Sunday, November 25, 2007

Photo Friday on Saturday Night

I almost forgot. Well, pretty much I did. But after 9 hours of sitting on your hump and listening to music or otherwise, you pretty much have time to remember anything, including Friday Photos. I was able to get quite a bit of shooting in this week-- about 300 shots (plus or minus a few). But thanks to Black Friday and generous parents, I have a new 500 gig hard-drive to store them all-- an early Christmas gift.

These shots are of my best friend, Michael, who's moved back to Tulsa in July. We got to go to Turkey Mountain a couple times and I took my camera the second and got some pretty cool shots.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007


I've been back in the house that I grew up in since Friday night and it's been a wonderful blessing to me, even though I'm staying in the guest bedroom. My (old) room, currently, has all the furniture pushed to the middle of the room, no bed and wreaks of fresh paint. If I was able to stay in there, I would sure sleep well.

My best friend from high school, Michael, moved back to town a few months ago and we've been hanging out. We used to do anything that could be designated "Xtreme" without the first "e." So we've gone mountain biking a couple times and I got some shots of him the last time we were out. I visited his work and saw the plant he oversees. We played ping pong best 2 out of 3 and I won all three.

My dad and I were able to get out to the Golf Club on Saturday and play 9 holes. I played the first 7 great--for me-- but lost my concentration on the last two. I got hungry and from then on that's all I could think about.

I need to get a paper written and I think I'm to the point that I can actually write. (I tried yesterday, but I needed more time to think-- but once I get that introduction...)

Friday, November 16, 2007

Friday Photo

This week's been crazy busy and I don't have any new photos yet. But I'm going home today and I'll be able to shoot like crazy and hopefully get some good mountain biking shots while I'm there. I am excited about playing with this girl and hanging out with my family for the week. Be praying for safe travel as I'm driving somewhere in the neighborhood of 12 hours and 700 miles.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Catching Up

I've been extremely busy with school the last week and a half. Papers are beginning to be thought of-- some close to being written. All the work that I had been working through slowly is needing a few extra efforts to get back on track. Books need to be read. Passages need to be translated.

Right now, I'm working mainly in Ephesians, doing the worksheet and eventually translating. It's the only real class that I have to attend each week. I'd never spent much time in Ephesians-- enough for it to really affect my life, at least, but it's beginning to sneak in-- in my prayers especially. It's giving me language to express my heart, my emotions. It teaches me what God has done for me, even though I deserve none of it. It's really quite amazing. Reading about how we were once dead in our sins, focused on the physical world around us and being oppressed by the spirit of the age, you feel the weight with which we need to be redeemed. And then Paul puts for three little words, transliterated ha de theos. In English, it comes across in two: But God. Think about that for a moment. But. God. With stark contrast to the preceding three verses, Paul lets us know that despite our situation, God has broken in and done something amazing, that while we were dead in our sins, he has made us alive in Christ.

Klyne made the point simply: "Never forget that the Gospel is theocentric." In other words, God is at the center of the Gospel, not us.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Friday Photo

Prank Originally uploaded by notashamed

A busy week this week meant that not too much time was had for photos. But since one of my roommates left for a few days, we had to do something to his room. I went out and got 150 balloons and we blew them up to about 18" round. After 5 popping as we herded them through the hallway and into his bedroom, 145 balloons only filled 1/3 of the room. Turns out it made the point.

Also, this photo got picked up for Gaper's Block Rearview-- a Chicago web-publication.

My Photography || Flickr Friday Photo

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

New Gmail

I must say I was very excited to hear about Google's Gmail being updated. I knew they could only make it better.

Well, I was completely wrong. The new version runs slower and way more clunkier. They obviously have many bugs to still work out, but they should have gotten those done before they went live with it.

There's still the option to use the old version, but you have to click on it every time you open it.

Or this is all due to North Park's slower than 1983 internet. Seriously.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Thailand Slideshow

Although it's not Friday, I figured I could still put up some photos. I've been wanting to post my pictures from Thailand for some time now, and while still not all of them have been "developed" I think all the ones really worth showing off have been.

Please enjoy.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Book: Why Men? (Ch 1)

Last week we went started taking a look at David Murrow's book Why Men Hate Going to Church? Now we're moving into chapter 1.

Murrow starts out with a "case study"-- which I use loosely-- about a man named Cliff. He's a hard worker, fishes, loves his wife and kids, drives a four-wheeler, enjoys cold beer, dirty jokes and doesn't go to church. Murrow argues that guys like Cliff are practicing their own religion called Masculinity [He uses this term a lot, but has yet to really define it]. Murrow quotes two men, notably Charles Spurgeon, who says, "There has got abroad a notion, somehow, that if you become a Christian you must sink your manliness and turn milksop." Christianity and masculinity do not go together [as popularly perceived].

Is Church a women's thing? On the outset, Jesus, a man, founded the Church with 12 male disciples and, to our knowledge the whole of the NT is written by men. Today when you look at the pastorate most are males. However, when we begin to look at the congregation, the majority are women. Further, those who are volunteering and most involved are women. Murrow offers this sad statement: "the only man who actually practices his faith is the pastor."

He argues that this affects the women as much as men.

The men we do find in church are not the "manly men" like Cliff (see above), but instead are "humble, tidy, dutiful, and above all, nice." This is a contrast with those men we see in the Bible-- Moses, Elijah, David, Daniel, Peter, and Paul [and Jesus?]. They were "men who risked everything in service to God...They had an intense commitment to God, and they weren't what you called saintly."

Murrow states that this is a book written for laywomen. He asks if they will allow men to take risks, dream big, push the envelope.

I ask this: Murrow states that one "cannot have a thriving church without a core of men who are true followers of Christ." Is this true? Why or why not?

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Eating Chicago

I have a new blog. It's about me eating in Chicago. I finally got a substantial post in, so I'm advertising a little.

Please enjoy.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Music: José Gonzalez

I posted the following about a month ago, but was reminded of José Gonzalez's musical genius by last night's Scrubs. He has a new CD out In Our Nature. Below is the old post and the video that accompanied it-- Heatbeats-- the song that was featured last night, a Sony Bravia commercial, and the original version by The Knife.

I ran into Jose Gonzalez via my roommate, Wired and the web. Amazing stuff, especially if you like soft acoustics-- Ray LaMontagne and Andrew Bird. Ah, and Gonzalez's new CD comes out tomorrow.

Friday Photo

Yellow Leaf
Originally uploaded by notashamed

Well, I only have one photo today and I already posted it a few days ago. It's one of those beautiful leaves that you find this time of year.

I want to remind you that I'm doing some printing of my pictures, so if you would like any it's $3 for a 4x6 and $6 for an 8x10, plus a few extra for shipping (bigger sizes are available, just ask). Head on over to my Flickr and pick some out, then shoot me an email.

My Photography || Flickr Friday Photos

Thursday, November 1, 2007

The English Language

Something that's bothered me for a long time and I have no idea how to construct grammatically is the first person plural possessive in English. Our is the way to do it with a pronoun, but what about no pronoun.

Jeff and my...
Jeff's and my...
Jeff's and my's....
Jeff and our...
Jeff and our's...
Does anyone know how to solve this conundrum?

Book: Why Men?

There's a book case behind the reference section in the library at North Park that holds the yearbooks from classes past. As this has no interest to me, the top of the hobbit-sized shelf is where I float over to when I'm looking to put off the necessary reading at hand. See, it is here that the newest books that have come into this compendium of knowledge start and I oft find something to divert my attention from my task at hand.

This week there were a couple books that caught my eye and one that I thought would be interesting to walk through on the blog. David Murrow, a Presbyterian (USA) from Alaska, who has had his hand in producing anything from the Discovery Channel to Dr. Phil, has put out a book entitled Why Men Hate Going To Church. I'll be honest, I've never heard of the guy, but I thought his book would be an interesting read no matter. It seems to look at facts and statistics, rather than our inner drive as men-- at least that's the appearance.

Murrow says that he's often wondered about why men hate going to church. He's seen it in all denominations. Those that do attend he states are "passive, bored or uneasy" (vii). How was a faith that had been started by a Man and entrusted to 12 men, so lacking in men today? As he looked around for answers, he didn't find any at the local Christian bookstore, so he decided to write the book himself. He claims neither to be pastor nor theologian, just a regular guy in the pews who is struggling to find his place in church (viii).

Before we delve into Murrow's search for the answer, what is the consensus of why men don't go or hate going to church? What has been your experience with men and church?