Wednesday, May 17, 2006

It's Cool to be Old School

Seriously have I talked about Old School Nintendo yet? My roomates and I are freaking out about all the games we have just acquired from our friend Andy. Nintendo has had a resurrection of sorts in my life...for years video games were dead to me. I considered them time wasting devices that only the true blue stereotypical "game nerds" spent countless hours on, ignoring their mom and the outside world all together. You know the type...crazy hair...X-men T-shirt. Yeah. And man do they love video-games. Well, I ignored video games for years. I felt like they were the enemy. Hiding in trenches, behind bushes, ready to attack my time with hours of pixlelized digital annimation. Recently, when a Nintendo somehow found it's way into our living room, we became once again...entrigued..

For those of you who received your first Nintendo for Christmas or a Birthday in the 80's, you know what I'm talking about. I mean what's better than two games in one, Super Mario and Duck Hunt. Don't you just hate that dog who laughs at you everytime you miss the ducks? Were you always the one who got up one inch from the T.V. with the gun and still couldn't hit those blasted ducks. Me too.

Now there's also Contra. It's a shooting game where these army guys shoot and do flips at the same time. It's sweet. My roomate Phil is crazy about this game. He told me tonight if he could leave church and play Contra he would. There's something totally wrong about leaving church to play video games. Can't say I didn't think about it...that's why at Oneighty we have video games here. All these new systems we have, the 360 and Playstation...they cannot compare to what is vintage and true.

OK Here's the real deal. I'm totally a huge geek for writing the last 3 paragraphs and should not be allowed to blog anymore. Those of you with grace, please note I have recently found that Nintendo is fun again. I don't play it all the time, but for the brief moments that I do I am brought back to my childhood (those carefree days with bowl-cuts and hammer pants) and until the day I put the Old School Nintendo back in it's box and let it again collect dust for 20 years I will cherish these moments. Random thought ending now.

Monday, May 08, 2006

I'm Not that Good at Basketball

I've been thinking lately about how much Jesus talks about His Kingdom a lot in the New Testament. How many of us have visions for our lives and our visions seem so BIG and GODLY and all that.

Before you tune out here's a story...When I was ten years old I wanted to play in the NBA with Michael Jordan and Magic Johnson. I would shoot free-throws for hours in my driveway, dreaming, hoping, really was a beautiful thing. Then I got to 7th grade and tried out for the basketball team. Turns out there were about 50 other dudes shooting free-throws in their driveway wishing they could dunk like MJ too. It also turns out that I was better than like 10 of them, so it left me to thinking that if these pubescent youths were mostly better than me at basketball that my hopes of being the NBA superstar were slightly less likely than I thought. I say slightly because I still hold on to this dream today, wearing my headband and Reebok's pumps every Sunday afternoon at 3 on the church basketball court. Dreaming, hoping, wishing...getting stuffed by my small group guys:) You know, things like that.

I say all this for one reason...many of us out there having been dreaming for years that someday we would accomplish the vison that God has put in our hearts. At least we say that God has put them in our hearts. Or there's this entirely different group of people in the world who have no idea what they are supposed to do with their lives. They move from one job to the next, hoping, dreaming, wishing that this one could be the right one. Whoever you are, you've probably wondering if these dreams are from God.

The truth of the matter is this, that God has already given us a vision statement for our lives. It's found tucked away in Matthew 6:33 and it says plainly, "Seek first His Kingdom and His Righteousness and all these things will be added to you." Jesus says this in the context of people (like me) trying to heap up wealth and possessions in order to satisfy themselves. He says earlier, "Look at these flowers, God takes care of them and they are stupid flowers! God clothes them, he'll take care of you. (obviously Casey translation). Still the point is that God is saying "Quit worrying about all this!" Here's what the real vision of your life should be: First, Seek My Kingdom and Righteousness. I'm learning to make this the headline of my life, instead of "Save the World" or "Be a Rockstar!"

We go around searching, in meaningless pursuits, or even things that may seem worthwhile. Are we truly hitting God's will for our lives? I'm not saying that everything you ever dreamed is wrong. I am saying if it is not in correct order underneath
God's Vision statement, that you've got mixed up priorities. Here's how it should look:

First, Seek His Kingdom and Righteouness
(place Visions and dreams here)

This way the thoughts in your mind and your actions are advancing God's Kingdom and not your own. This is a good filter system if you're not sure if what you're dreaming is God's dream for You. Now I know this is not as easy as it sounds or you may be thinking "Hello, I already knew that years ago!" Well...this is my blog, get your own:)

Seriously though, wake up tomorrow, with one thing in mind: His Kingdom, His Righteous (don't forget that holiness is huge!) then watch how the ambitions of your heart align with His. You'll find such joy in it, and you may find that you're not good enough for the NBA anyways:) I think you're great for reading this.