Archive | July 2013

On Time Management

I’m writing this entry much later in the week than I usually do. Time seems to have gotten away from me. It tends to do that a lot. Over the last few years I’ve been trying to learn how to balance all the things I have going on in my life. With Liam being born I’ve had a crash course in it. I’ve had to quickly learn to fit everything I need to do in a day into even less time than before.  It has become a little easier since he’s been sleeping better but some days it’s still a challenge.

I don’t pretend to be an expert on this but I have learned a couple of tricks for improvement.  The first is to schedule EVERYTHING.  It’s easy to say you are going to do something but when you write down a day and time it solidifies it and makes it a little more real.  I recently started using a tablet.  Lee makes fun of me for carrying it around with me but it really helps.  Sure I have my phone for a calendar but with the tablet I can more easily look at a month at a time.  Having the ability to have them all in sync really helps as well.

Another thing that I’ve been getting into the habit of doing is trying to prioritize better.  I read somewhere about this square for sorting priority.  It helps me list out the things that need to be done and in what order they should be done.  Things like a crying baby are in the Urgent and Important square but candy crush would be in the unimportant not urgent square.  It helps visually see what needs to be done so I can actually get them done.

Since I’ve started doing some of these things I’ve found life to be a little easier…I even have enjoyed some down time which has been great!  I’m looking forward to getting even better at this…maybe I’ll free up enough to to play a little Xbox now and then 🙂

On being a “Geek”

I’m not the stereotypical geek. Sure I wear thick framed glasses, love sci-fi, technology…ok maybe I do have some of those stereotypical tendencies.  I know that being a geek is some what cool now…I think…but it wasn’t too long ago that it meant you were an outcast.  We were forced to live out “geekdom” in basements playing D&D (actually I have never played it…). I’m not exactly sure when this change occurred.  I remember being made fun of  in elementary because I liked to keep myself looking neat by tucking in my shirt.  Once I got to high school I just started wearing khaki’s and golf shirts (pretty much still my standard attire)  because it was some what less conspicuous.

Growing up as a geek has it’s ups and downs.  Sure I had pretty good grades (would have been much better if I had done the work) but I didn’t have much of a social life.  I was (ok still am) a bit awkward around people.  I’ve gotten much better at faking it but still sometimes wonder if I’m saying the right things.  So middle school was hard for me.  A lot of people took advantage of the fact that I just wanted to fit in.  Asking me for help on homework or how to better understand a concept  and then make fun of me to their friends behind my back…sometimes to my face. We moved between 8th and 9th grade.  This was also the transition between Middle and High School.  I’m not sure if it was a good thing or a bad thing.  Sure people wouldn’t know my past at all but on the same token no one would know me.  I would pretty much lose the few friends that I had.  I had a better handle on how to assimilate at that point.  I did gain a few friends and luckily met my future wife :-).

I remember my first experience with technology.  Well “modern” technology anyway.  My dad bought a computer for work.  One day something stopped working so I thought hey how hard could it be to fix?  I opened the computer (it didn’t have an easy access side panel) and was amazed at what was inside.  I began to follow the cables to see what went where. Then I took it all apart and put it back together.  Now this didn’t fix the problem but It got my gears turning to computers.

I feel I have gotten really far off topic but then again it’s my blog…  Anyway I guess what I’m trying to say is that I’m glad “geek” culture is more accepted than it once was.  No longer do I get ridiculed for being who I am, which is nice.

On Being an Introvert

Many people hear the word introvert and thing of someone at a party who sits by themselves or “that quiet person”.  That’s not always the case.  Some of us introverts are really good at social interaction…it’s just draining.  It doesn’t mean we don’t like people, we just tend to give our energy away when we’re in groups.  Extroverts gain energy from being in groups…feeding off the atmosphere.

As an introvert I find that I need to take time to recharge after social interaction.  For example when I lead on Sunday morning I can be out going and engaging but when I get home I usually need a nap or at least to recline and watch some TV.  That doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy the social contact, I just need to recharge afterwards.

I find that there are a lot of misconceptions about introverts.  People tend to thing that we are somewhat standoff-ish or don’t like people.  That’s not the case at all.  We just interact a little differently.  Some people can just go into a group and start talking.  They get a rise out it.  They almost crave it.  I however do much better in a small group of people.  If there are 2 or 3 people in a group I have no problems.  I may not start every conversation but I will certainly participate.

On being a dad

Recently my wife and I went out to eat. As we arrived we were greeted by the hostess who asked us “Three this evening?” We looked around and realized our son was the third. As you can tell we are still getting used to the idea of being parents. I always thought while growing up that you had to have everything figured out to be a parent. If I had know we make it up as we go along I don’t think I would have been so eager to do so.

Liam was born on October 29th. Talk about a life change moment. I remember everything like it was yesterday and don’t think I’ll ever forget! Next to his actual birth the biggest moment that struck me was after they took us to the maternity wing. They wheeled Lee and I pushed Liam to you our room. They asked if we needed anything and when we said no they left. A wave of panic and terror came over me. I realized I had no idea what I was doing! I thought “HEY! Get back here and tell me what I’m supposed to do!”

After the moment of panic passed I slowly began to realize that I’m his father. Looking down at him I had a sense of calming. The world around me began to change. Things that were so important before suddenly weren’t a big deal. My baby burrito was the most important thing in the world now.

The next few months were kind of a sleepless blur. Late nights with multiple feedings certainly took it’s toll on me. After we all began to sleep a little better things got exciting. Liam was beginning to interact with the world. Each has milestone he reaches makes me swell with pride! I find myself wanting to get home from work. Not because I don’t like my job (I actually enjoy it) but to hang out with my family :-).

There I did it! A post that didn’t have to be split into multiple parts (although I could have easily done it).

New Song for July

vineyardnymedia:

New Song for July: “Fiery Love” by Sam Lane & Dan Wheeldon.

Our new song is a brooding anthem from our Vineyard friends across the pond. It radiates our DNA – words directed to God, emotive, expressive, and surely conducive to intimacy. I’m also pleased with the more modern styling of this arrangement – the song should be attractive to not just churched folk, but also to the unchurched.

As you learn this song, please consider these verses from Hebrews 12:

28 Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, 29 for our “God is a consuming fire.”

We are receiving a glorious and enduring and unshakeable Kingdom – because God himself sits on the throne and his rule and reign is sure to be over all in the end. So our response is to be thankful, to worship – because our “God is a consuming fire.” For the readers of the original context of this verse, the “consuming fire” referred to the jealousy of God – if we direct our worship anywhere but God, we are in danger of the consuming fire of his judgment.

However, you and I are under the law of grace and life – and that means that we see this word “consuming” not only as a warning, but also as a welcome outcome. We WANT to be consumed by the love of God, consumed by his power and majesty, set on fire as passionate followers of Jesus, giving ourselves to nothing else but him – and under the new way of life with God, he gives us power to do that through his spirit. The Passionate Lord of the Universe “holds our hearts with his fiery love” – what a great way to remind us that even though we “search” our hearts and “lay” ourselves down, God also makes us his through the jealous fire of his love.

Are you challenged by the content of our new song? How so? Do you feel like the current state of your devotion reflects this song? 

~ted

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