Friday, March 16, 2007

Happy Spring Break and St. Patrick's Day!

Well, it is that time of year again. The weather is absolutely beautiful, the yard needs mowing, kids get out of school for a week, and you get pinched for not wearing green. Oh yeah and let’s not forget the NCAA Tournament.
Summer and I took the kids to Sea World with the Clarks. We had a blast. Summer and the kids have never been to Sea World. The shows were awesome. I even got to touch a dolphin. It has actually been around 20 years since I’ve been. It is amazing what they can train those dolphins and whales to do.
In one of the shows a sea lion jumped a little too far and went over the wall in front of the audience. He was ok, but you could tell it wasn’t supposed to happen by looking at the trainer’s reaction.
It’s also a time for spring cleaning. Summer just put a ton of stuff in a consignment sale last weekend. It is a time to weed out old toys, clothes you can’t wear anymore, and decorations that you’ll never use again.
Maybe spring time is a great time to do some spiritual cleaning as well. I challenge each of you to take an inventory of your spiritual temple and clean the cob webs out of that dark corner of your soul. Take out the trash. Open the windows of your heart so that the Son can shine in and you can breath in the fresh wind of the Spirit.
But remember that the only way to clean your temple is to ask God. Remember the words of David:
“Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow...Create in me a clean heart O God and renew a steadfast spirit within me.” Psalm 51:7. 10

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Picture of the competition

International Competitors

15 years ago in 1992, I had the honor of competing internationally in a quartet with my dad. It was a dream of my dad to be able to do that. It was special that we were able to do that together. He passed away 6 months after competing in that competition. I've had a dream to be competing again on that level and hopefully one day winning an international quartet gold medal.

The only problem is that the standards and quality of quartets since 1992 have gone up. It is very difficult to make it to an international level. You are scored in 3 different categories, which is music, singing, and presentation. All are closely related, but have different focuses in their judging. You have to get a 76% average to compete at the international level. Most gold medal quartets sing around the 90% level.

This past weekend we scored at 78.7%. That has earned us the right to compete internationally this summer in Denver, CO. Though we have a lot of work to do we are excited about getting to compete against the best 50 quartets in the world. (in our style of music of course)

Thursday, March 01, 2007

3 Years

Today is my 3 year anniversary at Preston Road. It is hard to believe it has already been 3 years. In that time, my family and I have lived in 3 different places. Micah has started school. Rebekah was born. I went out of country for my first time. I've won a gold medal. In the next few months several other things are about to happen. My wife and I will celebrate 10 years of marriage. The worship team will be singing at Pepperdine. My quartet should be competing internationally this summer. Alot can sure happen in 3 years.

I was encouraged and challenged by a passage yesterday. Acts 17:24-28 says:

24 "The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by hands. 25 And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything, because he himself gives all men life and breath and everything else. 26 From one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. 27 God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us. 28`For in him we live and move and have our being.' As some of your own poets have said, `We are his offspring.' NIV

God has put us here for a purpose and where we live and where we are in life was planned by God long before we were concieved in the womb. Read Psalm 139 sometime. Yet He still planned our life with our free will in mind. Will I decide to live for God's purpose where He has planted me?

We should all seek to live out God's purposes where we are now, because God has you now exactly where He intends you to be.