Please, Someone Turn Off the Electricity

posted by Jeffrey on Wednesday, August 30, 2006 at 8:07 AM

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Electricity is a strange and mysterious thing. If you touch something that results in a small electric shock, your hand will be knocked right off it, leaving simply a tingling sensation. However, touch something with a higher electric charge and you may receive quite a painful (or fatal) shock that results in the inability to let go of the object that is delivering the shock. It's quite interesting really, the larger amount of electricity actually makes the muscles contract, making it impossible to release.

As God continues to reveal erroneous ideas and beliefs, programmed into me by the institution of the church, of who He is and how He relates to us, I find something similar to electricity. Some of the less shocking "doctrines", "theologies", etc, are easy to let go of and nearly knock my hand off of themselves altogether. However, the underlying and over-arching ideas and doctrines that, like electricity, are the most painful and hurtful, seem to foster the inability to let go. Ironically, the longer a person holds on to the item delivering the shock (i.e. those big, painful, doctrines), the greater their chance of permanent injury or death.

Fortunately, anyone and everyone can be resurrected from this death. All it takes is the realization of the grace and unconditional love of Christ.

Along those same lines, I'm looking forward to a book coming out soon. It's called The Diety Formerly Known as God (click here to read an excerpt). Hmm, do you think it's a coincidence that so many people in all different parts of the world are waking up to the same things regarding the love of God?

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My Cubicle

posted by Jeffrey on Tuesday, August 29, 2006 at 5:48 PM

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This one's going out to all my eight to four peeps. Everything in this gem of a video/song was true of my life until two months ago...all except for the last line of the song (which I won't give away).

Some people really thrive off of this sort of job, but I'm more and more grateful for our new business with Arbonne every day.

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I Got Tagged

posted by Jeffrey on Monday, August 28, 2006 at 8:44 AM

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My dog Kyle, from Canada, just tagged me . This is gonna be hard, because I've never been a big reader, but here it goes:

(and sorry, I'm not linking all these up)

1. One book that changed your life: Hmm, I can't say one single book I've read has changed my life.
2. One book that you've read more than once: Ha ha, I've only just started reading books completely through in the past couple of years...I haven't even thought of reading one twice!
3. One book you'd want on a desert island: How to Turn Sand into Water; hey, the question didn't say it had to be real.
4. One book that made you laugh:
5. One book that made you cry: The Last Battle (last book in the Chronicles of Narnia) by C.S. Lewis
6. One book you wish had been written: Not Relating to God Solely & Vicariously Through the Writings Compiled in the Bible. Yeah, I know the title is long, but oh well.
7. One book you wish had never been written: I'm gonna agree with Kyle and say The Prayer of Jabez...give me a freakin' break.
8. One book you're currently reading: Dare to Dream and Work to Win by Dr. Tom Barrett
9. One book you've been meaning to read: the Great Divorce by C.S. Lewis
10. Tag 6 others: Sam Davidson, Jim Palmer, Rick Harris, Gary Morgan, John O'Keefe, Ginger Swann: if you're reading this post — write your books in the comments or post them on your blog and let me know in the comments!

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My Weekend O' Fun

posted by Jeffrey on Sunday, August 27, 2006 at 6:54 PM

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Whew, what a weekend! Friday night the wife and I kayaked out to luau island on good ole' J. Percy Priest lake (via Elm Hill Marina) with some friends to camp. There's a two tent limit on the isle and fortunately for us we were the only people there! Campfire, glow sticks, junk food, pipes, cigars, and good convoy, how do you beat that?

Saturday I went with a buddy to Hardee's Buzzfest 6. We got there thirty minutes before the gates opened and stayed about six hours, and yes, the temp was in the mid ninety's for the majority of that time. The blazing hot sun coupled with my refusal to remove my sunglasses (super-sensitive eyes) proved to be the perfect recipe for my lovely "racoon tan" I currenty have going on. Anyway, though they were the first band to play on the main stage (which normally means they suck), Ligion (no, not misspelled) was as good as any band there! I'll be downloading some of their tunes. Black Stone Cherry, another band we purposely wanted to catch, definitely put on the best stage show. I also came to a conclusion while there on Saturday, I would prefer to NOT see the majority of the population without their shirts on...guys and girls alike. I'll stop there.

Today, Shaunna and I caught a matinee of Little Miss Sunshine. Oh my gosh! Freaking hilarious. Dark and sadistic, but hilarious! A note to fellow movie goers, if you have a problem with liberal use of the "f" bomb, you're gonna want to avoid this flick. But if you don't, then I'll quote my blog bud Sam Davidson and say, "walk, run, or push your van to the theatre."

Whew, what a long, but fun, weekend.

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An Explanation of This Description

posted by Jeffrey on Friday, August 25, 2006 at 9:55 AM

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So what? Why explain the description of my own blog? Because it is not really what this blog is about. Some may say, "yes it is, it's most always the topic at hand", to which I would reply, "is it really?" So allow your eyes to wander to the upper right corner of the page, that white, italicized, text reads, "Chronicling the mysterious adventure of learning what it means to BE Church, not go to it..."

It's true, meditating on what it means to BE Church was the thought that first allowed me to scratch the surface of the real, underlying topics I talk about here, but that is all. It was merely the toe deep water I found myself in that afforded the opportunity to hear the call of the deep. However, if that were all I muse about here, essentially, I would be talking about a style of doing church, and hence I would be compelled to label it so that others may duplicate it and realize how cutting edge I am (and I'm desperately restraining from providing annoying examples, at this moment).

So I know my 20-30 visitors per day aren't necessarily huge commenters (which is totally cool with me), but I'm curious, what do yall think I'm actually dealing with here.

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A Note to All My Fellow Southerners...

posted by Jeffrey on Tuesday, August 22, 2006 at 8:19 AM

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...who still fail to realize that Christendom is dead. Seriously, can we PLEASE stop referring to "biblical principles" and speaking in our native learned tongue of Christianeze, assuming total strangers and the whole of society actually know (or care) what we are talking about.

These habits and practices are destructive on many levels, and quite frankly, it needs to be stopped. Much to the popular belief of the church sub-culture, we do not live in a "Christian" society any longer. As a matter of fact, it's been a while since we have.

So please, I know you mean well, but attempt to acclimate yourselves and each other into our culture, living the love of Christ there, rather than continuing to create a sub-culture that mirrors the ideals of Constantine (the emporer, not the movie).

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Cool People Care

posted by Jeffrey on Monday, August 21, 2006 at 8:00 AM

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Sam Davidson, a local Nashville social justice, spirituality, and life blogger, has recently launced a very innovative and much needed site called CoolPeopleCare. From the site: "CoolPeopleCare is the web resource for people who want to make a difference. Browse our site; you'll find practical ideas, helpful hints, and local events, all aimed at motivating you to change your world."

Get off your butt, err, home page, go check it out, and spend five minutes towards changing the world...

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Canada Needs Money

posted by Jeffrey on Friday, August 18, 2006 at 10:30 AM

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One of my very best friends in the world is off to the land of our neighbors to the north. That's right Lacey is off to Vancouver for a year to work with a unique new church in formation. Because this church isn't all about making money (thank God!), she's gonna need some financial help to survive in maple leaf land.

If you feel so inclined, and I do hope that you do, you can donate to Lacey's totally secure, online piggy bank at Any amount would be totally helpful and all donations are 100% tax exempt. So please, open up your heart and help a sista out.

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Crucify Him! Crucify Him!

posted by Jeffrey on Tuesday, August 15, 2006 at 10:30 AM

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Just a short rant to express both my tiredness and disappointment in the reaction to Mel Gibson's drunken statements. First off, I can't believe this is still a popular topic of media convo. I actually heard one show early this morning say, "He crossed a line, what he said is unforgivable."

*Cue the dull roar of the mob in their mantra, "crucify him, crucify him!"*

Secondly, as much as I hate it, we all have prejudices. We all stereotype. We all say things we don't mean (whether it's in a drunken stupor or not). If what Mel said was "unforgivable", then we all deserve to be burned alive for our prejudices and silent (or not so) hatred of people unlike us.

*Fade to clip of the movie Crash*

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Point for Point

posted by Jeffrey on Sunday, August 13, 2006 at 1:37 PM

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This week I have decided to end a chapter in the story of my life. I no longer see value in sitting across a table from someone, sipping on a cup of joe, going point for point against each other regarding spiritual, theological, or "religious" things. My reason, no good can come of it.

In such a conversation where a person intellectually proves that they are right, what happens? Normally, the person being "proven" wrong gets pissed, and the relationship is critically injured and eventually dies. The "victor" in this scenario has the short-lived pleasure of gloating over their intellectual supremacy, but at what expense? The loss of a friend. What kind of world is it that we live in where being right is of more value than relationships, more valuable than love?

Of course there are many different scenarios that could play out in a point for point conversation, but they all have similar results. Whether the conversants are best friends or strangers, it matters not. People still suffer, love is suppressed, and no one really "wins". The gamble is great and the chips are raked into the abyss of human pride.

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I'd Rather Not Know

posted by Jeffrey on Friday, August 11, 2006 at 9:53 AM

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For the past three days in a row I've been involved in the same conversation with three different people. The convo has been that of the subconscious quintessential need people (myself included) have to label everything! I've been thinking, what good can that possibly do?

For example, I'm sitting at Panera with a guy the other day and we're having a pleasant conversation. The convo moves to topics that can be uncomfortable, if the people involved see things differently, which was the case in our situation. Immediately the guy across the table says, "so you're a liberal." My reply, as it normally is, was, "I prefer not to be pigeon-holed into one certain category. On some things you might call me a liberal, on others you may call me conservative. That's why I don't contain myself to one camp or the other."

So I have decided that I think it would be better if I didn't know if people around me "went to church", or what "church" they went to, or what "denomination they were", or what party they voted, or whether or not they were an atheist, new age, Christian, dispensationalist, Calvinist, fundamentalist, universalist, etc. I mean, can you imagine what our relationships would be like if, from the beginning, we didn't view them through lenses jaded by presuppositions? What if we could just talk and get to know people outside of what they call themselves. What if we just loved each other?

Its funny, we so freely and flippantly label things, people, and ourselves without realizing that no one really falls solely into one "category" or the other...and if someone does, then that's just sad.

An aside: wow, this is my fifth straight day to post, I must have a lot on my mind...

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Cell Phone Woes

posted by Jeffrey on Thursday, August 10, 2006 at 7:09 PM

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Its finally August and our Sprint family plan contract is up! Hooray! To the trash with the crappy service and $75/month for a 500 minute plan (that we share, mind you). Unfortunately, my joy is capped by an even larger dilemma, what carrier do we switch to?

The obvious choice seems to be Verizon, but hold up, they're one of the anti-net neutrality big boys. (Crap, wish I could afford Comcast HighSpeed Internet and do away with my Bellsouth DSL for the same reason.) So if you take away Verizon, you have Cingular and Sprint, essentially. Well we already know I'm NOT renewing with Sprint, so that leaves Cingular, who is not the cheapest of the three (nor do they have the best features or phones--that's Verizon). So now we're back to square one, Verizon is the cheapest for the minutes, best features, best phones--ugh.

I checked into T-Mobile....that's a no. I thought my lucky day had come when I saw an ad for Alltel so I Googled them and found their homepage. I researched the whole "MyCircle" thing and it seemed PERFECT! But oh, wait, they advertise in areas where they apparently don't provide service (like all of TN). Double ugh.

So does anyone have any advice (backed up with reasons) on who a good alterative would be? Keep in mind it'll be a family share package with my wife and sharing the minutes.

UPDATE:8/11/06: It appears that Comcast is indeed a net neutrality enemy as well. I guess that means anyone in Nashville who wants high speed internet is part of the problem, rather than the solution, by default....that sucks.

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Lebanon Fuel Spill

posted by Jeffrey on Wednesday, August 09, 2006 at 12:03 PM

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Ok, so I try not to blog much about the whole mid-east conflict (largely b/c I'm not entirely sure what I think about it), but this image is just sad.Yup, that's a GoogleEarth image of a fuel spill from a Lebanon Power Plant that Israel recently bombed. The image shows the fuel contaminating more than 70 miles of coastline.

HT: NiT, Bloomberg, & MRD

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The Universe--Yeah, Its Big

posted by Jeffrey on Tuesday, August 08, 2006 at 1:16 PM

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CNN Space and Science had a headline today that read, "Study: Universe bigger, older than expected." Here's an exerpt:

Scientists now estimate the universe to be about 13.7 billion years old (a figure that has seemed firm since 2003, based on measurements of radiation leftover from the Big Bang) and about 156 billion light-years wide.

The new finding implies that the universe is instead about 15.8 billion years old and about 180 billion light-years wide.
Whoa, that size and age is beyond even the limits of my imagination, much less my comprehension. I have two unrelated thoughts on the topic. The first is that it seems arrogant to think that we're the only life forms in such a huge expanse of space. The second is that I'm dumbfounded by the imagination and creativity that God exercised in creating such a cosmos. I wonder why He did.

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The Gift We'll Give Our Children

posted by Jeffrey on Monday, August 07, 2006 at 11:29 AM

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My wife and I plan to give our children a great gift, and one that we will continually give from their very first day on this planet. (No, to all who are hoping, Shaunna is not pregnant, lol.) This gift will be one that empowers them to have, do, and imagine whatever they want, with no limitations. It will be a gift that most of us in the western world have not been given, not because of our parents, but because of our culture.

Our culture and society teaches us, contrary to our beliefs as children, that we CANNOT do, be, think, or have anything we want. I mean seriously, think about it, what did you want to be as a child? Did you live up to that dream? If not, why? Because our world says, "Oh that's silly, you can't do that." Can't, can't, can't, the most destructive word in our English vocabulary.

Somewhere early in our lives, most of us began believing, albeit subconsciously, the "can't" statements we heard all around us. Can you imagine what would have happened if we had of all heard "can" statements instead? I look forward to learning from my children as they, one day, grown in life being told that they can do, be, have, think, and imagine anything they want to. I can scarcely imagine what their lives will look like, void of the baggage that "can't" brings.

No, I'm obviously not talking about anarchy. I'm not talking about telling them they can run around sticking forks in outlets just because the want to. I'm referring to their paradigm and fundamental thought process. Whether it be something temporal, contained to this world, or something in their spirit, that is eternal, they will know that they CAN achieve it.

I say, "I sure wish I could live my entire life through the love of Christ in me", and my human-ness immediately counters with, "yeah, but you can't." What an incredible life it will be for our children to know that they can.

The Price of Being Right

posted by Jeffrey on Friday, August 04, 2006 at 8:38 AM

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"If you have to choose between being right and hurting a relationship...or being kind and healing a relationship...choose being kind."

I read that this morning. More times than not, "being right" is of no value.

Health & Wellness Success!

posted by Jeffrey on Tuesday, August 01, 2006 at 6:03 PM

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Woo hoo! I just had to get the word out that as of today, August 1st, 2006, my wife and I promoted to District Managers with Arbonne International. We started our own home based business with this revolutionary health and wellness company on June 1st and have obviously made progress that we're very pleased with in these two months.

Can I just say that I am SOOOO much happier working from home then I ever was sitting behind a desk from 9:00-5:00 working for someone else? Of course, there are many out there who thrive on the 9:00-5:00, but I am not among them. I'm a bit too much of a free spirit.

Next stop...the top.

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