2010 Final List

Here it is:
  1. Pay off Car loan
  2. Plan periodic Date Nights with Ashley
  3. Blog Throughout the entire Year
  4. Go Snowboarding at least once
  5. Play tennis or basketball more often (every other month at least)
  6. Eat more Fish and less Beef
  7. Go somewhere I've never been (Arizona, Philadelphia)
  8. Fix my bike
  9. Drink more water and tea, and less Caffeine.
  10. Tithe consistently
  11. Volunteer to Serve food to homeless
  12. Make my Dad's Famous Strawberry pie from scratch.
  13. Read a Classic Book
  14. Take advantage of living by the ocean (Picnic at the ocean, run on the cliffs, go boogie boarding)
  15. Visit my mom at her new house
  16. Go to NHL hockey Game (only big Sporting Event that I have not experienced, besides Soccer..haha)
  17. Try new foods. (2009 I had Calamari for the first time, something like that)
  18. Stay in touch with old friends. (Easy to get busy with life and get disconnected to those who used to be really close to you)
  19. Find a restaurant or place that my wife and I can call "Our Place".
  20. Do some sort of "Man Craft". Build a picture frame, or grow something.

2010 List

I was reading a few blogs the other morning and "Always a Planner" was talking about making a list of things to do in 2010. The idea was to do 20 lists of 10, so in total 200 items. The 200 items could be small things like, eating at a specific restaurant or trying a new recipe. Today I have the day off and I am going to work on my list. I will probably cut it down to just 20 items for this year. 20 things I would like to do, to see, to experience, or just attempt this year in 2010.

I will post my results by the end of the day. Join me and post your own list of things you would like to do.

Forgiveness was Radical

I have been Reading Peter Rollins Book "The Orthodox Heretic", for awhile now. I have just been reading bits and pieces at a time. The passage below really challenged me and encouraged me to love in a transforming way.

"Jesus' understanding of Forgiveness was so radical because he did not need people to repent before he would accept them. He did not require a change in their behavior before he loved, respected, and related to them. Yet, it was precisely this unconditional love and forgiveness that seemed so potent and transformative, often being the very act that drew people to repentance (a word that means to have a change of heart)." - Peter Rollins, The Orthodox Heretic

I agree with Rollins on the point above. I really believe that he is speaking the heart of Christ. Jesus did not look into the eyes of a "Prostitute" and see a prostitute, but he looked into her eyes and saw one of God's children that he dearly loved. Jesus showed people how much he loved them and accepted them despite their sins and failures. Christ never said, "Change your life and I will love you." The love that Christ showed to others was so transformative that people desired to change their lives to be like him.

As a believer in Christ, why do we want everyone to believe exactly what we believe before we accept them? Why do we indoctrinate people? Why do we try to conform people to our beliefs and standards of living? Why don't we love people no matter what their beliefs are, or no matter how they live their lives? Why don't we stop trying to transform people ourselves? If you want to transform someone's life, love them, and let the love of Christ do the transforming work.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this quote from Rollins Book and on anything else said here on this post.

American Dream

What is the American Dream? The American Dream is to work hard in order to make a lot of money, so that you can purchase a nice house, a nice car, and eventually retire and reap the benefits of your hard work. The American Dream can be very appealing. Since I got married and started working full time, I feel a deep urgency to provide for "My Family", meaning my wife. As a Husband you want to make choices that benefit your family and help bring security to your lives. Its almost as if my instinct turned toward pursuit of the "American Dream". I want to work harder in order to make more money, so that my family might be more "comfortable". When I took a moment to reflect on my life, I thought, why am I in pursuit of this vanity? This is not going to make me happier, make my marriage happier, or even make my life better. This pursuit to accumulate will drain me of my happiness. Lets set something straight, I am not saying that work is bad, or working to save for a house is bad. My mindset was off, and my focus was off. I work in order to pay for necessities, and I work hard because of the pride that I have in how I represent myself. These are not bad things, but if they become my goal and my aim, then I am just running no where on treadmill. My Dream is that my life might be a representation of love. The way I work might be a representation of love. The way that I use my money might be a representation of love. I want my life to be a whole lot less about me, and more about others.

So I ask you, have you ever found yourself pursuing the "American Dream"? How do you personally keep a balance in life, without losing focus on goals that you might have?


Do you ever have moments in your life when you could care less about acting in love towards someone? I have times in my life where I am so in the moment of something going on within me, that nothing could get me to love. I guess it is my stubborn nature, or selfishness. My selfishness tells me that I do not need to love in that moment, because what I feel about a situation is more important. I hate to love when I am pissed off, or not at all in the mood. Love is the last thing on my mind. You might be thinking that I am heartless or how could someone not want to love, but the truth of the matter is, we all have these moments. We all are selfish and can become consumed by moments of anger, hatred, stubbornness, and selfishness. The way that I am wired is I need time away from a situation to recollect my thoughts. I need a moment alone to be contemplative. The other night I had a moment where I walked outside and I looked up and saw the stars. I stopped in the street and realized that the world was bigger than these small moments of frustration or selfishness. So what if I don't get my way or people don't act the way I want them to. For some reason it took the stars that night to bring my life into reality. The reality of this world full of hurt and pain much greater than my arguments. The reality of a great need to share love with others and be love to others. So tonight I thank the stars for reminding me of the world greater than my own. Thanks for letting me reflect with you.