Saturday, April 29, 2006


Tonight Invisible Children is sponsoring a Global Night Commute. This is taking place in countries across the world ranging from Ireland to Peru to Singapore to the United States as a display of solidarity with the children in Northern Uganda. People in 7 countries will converge on their urban centers tonight (and sleep there) to urge their governments step in on behalf of the children. Because of the situation in Uganda, the children must commute to the cities at night in order to avoid capture by the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) - they are simply not safe to remain in their villages after nightfall.

This war in Uganda is simply not one the United States has been willing to get involved in. But the Global Commute in the United States is taking place in most of the major cities across the country. While there, each person will write two letters: one to President Bush and the other to a Senator asking them to please intervene on behalf of the Ugandan children. Currently there are 57,030 people signed up in the United States; 803 so far in Waco, TX.

I'm usually not an advocate of government stepping in where the Christ's Church clearly has a responsibility; but this is different. This situation is one that we can't to much without the help of our government. So, we turn where we can: to our President, our senators, and most importantly to God. If at all possible please join us tonight, in your city, wherever you are. To sign up you can CLICK HERE.

Friday, April 28, 2006


That's all I can say. Or I can say that SOMETIMES CHRISTIANS JUST SCARE ME!

This is an absolute hoot! This is an actual voicemail to a pastor from a man who visited a church. To listen CLICK HERE. Enjoy!

P.S. My Bible doesn't have a 1st Acts - I must have a defective Bible!

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

The Grovester Rocked!

Shaun Groves utterly rocked my face off the other night!!!!! I think it's still somewhere at the Hippodrome. Great to talk with you in person again, Shaun. Keep up the great work your doing for His Kingdom.

Here's some pictures:

Shaun playing at Baylor's Chapel services.

Shaun singing with his guitar (it's just like mine!! Yay!) at the Hippodrome.

Shaun and I after the concert.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

"Let's Get Campy!"

I just spent the weekend on a retreat with our college group. We went out to Lake Whitney on Friday and camped - with no television, no cell phone, no blog. It was really nice to just get away from the craziness we use to drown out God and life altogether. About half the group was outdoorsy; the other half (myself included) was not. But we had a great time; just did some fishing and started a new song. There was also so much talk of Brown Recluse spiders among the girls in our party, I began to become paranoid by the end of the trip. Jon led our Bible studies. And God spoke to my heart through the life of Elijah.

First, Elijah was brave: an adjective that rarely describes me. Elijah went in front of one of the worst King and Queen the Hebrews had ever known. He told them that there would be a drought, and then God told Elijah to run for his life. YHWH provided for Elijah and then consumed the offering when Elijah proved the existence of YHWH over the existence of Baal. (Read 1 Kings 17-18 for the full details; the story's really quite remarkable.)

Elijah had moments of doubt, he had questions - he was just like me. Many times I fall into the trap of thinking of the saints in the scriptures as these super-human folks who, because God worked through them, had it all figured out. It's refreshing to realize they could be just as messed up as the rest of us. And that God did not work through them because they were perfect, he worked through them because HE is perfect. It was nice to regroup and just focus of the character of God and the character of our own humanity for the weekend. I don't have it anywhere near 'all figured out,' but God showed me that's OK. All it takes is trust.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Psychotherapy... On Myself

I have done some research, and realized I am suffering from Separation Anxiety Disorder tonight. I took my beautiful Yamaha CPX15 North (pictured here) guitar to my usual guitar doctor (Larry, or as he calls it "gEEtar" - he's from East Texas, I think). She needed some fretwork and a setup before I can do some recording this weekend with her. But I now realize that I am suffering without her tonight (I hope I'm not creeping anyone out - You "geetar" people completely understand, right?). So anyways, I did some research (on google) and found out I am suffering from Separation Anxiety Disorder. Here's what the webpage said:

Developmentally inappropriate and excessive anxiety concerning separation from home or from those to whom the individual is attached, as evidenced by three (or more) of the following:

1. recurrent excessive distress when separation from major attachment figures (MY GEETAR) occurs or is anticipated

2. persistent and excessive worry about losing, or about possible harm befalling, major attachment figures (MY GEETAR)

3. persistent and excessive worry that an untoward event will lead to separation from a major attachment figure (e.g., getting lost or being kidnapped) - (ONCE AGAIN, MY GEETAR)

4. persistent reluctance or refusal to go to school (YES!!!) or elsewhere because of fear of separation

5. persistently and excessively fearful or reluctant to be alone or without major attachment figures (YEP! HERE TOO) at home or in other settings

6. repeated nightmares involving the theme of separation (I'M SURE THEY WILL START TONIGHT!)

7. repeated complaints of physical symptoms (such as headaches, stomachaches, nausea, or vomiting) when separation from major attachment figures occurs or is anticipated

Uh,oh!! I think I qualify!! Now I trust Larry, my gEEtar doctor, completely... but I'm still a bit nervous. Anyone know of any cures? I'd hate to have to call Dr. Phil.

Sunday, April 16, 2006


I found this diary among Judas's things. For anyone happpening to read this, I thought I should finish the story. First of all, Judas hanged himself yesterday. Apparently out of guilt from selling Jesus out. But if only Judas knew what happened today.

Simon Peter and I were talking early this morning, when Mary came running. She was panting from running so hard. She was nearly in tears. She thought someone had stolen Jesus's body from the tomb we had put him in. When we heard what she said, we both began to panic. Who would steal the body of our Lord and why??!!! Peter and I ran to the tomb; I could feel that sinking feeling in my stomach and heavy knot in my throat. I outran Peter (I've always been faster than him!), and so I reached Jesus's tomb first. I bent in and looked inside. I could see the strips of cloth Jesus had been wrapped in, but I did not go inside. Peter finally ran up, but he went right on inside the tomb. He saw what I saw, and I followed him inside. It was at that moment that I realized Jesus had come back to life. Some of the things he had said began to make sense, though not all of them. But one thing I knew, Jesus was no longer dead. He was executed on a cross, was dead for three days, but today he is alive!!! I saw him, spoke to him!!!! My LORD is alive!!!!!!

If Judas only knew...


Saturday, April 15, 2006


God is dead! God is dead, and it's my fault!!!!!!! It's because of me that my Rabbi is dead!!! It's my fault!! Damn!!!!! What have I done?! Jesus really was different; I understand it all now. Jesus was the second David, the Messiah, and IT'S MY FAULT THAT HE'S DEAD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Jesus healed blind people, he made the lame walk. He was who he said he was. Jesus was God himself. And now he's dead!!!!!!! And it's all because of ME!!!!!!!!!! I just tried to return the 30 pieces of silver to the priests, they wouldn't take it!!!! So I threw it at their feet.

The words of Jesus keep running through my head over and over again - I can't escape what I've done!!!!!! I can't sleep; I can't hear; I can't think.

I CAN'T GO ON LIVING!!!!!!!!...

Judas Iscariot

Friday, April 14, 2006


Last night I led some Roman soldiers to the Garden of Gethsemane to take Jesus into custody. I kissed him on the cheek, not only to show the soldiers he was the one they were to arrest, but also in a way as a sort of apology of what I'd done.

This morning, the high Priests put Jesus on trial. I watched as much of it as I could. They kept accusing him of things like blasphemy. But over and over again, the government officials did really want to do anything to Jesus. But the crowds started falling inline with the Priests. Ciaphus and the guys kept saying that they demanded Jesus be punished for what he'd done. Everyone became like a mob - shouting and screaming. Jesus was ordered to be flogged. I didn't get a good view of this; the crowds were too heavy. I was able to get just close enough to kind of see what was going on. But I could still hear him scream in pain. This lasted almost an hour. I will never forget hearing the pain than the whips caused him. But I thought it would all be over and then they'd leave all of us alone afterwards. But no.

It wasn't enough. The Priests and the crowds began to demand his execution. Over and over they shouted for him to be nailed to a cross - executed in the traditional Roman way. One official offered the crowd a choice: Jesus or a convicted murderer, I forget his name, Barabus, I think. Anyways, it really wasn't much of a choice. I knew as well as everyone else, what the crowd would chose. Pilate 'washed his hands' of the situation. And I couldn't believe it; they weren't just going to jail or whip Jesus, they were going to kill him!

I followed along the outside of the crowd as Jesus was made to walk to the Hill of the Skull. I saw Mary and John, they were both crying. I began to panic - my heart was beating faster than I thought it could handle. Jesus carried the cross-bar he would soon be nailed to. I couldn't believe my eyes. When we arrived at the hill, the soldiers began to put the cross together. Jesus was laid down on top. I can still hear him screaming as the soldiers drove nails into his wrists. They pounded them as if they were breaking stone. Over and over, I heard Jesus scream. I couldn't believe my eyes. Had it really gone this far?

For those of you who have seen a crucifixion first-hand, you know that death doesn't come quickly. I heard Jesus talking to the two people being crucified with him, I think they were theives, but I maybe wrong. I couldn't tell what he said, I was too far away. Underneath his cross, soldiers were gambling for the clothes they'd just stripped off of him. I think they did this to futher rouse the crowds. Mary broke down. When I saw this, I realized I wasn't dreaming after all. He was really dying. The clouds suddenly grew dark. I felt the earth shake underneath my feet. I couldn't take it anymore! I ran off...


Thursday, April 13, 2006


Thirty pieces of silver. That's what the Chief Priests said they'll give me for him. Thirty pieces of silver, that's the going price of an average slave. Turn my Rabbi over to the others for the price of a common slave? Then again wouldn't I be defending the Jewish tradition, if the problems Jesus is causing are as bad as they say? I mean, wouldn't it be my duty as a pius Jew to turn Jesus of Nazareth over to them?

I still don't know if I did the right thing. Tonight was our passover meal. Things went different this time than they usually do. Jesus did this weird thing, where as he passed around the wine and bread, he said that the wine was his blood and the bread was his body. It kind of made sense and it kind of didn't. Later on, he turned to me and said to go ahead and do what I was going to do. It wasn't until he said that that I realized I had made up my mind to take the money. I decided to turn Jesus over to the high priests. But how did he know? I figured I could get some money out it, be a pius Jew, and well, come on what are they going to do to him? fine him? put him in prison for a little while? It just gets me, how Jesus knew, that's what I was going to do? I ran out mainly out of embarrasment that he knew I was going to turn him in. But I ran out knowing I'd still turn him over, despite the fact that he knew it was me.

But you know, as I think about it, what I can't get past, was that my Rabbi washed my feet. A while back, Jesus knelt down and did the most humiliating job possible. I didn't understand it then, and frankly I don't understand it now. But in that moment, when he washed my feet, I realized he was different. That's why I'm still wondering if I did the right thing turning him over to the high priests.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006


I don't know what to do. I've been following this man around for a while; his teachings are inspiring and the way people come to him is unimaginable. But things are getting rough. We think we're all about to be run out of town at moment. This problem has been growing bigger for some time now. My teacher knows that he's causing problems for our religious leaders, but he doesn't seem to mind. He seems to know that he's going to get us into hot water, but he doesn't seem to care.

It's gotten so bad that several of our religious leaders are starting to ask for him to be brought in on charges. Things are really starting to get messed up; I don't know what to do. I wanted to follow him - I love him, after all, but I'm beginning to wonder if it was worth it in the first place. What if they bring us all up on charges? What if I'm arrested? I hear they are even willing to offer a reward for him. I wonder what they will give to someone who turned him in? I wonder what they would give me - when they realize that I'm one of his students; when they realize that I'm Judas Iscariot?

The Mother of Invention...

is not necessity, it is boredom. Jay, one of my good friends through school, showed me a new game he invented to get out of the monotony of homework. It was fun, so well I share it in hopes that you will try it when you get bored.

Here's how you play...
YOU NEED: 5 Ceramic Turtles (You can get them @the Dollar Store for like a buck each)
4 Florescent Rubber Bouncy Balls (You can get these @ the Pizza Hut for a quarter each)

You arrange the Turtles against a wall like this:

*___________ *______ *______ *___________ *

You can start with one ball at a time. You throw the ball(s) trying to bounce them on the turtles' shells, but without them bouncing or flying out of the playing zone (the two turtles on the end). As your skills improve, you can add more balls and heck, more turtles if you like. Enjoy.

Monday, April 10, 2006


Yes! I have finallly hooked up my Mac to the World Wide Web. I usually blog from places other than home b/c it's hard to use blogger without high speed (I previously had dial-up). But in order to get the updates I need for my other Macs and such, and to download my music on myspace, I now have my Mighty Mac (as I call it) online at 28kps. Not a hitch hooking it up to high speed, execept for the fact that the cable guy didn't remember how to make the right connections on Mac, but OS X.4 took care of it! 1.3251 minutes later, I was online. So I am online and I now can laugh at and And I can blog from the comfort of my home. Yay!

Friday, April 07, 2006

He's Got My Vote!

Vote youth pastor Jon Hicks Governor of your respective states! He is running on the platform: "THE HECK WITH DAYLIGHT SAVINGS TIME!"

Judging Judas

The news broadcasts were abuzz last night. Yesterday National Geographic announced they they had authenticated a lost gospel: The Gospel of Judas. The news reporters interviewed a few scholars and a serveral Christians to get their reaction (some were freaking out). Then the reports began to focus on a different issue: if what is says it true, mainly Jesus was behind Judas's betrayal, Jesus asked Judas to betray him.

So, I can understand how many Christians might see this as a shock, but I guess I work through this so we can all understand what implications this means. First and foremost, what was authenticated was its antiquity. The Gospel of Judas was written in coptic, it was a Gnostic work, and it's dated to the late 3rd Century/early 4th Century AD. The Gnostic were a frenge group of folks branded heretics around this time. We have several other Gnostic writings including The Coptic Gospel of Thomas. These works are nothing new to Biblical scholars. What was authenticated was that this work is originally from this time period. A score to historians.

What was NOT authenticated, or even considered, was what is says as truth. This work would not have even been considered for inclusion in the Bible because of it's late date. All the works in the NT are dated 1st Century and some, possibly early 2nd Centuries. Nothing later than that is even considered to have merit in truth because it was written too late from the events that took place during Jesus's life. Not even the Didache, written teaching by supposed Apostles, was included, in part because of it's date, and its date is late 2nd Century.

So, yes it's a great thing to find a writing from antiquity like the Gospel of Judas. But it can offer no theological insight (execpt from a Gnostic point of view) for Christians. It's date is too far removed from the time of Jesus, and the community that is originates does not hold any merit among theologians. So, Christians relax; your theology is safe... for the moment.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Seminary Day

Yesterday was Seminary Day at Baylor. It was kind of like those Career Days back in High School. I looked at about four and walked away with stuff from three: Princeton Theological Seminary, Duke Divinity School, and Truett Theological Seminary. I recently threw out Princeton, it's a little too north for me (New Jersey).

But I'm seriously looking into Duke. It's a Methodist school with ecumenical tendencies; which is great because I am a Baptist with anabaptist and lutheran tendencies. Their M.Div. program looks really great and they have an incredible faculty including Stanely Hauerwas and Richard Hays. I'm going to visit the campus either late this summer or the beginning of fall, so that I can apply in the fall if I decide I want to go there.

Truett is also a great school; a good majority of my friends are going there either this fall or next year. Also, Truett has an great faculty, that encourage discussion. Also a plus for Truett is that it's cheap and in Waco.

So, I guess I got some prayin' to do.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Abandoning Politics

I read a book last year that not only changed by political views, but more importantly, my Theologial views. Resident Aliens by Stanley Hauerwas made me think. Hauerwas begins by noting a fact many Christians, including myself, have ingored or are in denial about. Before the 1960s Amercia had existed as a Constantian society. Since the days of Constantine, not only was Christianity the legal religion, it was enforce by laws. Amercia was a continuation of that world.

However, that world ended and Christianity is not longer the driving force of laws within our country. And this is a good thing. Christians can no longer rely on laws to keep a Biblical moral code in order. Rather, they must rely on their witness, and focus first of conversions.

Since Christians are no longer succeeding at made things like gay marriage illegal, thereby legislating morality... more Christians are recognizing that the job of the Church is not to enforce morality on society, but rather their job is to be the people of God. How can Christians impose the moral standards of Christ on a group who does not know or follow him?

So I abandoned politics... frankly I just don't see how much of it really matters. I was an adamant memeber of the "Christian-Right" (whatever that means). Pro-Life. Pro-War. (Which, now in my mind seem to contradict one another.) There are some views I continue to hold, but for different reasons. Laws should be made according to what is best for society, not according to what the Bible says. After all, Jesus said his kingdom is not of this world. Amercia is not a theocracy, nor should it be.

I became a pacifist and realized that what may be best in America's interest (i.e., a war on terrorism) is not necessarily something Christians should be a part of. My anabaptist views have driven me to a point of apoliticalism. I do think that there are issues to be addresses as a society, which we are all a part of. But I just don't believe legistlating Christian morals (learned only through the teachings and relationship with Christ) through the political system of a secular nation is the answer.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Called on the Carpet

Pat Robertson, president of the 700 Club has been in the news lately for some seemingly unChristian words. 1 CORINTHIANS 5:12-13 tells us that Christians have a resposiblity to keep other Christians in line, those who are doing things that harm the kingdom of God... an kind of accoutability if you will. Apparently some Christians are tired of the "Christian Public Figure's" actions and words and are calling him on the carpet over them. The petition reads:

Dear Rev. Robertson,
We appreciate all your hard work and dedication to ministry over the years, but we are now asking that you please retire or at least stop making unfounded, insane-sounding comments and trying to pass them off as mainstream Christian thought such as:

1. Calling for the assassination of foreign heads of state (Hugo Chavez).

2. Telling people God will abandon or punish/destroy them (Dover, PA residents) because they exercised their right to vote against intelligent design supporting school board members.

3. Saying that morbidly overweight, elderly heads of state (Ariel Sharon) have strokes as the result of punishments from God for seeking peace rather than simple cardiovascular disease.

Seriously Pat, you're embarrassing the rest of us Christians who are trying to demonstrate God's love and mercy to a broken world already suspicious of religion and religious people.

The Undersigned

You can check out the petition by clicking here.

Greetings Fellow Sinners,

I've been reading my way through William H. Willimon's book Sinning Like a Christian. Willimon was Dean of Duke University Chapel before his appointment as Presiding Bishop of the Birmingham Area of the United Methodist Church. He's written a zillon and1 books including Resident Aliens with Stanley Hauerwas, one of the most influencial theologians in my life. Willimon was named one of the "Twelve Most Effective Preachers in the Enlish-Speaking World" by Baylor University (my school, yay!).

"For Christians, sin is not so much inherent in the human condition...; rather, sin is the problem we have between us and God. It is rebellioin agaist our true Sovereign, an offense against the way the Creator has created us to be," writes Willimon.

I picked up this book last weekend as I roamed the halls of Truett Seminary. There were booksellers and folks of that sort there. Sinning Like a Christian is about the 'Seven Deadly Sins.' Willimon notes that the reason they are called the 'Seven Deadly Sins' is because they are sins we cannot shake, we can't seem to get rid of; rather, they are chronic, presistent. The sins of Pride, Envy, Anger, Sloth, Greed, Gluttony, and Lust.

If it were not for the example of Jesus, we would not know that pride be a sin, Willimon writes. He also takes a unique look at lust.

"Lust, along with Pride, has undergone considerable rehabilitation in our own day. No one wants to be accused of Envy or Greed, but Lust has become a quite endearing characteristic of modern enlightened folk like us. In modern life, the damaging thing about lust is surpressing it. In an earlier day, masturbation was a sin. Now, it's a cure."

We've been working our way through the whole sex thing at THE LEAP. One of the main issues we are tackling is lust. This is where all the rest of sexual sins seem to come from, for a guy at least.

But Willimon's book has caused me to look at sin in a different way. We all fall short of God's glory, of His intentions for us. We are prone to depravity. And it is only because of Jesus that we can understand our depraved nature.

"Once there was One who came to us, who touched the untouchables, turned his back upon the world's bright baubles, loved even unto death, and never turned his eyes away from God. And we hated him for it. He came to us with wide-opened hands in gracious invitation, seeking us, both patient with us and hotly pursuing us. And thereby he brought out the very worst in us. And we with one voice cried, "Crucify him!"

Amen and amen.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

The Lost Art of...

putting stuff on cats.

This is a real funny! Shari pointed me in the direction of I thought that this picture of a boat on someone's cat was a hoot. Check out this website when you're bored.

P.S. for yall animal rights folks, don't worry - they don't hurt the felines.