KVMV & Chick-fil-A Free Friday Morning Breakfast!

Posted by Max02 | | Posted On Friday, September 4, 2009 at 10:36 AM
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My church office won a drawing this week for a free Chick-fil-A breakfast courtesy of our local Christian radio network, KVMV. Troy, the guy who gets to drive the KVMV van around (how cool are those things?! /Although none come close to the Oscar Meyer Weiner-mobile) brought us our breakfast and some free goodies from the station. Leslie and I got the mugs. Among the loot were some t-shirts, caps, a water bottle, and a their version of the "going green" grocery bag (we took that, too).

They brought us 20 of these babies: --------------------->

They were delicious. I had two. There are really only 10 of us in the office and some of them didn't come to work today for various reasons. So that meant more for the rest of us! I might take a couple with me for lunch, lol.

So, one of the things that I learned today; Chick-fil-A has jelly. Personally, I like jelly on quite a lot of things: biscuits, toast, meatballs, peanut butter sandwhiches, the Monte Cristo from Bennigans, and other various food things I've yet to think of.

The chicken biscuit was pretty good. The chicken is always awesome at "the Fla" (as one of my friends calls it). The biscuit was different, compared to the standard fast food stuff served at McDonald's and Burger king. It felt, looked and tasted more like a homemade biscuit than any of the other places. Which probably explains why I'm still not sure if I really liked it or not. When you get used to something, it's hard to change, even if the new thing is better than the old.

My only complaint is that everything at "the Fla" is slightly more pricey than at other places. This, of course, means that the product is better (I should hope so, at least), but it also means that it puts more of a dent in my wallet. So, as much as I love Chick-fil-A, I don't think I'll be beating down their doors for breakfast. Especially when Burger King has a sausage biscuit for $0.50! I don't care if they put battery acid in it, it's cheap.

Chick-fil-A is better, though. Another downside is that "the Fla" is closed on Sundays. Which brings me to this video:

I LOVE this video. It's hilarious. Tim Hawkins does some great comedic stuff. His face at about 1:04 is priceless, too.

I love Chick-fil-A and I love it even more when it's FREE!

In other news, Leslie and I are leaving the office early to take our weekend off! We haven't had one since around May. That's a lot of weeks with five services each weekend. I love it, but we definitely need some time off. We'll be driving to McAllen, staying the night, getting some dinner, and hanging around the town all day tomorrow. I'll miss church, the people and the ministry teams.

Until then

Holding up a sign

Posted by Max02 | Labels: , , | Posted On Thursday, August 27, 2009 at 12:57 PM
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This past Sunday, Leslie and I were driving to South Padre Island to visit Zeste, a new gourmet-market place we stumbled on a few weeks ago. They sell these dehydrated vegetables that Leslie fell in love with. Good stuff. We ended up eating there. Good times.

On the way there, we saw a guy on the side of the road holding up a sign that said, “JESUS SAVES.” Brownsville’s a pretty small place, but I’ve actually never seen anyone on the side of the road with a sign that wasn’t either begging for money or asking for donations. But this guy was just standing there, sign held high. I thought it was really cool.

Anyway, the guy with the sign got me thinking that as courageous and as gutsy as it to stand on a busy street corner declaring “JESUS SAVES,” that’s only one part of the picture. I don’t know his name, I don’t know what church he goes to and I don’t know if he has a family. I don’t know if he believes in speaking in tongues, “missional” living or baptizing babies.

I don’t know if he’s a Presbyterian, Baptist, Non-denominational, or “other.” I don’t even know if he goes home and looks at porn, lies to his friends and family, or cheats on his exams. I don’t know anything about him. The only thing I know is that he’s standing on the corner of a busy street with a sign that says, “JESUS SAVES.”

If his sign is all I have to go on for him, he’s off to a fairly good start in my book. But these were my questions, “Who are you when you go home? What’s on the other side of that sign?”

It’s one thing for us to hold up our sign, go on a mission trip, church camp, or church service and then go home and live the rest of “our” lives. So many people get caught up in the actions of being a "good Christian," as if they can hold them up to God and say, “Look. You see that? I did that for You. Please be happy with me now.”

The Bible says:

“What good is it, dear brothers and sisters, if you say
you have faith but don’t show it by your actions?
Can that kind of faith save anyone?”
James 2:14

You can read the rest here.

The area that I live in is very Catholic in culture. However, it’s not a practicing, devout Catholicism. I grew up knowing that if someone said they were Catholic it meant they hardly ever went to mass, except for the "Holy Days" like Easter and Christmas, maybe Lent, and they went to confession every now and then. Other than that, they were no different than any other person who wasn’t a Catholic. They cussed, they fought, they cheated, stole, etc. That stereotype is still very much alive today.

Sadly, this definition of spiritual belief often defines Christians as a whole. Many of us go to church on the weekend, then go right back home to the thing God hates. One of the pastors at my church, Randy Cawlfield, said something along these lines. He said that some people come to church knowing full well that they will cheat on their wives in a few days, that they’ll go home to their live-in boyfriend or girlfriend, or that they’ll cheat on their taxes this year.

Who are you when you go home? When nobody else is watching? When you’re not standing in a room full of people raising their hands in worship? When you’re not in a far off country preaching about God’s love and plan for our lives? When you're not taking theology classes? Who are you?

Do you sit at home and watch TV shows you know are wrong and would never even think of recommending to anybody in church? Do you ignore your family? What are you like?

We hold up signs that say: Christian, Loving husband/wife/son/daughter/parent, PTA member, Small Group Leader, Pastor, Worship Leader, All-around good person. But what’s on the other side of your sign?

As hard as it can be to publicly announce your faith by word or deed, it’s what comes after that is even more demanding: what does the REST of your life say about you?

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy,
to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing
to God – this is your spiritual act of worship."
Romans 12:1


“Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.”
Romans 12:9

Read the whole thing here.

I don’t exclude myself from any of this. I’ll be the first to admit I’ve done all these things and then turned around, woke up every morning, and went to work at my church. I was a hypocrite. Plain and simple.

(Thank You, God, for forgiveness, mercy, love, and second chances.)

This is the question I find myself asking today:

Who are we when no one’s around?

Dinner, song writing and love

Posted by Max02 | Labels: , , , | Posted On Thursday, August 20, 2009 at 12:32 PM
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Leslie and I wrote a song yesterday.

In the past month or two I’ve been feeling like our church should start writing music, but I wasn’t sure how or where to start. A few weeks ago, one of the bass players in the band asked, “Have we ever thought of writing our own music for the band?” It was both timely and interesting to me because, as I’d said to my wife, I wanted to ask him to help me with just that.

God moves and speaks; it’s awesome.

We made some plans but they fell through because of unexpected work scheduling. We’re still planning to get together, but not for another week or two, depending on the schedule. I’m really looking forward to it.

The other night I had a really strange dream. I dreamt I was in a home with a family; father, mother, three children, grandma, and me (maybe I was part of the family, maybe I wasn’t, I can’t remember). What stands out to me, other than the grandma sitting on a rare mask the dad was hiding from the mom (don’t ask, I don’t know), there was the oldest girl. She was between 9 and 12 years old. She had really dark hair, dark eyes, thin, pretty pale, and kind of sad.

In my dream, this girl did something that was almost borderline evil, but I don’t remember what exactly, and the parents spanked her. She was devastated, as all children are devastated when they’re corrected. But there was something different, something off about it. Her clothes were suddenly drenched, you could practically see through the layers of fabric. She was wearing a hood-type shirt that she put over her head. I felt like I needed to talk to her, to tell her something. When I went and knelt in front of her, she used the hood to cover her eyes.

Aside from the wet clothes, strange hood and pale face, the thing that stood out the most to me were her eyes; they were white all over. It seemed like her pupils were being covered by this glossy, milky-white substance. You’ve heard the expression, “our eyes are the windows to our soul”? Well it felt like I was watching this girl’s heart and soul detach and pull away from the world. I don’t know what made her think or respond that way. But I remember saying, “You are loved.”

She hid her face from me again in her hood. She tried to pull away from me and the words that couldn’t be true. I made her look at me as I told her again, “You are loved. Don’t you know that you’re loved?” As I spoke those words to her again and again, it seemed as if the color came back to her eyes; that whatever it was that covered her eyes was being overtaken by her return to the world, emotion, and love.

That theme rang in my head all day yesterday. It reminded me of a scripture I half remembered about God’s love. I looked it up on www.biblegateway.com (wonderful site) and I found it:

Jeremiah 31:3
“Long ago the LORD said to Israel:
‘I have loved you, my people, with an everlasting love.
With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself.’”

When our dinner plans for yesterday fell through, I sent my wife an e-mail saying that I wanted the both of us to try and write a song. She was pretty excited about it and even started thinking about the theme I wanted to go with, “You are loved.”

Last night, after one of the best meals she’s ever cooked, we sat down with a notepad, pen and guitar and got to writing. I was working on chords while she cooked, so I had some rough melodies laid out. After the first session, which had almost the entire song written, we took a desert break, and then came back and finished off the bridge.

It was the first time Leslie and I started a song together. All in all I’d say it was pretty darn successful. At the end of the night we had an entire song completed (still a work in progress, of course). I think we make a great team.

All that to say, if you’ve ever felt worthless, unloved, unwanted or alone, please know that God loves you, He wants you, He chooses you, and He treasures you more than you know. We’re captured in His love; utterly covered by it.

In Your Eyes

Posted by Max02 | | Posted On Thursday, July 23, 2009 at 4:10 PM
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1. Put your iPod, iTunes, Windows Media Player, etc. on shuffle.
2. For each question, press the next button to get your answer.

Meant to Live – Switchfoot

Gibberish – Relient K
(Funny, my wife would say that’s about right.)

Breathe - Bleach
(Hahaha, them’s some low standards. Leslie has A LOT more thanjust breathing going for her.)

Lifesong – Casting Crowns

Where You Are - FFH

All the Same – Big Daddy Weave

(Don’t really know this song…)

Sea of Angels – Plus One

Thousand Miles – Caedmon’s Call

Epidermis Girl – Bleach


Landslide – Seven Places

(In a good way ;0) )

All I Need – Shawn McDonald

(Too true)

Tree Climber – Stellar Kart


You’re Not Alone – Storyside: B

Remembering You – Steven Curtis Chapman

Already – Rush of Fools

(That’s right, cause we already danced.)

Living for You – Gateway Worship

Life of Praise – Casting Crowns

(I don’t know about this one.)

All… – Hillsong United

Help Me – C3 Worship

Forward Motion – Relient K

[Untitled Track] – Relient K

In Your Eyes – Storyside: B

You don't have to do it, but it's fun (interesting). Let me know if you decide to do it. I wanna read your answers.

Free Donuts = Free Salvation

Posted by Max02 | Labels: , , , | Posted On Friday, June 5, 2009 at 12:17 PM
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I know how we all LOVE forwarded e-mails. Especially the Christian ones that “convict” us into sending it onto our victims, I mean, friends and family if we “really love Jesus.” I DO NOT send them out. If I do, I take off the last section about needing to send it to 15 people for a miracle to happen in their lives.

That being said, I like reading them. They’re kind of cool. I like the fictional stories. Do I believe they’re ALL real, of course not. Do I think they could possibly have happened? Yes, but probably not. Sorry to burst your bubble of “it’s in an e-mail so it MUST be true.” Jesus still loves me.

So today, my office-mate, Prof, sent me just such an e-mail. Don’t worry, he’s not a perpetuator of Spiritual Spam. I asked him to send it to me. This is how the story goes: Dr. Christianson (real original name, by the way) is in charge of a mandatory, freshmen level, Christian class. Basically, all freshmen in this small “Western United States college” (How can you tell me none of this is made up??? Anyways…) are forced to take this class.

Although Dr. Christianson, who is a Christian himself, does his best to make the class interesting and insightful, most of the students who attend only do so out of obligation. One year, Dr. Christianson gets a single person who WANTS to be in the class, a young man named Steve.

Sensing the opportunity of a Christian collaboration, Dr. Christianson speaks to Steve about a little demonstration he’d like to do in class. Steve agrees and it’s set. They work out the particulars, and everything’s ready.

The day comes and Steve is ready to go. Dr. Christianson has purchased a few dozen delicious donuts and is offering them to the entire class. The only hitch is that Steve must do 10 sit-ups before they receive the donut. Each student gets a donut, regardless of the fact if they want one or not, and Steve does 10 push-ups for each donut/person.

By the end of the demonstration people are upset at the Dr., crying because they can’t help, and Steve is laying on the floor exhausted. Dr. Christianson then turns to his class, and the extra people who happened to wander in for free donuts, and says that this demonstration was done to give them a picture of the sacrifice Jesus made for the world. Some people accepted their donuts as the gift they were while others left their donuts untouched on their desks. Whether or not they choose to accept the gift, the price has been paid. Class dismissed.

While this story is most assuredly made up, it serves as a demonstration in and of itself. The actions taken by the people reflect the actions taken by God and Jesus. They came together and decided on a ransom for our very souls.

I used to be upset about Jesus dying on the cross. I never really understood why, though. I just knew that, when a pastor would speak about the Crucifixion, I would cry bitter tears and there would be this dark, stormy cloud of turmoil spinning around in my head and heart. I could visually imagine Jesus nailed to the cross for me. I could see His hurt and know that I couldn’t do anything about it. By why would it upset me?

After I read that forward, I realized something. Some of the students in the class offered to do their own push-ups for their donuts, but the Dr. wouldn’t let them. He said only Steve could. And, in reality, only Jesus could lay down His life for us because no one else has the power to. I would sit there, years ago, and pray that Jesus wouldn’t be tortured for my sake. Only now do I understand, as I read of the many students who rejected their donuts, that I KNEW Jesus’ sacrifice, the price He paid, the pain He went through, yet I also KNEW that I was going to leave that room and live my life the way I wanted to. I KNEW I was going to sin. I was already making plans to sin before I even got to church. And that killed me. The price had been paid and I knew that I was rejecting it before I could even appreciate it.

Life is different for me now. I do my best to really be the person God wants me to be, instead of just paying lip service and continuing on with “my life.” When I think of Jesus’ sacrifice for me now, tears still come to my eyes, but they’re no longer bitter. Although there are millions of people in the world who daily reject Him, I know that I accept AND, more importantly, appreciate His gift.

“To him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy — to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen.” Jude 1:24-25

I love donuts and I love salvation, especially with chocolate on top…of the donut, of course :oD

As a RANDOM happening, today seems to be the National Donut Day! Krispy Kreme and Dunkin' Donuts are giving away a free donut with the purchase of any beverage (limit one per customer). Go, enjoy a cup of coffee and donut, and maybe think about the other free gifts in our lives that are sitting on our proverbial desks.

Update on my back

Posted by Max02 | | Posted On Saturday, March 7, 2009 at 8:46 PM
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Ok, so the past few days have been kind of a bummer.

My back decided to flip out on me on Wednesday. Stupid thing. I don't think I feed it enough.

Well, anyways, so I saw my Chiropractor (ha, spelled it right my first try!) on Monday, got adjusted and everything seemed fine. I was a little tense after the visit, but everything was okay. Tuesday, my back was still tense. I'm pretty sure that's when I blogged last and asked for some prayer. Wednesday morning is when it hit the fan.

Ok, so I wake up and everything's peachy. I get out of bed with no complaints from my back. I use the restroom, and get down on my knees to wash my hands. Side Note: after my back started giving me problems, I found that it was easier and less painful to get on my knees to wash my hands instead of leaning forward to the ridiculously short sink in our restroom. I finish washing my hands, and guess what, I can't stand up...crap. Not only can I not stand up, but I'm in a whole lot of pain. I call my wife and she helps me limp to the bed, which is, luckily, only a few feet away (thank God we live in an apartment).

We call the church office to let them know I won't be in and that Leslie won't be in for long because she's going to head back and take me to the doctor's office. After much coersion and outbursts of pain, Leslie leaves for the office and I'm left alone to my agony. Seriously, I knew she had to take care of some things for me, but neither of us wanted her to leave me alone. I call the Chiropractor's office and let them know I'll be late and that I'm in a serious amount of pain.

Leslie comes back from the office and helps me get dressed, out of the apartment, and down the stairs (Why God? Why did we have to live on the second floor???). Let me just tell you now, if your back ever starts to spasm, get some serious meds in you, fast. I took a "cocktail," which is a mix of Advil and Tylenol. It didn't do much for me except appease my mind.

We get to the doctor's office and it was like half of my church decided to come in for an adjustment. There were at least 6 people from my church there that morning. They all opted to let me through before them; thanks ladies :)

Can I just give you one tip? When you're going to any doctor's office or hospital of any sort, DON'T WEAR SHORTS. I was not only in pain, I was also freezing!

After laying on a few contraptions that eased my back whilst also causing me more pain, (it was a very perplexing thing for me) my Dr. said that he wanted me to get some meds and an MRI. They scheduled an emergency apointment with a clinic down the road and I was off to find me some meds.

Our general practitioner, the doctor we usually see, wasn't in the office and they wanted us to come in and sit for another ungodly amount of time, so we called some friends to see if they had any leftover pain meds. I know, I know, it's totally wrong to do that. But I was in pain! You'd totally do the same thing, just wait.

We get to the MRI place and find out that they not only have to wait for authorization from my chiropractor, who just happened to leave for a 2 hour lunch, they also have to wait for my insurance to clear. The insurance is under my dad's name and there are all these prerequisites that have to be met, like faxed info from the doctor who saw me who, again, just so happend to step out for a long lunch....yeah.

Long story short, we ended up going to the general practitioner's office to get the meds. We also had to wait till the next day to get the MRI, but but than, thank God, I had my meds (a pain killer and a muscle relaxer).

Thank you God for muscle relaxers.

The next day, I had the MRI then headed over to my chiropractor to deliver the films. My stomach was NOT feeling good and, before we even park in the parking lot at the doc's office, I was out of the car and spewing whatever was in me on the side of the road. Lucky me.

Days later, I'm here in my house, where I've been for the past four days and haven't gone very many places other than the doc's office. Leslie leaves only when she has to, we'd both rather have her stay here. My back is okay. It's still spasming, but the meds help A LOT with the pain.

Leslie's been awesome. She's had to pick up the slack from everything I can't do: taking out the trash, refilling the 5 gallon water jug, lugging the groceries up the stairs, washing all the dishes, and acting as a human walker for me when I want to move from the bed/couch to the restroom. Yeah, she's been amazing.

Please be praying for us. The MRI results should be in Monday. We don't know if it's just my sacrum (spelling? any idea what the heck that is??), or if I have a herniated disc, or what. We'll see Monday. Pray for Leslie, who, like I said, is carrying a lot of extra responsibilities and emotions.

Hopefully it won't take me so long to update next time.

Prayer Request

Posted by Max02 | | Posted On Wednesday, February 25, 2009 at 3:43 PM
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Please be praying for me.

My back REALLY hurts. I don't know what happened or how, but over the past few months this pain in my back has been getting worse and worse.

I went to see my chiropractor today and I'm scheduled for another visit on Friday. Hopefully it'll get better before the weekend. Leading worship three day in a row won't be fun if I'm constantly distracted by pains in my lower back.

I'm 24...I'm way too young to be having back problems!!!

Pray for me, please.


Fun Stuff for the beginning of the week

Posted by Max02 | | Posted On Tuesday, February 10, 2009 at 11:13 AM
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Luke 15

Posted by Max02 | | Posted On Wednesday, January 28, 2009 at 4:13 PM
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So Katdish has a post going on about Luke chapter 15.

I read it and started to comment. However, when I was almost done with putting my completed thoughts down in the comment section, I realized what I had on my hands; I had a Bible commentary. She was very specific in what type of comment she wanted back, and a commentary on what we had just read was not among the list. So, sadly, I cut and pasted my thoughts out of the comments box.

But don't fret, gentle and not-so-gentle readers. For I have decided to post my thoughts here, where I'm free to do so at my own discretion.


People tell me I have a rather diabolical laugh. (seriously, I laugh like that sometimes).

Anyways, here are my thoughts on Luke chapter 15.

Hey Kat,

I liked your post and challenge.

I read through it a few times. I actually looked it up in different translations to see if I could glean a little more out of their subtle, and not so subtle, changes in word use.

I think the first few verses really sum up the entire post...err...chapter.

God knows our hearts and minds. He, like Santa but MUCH cooler, knows if we're being bad or good; if we're being superficial, self-important, self-righteous hypocrites (harsh, but oh so true sometimes), or if we're being humble and meek with hearts of servants.

Something I find really cool is that, when Jesus taught, there were usually a group of "learned" people who thought themselves so much better than the "common" people. Such is the case here.

Jesus knows what the Pharisees were thinking. So he gave them something better to think about. I also think it's really cool that Jesus gave them, the Pharisees, a little gem, as well as the "regular" people around Him.

He used terms that people could grasp quickly. Shepherds know and love their animals. Their lives depend on their livestock. Of course a shepherd will rejoice when they've found that one lost sheep. Jesus then compares it to the joy in Heaven when someone who is "lost in sin" repents and gives their life to God. In the NLT it says there is more joy over a repentant sinner than for someone who has never strayed away, so I have to assume that He's talking about people who love God and live for Him already.

Jesus moves onto the next area people readily connect with, their money. This is simple math. 10 - 1 = 9, which is one less than ten. Some translations go on to say that one of those silver coins equaled a WHOLE DAY of wages. I don't care who you are or what you do for a living, nobody wants to lose a whole day of pay if they already worked for it. Imagine the relief associated with that. Jesus was saying the same relief, if not more, is felt in Heaven when someone is saved. The hard work done by God, Jesus, the angels, and other people is fulfilled when someone comes to Christ for the first time.

Then He finally hits home His whole point with the relational/emotional part. Imagine the loss of a loved one to the world. After spending your life teaching, encouraging, and training your child, they leave, they turn on you, they spit in your face and say, "My way is better." Ouch. Now, think of the shame, guilt, and fear if you are that lost person coming back to your family after realizing how stupid you were. Then add in the emotions and perspectives of the Father and brother. That's a lot of emotional baggage there.

The guilt and shame of the prodigal, the relief and love of the Father, and the confusion and bitterness of the brother are all emotions we can relate to.

Then and now "sinners" don't expect acceptance and love when they repent and apologize. They expect bitterness, anger, and punishment. But the grace shown by God and His people overwhelm them.

The Father is overjoyed to have His son back, His child, His beloved.

The brother, is a different matter. He got caught up in a little pity party of woe-is-me, maybe I should have sinned too. He doesn't realize how good he has it.

He thinks, I've been here this whole time and you've never celebrated me, and now he (the prodigal) comes back after blowing his money and you throw the biggest pachanga you can in such a short notice.

To this, the Father reminds him that he is no less loved. Quite the opposite, actually. He is just as much an owner of the land as his Father.

The way I see it, I believe the Father means to say that he never threw so much as a fajita barbecue for him because he never asked. And why didn't he ask? Probably because He never understood that when the inheritance was given out, he came into ownership of his part. Everything he could want lay before him. But, possibly blinded by his negativity toward his brother, he never realized this. I don't know for sure.

What it tells me, I think, is that I shouldn't get caught up in my own self-righteousness. I need to remember that people who are forgiven much are that much more thankful for what they've undeservedly received. I should be happy for them, rejoicing in the fact that they now have a home in Heaven, not bitter because I'm jealous that they got to live the so-called "good" life and NOW they're coming to God.

I need to be reminded, like the son that stayed at home, that I am a child of God, and everything He has to offer will be laid out for me if only I ask (and it lies within His will).

Sorry if I posted a novel, but that was my though progression, and you did ask for that, right? I hope this wasn't a Bible commentary...

Oh wait, it is. Dangitt.

Thanks for inspiring this post Katdish.