Thursday, October 1, 2009

Oregon Stand-up Paddle Boarding

My wife was quoted in this Oregon Coast Today article on the emerging sport of Stand-up Paddle Boarding. Donna and I have paddled the Ocean (on calm days), up deserted rivers, and across shallow tidewater bays. The scenery is surreal but the excercize us very, very real.

The article starts on Page 12 .

Friday, July 31, 2009

A Definition of Wealth

The work day was nearly done. My 19 year old son, Joel, stopped by the house and busted through the front door with enough energy to light the neighborhood.
"Dad, let's go surfing. Its goin' off," the universal surf phrase meaning the surf is really good. And it was.

So we did. We surfed for almost three hours. Snagging waves, riding them through 3 - 5 - or maybe 8 turns if we were lucky. As one of us was paddling back out, the other was riding one in. We shared the glassy head high waves with only one other surfer right out in front of the house.

I couldn't escape the deep sense of wealth, a notion I had during the entire session. It is the ancient Hebrews, I think, and other ancient cultures, who defined wealth as not what you possess but rather whom you have around you. The ancient world defined wealth in the number of healthy family members, extended family, farms and cattle, and relational connections with influencial and healthy people. It was never about stuff. It was never about the size of my 401k or the the number of homes I own or how fat my eTrade account is. It was always the extended network of who a person was connected to.... who they are "with".

Tomorrow I will feel sore and creaky from the paddling. Today I feel wealthy. I am wealthy.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Neue Quarterly Article - The Hero Culture

Here's a link to a recent story I wrote for Neue Quarterly. The article is called "The Hero Culture" and draws parallels between the drivenness and narcisism found within extreme sports and the similar dynamics that often creep into Christian leadership. For me, there is much joy in doing good things for hurting people from behind the scenes... things nobody else really knows about.

Neue Quarterly is a leadership journal put out by Relevant Media Group.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Christianity Today - Radical Faith

The Feb issue of Christianity Today hit the shelves last week. I wrote a story on My Search for Radical Faith that landed on page 36. If you took the time to read it, I'd love to hear from you. If so, what made the biggest impact on you?

Of all the articles I've written, the process behind writing this one effected me the most - so far anyway. I had originally written this at the request of Relevant Magazine. But after I submitted the first draft to the editorial staff, without much explanation, they asked me to change the direction. But that direction - and the surprise ending - was something I could never change because it had so deeply effected me.

In a twist, a fellow Judson University alum, Ed Gilbreath at Urban Ministries in Chicago, referred the story to a CT editor who really loved it.

Here is a link to the web version. I'd say "enjoy the read", but if you genuinely read the story, joy is probably not the first emotion that you'll have. So... umm... more peace on you then.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Catching a Monster

I'm not much of a fisherman, unless you count hooking into seagulls and seaweed as requiring skill. But this got my attention.

These guys are friends of a friend. They were fishing the Willamette River here in Oregon a few weeks ago and caught this 1000 pound Sturgeon.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Lawyer Jokes become Banker Jokes

After my own battles with Countrywide Mortgage Services (which I will begin blogging about separately), and the realization that banks have received billions of dollars without lending it back to struggling consumers, I propose a new rule to the committee that manages global joke telling. Here is my suggested language:
Rule 5150: From this point forward, herewith and thereforeto, we, the committee for the ethical treatment of jokes and their telling, do hereby determine that "lawyers" are no longer to be used to represent the lowest degree of human behavior within jokes and their telling.

Henceforth, "bankers" and/or "mortgage company executives" will be used in their place. Bankers and Mortgage Company Executives (aka MCE's) may be treated as mutually low and interchangeable in context.
Ok, get the word out there and have fun telling "banker jokes".

Saturday, January 10, 2009

My Christianity Today Story about Radical Faith

I originally wrote this article (deleted at the request of CT editor) for Relevant Magazine. They asked for it. But when they read my final draft (Again, you'll have to read it when it comes out in CT), the managing editor of Relevant would not run it unless I agreed to significant changes. I love Relevant Mag and, to be honest, it was not clear to me what I was supposed to change exactly. But I felt it was important to leave the story as is. So I sent it that way to Christianity Today.

Actually, Ed Gilbreath made the introduction for me as he'd been an editor there for years and we went to the same college.

So, here is my four page story that comes out in the February issue. (Again, deleted because the editor at CT said I "scooped the magazine" which was really fun to hear. After I realized what the actually meant, I felt like a reporter for the Daily Planet) Should be on the shelves in a couple weeks. I look forward to hearing your feedback so please read through it and let me know what you think.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Tow Surfing a Sick Reef Break in Oregon

Click here to see more photos of a ridiculous reef break near our home in Oregon.

Recently, a local surf buddy got some pros to come up and tow-surf it. The pics came out in Surfer Magazine this month.

You might want to sit down while viewing, afterward, you'll want to go to confession.