I’m a Lumberjack…

What would any sane person be doing when it is 14 degrees F outside on a late November evening? Why, marching through a snowy field looking for a Christmas tree!

I had thought about cutting a fresh tree down this year, as we had a nasty dry tree last year. Needles everywhere. After getting home today I heard that my friends were going to a place called “Chop N Shop”. No joke. They were wondering if we wanted them to pick us up a tree, as we don’t have a truck (almost a sin here in Idaho) and they often help us out with pick-up related duties.

Well, it’s hard to have someone else pick out a Christmas tree for you, so we bundled up the crew and followed them out to the country. A retired gentleman was raising trees on his property. He was a little surprised to see us at night. He figured it was kinda hard to see out there, but gave us sharp instruments, told us to watch for stumps, and to have fun.

We tromped around a little bit, checking out contenders. No one fell and got impaled, which I take as a successful night. Finally we settled on a 6′ spruce, and I did my best Monty Python imitation. The boys and Beccy skipped back to the van to be warm, while I laid on a blanket in this field in order to bring our Yuletide timber home.

It was a prosperous expedition, and I am ensconed at home all warmed up (though a mug of hot chocolate sounds nice.) The tree is in our front yard, as I’m too frazzled to set it up tonight. But I am confident we will have a nice fresh Christmas tree this year. Maybe I’ll post a pic when it is up and decorated.

…and I’m okay.

I’m a Lumberjack…

What would any sane person be doing when it is 14 degrees F outside on a late November evening? Why, marching through a snowy field looking for a Christmas tree!

I had thought about cutting a fresh tree down this year, as we had a nasty dry tree last year. Needles everywhere. After getting home today I heard that my friends were going to a place called “Chop N Shop”. No joke. They were wondering if we wanted them to pick us up a tree, as we don’t have a truck (almost a sin here in Idaho) and they often help us out with pick-up related duties.

Well, it’s hard to have someone else pick out a Christmas tree for you, so we bundled up the crew and followed them out to the country. A retired gentleman was raising trees on his property. He was a little surprised to see us at night. He figured it was kinda hard to see out there, but gave us sharp instruments, told us to watch for stumps, and to have fun.

We tromped around a little bit, checking out contenders. No one fell and got impaled, which I take as a successful night. Finally we settled on a 6′ spruce, and I did my best Monty Python imitation. The boys and Beccy skipped back to the van to be warm, while I laid on a blanket in this field in order to bring our Yuletide timber home.

It was a prosperous expedition, and I am ensconed at home all warmed up (though a mug of hot chocolate sounds nice.) The tree is in our front yard, as I’m too frazzled to set it up tonight. But I am confident we will have a nice fresh Christmas tree this year. Maybe I’ll post a pic when it is up and decorated.

…and I’m okay.

Armed for Battle

1 Chronicles 12:33
Men of Zebulun, experienced soldiers prepared for battle with every type of weapon, to help David with undivided loyalty – 50,000.

The context of the above verse is when men armed for battle came to David when he was at Hebron after Saul died, to turn the kingdom over to him.

When reading that in my quiet time recently, it struck me about the aspect of being prepared for battle with every type of weapon. In the Christian life, we have spiritual warfare in our lives. We need to know about this, and understand how to battle for the Lord in this aspect.

But I think Christians ought to aspire to be like the men of Zebulun. I was in a church once where the pastor disparaged using the mind. He felt that it got in the way of the Spirit, that we couldn’t be really used of God if we did anything with our minds.

I had a hard time with that then, and have become convinced since then that he was wrong to say that. Now I know how the Word says that our hearts our wicked and we can’t even know them ourselves. But He does give us minds to reason and to know Him. He is a God who reveals Himself so He can be known, at least to a degree.

I’m saying all this to ask, what weapons should we be able to fight with? I think that it can be summed up in one term: Biblical worldview. If we understand a Biblical worldview, how the Bible deals with life. From art to justice to helping the poor, we can understand Biblical principles to use as a framework for whatever we come up against in our culture. We shouldn’t live in a Christian cocoon, but understand the ideas that are being presented in our world and see how the Bible applies to them. No, the Bible doesn’t discuss every idea out there, but it does provide a framework to analyze any situation we can find ourselves in.

Warriors of worldview can go into any aspect of society: politics, academics, entertainment, literature, science, education. We can help shape the ideas of our times, which would be better than always reacting after the philosophies are out there.

If we can make the most of every opportunity and be prepared in season and out of season, we can stand and fight the battles in our world today. We know our battles are not against flesh and blood but against principalities and powers. This means we need to fight the spiritual battles in the heavenlies, but we also need to stand against the ideas that are counter to what God reveals in His word. We don’t fight the battle against the people, the proponents. But we speak with knowledge and with power, like Paul. Then we will be like the men of Zebulun, “prepared for battle with every type of weapon”.

Armed for Battle

1 Chronicles 12:33
Men of Zebulun, experienced soldiers prepared for battle with every type of weapon, to help David with undivided loyalty – 50,000.

The context of the above verse is when men armed for battle came to David when he was at Hebron after Saul died, to turn the kingdom over to him.

When reading that in my quiet time recently, it struck me about the aspect of being prepared for battle with every type of weapon. In the Christian life, we have spiritual warfare in our lives. We need to know about this, and understand how to battle for the Lord in this aspect.

But I think Christians ought to aspire to be like the men of Zebulun. I was in a church once where the pastor disparaged using the mind. He felt that it got in the way of the Spirit, that we couldn’t be really used of God if we did anything with our minds.

I had a hard time with that then, and have become convinced since then that he was wrong to say that. Now I know how the Word says that our hearts our wicked and we can’t even know them ourselves. But He does give us minds to reason and to know Him. He is a God who reveals Himself so He can be known, at least to a degree.

I’m saying all this to ask, what weapons should we be able to fight with? I think that it can be summed up in one term: Biblical worldview. If we understand a Biblical worldview, how the Bible deals with life. From art to justice to helping the poor, we can understand Biblical principles to use as a framework for whatever we come up against in our culture. We shouldn’t live in a Christian cocoon, but understand the ideas that are being presented in our world and see how the Bible applies to them. No, the Bible doesn’t discuss every idea out there, but it does provide a framework to analyze any situation we can find ourselves in.

Warriors of worldview can go into any aspect of society: politics, academics, entertainment, literature, science, education. We can help shape the ideas of our times, which would be better than always reacting after the philosophies are out there.

If we can make the most of every opportunity and be prepared in season and out of season, we can stand and fight the battles in our world today. We know our battles are not against flesh and blood but against principalities and powers. This means we need to fight the spiritual battles in the heavenlies, but we also need to stand against the ideas that are counter to what God reveals in His word. We don’t fight the battle against the people, the proponents. But we speak with knowledge and with power, like Paul. Then we will be like the men of Zebulun, “prepared for battle with every type of weapon”.

Blog Tour – Calm, Cool, and Adjusted



For this week’s blog tour, enter “Christian chick lit” in Google and one of the first names you’ll come up with is Kristin Billerbeck. She’s been highlighted on NBC’s Today show discussing the fad of “Bridget Jones going to church”.

Not that I’m afraid to tackle chick lit, but I was in the midst of a lot of reading already. I’ve pulled in a guest reviewer this week: my lovely wife! So, in her words:

Calm, Cool, and Adjusted is the third book in the Spa Girls series. I didn’t have the benefit of reading the first two, but I didn’t notice anything I missed out on by not reading them. It is focused on Poppy Clayton, a Christian chiropracter and health nut. Her office is next to a plastic surgeon, which cuts against everything she stands for. Her social life is going to change because the last of the Spa Girls is getting married. Is she going to be single and nutty, or will she accept that the perfect mate may not have the best alignment?

It was a quick read, light and fun. I laughed out loud at several points (Verified by her husband – J). The book was refreshing from the typical CBA romance novels I usually read. It had a good storyline. I enjoyed it a lot, but some of the characterization of the main character seemed a little overdone to further the plot. “

I read the first chapter, and found the writing engaging as well. I don’t think I’d have a problem sitting down and digging in to this when I had the chance. If chick lit is your thing, check out CCA.

Blog Tour – Calm, Cool, and Adjusted



For this week’s blog tour, enter “Christian chick lit” in Google and one of the first names you’ll come up with is Kristin Billerbeck. She’s been highlighted on NBC’s Today show discussing the fad of “Bridget Jones going to church”.

Not that I’m afraid to tackle chick lit, but I was in the midst of a lot of reading already. I’ve pulled in a guest reviewer this week: my lovely wife! So, in her words:

Calm, Cool, and Adjusted is the third book in the Spa Girls series. I didn’t have the benefit of reading the first two, but I didn’t notice anything I missed out on by not reading them. It is focused on Poppy Clayton, a Christian chiropracter and health nut. Her office is next to a plastic surgeon, which cuts against everything she stands for. Her social life is going to change because the last of the Spa Girls is getting married. Is she going to be single and nutty, or will she accept that the perfect mate may not have the best alignment?

It was a quick read, light and fun. I laughed out loud at several points (Verified by her husband – J). The book was refreshing from the typical CBA romance novels I usually read. It had a good storyline. I enjoyed it a lot, but some of the characterization of the main character seemed a little overdone to further the plot. “

I read the first chapter, and found the writing engaging as well. I don’t think I’d have a problem sitting down and digging in to this when I had the chance. If chick lit is your thing, check out CCA.

Cooking with the Joyners Part 2

As newlyweds, a couple is always nervous about cooking their first Thanksgiving dinner. Eight years ago my wife and I thought we were in the clear, going to her mother’s house for dinner. However, we received a bit of a surprise.

Beccy is a teacher, and had been hired to be the fill-in teacher for a local 5th grade, as the regular teacher had a medical leave for the year. Bec was playing catch-up with the traditions and way things were done. In mid-November she found out that the 5th grade teachers always did a Thanksgiving spread for the kids, and she was responsible for a turkey, mashed potatoes, and gravy.

Since people thought we might starve when we married (a reference to our perceived culinary prowess), this was a daunting task. Also, Beccy was swamped with other responsibilities since it was her first year.

So we read up on how to cook a turkey from Butterball.com and tried to get things going. She got the turkey in the oven, but it was in the afternoon. We had decided it would be too hard to try and do it in the morning of the feast, as we’d have to get up so early. The turkey was going to be a while – coming out of the oven around 11 pm or later.

Beccy had other things to do in the morning, so I sent her off to bed, while I stayed up for the turkey and gravy detail. I had carved the turkey for my mom before, but I had never done gravy. So I pour the juices into the pan and I’m stirring it. Boy, it just doesn’t seem like it wants to thicken at all. Better add some flour, right? I dump some in, not mindful of doing things a little at a time.

The gravy seizes up like cement.

Ack! What was I to do? It’s almost midnight, so I can’t call anyone. I thought it was going to be the worst gravy ever. I added some water and got it to the point where you didn’t need a knife to serve it, and put it away for the night.

I finish carving up the turkey after midnight, watching Star Trek: TNG on syndication (amazing the details you remember when you’re tired and frazzled). I didn’t realize Thanksgiving was so much work – and all we were doing was turkey, potatoes, and gravy.

Turns out the teachers raved about our gravy and potatoes, so that turned out alright. The kids weren’t too interested in turkey, so we had some leftovers. And we gained new appreciation for what our mothers went through on Thanksgiving!

Cooking with the Joyners Part 2

As newlyweds, a couple is always nervous about cooking their first Thanksgiving dinner. Eight years ago my wife and I thought we were in the clear, going to her mother’s house for dinner. However, we received a bit of a surprise.

Beccy is a teacher, and had been hired to be the fill-in teacher for a local 5th grade, as the regular teacher had a medical leave for the year. Bec was playing catch-up with the traditions and way things were done. In mid-November she found out that the 5th grade teachers always did a Thanksgiving spread for the kids, and she was responsible for a turkey, mashed potatoes, and gravy.

Since people thought we might starve when we married (a reference to our perceived culinary prowess), this was a daunting task. Also, Beccy was swamped with other responsibilities since it was her first year.

So we read up on how to cook a turkey from Butterball.com and tried to get things going. She got the turkey in the oven, but it was in the afternoon. We had decided it would be too hard to try and do it in the morning of the feast, as we’d have to get up so early. The turkey was going to be a while – coming out of the oven around 11 pm or later.

Beccy had other things to do in the morning, so I sent her off to bed, while I stayed up for the turkey and gravy detail. I had carved the turkey for my mom before, but I had never done gravy. So I pour the juices into the pan and I’m stirring it. Boy, it just doesn’t seem like it wants to thicken at all. Better add some flour, right? I dump some in, not mindful of doing things a little at a time.

The gravy seizes up like cement.

Ack! What was I to do? It’s almost midnight, so I can’t call anyone. I thought it was going to be the worst gravy ever. I added some water and got it to the point where you didn’t need a knife to serve it, and put it away for the night.

I finish carving up the turkey after midnight, watching Star Trek: TNG on syndication (amazing the details you remember when you’re tired and frazzled). I didn’t realize Thanksgiving was so much work – and all we were doing was turkey, potatoes, and gravy.

Turns out the teachers raved about our gravy and potatoes, so that turned out alright. The kids weren’t too interested in turkey, so we had some leftovers. And we gained new appreciation for what our mothers went through on Thanksgiving!