Archive for March, 2008

On Sarcasm

Posted 25 Mar 2008 — by nick
Category Blogs, Darkness, Light, Ministry, Spirituality

As of late the topic of sarcasm seems to rest heavy on my mind and heart. The Easter season has something to do with it – bringing me to remembrance of hope and joy and reason for celebration. For me these stand in strong contrast to a sarcastic demeanor.

When I find myself being really sarcastic I also find myself being very critical. Other people’s sarcasm and critical spirit infects me, I know this to be true, leading me to believe the same goes for the other direction. When I’m reading blogs that are overly sarcastic and critical of the Church and others, I fall into agreement and it builds divisions in my heart between myself and others trying to follow Jesus. In a community I find a critical spirit to be a slow, dry, rot, deteriorating the foundation and threatening collapse.

Today, in google reader, I unsubscribed to a blog I enjoyed at first for it’s witty satire and tongue-in-cheek-ness. Since that honeymoon phase all posts have continued in the same sarcastic vein with rare glimpses of hope and hardly any encouragement. The decision to stop reading comes in hopes to keep my spirit from being divisive and to keep it from being crushed under the weight of a bleak outlook on life and the Church.

This is something I’m still working through, I don’t know that I’d say sarcasm is always wrong and always hurtful, I think I’m just coming to a realization that it’s often a cheap laugh and at someone’s (or organization’s) expense and therefore hardly edifying.

What do you think?

Now playing: jon foreman – In My Arms
via FoxyTunes

Cure for the Pain

Posted 25 Mar 2008 — by nick
Category Darkness, Friends, Jesus, Light, music, Spirituality

Tonight while hanging out with the Dawgs “Cure for the Pain” by Jon Foreman filled our small dinning room. This song pulls tears from me no matter the emotional state I’m in. The cause: maybe the sadness in Jon’s voice, maybe the ways it reminds me of how I’ve tried to cure my pain, or the ways I know trying to run would simply be a lie. Either way, tonight it causes me to stop and reflect on the healing journey God has me on and how these days I don’t feel quite as lonely as I once did. The tears change from ones of sadness to ones of thankfulness and remembrance.

And here tonight while the stars are blacking out
With every hope and dream I’ve ever had in doubt
I’ve spent ten years trying to sing these doubts away
But the water keeps on falling from my eyes

And heaven knows, heaven knows
I tried to find a cure for the pain
Oh my lord! to suffer like you do
It would be a lie to run away

Tomorrow Spring the next seasonal EP is released and I’ll be picking it up for sure. You can get it the EP’s here.

Palm Sunday: Jesus Triumphant Entry

Posted 17 Mar 2008 — by nick
Category coffee, Jesus, Light, Scripture, Spirituality

“Happy Palm Sunday!”

That’s how Josh Wondra greeted me this morning as I stirred from sleep and trudged to the couch with my coffee.

Palm Sunday, it’s been on my mind all day – thinking about the beginning of Holy Week. About Jesus riding in to Jerusalem on a donkey, his followers laying cloaks and branches before him and singing praises.

They brought the donkey and the colt, placed their cloaks on them, and Jesus sat on them. A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted,
“Hosanna to the Son of David!”
“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”
“Hosanna in the highest!”
Matthew 19:7-9

I’ve decided, as in years past, to reflect on the Easter Story throughout the week. This time I plan to save the Resurrection accounts until Sunday and focus on the events that transpired the days before the Crucifixion. Today I studied the Jesus Triumphant Entry, tomorrow I’ll look at Matthew’s account of the events.

My hope and prayer for you all: That you’d find time to stop and reflect, meditate on the Easter Story and let God draw your heart more to Him and respond in praise. After all He replied “if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.

Now playing: Jon Foreman – Learning How to Die
via FoxyTunes

PS: The picture for this post is one claiming to be of the gate at Jerusalem Jesus is said to have entered on the first Palm Sunday.

Music: Turrell and Foreman

Posted 15 Mar 2008 — by nick
Category Friends, music, Poetry, Winter

On recommendation of Paste Magazine I recently picked up Ford Turrell‘s debut album and Jon Foreman’s Fall and Winter EP’s.

To say I’m pleased with these finds would be an understatement.

The Jon Foreman EPs weren’t to much of a risk – I’ve been a long running fan of Switchfoot and Jon’s song writing. Raw, real and emotional come to mind as I stretch to describe them. The depressing undercurrent of Winter makes me think Jon and I might share some of the same predisposition to seasonal sadness (come soon Spring!).
Favorite Tracks: Behind Your Eyes (amazing track), A Cure for the Pain, Equally Skilled

Because of my affinity for Ray LaMontagne‘s work, I picked this album up. I might describe Ford’s style as a pleasing middle between the smoky voice and poetic lyrics of Ray LaMontagne and the folk sound and easy of Amos Lee. By the third spinning of this album I had decided I liked it, it took a couple listens, not an instant favorite. The same was true for Ray and Amos for me though. I’m glad I gave it a couple spins, it’s becoming a favorite.
Favorite Tracks: The Stillest Hour, Listen to Your Heartbeat

Now playing: Jon Foreman – Learning How to Die
via FoxyTunes

New Toy, I Mean Phone

Posted 13 Mar 2008 — by nick
Category Apple, Fun, Movies, music, News, Technology

This has always been more of an inevitable thing, my friends asking “when are you going to get one?” instead of “are you going to get one?”

It’s been about 3 weeks now since I purchased my iPhone, it’s sexy 🙂

Overall I’m happy with it, though it definitely shows the signs of an early product still being developed. Biggest complaints: iCal doesn’t support multiple calendars, wireless has known issues which make it interesting here on campus, and there is no way to delete learned wireless networks.

Apple announced the iPhone SDK last week for developers to be able to build custom applications for the iPhone as well as promised support for Microsoft Exchange making the iPhone more corporate friendly.

Now playing: The Fratellis – Flathead
via FoxyTunes

I’m So White

Posted 12 Mar 2008 — by nick
Category Blogs, Friends, Fun

Recently Amy brought it to my attention, with the help of this blog, that I am white. Examples of my whiteness: being a vegetarian, running marathons, snowboarding, listening to public radio, a love for indie music, a love for the outdoors, the list goes on and on. Basically reading this blog I feel pretty pegged.

They nailed it today though: Outdoor Performance Clothing.

I walk around with a smile wearing my ARC’TERYX fleece or my Mountain Hardwear conduit softshell, knowing my jackets are super sweet even if others don’t know the logo or the brand and that I paid more for them than you would think reasonable. A grin and kinship sparks when I see another gear nerd sporting their outerwear and we sigh at the frat-boy strutting in his North Face fleece oblivious to the fabric technology and engineering that has gone into his pop culture status symbol.

A related blog, I’ve found pretty hilarious: White Whine, IE things white people whine about.

Now playing: Snow Patrol – Chocolate
via FoxyTunes

EOH, Tesla Coils and A Cute Girl

Posted 10 Mar 2008 — by nick
Category Uncategorized

Forgive me for the lack of postes lately, I try to stay in the habit of posting at least something brief during weeks when I’m far to busy for any good. Work has returned to a state of crazy on the busyness and stress levels, which leaves me exhausted by the end of a work day.

This weekend – though shorter than normal thanks to “spring forward” – was a lot of fun. It was EOH (which if you remember from last year, gets me really excited).

This year there was a special “concert” on Friday night; some footage I found on the YouTubes :

EOH and musical Tesla Coils would have been fun in themselves, the unique thing this year though was getting to experience them with a really cute girl. Those that know me well, know it’s important for me to be able to share my excitement and passions with others. I feel like I was able to do that this weekend.

Now playing: Caedmon’s Call – What You Want
via FoxyTunes

PS: The desire to build a tesla coil and proudly wear my electrical enginerd badge has been rekindled. Meaning I’m searching for circuit diagrams and such on the interwebs.