Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Hey Guys, You Should Start Blogging

So, now that you know my favorite bloggers...I thought I would include those who I would love to see enter the world of blogging. I assume their are way to many, so I thought I would add my top 5. So, here goes my "please would you start a blog list."

1. Brian Mclaren-Could you imagine. Hey, I would not blog if I was him. I would love to see his comments, ok maybe not.

2. Rob Bell-How cool would that be?

3. Erwin Mcmanus-Ok, so my top three are not very creative...But, C'mon, I would read their blogs dailey.

4. Tim Keller-WOW,WOW,WOW.

5. Leonard Sweet-Again, this would be a dailey read. This guy is so creative and intelligent.

I know this list could go on and on and on and on and on...But, off the top of my mind; these cats would be my top 5. I'm sure by tomorrow I could change my mind. This of course is a win-win proposition. Crap...I already forgot someone...So, now I'm going top 6.

6. Steve Jobs-I would love to hear Steve on a dailey basis. However, I doubt that will ever happen.

Oh, darn it...I'm going top 7.

7. Donald Miller-That would be great.

Hmm, ok ONE more I promise

8. Bono-Go ahead and complain, I can care less. I would read his blog dailey and so would you.


Good Stuff

Thoughts by Alan Hirsch who is the author of The Shaping of Things to Come, Via Bruce.

"Missional effectiveness is determined by: 1) Apostolic environments, 2) Disciplemaking and 3) Organic systems …

The West has complicated the church and made discipleship simple. China has a simplified the church and made discipleship complicated. Good disciples produce good leaders…

Church planting movements don’t move through hierarchies. Hierarchies stunt growth …there is more clutter to deal with. Control does not bring spontaneous expansion. Bottom up patterns create movements…

They (missional movements) look more like Al Qaeda than the Catholic Church. Such movements are like a swarm …a virus that can’t be taken out. They maximize survival by spread. They can only be eliminated by being attacked on an ideological level where the movement is glued together. They are networks of meaning…

We are people of the “story.” Not just people of the book. Complexity mucks it all up. Jesus movements are not complex. Pentecostal movements are not complicated. They focus on Jesus."

Monday, January 30, 2006

Best Bloggers

Bloglines is an RSS reader that tracks blogs...If you like to read a lot of blogs I would suggest you use bloglines. It also automatically updates itself when a new post is available. I currently track close to 80 blogs that range from ministry, personal productivity, real estate and much more. Must of them are ok, but their are a few that are great, these blogs go above and beyond...Sometimes I hate reading them because they make me think and ponder and I do enough of that without the help of blogs. So, I'm going to list my must read blogs. I hope you enjoy them.

In no particular order:

Jason Clark hails from the UK. He is a pastor and also helps lead Emergent International. Jason always has good thoughts and brings an intellectual balance to the blog world.

Andrew Jones also hails from the UK. He was a blog pioneer and has a lot to say about media, church planting, and culture.

Steven is a friend and missionary in S. Africa. He has a lot to say about the state of Africa, Poverty and Justice. I hope to make it out to S. Africa someday soon and hang out.

Dave Ferguson is a pastor is Illinois and a leader in the multi-site movement. Almost every post has great content. I think I should print his material out and save it somehow. He just started blogging in the last few months. Good stuff.

Mark Batterson is a pastor in DC. He is by far my favorite blogger. I used his material a lot when preaching. (Thanks Mark) His church seems amazing and his writing skills are great. Keep up with this guy.

Guy Kawasaki is a Mac evangelist, Author, Public Speaker and his blog is AMAZING. So much content. He also just started blogging in the past month. Guy tends to supersede any label...If your a student, pastor or business person, Guy's blog will be beneficial to you.

Marko is the leader of YS. Plus, if you are known to the world by just one name, you are automatically cooler them most. Marko's blog is witty, fun and also has a lot of interesting stuff to say.

That is my must read list...Although, my one frustration is the fact that these are all men, were are the women bloggers?

The blog world has really been so beneficial, it's great that I get a chance through the virtual world to get to know and learn from these great leaders.

Who are your favorite bloggers. Let us know.

Brian Responds To His Critics

Brian Mclaren responds to the criticism he received: Brian McLaren on the Homosexual Question 4: McLaren's Response

I find it funny that folks are still upset that Mclaren has not brought clarity to his personal views on homosexuality. Because he is a leader, apparently folks think he is obligated to clarify his stance. Why are people so obsessed with having to have all the answers...?Can they not see the Brian is struggling to understand and define these issues? Is it not ok to allow someone to have space and time...?Does Emergent have a responsibility to clarify their stance on this issues? If so, then do we have to clarify "all" issues that we are struggling through? Also, since when did it become ok to "slam" your brothers or sisters in Christ? I think Mark Driscoll should make a public apology to Brian, Doug and Emergent. Not for the content, but for the fact that he elevated himself above others, and the fact that his attitude was in no way one that reflected Christ, or a leader. Also, what about Acts 29. Are they upset about Driscoll's comments? Do they feel like Driscoll responded in a way that reflects the culture and attitude of Acts29? On a personal level, I think Acts 29 & Emergent both have huge roll to fulfill in our culture...I love and respect both ministries...Yes, I also disagree on certain theological issues that they both hold. But, I'm ok with that. I think the tension between the two can be good for the church, if we have a good attitude in the meantime.

Sunday, January 29, 2006


Just A Thought

I concur with this quote...

"Thinking is easy, acting is difficult, and to put one's thoughts into action is the most difficult thing in the world."


Saturday, January 28, 2006

It was a good day

So this afternoon we decided to head to North Hills to catch Narnia. Not really sure what I think about this flick...I have mixed reactions for sure. It seems to me that the acting was sub-par and they sure did jump around a lot. But, I still enjoyed the movie. After that we headed home, but on the way we decided to stop by Total Wine and I pick up a Partagus Black Lable cigar...Hmm, yummy. Then, I found out that we are hanging with Ken & Brenda tomorrow at WINGSTOP...SO SWEET. I think I may go to bed now, so nothing else can go wrong to ruin my day.

The Stream of Consciousness

The Stream of Consciousness is for the most part how I blog. I rarely if ever write something and sit on it. I just start typing and allow a certain flow to take over. I'm hoping in the future to change this habit. Now I'm usually thinking about my posts all the time, for instance...The issues with identity has been swirling in my mind for the last few months. Also, I never take more then 10 minutes to write any one blog post...Unfortunately, It takes me longer to do a spell check and to process my horrible grammar then it does to actually write my thoughts...Another words, I'm not the best writer around (as if you haven't noticed). Not sure why I'm saying this, but I thought I would give you the 411 and what not. My desire for this blog is to authentic and raw. Kinda like a snapshot into my mind. (which is so freaking twisted) I want to thank those who keep up with my life and this blog...Somehow or some way I hope to say something that will encourage someone in their life journey.

Influence is a key motivating word in my life. I pray dailey that God would help me influence those around me. This is why I feel no matter what I'm doing, like selling homes or preaching, I feel like I can help draw folks closer to God. For instance, Necole and I have received multiple comments from our clients.

Like my out of state client who is moving from Florida to Raleigh, She told me she was looking for a real estate agent for months...Within the first 5 minutes of speaking with me she was peaceful and she knew we would help take care of her needs.

Another client, who is a first time home buyer said he was relieved that he found us and he knew that he could trust us.

Our greatest desire in real estate in not the commission check, it's being able to spends months with clients and in that time, for them to see the love of God in out lives.

When I was in corporate sales, the majority of my clients said the exact same thing. I was able to build a culture of trust. Sales environments are harsh. But, Christ is counter-cultural, so I knew in order to be successful in sales, (In God's eyes not man's) I had to be counter-cultural in my approach. Another words, how can I influence people, how can I show the love and character of God. How is it that God wants to use me to transform the culture around me.

So, on a dailey basis, I pray for influence. I'm always seeking the "God way" of doing things...I do not want to conform to the ways of the world. Their is always a better way, and to me that's God's way. This is why I blog. I know their are other church planters who's dreams were crushed, and I also know that no matter why the church failed, they are having to deal with that reality and for the most part they are alone and searching for a conversation that will encourage them and provide hope to move forward in God's love and grace.

Also, I had a series of post that I was going to roll out this week...BUT, somehow I lost them in my blogger engine. Hmm, maybe that was God will? I think these post would have been a little controversial for sure. So, I hope to rewrite them soon and maybe add some more thoughts. For the most part, I will share my Sacred story, the good, the bad and the ugly. I would even love to write a book about it someday...I would imagine the title would be called something like "failing with grace," or "how my church plant failed." We have way to many books about how churches succeeded, but I would be interested to hear the stories of those who failed. Not sure how popular this would be with the Christian consumer machine...But, I know it would help future church planters see the "real" world of church planting. Maybe I could help them avoid some of the mistakes that I made...And maybe, somehow I could help influence other's, so the Kingdom of God and become a reality. After all, is that not the goal?

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Driscoll vs. Mclaren

This is so sad, not sure what Driscoll was thinking. Now, I tend to agree that Emergent side steps some huge issues...BUT, why would you slam and ridicule someone on a blog? Driscoll seems to discredit himself by his own attitude.

Prayer Request

So, I need some love in Seattle. I'm looking for a place to stay for like 6 weeks this April & May. Does anyone know of any unique co-op's or someone who would let me rent their room or crash and their couch? If so let me know.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Hanging with the boys

Hung out with Jeff & J at Borders today. We had some great conversation about life, God and church planting...I'm going to miss these guys and I hope they continue to do great things for God via Hungry.

I think its important to connect with various folks, this is so important to the growth of a person and a community. We discussed how Raleigh seems to be a closed system in regards to pastors connecting with one another. Either we are to busy, or to scared to connect with others whom we have differences with but at the end of the day we all want the same thing, which is to show the love of God to our respected communities.

Looking forward...I can say I have been able to connect with three of four pastors from Seattle...They seem real cool, open and willing to connect when I move there, so that brings lots of hope for future relationships. And that is a relief.

Identity Part II

So, to further my thoughts on identity let me say this. Success or failure should not determine ones identity. Joseph is a great example. He could have easily (or maybe he did) feel like a failure. I'm sure nobody would have asked him to speak or write a book, I'm sure his blog hits would have been low to none. But, in the midst of all this, he somehow was able to be faithful. I'm sure he had no clue that one day he would be exalted to the 2nd highest government position in the kingdom. But, what about folks like TD Jakes or Erwin Mcmanus, who both pastored small churches for YEARS while no one noticed. They were faithful to the call of God, just like Jospeh. So, it seems like God has elevated them to have a new platform, and more influence. But, here lies the problem, everyone tends to want to be the next TD Jakes, or Erwin Mcmanus. Sometimes I've fallen into this trap. The leader in me says if I do the right things, then I know I can build a church. For instance...If I hire the right staff, have a good marketing plan, create the right ambiance and have a terrific "wow" experience then the church will grow. So, my identity becomes so wrapped up in trying to learn how to MANufacture a move of God. I should have spent more time seeking God, reading the Bible more then the latest "leadership" book and being faithful to the small things. Now, I'm not saying that leadership books are bad, or a good plan is futile (in fact I think they are essential)...What I am saying is this, maybe we spend way to much time trying to figure out how to create a movement instead of seeking the ONE who will create the movement anyhow? Therefore, our identity gets so wrapped up into creating this movement/church that we really lose focus on our priorities. And if things don't work out the leader is left crushed and wounded...Is that God's will? Sure I'm disappointed that Sacred did not work out...And yes I do know their were some fatal flaws in our structure and culture...But, I'm not going to allow that to crush me, or I'm not going to lose confidence in myself; my identity is not wrapped up into a church or the success of the church, my identity is in Christ. And that is a good thing. Why do I blog about all this? Because I have fellow pastors who email me to ask questions, like how we closed the church down, when did you know it was time and how did you deal with the stress along the way? And, on top of that pressure, these pastors have to look for a new source of income, (trust me, nobody will help once the church in closed, you are on your own at this point) they may even have to find a new community and they could also be shunned by their leaders or denominations because they did not do what was hoped for, resources were lost and certain numbers were not achieved . Not to mention that their family can be in total disarray or other staff members are left to question and ponder their future. OK, enough for now...But, I may do part three tomorrow. Peace & Love. And no matter if you succeeded or failed, you are still loved by God.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Tony Compolo Quotes

Interesting quotes by Tony Compolo via Dave Ferguson

"'What should you buy for someone who has everything? Nothing! But we just came through Christmas, and you didn't have the guts to pull it off, did you?'

'Your Presbyterian denomination is dying - losing its young people - not because we've made Christianity too hard for them, but because we've made it too easy.'

'Youth was made for heroism, not pleasure,...Jesus calls people to die to self'

'When did Christianity cease being dangerous? That's when it ceased being Christianity.'"


While reading Rob Bell's book "Velvet Elvis" and now I'm reading Louie's book "I am not but I know I AM," has really brought a certain level of healing to my soul. So many times my identity is wrapped up into a success or fail box. For the most part, once a church plant "fails," it's easy for the pastors/staff to lose identity. You feel a certain level of abandonment and lose. How do you deal with that? Of course, all the blame falls on Lead Pastor (which is part of the territory and I'm fine with that, although most of this philosophy comes from a corporate view of the church) I have yet to hear anyone else like my denom or local leadership take any responsibility, basically the whole blame was placed on me being a poor leader. Not sure why, but it's reality. Anyhow, before I go off on a rant and become misunderstood which is not the point of this conversation. Being a church planter, I recognize that I made many mistakes...So, now I'm trying to deal with those mistakes in a way that will glorify God and help me become a better leader and find a way to help others who failed also. But, I also think the American Church has to look itself in the mirror and ask some serious questions.

Like....Identity. Rob Bell tells the story of how he was tired of being "super pastor," I'm sure you have met super pastor before...He is the guy or gal that has all the answers to all of life's questions...They can do anything, solve any problems...I had a friend in California. He was the big super youth pastor type of guy, he was at the big church, with lots of resources and multiple staff members...On the outside, he had it going on. He was SUCCESSFUL. But, his personality got in the way, another words he steamrolled folks in the name of God. You know this guy, he does not care who he hurts as long as the youth group is growing and kids are "saved." I had a great conversation with him one day...He was tired. He hated this reputation that was his reality. He understood that doing something great for God does not always mean having a big church or large youth group. His whole identity was attached to his youth ministry...And not to his God. He become lost in being successful. Sometimes failure is apart of God's will right? Louie talks about how God is the "I AM," and we are "NOT" the "I AM." Another words, we tend to walk a dangerous line of assuming a successful church, or youth group, or whatever is God will all the time. The danger of this is what happens when something becomes a failure? My youth pastor friend had to be replaced because he destroyed so many folks on the way to his so called success. He became bigger then the ministry. So this poses a question. What is success? Is success numbers...? Is it more important then say attitude, Or the way you treat people? Is it better for me lead a mega church, or is it better for me to treat EVERYONE with honor, love and respect? When I make a mistake I humble myself and say sorry. When someone offends me I automatically forgive them, no matter the circumstances. I think this goes for everyone, successful business owners, musicans, authors etc...

Hmm, more questions then answers for sure. Now, I know that I have personally steamrolled many folks in the past. So, yes I'm guilty just like my youth pastor friend....The point...Is....Not to point fingers at any individual,or style of ministry, because I know for sure that I would have three fingers pointing back at me. But, I think we need to try define "success" not in terms of numbers, or organizational success, but in attitude and how we walk with God no matter what the circumstances. Just because you have a growing church, does not mean you are making an impact for God...The Kingdom og God is much BIGGER then numbers. But, we do need growing churches for sure. But, I guess there is a right way to grow a church and a wrong way to grow a church. (I had a friend who came in from out of town for a wedding...he went back to his home church were he used to attend and he said it felt like home...To me, that is what a growing church should look like, a place were you leave and come back to again and you still feel loved and have a sense of community.) Think about it, the Bible tells us to love our enemies, but sometimes we have a hard enough time loving our family, friends or co-workers. Us pastors have a hard time getting along with each other...And we are suppose to love our enemies??? I was told by someone recently that he would no longer talk to me. My first reaction was...WOW, I would never in a million years say that to anybody...Could you imagine Jesus saying hey, I'm mad at you and I will no longer talk to you anymore...No way. Sometimes we get so caught up in the moment..We forget that we are all part of a bigger story. Another words, I can have a great church, but if I fail to treat folks in the way of Christ, does that make me a success or failure? I will try to add more thoughts to this latter.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Seattle Center - What A Great Place!

Man I wish I was in Seattle for this.

I had no clue we had a top 50 list

The Church Report - The 50 Most Influential Christians in America just came out today. My first thought is this, I wonder if God would have a different 50? All these folks are the big time guys and gals...I have a feeling that their are a lot of nobodies in our eyes, people like the inner city pastors or the rural preachers...Anyhow, I know that is besides the point...I was surprised to see Leonard Sweet ahead of Brian Mclaren...Not that I have a preference or anything. Jack Hayford is on the list...He is the President of my denom (or maybe its not my denom, I'm not for sure if I have been booted or not). Rob Bell & Erwin Mcmanus also made the cut. I do have a sneaky suspicion that for some reason this top fifty list thing seems so wrong. Anyone else have any thoughts on this? Also, I was a little distressed that I did not make it. Darn!!!

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Kobe Is Sick

So, I was I was off to bed when I heard Kobe scored 60 by the end of the third quarter...No doubt, I had to power up the iBook and follow the game. So far Kobe has 74 and he is shooting over 50%. Sick, that is so sick.

Update: Kobe finished with 81. Second highest EVER to Wilt's 100. WOW!

Update 2: Kobe shot 62%. He scored 55 in the second half. The Lakers were down 17 in the 3rd and the won by like 10. Crazy, many Kobe haters are saying this game is even more impressive them Wilt's 100...Jordon himself only got to 69 and that was an overtime game. He cliamed a it's to hard to be a guard and score more then 70.

Lame Sooooooooooo Lame

NBC Cancels 'West Wing' After 7 Seasons - Yahoo! News

Trying to find our fit.

It seems like Necole and I just went through this...What is this you ask...? Moving, looking for schools for the kids, trying to figure out if we want to live in the "burbs" or the city. This process is mentally tough and exhausting. At times Necole and I do not feel like we fit in anywhere...We do not desire to do the mini van, take your kids to soccer, and live far from the city crap. We also do not want to be the only family with kids in some single or newly married "uptown" neighborhood. So, we are hoping that we can live in a neighborhood were the two worlds collide. Living in Seattle, we know we can make this happen because Seattle has so many multi-mixed neighborhoods. So this gives us hope. Of course, there is a price to pay...Housing is nuts. For a 2 bed 1 bath home, the price tag can be $400,000-$500,000. That is not a typo. Now, the good thing is our income will be going up being that we are in real estate and all. So, back to researching and praying and hoping that this will all work out.

Also, who do I root for today...Seattle or Carolina? Go Seattle!

Saturday, January 21, 2006

My Date With Drew

My Date With Drew - 30 days - $1,100 - 1 date is a documentary and it's very funny. I love the desire, passion and creativity. I actually got it by accident (trust me I would have never picked this up otherwise, I'm too serious) and it was well worth it. Rent it and enjoy!

Friday, January 20, 2006

Do You Want More Sex

I've decided to get rid of the TV in our bedroom and here is why.

Pet Peeves

Hanging at a cafe this morning as I wait to take a client out this afternoon. I got some time on my hands because I skipped out on a training class. Anyhow, I thought I would post some of my pet peeves in life. Do you have any? If so let us know.

1. Feet: Hate them.
2. Cubicles: Cubes are bad for your health. I'm so happy for laptops and wifi.
3. Fundamentalists: I have fundamental beliefs, but fundies drive me nuts. Especially when all their info comes from other fundies. Now, fundies can come from the left or the right. So don't judge!!!
4. Superstar ministers: ya know them, they have all the answers to everything. I've recently been told that if I had followed one man's advice, I would have been a successful church planter. (Scary)
5. Folks that can't make decisions.
6. Modders, de-rankers and superjumpers. (If you don't know what this means, don't worry about it, your better off in the end)
7. Carolina winters that are more like spring. Yes, it's 70 here in Raleigh. Crazy!
8. I hate the fact that Wahba lives in Phoenix, Ashdown lives in Houston and Gore is here in Raleigh, while I will be in Seattle. I think we all need to move to Seattle (They all love music so that is my hook) and do something great for God.
9. Folks that act busy all the time...Success and busyness is part of their identity. I do not want that to be apart of mine.
10. Thirsty traveler, because I want his job, travel the world and drink beer with lots of folks. How cool is that.

Ok, I think that is enough for now.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Velvet Elvis

I FINALLY finished Velvet Elvis...I liked the book alot...It's not intellectual, but it's packed with lots of really good information. BTW, why all the controversy? Anyhow, I thought I would add some quotes that caused me to think:

"If the gospel isn't good news for everybody, then it isn't good news for anybody

And this is because the most powerful things happen when the church surrenders its desire to convert people and convince them to join. It is when the church gives itself away in radical acts of service and compassion, expecting nothing in return, that the way of Jesus is most vividly on display."

"The way of Jesus is a journey, not a destination. On a journey, the scenery changes. A lot. We can prepare for some things but not all. We make mistakes, figure it out as we go along and try new things. Failures are really just opportunities to learn."

"I am learning that the church is at its best when it is underground, subversive, and counter cultural. It is the quiet, humble, stealth acts that change things."

"Most of the messages we receive are about making life easier. The call of Jesus goes the other direction: It's about making lives more difficult. It's going out of the way to be more generous and disciplined and loving and free."

I'm It

Mark has tagged me all the way from Budapest. "The rules: Write about five guilty pleasures. In the end, you need to choose someone else to be tagged."

1. Smoking a Cuban Cigar in downtown Seattle.
2. With a pint of Fat Tire.
3. With all my friends who flew in from all over the world.
4. And we would podcast the entire conversations.
5. The conversation would be about the Kingdom of God and how we desire to see our lives transformed by Christ and bring heaven to earth and healing to our respective cultures. And this would take place on Sunday morning and we would consider this Church. :)

I'm going to Tag Ashdown & Nussbaum.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Is it hype or is it for real

Everyone I know raves about Lost. Now, I have never watched an episode...So, I'm thinking about getting the 1st season on DVD...Is it worth it? Let me know your .02.

Tuning Mac OS X Performance

Tuning Mac OS X Performance. Nice article for Mac lovers, and if you don't love the Mac, then well well well, let's just leave that alone. I'm so glad I met Jasen Ashdown, he turned me on to the Mac. (BTW, Ashdown needs to start blogging more, I mean, those new married folks always say they are to busy to do the things they did before they were married...Hmm, I wonder...Ok, let's not go there, Amanda will shoot me.) Anyhow, enjoy the article and yes, leave the PC behind and join the thousands that have been saved by Mac!!!

Stuck In a Rut

I hate feeling like I'm stuck in a rut...The last few weeks have been so complicated, my life has changed so quickly. So, I'm now at a cafe doing some prayer blogging. Let me offer some quick backstory to my thoughts. I'm stuck in this huge spiritual rut, maybe you have been there? You desire to pray, but you don't, you want to pick up the Bible but instead you reach for the TV controller. Well, that has been the past few weeks for me, now I HATE the thought of being lazy, but in all honeslty I think I'm just a little overwhelmed with so many new emotions. I'm trying to stay focused on the present, but my mind constantly wants to run forward and grasp the future. It's funny how time seems to stand still when you want it to move forward, of course when you want time to stand still (weekends for instance) it's seems to go so quickly. In my mind, I see images of Seattle, I see myself with new friends at the local cafe having great conversations...Now, these friends are faceless, but finding friends is the least of my fears, that comes natural to me...The problem is the present, ya know...I get that phone call from some client who needs to see a home...Oh ya, I still have to live in the present...Because the present is as important as the future. I want the present to be healthy, I want to connect with God, love my family and spend time with friends who I love and care for. But, the rut thing comes back to haunt me. I kinda of feel like I'm in Narnia, I'm in the unique phase in life. I know I'm leaving my current location, but I can't go yet, so I have to get out of this rut, and embrace the moment and take advantage of every God opportunity that comes my way; because the present will come soon enough and maybe, just maybe I will will be thinking about my past? I kinda hear a U2 song in my head at this moment. Peace & Love.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Fan had heart attack seconds after Bettis fumble

Wow, I thought I was a sports nut!

Loud Cell Phone Guy Sucks

So, I'm in this lame cafe in N. Raleigh. I had some errands to do, so I thought I would hang here today instead of my normal spots. So, this guy is setting on the OTHER side of the cafe, and he is LOUD...Very LOUD, I really just want to HIT him, but that would not be a good thing. I have Ben Folds blasting in my ear, and I can still here his conversation. So MAD...Then guy number two comes in with his lady friend and they are LOUD...They are having a conversation about work and doing business, which is cool. BUT, why are folks so loud? Do they not respect public spaces? Are they insecure so they have to feel "important?" I dunno, it's just lame lame lame. Oh, BTW...I really wish I had loud guy number one's bluetooth ear piece...But, I promise I will not be the loud cell phone guy. And if I am, can you please hit me?

Monday, January 16, 2006

New Blogger Alert

Amanda, who is a self-proclaimed liberal Christian (YES) and a close friend has started a new blog. So check her out...I'm hoping she jumps into some theological issues, but I guess we will have to wait and see.

Dr. King

Adam has some interesting thoughts on MLK. I'm getting ready to read The Barbarian Way by Erwin Mcmanus. The "big idea" of the book is Christianity is not supposed to be this safe religion, that was not the life that Jesus lived or called his disciples to live. I also noticed google's logo in honor of Dr. King. Well, one thing is for sure, Dr. King did not live a safe Christian life, and he paid the ultimate price. I was reflecting on his life earlier and I was wondering if he knew he was going to die, and leave his wife and kids, would he still live the life that he lived...?One of the biggest reason that I feel like I lack faith and that I don't always necessarily live a "bolder" Christian life is because I want to keep my kids safe and secure and I do not want to ruin or disrupt our little American dream. And sometimes I wonder if that is not the mantra of the typical American evangelical?

The Wild West

I thought I would post some pictures of Seattle...Enjoy!

Mt. Rainier

Snoqualmie Falls

Seattle Skyline

Seattle Skyline

Seattle Skyline

Seattle Skyline

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Answered Prayer

Yesterday we took out our client who are from the UK. They are so nice and it's been a pleasure to work with them. The good news is that we found a house that they wanted. So we wrote up an offer and submitted it to the listing agent. However, the owner off the home relocated to the Middle East...So, we had no clue when we would hear back and get the yes or no. But, this morning we got the call that the contract was accepted...And we are closing in February. So that was a HUGE answer to prayer, this was by far our largest transaction to date . Now, hopefully we have a smooth closing process.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Pakistan protests U.S. missile strike - International Terrorism - MSNBC.com

This story makes me sad: Pakistan protests U.S. missile strike-How can we (America) think it's ok to kill woman and children; we commit murder in order to kill a murderer. I hope the rest of the world understands that America cares for those who lost their lives.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Google Earth Rocks

Google Earth is great...I was able to look at some properties in Seattle today and I got some (I can't use the word amazing because Wahba will harraas me) views. Also, I hate cubicles, yuck...They suck and mean I really really really hate cubicles, thank God for laptops and wireless internet. Okay off to sell some real estate. Peace & love.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Why I will miss Raleigh

1. The People, it's going to be hard to say goodbye to a lot of cool people that I will love and respect forever.

2. Thunderstorms. I love them and I will miss them.

3. Cost of living...Housing is soooooo cheap here.

4. Traffic...It's funny to hear the locals get upset about the traffic. They have no clue how lucky they are.

5. NC beach...Warm, not crowded and very sandy. West Coast beaches are amazing to look at; but NC beaches are amazing to swim in.

6. JR's Cigar.

7. Southern hospitality

8. Sweet tea...Ok, NOOOOOT!

9. College football & basketball. In my opinion, the south has the best overall college sports vibe in America.

I think that is it for now...Peace & Love.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Things I Like about Seattle

I thought I would add some more thoughts on our move to Seattle.

Reasons I'm looking forward to moving to Seattle:

1. Big City...I love Raleigh, but over the past few years I would tell Necole that I felt closterphobic...It's a little too small for me. I was eating lunch with Ryan Van Sickle today, he told me that I could go to a different cafe each day; and by the end of the year, I would still have new cafe's to explore in Seattle. So, I can't wait to be back in a big city...To hear the sounds, see the sights and explore the culture. Fun Fun Fun.

2. Outdoors...In Seattle, you can be at the beach, or in the mountains in less then an hour...Major mountains, hiking trials, kayaking, Islands off the Pudget Sound and all kinds off outdoor stuff. Also, the water is deep blue...It's really beautiful...On a clear day, I think and have said that Seattle is the best city in America. (The problem of course, is the sun tends always want to hide behind those wicked dark gray clounds)

3. It's not conservative...I'm looking forward to having some great conversations about God, life and spirituality. Typically, when I have some "theological" conversation here in the Triangle I get this black & white "I've got God figured out" and "I know my stuff so let's not try to rethink anything," nonsense. Ok, let's stop the rant before it begins.

4. No humidity...Nuff said!

5. Close to Cali and family & friends.

6. Pro sporting events...Football, Basketball & YES baseball. I love going to professional baseball games.

7. It's rarely hot...Summers are long and cool.

Reasons I'm not looking forward to Seattle:

1. Rain & Overcast skies. YUCK YUCK YUCK

2. Cost of living is HIGH. Ave home in Seattle is close to $400,000.

3. Traffic

4. Miss my Raleigh friends.

Tomorrow, I will post on the things that I will miss about Raleigh. Peace & Love

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Apple is amazing

Update: This sucker will also run windows, yikes, I may sell the family mini-van (any buyers, the Marlow family can take the bus) so I can get my dirty little hands on this nice, soft and exotic machine.

MacBook Pro looks so cool...It's smaller, faster and lighter then the previous G4 Powerbook...BUT, you will have to pay top dollar; however, I think I know what my next laptop purchase will be!

I need help

Well, we are still putting together are plans for the big move...However, in the meantime I could sure use your help. I'm getting ready to purchase a domain name for our real estate business in Seattle. If possible, could you leave a comment or email me to let me know which domain name you like the best, here are the options:





Thanks for the help.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Some books on the way

Well, my Amazon addiction is still kicking...I just ordered the following books:

1. Through Painted Deserts : Light, God, and Beauty on the Open Road. I love Don Miller's approach to spirituality. I met him briefly in Chapel Hill, he seemed so cool and down to earth, yet he has done some amazing things for the Kingdom of God. I love how he writes, and he really helps me connect with God and piece together some of my "outside the box" thinking.

2. I Am Not But I Know I AM: Welcome to the Story of God: Books. Honeslty, I feel like I've failed at everything I've done in my life...Not sure why, but it is what it is, yet I know God has purpose for all the failure. On the other hand, Louie Giglio seems to succeed at everything he touches...Wahba recommended this book, so I know it will be a good read.

3. The Barbarian Way : Unleash the Untamed Faith Within. Erwin always challenges me to live a life of faith and uncertainty. I know Erwin is now a famous pastor, speaker, communicator, author etc...But I also know that Erwin served in a small inner city Dallas church for close to 10 years.

As of now, it looks like I will be leaving for Seattle around April 1st. So, I really want to focus for the next four months on my spiritual life, making sure that I connect with God and that my walk with Him is strong...I think these books will enhance my thinking and challenge my life. If you have read any of these books, let me know your thoughts...Peace & love!

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Dreams of Education

I've had a few folks ask me about the seminaries that I would like to attend in Seattle. My first choice is

Mars Hill Graduate School. My buddy Tim Condor along with Brian Mclaren are on the board of Mars Hill. My next choice is George Fox University, >Leonard Sweet teaches at this school. So, my education journey would look something like this:

1. Finish Undergrad at George Fox. Get M. Div from Mars Hill and then get my doctorate from George Fox. Now, I'm not sure if this will all work out or not, or if I will even pursue my doctorate. I would love to teach when I'm older, but I have a ton of work to do before I would even consider becoming a prof. We shall see. The more I plan, the more I realize that my plans are not His plans, so I'm trying to process all this change and make good decisions along the way!

Friday, January 06, 2006

More info on Seattle

Ken & Brenda just dropped the news that they are heading back to Seattle also...Any yes, Tre is also going, his mother and brother live in Seattle. It's hard to explain how this all happened so quickly, last week I was encouraging Ken to move to Seattle, I know He and Brenda missed their family, so I'm very happy for them to he heading home. Anyhow, life can change so quickly, it's crazy!

Seattle Here We Come???

Well, as many if you know, Necole and I have been through some difficult times as of late...Not getting our home and finding out that Necole's parents have decided to move to Oregon has caused Necole and I to really rethink and pray about our future here in Raleigh. So, here comes the big announcement, for the most part, we've decided to relocate to Seattle WA. Maybe the first question you have is "Why Seattle?" Well, their are multiple reasons why...But the biggest reason is simple, and that is family. We will be a half day drive from Necole's parents...We think it's very important for our kids to be close to their family. 2. Seattle has my top 2 choices in Seminaries...So, I'm hoping to wrap up my education in the next few years. 3. I miss the big city. I love Raleigh, but I miss the big city feel. Now, all that said, we realize this creates many more challenges, we know the grass is not "greener" on the other side. I hope to add to my thoughts in the coming days, in the meantime if you could pray for us we would appreciate that. Peace and love!!!

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Evotional.com - Originality, Authenticity, Creativity

Good thoughts from Mark Batterson's lastest evotional.

"On the morning of his fifty-first birthday, Jackson Brown decided to jot down some lessons that more than a half century of living had taught him. When he told his friends about the project, they wanted to jump on the bandwagon. The final product, Live and Learn and Pass It On, is a compilation of lessons people ages 5 to 95 have learned about successful living. Here are a few of my favorites:

I’ve learned that you cannot hide a piece of broccoli in a glass of milk—age 6

I’ve learned that it’s easier to stay out of trouble than get out of trouble—age 14

I’ve learned that if you’re life is free of failures you aren’t taking enough risks—age 42

I’ve learned that I shouldn’t go grocery shopping on a empty stomach—age 38

I’ve learned that the dashing young knight on his snow white horse who was going to ride into my life and sweep off my feet has gotten lost in the forest—age 46

I’ve learned that your ACT doesn’t determine the rest of your life— age 18

I’ve learned that if you want to get even with someone at camp, rub their underwear in poison ivy—age 11

I’ve learned that if you keep doing what you’ve always done you’ll keep getting what you’ve always gotten—age 51 "

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

The Big Game

I was close, 41-38 Texas...What a game!!!!

I lived in Dallas for close to 4 years...While I was there, I became a quasi Texas Longhornes fan...My buddy Kevin Williams brother played for Texas and was later drafted 4th overall to the Buffalo Bills. Now, being a Texas fan was a painful experience to say the least; Texas could never beat Oklahoma...But, that has changed and now in just a few minutes they will be playing for the championship. So, I'm definitely rooting for them tonight, although I would not put cash on them either. So, my prediction for tonight's game: Texas 38 USC 34.

Not a good day

Well, today was suppose to be the big day, we were going to move into our new town home...HOWEVER, yesterday Necole and I went to check out the place one last time, we noticed a big bubble in the flooring that stretched across the whole living room...So, we did not sign the contract for the house. After multiple phone calls, the flooring company tried to repair the damage to no avail; so now they have to replace the whole floor and we have no clue when that will be done. So we are going to try and get out of the contract at this point. However, the day gets worse...We found out that Necole's family (mom, Step-dad, & sister) will be moving out of state; this is devastating to the way in which we've build our lives here in Raleigh. So, the punches keep coming, but I guess we will have to "roll" with them, what else can you do? I can say that I envy folks who have a stable family, you know the type, mom and dad are together, living in the same home and or city that they raised the family in yada yada yada... but that is not our reality! So, now Necole and I are really searching for our purpose...We kinda have a clean slate with no strings attached. So, over the next few days, we will will be praying for God to give us direction. Shall we stay here in Raleigh, is God going to move us to another place? We have no clue. But I'm sure God does, so now I just need to talk to him!

Monday, January 02, 2006

Quick thought on church & money

Steven, who is serving the Lord is S. Africa posted some great thoughts on his blog. As I look forward to what God has for me via the church world, I've been thinking how can we make a difference, without spending so much cash on staff, building, and programs...I think the average church of 1000 spends more the 75% of their budget on building and staffing. Anyhow, below is a quick glimpse; go to Steven's blog for more info:

What did it cost to start these 100,000 churches? Churches with no building or parking lot, no paid pastor or youth leader, no overhead projector? Totaling the costs for all the travel required, seminars, training, research projects, equipping of the few key people and multipliers, plus emergency welfare assistance, we arrive at no more than US$30 million per year, or around US$300 million over the past decade. In comparison: traditional Christianity, with its countless programmes, mountains of paper, training, permanent evangelistic events, church buildings and maintenance costs, salaries of church employees and budgets for welfare and mission, cost an incredible US$286 billion per year, according to Dr. David Barrett, or US$2,860 billion over the decade. US$300 million is one ten thousandth of that sum! What would happen if Christians changed their giving habits over the next ten years, so that instead of 0.01%, 10% of Christian finances were invested in strategic multiplicative church planting movements? It would lead to a missionary explosion of incredible proportions.


Utazni is a new blog from Mark & Laura Newell. Mark & Laura just moved to Budapest, Hungary. They have a tremendous passion for God & people. So far, the blog is looking really good and informative; I'm excited to be able to keep up with their journey, check them out and enjoy!

Sunday, January 01, 2006

What do you think?

"The greatest enemy to the movement of Jesus Christ is Christianity."
Erwin McManus


Well, 2006 is finally upon, how crazy is that. The last few days have been tiring, so last night Necole and I went to bed at 10:30PM, yes...You read that right. We had a great time at Wes & Diana's wedding, it was great to see so many cultures coming g together to celebrate God's union. Now, I'm off to Vintage 21, and the rest of the day shall be filled with packing, and hanging out with folks that are still in town visiting. Peace and love in 2006!!!