my inner monologue...
site by Andrew Seely
Saturday, December 31, 2005
This is a list of the books that I have read during 2005. I have listed them alphabetically just for reference and have linked to the amazon page for each book.
+ for number of times read after the first
~ read book once and re-reading
* did not finish reading or still reading
Name of Book ++*
Would mean that I read the book 3 times and am re-reading the book.
Name of Book *
Would mean I am still reading or have not finished the book.
The Confessions of St. Augustine by St. Augustine *
Velvet Elvis by Rob Bell +++*
Emerging Churches by Ryan Bolger and Eddie Gibbs *
The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer *
The Sacred Journey by Frederick Buechner *
The Book of Uncommon Prayer by Steve Case ~
Hurt by Chap Clark
A Matrix of Meanings by Craig Detweiler and Barry Taylor
How to Read the Bible for All Its Worth by Gordan Fee and Douglas Stuart
Church Next by Eddie Gibbs
The Sacred Way by Tony Jones ~
The Dictionary of Paul and His Letters edited by Gerald Hawthorne
The Lion, Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis +
Prince Caspian by C.S. Lewis
The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C.S. Lewis
The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis
The Horse and His Boy by C.S. Lewis
The Magicians Nephew by C.S. Lewis
The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis
The Ragamuffin Gospel by Brennan Manning
The Right to Lead by John Maxwell
A Generous Orthodoxy by Brian McLaren
A New Kind of Christian by Brian McLaren
The Story We Find Ourselves In by Brian McLaren
Adventures in Missing the Point by Brian McLaren and Tony Campolo
Beyond the Mirror by Henri Nouwen
In the Name of Jesus by Henri Nouwen ~
With Open Hands by Henri Nouwen
Celebrating the Third Place edited by Ray Oldenburg
Body Prayer by Doug Pagitt and Kathryn Prill *
The Gospel According to the Simpsons by Mark Pinsky
Post-Rapture Radio by Russell Rathbun
Creating Community by Andy Stanley and Bill Willits *
The Divine Hours: Prayers for Summertime by Phyllis Tickle *
The Divine Hours: Prayers for Autumn and Wintertime by Phyllis Tickle *
Girl Meets God by Lauren Winner
Real Sex by Lauren Winner
Liquid Church by Pete Ward +
Dangerous Wonder by Michael Yaconelli +*
Messy Spirituality by Michael Yaconelli ~
This is most likely not a complete list, but it is the best I can think of. Some of these books I have read before and have re-read them this year. But most of the books I read for the first time this year. I hope this list inspires some of you to take a look at a few if not many of the books. Happy New Year.
I still owe you thoughts on Brokeback Mountain
Friday, December 30, 2005
If you recall this post, then I have good news.
I received a voice message from a friend who told me she had come across my book. Even though I had asked her a while ago if she had it. But then again she's a recently newlywed so I guess it got stowed away in a box that didn't get unpacked until now, so I'll give her a break.
The only crappy thing is that when I bought Emerging Churches I also bought another copy of In The Name of Jesus. But I haven't even cracked it yet and I'm really partial to all my notes, I can think of someone who's going to get a late x-mas present.
Tuesday, December 27, 2005
It's good to be back in the blogging world.
I really enjoyed my sabbatical, it really allowed me to do some thinking and reflecting during the time. Though I must say it was quite hard at times not to log in and put something up here. While I did think of many things to blog about, I refrained from putting any of them down on paper to post at a later time. Though I'm sure some of those things will resurface sooner or later.
I do have to share one thing that I REALLY wanted to post. And you may have already seen it. I love this so much I've probably seen it at least 2 times a day, everyday since I first saw it (about 9 days ago).
Coming in the next few days: Thoughts and reflections on the movie Brokeback Mountain (official site)
Sunday, December 25, 2005
I'm tired of all the consumerism. I'm tired of the music. I'm tired of the advertising. I'm tired of hearing about money or the lackthereof. I'm tired of cars with ribbons on top. I'm tired of lights. I'm tired of "Christmas Wars". I'm tired of Santa and snowmen.
I really like Christmas as a Holy Day. I really like the idea of serving others. Doing something instead of eating and sitting. While I know family is important...I think maybe next year I'll spend the majority of the day in worship somewhere. Or in service to others. Anyone want to come? I think if we spent more time thinking about Christmas as a holy day, there wouldn't have been fuss about churches closing today. There wouldn't be as much talk about presents and food and plans. A holy day...where we STOP and sit in worship of the Lord who was born. What happens when you become a parent? You sit in a hospital for a day, enjoying a newfound sense of love and adoration for a child. You are not concerned with news or chores or phone calls or dinner plans. You are there within the moment...nothing else.
Christmas eve is nice. You look good, you sing well, and you see friends. But if the birth of our Lord is such an amazing turning point in all of history, then how have we forgotten to celebrate it with HIM? A birthday party is about the person who's birth it is, not the other guests or ourselves or anyone else. It is the one time we think solely of one other person.
Today is Jesus' birthday.
Let's stop cooking, cleaning, wrapping and unwrapping, eating, traveling, napping, avoiding, busying and whatever else. And devote an entire day to him.
I don't want to divorce myself from Christmas, I just want it to mean something other than what culture tells me what it should mean.
On this day a Christ was born, who lived, breathed, walked, talked, just like you and me. He lived sinlessly. He died in pain and anguish, betrayed and condemned. But rose to life to conquer death so that you and I may have life eternal and life to the fullest.
Thursday, December 08, 2005
This is my official hobo-blogger notice.
I don't know when I will return. I think I need some time off from blogging. I still have way too many ideas that I want to blog (so I will be back). But for now I think I need to do some off-blog reflecting and searching.
I will still be reading blogs and most likely commenting. Though I have kicked around a total computer sabbatical, but that will have to wait.
If you want to reach me, please do so by email or phone. I will leave my number here, feel free to call and chat, if I don't answer just leave a message.
eight-one-eight eight-zero-zero one-eight-nine-zero
Until I return...
Monday, December 05, 2005
I know my birthday isn't for another 57 days. But I already know something that I want.
Why not ask for it at x-mas, you ask?
Well it actually doesn't come out until Feb 6th.
If you didn't know there is going to be a Curious George movie (trailer) out next year (official site) and guess who's doing original music for the soundtrack??
None other than the man Jack Johnson.
You can see some behind the scenes stuff here. (there should be more of these in the weeks to come)
I guess at this point I should say that I want the soundtrack for my birthday, in case you haven't already figured that out. (I'll probably go see the movie too. I mean who doesn't like monkeys??? Seriously?)
Sunday, December 04, 2005
I've got my first article published on line, check it out here.
It's actually an old post.
Feel free to leave more comments/discussion.
Thanks for reading and/or stopping by if it's your first time. And thanks to those who continue to read.
I used to have this phrase in regards to snow that "It's nice to visit, but not to live in."
But for the first time since I left Spokane, WA after college, I miss the snow.
Don't get me wrong I still love LA. I love the fact that on xmas morning there's a high probability that I'll be able to wear shorts, but the last few days I've been missing the snow and just being able to spend a little time hanging out in it, with out having to either be snowboarding or make a long trek to get to snow.
Let it snow, let it snow.
That's my Sunday morning thought for the day.
Here's my weather forecast for today.
Friday, December 02, 2005
Just a moment ago, I was thinking about something and when I got to the door to my house I pressed the unlock button on my car keys thinking it would unlock my house.
If you've been following this blog over the last 3 months then you have followed my struggle and difficulties with pneumonia, see here, here and here.
This has been a very difficult thing. Not so much due to the illness but more related to the problem of health care.
You see I don't have health care right now. I can't afford it, even though my job offers it. This is the first time in my life where I haven't had the security of health care. I've never really been sick before, and I think the worst thing I've had to endure would be...well not much comes to mind. I'm totally thankful for a lack of debilitating illnesses and other aliments that required frequent doctor visits.
My heart cries for those who have a continual relationship to the health care system, as it often can be difficult and stubborn, especially when things take longer and cost more than they should and a person can afford.
What breaks my heart more is those who are sick and without health care.
My recent illness give me insight into the world of treatment without health care.
I'll start by saying that I am quite fortunate to come from a upper-middle class family with upper-middle, and upper class friends. This luxury afforded me the ability to see a family friend doctor for free for my basic diagnosis and treatment of my recent pneumonia. The struggle came when I needed x-rays to determine what exactly was happening in my chest during the pneumonia. The first time I went into have an x-ray done (since my doctor doesn't have that equipment, because he has a private practice) I went to a local hospital. Where if I had coverage the x-ray would have cost probably no more than 40 dollars. But because I didn't have health care and didn't have the time to seek out alternatives (which I'll get to) I ended up paying (well my mom paid, thanks mom) around 300 dollars which is about 1/2 of the price if I didn't pay "cash" (payment in some form on that day).
The real hassle came when I needed a 2nd x-ray because my doctor is a thorough (good to have) doctor. He really just wanted to make sure things were clearing up and doesn't have the god-given ability to just look into the inside of my chest.
After a little research, it was discovered that the county health clinics could do an x-ray for significantly less, about 50 dollars.
This is a good option.
Here's where things get really difficult.
The clinic that I found opened at 7:30am. I woke up early one morning around 8am and gave the clinic a call to try and schedule an appointment. When I called they said all of their walk-in appointments were filled for the day. In order to get one I would have to come in and sign up for one at 7:30am.
Next day. I went down to the clinic and arrived at around 7:25am. I got in the line and waited to receive my number to see a doctor. I waited around an hour or so for my number to be called and then was promptly told that they only accept 5 "new" (never been seen there) patients a day. I would have to be 1 of 5 new patients in the front of the line to receive treatment from them, but it was possible to receive treatment. Luckily before leaving I asked what time people started lining up in front of the building. They said 6:30am. I almost cried.
The very next morning (and mind you I'm not a morning person). I got up and drove over to the clinic once again and arrived around 6:25am and got in line. I was around 4th in line. There's no way I wouldn't be one of the 5 new patients. Basically that day I spent from 6:30am to 11am then 1pm to 2pm at the clinic that day.
The next challenge was getting my results, which long story short, they wouldn't give me over the phone, but had to show up at 7am to get in line and wait some more just to have them see me for about 5 min to tell me I'm all clear.
Here's where I'd like to make some comments about how this system, while doing a lot of good for those without health care is really flawed.
I must point something out. First I didn't fit in when I showed up to the clinic, it is in a poorer part of town that is mainly hispanic and I come from the upper-middle class part of town. My dress, my mannerisms, and my ethnicity just didn't fit in. I just have to wonder what people thought of me. At one point I felt a bit guilty because I knew that most of these people probably needed these services more than I did. While someone did point out that the place is for people who don't have health care and I didn't have health care so I was just as entitled to the services as anyone else, it still didn't sit right with me.
Another thing, I am fortunate enough to have a very flexible work schedule, I don't really have set hours and have control over the schedule of my work, which affords me the countless hours that I spent at the clinic. I actually read 2 1/2 books during my total time in the clinic. But what about these people who don't make a lot of money, can't pay for health insurance and are missing work to be here for hours on end. It seems that the mere task of getting well is costing them more than what little money it costs for treatment. Getting well is costing their livelihood.
This shouldn't be. It is a shame that we live in one of the wealthiest countries in the world and it is costing people their lives to get healthy. I would like to be hopeful and say that people weren't sacrificing food just to get healthy. In the sense that people would give up a days work that feeds their family so that they can pay money that they don't have to get help for an illness that would have been prevented if they had been able to see a doctor on a regular basis.
I feel trusted into this world which I never would have been exposed to if, myself had not gotten sick without health care.
I'm not sure what a proper response to this would be, maybe Will Samson will have some ideas about providing across the board health care from a governmental standpoint. But what I do know is, next time please think really hard about complaining that you had to sit in the ER for a long time (which your health care will cover the cost) or that you didn't get to have a 4th opinion or that your prescription drugs cost 30 dollars (because drugs WITHOUT health insurance costs almost 5 times as much).
My heart is out for those who must suffer in these conditions for the majority of their lives. I myself more than likely will get health care sometime in the future, therefore not having to experience a clinic again.
I urge you to find ways to provide heath care for everyone. Especially those who live in 3rd world countries. I've not experience that, but from what I know, I know it's exponentially worse than what I had to go through.
This could be an amazing testament to what Christians can do. I think it is a very missional and social way of thinking about what Christ would have encouraged people to do. I think health care should cost around 200-300 dollars a month for a family. What if churches started encouraging members to pledge money on a regular basis to pay for some family's health care. I'm sure there are affluent Christians that easily spend 200-300 extra dollars on things they could cut back on.
I hope this post at least sparks some conversation about what the Church can do to meet this very real and urgent need.
I posted here about the new Firefox, and one of the things that had really been annoying me was the fact that my recent comment section was no longer fitting into the sidebar. Although I had messed it up in the first place when I tried a beta feature from haloscan. So this new update should fix both problems. While you no longer immediately see a portion of the comment, all you have to do is hover your mouse over the name and you should see a portion of the comment and the post that it comes from. The only other alternative I could think of would be to switch over to typepad but I don't think I'm ready to give up the template control I have in blogger.
Let me know what you think.
I'm really thinking hard about a total blog makeover. But the time and effort it takes is a daunting task which I'm not sure if I want to undertake. Plus I think I want to learn some more HTML and CSS before I start on a total redesign.
I know I haven't been a great blogger this week, but I'll try and get some thoughts up soon.
I'm thinking of starting a series on suffering, especially since I think it is one of the central themes to the christmas story...but more to come in the posts.
update 1:33 am
I did some updating to the links over on the left. Added the "quite hobo" section and moved some people around as well as added a few people to different sections. I don't even if people use the links, or recent posts. In case you didn't realize all you have to do is click on the headings and the menu will expand. Leave me a comment and let me know if you find these things helpful and/or changes you'd like to see.
Thursday, December 01, 2005
If you haven't seen it there's a new 9 min trailer for Narnia. I'm weeping just due to the emotions brought up by the score and the images. While I'm pretty sure I'm going to have a lot of things that I'll be disapointed with (in terms of staying true to the book) in the movie, I'm sure that I'll find much of the movie moving and powerful.
I'm planning on re-reading the book before the movie comes out, even though I read the whole series earlier this year.
You can find my previous posts about narnia here and here.
Found the trailer at Rhett's site and he found it from the A-team Blog