Thursday, September 29, 2011


Here's to the twilight, here's to the memories
These are my souvenirs, momental pictures of everything
Here's to the late nights, here's to the firelight
These are my souvenirs, my souvenirs

I close my eyes go back in time
I can see you smiling, so alive
We were so young, we had no fear
We were so young, we had no idea
That life was just happening

Here's to your bright eyes, shining like fireflies
These are my souvenirs, the memory of a lifetime
We were wide-eyed with everything, everything around us
We were enlightened by everything, everything

So I close my eyes and go back in time
I can see you smiling, so alive
I close my eyes and go back in time
You were just a child, and so was I
We were so young, we had no fear
We were so young, we had no idea
That nothing lasts forever

You and me together
We're always now or never

Can you hear me?
Can you hear me?

I close my eyes and go back in time
I can see you smiling, you're so alive
I close my eyes and go back in time
You were wide-eyed, you were wide-eyed
We were so young, we had no fear
We were so young, we had just begun
A song we knew, but had never sung
It burned like fire inside our lungs

And life was just happening (nothing lasts, nothing lasts forever)
And life was just happening (nothing lasts, nothing lasts forever)

I wouldn't trade it for souvenirs

-"Souvenirs" from Switchfoot's Vice Verses

Sunday, September 11, 2011

10 years later...

Today is September 11, 2011.  Ten years ago, we experienced one of the defining moments of my generation.  Nothing else has so dramatically changed the world that once was into what the world has become.  From the way we view the Middle East to the way we travel has shifted.

That Tuesday, so long ago, is a blur for me.  I remember being in my Bible teachers room when I heard the news.  The class sat shocked for a second.  My Bible teacher, Chad Barrett, prayed fervently, yet calmly, for the people in New York.  We continued with our scheduled day at Hamilton Christian Academy, but nobody felt much like doing any assignments.  We didn't have TVs in the classrooms so information was scarce and a long time in coming.  I remember some of the students wanted to call home.  Rumors were moving through the student body, saying that Lake Charles was a target or something because of the oil refineries.  Fortunately, nothing became of that, but already you could see signs of the changes and (in some cases) fear that some people had.

I remember getting in the truck with Mom and Jared to go home that day.  Mom had the radio on listening to the news reports.  I don't think any of us had actually seen any images from New York yet, but it was all we saw on TV that night.

Seeing the initial videos, pictures, dust, fire, blood and death was shocking.  I remember President Bush giving his speech to the nation:

"Today, our fellow citizens, our way of life, our very freedom came under attack in a series of deliberate and deadly terrorist acts."

By this time, the death and destruction had pushed all the tears out of me.  I was just numb.

I don't remember much about the following weeks.  I know that HCA had an assembly, and that I got the chance to read a poem that I had written.  I remember having to read it twice for some reason and got a lot of claps afterward.

A few years later, I got the chance to go to Ground Zero while on a mission trip to New York City with the LSU Baptist Collegiate Ministry.  I had never been to NYC before then, but remember standing there looking at the memorial site, thinking that it was like there was a hole there.  Like something was missing.  At that point there was still a section of cross beam in the shape of a cross that was like the centerpiece of the memorial.

Ten years later, the images and videos still push me to tears.

I think that they always will.

9/11/01  -  Never forget.

"I can hear you! I can hear you, the rest of the world hears you. And the people who knocked these buildings down will hear all of us soon!"

-President George W. Bush

Monday, April 11, 2011


I love nature documentaries. I could watch the lions chasing after the wildebeest, or the weird bug getting taken out by the chameleon, or the great white shark making a seal disappear. And like I tell the kids I teach, I root for the predator. I don't really know why. So it should come as no surprise that when I found out that the Discovery Channel would be running a new series called Human Planet and I got really, really excited!

Katie and I watched it Sunday, and it was amazing to see the different stories of people from all over the world. The struggles that some of the people go through just to get a good meal or an education.

Watching that, I was thinking that we are incredibly blessed that we don't have to spend half of our day risking death, trying to catch fish to eat for dinner each night. How we don't have to spend our work day, inside a poison gas volcano to mine sulfur while breaking our backs. How my education was a 25 minute drive into town each day, and I could see my parents at the end of each day.

I know I get freaked out when my bank account gets a "little" low. But then, I catch myself, and remember that Joshua Ongadia, my Ugandan Compassion child, gets by on $38 a month.

I get bored and frustrated with the every day same-old same-old. But then, I think about the children in the world, who spend weeks during the harvest chasing away monkeys so the village can eat.

I can sleep in a comfortable bed each night in an air conditioned room; not worried about soldiers coming and taking me or my wife away. I have more clothes in my closet than some people will wear in a lifetime. I can go down to the store and buy whatever food I want to feed whoever I want. I can lift a lever and get cool, clean water.

When I slow down, I sometimes think why I think I'm such a big deal. 6 billion people in the world, and I think I'm the center of it. In the grand scheme of things, I am a speck. We all are.

And I am so blessed...

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Little by Little

Married life is great. I love it and highly recommend it. Katie is amazing and wonderful; the best thing that's ever happened to me. I love her very much, and can't wait to spend the rest of our lives together!

Life is starting to get crazy again. OE season is about to start back up again, and football season is finally back. We're finally getting some more rain again, and that means that the quiet gray days that I love are coming back.

This summer has been a little weird for me. I've missed the students that come out here, and (to an extent) the craziness that that brings. I think I'll be glad when they start coming in and this year can get underway.

I bought the new Goo Goo Dolls album. And I must say that it's pretty awesome. Here's one of my favorites: Not Broken.

(If the video doesn't work, then click here!)

Little by little, one walks far. - Peruvian proverb

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Learning from Toys

Normally, I don't really cry in movies or previews for that matter. But today, it happened twice in the same theater.

There was a trailer for the upcoming Chronicles of Narnia movie: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader. And I don't know; there was just something about it that just hit that nerve. Like I said, I don't really know what it was there. Something maybe about seeing the Lion, Reepicheep, Caspian, and the others once again on screen. Or maybe seeing the different scenes of the book coming to life again. Or maybe just knowing who and what the Dufflepuds and the Island Where Dreams Come True are and anticipating what will happen with them. Needless to say, I'm very excited for this movie.

The second round of tears came during the incredibly awesome movie, Toy Story 3. I can't really say to much without ruining the plot, but there was a section in the movie where Woody, Buzz, and the gang were in a very bad situation. So bad, that even Woody was resolved to the only fate that he could see. Through an unexpected (and hilarious) turn of events, Woody, Buzz, and the rest were okay. Since I can't really go that much into detail, I'll just say that the filmmakers gave me a much needed glimpse of God's love, providence, and rescue.

And it was just what I needed.

My last post was a reaction to things that were going on around me that I ultimately have very little control over. It was a post from a weary mind in a weary moment of weakness.

There is so much to be joyful about. See my previous posts if you want to read the extended lists.

We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us... We are far too easily pleased. - from C.S. Lewis' "The Weight of Glory"

I am a half-hearted creature. Infinite joy is offered to someone who seems to only wants to sulk in his own self-pity. I am far too easily pleased with this. Joy is not happiness. Happiness is temporary while joy is an attitude.

In all these things, we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. Romans 8:37

Friday, June 18, 2010


My last post detailed some of the little things that I look for and appreciate. I must admit that, for whatever reason, I'm finding this to be somewhat difficult these last few days. And the worst part is that I can't really put my finger on what exactly is making it difficult.

It's tough. And some days I don't want to even try. I just feel like curling back up in bed and sleeping it all away. There are days where I'm just weary.

I feel that there are days where I have to try very hard to find any joy. I know that I'm blessed beyond imagining. Some days and some hours, I have a difficult time actually remembering that.

So I put on my big boy smile, and press on.

Sometimes for days on end.

Striving to find that joy.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Little Things

Over the last few days, I've tried to come up with something meaningful to post here. It's turning out to be a lot easier said than done.

Awhile back, I posted a list of little things that I was thankful for that I might/usually take for granted. Some of these might be repeats of the last entry, but that's okay. In no particular order, here goes:

A wonderful fiancee'.
A good bed.
Great friends.
Fruit snacks.
Nature documentaries like Planet Earth and Life.
Creme soda.