Friday, August 20, 2010

I'm a...Well I Work as a...Um...I'm a Missionary

I am  a missionary, a proud missionary, BUT there are times when it sucks to say it.

Now I am sure there are some folks out there, perhaps even you, shocked by that statement.  Maybe you are trying to reconcile the apparent contradiction between me stating that I am an unashamed, unembarrassed, proud missionary while also saying it sucks to admit it.  Maybe you feel I am being like Peter (not so much for being the rock of the church, but more so for denying Christ).  Or maybe you're just pissed I said sucks.  

Now I can try and justify my statement using statistics and eloquent prose, but lets be honest, if you have read ANY of my writings you know I can't.  Regardless, I feel it may be more enlightening to invite you in on a conversation I had last week.  

I was talking to this guy I know, lets call him "Gringo".  We met about a year ago and have seen each other a handful of times since.  I can't say that I know him enough to call him my friend, but he is a nice guy and I enjoy talking to him.  Anyway, we had been talking for a while when the conversation took an awkward turn.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Response to "The Perils of a 'Wannabe Cool' Christian"

I am so sorry to make a second post within a few short hours of my last post, but I just stumbled on an article that I feel needs to be discussed.

The article, written by Brett McCracken in the online version of the Wall Street Journal, is entitled, The Perils of a 'Wannabe Cool' Christian, and is Brett's attempt to explain why the youth within the church are "losing interest in the Christian establishment."  

Brett seems to place the blame of the mass exodus of young adults from the church on a backlash against the hipness factor which has been adopted by the modern church.  He sites many "marketing" techniques such as a cool new appearance driven church, tech focused congregations, and "shock" sermon topics like sex, which I can only assume he sees as disingenuous, as sparking the revolt, but I think he is missing something in his analysis.  

Friday, August 13, 2010

Snot-Nosed Gulliver

For the past few days I have been sick.  Not anything Ebola-esque with blood squirting out of my various orifices1, but fairly sick.  You know, a sore throat that feels like you have been yelling at the top of your lungs for days, headache, sneezing, achiness, and don't forget the general sense of malaise that oft accompanies these types of infirmities.

Oh, and I forgot the best part, the stuffy nose.  My nose completely clogged last night, much like the sink drain due to TheVWM's stray locks or my preparations for the occasional beach trip (older men and the spouses of older men should get the hairy-back shaving reference).  Anyway, since no air could pass through my nasal passages all night, I spent a fitful night mouth breathing.  Now for the coolest part, since I have this nifty hair sponge on my chin, I awoke to a really cool, actually it was more on the warm side, stream of slobber nestled deep within my beard.

8 hours worth of slobber sitting in my beard!

And now, as I type this post, literally as I am typing, my nose is starting to drain, but front-ways. Front-ways as in the genesis of the phrase "Snot-nosed".  Again, fortunate for me, I will be able to hold on to this moment thanks to the afore mentioned fur-ball on my face.

Anyway, I hate being sick.  The symptoms are often gross, you feel like a different person, and its just plain boring.  I hate it so much that I refuse to go to the doctor or take medication because that is what sick people do, and I don't want to be sick.  Being sick makes me want to lay down and do nothing, absolutely nothing.  So here is a look at my schedule for the past 3 days.

  • Wake up
  • Use the bathroom, maybe brush my teeth
  • Flip on the cable news and pass out
  • Wake up again, between noon and 3
  • Eat something
  • Flip on some interesting TV like Judge Judy or anything on HGTV
  • Greet the kids as they return from school, from the bed mind you
  • Pass out once more
  • Wake up around dinner time and eat something
  • Return to the bed and watch TV
  • Pass out until I wake up again
  • Repeat!

    Monday, August 9, 2010

    Why I'm Here

    There is a slight disagreement in our house right now.  Nothing major, nothing that is going to tear TheVWM and I apart, but nonetheless a disagreement.  The subject being our arrival here in Costa Rica.  She says its the August 7th, I say the 9th, but it we both agree it was 3 years ago that we first set foot in Central America as a family.

    Now we have shared some amazing times during these 3 years: we have learned (better yet, are learning) to speak spanish, made friendships and had the opportunity to share the love of Christ with many of these new friends, seen our sons grow into incredible young men who have shown more adaptability and ingenuity than most adults we know, not to mention the sights we have seen in this amazingly rich and diverse part of the wold, but...there have been days when all I can do is ask why.

    Why did I quit my job?, leave my family?, leave all that was comfortable and enjoyable in my life?

    or maybe just, 

    Why the hell am I here?

    Friday, August 6, 2010

    Droppin' Evangelism Bombs

    When we were preparing to move here to Costa Rica, someone told us that Costa Rica was a good "first step" missions location with, more or less, the following explanation:
    A first step missions location is a place that is safe and comfortable where people won't have to step too far out of their comfort zone and where they won't have to work TOO hard. Its a good place to get one's feet wet in missions, but hopefully people serving with you will want to move on to "real" missions opportunities.
    Yes, someone actually said that do us.

    Anyway, I guess others share that same view because I have seen a lot of people down here, not working with us, but a ton of missions teams coming down with their matching t-shirts, running into the town squares or squatter villages or even going door to door, dropping their "evangelism bombs", and fleeing back to the safety and comfort of North American life.

    What is an "evangelism bomb" you ask?

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