Archive for March, 2007

Thinking Blogger Award.

Friday, March 30th, 2007

A tech blogger named ilker started this meme a while back. He called it 5 blogs that make me think.
I was tagged and thus awarded by Brocious and Semper Fi Mom.

I typically don’t do memes. Jeff granted me immunity from memes long ago. I can’t thank him enough for that.

So let me list 5 of the blogs that get my noggin knocking.

First and formost I must recognize my favorite blogger and enduring friend. Jeff makes me think. What those thoughts are is a different subject. None the less he makes me think.

Sometimes you find someone that you can truly share empathy with you. I take quite a few lessons from Curious Servant. I admire you amigo.

I know most of you are not this interested in autism stuff. But I am. So next I must mention Autism Diva. It is nice to find someone so imformative.

Next is a preacher. Tony Myles makes me think. He likes it when you call him Veronica.

Finally, I have found a new pundit that makes me think. Let me introduce you to Evan Sayet’s blog. If Evan can’t inspire you to think, you might consider surgery.

I know some of you lucky folks were already tagged. That is fine. You have no obligation to do this again. Just take your complement and smile.

Update: Sean honored me with yet another  TBA.

Life grows larger.

Thursday, March 29th, 2007

We had some enormous Asian Yucca trees at the house where I grew up. The sparrows that lived in them made quite a din. The sun shot through my window. It was a school day. I was supposed to be up way before sunrise.

I heard my mother coughing. She must have stayed home from school sick. I wondered why I was not taken to school.

I walked into the den in my underwear. There sat my father, mother, brother and Kelli. Kelli was an adorable 19 year old radio DJ and a close friend of the family. I turned around and grabbed a pair of jeans.

When I reentered the room, I asked what was going on. My brother handed me a concert ticket. It wasn’t just any concert either. It was Rush. I may well have been their most devoted fan. Everyone laughed as my crooked mouth hung agape. My mother said, “Get a change of clothes. It is an over night trip.”

It did not take me long to pack. I was ready to go quickly. That was a good thing. We had a 356 mile trip to Dallas to make. The three of us loaded up in my brother’s brown Oldsmobile and headed East. The speed limit was 55 then. So traffic and all made this a 7 hour drive. We didn’t even stop.

Our seats were close to the stage. This was quite the encounter for me. I idolized these fellas. To my surprise, they weren’t as tall as I envisioned. I knew every word and every note by heart. To my surprise, they missed a few. It seems these fellas were not idols but real men who make mistakes. They were not larger than life. But my perspective on life grew a little larger that day.

Years later I joined a church. The preacher at this church was amazing. To this day I have not heard another who could preach that well that consistently. Being in my early 20s, I was going through a formative time in my character. The preacher and his wife Mary did quite a bit to shape who I am. He was charismatic and spiritual. She had big brown eyes that could disarm the soviet block. I looked up to the man in a special way. I and that whole church had a case of preacheritis.

I returned to that church for a visit after moving away. He was gone. He ran away with a girl he met on a mission trip to Omsk. The church was bitter, angry and hurt. So was I.

I saw Mary. She had not lost one bit of her infectious enthusiasm. When I ran into her, I said, “I don’t know what to say. I love you.” She put her hand on my shoulder. Her eyes became intense. She looked me in the face and said, “I know you love him more than most of these people. The devil has him so confused that he can’t tell which way is up. Zane, pray that he comes to his senses.” She did not want a thing for herself. It took me years to understand.

When I got back to Winters, I went to see Rick. He was my best friend in town and the preacher in our church. He pointed something important out to me. A person’s misdeeds do not have to negate their good deeds. The good that was done in my life was still there even if this preacher had thrown his life away. You see, that preacher was no longer larger than life. But my perspective on the Way the Truth and the Life grew a little larger that day.

All flesh is grass, and all its loveliness is like the flower of the field.

The grass withers, the flower fades, when the breath of the Lord blows upon it; Surely the people are grass.

The grass withers, The flower fades, But the word of our God stands forever.

Some more spring pictures

Monday, March 26th, 2007

The Bradford Pears have shed their blossoms.  They are blowing around the ground in drifts like this.

But new blooms are coming out.  The Dogwood and Japanese Maples are pretty colorful.

The Japanese Maple’s leaves wont get much bigger and they maintain a lot of this red.

The Dogwood blossoms won’t be here long.

I have no idea what these are.  I’m just going to enjoy them while the’re here.

Spurs, a Mirror and Unfinished Projects

Friday, March 23rd, 2007

I have a knack for coming out of the gate real strong and then fizzling out. I could make an unfinished project out of listing my unfinished projects.

If you have been reading this stuff very long, you know that I am also frequently tinkering with my own character. I spend a lot of time trying to get my self right.

So now I’m trying to fix my follow through. I think I have found the problem with it. I seem to get my motivations all mixed up with my intentions.

William Shakespeare said it well.

“I have no spur

To prick the sides of my intent, but only

Vaulting ambition, which o’erleaps itself,

And falls on th’ other”

Blame

Sunday, March 18th, 2007

Whenever somebody suffers people start to ask questions. They ask questions about who is to blame. Looking for someone to blame aint right but it is natural.

I heard a sermon today over this subject using some good scripture:

And as he passed by, He saw a man blind from birth.

And his disciples asked Him, saying, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he should be born blind?”

So they wonder is this a punishment from God? Was this because of something his mother did while pregnant? Who is to blame?

It turned out that this man suffered blindness in order that God could be glorified by his healing. It wasn’t his fault or his parents’ fault.

We live in a fallen world. Bad things happen to good people. If you have to have someone to blame, you could always blame Adam, or Satan, or even God. People often do. The truth is there is no justice in blame. Blaming doesn’t make anything better. Blaming doesn’t make anything right.

Think about how many people waste their own lives being zealous for blame. They sue. They slander. They pour their whole being into their cause.

Some real wisdom can be found on the playground. Good kids get punched because of another kid’s bad behavior. The good kid did nothing wrong. And there is still a benevolent God. Sometimes a good kid trips and falls. And there is still a benevolent God. The kids understand that this is just the way of the world. Adults lose that wisdom sometimes.

People just want things to be fair. Fair is for football. Fair doesn’t enter into adult life very often. I gave up on fair a long time ago and I am happier for it. Bad things happen to good people and there is still a benevolent God. In fact, knowing that God will make all things right and just is what gets me through seeing the innocent suffer.

Let me paraphrase the Lord. I figure I can do a pretty accurate translation into my own vernacular. “I told y’all this stuff so you could have peace in Me. This world will always give you trouble, but take courage; I have overcome the world.

The Commies think I’m Dangerous

Saturday, March 17th, 2007

Yes!  My content is objectionable to the commie thought police in China.  I must be doing something right.

Check out The Great Firewall of China to see if you are unsuitable.

Spring in my step.

Tuesday, March 13th, 2007

When I opened the door this morning, the neighbor’s tree said hello in a colorful way.

My enormous Bradford pear is also full of blossoms and new leaves.

The Red Oak is waking up.

So is the big Ash.

Japanese Maples are sprouting new growth.

Look. A dogwood bud.

And so it is time to bud and blossom and turn over those new leaves. Happy spring friends.