Saturday, December 25, 2004

X-Mas 04: Special Report

"The Lord gives and the Lord takes away." Dang right He does. Guess what my parents gave me as a gift? The freakin' Star Wars Trilogy DVD Box Set - in widescreen! I found myself hugging the box and staring at it. Such joy.

But yes, the Lord takes away. Guess what happens just a few hours after receiving the gift, just as I inserted Disc 4 (Special Features) into the player? THE PICTURE WENT OUT ON OUR CURTES MATHIS 25" SCREEN TV!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And it was only two years old. Yeah, millions of my brothers and sisters are suffering for their faith year wide, celebrating this sacred day with the shadow of death and torture around them, and my biggest complaint is that my TV is broken. Yeah, yeah. Reality check. But hey, the DVDs are now mine, my own, mmyyyy prrecious.

Moving on, this edition of The Rime comes from the lovely Klein homestead, here in frosty Overgaard, AZ. The Kleins are like a beloved second family to me. Tad, the eldest heir, is about a year or so my senior, and could be the best of all possible friends. We've known each other since I was in my High School freshman year, and he in his sophmore. God's brought us through a lot together. Allison is stuck in the middle, and I've seen her grow from just being Tad's little sister into a beautiful young woman who's bursting with promise for the Kingdom. She's a fantastic athlete in the fields of volley and softball, and more so then in physical training, she has been refined in the fire's of life and I hope and pray that she continues on the path on which God's set her. The youngest is Shawna, and comparing her to the Shawna I met when I moved here in 2000 is a stark contrast. She was in 5th grade then. This past August, she entered Moggollon High School. Yep, big change. The Klein parents are great too. Duke and Kate are true servants in the church, and exercise their talents well.

The moral of the story: Christmas is so much more then presents, it's also about communion, with each other and, of course, with God, who has done such things to His glory. We're on a journey together, as they say at Sojourn Church, "till Christ is formed in us." The church catholic is also the church militant. We're an army-family. So............................

Foreward march.

Saturday, December 18, 2004

Party Hearty WITH UPDATE

One week to Christmas exactly. It fills like it in Overgaard. The air is bitterly cold and you can still see patches of snow scattering the ground. However, I'm in Mesa, Arizona, one of the many cities in the Phoenix Metro area. The weather plays to Scrooges, and coincidently, many of his peers flock to this Valley every winter. Right now it's a gorgeous 70 some odd degrees outside. The only hint of typical holiday c0mes from the White Elephant gift exchange in which my relatives are about to partake, and sadly, I too will be involved with it. My inclusion in the grown-ups game means my exclusion from the massive gifts reaped by "the children." Translation: I'm not getting $75 in Wal-Mart gift cards. It's ironic eh? Now that I'm an "adult", that "I'm on my own," "living in the real world," I actually need the money. Darn it.

That said, it's good to be in Arizona because I really love this place. Sadly though, it feels less and less like home every sucessive trip. Maybe that's a good thing, I don't know. Maybe I'll see it more as a mission field, who knows.

Well, the youngens' are starting to open their gifts. I think I'll just sniffle softly.

UPDATE: I got the sweetest thing in the White Elephant gift exchange. It's (drum roll please) Truth or Dare Jenga! With questions like "How Many Times Have You Been In Love" or "Describe Your Idea of a Perfect Date," this thing has "Mixed Company" written all over it. The Spring Semester won't know what hit it! Feliz Navidad!

Friday, December 10, 2004

27 Days Later From Now

In approximately 13 hours from my writing of this, I will be on an airplane bound southwards to Atlanta followed by an airplane bound West. Destination: Beautiful, aka, Arizona. I will be home for a short short time, during which I hope to reconnect with family and friends, read some good books that I want to read outside of a classroom, promote this wonderful yet warted school I at which I study, and especially, in the midst of all of the hustle and bustle, to rest. I hope that all these things will be done for the Kingdom and the glory of its King.

At the end of these 27 days in a not perfect paradise, I will return to Louisville, to get ready for another semester, starting with a "J" term week long class. Life will continue onwards from there. There will be new students to meet, old friendships to rekindle, and ministry in which to passionately labor. Theology will be discussed, late nights will be spent in study and conversation, and the inevitable and unexpected fires of life will drive us to our knees, to our Father, and closer to each other. Hopefully, I will learn with the future in mind, doing my time here so that I might one day be there, wherever there may be. And also, who knows? Perhaps I might meet a special someone. You never know. I know I sure don't.

But that doesn't start until 27 days expire. It's time to return to my original life, now that I live in a bifurcated existence. This then is my prayer: God take me. I'm unlikely to give myself up on my own.

All I ever really wanted was to sweep you off your feet,
To ride in like a white knight shining, and fight to victory.
But I forgot You weren't a prisoner, nor I a noble Sir,
That I was the one who needed saving and only You could do.

'Cause I'm just a hopeless romantic, and only You can help me.
Only You can wake me up, to see what love really is.
Only You had the key to open up my heart,
To let the sunlight flood its caverns and chase away the dark.

You rode in like a great warrior and I laid down my rights.
Content to be, just a servant but that wasn't on Your mind.
The crimson flood swept me away; don't know the reason why.
Now I've got a new heart, got a new name. I'm a son and I have life.

'Cause I'm just a hopeless romantic, and only You can help me.
Only You can wake me up, to see what love really is.
Only You had the key to open up my heart,
To let the sunlight flood its caverns and chase away the dark.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004


I wrote this a long time ago, but it reflects where I'm at.

I reckon' that if I love you more everyday,
Eventually I will love you as I should.
And if I learn to love you as my Father,
I understood why you love me as Your Son.

Saturday, December 04, 2004

Beating a Dead Cow to Death, Part Tres

Yes. I've posted on relationships. Alot. This is the last one.

Alot of people here are obsessed with marriage, and perhaps the fact I've been blogging about it so much has indicated that I too am infected with the bug. This comment is not prescriptive, it's simply philosophical.

Why is so much attention given to getting married? I don't want to get married anytime soon, at least not now. You see, there's a little pre-req I haven't met yet.

I need to fall in love first.

Love before marriage? What a novel concept.

Wednesday, December 01, 2004


Tomorrow will see the continuance of a tradition of mine. Shortly before 9 pm, as I prepare to head out the door, I will head to my desk, open the top drawer on the left, and remove a letter envelope. It bears this warning on it:


Inside the envelope is "The Finals Pen."

It started about this time last year. I needed a pen for my final exams, as I was in need of one, because all mine were either missing or out of ink. (I still have this problem. I've bought 4 new pens this semester, and all of them are AWOL. That is frickin' ridiculous. But back to the story.) So, I headed to LifeWay and purchased a pen for about one dollar and change. But it wasn't just any pen, it was a pen with a purpose. Lightening struck my brain: Why not use it for all my finals, and more then that, why not use it only for finals, and for every single final to come. That is what I have done.

The finals pen has chilled through two Draper blue books, two of T.J. Betts, Dr. Orrick's trumped up grammar quiz, the ease of Randy Smith, and the blessing of McClellan's not-from-hell final. It has uses beyond just exams though. If, in lieu of a final, we have a paper or assignment to turn in, it is used for that. It signed the honor pledge on the research paper I presented to Mr. Pierre, and it will fill out the forms I turn in to Dr. Payne this Tues.

After every completed final I go back to my room and open the catalog from the 03-04 academic year, the one I entered under, and the course listing to which I am bound. I take the pen and I draw a line through the class listing in the "Missions, Evangelism, and Church Growth" major, making me just that much closer to the cap and gown.

The moral of this story: Paul Butterworth is a bigger geek then you even imagined, and in the words of Han Solo, "I can imagine an awful lot."