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    not-to-judge

    Read 2 Corinthians 5:16 below. I’ve included various versions. Read them all if you like. They all say pretty much the same thing, but reading them all gives you a better understanding of the original text since each is translated in a slightly different way. I actually encourage you to read the entire chapter. It’s easier to understand a single verse when you know the context.

    16 Therefore from now on we recognize no one [f]according to the flesh; even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him in this way no longer. (NASB)

    16 So from now on we don’t look at anyone the way the world does. At one time we looked at Christ in that way. But we don’t anymore. (NIRV)

    16 We are careful not to judge people by what they seem to be, though we once judged Christ in that way. (CEV)

    16 Therefore, from now on, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him thus no longer. (NKJV)

    Chapter 16 starts out by talking about the human body.

    Basically defining it as a tent that we live in while we’re on earth. It’s a home that we will one day leave for our eternal home. Our bodies keep us from eternity for now, but in the mean time it is also tool God has given us to please Him and we will one day be judged for the deeds that body does, good or bad.

    So our bodies are apparently in existence to help our Spirit get things done. In a way the text is minimizing the importance and usefulness of the body (can be destroyed, keeps us from Heaven) but then points out it’s usefulness in obeying and pleasing God.

    Our bodies are how we outwardly express our devotion to God and God’s devotion to others. How many of us think of our bodies in that way? I just think about how fat my body is most of the time. It’s how I enjoy my movies, video games. It’s how I drive around, hug my kids, type out blog posts. But although our bodies are limited, in usefulness and duration, we are to use it in ways that will be judged as good. Just like anything God has given us, we are accountable to Him for how we’ve made use of it. Boy am I in trouble. I have a lot of explaining to do for what was going on between ages 14 and 16.  [click to continue…]

    depression-is-not-spiritual

    Major depressive disorder and Anxiety are not Spiritual Issues. They are mental issues. Depression and Anxiety are no more spiritual issues than a broken leg is. Do you know how I know this? Because honestly prayer, activities, church, ministry, life changes, attempts to flush out sin, none of those things improved my depression and anxiety. Medication did. Medication that alters the chemicals in my brain so that it functions as it should. If it were a spiritual issue… would medication work? I would say no. I am not aware of any spiritual issue that medication has any effect on.

    It makes me nuts that someone can have cancer and we’re 100% supportive. No one in the church would ever dream of accusing them of being out of the Will of God or in a situation where they need more faith. But those who struggle with depression in our more traditional or ignorant churches find themselves inundated with input that is not only completely unhelpful, it actually compounds the problem. [click to continue…]

    amos

    This is a continuation of commentary on Amos 5:14-15. So read the first part first. This is the second part.

    “Choose good instead of evil! See that justice is done.”

    Good and evil. I immediately think of the evil villain tying the damsel to the railroad tracks. A few thoughts later and I’m thinking of those who kidnap, those traffic human beings, those who murder, steal and those who judge others. There are also the evils of child abuse, spouse abuse, self-abuse through the use of drugs and excess alcohol, gossiping, and countless others. Followers of Christ enjoy a little perk we call grace. Since early Christianity we have rested easy knowing that our sins are forgiven and our place in heaven is secure. And though that place is secure, we must not take advantage of that grace. [click to continue…]

    amos

    Amos 5:14-15 
    If you really want to live, you must stop doing wrong and start doing right.
    I, the Lord God All-Powerful, will then be on your side, just as you claim I am.
    Choose good instead of evil! See that justice is done.
    Maybe I, the Lord All-Powerful, will be kind to what’s left of your people.
    Contemporary English Version (CEV)

    Skip this first paragraph

    I am no bible scholar… but I do think hard about the biblical text that I read. I try to see it in it’s original context. That means that I try to understand what it meant to the people it was written to in the time period it was written. This is complicated exponentially by the fact that I know very little about the people or time period in question. So rather than claiming to know the exact original context, I will simply claim one thing: [click to continue…]

    download

    I haven’t written a life update for quite a while. Probably because when you’re feeling better after an extended bout with crippling depression and anxiety you would rather be doing stuff you couldn’t do before rather than talking about it.

    But that being said, I am doing better. So, so, so much better. Not all the way better… but closer to normal than I’ve been in quite a while.

    [click to continue…]

    kids-bubbles

    I took pictures so fast it looked almost like a video so I turned it into an animated GIF.

    I’ve just finished designing what I hope will become a epic AT AT loft bed for the boy. I’ve seen of these online… but the design’s were either too simple, out of scale (skinny legs), or overly complex and awesome (aka expensive). This one is somewhere in between.

    atatbed

    Firstly since it’s for a 5 year old young man I modeled it after the Galactic Heroes style Imperial Walker.

    4914246838_143409fb82

    The Galactic Heroes version is a little chubbier with shorter legs and a fat head. Lends itself more to the size and shape of a child’s bed than the typical variety.

    Here are some shots from various angles. I hope to have this thing built before February (the boy’s birthday), so stay tuned for updates.

    Click the pics to make them bigger.

    bunk4

    The outer skin is basically layers of MDF cut to various shapes.

    bunk3

    The bed will be very sturdy. I built it first then added the decorations to be sure I wasn’t sacrificing safety for looks.

    bunk

    The backside shows the open side window and the entrance to the head area.

    bunk2

     

     

     

    The head was just big enough to create a little crawl area. I’ll probably put in some plexiglass so he can see out through the “eyes”.

    bunk8

    Speaking of eyes. Here’s a close up of the head. The guns will be simple PVC.

    bunk5

    The back faces the back wall, no sense in adding a rear end to this thing. Plus it makes it super easy to get up and down that ladder.

    bunk6

    Random top view.

    bunk7

    Bottom view shows off the two beams that will keep the head secure.

    Now we’ve just got to see if my wife will let me build it.

     

    not-ready

    Recently I have dared to dream about the possibility of returning to ministry… maybe even ministry to children… but I have so many restrictions for what that return looks like that I know I am still not ready.

    I recently have been very tempted to jump into an opportunity that has opened up. It would be a Sunday-only, volunteer position with a limited commitment of only a few months. It seems perfect for where I am right now. The desire to do it is new and makes me wonder if I will one day return to full-time ministry. I could imagine myself doing Sunday services with the kids… even at my worst Sunday services were never really a problem. It’s all the other mess that would probably revert me into being a basket case.  [click to continue…]

    If you search “Minecraft Buzz Lightyear” some of the stuff that comes up was either made by me or copied from slash inspired by something I did. Enjoy all of the found examples below.

    Thanks to all of the folks who have immortalized my stuff by doing your own versions! I’m honored.

    First up,

    Lego Minifig Buzz Pixel Art

    From this blog on December 19th, 2010:

    “In 2002 I was very into pixel art… and I really wanted a Buzz Lightyear Lego minifig. Alas there wasn’t such a thing until 2010. Here is what I imagined a Buzz Lightyear Minifig would look like.”

    Buzz Lightyear Lego Minifig Pixel Art

    [click to continue…]

    Not Everything Sucks

    August 16, 2013 · 14 comments

    The last couple posts have been pretty heavy. They were written from a place of pain and reflected feelings that I have when I’m feeling really down. As is the nature with bipolarism I’m feeling sorta okay today. Played some Minecraft. Drew some logos. Actually, digitally painted a logo.

    latteam

    It’s not super great… but I like um. Not often I do a lot with painting digitally. It’s usually drawing shapes and text and shading and gradients and drop shadows.

    So about not everything sucking…

    I figured I’d write out some of the good things that have transpired since I quit my job as a Children’s Pastor.

    [click to continue…]