Friday, August 31, 2007

August Blogger Awards

August saw 54 BBC Blogs Updated
Remember September 4th is BBC Blogging Day
Here are the nominations for posts of the month

Steph on God's Immutability
Elizabeth's Cold Cat
Lindy's Top 10 TV Shows
Dave's RobBELLion
Jessica's Fling with Fall
Kelly's Trouble/Trimph of 2

The Blogger of the Month Award Goes to AJ. I really like reading about his church visits. Though AJ has had plenty of nominations for 'post of the month,' this is, according to my records, his first award for blogger of the month.

January: Elizabeth S
February: Kirk P
March: Kirk P
April: Elizabeth S
May: Steph P
June: Julie M
July: Mark B
August: AJ T

Thursday, August 30, 2007

#8 Add On

The long lost series on the 10 Commandments of Blogging is back. Just 3 Weblog laws left! So far we've discussed...

#1 Pick a Platform
#2 Win the Name Game
#3 Find your True Colors
#4 Hit Your Target
#5 Be Consistent
#6 Comment Unto Others
#7 Think Themes

The 8th Commandment of blogging is 'thou shalt add on.' Quality text is the stuff of a great blog, but the best blogs have some useful 'add-ons' that add value to the extended site experience. But first a note of caution: Just because you CAN add something to your blog, doesn't mean you SHOULD! Let me give you a for instance: When I was first getting started in the blogosphere, I found out that ESPN offered a ticker add-on that would flash live scores at the top of my blog. That sounded cool, but it wasn't what my blog was about. Don't add just anything.

So what SHOULD you add? My advice is to think of Add-ons like makeup on a girl. Makeup shouldn't be attention grabbing, but discreet. Some girls wear way too much makeup in general, or really go overboard in 1 particular area. The same problem exists with blog add-ons. Some people simply have too many. Others just have add-ons that are too bulky. Add-ons, like makeup, are best when they make a subtle yet positive difference. (Think about how myspace was ruined by add-ons, and facebook 'applications' are putting it in danger as well)

There are hundreds of potential add-ons. I actually have 7 items that could be considered add-ons. Each one has a subtle and important purpose. First, under my heading I have the alphabet. Each letter is a link to a site I visit often. Hardly noticeable, but highly useful. Obviously that is a self-made add-on. Second & third, I have 2 link lists which are used by dozens of people on a daily basis. Fourth, fifth, sixth & seventh are all 'stat' add-ons (we'll discuss stats later) including the interesting cluster map, a hit counter, an overall stat-keeper, and a online users update. These add-ons are mostly for my own benefit, but can be used to build momentum for your blog.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

1000 POSTS

It's hard to believe this is my 1000th post. It seems like only 842 posts ago that my blog was born. I thought about celebrating by listing some of my favorite posts, but I do that on my blog's birthday & at the end of each year already. Instead, I think I'll just take this moment to declare that blogging is great. It has made me a better writer & thinker. It has made me more consistent and focused. It has given me new friends and skills. The 1st 1000 has been fun!

It's amazing to think how much my life will probably change by the time I reach 2000 posts. Who knows what's in store? We'll find out together right here! (Technically, you'll find out after me, but usually within 24 hours).

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

1 More Week

Just 1 more week until BBC BLOGGING DAY! I'm so excited to start this tradition. I'm setting the goal for this year at 33. It's a small, attainable goal. Simply put, 33 BBC'ers need to post to their blog on September 4th. To reach this goal I need your help. Tell all your friends on the link list about BBC Blogging Day! You have 1 week.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Doerfel Family

We had another bluegrass concert last night. The Doerfel's were back and this time they brought Goldwing Express with them. Very fun concert. Here's a youtube of a newish Doerfel song.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Funny Sunday

Friday will be the 31st and the Blogger Awards, so I better get my Funny Friday in now

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Houghton College

Props to Houghton College for their recent surge in increasing positive church relations. As I posted, I enjoyed the extremely affordable 'preaching workshop' a couple months back. Now I see 2 more events on the calendar that I'm very interested in attending. On September 11th, Derek Webb, one of my favorite musicians will be in concert and I'm hoping I can convince my MOST group that it's an event worth attending. Then, September 19th, my favorite Christian speak Ravi Zacharias will be speaking followed by a faculty panel discussion of apologetics. The September 19th event is completely free to pastors and church leaders, so I'll be taking 3 members of our church with me.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

All-Time TV

I'm updating my list of 'Top 10' All-Time TV Shows. There have been some changes based on recent episodes viewed (both positive and negative). For example, 'The Office' continues to climb the charts because of its re-watch-ability while 'All in the Family' climbed higher until last night when I watched some poor episodes from its last season. 'The Simpsons' drops completely off the list b/c I thought the movie was dumb and haven't cared to see a new episode in years.
  1. Seinfeld
  2. The Office
  3. Frasier
  4. Dick Van Dyke
  5. Gilmore Girls
  6. All in the Family
  7. Lost
  8. Cheers
  9. Little House on the Prairie
  10. American Idol

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

True Comedy

FULL ARTICLE In one of history's more absurd acts of totalitarianism, China has banned Buddhist monks in Tibet from reincarnating without government permission...the law effectively gives Chinese authorities the power to choose the next Dalai Lama...At 72, the Dalai Lama, who has lived in India since 1959, is beginning to plan his succession, saying that he refuses to be reborn in Tibet so long as it's under Chinese control. Assuming he's able to master the feat of controlling his rebirth, as Dalai Lamas supposedly have for the last 600 years, the situation is shaping up in which there could be two Dalai Lamas: one picked by the Chinese government, the other by Buddhist monks.

Monday, August 20, 2007


Yesterday in our study through 'Acts,' our Sunday School class discussed the fact that the disciples were first called 'Christians' in Antioch. It got me to thinking, the disciples there must have been noticeably distinct to merit receiving a fresh title from the surrounding society, but that's another post for another time. It also got me to thinking about the name 'Christian' and what it communicates in our culture today.

Since most of North America claims to be 'Christian,' it's quite likely and obvious that the term has been watered down. So what are we to do about that? Here's where personalities come into play. Some (prominent Christian authors included) will say that we should jettison the term and replace it with something new. Others, however, believe we should 'strengthen what remains,' and fight for the worthiness of the name.

My question for you is, what word or short phrase do you think is best for describing those who truly belong to Jesus? Here are some possibilities. Please add to the list: Disciples, Christians, Believers, Followers of Christ, Followers of the Way, Born-Agains, Evangelicals, the Church, the True Church, Body of Christ...

Sunday, August 19, 2007


Don't Defend Yourself
Let Others Defend You
Defend Others

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Last Sin Eater

I just finished watching 'The Last Sin Eater.' As I mentioned before, I've been watching a lot of Christian films lately in hopes of using them as ministry tools. While this movie has its deficiencies, I still think it has some value in that regard. The story is about a young girl who wants freedom from her sin, but she lives in a cove that depends on an insufficient 'sin eater' to take away sins upon one's death. Through her quest for cleansing, many sins among the people are brought into the open, and the true sin-eater is discovered. Aside from a few scenes that should have been scrapped and an over-emphasis on one character that I assume came from converting a book into a movie, I generally liked the film.

Status: Worth the Time
Rating: 6.9

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Secret Service

One of Jesus' teachings that has most impacted me over the past couple years is His teaching about secret service. Prior to this, regretfully, I preferred to do 'good works' that word would get around about! It's not that the immediate reward of a job well done was my primary aim in doing good, but it was a great perk. More recently, however, I've been convicted by one of the most exciting principles of Jesus' teaching. The Principle of Secret Service is simply that one of our missions, as Christians, is to find 'good works' that we can do covertly. Our service is best when it's directed away from those who can reward us and toward those who have no such means.

Jesus recognized that many 'good works' are essentially arrangements of the following order: "You scratch my back, I'll scratch yours." But He commissioned His servants to seek out backs that can't scratch back. This type of service is a secret from those who would or can return favors. But sometimes, I've found, the person most interested in rewarding me for good works is ME! How many times in my past have I rewarded myself for doing a good deed? And so Jesus also teaches me to not allow my left hand to know what my right hand is doing. This principle is practiced when secret service flows naturally out of a heart of love, unmotivated by personal increase.

When we find ways to serve that aren't rewarded on this earth by men or by self, we store up treasures in heaven. That's an exciting aspect of the secret service I speak of. Good deeds WILL be rewarded, no matter what. It's just a matter of where and when. We can do good deeds that get rewarded now, or we can do good deeds that get rewarded later. We can get rewards from men or rewards from God. Nothing against your gift giving abilities, but I'm more interested in unwrapping God's gifts! For the Father, who sees what is done is secret, will reward you.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

2 Years Younger

One lady I visit each Wednesday had a birthday party today. She turned 97, or so she thought. At the nursing home her family & I were discussing her age and it turns out she's only 95. Whereas most of us worry we're getting old on our birthday, Doris got quite a bit younger! Her older sister, Hazel, was at the party as well. Hazel is 99. Both ladies are in good health. The oldest person in the world, currently, is 114. Who's the oldest person you know?

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The Radicals

I just finished watching 'The Radicals,' a film about the Anabaptists who faced persecution from both the Catholic & Protestant Churches. The film focused, in particular, on the role of Michael Sattler, an early Anabaptist leader.

When I ordered this movie a few weeks ago, I had assumed it was a more recent film. I was somewhat disappointed, initially, by the quality. But as the story progressed I became less aware of the low budget and more aware of powerful message that the Anabaptists proclaimed. I, being (I hope) an Anabaptist at heart, was inspired by Michael Sattler's conviction. Lots of inspiring lines toward the end of this movie, I recommend it whole-heartedly.

Status: Must Own
Rating: 8.1

Monday, August 13, 2007

Entering Blogdom 5

You know the drill...
Guess who's 1st post this is

i've never really kept a blog before. or done much with web pages or anything. i've been having fun getting this set up - learning some basic HTML so i could format my page. so far all i've done is some basic color and font changes. but it's fun to see what i'm learning transfer to the way the page looks.

Current Point Totals:
Kayla 2
Kelly 1
Joanna 1
Aaron P -1
Kirk -4

Sunday, August 12, 2007

What's Left?

Here are the books of the Bible that I have yet to teach thru:

OT: Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Judges, 2 Samuel, 1 & 2 Chronicles, Nehemiah, Psalms, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Habakkuk, Zephaniah

NT: Matthew, John, 1 & 2 Corinthians, Ephesians, Philippians, 1 & 2 Timothy, 3 John

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Meteor Shower

Last night we were having a children's sleepover at the church, but when the children went to their tents to sleep, some of the staff stayed out under the sky to watch the meteor shower. From midnight to 2am I managed to see about 25 'shooting stars.' Three of them were particularly beautiful. There's nothing much better than being outside on a nice night with good friends while watching the heavens declare the glory of God.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Barry Bonds

I don't have strong feelings about anything baseball related. In fact, if it weren't for the fact that my Great Grandfather played a couple years for the Red Sox, I probably wouldn't like baseball at all. But I must admit, my appreciation for the game has slowly developed into somethingness over the years. So while I'm not super passionate about this Barry Bonds 'issue,' I do have an opinion.

I like Barry Bonds. It's not that I think he's innocent (I'm sure he used steroids) or that I think he's misunderstood (I'm sure he's a bit of a jerk). I like him because he doesn't care if I like him. In an age where many athletes yearn to be media darlings, Barry doesn't give a rip what people think about him. At a time when athletes speak in boring cliche, I'm never quite sure what Bonds is going to say (or if he'll even say anything).

All this talk about putting an * next to his name in the record books is stupid. First of all, while it is pretty obvious that he used steroids, he's never failed a test. Second, it's Major League Baseballs fault for not being proactive on this issue earlier (they were loving every minute of the home-run races). Third, he's competing against players that are/were also on steroids (including pitchers). I've even heard some talk about Barry not being worthy of the Hall of Fame. That's ridiculous. He was a Hall of Fame worthy player even before he got muscular.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Introduction (F.K.D.H.)

Thanks for clicking your way to this online book. Some people never get passed the title. "My friend's won't touch it," one ascetic told me. "They hear the title and say, 'There's no way I would ever do that.'" One guy, from Wesleyan Publishing House, urged me to change the title. "People will be too embarrassed to buy that in a bookstore," he said. He's probably right, but since I French Kissed Dating Hello is only available online anyways, I don't see that as a problem!

I decided on this title because I want to be up front with you--there are some radical ideas on these web-pages. Most Christians books about dating are, well, against dating, even the one's that claim to be unique*. But these posts tell you how to live life and take romantic risks--even if that means you'll fall flat on your face from time to time.

So let me make a simple request. Just finish this paragraph. If nothing grabs you, that's fine. But I think you'll discover that something in this online book is really worth a second click. Sex. George W. Bush. Free iPod. Purple monkey dishwasher.

Still here? Great! Intrigued? I knew you would be! Join me in this journey as we realize how much better I am than other Christians in regards to this topic. You may disagree with me along the way, but that is only because your wrong!

In Part 1, I'll be transparent. I'll let you know my own 'dating' history, but only kind of. In Part 2, I'll discuss online dating. The way I figure it, if you're reading this online book you probably don't have a great shot of dating in real life, so I'll help you learn how to find the love of your life online. I wrote Part 3 because I know from experience that Part 2 gets really old after a while. So I'll let you in on the true secret to find a spouse. Enjoy!

* for example, I kissed dating goodbye by Joshua Harris

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Kan Jam

I always like to find new & simple games to play. At camp, I was introduced to Kan-Jam. We played it quite a lot during the week and I just received my own set in the mail and already have 2 dates on the schedule to play it. Kan-Jam is a frisbee game. For more information visit the Kan-Jam website.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

The Simple Life

I'll admit, there have been times over the past years that I've looked at my life and ministry and thought, "this isn't really too difficult." I can read. I can study. I can show up on time. I can lead a Bible study. I can be a good influence. I can avoid making glaring mistakes. Etc. And even when people bring me their problems, sometimes I solve them, or at least point them in the right direction. Life, at times, is pretty simple.

But this week life is messy. Nothing has really happened, but different things weigh on my mind than usual. I can't focus. I can't heal sicknesses. I can't restore relationships. I can't make my wishes come true instantly. I can't meet needs. I can't. Life is pretty complicated.

So I'm glad that the last bunch of sermons I've heard have been about relying on the Spirit.

Monday, August 06, 2007

July Blogger Awards

I finally got around to doing the July blogger awards. You can view them HERE

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Catch and Release

Saturday Night we watched Catch and Release starring Jennifer Garner. I didn't like it very much. It was OK until Garner's character kissed the guy who had just lied to her. That sequence of events just didn't seem realistic to me. Parts of the storyline seemed to be either forced or poorly edited. It wasn't funny enough to be considered a comedy and it wasn't romantic enough to be considered romantic. I'm not sure what it was, but it wasn't really worth watching.

Rating: 4.8
Status: Waste of Time

Saturday, August 04, 2007


While I was at camp we watched Sahara. It's very similar to National Treasure, but with a more action and a little less interesting of a storyline. I probably missed some of the dialogue because we were using my laptop speakers and it was pretty quiet. The cast was good and I generally like the genre, though I consider Indiana Jones & National Treasure to be superior to Sahara. All in all, worth the watch.

Rating: 6.7
Status: Worth the Time

Friday, August 03, 2007

Friday @ Camp

Thursday after midnight (so, technically Friday) we were playing 'Trix' (Oh Poop, to some) before another night of some "The Office" episodes. We almost made it to 4am, but I still managed to wake up for breakfast. After packing up our rooms, loading the cars & turning in keys, we went to the closing rally. After that, we bought some last second books from the campus store before lunch. Then we drove to a mini-golf place. I won with a 51. Aaron had a 52. Katie had a 55. Nice & close. After I dropped Katie off, I floated in the pool and talked with my little sister for about an hour or so. Now I'm about to unpack or something. Here's a family camp top 10 in no particular order:

1. 55 people from Hess Road Wesleyan!
2. A mighty missional message from Mike
3. Upstate Farms Chocolate Milk
4. Basketball w/Nate, Phil, Cam & Pat
5. Tennis, Ping-Pong & Can-Jam
6. Trix, Dutch Blitz, Phase 10, etc
7. The Office on the projector
8. Having Aaron & Katie to be with
9. Seeing fellow pastors & old friends
10. Having a week to not think a lot

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Thursday @ Camp

Today Aaron was in charge, but he slept most of the morning. I made it to breakfast and won Dutch Blitz afterwards. I also organized a plan to visit 51 homes in 1 day on a bike rally sometime later this summer/fall. After lunch, we went to the basement and played ping pong, Dutch Blitz & Scattergories till Supper. After supper I hung out with Katie for a while and then went to service, which was good again. Then I played 4 rough games of basketball, so I was pretty much worn out and disgusting. But a shower has remedied that and I'm ready for another night of fun. Lata.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Wednesday @ Camp

I slept in today on accident. Aaron woke me up at almost 11am. I missed breakfast :( The afternoon started out sorta slow too, but the day got better as it went along. Katie & I watched Aaron not climb a rock wall. We played Scattergories & Mille Borne. We watched Sahara. We finished season 2 of The Office. Service was good tonight, best so far. It's 3:18am now and I'm ready to try to sleep. Tomorrow is, sadly enough, the last full day of camp.