Thursday, October 21, 2004

What's in a dream?

I don't mean the "I have a dream", dream, I mean the, "I had a dream last night dream." I have heard many scholars do their best to explain how the biological and supernatural aspects of each human interact and the products thereof. I have been encountering vivid dreams lately and they all seem to have immediate implications that come to mind immediately upon my arrival to reality. Here's one I had the other night:

I walked into the room in a rush. My heart was pounding, my mind was racing, and a heavy weight (burden) pulled at my shoulders. I ran into the room. My beautiful wife was standing, holding our seemingly large newborn in her arms. I knew in my heart I had missed the delivery of our first child. It seemed as though days had passed and this was the first opportunity for me to be there. I knew I had messed up. I knew I need to be there...for Angela...for our son...for me. Guilt, shame, and depression seized my being and I was crushed. I woke up...thankful it was just a dream.

If you know me, the probable meaning to this is a no-brainer...the UINY. Or is it just my insecurity? This, my friends, is where the question comes in. Me or God?

Also, during a break at a seminar I was attending, I sat in a chair reading Wimber's Power Healing. ( before you go thinking I'm super-pious, the reading is required...though enjoyed) As I read, a familiar lead guitar anthem began to ring through the speakers...U2's In the name of love. I had a vision of PM, myself, and other band members I never saw on a stage. I watched PM as he had his guitar hung low on a strap, right leg extended out, left leg behind him, jamming out the lead part of the song. His heart was in it...biting his lip...nodding at me in affirmation. I smiled and turned to the mic...then it was over.

We were making beautiful music in the name of love. This "band" of wannabies were doing the stuff like pros...all coming together in one mind, purpose, and vision. A beautiful portrayal of the Body.

Makes me wonder...Lord, show us how to interpret our dreams.

Monday, October 18, 2004

The Dream...

Last week, I had a very vivid dream, which I remember all of the vivid details even today. That act in itself is a miracle.

I was sitting in a car, waiting in line for a gas pump when, much to my surprise, I could see nothing but a heavy stream of water flowing in through the 3 inch gap from my window being rolled down, hitting me in the face. I quickly rolled up the window to see a late-teenaged boy, ball cap cocked sideways, stradling his bicycle, and holding a garden hose in his hands, scowling in my direction. I thought, "What a punk. I oughtta get out of my car and kick his rear end." I stared him down as he got into a little, white compact car, full of his teenage friends. Sizing up the crowd and competition, I stepped out of the car, threw my hands in the air, and yelled, "Hey, you want to go?" (And I wasn't asking him to drive away) The kid jumped out of the driver seat, ran around the back of the car and pushed me, and swung. I grabbed him, pulled him in tight to my body and barked through gritted teeth, "I'm not going to let you go. I'm not going to let you go because I love you." With that, the now sobbing teenager was desperately flailing, trying to break free from my grip. I pulled him in tight again and said, "And Jesus loves you. And all you have to do is accept him." He became more frantic, and through gushing tears screamed, " I know, I know." I pulled him in tight again and said, "Accept him!" Then, a mother/grandmotherly figure (Obviously his) entererd the scene and began telling him the same, "Listen to him." Then, I woke up. Man, what a great dream. PM, any ideas?

Last night, The Howards and several of our friends enjoyed the union of two of the most beautiful people in the world. PM, once again, performed an awesome service. One main point of PM's sermon was the term Vertigo (the state of not being able to stand by your own strength), how it affected our marriage and relationship with God. I was thinking about that term Vertigo, and how it applied to my marriage. I think if I ever lost my wife, I'd be in a world of vertigo.

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

So have I mentioned to you that I have THE best wife in the world?

Of course I have, but here's another reason. Last night, I was lamenting the day with La-La and I shared my deep concern that there are changes coming down at work and I will be affected. Good or bad...only God knows. When I was done sharing my thoughts, she blind sided me with my favorite question..."Do you want to pray about it?" I said, "Sure." Then, my wife began to pray for me and my stress and work...wow. God is good. This is the first time my wife has prayed for me outloud. Praise be to God...more of You Lord. Amen.

Saturday, October 09, 2004

This weekend is busy as a mother trucker so far. Last night, we were at PM's house for a bible study on 1 Samuel 17. Susie did a great job, as always. This morning, I pealed myself out of bed to prepare our day for softball. We played softball and Vu, PM, Mike, and I played golf. What a great time. After that, I had just enough time for a shower and we got on the road again to PM's house for the real surprise party for Vu. It was amazing...so many faces I didn't know... so many familiar faces, and good wine/beer. What a great party. I love the Hoov' fam. They're grrrrrreat. I couldn't help as I looked around at the different faces, however, to wonder where we'll all be in 10 years. Will we still know the same friends? Will we all be too busy? I can't help but wonder...which relationships am I building now that will last only as God allows, and the Howards are pulled out of their comfort zone. All the well...for the time being, we'll just enjoy who we have. I love you all!

Thursday, October 07, 2004

Alright...So I'm 1/2 way to the high-tech age. This is my first post from home. You got it! This cheapskate finally bought a computer and got the net. (Okay, so I am operating on a 6-month "free" period from AOL) Gotta say, nothing like sitting in your camouflage camping chair in your Tommy boxers, sipping a good glass of 3-Buck Chuck, and Blogging...PM, this one's for you.

I never claimed to be the sharpest axe in the toolshed...

I was smart enough to prewire my house for the line in which I am communication thru. (I ran it with the other two when no one was around and Qwest hooked it up for me like it came with the house) I then took pictures of me holding the tape measure from some good location so that I could find the wire later...smart. I cut a hole in my wall at the axis, dug around the insulation, found the wire, and pulled it out. I proceeded to size it up, and cut off the excess CAT-5E cable. After researching which 2 of the 8 wires to use, I quickly un ravelled the two that were together and proceed to bite the insulation from the copper wires to expose the copper...

all of a sudden, I saw a bright white flash and my jaw hurt...oh, yeah, dummy!!! That stuff's hot! Yep, nothing like being zapped in the melon my "low" voltage wire...yet another painful lesson.

Monday, October 04, 2004

Parents just don't understand...

This popular Eighties rap song reminds me of the generation gap between our parents' generation and the twenty-thirty-somethings. "In their day they walked 5 miles to school, in the snow, barefoot, up hill both ways..."

I can't help but to think I will actually say something like this sometime in my life. I'm sure I will say, do, and think the same things my parents are thinking right now. I will do dumb things along the way of parenting...

What I don't want to do, however, is handcuff the Holy Spirit's movement in the ministry team of my local Body. Since shortly after my experience meeting Christ, I have dreamed of being in the youth ministry full-time. I served as a servant leader at my first church in Queen Creek for over two years. When I attended my first "church camp" I served as a counselor. In that time, I dealt with whiny kids that were out of line and "in love", I set them straight. Once the conversation was done, all was well.

As I have served in my local body, I have seen our pastorship suffer from discipling, stretching, and challenging our kids. I have seen parents become irate over the smallest issue. I have seen stressed our servant leaders gracefully bow out of service because of the pressures. I have seen it...but I'm not sure it has to be that way. I have seen people want to fight me on the smallest of requirements. I mean, really, who wants to shepherd with handcuffs on? Why can't we be like Jesus and rebuke our brothers when necessary and correct them when wrong. Why can't we challenge kids to grow spiritually, socially, and emotionally without getting lashed for it later? Isn't that what we're here for? If not leading the kids to a saving, loving, sacrificing, humbled relationship with Christ, why are we there? To babysit? I'm not sure it has to be that way.

I should hope that when my children are being shepherded in the local body, I will trust the pastorship God and my Pastor have appointed to serve my children (and those like them) to stretch, disciple, challenge, and grow them without my handcuffing the workers...but then again, I am but a young and foolish youth, finding my way through ministry.

Father God, please bless our pastors. Bless them with your peace, love, and joy. Protect them from the darts of the enemy. Help us to love them for their work...We love you. Amen.

So I'm taking this VLI. It's a seminary-type school that trains and equips people eager to serve in the local body, either as a vocation or on a voluntary basis. On the first Monday night, we watch a shotty DVD recording of the main campuses orientation where the pastor seemed to spend 80% of our time introducing us to people we will most likely only meet over the phone. The most important book to this module hasn't reached my doorstep yet. Last Monday, I experienced an information overload...wow. On Sunday, we mentored with our Pastor...now we're getting somewhere. The mentoring was about preaching the word. What an awesome time with our Pastor. Praise be to God for calling me into this thing we call ministry...