Monday, December 29, 2008


In writing and drawing, shading is my favorite thing.

Currently I am entrenched in having to make broad, sweeping strokes (outlining a story for a script I'm working on), and I'm having trouble with it.

That's okay, though. Drawings that I don't like at a first pass, normally find their feet while I'm shading. I just have to grit my teeth until then.

All right. I'm going back to it. Just thought I'd share that.

Friday, December 26, 2008


I am very grateful for my new Sam Phillips album. Thank you, Mama and Papa.

I had a great Christmas.

I cried over one present. It was a vest.

I plan on watching my favorite Christmas/noir movie tonight.

I love my cousins. All of them.

I love Over the Rhine. I'm grateful for Jeffery Overstreet.

I don't know how to spell the name "Jeffery".

I feel the sadness a soul feels when it is flying over a large body of water.

Dear God, I'm so grateful for what you did. More to the point: For what's your doing. It's got to be in the present tense with me, doesn't it?

Emanuel, take me. I need home and your arms.


I know it's a little late, but, if you're interested, Slacktivist has put up a great Christmas meditation by Anne Lamott.

Enjoy and Merry Christmas. And thank God for Emmanuel.

My Favorite Movies of the Year

I haven't seen that many movies this year, but, well, here it goes:


The Dark Knight

Iron Man

Was Juno released this year? There Will Be Blood? The New World? I like those movies.

I still want to see:

Man on Wire
Synecdoche, New York

Does anyone else have any recommendations from this year's movies?

Understated, but it'll get you excited.

Q's preview of U2's No Line On The Horizon:


Tuesday, December 16, 2008

I found this on Jeff Overstreet's blog and thought it was enjoyable.

Monday, December 15, 2008

"Whoever brought me here/ is gonna have to take me home."

Father, Dad, Creator, Guy Who Knows What’s Going On Here,

I give you the messy sea of who I am. I give you my tangled desires, my unwanted wants.

I give you my needs and my neediness. I give you my soul and my spirit. Whatever those are, the essence of me, whatever that might be.

I give you this beating heart. It’s led me wrong before. I give you analytical mind; it’s a crazy loop of best guesses and what-ifs.

Lord, you made me. You know what’s going all here.

Dear Heavenly Father, maker of the stars. I give you my sleepy eyes. My they see you, for they are starved otherwise.

My bare feet feel the fake carpet.

Jesus take my all, take all of who I am. It occurs to me that maybe there are people who ask this from a place of surrender. Of a kind of spiritual, die-to-yourself nirvana. Asking for it because they’re holy and they’ve got it all put together. I ask because I don’t have it all put together, because everything’s falling apart. Not dramatically, but in slow motion, like a house in an Andrei Tarkovsky film.

I ask it for purely selfish reasons. I’ve had this soul long enough and really don’t want it anymore. I trust you. You’re strong. And I thank you for taking me into your hands.

Thank you. And Love,

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Grateful Tuesdays # 26

Dear Heavenly Father,

Thank you for the feel of the keys typing underneath my fingers. For the pressure and give and the creating of words.

Thank you for giving us the ability to create. To populate the white page. Thanks for wanting this.

You know, that’s hard for me to believe. It was hard for me to write “wanting” instead of “being okay with.” I wonder why that is?

Creating is your thing, God. You commissioned Adam and Eve to fill the Earth. To populate the white page.

You want us to work with our hands. To express ourselves. This seems selfish to me when I think about it (the idea of me sitting off, in my own little corner, essentially creating self-portrait after self-portrait). But, somehow — and I’m not saying I fully under stand this, this is a part of your plan. Me expressing myself somehow factors into the War of Heaven and Judgment and Hell and Heaven and Earth and everything in between. And even the business of Heaven long before. Which, I suppose that, if I have you in me, me expressing myself works out pretty well for you in the long run. And me.

Thank you for that.

Thank you for the concert last night. The beautiful music and the beauty of music. Thank you for the soaring, crying guitar, the words written in blood, the voice with so much fullness. Thank you for the fun of it all too, God. The interaction between the band members on stage and with the crowd.

Above all these elements of the evening, God, thank you for the people I went with. The joy that each one of them brings into my life. Thank you for the fun of getting dressed up and going to an event. The anticipation.

Thank you for these wood animals on my desk.

Thank you for the film in these canisters.


Thank you for this evening. For leading and guiding.


I thought this was very creative...

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Gabe; you should see this:

Hension and Del Torro together? With this material? I'm there.

And Alice news. Some people have weird, can't be explained or hard to explain loves (obsessions?). My cousin collects nutcracker dolls. I collect Alice In Wonderland stuff. Well, not really stuff. Just different copies of the book. (The full title, by the way, of Carroll's book [Disney aside] is: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. I say this only because I'm embarrassed that I reverted the Disney title first. I want you to at least know there is a difference.)

I also like (though I don't nearly as much about as I'd like to) animation related things. So you can imagine that I was at least intrigued by the description of this book:

Look who's adapting the book!

Christopher should watch these:

Misc. Thoughts Late at Night


I don't want to make positive messages. I don't want to teach kid's positive messages about interacting with each other and teach people how to be moral.

I want to engage the truth. I want put my hands in the messiness of living and of reality and see what I end up holding.

I am not passing along a message. I do not want to make better citizens of the boys and girls who watch my movies. I want to engage with reality. The messiness of being human. I want to live and, through me, for my films to have life. I want to name. (and be named.) I want to live in the white, harsh light of reality and babble henceforth (as that experience dictates).

I want to live. And to love and to tell the truth. I want to know and allow myself to be know. I want to live.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Eden and Animals and Wallpaper and The Fall of Man

This picture was the background on my computer for a while (tiled). It's not any more (a poster for "Ordet" is serving that post now).

It's a depiction of the animals in the Garden of Eden. It's pretty, isn't it? I love the colors in it. And the shapes are so pleasing.

And sad too. It was a long time before I caught this, but do you see what's going on in the background? This is a good example of what Christian art can do. Create (or point to the already existing) longing for the beauty that was or could be or is supposed to be. This painting encapsulates that well I think.

Monday thoughts from a coffee shop

Yesterday, at about 5:45 pm, we (Jeremy Imig and I [and our little tag-along and helper Lye-Lye]), finished filming for our most recent Kid's Club series Wanted!. Right now I feel so grateful and relieved. I'm so glad to be beyond that monster. I loved writing and directing the series, but it consumed my time and life, especially toward the end of the shoot.

My friend Jeremy is diligently editing right now. God created him as some kind of monster. With the ability work without tiring until the job is done. I asked him (indirectly) if he wanted my help in the editing room and he (more directly) said no. I knew he would. I make things take longer when I get involved.

In my defense, Walt Disney did the same thing. I learned on the commentary track to Dumbo that the film was made in an unusually short amount of time for a Disney film and that many joked that this was because Disney was less involved than normal in the making of the movie. I think this is very funny. And I take comfort in two things here: Knowing that this master slowed things down when he was involved, and also in knowing that in his absence, a good movie, Dumbo, still came out of the process.

Kind of covers me, peace of mind-wise, on both ends of the spectrum I think.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Thanksgiving 20 OCT 2008

Dear God,

Thanks you so much for my friend Jeremy. Thank you for how much fun it is to ride in the car with him places and for the friendship we share. Thanks for letting me be close friends with someone this long, long enough to work through a lot, to learn a lot about myself.

Oh Jesus, so much about myself. As I think about the things about myself you’ve shown me through this friendship and others, I think about how far you’ve brought me. And, God, I know I have a long way to go, but I thank you so much for your faithfulness. I’ve seen your promises made good in my life.

Thank you for the music of Bob Dylan. He’s so goofy.

Thanks for the game(s) of Hide & Seek I got to play at church today, for the kids I played them with.

I thank you for Jeff and David and Mary and Julie Ann. Thank you for the joy of an evening with friends. Thank you for Jacob Bullock and for my sister. Thanks for getting to meet David’s friend Robert.

Thank you for the hours past midnight, though I should probably be sleeping.

God, you are faithful. This is just who you are; thank you so much.



Sunday, October 19, 2008


Well, Andy Whitman's just crazy about Tell Tale Signs.

You can listen to it here and decide for yourself.

Personally, I've been grateful for the abstraction of his lyrics recently. Sometimes it is very, very tiring to listen to music that is full of *meaning.* I'm grateful for the abstraction (to me, at least) of Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Sigur Rós and Dylan.

What do you think of Bob Dylan? Is he a hack who got lucky? Is he a genius? Somewhere in between? What's your take?

Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Chick Flick

A blast from the proverbial past:

Probably the film I have the single most positive associations with overall, whether the process of making it or the reaction or anywhere in between. Of course, if we'd known then what we know now (about the power of good preproduction work [i.e. Screenwriting, etc.]), then, in theory, the movie could have been a lot stronger.

But I think it all comes out pretty strong in the end anyway. And who knows? if we had thought things through ahead of time, we might never have gotten to see Matt Stone in a dress.

Episode Two of Wanted!

Jesse's search for his missing friend leads him into strange company...

Monday, October 13, 2008

For Commenter David:

A movie where I do use some Copland. Also my first collaboration with Jeremy.


It takes eight minutes for sunlight to reach the Earth. Eight wonderful, leisurely, glorious minutes.

Perhaps eight minutes should seem like a short amount of time for sunlight to reach our blue planet, considering the billions (or maybe just millions; I’m really not sure) of miles those luminous, friendly little particles have to travel to get here.

But to me it seems like a saunter.

It seems like sunlight is making a wonderful, sauntering statement about time and space and earth and about getting from here to there. What that statement is, I’m not sure. But this I know: I love to walk outside, tilt my head my up to catch the light and warmth spilling from that neighborly star (with my eyes closed, of course), and whisper, quietly, under my breath: eight minutes.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

"Joseph", "Pharaoh" and "Horseshoe" are all very difficult words for me to write out, for some reason. No matter how many times I write them.

Latest From The Kid's Club Production Machine...

Introducing the series Wanted! Here is episode one...

Thanks for watching!

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Live Music

It would be foolish not to head over to and listen to Over the Rhine do a live set from the Trumpet Child:

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Card House

This video has Bradley Pennington in it. And features a GarageBand soundtrack.

High Quality Entertainment

Feel free to hop on over to: (my You Tube page) anytime you're looking for some good movie viewing. Feel free to, you know, rate the videos and stuff. And comment on them... And watch them.


Good Whale

You will all be glad to know that I have uploaded a decent version of To Chase a Whale to You Tube, without all the snap, crackle and pop of my first effort.

I'd also just like to take a second and thank all of you who have been so supportive of my film career (too young to be called a 'career?') so far. God has blessed me very much through you, and I want you to know that I'm so grateful.

Okay, here's the movie:

You could watch this too, if you wanted to:

(It's my first project from my Art of Film Class [at the awesome NW Film Center!]; just an exercise to us aquatinted with the cameras we were using. I loved it though, so I'm sharing it with you.)

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Lucas In Love

This is the best Star Wars parody I've ever seen (and I've seen a few, lemme tell ya).

Ladies and gentlemen, Lucas In Love:

Friday, September 12, 2008

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Putting the music of Joel Clarkson to work...

This is for a sermon that our Pastor preached recently. The topic was "Submission", and, as you can see, the overall theme that we are going through, is relationships.

The song is "In the Shadow of the Mountain", by my good friend Joel Clarkson. You can hear that song and others, at his website.

Here is one from much earlier. This is one of the first sermon videos I did, and the theme was on the Fatherhood of God. The series was "Treasures of God." Once again, the music is by Joel Clarkson.

UPDATE: Here is a much better version of it then I had previously uploaded. The audio was off on the old one (annoying when timing of music is one of the only things you have going for your project; when the elements of your project are so sparse, that timing with music is one of the few you are relying on.)

Leah means "wild cow."*

I rejoice in this fact. I'm going to name a protagonist of mine Leah as soon as I can.
*According to my mom's "Bible Dictionary."

Installment Number Thirty Three...

"Indeed, nothing much else can ever happen if the 'stern' and the 'meek' fall into two mutually exclusive classes. And never forget that this is their natural condition. The man who combines both characters—the knight—is a work not of nature but of art; of that art which has human beings, instead of canvas or marble, for its medium."

—C. S. Lewis, in his essay "The Necessity of Chivalry"

( Living rightly does not come by accident, it must come from your hand. God, may I fully submit myself to be shaped in such a way.)

Installment Number Thirty Two...

"My function is to make whoever sees my films aware of his need to love and to give his love, and aware that beauty is summoning him."
— Andrei Tarkovsky

Today is September 11th

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Friday, August 29, 2008

God is faithful. Always.

Father, you love me and sing over me. I am the apple of your eye. You were(are) excited about the plan for me when you made me. You made me to be me.

You are always faithful, and you love me.


Monday, August 25, 2008

"Resplendent" is a word too, of course.
Fragile is a word that comes to mind when I think of Sufjan Stevens's music. Pretentious, too. And child-like in that way (and others: in his love for repetition and play). Oh, playful is one too.

"Shriven" is a word. So is "wend."

("Shriven means to absolve of a sin; "wend" means to make one's way to a decided location, but along a winding or roundabout route.)

Saturday, August 23, 2008

How Andrew Feels About the Same Three Dang Songs Begin Covered and Sung Over and Over and Over Again to Celebrate Jesus' Birth

This post will one day be written. It is about how I hate hearing the same songs over and over again each year. As if mankind stopped writing Christmas songs in 1962.

I hate, hate, hate, hate, hate, hate, hate, hate, hate, hate it.

To Chase a Whale

I have a new YouTube account. Here is my final project from this last term:


Is there a word for the little humming noise people make before they say "bye" on the phone?


By a stop-motion filmmaker known as PES:
My favorite songs on the new Fleet Foxes CD are tracks six and eight.


Tuesday, August 19, 2008

When you drag your walker, doesn't that kind of defeat the point?

Sunday, August 17, 2008

The worst name for a cemetery I have ever seen, is "Ocean View Cemeteries".

Monday, August 04, 2008

Animal Noises

This, from the Wikipedia definiton of "onomatopeia":

"...a word or a grouping of words that imitates the sound it is describing, suggesting its source object, such as "click," "bunk", "clang," "buzz," "bang," or animal noises such as "oink", "slurp", or "meow". The word is a synthesis of the Greek words όνομα (onoma, = "name") and ποιέω (poieō, = "I make" or "I create") thus it essentially means "name creation", although it makes more sense combining "name" and "I do", meaning it is named (and spelled) as it sounds (e.g. quack, bang, etc.)."

Question: What animal says slurp?

Monday, July 28, 2008


I thank you for who you are. Who you are is all light and joy and life. John 10:10 kind of life. Life to the full.

You have come that I may have life, and that to the full. That’s just like you, God. You love me and you love to bring me life.

You always pull through. You always come through in the end; you are my hero.

Thank you for my conversation last night on the phone; thank you that you allowed me to engage in honest communication with you and with the person I was talking with. Thank you for the last night that that happened, too.

Thank you, God for the Hold Steady. For familiar music.

Father, I thank you for comic strips and that I can cut them out. Thank you for the joy of sitting on the floor, scissors in hand, surrounded by different kinds of papers. For the joy of cutting and pasting, the tangibility of it!

God, well, you invented touch, didn’t you? I love it! I love getting to feel the keys under my fingers.

Too much praise? Too much thanksgiving? That can’t happen with you, God. You are worthy of endless praise and thanks, you light-and-life-and-joy God.

Father, I do thank you for light. Thank you for the light the was in my eyes yesterday evening. That was so nice.

I give myself over to you. I know that you love me. I know you are going to do what’s best for me.

A few more tangible things:

Thank you for blue and sky. And intoxicating color, God.

Thank you for the joy of writing out a script.

Thank you for bitter cold. And hot dogs that are too hot.

Thank you for my dear, beat-up shoes. (Oh, and for good punctuation.)

Thank you that my friend Ben thinks eloquence is okay/important too. (And, at the same time, for Paul’s foolishness and weakness he loves so much [your foolishness and weakness].)

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Note to Self:

I want to see Wall-E and The Dark Knight again before they leave theaters.

(These were both very good on the big screen. Plus I feel like both of these movies might have a lot to offer, and it's easier to experience a movie in that venue.)

Saturday, July 26, 2008

I am a very happy man!

Listen to Andrew Stanton on Fresh Air! I am!

Listen here:

Oh, read this too.

Ben Burt helped do the sound on Wall-E! WOW!

Nothing Is Random

    Nothing is random, nor will anything ever be, whether a long string of perfectly blue days that begin and end in golden dimness, the most seemingly chaotic political acts, the rise of a great city, the crystalline structure of a gem that has never seen the light, the distributions of fortune, what time the milkman gets up, the position of the electron, or the occurrence of one astonishingly frigid winter after another. Even electrons, supposedly the paragons of unpredictability, are tame and obsequious little creatures that rush around at the speed of light, going precisely where they are supposed to go. They make faint whistling sounds that when apprehended in varying combinations are as pleasant as the wind flying through a forest, and they do exactly as they are told. Of this, one can be certain.

   And yet there is a wonderful anarchy, in that the milkman chooses when to arise, the rat picks the tunnel into which he will dive when the subway comes rushing down the track from Borough Hall, and the snowflake will fall as it will. How can this be? If nothing is random, and everything is predetermined, how can there be free will? The answer to that is simple. Nothing is predetermined; it is determined, or was determined, or will be determined. No matter, it all happened at once, in less then an instant, and time was invented because we cannot comprehend in one glance the enormous and detailed canvas that we have been given—so we track it, in linear fashion, piece by piece. Time, however, can be easily overcome; not by chasing the light, but by standing back far enough to see it all at once. The universe is still and complete. Everything that ever was, is; everything that ever will be, is—and so on, in all possible combinations. Though in perceiving it we imagine that it is in motion, and unfinished, it is quite finished and quite astonishingly beautiful. In the end, or, rather, as things really are, any event, no matter how small, is intimately and sensibly tied to all others. All rivers run full to the sea; those who are apart are brought together; the lost ones are redeemed; the dead come back to life; the perfectly blue days that have begun and ended in golden dimness continue, immobile and accessible; and, when all is perceived in such a way as to obviate time, justice becomes apparent not as something that will be, but as something that is.

—From Mark Helprin’s Winter’s Tale

(I love this. If you try to get in a discussion with me about predestination, etc, I will bring it back to this. Time has already happened. Nothing is predetermined; nothing is random, because eternity happens outside of time. And this is all beyond us. Because we have no way to talk about anything without referencing time.

So I guess, what I’m most grateful for about this piece, is its attempts to crumple and throw away certain concepts we need to get used to the idea of letting go of [time, etc.]

This is kind of where I stand here. Anyway, I am delighted by this piece and by Mark Helprin and am very grateful.)

Thursday, July 17, 2008

When I'm looking at a computer screen, I forget who I am.

When I am reading a book, I remember who I am.

These are facts.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Ding! Ding!

Wall-E is going to be a very, very different kind of movie.

I made very a happy noises (see above) when I read this (from this quotation of Josh Hurst's thoughts on Jeff Overstreet's blog):
But even more than a great work of sci-fi, this is a great work of cinema. WALL•E is Pixar’s boldest, bravest film yet, opening with half an hour in which no dialogue occurs. Much of the story is told, then, only through images, and in this regard, it’s the most sophisticated and subtle film Pixar has yet made. There are moments of inspired visual humor, and of poignant visual metaphors. There are small gestures and little moments that say more than a script ever could. It’s so gloriously evocative, surely it deserves to be called poetry.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Monday, June 23, 2008

My Dad Is a Really Good Writer

My Dad (who has a blog!) is a really good writer, and he has (gasp!) just recently posted two (two!) new posts on his blog; Children of the Burning Heart.

Click here to read his thoughts on Father's Day in: Wooly Mammoth on the Grill

And here to read his reflections on baseball: Red Stitching

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

A Pin from VBS

This is still true, by the way. It was true in the third grade, and it's still true now.


My friend and fellow blogger, Eucharisto, has a great quote up on his blog from one of my favorite artists.

Sufjan Stevens' thoughts on "Being born again."


Oh, and while we're on the subject, Eucharisto (who is a FANTASTIC musician) also has some great original music online. You can listen to it here. (And here.)

And if you want to see some of his music in action in some of my movies (well, just one of my movies, really). Click here.

Garfield Minus Garfield

Dublin native, Dan Walsh has played with the comic strip "Garfield" by removing it's main character, leaving Jon (even more) alone. The results are... well, see for yourself:

Aren't these hilarious? Find more strips at:

Washington Post Article

In gardens they perish.

She seemed to dislike the disequilibrium of counterpoising a roomful of light against a worldful of darkness.

Sunday, June 15, 2008


"Homecoming" was a good episode.

It made me smile twice. I don't remember the first time, but the second time was when they were setting up sentries around the camp. People guarding camps of plane crash victims from mysterious and bad island people is cool.

Also the backstory totally related with the main story, which was great. I hate it when it seems like the backstory is thrown in just randomly. And it was all revealed at just the right times, which is good. Learning where a little of where Charlie's desire to protect Claire comes from was good and very effective. I think I even said (at least thought) "poor Charley" at the end. According to my screenwriting teacher the purpose of screenwriting is to elicit an emotional response from the reader/veiwer. I don't know whether or not I agree with that (this would be a good discussion sometime), but at any rate the show got one from me (I identify with Charley and his desire to have someone to look after), and that means something at least. So, good job Lost screenwriters. I just wish I felt like the characters were really interacting and not just occasionally conversing as a (crazy, insane, mixed up, mysterious, exciting) plot drags them forward. I wish I felt like the show was living up to it potential in all areas and not just those plot and individual characters (which they're doing a great job with; I just want to see some more actual interaction going on).


Oh, one of the other times that made me smile with excitement was when they were asking for others to help and it happened that they asked Sawyer, and then Kate joined in also. Then they had all their strongest characters together (with guns!) trying to trap Ethan. I thought "finally! They're starting to really use the characters they've been developing!" Of course, it didn't turn out to be that strong of an interaction (the scene turned out differently, good, but differently), but it was a nice promise, a good moment, anyway.

I should mention too another thing about the guns. I was excited too about the guns being introduced because it could mean that the show, by giving us a microcosm of a society to look at, can examine, explore and play with societal structures and issues. The one at the moment being, "What happens when sophisticated weapons are introduced into a society?" Lost touches on this sometimes. I hope they do it more.

Anyway, thank you writers. I'm going to move on to episode 16 now.

I really liked Sawyer's backstory episode, by the way. I think it was my favorite so far.

Oh, and I really like, um the bald guy who throws knives at things. John, that's right, John, um.. Locke! Of course, a great name. Anyway, he's a great character, he's a leader on the island, but you're constantly guessing what he's up to and what's going on inside him. Also I like what they're dong with Boone's character. He's developing! Which is good, and is more than I can say for, say... certain doctors on the island (and their crushes).

Friday, June 06, 2008

Friday, May 30, 2008

I Am Going to Miss My Friends

I'm going to miss my friends at camp so much this summer. I am going to miss staff meetings and yelling at people to be quite because my sister is talking.

I am going to miss Joe Fahlman talking too loud about the Bible and all-staff singing times in the dark.

I am going to miss silent retreats with my friend Ben.

I am going to miss short, knowing conversations with Blueberry. I am going to miss the resounding chorus of praise my body sends up at night when I finally get to go to sleep. I am going to miss investing in the other staff members, especially the new ones (helping make them feel welcomed and loved).

I am going to miss running my heart out during darebase and the great tennis ball caper.

I am going to miss all the people you meet just by walking from one place to the other. Such beautiful, wonderful people.

I will miss my sister, and I will miss my brother.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

And to Mr. Chesterton, a very Happy Birthday

Jeffrey Overstreet is noting the birthday of one of my favorite people (follow the link! there are great quotes!). G. K. Chesteron was a man who was alive and always supremely ecstatic to be so. I'm grateful to him for (among many, many other things) the joy and graditude he showed and lived out in his life and in his writings.

Happy Birthday, G. K. I thank God for you.

"It is possible that God says every morning, 'Do it again' to the sun; and every evening, 'Do it again' to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them."

— G. K. Chesterton

In Philip Yancey's Soul Survivor there is a chapter on G. K. Chesterton as is the case as well with Frederick Buechner's Speak What We Feel. Please read!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Birds of Paradise OR What Men Go Through

More Planet Earth fun (I found this at the same time as the last one; I just didn't want to bombard you with too many).

Let no one make the claim that being a man is easy.

Monday, May 26, 2008

The Road

This movie, just got done filming in Portland (just down the road from me). About a year or so ago Morgan Freeman was down the street making a film and now this. Our local seminary has become something of a hub for Hollywood traffic, it would seem. Cormac McCarthy is very dark (from what I hear), so I might not end up seeing it, but I enjoyed reading the article none-the-less. I am consistently impressed by Viggo Mortensen's attitude and comments toward other people (from reading this and watching the behind the scenes documentaries for The Lord of the Rings). He seems almost Christ-like to me, though I know he's not a Christian. I also liked reading about the little boy who will be playing Viggo's son. It looks like the movie is going to look nice too (nice in a post-apocalyptic sort of way).

Has anyone seen No Country for Old Men (the same author of The Road)? Is it worth wading through the darkness? I would love to see the good craftsmanship that (I hear) is there (plus I want to see more Coen Brother's movies and get a better feel for them; this is in part because I feel the need to learn better the language of film and also just because I'd like to see more well-made films); I'm just not sure if it's worth it. Oh well, we'll see.

Oh, I did not mention that I would like to read the book The Road. But I do.

For some reason the previous sentence made me think of Housekeeping, which I am reading right now, by Marilynne Robinson. I should tell you that it is lovely. Her words strung together are so lovely. If, while I am reading it next time, I come upon such a well-strung sentence, I will be sure to put it up on this blog, so that you can see what I mean. Her style is also crisp and clean and fits the ice and snow of the landscape she writes about here.

Oh, and if you haven't read Marilynne Robinson's Gilead, you are missing out on a wonderful experience, on much sunlit beauty. Thank you, Father for that book.

Remember (Grateful Tuesdays #25)

Dear Heavenly Father,

Our Father in Heaven. Our Father. The Father of us, your bride. Father, down-on-your-knees, giving horsey-back rides, intimately involved with us, Immanuel. You love me, Father. You love me, God. And I thank you for that.

You love me through all of who I am. And, maybe more to the point, the all-that-I-am-not that clutters things up. To be honest, God, I don't have a really firm grasp on who I am these days. I'd like to see myself a little clearer, bring myself into sharp focus.

Or, much more better (this being said in a rough, British accent), I would love to know that you see me. That's why I'm doing all this you know. All this living and stuff. I think. I hope. Like I said, I'm loosing track of myself a little these days.

But no matter, let us take some time to redirect that heart of ours.

Father, Daddy, thank you for... little things. For details, Father. Do you care about these things? I have to believe that you do. After all, you are the same God who created the sub-atomic particle, right? And the little burst of emotion that comes on us in moments. Like a wave at an airport or seeing how a gift is wrapped.

So I have to believe that you do. (I will also share with you that I think I would go crazy if I feel that these little things could not be honored, if you and us all had better things to do with our time.)

Mmm. But don't you make a fantastic big picture as well? How beautiful your stars are, Father. I do love them so. (I'm tempted to ask that you allow me to see them better somehow, but I will instead turn my thoughts to how you have shown your love to me on nights where they all blaze out in front of me! Where it feels that the weight of their glory, their song could crush me! could pull you in.) What grace you show me Father, with your love song, with this planet, with human interaction, with a well-crafted television show or a... scent in the air and the feel of it all. You love me, God. That's painted everywhere, plain to see.

Ah, but am I going numb? This would be sad to see, wouldn't it, God? Sad for my ears to go deaf to your music or to (God, please keep!) attribute these notes to someone else. Or me. Or no one. (God keep me.)

But these kinds of things don't happen. I mean that, my worst fears don't come true. They just don't. You steer and craft and protect and you guide. I give myself to you, and know that you're going to use me to your best. And you know that's what I want. You are my Father, and you never tire of Fathering me, never fail. Always do, guide and helm. That's you, God. That's what you're like. You love me deeply.

So I need Fathering in many more areas. I do I do. But you'll do this; thank you, God.

Thank you for Bruce Springsteen, Father. Thank you for his passion. Thank you that yours beats his by a long stretch.

Thank you for my circular (play) glasses. Thank you that they look so funny and help me not to take myself as seriously.

Oh! Thank you for Leif Enger, Father! And his so well-constructed sentences.

Ooh, and for Derek Webb, Father, thank you for him. He's got some issues, doesn't he, Father? Some anger, I think? But I think I hear so much of the Gospel in his music. You know, of restoration and that things need restoring in the first place. Thank you for people who mourn the things that are not right and lead me to the same. Thank you for the Queen of Arts and England and how I feel she mourns for things (fallen birds, dying things, wrong relationships) that are not right. That she feels deeply.

I thank you, God, in general for people who feel deeply. May I feel deeply; may I smell deeply and hear deeply and see truly. And may I know you.

Thank you for loving me. And holding me (I know you have; you love me more deeply than anyone ever has or will).

In Jesus' Name,


Wednesday, May 21, 2008

My great-grandfather was a very cool man...

I was going through some photos recently and thought I'd share this one with you, so you could see some of the people that contributed to my gene pool. Great Papa was very cool.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Great White Sharks Are Huge! This is a fantastic video!

Planet Earth rocks my world.

To Do

▪ email Randy
▪ communicate with the phobester about coming up on the 9th of May to use the duper to make 70 copies of the Mother's Day video to hand out to moms on Mother's Day
▪ put this to do list on the web so as to share my life with my loyal blog readers
▪ Give a shout out to pastor Jelani who I met at the amazing Cajun dinner his dad's church put on for us WorldView-ians!
▪ vacuum lounge
▪ I did the laundry! yes!
▪ email Aron about the fact that there are no changes to the baseball schedule.
▪ look at Timber's schedule and see if we want to work any of those games.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Satan attacks transitions.

What do you think of that? Do you think that's true? It's a thought that's been rolling around in my head recently, but I have absolutely no biblical backup for it. But it seems true to me. Plus I read an article recently about "the joint" (in architecture), and how holy it is. Which, something holy would be something Satan would attack. I need to read the article again (or, actually all the way through).

Sunday, March 30, 2008

I Am Encouraged

I am encouraged by the number of hawks there are still in the world. I've just seen a lot of them recently, and been kind of surprised by that and very pleased. I think from all the nature videos I watched when I was little, I thought that all the good things were gone. But they're not! And that's cool.*

I am also comforted by the fact that sunlight is blue. And, on a similar note: that sunlight takes eight minutes to reach the earth. For some reason I find that fact very comforting as I stand with the sun on my face. It took eight, whole, leisurely minutes to get here, I think. I think the light is sauntering.

*And I even got to see a hawk up close the other day at Mt. Tabor park. It was sitting on a light pole, and I climbed up the fence as much as I dared to get close to it. It was actually pretty scary to be that close to a bird like that. But it was wonderful.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Reachin' Down (Grateful Tuesdays #24)

Dear Heavenly Father,
Thank you for my wonderful trip to the dentist's today. Thank you for my Dad and for Sigor Ros and that my Dad wants to listen and is willing to listen to music that I choose. That he's curious to know what I like and why I like it. Thank you for the joy of being known and having a good Father. Even though, of course, being known by a human is incomplete (a human can't know me fully), and my father can't be fully what my Heavenly Father is (he can't be with me always, support, encourage, affirm always). But you, Father, have blessed me with a father who goes as far as he can go to fill that picture. My father hasn't left my picture of my Heavenly Father wanting. Thank you so much for that, God. I know that this is not typical, and I know that it's not by his effort only, so I sit here, silent and in gratitude.
I'm happy that my dentist was so happy with my teeth. Golly, he and his assistant were nice. Thank you also for the little bird with the red on his head that I could see outside the window at the office. I'm also glad the T.V. was off eventually.
Whefw! Television and noise and my dad listening to the radio and seeing each other and not seeing each other and why!
God! You are amazing! The complexity of Human existence is mind-blowing! It's beautiful! It's terrifying and heartbreaking and lonely and sad and wonderful.
Thank you for my shoes. I like the look of them, and they are hugging my feet. Thank you for my life-changing hoodie and, more to the meaning, for the loving uncle, aunt and cousins they came from.
Thank you for flavor. I can taste coffee and chocolate, and I can taste them even now, and I know that there is a God. A you.
There is a "you". (Now that I think about it.) There is a person to whom we can make our whole lives a "hey you!" Someone to whom we can direct that. There is someone who I can point my life at, who will notice me.
WHO. CREATED. ME. TO BE NOTICED! And I know, God, that as my other friends hear me pray this, they are not quite tracking with what I'm saying. Save me from the distorted version of being noticed. May I live for you.
You are lovely, God. And you love me, and I'm so grateful for you.

Monday, March 03, 2008

His banner...

My Creator loves me.

My God loves me.

My Lord and Master loves me.

YAHWEH, the Great I Am That I Am, loves me, deeply.

My Lover, the One who knows me deeper than anyone else, loves me.

My Father loves me.

I am loved.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Has anyone seen my copy of G. K. Chesterton's Orthodoxy?

I've misplaced my copy of Orthodoxy, and I can't seem to find it anywhere. The last time I saw it for sure was this Summer at camp. I think.

Anyway, let me know if you run across it. I'd really like to be able to browse through it again.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Trailer II

I forgot to show this to you guys. My friend Jeremy made it just a few days ago.

Let me know what you think! (For the record, my favorite parts are the two "spinning" shots toward the end. You'll see what I mean.)

Stay tuned for a trailer for season two...

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Zion (Grateful Tuesdays # 23)

Dear God,

Thank you for meeting me yesterday. I expressed my discouragement to you very clearly writing to you yesterday. Thank you for the beautiful passage of Scripture I read yesterday and for the host of thousands upon thousands of angel we have come to. For the joy of being at the foot of Mt. Zion.

Thank you for sending those little ones to hug me yesterday. Thank you that Callie baked me cookies. And for the delicious soup I got to eat because the other soup ran out.

Thank you for the great time of writing I got to have yesterday while monitoring babies. Thank you that I get to make these Kid’s Club videos and that I get to do what I love.

Thank you so much for my beautiful, encouraging, fun conversation with the Queen, yesterday. Thank you for the joy of getting to experience her.

Thank you so much for college group yesterday, God! God, I’ve never experience a college group like that before, there was so much singing and laughter and joy. It was very much a gift from you.

Thank you for my friends Josh and Erin and their willingness to stay behind last night and help with filming.

God, yesterday was such a mountaintop experience; as I come down from the mountain, Father, it’s my prayer that I would thank you, not only when things are obviously well, but also when there are a few more doubts in my mind and when things are a bit more muddled and confusing and discouraging. Please keep a song of your love on my lips throughout.

In Jesus’ name I pray,


Friday, January 11, 2008

The Ultimate Sci Fi/ Fantasy Movie Trailer

For the record, my favorite part of this trailer is the "two daughters of Eve" part. But the whole thing is very funny and well put-together.

Installment Thirty...

“When it comes to wanting what’s real
There’s no such thing as greed.”

-Over the Rhine, "I Don't Wanna Waste Your Time"

Tuesday, January 08, 2008


"We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain, where Jesus, who went before us, has entered on our behalf."

(From the sixth chapter of Hebrews.)

Dear All,

Please pray for me as I am writing.

Thank you.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Over Berlin (Grateful Tuesdays #22)

Dear Heavenly Father,

I’m so grateful that I’m human, God! Even with all its messiness, being human is such an honor and such a joy. Your word says that angels marvel at the kinds of things that I get to experience every day.

I get to experience your grace, God. That’s probably the thing the passage I have in mind is referring to the most. Your grace is marvelous, God. But I know I don’t take it in enough. I don’t really see it, see it for what it is.

I do want to marvel at your grace, God. At what you’ve done and who you are.

Thank you for the ability to feel. I’m sick right now, God, and I don’t really like being sick more than any other human being, but I’m grateful. I’m grateful to be able to feel and because if I’m sick I know I’m alive.

Alive. What a word, God. Now, that’s a word I’d like to comprehend fully. (It makes me think of U2, as do most things, I guess.)

I like the song “All Because Of You”, because it’s a song about a man joyful (and joyful is an understatement) to be alive, and he credits all of it to you. I like to see that. It feels right.

Cause you’ve done so much, God! You’ve filled this world with color and explosions of life and light! You made love and human emotion. Air and dirt and the molecules and sub-molecules (if there are such things) and atoms that go into them! You’ve filled man’s heart with song! And given us things to taste and tongues to taste them with.

You are not a stingy, brown and grey God. You delight in a life fully lived. You’ve caused me to dare to think that I won’t spend eternity hitting my head against a wall over all my mistakes but will instead rejoice in what you were able to do through me. You even encourage me to believe that one day I’ll be further along the road you have me on, the road of looking like you, than I am now. That you’ll stay faithful to me. You love me more than I’ll ever know.

Thank you for being faithful to me, God. Thank you for your faithfulness on the trip I just took to Tennessee and how you provided lots of time for me and my friend to be with each other. Thank you for what a wonderful time I had with that whole, wonderful family. And also for the other people I got to see while I was there.

God, you’re so faithful. Some things I’ve had a wrong attitude about, you’re completely turned me around on. Of course, I still need to count on you for the rest.

Thank you for your forgiveness. Over my worrying and manipulating and whatever else I do when I let my vision slip and take my eyes off of you, my loving Creator.

You love me. You love me; you love me. I long to live in your love, to live the full, sun-shining radiance of your love. Because God, I’ve been starving out in the spiritual gutter. I need your love; I fully confess that. I am completely empty without you. Even more so that I was before, I think. Because now I have totally died to my old self and have been raised in you. My identity is now found totally in you; that doesn’t leave much room for a “me” without “you”. Not that I’d even want that anyway. I want you, God. Nothing else will do. Please visit me with your self; make your home in me, I pray.

In Jesus’ name,


Thursday, January 03, 2008

Thinking Out Loud

Scattered Thoughts On Insecurities

Do you think the image of Christ is reflected in someone who has insecurities? Or, to phrase it a little more accurately, do you think Christ is reflected in someone's insecurities? Do those insecurities mar or make clearer the image of Christ in that believer?

Where do insecurities come from? What fosters their growth and helps them to take root in a person? in me?

Why do you think God has taken care to surround me with people who happen to be very secure in who they are?

What effect do insecurities have on a person and that person's friends?

Well, I think for me, having an insecurity in an area – say, how loved and affirmed you feel as a person – affects how I interact with people. If I'm looking to my friends to affirm who I am, I'll get upset or jealous when they do something without me. I'll feel like their desire to be with each other is a statement against me, rather than the perfectly innocent thing it is.

This then hurts me, my friends and our relationship. If I have to be included in everything my friends do... well that just gets ridiculous. And my friends are never going to be perfect at making me feel good about myself, at making me feel accepted and wanted all the time.

Yet, this is how I want to feel! I want to feel like everybody loves me. The one thing I want most is love and approval.

The funny thing is, according to how I understand my spirituality, this is how I am supposed to feel. I am supposed to look for love, approval, companionship, acceptance, a sense of belonging – all these things, outside myself. Something, someone was/is supposed to be pouring all this information into me. To be wrapping their arms around me.

I remember the Summer of '06 (my second year of counseling at Trout Creek Bible Camp) being absolutely tortured, just torn apart, by this other counselor who never did a thing to me, said nothing but anything nice to me. He just was very, very comfortable with his identity. Nothing could make him feel less than what he believed himself to be. It was absolutely infuriating.

No matter what his campers told him or how disrespectful they were to him, or what people said or teased him about (if anyone actually did tease him – I think I'm making that up), he would just let it roll off his back, laugh and jump over tables and things, since that's the kind of thing he was wont to do.

Thankfully, we are good friends now (by the grace of God). Mostly because, my next Summer back at camp, I had a different job and was a little more secure in who I was, myself. Thank God that he keeps on working on us, on me.