Archive for December, 2007

I posted to this week’s Christian Carnival being hosted by Thinking Christian.

I submitted my post about Love Coming to Town from this past Sunday’s message. Stop by and check out the other great posts!

The wait is finally over! I have accepted a position in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  Coats, Gloves, and Scarves might be good too since we’ll be moving to the arctic tundra in the middle of winter.  We are very excited about the opportunity that has been presented for us to make this transition at this point in our lives. 

We will be joining one of our dear friends (she is actually the one who introduced Christy and I), while pursuing excellent professional opportunities. 

Beginning January 7, I will be a Volunteer Coordinator in one of the middle schools in the Minneapolis Public School system.  This is actually a position I found through the Americorps which I will be joining as part of the position.  In a nutshell, by job will be to assist the school in developing a volunteer infrastructure, recruiting, training and supporting volunteers, and integrating the community into the school.  I will also provide service learning and leadership development opportunities for the students!

The most exciting aspect of this position and the particular school that I’ll be working at is that the student population is predominantly Somalian. Minneapolis has a large Somali and Hmong refugee population.  You probably are aware of my passion for Africa and our desire to some day be working overseas, this is an excellent opportunity to be working with and supporting Somalian individuals who are trying to put their life together after fleeing terrible violence.

As I write this little note, Christy is still trying to obtain employment, but as an RN we are highly optimistic that she’ll be offered something soon! We are also still trying to nail down housing and other similar arrangements.  So your continued prayer in that area would be greatly appreciated.  Our current plan is to leave Anderson on January 3rd. 

If you can’t tell we are excited, but we are also saddened as we prepare to leave our many friends and our families.  We continue to trust that God has amazing things in store for our lives and hope to stay in contact with you, so please stay in contact with us! 

If ever your path should wander to Minnesota, you will have a welcome mat at your feet and a warm place to sleep!

This is an e-mail I sent to friends, family, and colleagues and now I’m sharing with you my blog friends!

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I’ve gathered quite a collection of links to articles I want to read in my inbox.  Many look really good, I just need the time to sort through them.  Below are some of them.  I don’t want to turn this thing into a complete spam machine so I’ll make it more like an annotated bibliography from school days!

Automatic Bill Payments – Popular and risky! In this Christian Science Monitor article they highlight 4 risks to using Automatic Bill Payment.  One that probably does happen on some of my bills is Letting Overcharges Slip. I don’t carefully monitor our Sprint bill and it fluctuates a little each month!

Is Your Image at Work Killing Your Career? Free Money Finance looks at research that shows that your physical image may be negatively impacting your career.  Its interesting, is it true?

Ideas for Leftover Turkey Consumerist links to 10 Tasty Ideas for Leftover Turkey.  We froze some of the turkey from our first Thanksgiving event with the in-laws.  So I might thaw it out and try one!

5 Steps to Power Up Your Productivity is a list of simple ways to boost productivity posted at Dumb Little Man.

Helpful Website for Student Loan Borrowers Consumerist provides a link to information for anyone who has student loans (which is almost everyone!)

8 Ways to Get Work Through LinkedIn Freelance Switch provides 8 tips to make the business social-networking site more effective for freelancers (and probably everyone!). Most are basic, but we often forget the most basic. Visit my profile.

5 Ways to Get Your Dream Job Dumb Little Man’s post jumped out at me because I want my dream job! It provides 5 great ideas on how to improve your “total package.”  I would agree with all of them!

Microplace – Invest Wisely. End Poverty. Written by a friend, this is a well sourced post about microfinance and how you and I can literally invest to end poverty.

Cheap Healthy Good Get Rich Slowly looks at another frugal blog called Cheap Healthy Good.  The author writes daily about how to get the best food with the least amount of money! Always a good idea!

Product (RED) World AIDS Day Newsletter (RED) has given over $50 million to the Global Fund to Fight HIV/AIDS. Learn about how your Product (RED) can make a difference and see a new line-up of products. I have a shirt, knit hat, and some other odds and ends.  This has been a huge marketing success for this issue.

Maybe this will free up my inbox a little so I can actually post some substantive posts from other blogs that I’ve found, or maybe I’ll be back again with another links roundup!

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When I first moved to Indiana in 2004 I was looking for ways to stay involved in the international issues that had grabbed my heart.  In an interesting process of asking around to different national organizations I stumbled upon a local grassroots group called RESULTS.  The first monthly meeting I attended was held at Mo & Johnny’s in Broadripple.

RESULTS is mostly a grassroots advocacy organization. Each month concerned citizens gather to discuss and take action on a specific international issue.  Most recently groups have been discussing and acting on the Farm Bill and TB-related legislation.  It is pretty simple, devote one night a month to writing a member of Congress or a Letter to the Editor.  Christy and I both have had letters published in the Indy Star.

We are trying  to revitalize the Indianapolis group.  We are looking for people who are willing to spend a few hours that could have a dramatic impact on our global neighbors.  Please consider attending an informational meeting:

Monday, December 17th
Old Bethel United Methodist Church, Indianapolis
7995 E. 21st St.
6:30-8:30 p.m.

I am looking for people who are passionate about making the difference in the world they’ve always dreamed of making; passionate about overcoming the cynicism and despair that surrounds us and becoming a beacon of hope in their community and world; and passionate about writing a new chapter in their life, one of civic courage. None of this is possible, however, without a transformation from “I can’t make a difference” to “I can,” from “I can’t fight City Hall” to “I am City Hall.” At its best, that is what RESULTS is about, civic transformation so individuals can work together to make a real difference . . .           — Sam Daley-Harris, Founder of RESULTS

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I assume that most people who are looking at this blog right now are Perspectives alumni. So I challenge each of you to invite 5 people to learn more about Perspectives. It is probably safe to assume that we all know 5 people whose life could be turned upside down or maybe even sideways by this course.

We who have completed it, know the value it has had for us. It is that story that could encourage others to follow our lead. I know that it provided great fodder for discussion between my wife and I, helping us grow closer to each other and gaining a better perspective on the future God has in store for us.

Having seen some of the planning process, I now understand why the course is $200 per person. The planning committee is challenged with bringing the best and most dynamic speakers, while providing the course at the lowest possible cost per person. This year’s lineup looks amazing and the $200 cost is a bargain (remember it is only $13 a week and includes the books!). This can become quite costly for a couple who wants to attend together. Did you know that its possible to provide scholarships for people who don’t have other resources but want to attend. This is where you can step in! We as alumni and friends can provide scholarships for others to attend at reduced cost! Please contact Diane if you are interested in giving the gift of Perspectives!

What Others are Saying

The Perspectives course is without question the single most valuable and life-changing series of studies I have ever taken. The blend of information, speakers, strategy, and vision are a must, both for those new to missions and those who have served for many years.
Sandra Winter, Director of Missions, Word of Grace, Mesa, Arizona

Perspectives gives people an opportunity to be exposed to the faith stretching challenge of world missions from the first hand experience of those God is using on the field. I heartily endorse this effort.
Bill Bright, Late founder of Campus Crusade for Christ

[Perspectives is a] great way to take significant, proactive steps in developing faith and goals as Christians. 2007 Anderson Student.

We don’t celebrate a traditional advent at The Bridge.  In the last three years that I’ve attended (and its existed) this has made for a different holiday season than I’m used to.  This week Chris’s message was excellent and Bono even paid a short visit!

I must say it was a little interesting using Jonah as the basis for the Christmas story, but it tied in very nicely. The main point of the message was that we should love people rather than judging or condemning them.

Jonah didn’t like the Ninevites and knew deep down that if he presented the message of salvation to them that they would probably be saved.  This happened in Jonah 3:10 “… He [God] had compassion…” Jonah’s plea in Jonah 4:2 is almost funny but sad,  Jonah was so angry about God’s compassion for the heathen! “I knew that you are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity.”

God does not want His people walking around the earth holding His love inside their hearts or in some niche group and condemning everyone else.  Look what happened to Jonah when he tried.  Matthew 5:43 commands us to love our enemy and pray for those who persecute us.  That definitely isn’t an easy task and it should be done in a healthy and Spirit-filled way.

Finally from Hosea 6:6 we learn what God wants from us:

I want you to show love,
not offer sacrifices.
I want you to know me
more than I want burnt offerings.

Rather than focusing our energy and time on hatred and condemnation, God calls us to be a people of mercy and compassion. (excerpted from this week’s discussion guide)

Application

Chris made a point at the beginning to say that we are often more charitable this time of year, than during the other 11 months.  He clarified that God wants us to live with love 24/7 all year long.

Make a list of people or situations that you need to let go of and focus more on loving those people instead of harboring ill feelings or judgement. Pray for God to help you to do this.

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I still can’t believe its December already! This year has gone by so fast.  Here are the highlights from this and last November (and some from October since I forgot to do this then).

Last Year It is interesting to look back at these posts and see how my writing and this blog overall has developed.

This Year