bullet-life-points (wk v)

The last couple days have been manic-depressive.  For example, on Wednesday, Valerie came to spend the day with me.  Wonderful.  Yesterday, I found out we won’t have another CCO staffer at Gannon.  Suck.  I was invited to be part of the CCO’s recruiting base camp team.  Woo!  I stubbed my toe really bad yesterday.  Yeoch. 

I also am a little sad that folks are packing up and heading home today.  With the end of NST, it allows me some time to relax and get some things accomplished before going back to Gannon, but to have been a part of a caring and vulnerable community for a few weeks and then to leave it is sad.  I felt the same bittersweetness last year, too.

But, again, if there’s something I’ve learned in the last year, it’s that life can only be taken as it’s presented, in its fullness, and keep walking along.  When I look at the future as it stands today, it looks bright, but there’s an infinite amount of present to navigate and celebrate before future will be here.

I’m also packing, then heading out with the staff for lunch, then going home.  Much love to all.


israel v. lebanon


I wanted to at least make mention of all of these things happening in the Mideast because of the valid concerns people have about what is occuring.  It’s scary to think what could happen.  As I was sitting to write about this, I was reminded of the building of Solomon’s Temple:

1 Kings 5

Preparations for Building the Temple

When Hiram king of Tyre heard that Solomon had been anointed king to succeed his father David, he sent his envoys to Solomon, because he had always been on friendly terms with David.  Solomon sent back this message to Hiram:

“You know that because of the wars waged against my father David from all sides, he could not build a temple for the Name of the LORD his God until the LORD put his enemies under his feet.  But now the LORD my God has given me rest on every side, and there is no adversary or disaster.  I intend, therefore, to build a temple for the Name of the LORD my God, as the LORD told my father David, when he said, ‘Your son whom I will put on the throne in your place will build the temple for my Name.’

“So give orders that cedars of Lebanon be cut for me. My men will work with yours, and I will pay you for your men whatever wages you set. You know that we have no one so skilled in felling timber as the Sidonians.”

When Hiram heard Solomon’s message, he was greatly pleased and said, “Praise be to the LORD today, for he has given David a wise son to rule over this great nation.”

So Hiram sent word to Solomon:
       “I have received the message you sent me and will do all you want in providing the cedar and pine logs.  My men will haul them down from Lebanon to the sea, and I will float them in rafts by sea to the place you specify. There I will separate them and you can take them away. And you are to grant my wish by providing food for my royal household.”

In this way Hiram kept Solomon supplied with all the cedar and pine logs he wanted, and Solomon gave Hiram twenty thousand cors of wheat as food for his household, in addition to twenty thousand baths of pressed olive oil. Solomon continued to do this for Hiram year after year.  The LORD gave Solomon wisdom, just as he had promised him. There were peaceful relations between Hiram and Solomon, and the two of them made a treaty.

King Solomon conscripted laborers from all Israel—thirty thousand men.  He sent them off to Lebanon in shifts of ten thousand a month, so that they spent one month in Lebanon and two months at home. Adoniram was in charge of the forced labor.  Solomon had seventy thousand carriers and eighty thousand stonecutters in the hills, as well as thirty-three hundred foremen who supervised the project and directed the workmen.  At the king’s command they removed from the quarry large blocks of quality stone to provide a foundation of dressed stone for the temple.  The craftsmen of Solomon and Hiram and the men of Gebal cut and prepared the timber and stone for the building of the temple.

Tyre, of which king Hiram lived, is in Lebanon, and it’s actually now the fourth largest city there.  It makes me sad to think about this time of peace and renewal.  Without making too much of a strech, either, it seems to make sense – when we’re focused on YHWH, and not on our own desires, peace leads the way.  On the flag of Israel, there is the star of David, Solomon’s father; on Lebanon’s flag there’s a cedar tree.  What shame to be fighting for flags where one can’t remember their history.

picture 12 – support staff

This is a fine picture of the nst06 support staff.  We’re the folks who are living with the new staff, doing the whole community thing and providing as much wisdom and information as possible.  If this were facebook, here’s how the boxes would go from left to right:

Mike Mattes (AD of Central and Southern Ohio)
Katie Tarara (AD of WV and SWPA)
Beth Herman (Pitt law, medical, dental)
Lindsey Smyth (Wayne Presbyterian and a bunch ‘o schools)
Austina McFarland (Ohio Dominican)
Kelly Crowell (GCC)
Adam Anderson (Gannon)
Random girl who wanted to be photo’d

We’re at the original New Brighton Hot Dog Shoppe.  Crazy delicious.

That’s it for now.  Except to say that I now have highlighted hair, and I’ve come to find that this has been a summer of serendiptious style changes.  Thank you Roaming Shores lake and KTT deciding to get highlights.  The end.

wk iv

I remember in June I couldn’t stop writing in my blog.  Now, each time I sit down to write to you, my dear readers, I find it much more difficult to do so.  I don’t know if it’s because I haven’t found myself observing as much, or maybe because I’m judging myself and my writing too much.  I feared this would happen when somehow I had 60+ views in one day. 

Anyway, today Byron Borger came in today, and spoke about the Kingdom vision.  The Kingdom concept springs from Abraham Kuyper, in which he said that Jesus, in his Lordship, has no space – no square inch – in which he doesn’t claim as his own.  This obviously has major implications, the most important is that there are no dualisms, and everything is important and is redeemable.  A great way to think of it is in terms of “full-time Christian service”: there is nothing but full time Christian service… there is no part-time service.  The implication more specifially for a campus minister is that we want to encourage our students as much as possible to integrate their faith into their career.  It’s perfectly good to be a light for Christ in the art world, in the business world, and in the medical world.  It’s closing the dualistic nature – thinking that Christ is only owner of the church, not of the whole world – that is our key.  It was great to be reminded of that.

Also, Byron brought a bunch of the books from his store, and I always buy more books than I should, but never feel too guilty for it.  I recieved a $25 gift certificate to Hearts and Minds today, so that took a little bit of the edge off.  Guarateed though, I will buy more books and will continue to increase my library of good intentions to read.

 At least when I do read them, I’ll be a better campus minister.

peace to you all.

wk iii

I’m blown away by the fact that I’m already at the end of week three at new staff training.  It has been so much fun, and the blessing it is to meet all these new staff and spend time with them is amazing.  One of the best parts thus far was yesterday.  Quite a few people left for the weekend, so we had about half the community.  I suggested that we pair up with one of the other cook groups for dinner (the cook groups are smaller groups that eat all of their meals together).  Anyway, the idea soon blossomed into everyone eating outside together.  We all cooked hamburgers and roasted vegetables and relaxed together.  I’m so impressed by everyone’s kindness and desire to be a community.  In any case, after that, I took some folks out to Starbucks for some reading and delicious drinks.  It was a good time to have some great conversation and get away from Geneva.  The picture beside my words is a picture of me at the last theme dinner: “Game Piece Night”.  I was the game “Simon“, as you can see by the colors. 

The classes we’ve been taking (well, I should clarify that by saying the classes new staff have been taking that I’ve been in as well) about evangelism and apologetics have been well planned and executed.  I’ve probably learned more about those subjects in the last week that I have in quite awhile.  That’s the joy of being able to be in this space, and what I realized last year as well:

i apologize this hasn’t been very consistent. i have wanted to be all about sending everyone updates and being really good about it, but with all of the stuff we’re doing (which tends to get backlogged), it hasn’t been easy.

however, for any of you that are reading, let me assure you then when the chance comes, i can’t wait to tell you all about what i’m learning. we sit in our classes and i walk away every day with something new to think about, something new to apply, and a new paradigm descends. i find myself so drawn into the people and the organization that i can’t see where else i’d be (which is something that has been playing over and over again, i realize…)

anyway, peaceandlove to all, and i’ll be back soon.

Hey, just to let you know: IT HAPPENS HERE EVEN WHEN YOU’VE BEEN ON STAFF!!!


2 more weeks and then I’ll be out of here again.  I’m going to savor it, because this time is serene.  And hey, also, ps, if you’re interested in learning more about this stuff, either visit or join the CCO.  You can talk to me about both (some of you already have… check plus to you!)

Today it’s off to Roaming Shores, and them some quality time with Nakis, and then who knows.  Much peace.

wk ii pt ii

Ever want to write something on a blog, have the chance, and then really can’t think of much?

Yes.  That’s me.  I’m even trying to think of some funny things I’ve seen to relate to you, and I can at least think of a guy that I saw in Friends Roastery who had a moustache with handlebars sticking straight out.  It looked like antennae.

I did some support raising work this weekend in the Cleveland area, and I’ve come to find it’s just as nice to hang out and catch up with people as it is to do the support work.  But thank you to Russ and Chrissy for their time.

Today I bought a new CD – Corrine Bailey Rae, and it’s really good.  She sounds like a mix between Amy Winehouse and Nelly Furtado with a soul/jazz influence (think something along the lines of Marvin Gaye).  Really good, really smooth and summery music.

I’m at real peace right now.  I feel centered, and I think things are going in a right direction with me.  It’s one part being disciplined in faith, one part doing something I love, and one part not worrying too much.

peace to all.