new teaching series at lifepoint

On January 1, I'll be starting a new teaching series at LifePoint entitled "Developing Healthy Habits." This series will focus on how to develop habits that are healthy rather than destructive. We'll start the series with a message about setting right priorities. Below is a little graphic I've put together for the occasion ...

and you thought your ear hair was getting long

This just in from Fark.com ...

Radhakant Bajpai, 50, of Naya Ganj, India, is one of many medical record breakers to make their way into this year's Guinness World Records Book. The hair sprouting from his outer ears measures 13.2cm (5.19 inches) at its longest point and was confirmed by Dr R P Gupta.

Mr Radhakant said: "God has been very kind to me."

Read original story.


scenes from christmas morning

Happy day after Christmas! I hope you enjoyed a very, Merry Christmas and had time to reflect on important things. Here's a few pictures from our day ...

These are my "spoils."


christmas caroling

A few of us LifePointers went Christmas caroling tonight at the apartment of an old, dear friend. Tonya and I first met Henrietta Bell when she was a young 85 years-old. That was fifteen years ago. She recently celebrated her 100th birthday and appears to be going strong. We sang for about thirty minutes and had a great time. Following the singing, we retreated back to the house for food ... and more food! It was a fine night.

fifteen years

Tonya and I celebrated our 15th anniversary yesterday in style ... dinner at McDonalds and a night at Motel 6. Just kidding. We let her parents watch the girls and we went to La Jolla for dinner and a night at the Grand Colonial Hotel. It's a beautiful hotel built in 1913 and with a view overlooking La Jolla Cove. For dinner, we ate at Azul's. I won't eat again until tomorrow! It was absolutely fantastic!

God has been good to me. I have been blessed with a loving and supportive wife for fifteen great years. She has been a great wife, helper, and mother to our children. May every man be so blessed.

Behind every successful man is a surprised mother-in-law.


entering the digital age whether you like it or not

The following piece of information just entered my inbox and I share it with you:

U.S. TV Must Be All-Digital By February 2009
NY Times

The U.S. House of Representatives yesterday approved a budget that calls for all American TV to be broadcast via digital signal by Feb. 17, 2009. Translation: Consumers who don't subscribe to cable or satellite television or who don't own TV sets capable of receiving digital signals will be out of luck. Since only 15 percent of U.S. households do not currently subscribe to cable or satellite TV, the 2009 date should not pose much of a challenge. The new budget provides up to $80 per household in the way of coupons for those who must purchase converter boxes for their old TV sets; the converters permit old-tech analog TVs to continue to function. Among those objecting to the moves yesterday was Consumers Union. "This is the government making your TV go black and then only paying for part of the costs for some of the people to make it work again," said Gene Kimmelman, public policy director of the organization.


roadside memorial

Near our house, on Baltimore Drive, there is a roadside memorial honoring a lost loved one. Once when walking by, I stopped and briefly looked around. I noticed the other night that someone has decorated it for Christmas ... flowers, wreaths, and Christmas lights. The Christmas lights are strung along the back of the makeshift memorial. It's a simple reminder of life's priorities. Those sorts of things always send chills up my back. In a good way.


live music blog

Just a quick blog while listening to the open mic at Cosmos ... it's good stuff. A bunch of newbies tonight, which is always a nice break -- when they're good. One dude ripped through some old Jackson Browne stuff and it was awesome. Well ... it's time to clap.


richard pryor and peoria, il

"Will it play in Peoria?" Why they selected Peoria as a testing ground for viability, I'm not sure. Peoria's other claim to fame was being the world headquarters for Caterpillar Tractors. Go Cat diesel power!

Through the years, Peoria did give birth to a fair number of celebrities. Dan Fogelburg, Sam Kinison, and Richard Pryor. For those who don't know, Richard Pryor passed away today from a heart attack.

Read more at The New York Times.

laptop is back in action

I'm finally blogging again from my trusty Dell laptop. After chatting with Dell support online, they decided to send a tech out to replace my motherboard. The tech arrived, deconstructed my laptop, took out the old motherboard, put in the new motherboard, reassembled my laptop, and left. It's working like a charm. It's the tech equivalent of getting a new engine.


steve doocy the weather guy

Every so often there is a news figure that is so quirky and unconventional. Steve Doocy from Fox's "Fox and Friends" is one of those characters. I get a kick out of his comments and faces. Unfortunately, the show is on East Coast time and goes off out here about the time normal people wake up.

Official bio:

"Steve Doocy joined FNC from WCBS-TV in New York, where he co-anchored "Early Morning Newscast." Prior to his stint there, Doocy served as the co-host of "Parent's Helper," and "Wake Up America," daily programs on America's Talking. Prior to joining America's Talking, Doocy was host of NBC's nationally syndicated program "House Party" from 1989 to 1990 and "Not Just News," FOX's children's news magazine from 1990 to 1994.

Throughout his career he has received 11 local EMMY Awards for various feature coverage as well as the Associated Press' Feature Reporter of the Year Award. A graduate of the University of Kansas, Doocy began his career as a feature reporter at WRC-TV (NBC) in Washington, D.C."

Why am I telling you this ... I don't know!

catching up and random thoughts

It's been several days since I last blogged; a major disappointment to the three people who need my blog to survive. The main reason is that my laptop is out of commission -- a major body blow. It's not getting AC power and the battery drained out. Without AC, it's not able to recharge the battery.

At first I thought it was a bad cord and searched all over town (figuratively speaking) to find a compatible replacement. Bought one at Fry's that didn't fit. Then went to CompUSA, Office Depot, Wal-Mart (I was desperate), and finally to Circuit City. At Circuit City I found an adapter kit that had the right size plug. And it would work with the universal adapter I bought at Frys.

So ... with anticipation building, I plugged it in last night and ... nothing! Nothing happened. I did notice I could get a green light when I wiggled the plug around. My diagnosis: the original cord was fine and it's the connector within the laptop that is bad. UGGGG. That means I have to either send it back to Dell or find a local option. At any rate, that means going without my laptop for some period of time. That's a problem for several reasons:

1. All of LifePoint's projection software is on my laptop.
2. All of my personal notes, projects, messages, etc., are on my laptop.
3. The podcast is on my laptop.
4. Itunes is on my laptop.
5. It eliminates any need to go hang at Twiggs.

The laptop is only one-year old :-(

On another note ...

Hannah and Hope had their first piano recital on Sunday. Both of them did an outstanding job and were very comfortable playing in front of people. I had planned on uploading a few pictures but ... they're on my laptop!


why craigslist works better than amvets

We contacted Amvets about donating some furniture to their store. "No problem, we'll send out a truck." Later that day the chairs are still on the porch with a note attached that reads, "We don't take furniture."

Not to fear, Craigslist is here. I snapped a few digital pictures, logged on to CL, uploaded the pictures, and waited. Within an hour we had received over 80 responses from people wanting to pick up our chairs. Since it was Friday night, we arranged with the first responder to pick them up the next day. They were gone by 9:30 AM.

We've used CL in both Atlanta and San Diego to give and receive things. In Atlanta, we gave away via CL a piano and riding lawn mower. Here in San Diego, we gave away all our moving boxes. In addition, we've picked up free patio furniture, a bookshelf, desk, filing cabinet, and a Johnny Cash CD.

Try it. You'll like it.


free concert tomorrow night in la mesa

Since I know hundreds of people who like good music read my blog on a daily basis I thought I would drop the following plug ...

Saturday at 7 PM Will Edwards and Aaron Bowen will be in concert at Cosmos in downtown La Mesa. Both of these guys are great singer-songwriters and play great acoustic music. Cosmos is a fun and inviting place to grab coffee and hangout.

Will was the first local artist to play at LifePoint and Aaron will be featured in January.

To get to Cosmos, take the Spring Street exit of I-8 and stay to the right. Turn left at La Mesa Boulevard and Cosmos will be on your immediate left.

While we're speaking of great music ... don't forget the "Live at the LifePoint Cafe" on December 18 (7 PM) featuring Will Edwards and Michael Tiernan.

the battle of two natures

At our LifeGroup this past Wednesday we discussed the nature of repentance and how hard it is to admit we're less than perfect (note: if you didn't know that before, you know it now!).

It's essentially a battle between two natures: our human nature that we were born with and our God-nature that is granted to those who are born again. Our human nature had free reign for a number of years before we submitted to God's call and gave our hearts to him. When we became Christians, we were clothed with Christ and God asks us to throw away our former wardrobe.

The trouble is ... we like some of our old clothes. I once held on to a plaid shirt that I wore while in high school. It didn't make its' way to Goodwill until I was around 25 years-old. Of course, plaid never goes out of style.

While clothing fashions may indeed be somewhat cyclical, our former spiritual wardrobe will never be in fashion for the believer. It's not just out of style, it's downright harmful.

That's the battle of repentance. The battle to change when the old clothes feel more comfortable or even enjoyable.


somebody up there loves you

Watching television this morning I noticed that Direct TV has a new commercial that ends with a picture of the sky and the line, "Somebody up there loves you."