Friday, July 30, 2010

Not letting go...

If you are a fan of LOST (and were all the way to the end), you know the significance of the post's title. I'm looking forward to the final DVD release on August 24, which will include a never-seen epilogue. In the meantime, here's a newly-released deleted scene from the finale. Enjoy:

Thursday, July 29, 2010


Tonight I saw a movie for the second time at the theatre. I only do this in two situations: either I want to go with a friend who has not seen the movie (and it's a good one), or it is so rich and deep that it needs a second viewing to fully absorb it. Inception (the link is to the youtube trailer) qualified on both fronts.

Dreams have always been a fascinating subject to me. They have played a key role over the years in God's revelation (for example, Daniel's interpretation of Nebuchadnezzar's dreams), and they have an awful lot to say about what's really going on in our minds. My favorite horror movie is Nightmare on Elm Street, because it isn't just a slasher movie but is based on the idea of dreams becoming real...and deadly.

In Inception, dreams are the medium for thought theft, manipulation, and, yes, the deep problems of the main character, portrayed by Leonardo DiCaprio. It is another tremendous performance on his part, and he has become one of my favorite actors. In an upcoming blog post I'll discuss his performance in Blood Diamond, and how that movie relates to the lesson God taught me in Africa earlier this month.

Bottom line: Inception is one of my favorite movies has suspense, action, humor, and thought-provoking ideas. If you like all that, see it!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Five flavors?

I have learned a couple of things since Thursday that deserve a quick mention before getting my last night of sleep this weekend.

1) Macy, Haley, and Brooke are GOOD at digging up fun things to do. Over the last two days in L.A. we have been places I didn't know much about and had a blast there. And they have found some good food.

2) Speaking of which, I had one of my best dinners in a long time at Ketchup on Sunset Blvd. My fried chicken cut into strips over seasoned mashed potatoes was awesome. And the atmosphere was fun.

3) As you can see in this picture, they serve five different kinds of ketchup. They all were pretty good, except, no I couldn't find anything that chocolate ketchup goes well with. I'm sure there's something.

Great trip, great evening!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

No, I'm FOUR...a birthday story

The little boy was excited about his birthday party...but also confused. He knew that he was about to hit a major milestone -- five. years. old. But it wasn't his birthday yet. It was Sunday, and he had three days to wait. But for some reason, there were the presents. (Would he get that Superman suit he wanted?) There were the kids from his neighborhood. And there was the cake. With five candles.

As the cameras rolled (yes, he had one of those fathers), his parents tried over and over to get him to hold up five fingers. After all, this video record of his fifth birthday would be preserved for a long time, and when you're five, you hold up five fingers. But the little boy was stubborn, and they could not make him do it. "How old are you?" "Four" came the answer...over and over and over. Why the early birthday party? Why would his family do this to such a sweet little boy?

Well, he was about to get an amazing birthday present -- one that required his mother to miss being home for his birthday. For you see, his mother was checking into the hospital the next day to have a baby. A baby sister, who would be born the day before he turned five, and the best birthday present ever. A present that would multiply into another present 26 years later, and still be giving until the most current anniversary of that date...which happens to be today.

Yes, I was that stubborn little boy, and I haven't changed much...I'm still like that And the present was my youngest sister Kristy.

Happy birthday, sis!

Monday, July 19, 2010

When you can actually SEE God working

For most of my life, seeing God's hand has involved 20-20 hindsight. You know, living day after day...praying and spending time seeking him...doing my best to "love God, love people, and try not to do anything stupid". Usually, I can look back on things and see how God was working on things that I couldn't imagine. But last night, for the second time in less than a month, I could actually (almost literally) see his hand. Here's how:

I just got back from an amazing, life-changing time in Africa. (I will be posting more about that trip later, so get was an amazing journey.) During that time, we encountered a community in and around the dumps of a major African city...please check out this amazing write-up on this East African community from my good friend Tamara. There I could see God working to draw me into a passion for his work there. How he did is another subject for another blog.

So...last night. I arrived at our church's monthly Board of Stewards meeting, after almost blowing it off to go to a movie with my sister's family. Yeah, I came that close to missing what the Lord had for me. All the reports last nights were about missions, and then our senior pastor stood up for his remarks. Paraphrasing, he said that in 2011 God wanted us to find one community in town to that man would say was impossible, so that God would get all the glory. And then he said that we needed to find the same opportunity in some other part of the world. Yeah, he did. He really said that. Or, in the words of Ricky Bobby, "That just happened!"

I was sitting there shaking and fighting back tears...I felt as if God were speaking directly to me: "Donnie, you've got to share your vision for East Africa, to see whether this is where he wants your church to target." So before the meeting was over, I found myself addressing the whole Board about how God is working there and wants to transform that community.

Ok, just so my friends at Frazer know, I am not saying that this is it for my church...there are alot of hurting people in the world and God may point our leadership to a different opportunity. But it is not a coincidence that I return from our trip and find a home church that is looking to change a community somewhere. Even if he chooses another place, I saw him put me exactly where he wanted me at ther exact right time.

I am convinced more than ever that he is going to raise up whatever is needed to accomplish his will in this place that has captured my heart.

Here we go...

Hey everyone! (Well, everyone is probably a very small group at this point....but that's ok.)

After years for "blogging" through the use of facebook Notes or (remember this??) myspace, I have finally decided to set up an actual blog site. Probably one of the biggest reasons is my recent experience in Africa and realizing I might actually have something to say that others might be interested in. (Of course, you're the judge on that!)

So, here we go. I'm starting with this one, and hope to post an actual blog on a subject very soon. It won't be every day or maybe even every week. I plan to post when there's something that I think would be fun, interesting, or informative.

Talk to you soon...promise!