Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Christian/Jewish Theme Park

Seriously? Although...it is owned by TBN.

You just won the Super Bowl, what are you going to do next?

I'm going to the Holy Land!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Political Peace of Mind

I never thought I would write another political post in such a short period of time, but considering what many others are thinking and talking about currently, I found it fitting. We keep hearing what a pivotal time this is in our country's history, and it is, but it is easy to be carried away in pride and allegiance to the wrong things.

We have the voice and our government works because of those who take the time to inform themselves and vote according to what they feel is best for the country. This is true if you have candidates that care more about the good of the country than their special projects or perhaps simply just getting elected. I feel we may have some candidates now that really care about the country, but my allegiance is not to this country. While it may be a great country and I am blessed and grateful to live here, there is no hope in a candidate, our government, a party, or in having our political voice heard. Our hope is only in Jesus, and that is the most amazing gift.

Having said all that, we still have the right and privilege in this country to have a say in who is elected or what our laws contain, even though there are others, such as the superdelegates who have more say when it comes to choosing some of those leaders. Much good can be done by doing our part in voting for our leaders and our laws. These things still will not bring us happiness, and they cannot give us hope.

When Paul tells us in Romans 13 that we are to submit to governing authorities, it is in the context of obeying the laws, living in peace with our neighbors, and paying taxes. It does not prescribe our duty to be active in the government, though it does say that governments are there because God put them there. If the economy were to tank tomorrow, or our country were to be invaded or destroyed and ruled by another, while authorities change and fall and rise, my loyalty is still to God. In Colossians he makes clear that it is God that rules over authorities.

For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. ~ Col. 1:16
And it is by the power of the risen Christ that God proved this authority over them.
And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross. ~ Col. 2:15
Even in the Pax Romana, the Roman government was supposedly the greatest on earth at the time. Jesus came and said that there can be only one Lord, and it is not Caesar. When Jesus is asked what to give to the ruling government, He makes it clear what we are to do.
Then Jesus said to them, "Give to Caesar what is Caesar's and to God what is God's." And they were amazed at him. ~Mark 12:17
If this is true, pay your taxes and vote for whoever you want, but do not give them your heart. That belongs to God.

So go and cast your vote, but remember that our peace and hope will not come from a tax cut or universal health care, but in the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ who loves us, and our adoption as God's children and the redemption of our bodies.

This is real hope.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

My First Bonsai

Yesterday I took a beginning bonsai class given by my boss at my place of work. Bonsai (not to be confused with banzai) is pronounced bone-sigh and literally means "tree in a pot". For my first bonsai I chose an acer palmatum atropurpureum, also known as a Red Leaf Japanese Maple. I learned some of the basics on choosing a plant, potting, plant care, and beginning the training process. I'll post more pictures as I go, but remember that this is a life-long endeavor, and one doesn't get good at it right away, but also in order for some bonsai to really start to look presentable it also takes years.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Writing An Update

The writing experiment has gone quite well so far. In almost an entire month I have missed two days, both with reasonable excuses for not writing. I think I have come up with several chunks of writing with some potential for turning into a pretty decent short story, and even a couple of full-length novel ideas. The trick now is to continue on this daily discipline of writing, but turning some of the writing into something more substantial, and perhaps even profitable. I do not know how this will happen, but time during the day is always against me. One tool that would help is a laptop, so if anyone wants to donate to the Tim Needs A Laptop fund, I am happy to accept the donations.

I've been bad about posting personal things on my blog in order for people to keep up on me. I've had a couple of doctor visits recently. I had a cold about a month or so ago that affected my breathing, but it wasn't getting any better. I tried breathing strips, sinus congestion medicine, even a sinus rinse (weird sensation). I visited the doctor and it turns out it was a sinus infection, so he gave me some antibiotics for the infection, but also suggested I have a CT scan. In the scan they found cysts in my sinuses, so I visited a specialist to go over what I should do, since breathing is still a little difficult through my left nostril, especially at night. I got to see the scan, which show I have a cyst filling the entire left nasal sinus. I have an appointment to have it drained with a long needle. Hopefully this will relieve the pressure it gives on the air passage and I will be able to breathe normally again.

This Saturday I'll be taking a bonsai class at work. This art of "tree in a pot" (literally) takes full-size trees and pruning them and training them to stay small and able to live in a small pot. I'm looking forward to learning this, for I've heard it's quite fun and relaxing, and taking years to become skilled in it, I am starting now, looking forward to having trees in my house. I hope to post many pictures of my journey in bonsai.

In case you didn't know, this is my 200th post! Hooray for milestones!