis (this is by May),
- have normal cholesterol levels,

Monday, January 25, 2010

Life...or...Why I need the Gospel

The Gospel is hard. Or at least I should say, if the gospel means suffering with Christ, and allowing Christ to suffer for other people, then the gospel is hard. Over the last couple weeks I have been treated pretty poorly at work, and at least from my perspective have not been communicated with well or respectfully and have been somewhat misrepresented to the powers that be. At the same time I was cut to 20 hours because of "cut backs". The hardest part is not that we are missing half my income, but that if I am to live a life worthy of the gospel of Christ, I am supposed to forgive them. I'm supposed to let the perfect Messiah suffer in their place. If I don't, surely I don't deserve His suffering in my place.
The most striking realization I've had of this came Saturday night. Carver has been sick and was up almost the entire night, unconsolably crying. At one point I got so frustrated that I had to just set him down in his crib and walk away. I was extremely frustrated with a one year old who cannot control how he feels when he gets sick or his perspective on when the symptoms will end. If I can get that angry with my incredible, perfect son, I need the gospel more than any of you.
The gospel does not come down to making wrongs right, it comes down to the unjust being completely justified. This is why the world has a problem with the gospel. It does not fit well in our current system.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010


There are so many ways to wonder about this earthquake and why something so unbelievably devastating can happen to someplace already so devastated. I am just mourning for Haiti. If you want to keep up with what my friends who live there think of what's going on, I'm posting links to their blogs below. We have no idea how terrible this actually is. If God is both good and sovereign we cannot fathom what His justice and final redemption of creation really will be like. I cannot imagine what goes on in a child's heart and mind in Haiti today.
Here are their blogs:

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Cold blooded blogging

That has to be the problem. As the temperature drops, so does the rate at which I write blog posts. Actually, I have just been really busy. Let me do you the disservice of "catching you up", which is to say, tell you what's been going on without giving you the interesting details.
Haiti was incredible.
When I got there I could not stop thinking about how amazed I am that the Americans that are there long-term are there long-term. It is a hard place. By the time I left I realized that i could be there long term if my family was with me. The reason I went, if you recall was to assess whether or not Lespwa could develope some kind of tilapia production system to either 1) feed the orphans and alleviate their anemia, 2) feed the orphans and the school's students and alleviate their anemia, or 3) feed the orphans, the students, and sell some fish to other villagers to help alleviate anemia, maybe create a job or two, and maybe start to develop a little economy in Mesaye. The highlights of the trip for me were: *being near/around orphans (expounded upon below)*, meeting the other people on the trip, wonderful friends that I wish I lived with on a cul-de-sac, perspective of life in Haiti, Haitian people, Creole, and the farm we saw that looked more like a farm in Cuba than Haiti. (Did you know Cuba has a really incredible agriculture system?)
Christmas was great!
I can't tell you how excited I was to get back to Valerie and Carver. We spent the days surrounding Christmas in Tampa. I am in love with Valerie's family. They have each become so special to me, and I love sharing the holidays with them.
For New Year's weekend we went to merritt Island to be with my family where we had our Christmas. It was awesome. We always make a huge deal out of the food, and no one dissapointed. Ayden got me ladderball and my folks got me a Wake Forest hoodie. I'm super pumped about both, but I'm kind of affraid to wear the hoodie around Gainesville because I can imagine someone just like me yelling out there car window, "Why don't you go there if you like it so much!?" And I'd be like, "Gators wear jean shorts!" And the guy would never know it was meant as a compliment.
Gainesville is great.
And cold! It may snow tonight! It is hard knowing this is our last semester in Gainesville for at least 2 years. I want to say that I am firmly confident that we'll be back here. We want to be in Florida. We love being in a college town. With that said, though, my other goal in the next 2 years, and in the next 60 years for that matter, is to do a better job of discerning and obeying what God wants me to do. He does put our desires in our hearts, though.
Well, I guess that's a sufficient catching up. I'd like to really get my thoughts down about Haiti sometime soon. It would be a shame to let any of what I experienced be forgotten. If you are ever interested in going to Haiti and helping out, this aquaculture project may eventually need some hands to get started.
For now, thanks for reading. I'll look forward to posting more this semester since I'm not in school full time.

(The orphans standing in front of a cargo container that was washed into the compound during the Mesaye flood on Sept. 7th, 2008.)
*As mentioned above, being around orphans was really challenging for me. Not challenging in the sense that it is hard to be around orphans, but that it challenged my perception of orphans before I went. In a few thoughts, they are very independent for their age. They have no one to rely on, so they make do...emotionally, physically, socially, and I'm assuming mentally and spiritually, other than what they get from the Americans that live there and their house mom. I love these boys. There are 12 of them, and it is so hard to look at each of them and realize that they do not have a dad. It is so unspeakably unfair that they don't get a dad. I cannot tell you how many times this thought went through my head while I was in Haiti. They are better off than most Haitian kids in their provision, because they are at this orphanage. But they don't have a dad or a mom, and that is and was so hard for me to process. The only place I can turn is to a deep deep aching and hoping that God is good, sovreign, and just.
By the way, if you would like an illustration for how God can possible be good, sovereign, and just in a world that contains orphans, read "The Man Who Was Thursday" by G.K. Chesterton.