Sunday, May 17, 2009

1.21 Gigawatts!

Now that I've revealed I'm a bit of a sports fan, I'm also going to let you in on another secret. I'm a time-travel geek. I absolutely love the concept of time travel. I have to make it clear that I don't necessarily think it is possible for us to time travel, but I love it when people theorize about it. I'd like to pay tribute to some of the great pop-culture time traveling adventures:

Lost I watched the first 4 seasons of this show in the months right after I returned from Mississippi. It was a great coping mechanism and distraction from all the crazy emotions going on with me. I thought the show was decent during the first 4 seasons, but when the time travel concept came about in season 5, I officially labeled myself a LOST freak!

Back to the Future I think most will agree that this is the best time traveling movie/series out there. I loves me some Michael J Fox!

The Time Traveler's Wife From the moment I opened this book, I was hooked. While the plot can be very complex at times, the story is so incredible, it keeps you going until the end.

Bill and Ted I have to say, this was Keanu Reeves at his finest! Classic 80s. Love it. San Dimas High School football rules! (Yes, I own two of these movies on DVD)

Napoleon Dynamite Doesn't matter how many times I see it- Napoleon getting his junk fried by the time machine is hilarious!

Peggy Sue Got Married More from the classic 80s. I love the concept of Peggy Sue going back to high school and figuring out if she wants to change how things turned out. The ending is terrific.

A Wrinkle in Time I think this book is what got me started on my time travel obsession. I remember reading it as a kid and having the feeling that my head was spinning, but not wanting it to stop!

Lost in Austen I just watched this series this weekend and have to admit that I enjoyed it. It is about a women in 2008, in her 20s, obsessed with Pride and Prejudice, who somehow swaps places with Elizabeth Bennett and interferes with everyone's lives. Normally I steer clear of anything that tries to twist this tale, but I found out it was about time travel and couldnt stop myself from watching. It's like bubble wrap.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

I might be a sports fan after all

I hope you’re sitting down, because I’m about to blog about sports. I know, weird.

Nuggets Fever is hitting Colorado something fierce right now since they are playing better than they have in 24 years. They haven’t been the Western Conference Finals since before I was born, so I guess you could say they’ve been in a lull. We’ve seen the AVs, the Broncos and the Rockies all make it to their sport’s respective final game, but the Nuggets have been written off as somewhat of a joke. That isn’t to say that I’m not a fan of theirs. I very much enjoy the Nuggets even though they play a game I’m not particularly interested in (might have something to do with the embarrassment I suffered in 4th grade while playing basketball and I scored in my own basket).

Of course I still think professional basketball players are over-payed, ego-inflated giants full of testosterone. But I can look past all that and enjoy it for what it is. I’ve come to recognize how sports and other topics are important to our society. It is safe to talk about sports. In Mississippi, folks got tired of talking about Katrina and recovery and construction. But bring up the topic of the Saints or Brett Favre and you’ve got yourself a conversation filled with smiles and memories and hope. Same thing goes for today. Conversing with a neighbor can be awkward when they’ve lost their job, are about to lose their home and have no idea when this economy will recover. But talk about the Nuggets and you can forget all that.

We here with “I Have a Dream” have a particular interest in the Nuggets, since Anthony Carter, point guard and all around great guy, is an official spokesperson for our organization. Plus he generously gives the Dreamers a lot of money! Check him out on Wikipedia if you aren’t familiar with his story- it’s pretty inspiring.

Tonight the Nuggets play in game 5 against the Dallas Mavericks. I wish I didn’t have to work tonight, because I’m sure it is going to be an entertaining one to watch, especially after the drama-filled game on Monday. We got to see Dallas fans at their finest, the Mav’s owner offend Martin’s momma and Melo’s girlfriend, LaLa, leave early because of the harassing fans. Yikes. I admit the Mavs played well on Monday, but I don’t think they stand a chance on the Nugget’s home turf.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Lazy Sunday

"I believe the nicest and sweetest days are not those on which anything very splendid or wonderful or exciting happens, but just those that bring simple little pleasures, following one another softly, like pearls slipping off a string."
— L.M. Montgomery

Nothing splendid or wonderful happened in my world today, but it was filled with simple little pleasures. Sleeping in until my body was ready to wake. Taking two different dogs on two different walks. Going to the gym and enjoying the lack of creepy old men there. Cooking three meals and savoring each one. Talking on the phone to a friend. Reading a book. Reflecting. Lots of reflecting.

Central Pres received yet another punch in the stomach as we said goodbye to our organist Bruce Patterson. He died in a car accident on Tuesday and leaves behind his wife, grown son and teenage daughter. Bruce was on of the kindest and most compassionate persons I've ever met. Always a smile on his face, he made this world more beautiful with his incredible musical talent. I feel bad for whoever replaces him at the church piano bench, because he set the bar high.

Seeing our congregation come together through this tragedy has reminded me why I want to get into the church biz. For weeks I've been second guessing my decision to go to seminary because I can come up with a lot of reasons not to go: frustrations with the church, not really sure what it is I believe in, and of course the fact that I don't really enjoy the typical pastor stuff like preaching and praying out loud. This past week has reminded me how much the church and the people in it have shaped and formed me. To walk away from it would be inconceivable. I've seen some bad examples of ministry, but the heart of the church has remained genuine and that's why I'm sticking with it.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Thoughts on Poverty

The first of the month snuck up on me without warning and it is time again for the Presby Bloggers to Unite! This months topic is poverty, which normally I could write about until the cows come home. I had grand plans for talking about poverty in my backyard (Boulder, Co) as well as poverty in the next neighborhood over (Africa, Latin America, Southeast Asia, etc). But after a rather exhausting week at work I seem to be suffering from mental fatigue and writer's block. So, I will highlight the UN Millennium Development Goals which were created in 1990 and hoped to be met by 2015. In addition to listing the goals, I'll also make a few scattered notes for all they're worth.

1. Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger - Doesn't really seem like we've made much progress since thousands upon thousands die every day from hunger and about 1/6 of the world lives on less than a dollar a day.

2. Achieve universal primary education- not looking good for this one either, unless Oprah decides to keep opening schools all over the world.

3. Promote gender equality and empower women - I'm not really sure how the UN plans to define success on this one, but I'm not going to get into talking about how long this road is right now:)

4. Reduce child mortality.

5. Improve maternal health.

6. combat HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases- Not sure where I get this factoid, but I once heard that if Sub-Saharan Africa were granted full debt relief, they could afford to stop the AIDS epidemic in it's path.

7. Ensure environmental sustainability.

8. Create a global partnership for development.

2015 isn't far away. I'm curious to see how concerned the UN will be as the deadline for these goals draws near.

So what does this all have to do with Presbyterians? I have to say that I'm very proud of the work that the Presbyterian Church is doing as far as working to end poverty. There are some truly amazing ministries in the church and after working with Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, I've become very aware of how the Presbyterian family rallies for those in need. While I don't think the Presbyterian Church could ever be capable of solving the world's poverty problem, I do think it can play a vital role. I'd love to see mission be a more significant portion of the budget in all churches. I'd love to see more letter writing campaigns to our representatives. I'd also love to hear more conversations about the topic in sermons, Sunday School classes and at coffee hour. The Presbyterians have a reputation as being the wealthiest (per capita) church in the world and it is time to put our wealth to work!