Sunday, March 29, 2015

Re-entering Jerusalem with Jesus for the First Time, or, I Think I Would Fall Off My Donkey

So today is Palm Sunday, or Passion Sunday, depending on which particular denominational tradition you come from. This morning while I was worshiping with my faith community, I came to the conclusion that this first day of Holy Week is one that just fundamentally feels off, and I think it's for a very good reason. I saw it stated well this morning on Twitter:

Chris Balding's tweet resonated with me because it's a good summation of what my experience of Palm Sunday has been. We start off shouting and happy; Jesus has come into Jerusalem, riding on a donkey! He is regarded as the King of Kings and the Messiah! We can honor him with palm fronds and lay our cloaks on the dirty ground for him to walk on. But before we leave church, we are the ones who are shouting for him to be crucified.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Headed Down to San Antonio for #ADDD15 and the AED Board Meeting

Last weekend, there was not post on my blog. If any of you, dear readers, were crestfallen, I heartily apologize. But the reason that I did not post was because I was on a plane, heading to San Antonio to hang out with a bunch of deacons!

Some of the incoming board members and new board officers
at a celebration of ministry Saturday night

Saturday, March 14, 2015

I'm a Dreamer, I'm a Leaner, I'm a Flying Lemur... Steve Miller I Am Not

Those of you, dear readers, who know me in person (and maybe some of you who I have only connected with online have inferred this; I shouldn't presume so much) will know that I have a tendency to live in my head. I think about things. A lot. A large reason why my wife and I got hitched was because we help to keep each other grounded, and I think she may keep me more grounded than I do her.

But nevertheless, the point of this is that I'm in my head a lot. I have a goal in mind for just about everything I do, and in the rare occasions when I don't have a goal, I'm very much on edge. If you're into Myers Briggs personality types, you may understand this more clearly when I say that I am an INTJ. That means that I go into everything with a strategy, an end goal, and I expect things to come out a certain way (I'll throw in this anecdote to emphasize the point: my mother has often told me that when I was younger, the only way to get me out of the house was to tell me the plan for the day. But if the plan changed while we were out, she would need to tell me multiple times and explain why we were changing the plan so that I would not flip out. It's a true story).

You know I had to throw a church meme in here somewhere...

So, speaking of which, where am I going with this post? Well, I've been having trouble with my formation coursework. Those of you who come visit my blog regularly will not be too surprised to read that, since I have a noticeable gap in posts through most of last October and November. The biggest reason why I got back on my blog writing was because my grandmother passed away and I needed some way to articulate all the stuff that was bouncing around in my head (yet another symptom to show that I can get pretty far into my own head at times).

What I'm trying to say is that I found some insight to the pathways of my own brain recently when I listened to an episode of The One You Feed, which is a podcast I listen to fairly regularly. The specific  interview was with Gabriele Oettingen, who is a Professor of Psychology at New York University and the University of Hamburg. Her work has actually been regarding the perils of positive thinking, which is where I got hooked and decided to listen to the interview. She shared some of her findings and many of them rung true for me in the face of the challenges that I've been facing. I would like to share some of those reflections with you.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Something Like a Fireside Chat, or, Knock-Knock, Who's There?

Hello to all my dear readers,

This weekend is the official start to my spring break from teaching at the charter school where I work. Not that it's going to be a huge break, since my wife and I aren't traveling and there is plenty of work in preparing for the return from spring break. But I'm taking some time for myself; going running a few times and I'm working on a larger review of a really compelling interview that I listened to recently (it was an episode of The One You Feed, if anyone would like to listen to it before I publish my review and commentary).

All that being said, what I'm wanting to do this week is take a step back and share with you all the ways that you can connect with me and be a part of creating a larger conversation on the Interwebz. Because, truth be told, I don't just publish this blog because I need an outlet for all the ideas bouncing around in my head (although that is one of the reasons I publish this blog). I also write and publish what I do because I want to spark conversations online.