It is not my goal to make my children’s lives easy. To be sure, neither is it my purpose to make their lives difficult. Rather, it is my goal and purpose to train them and shape them and prepare them for the lives they will be leading when they are no longer under my wing. And so, as any coach or trainer would, I must keep fresh in my mind the knowledge that difficulty often accompanies or even progresses the goals of training; ease rarely does. This does not mean I am to become a rigid, imposing drill instructor with no grace or mercy, but rather my love for my children compels me to stay focused on the larger purpose over the desires of any given moment.
4 April 7, 2009 at 8:33am by joel
2 October 16, 2008 at 11:05pm by joel
Yeah, so I still exist. I’ve been getting too caught up lately in political analysis, I must say. I’m much more fascinated by what people say about the candidates than by what they say themselves, oddly enough. Anyway, I’ve also recently started poking around a bit with Twitter, believe it or not, and I’m contemplating taking the Facebook plunge. The stain on the Intarweb that is MySpace (no, they don’ t even get a link from me) turned me off to the whole genre for awhile, but I’ve been assured that Facebook is actually for grownups. While I’m not sure how that makes me qualified, I’ve begun to be curious enough to perhaps check it out.
1 March 13, 2008 at 1:49pm by joel
Heidi pointed out these songs a couple of days ago, and they’ve been haunting me (in a good way) ever since. Two completely different styles, both full of incredible energy and emotion. See what you think…
I Can Hear the Rhythm by Misty Edwards
The More I Seek You sung by Kari Jobe
1 March 11, 2008 at 8:50pm by joel
Jonathan Walton over at Religion Dispatches Blog turns a critical eye to seminaries and churches, and how more and more they seem to inhabit completely different worlds. Good thoughts, and challenging. At first glance it may not seem relevant to the everyday layperson, but it seems to me we could all stand to be (and seek) a little less PowerPoint and MySpace and a little more deep and grounded truth.
7 February 29, 2008 at 3:14am by joel
Just a little update going on here, nothing to be alarmed about. Carry on…
1 February 13, 2008 at 12:20am by joel
Looking forward to your rebate check from Uncle Sam? How about a little perspective…
In a few months, every American is going to be getting $300-$600 rebate check to help “spur” on the economy. This is separate from your tax refund, and will cost the U.S. about $170 Billion.
Separately, did you know that the UN estimates that 25,000 people die EACH DAY (that’s eight 9/11 tragedies every day) because they lack access to clean water. They also estimate that $52 billion/year would provide the infrastructure to provide clean water to these folks. (WHO&UNICEF; Global Water Supply and Sanitation Assessment 2000 Report).
So we (whoever wants to) are going to be sending our rebate checks (part of it, all of it,… whatever) to help build wells in Africa instead of buying more junk to lay around the house (or more fast food, or more entertainment,…).
The org is called BareFootWorld, and their (current) project is to ask people to give them a portion (or all) of their rebate check so they can send it all on to 1000 wells to get clean water to people who need it. Want to give straight to 1000 wells instead? That’s cool too (it’s all going there anyway), just let the folks at BareFootWorld know so they can tally it in their total.
Or, you know, you could buy another toaster or something.
2 February 5, 2008 at 1:06am by joel
I usually try to think of something witty or insightful or even vaguely amusing or at the very least somewhat relevant when putting up a link that will just send you off somewhere else, but this time there’s nothing to say. Watch the first video for some stats that will make your eyes pop and your stomach sink. Then if you’ve got the guts, watch the second. Yes, that’s a challenge.
It’s high time we stop worrying about offending someone’s sensibilities. God help us…
0 January 4, 2008 at 3:40pm by joel
So Edwards got a slightly higher percentage of the vote than Hillary, and is therefore widely being given media attention focusing on his second place showing over Hillary’s third (and what that means for their respective campaigns). End of story for Iowa, except…
In a mini-replay of the popular-vote-vs.-electoral-vote difference, this page seems to indicate that even though he got more votes, she’s getting more delegates. Isn’t that what counts after all? I doubt this fact has escaped her campaign folks; I’m a little surprised I haven’t seen any “Well, actually…”-type spin from her camp yet.
4 January 4, 2008 at 11:15am by joel
I’m thinking a Huckabee-McCain ticket would be a pretty powerful thing. Huck carries the conservatives who are concerned with a few of Mac’s social positions, and Mac carries enough foreign policy cred for both of them. It would seem they differ on the current administration’s Iraq policies, but in the heat of political battle that shouldn’t be too difficult to reconcile to present a united front for a way forward.
If McCain were on top, on the other hand, I wouldn’t be surprised at all if he picked Lieberman for veep. Unfortunately, while there’s the whole bi-partisan appeal going for it, I don’t think it’s as compelling a ticket overall and would most likely fall to Obama-Hillary.
Scratch that. She’d never accept veep.
2 November 20, 2007 at 2:01pm by joel
So I’ve now done a garbage disposal replacement three times now, and this last one was the easiest by far because of a tip I stumbled across on the web. Usually the most difficult and/or annoying thing about getting the old one out and the new one in is the sheer weight of the thing. They easily start at ten or fifteen pounds up to a whopping 25.5 pounds for the InSinkErator Evolution Excel (which we have at home, and highly recommend). The weight factor seems to be amplified by the awkwardness of reaching in a somewhat tight cabinet space to work with it. When you take the old one out you have to use the little hex wrenchette to unlock and turn the retainer ring while somehow holding the disposal unit up so it doesn’t come crashing down in your cabinet when the ring releases. And when you put the new one in you have to hold it up long enough to get all three tabs around the ring hooked on to their respective tracks and turned enough to support the unit’s weight. Not fun, and there usually isn’t enough room under the cabinet for someone else to get their arms in there to help you.
Solution: grab the scissor jack from the trunk of your car. This was a head-smacker for me, as in “why didn’t I think of that?” Some folks recommend using a 2×4 due to a “flimsy bottom” on the disposal. I didn’t have any trouble with that, but if the bottom of yours seems thin it wouldn’t be a bad idea, and would probably help with balance anyway (I just held the side of it). Anyway, this made the whole process so much easier I’d almost say it’s worth the twenty-five bucks to pick up a jack for the job if you don’t already have one.