Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Packing... and more packing...

Got more packing done last night.  Finally bottled my wine kit much earlier than I typically do.  Unfortunately with the move, I'm not going to move a 25L carboy full of wine.  If that thing cracked it would be a freaking mess and a horrible waste.  So I bottled my wine and packed up all my wine making gear.

  That took a couple hours.  But slowly and surely the basement is starting to clear up.  Tonight I expect to be finishing the roof with my friend and then the rest of this week's free time will be spent cleaning and packing more of my stuff.

  I think if I had known how much work it would take to do this move; I would've changed my mind. :P  Oh well, we've come this far now, we'll go the rest of the way.

Come Let us Dine together

  I'm shooting from the hip a bit here.  I'm definitely open for dialogue on this.  I've thought about communion for years.  It's become such a tradition for Christians to spend 5 minutes in somber thought as they hold a cracker and a cup of grape juice and meditate on Jesus' suffering on the cross.

   I remember at a young age trying to meditate on this so seriously that I could feel a profound sense of grief.  Unfortunately, as the years passed I became increasingly jaded to the cross and communion became just a necessary ritual to the faith.

  After I left the Church I re-examined every belief and tradition we observe, I continue to do so.  Communion was one I used to stumble over.  I'm not going to have time today to go over everything.  I'll write more on this tomorrow, but here's my take on communion.

  I believe what the Bible really meant in regards to this was for believers to come together.  To spend time in fellowship, having a meal together.  Experiencing the Body of Christ as called out believers together.  Not as though we were dining on the flesh and blood of Christ, but as though we were a living breathing organism that makes up the parts of Christ's body.

  That is what communion really means.  Not this sombre thoughtless tradition that innures you to the life of Christ as the years roll by.  The more I grow to understand traditions and where they come from and what they do, the greater I despise them.  Seeing how they harden hearts to God by simple process of repetition.

   They become so driven into our faith and become such a part of our culture that we have relegated Christ Jesus to being just white noise in our lives.  We never have a living and vital faith, because we've never questioned, studied, and wrestled with our understanding of God, Jesus, the Bible and what our purpose is.

  In the end, Christians tend to worship an idol, rather than the living God.  I don't know what's more tragic than that.  Really I dont...

   Anyways, tomorrow I'll delve into scriptures on communion and we'll find out what the Bible has to say on this.

Love and peace to you all,


Tuesday, July 30, 2013

4 more days...

Morning all,

   So last night, we take our king sized mattresses to my grandmother's place and spend the evening with her visiting for a few hours.  By the time it was close to Cassidy's bed time we left.  I grabbed a few things from Wal Mart and made my way home.

   The last two weeks have been crazy with packing moving and stuff, as you know.  So last night I simply relaxed on the couch with a glass of wine and watched an episode of Without a Trace.  No other moving stuff at all.  My wife and I DID sign up with so we can put our house up on the market on Saturday.

  From what I've been hearing, houses are selling pretty quickly in Calgary.  Hopefully we can price it right so it moves quickly, AND we can take a good downpayment for our new house with us.

   I've been looking at 24' trucks driving around Calgary.  I think I can handle that... I hope so. LOL  I guess we'll find out in a while.

   Sorry I'm out of theological thoughts today.  Most of my thinking is on what needs to be done next to get ready to sell.  Fixing, cleaning, and all that fun stuff.

Love you all, and be well!


Monday, July 29, 2013

What a Weekend...

  It's been an incredibly busy weekend.  Saturday I spent all day on the roof with my friend Claude.  From 8 in the morning til 6:30 that night we tore off the roof, and laid new paper, underlay and shingles down.  My face is burnt, my neck is burnt, and by 10pm that night, I was exhausted, sore, and shivering from a sligh case of sun stroke.

   Fortunately, a good night's sleep and lots of water cured that.

   There's not many days left before we put the house on the market.  So Sunday morning I got back at it.  Went downstairs and took apart my desk from the basement living area, and moved it into our newly designated "office" area.  I've taken out so much network cable throughout the house in order to make it look more appealing without all these cables going everywhere.  I ended up organizing all the cables, wires, and powerbars and other crap that I've had and put it into a bin for storage.

   There's still quite a bit to do by Saturday, I think we'll get enough of it done by then that we can put the house on the market.  Once we do, we'll continue cleaning, tidying and getting everything looking FANTASTIC before the house sells.

  Plus there's alot of stuff we can just put on Kijiji and sell.

You're So Vain

  Anyways, being on the roof and working all day with no ghetto blaster playing or distractions, I thought alot about alot of things.  Particularly the Bible and the Church.  And as I was working on the house, this scripture came to mind;

Psalms 127:1
Unless the Lord builds the house,
    the builders labor in vain...

  What is vanity? Webster's dictionary describes it as "marked by futility or ineffectualness"

Romans 8:20-21
20 For to vanity was the creation subjected, not voluntarily, but because of Him Who subjects it, in expectation
21 that the creation itself, also, shall be freed from the slavery of corruption into the glorious freedom of the children of God.
22 For we are aware that the entire creation is groaning and travailing together until now.

  Paul even points out that ALL of creation as it now stands is subject to vanity.  Also, King Solomon writes;

Ecclesiastes 1:2-5
2 Vanity of vanities, says the Assembler; Vanity of vanities, the whole is vanity. 
3 What advantage has a human in all his toil Which he toils under the sun? 
4 One generation goes, and another generation comes, Yet the earth is standing for the eon. 

5 The sun rises, and the sun sets And gasps back to its place, That it may rise there once more.

Because death is the lot of all mankind, and everything is subject to corruption.  Everything IS vanity.  It's empty.  It's meaningless.  Just think, once you die, everything you've owned gets dispersed.  For the majority of humankind, we will be forgotten to history, and even those who have their moments in history like Socrates, Alexander the Great, and etc.  Their effect on the present is so miniscule as to be meaningless.

This is what it means to be futile, to be in vain.

  Once again, back to the Psalms I spoke of.  I reflected on it, and on the contemporary Christian churches as they stand today.  When I was in the ICOC there was a heavy focus on numbers.  We would convert everyone and anyone no matter what the costs.  In fact, I know for certain Bible verses were bent out of shape, people would compromise, say and do anything to win a convert into the Church and claim that as "fruit".

  Who is building THAT house?  Certainly not God.  The Spirit has nothing to do with those conversions.  What are the fruits of the Spirit?

Galatians 5:22-26
22 Now the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
23 meekness, self-control: against such things there is no law.
24 Now those of Christ Jesus crucify the flesh together with its passions, and lusts.
25 If we may be living in spirit, in spirit we may be observing the elements also.
26 We may not become vainglorious, challenging one another, envying one another.

  I can guarantee you, those who claimed to bear "fruit" in the Churches by the conversions they made bore little in the way of this truly spiritual fruit.  Indeed, many of them "challenged one another" and "envied one another".  I can attest that it was not for God these conversions were made, for but self glorification and selfish ambition.

  The true Ecclesia of God IS made of God's own hands.  Whoever comes into the Body of Christ is called there.

Ephesians 1:3-4
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Who blesses us with every spiritual blessing among the celestials, in Christ,
4 according as He chooses us in Him before the disruption of the world, we to be holy and flawless in His sight,

You cannot convert someone by your own power.  A person is a member of the Body of Christ if God has chosen that person.  And that person was chosen before the Garden of Eden was even a mote in God's eye.

1 Corinthians 3:4-11
4 For whenever anyone may be saying, "I, indeed, am of Paul," yet another, "I, of Apollos," will he not be fleshly?
5 What, then, is Apollos? Now what is Paul? Servants are they, through whom you believe, and as the Lord gives to each.
6 I plant, Apollos irrigates, but God makes it grow up.
7 So that, neither is he who is planting anything, nor he who is irrigating, but God Who makes it grow up.
8 Now he who is planting and he who is irrigating are for one thing. Yet each will be getting his own wages according to his own toil.
9 For God's fellow workers are we. God's farm, God's building, are you.
10 According to the grace of God which is being granted to me, as a wise foreman I lay a foundation, yet another is building on it. Yet let each one beware how he is building on it.
11 For other foundation can no one lay beside that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.

Again, we are God's building.  We may work on it, but ultimately everything we do is besides the point - it is God himself who will add to the building and make it grow.  There is so much in this that one could study for hours and hours and never reach it's limit on the study of the Body of Christ.  It is God's building and ought to be honored as such.

Lastly Paul warns of foolish philosophy coming into the work of Christ.

1 Corinthians 3:18-20
18 Let no one be deluding himself. If anyone among you is presuming to be wise in this eon, let him become stupid, that he may be becoming wise,
19 for the wisdom of this world is stupidity with God. For it is written, "He is clutching the wise in their craftiness."
20 And again, The Lord knows the reasonings of the wise, that they are vain.

Be certain you are standing on the firm foundation of the Gospel as Christ gave it to Paul.  Any other foundation is shifting sand.


PS.  In case I wasn't clear, my point is this.  Unless a believer's conversion is built on the solid foundation that God gave to Paul, and that person was called by God to believe in the Gospel of Grace, that conversion is in vain.  All the baptism, and all the "prayers asking Jesus into my heart" is all for naught unless the person understands and believes in the very foundation God gave Paul.  No one can give a believer that faith but God.

That's what vanity is.  Believing, to no effect.  If you have questions and I'm not clear enough, PLEASE ask me.

Friday, July 26, 2013

A Workman Not Ashamed

  So, I missed posting yesterday.  Not because I lacked anything to say, but I was on the go, busy the entire day.  For once I was nowhere near my computer but working in a different office suite instead, measuring out the entire suite so I could draft it in AutoCAD.

  Then as soon as I got home, I got busy taking apart a bed we had in our spare room, and moved it to the main bedroom.  We have taken apart our king sized bed and replaced it with the queen.  The idea is to turn the spare bedroom into an office, and the basement living room into... well... a living room.

  At the moment the basement room is an office/media room/excercise room/wine room

  Not exactly a great way to sell the house.  So I'm slowly packing things in the basement living room.  I have 2 cases of wine to bottle before I can put away all the wine equipment.  A desk to take apart and move into the office room.

   Needless to say, every night I get home I've been busy working away, slowly packing things, moving things and cleaning things.  I'm usually a sweaty mess by 7 o clock, which is around the time I stop so I have time to rest and unwind before I head to bed.

The Source of Truth

  I recently got into a discussion in a forum regarding suffering.  The responses I got were... ridiculous.  As I was discussing the reason for suffering to people, I discovered many of these "believers" rather than having beliefs that found their source in the gospel, instead had philosophies that had more in common with eastern religions than anything that was actually taught in the Bible.

   It baffled me.  These, good people, who love the idea of grace are teaching something that is so far from anything Jesus established.  To me, this is truly dangerous.  Even, if I dare say it, demonic.  Granted, not everything we do is laid out in the Bible.  Yet when it comes to doctrine, if the Bible says something different, we ought to be very careful in how we proceed.

2 Timothy 2:15-18 

15 Endeavor to present yourself to God qualified, an unashamed worker, correctly cutting the word of truth.
16 Yet from profane prattlings stand aloof, for they will be progressing to more irreverence,
17 and their word will spread as gangrene, of whom are Hymeneus and Philetus,
18 who swerve as to truth, saying that the resurrection has already occurred, and are subverting the faith of some.

   Paul himself does not mince words in regards to this, he begins by calling these philosophies "Profane prattlings' and ends with the final result being "subverting the faith".

  For this reason, we need to know the word of God all the more.  Continually testing these doctrines and philosophies against the scriptures.  Most importantly against the gospel that Paul taught, which is our gospel today.

Ephesians 6:13

13 Therefore take up the panoply of God that you may be enabled to withstand in the wicked day, and having effected all, to stand.
14 Stand, then, girded about your loins with truth, with the cuirass of righteousness put on,
15 and your feet sandaled with the readiness of the evangel of peace;
16 with all taking up the large shield of faith, by which you will be able to extinguish all the fiery arrows of the wicked one.

  The word of truth is our protection.

1 Thess 5:21

21 Yet be testing all, retaining the ideal.
22 From everything wicked to the perception, abstain.
23 Now may the God of peace Himself be hallowing you wholly; and may your unimpaired spirit and soul and body be kept blameless in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ!

   Be very careful of people who "spiritualize" the word of God.  In the majority, the word is to be taken literally, unless the context is obviously meant to be a figure of speach, allegory, or symbolical.  Those who alter the word of God to fit their philosophies do so at their own peril.

And one last word from Paul;

2 Tim 3:1-7

1 Now this know, that in the last days perilous periods will be present,
2 for men will be selfish, fond of money, ostentatious, proud, calumniators, stubborn to parents, ungrateful, malign,
3 without natural affection, implacable, adversaries, uncontrollable, fierce, averse to the good,
4 traitors, rash, conceited, fond of their own gratification rather than fond of God;
5 having a form of devoutness, yet denying its power.
6 These, also, shun. For of these are those who are slipping into homes and are leading into captivity little women, heaped with sins, being led by various lusts and gratifications,
7 always learning and yet not at any time able to come into a realization of the truth.
With all love and grace,


Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Sympathy for Judas

My whole life I've looked at Judas and pitied him.

I mean, can you imagine a more hopeless human being?  One who was foreordained to betray Jesus.  Who was instrumental in the operation of Calvary, and according to the Christian religion is eternally doomed.

 Not so.

 Understanding the Salvation of All, has stretched wide the bonds of God's grace.  Not even the worst of Sinners, or the most heinous ones in history will stand outside the boundaries of God's grace.  You can think of Hitler, Genghis Khan, and even Paul the apostle who murdered, killed and ravaged people.

  Even Satan, will at the end of all things, discover how munificent the grace of God is.  Infinite seems such a insufficient word to describe it.

  Please read this PDF that I'm leaving a link to;

  The case of Judas Iscariot is one that so eloquently states the hypocrisy and the inconsistency of Christianity, and lays wide open the beautiful heart of God as demonstrated in Christ Jesus our savior.


Hurry up and wait...

  So last night I got to packing.  My basement is a bit of a disaster area right now.  We're trying to pack things away and declutter the house to get it ready to go on the market.  At the moment, I'm not too focused on purging things.  I just want to get it put away and out of sight so we can turn our house into a bit of a "Show Home" atmosphere.  I worked up quite a sweat last night packing, moving and sorting things out.

  Pardon me if I don't write alot of "spiritual" things on here right now.  I'm much too focused on getting this stuff done.  I can understand why they say moving is one of the top stressors.  I hate doing this, it's a lot of work.  This Saturday I'm going to be replacing the shingles on the roof.  That promises to be a whole day job.

  Hopefully we can have all this done by the long weekend.

  I did want to share one spiritual thing here.  Martin Zender has been doing a series on the book of Hebrews for a little while now.  He put on a spectacular podcast today.  Sometimes, believing in the salvation of all, we get so caught up in the forgiveness and grace we forget that the privledge of believers is ESCAPING the coming indignation. (1 Thess 1:10)

   It WILL happen suddenly and unexpectedly.

Matthew 24:37
37 "For even as the days of Noah, thus shall be the presence of the Son of Mankind.
38 For as they were in those days before the deluge, masticating and drinking and marrying and taking in marriage until the day on which Noah entered into the ark,
39 and did not know till the deluge came and takes them all away, thus shall be the presence of the Son of Mankind.
40 Then two shall be in the field; one is taken along and one left:
41 two grinding at the millstone; one is taken along and one left.
42 Be watching, then, for you are not aware on what day your Lord is coming.
43 "Now that be knowing, for if the householder were aware in what watch the thief is coming, he would watch, and would not let his house be tunneled into.
44 Therefore you also become ready, for in an hour which you are not supposing, the Son of Mankind is coming.

  When it begins it will be swift in reaching it's conclusion;

Revelations 1:1
1 The Unveiling of Jesus Christ, which God gives to Him, to show to His slaves what must occur swiftly; and He signifies it, dispatching through His messenger to His slave John,

  Yes, all of mankind will be saved, but EVERYONE is going to be put over God's almighty knee and disciplined.  Believers have the "privilege" of receiving that discipline now and enjoying the coming eons.  Those who do not believe, will have the horror of dealing with a much harsher discipline on the day of indignation.

   Check out the podcast Martin just did.  It's worth listening to.  It's a fascinating and worthy subject worth studying and learning about.

Here's the link:

Anyways, have a great hump day!


Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Mr Negative...

  So, lately I've had friends and family defriend me, or drop me from their newsfeed on facebook.  I find it amusing that every time they do they say, "You're so negative."

   What amuses me is that it seems to be such a catchall phrase.  It's so ambiguous as to mean almost nothing.  It were better if they said, "Well, what you said here about ____ offends me." Then that's something we could work on.

   Going around and saying, "Well you're just so negative."  It gets a little worn out.

   I've tried being all sunshine and rainbows on FB, but it's absolutely exhausting.  If I have to update my FB about every frigging exciting thing that happened in my day.  I think I'd lose alot more friends than I have in the last month or two.

   Seriously, I actually DO turn off news feeds on these people.  The people who have to post every damn picture they find on the web.  Write about every frakking meal they eat.  And good god, it goes on and on.

  I COULD post, "Yay!  I packed my first box for our impending move."

  or how about "AWESOME!  I fragged 10 zombies in Left 4 Dead"

  OR even, "Great! I finished my first drawing today and it's only 8 o clock, 25 more to go! Way to go me!"

  Such incipient positivity would be overwhelming, exhausting and eventually as annoying as a 2 year old screeching through the house on full volume.

  Look - when I post, I usually post because I find it significant to me.  Yes, it may not have been a rainbow that fell out of my ass, but at least it's not foofery which some people spend oodles of time on FB posting.

  I try to shy away from politics, and for the most part, I succeed.  It does bother me, from to time, when I see such buffoonery from politicians who understand nothing about the realities of... Copyright, Patents, Piracy and Internet usage.  I guess those are my hot buttons when it comes to politics... Throw in some fiscal responsibility in there and I either post about it, or quickly drop it and try to forget about it, because it pisses me off.

   I know, I know.  I need to let it go most of the time.  This Eon is not where I belong and the one to come is going to be great and glorious.  And really - I try most of the time to focus on that.

   It's hard though.  Particularly when you live in a world where the internet is everywhere and you have some asshole in government who knows nothing about how it functions - considering how to royally butcher it.  The thing is, this is really amusing, every time some wanker tries to mess up the internet, the internet community usually finds a route around it.

    So I guess all my fury about it is... insignificant in the end.  But it still bugs me.

   I guess I'm still working toward what Paul has exhorted of us in

Phillipians 4:6-8
6 Do not worry about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God,
7 and the peace of God, that is superior to every frame of mind, shall be garrisoning your hearts and your apprehensions in Christ Jesus.
8 For the rest, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is grave, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is agreeable, whatever is renowned -- if there is any virtue, and if any applause, be taking these into account.

  I'm getting better at it.  Letting go and trusting that God is in control is a lifelong exercise I'm still trying to master.  Some days I do better at it than others.  Yet even in THIS, God is controlling all things.

   Thats what I love about following Christ.  Being a believer.  Is trusting that ALL things are of God.

2 Corinthians 5:18
18 Yet all is of God, Who conciliates us to Himself through Christ, and is giving us the dispensation of the conciliation,

   Now THAT is news worth posting on Facebook.


Monday, July 22, 2013


Life has suddenly gotten very busy and very chaotic.  It's funny how quickly life can change on a dime.  We're in the process of getting our house ready for sale.  I'd like to have it ready by next week, but Jana wants a bit more time than that... we'll see how it goes.

  After discovering that realtors take a HUGE chunk in commission, we're going to try and sell on our own.  I'm loathe to give up any of my equity, especially $14,000 to realtors.  We especially need the money for our next place.

  So, yesterday, I pulled a ton of stuff out of storage.  I'm trying to convince my wife that right now we just need to declutter and get the house in selling shape.  Who gives a shit about what's in storage just pack what we don't need and get it shoved away until moving time.

  My dad came down this weekend and put a beautiful gate up for the entryway of our property.  He even did a ton of work on the yard and the place looks gorgeous now.  Hell, I almost don't want to move now.

  So - lots going on.

  I've been reading this book called "The Great Omission" I had bought it because it sounded like a good book.  It touted itself as a book on Biblical Marriage and what Christianity has omitted from marriage.

  To my surprise it was about Polygamy.

  Yes, scandalous, awful, terrible stuff.  I had never considered what the Bible had to say on the practice of polygamy.  Ever since I've read it though, there have been conversations the have come up, not imitated by me, regarding the subject of polygamy.  After having read this though, I can certainly see it's merits.

  In a world where the female population is higher than the male.  Men on average die sooner than women, then there are some percentage of the male population who are gay, and then others who are completely unsuited to marriage due to mental illness or complete incapability of caring for someone other than themselves (hells angel biker dudes?  I dunno.)

   Suddenly it becomes very obvious that if you're going to be a good "Christian" woman, you stand a very good chance of dying a spinster.  Lessee, no sex before marriage, has to be a Christian dude, and never married before....

  You're looking for a unicorn sister.  And you stand a VERY good chance of dying before ever finding him.  I know that sounds harsh but lets be honest here.  Many of the Christianized ideas of dating and marriage are completely catholic fables.

  However in a polygamous society, men would not have to divorce their wives in order to marry another woman (provided she approves of her).  Fewer children would grow up without fathers.  And for the women, they would have a co-worker in the chores of the home.  A companion for them in every activity.  Even more than that - when the husband passes, they are not alone in their grief.

  Anyways, it's a fascinating study, there is much in the Bible that is PRO-polygamy.  In fact, there is no prohibition anywhere in the NT or the OT regarding polygamy.  There are even passages referring to God as being a polygamous husband.

  Isn't that amazing?

  Yes, I realize there are cults centered around polygamy but that is an aberration for polygamy.  84% of the world's population practices polygamy.  African tribes, Muslim nations, Hindu nations, and other cultures consider polygamy normal.  It is the westernized, countries where "Christianity" is the norm, that monogamy is practiced.  And that - perhaps to the detriment of a good many people.

  It is something worth studying and learning about.  Particularly in America where open marriages are becoming more common-place.  And, honestly, is America all that different from those polygamous nations?  A good chunk of America already practices a form of polygamy.  They take one wife, divorce her and then take another wife, get tired of her and divorce her... and so on down the line.  Sequential Polygamy is what it's called.  Why not take care of all those wives, and their children at once?

  Oh that's right... The church calls it a sin.  SO much better to put those wives and their children out on their own and move onto the next girl.

  That's what good christians do.


Friday, July 19, 2013

Think of these things...

  Well, I'm still getting used to the drug my doctor gave me for my migraines.  Lets just say last night was rough.  I didn't sleep too well, and when I got up at 4 the room was spinning again.

  Fortunately when I got up at 6 for work, it settled down to something manageable once more.  Right now my sight is working properly again, no spinning for me.  Having that come back unexpectedly at 4am though... was unpleasant.

   My writing my get to be a bit sporadic for a bit now.  My wife and I are trying to get our house ready to go on the market by next weekend.  She's getting a little stressed, there's so much to do.  I will do my best to help her as I can, hopefully we can meet our target.  If not, we might have to delay a little.  I'd rather not though.

  Anyways, onto other things.


  Good news; the mortgage is nearly up on this temporal home of ours on earth.  

Matthew 24:35-36
35 Heaven and earth shall be passing by, yet My words may by no means be passing by.
36 Now, concerning that day and hour no one is aware, neither the messengers of the heavens, nor the Son; except the Father only.

  I can't wait.  The existence to come has so much more to offer than the present one.  In fact, we who are in the Body of Christ have an even greater expectation than the jewish nation that Jesus originally came to.  Paul often wrote about this in his letters.  It is our hope, our expectation, our calling and the very thing that should give us heart while we suffer in this present eon. 

1 Corinthians 15:51
51 Lo! a secret to you am I telling! We all, indeed, shall not be put to repose, yet we all shall be changed,
52 in an instant, in the twinkle of an eye, at the last trump. For He will be trumpeting, and the dead will be roused incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal put on immortality.

 When Paul writes this, he's telling us a secret.  Something that even Jesus hasn't shared with anyone.  What Paul is averring has never been shared before.

  Some of us will die, that is sure.  However some will yet be alive when Jesus comes to snatch us away.  When he does, even to those who are in death, it will happen as fast as it takes your eyes to move back and forth across this screen.  The change will be that instantaneous.  That awesome!

  These mortal bodies full of ache, pains, and surprises will finally be shucked off and one that is permanent and immortal will take it's place!  No more sickness, no pain, no death...  This is so grand that I can barely fathom it!  And gives me every reason to endure for the sake of this hope.

1 Thess 4:15
15 For this we are saying to you by the word of the Lord, that we, the living, who are surviving to the presence of the Lord, should by no means outstrip those who are put to repose,
16 for the Lord Himself will be descending from heaven with a shout of command, with the voice of the Chief Messenger, and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ shall be rising first.
17 Thereupon we, the living who are surviving, shall at the same time be snatched away together with them in clouds, to meet the Lord in the air. And thus shall we always be together with the Lord.
18 So that, console one another with these words.

Paul writes again of this miraculous event.  That should console us no matter what trials we face.  Can you imagine?  Walking down the streets one day and hearing the voice of the Lord calling from heaven.  COMMANDING you to be with him?  All believers at ONCE, dead AND alive, meeting in the air.  Flying through space to be with our savior.

  If that doesn't console you - then I don't know what else can.

1 Corinthians 2:6-10
6 Yet wisdom are we speaking among the mature, yet a wisdom not of this eon, neither of the chief men of this eon, who are being discarded,
7 but we are speaking God's wisdom in a secret, wisdom which has been concealed, which God designates before -- before the eons, for our glory,
8 which not one of the chief men of this eon knows, for if they know, they would not crucify the Lord of glory.
9 But, according as it is written, That which the eye did not perceive, and the ear did not hear, and to which the heart of man did not ascend -- whatever God makes ready for those who are loving Him.
10 Yet to us God reveals them through His spirit, for the spirit is searching all, even the depths of God.

If you grasp this, believe in Christ and the gospel Paul preached, the secrets of the coming ages are being revealed to you.  Even in these pages.  This is what is to come!! 

Study this, learn it, yearn for it, and it will give you great joy, great peace, and GREAT ANTICIPATION for this is the last evil eon.  What remains when this one ends is nothing short of truly beautiful and amazing ages to come!!!

Travis Penner

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Cleaning House

So my wife and I have our hands full.  We've accumulated so much stuff in our house we are now putting things together for a garage sale.  I'm not sure which weekend we'll do it, probably August long weekend.

I'm pulling out bins, and looking through shelves and trying to minimize the amount of junk we have.

I also visited the doctor yesterday.  Good news, the dizziness and balance issues are not a permanent thing.  She got all the blood work and everything that the ER did on me in her file.  I'm now on a drug that is supposed to reduce the number of migraines I get.  Which will also help me with my balance issues.

Unfortunately, today I'm SO tired.  My mind is a little foggy so it's hard to stay awake and put thoughts together.

I don't have quite as much to say today as a result.

However, I'm studying some stuff on my own.  Doing some reading, and continually challenging my belief structure and preconceived notions that the Church has often reinforced.  I have literally scared myself some of the things I've come to question.  I'm holding to the belief that no matter how treacherous   How scary, or challenging a truth is.  The truth WILL set you free.

John 8:31-32
31 Jesus, then, said to the Jews who have believed Him, "If ever you should be remaining in My word, you are truly My disciples,
32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will be making you free."

Truth is a light in darkness that brings illumination.  For eyes that have sat in darkness so long, light can be so extremely painful.  Yet once those eyes adjust, what is revealed often brings change.

I am discovering that that change may not always be manifestly obvious; but it brings understanding.  It tells me who I am, what my role is, and eventually often brings peace that only the confidence of clarity can bring.


Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Back in the Saddle Again

Sorry I wasn't on yesterday.  Apparently our internet was out here and I wasn't able to get online.

Anyways, I'm mostly back to normal again.  My balance is a wee bit wobbly, but every day my vision and my balance seems to be getting better and better.

I'll be going to see the doctor today as well though.  Let's hope this isn't anything permanent and it'll get back to NORMAL firm... stable... everything again.

Lessons in Suffering

So...  While I was sick, I was thinking about suffering.  What the Bible says about suffering.  What suffering means.  Why we suffer.  And so on.

Colossians 1:24
24 I am now rejoicing in my sufferings for you, and am filling up in my flesh, in His stead, the deficiencies of the afflictions of Christ, for His body, which is the ecclesia

As amazing as it sounds Paul writes that there were deficiencies in the afflictions of Christ.  Can you imagine that?  The 6 hour torture fest and it was still deficient?

But that's what Paul says, and this is the reason the Body of Christ goes through suffering - we suffer in this present day instead of Christ himself in order to make up those deficiencies.  So even 2000 years LATER, the Body of Christ is STILL suffering for the sake of the world.  This is simply amazing to me.

Believers need to rejoice in suffering, no matter what kind it is, whether it is illness, persecution, betrayal, or poverty, whatever form it takes - that suffering is added TO the Body of Christ.

I am convinced that each person's suffering is unique to their own person.  Look at Helen Keller for instance, she grew up without sight or hearing.  For me that would be torture unendurable, yet she transformed it into an amazing ministry to praise God from.

I believe God creates us, his broken vessels, to glorify him in our own unique ways.  Our suffering is unique to how he has created us, and what we can do.  There is no suffering that is any less than someone else's.  For someone suffering could be as "silly" as losing their car keys, for another it could be as major as being told they have cancer.

I'm using hyperbole, but my point is this; God has created a set of circumstances in advance for us to glorify him.  Whatever those circumstances are, they are no less significant than another believer's.  Whether in great wealth or great pain, it is GOD who sets out his creation to his glory.

Ephesians 2:10
10 For His achievement are we, being created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God makes ready beforehand, that we should be walking in them.

God always has a purpose in everything he does.  Whether it is immediately clear or not, you can be sure his purposes are at work in your suffering.  Be faithful, and trust - this suffering and trial that you endure is to YOUR benefit and will result in not only glorifying him, but glorifying him THROUGH you.

James 1:12 
Happy is the man who is enduring trial, for, becoming qualified, he will be obtaining the wreath of life, which He promises to those loving Him.

This may be written to the Israelites, but the message applies to us as well.  There IS great reward for enduring suffering.

Romans 8:28 
Now we are aware that God is working all together for the good of those who are loving God, who are called according to the purpose

ALL things... Even if it's stubbing your toe on a chair.  ALL things are working together for the good of those who are called by God!!

I hope this gives you peace, and great joy.  Do not despair, whatever your circumstances.

2 Corinthians 4:17
For the momentary lightness of our affliction is producing for us a transcendently transcendent eonian burden of glory,

Imagine!!! A Glory so great that it is a BURDEN.  

Peace, and God bless!


Saturday, July 13, 2013

I'm baaaack!!!

OMG... Seriously, I have been away several days, but not by choice.  On Tuesday, I went to work feeling moderately discombobulated.  I felt like I had just stepped onto drydock after years at sea and was having trouble finding my landlegs.

  Wednesday morning, I woke up and my bedroom was spinning.  I shit you not.  This has got to have been the worse feeling I've ever had.  If you can't see straight, you can't drive, you can't read, you can't use a computer, you can't do ANYTHING.  I spent almost all of Wednesday lying in bed.  Sleeping and fortunately, I was able to use my phone to cruise FB and watch a little TV.  It seems a tiny screen, while lying in bed was something I COULD keep my eyes focused on.

  Thursday, I was moderately better but still seriously freaked out.  We went to the ER, just in case it was anything serious.  4 hours, 2 bags of Saline, 3 packets of drugs IV'd into me and I was still a landlubber with a terrible case of sea sickness.  After the ER visit I was wound up but totally exhausted.  A horrible horrible night's sleep ensued.  By early morning, I was groaning and crying and wishing that God would either remove this from me or strike me dead.

  One gets seriously out of sorts when sleep deprived and moderately eff'd in the head.  So... I was no exception.

  I finally did fall into an exhausted sleep, after which I felt a little bit more right in the head.  I lay on the couch most of the day.  Sick to death of watching TV.  I finally attempted some reading, which helped a little.  I fasted all day, which I believe helped alot more.  By mid afternoon, no wife or kid around, I was going batshit crazy.  I vacuumed the house, and that was the end of my strength.

   Once my wife and daughter got home, I visited with them a little and by evening they went out to visit friends and I went back to sleep for a half an hour.  That helped bring my strength up some again.

  Although by 9 I was thoroughly exhausted and needed a deep natural sleep.  I took some pills and went to bed.  For the first half of the night I was in a sort of twilight sleep.  Asleep, but not completely.  Finally by 1am exhaustion completely took over and I fell into a deep sleep of natural dreams and complete relaxation.

  I woke up this morning and my vertigo is 90% gone.  I still feel a little woozy, like you do after a couple drinks on an empty stomach, but aside from that... I'm blogging on here, bottling my beer. (which I hope I didn't let go for too too long) And will meet wife for lunch today at her work.

   Thank GOD the worst of this vertigo seems to have passed.  I'll still take it easy but I'm SO looking forward to being back at work on Monday.

  I'll write more but I thought I'd fill you in on what's happened... I haven't fallen off the face of the planet... it only felt like it for 3 days. :P


Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Every Man's Bullshit

Good morning!

  So all weekend long I fought brutal migraines.  Like godzilla stomping around in my head sized migraines.  By monday morning it was starting to go down but I was completely exhausted.  I slept alot and, well, I didn't get a chance to blog.

  I was still tired most of the day.  In some ways, fighting a migraine is like getting into a ring with a boxer and you keep getting KO'd... Well, that was me.  Even today I'm still a little dizzy and discombobulated.

  So I haven't really done much reading.  I have had a few discussions on Facebook.  Listened to some podcasts, and read a really frakking FANTASTIC newsletter by Martin Zender.

   About a decade ago a friend of mine sent me this book "Every Man's Battle" which, at the time, seemed inspired by God.  Looking back, I realize it was just another link in a chain of bondage that was being placed around men.
Everyman's bullshit

  Good god, men are so emasculated in Churches today.  They've become like those little puppies that you see elderly folks getting, and dressing them up.  They're great lapdogs, but they're definitely not Lassie, Scooby, or any MANLY type dog.  Good for putting on your lap, and shitting in your garden but not good for much else.
Today's Churchified man

  These bullshit books cranked out by Christianity telling men to become these asexual, tame beings is just so perverse.  Guess what folks?  God made the sexes.  God made SEX.  Yes, God made Penises and Vaginas and even MASTURBATION.

  Ok, I'll wait a minute while you calm down and fan yourself into composure.


So seriously.  This book teaches men to stop watching R rated movies, "bounce" your eyes away from that lustful look receptionist with the low top there.  And good god, we can't even get a copy of Maxim anymore or we might roast in hell and spurn our wives because of it.


Anyways, the newsletter Martin wrote was awesome, I can't say enough about it, it really does break down the bullshit.  You can find it here;

It's well worth reading.  He's even coming out with a book on the subject, which I can't wait to see.

  I've also order more books of Martin's as well as Clyde's from and am looking forward to their imminent arrival.

  Anyways, god bless, have a fantastic week.  I'll be back tomorrow with more to chew on.


Friday, July 5, 2013

Shooting from the Hip

  For once, I really don't have a topic on the top of my mind today.  I'm still getting back into the swing of things after being in vacation mode.

  Last night I got home and realized I had to clean my back yard of my dog's shit.  Well, I turned the corner into the back yard of my house and realized the grass was over a foot tall.  Nevermind finding my dog's shit, I couldn't even see the lawn!!!

   Spent over a half an hour cutting through that swath.  My lawn mower cut out a couple times, I had to go through it all slow and repeatedly.  At least I found the shit... after I mowed it pretty good.

  I could have it worse though.  There's so many people in High River right now who don't even have a lawn to go back to, much less mow.  I keep reading about the disaster they have to return to.  So many are being let back to their homes now, there's virtually nothing left.

  Perhaps water is worse than fire in some ways.  With fire everything's gone except the foundation, and you begin anew.  Right now, even the foundation is suspect.

  I've never had to deal with this kind of thing.  I can't even imagine what they're going through.  I have co-workers who lived there who are now bunking at their family's homes.  I'm reading of people who are now camping out in trailers, and temporarily being sheltered in hotels.

  It's intense.

  And yes, I could give you Bible verses, doctrine and explanations to help put this all in a spiritual mindset.  There's nothing wrong with that, but I don't think that's what's needed at this time.  Certainly not while so many are grieving.  Some have even lost their lives in these floodings.

  The best thing I could possibly share from the Bible is this;

  When Lazarus died, and Jesus came home to his friends and family all mourning his death.  He did not wax "spiritual" to them and tell them of a better future that awaited, or drone on about how this was God's plan or any of these things.  He did the most uncharicteristic thing you would expect the Son of God to do... The very man who could command life, death, and everything in between...

Jesus weeps.

  There can be no better example for the man of God.  When people hurt... hurt with them.  Even cry with them.  Life may be temporary, we may be headed for glory - but it does not diminish the significance of our experiences.  Nor does it remove the need for those of who can, to comfort those who need it.

John 11:32-45

32 Mary, then, as she came where Jesus was, perceiving Him, falls at His feet, saying to Him, "Lord, if Thou wert here, my brother would not have died!"
33 Jesus, then, as He perceived her lamenting and the Jews coming with her lamenting, mutters in spirit, and disturbs Himself.
34 And He said, "Where have you placed him?" They are saying to Him, "Lord, come and see."
35 Jesus weeps.
36 The Jews, then, said, "Lo! how fond He was of him!"
37 Yet some of them said, "Could not this One Who opens the eyes of the blind man, also make it that this man should not be dying?"
38 Jesus, then, again muttering in Himself, is coming to the tomb. Now it was a cave, and a stone was laid on it.
39 Jesus is saying, "Take away the stone." Martha, the sister of the deceased, is saying to Him, "Lord, he is already smelling, for it is the fourth day."
40 Jesus is saying to her, "Did I not say to you that, if ever you should be believing, you should be seeing the glory of God?"
41 They, then, take away the stone. Yet Jesus lifts up His eyes and said, "Father, I thank Thee that Thou hearest Me.
42 Now I was aware that Thou art hearing Me always, but because of the throng standing about I said it, that they should be believing that thou dost commission Me."
43 And, saying these things, He clamors with a loud voice, "Lazarus! Hither! Out!"
44 And out came he who had died, bound feet and hands with winding sheets, and his countenance had been bound about with a handkerchief. Jesus is saying to them, "Loose him and let him go!"
45 Many of the Jews, then, who come to Mary and gaze at what Jesus does, believe in Him.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Catching Up on Things

  I'm finally back home from vacation.  I left for 9 days in Vancouver with my wife's family.  9 days I really needed, to get away from work.

  I love the company I work for, and most of the time I even enjoy what I do.  However, I find after a few months I need time to take a break or I burn out.  Working in Civil drafting takes alot of focus and attention to detail.  And I find, if I don't get some time to get away from it for a bit, I start to get sloppy, careless and frustrated.

  So 9 days away was awesome.  I finished a game, BioShock: Infinite.  I finished the Outcast book and started on "Salvation for All" which really hammers out, scripturally, alot of what I've already talked about on this blog.

  I also go to visit with an old friend, who's all grown up now and has taken some hard knocks of her own to become a mature, and balanced woman.  Who's working towards a fantastic future of her own.

  I got to relax with my beautiful little girl who thought it was great fun to surprise daddy and dump a buck of water all over him and run away screeching, as I sat outside in the sun relaxing.  I got to have naps.  I like naps.

  I even went to "The Man of Steel" with my father in law.  We also got thoroughly spoiled by her parents, so we decided we would spoil both of us by buying an air conditioner for us to use in the bedroom at night.  Which we left with them so they can stay cool the rest of the summer.

  I've also been reading Wil Wheaton's book "Just A Geek" and it really got me thinking about regrets.

  I honestly think people who have hit their 40s and claim not to have any regrets are either delusional, lying, or extremely sheltered.

  It's one thing to have regrets, it's another to be at peace with them.

  When I left the cult back in 2004 I had already spent 2 years obsessing with my regrets.  I had cheated on my girlfriend by kissing another girl in a bar.  It was stupid, I know, and I also made the mistake of trusting a friend with my confession - whom spread it throughout the male membership in the church and created one long sordid story which ended up in us breaking up... messily.  Months later.

  I fought hard to win her back to no avail.  After that I spent alot of time obsessing over that whole thing.

  Even after I got married I obsessed over my regrets. I would lie in bed sometimes wishing I could go back to 1998 and never join the church.  Or go back to 2001 and break up with my girlfriend then, so it was a clean break.  And then leave the Church.  I replayed the reels of my life, over and over again in my head.  Wishing I could redo this thing in 1996, or that thing in 2000.

  Ultimately, I was angry, unhappy, smoking, and miserable.  What a way to live.

  It wasn't until recently, not long after Cassidy was born that I began to come to the appreciation that my life is actually not all that bad.  That my regrets were not all insurmountable.

  I finally learned to embrace them when I came to the realization that ALL is of God, and that God ultimately orchestrated every single event in my life for my benefit.

  In learning from the harshness of the cult, what real grace, freedom and love is like.  So that I can express those things to others.

  Today, I live a life without living IN regret.

  What a freedom, and peace that gives me!

2 Corinthians 5:18
18 Yet all is of God, Who conciliates us to Himself through Christ, and is giving us the dispensation of the conciliation,

Romans 8:28-29
28 Now we are aware that God is working all together for the good of those who are loving God, who are called according to the purpose
29 that, whom He foreknew, He designates beforehand, also, to be conformed to the image of His Son, for Him to be Firstborn among many brethren.

Thank you, to those of you who have shared their appreciation for my writing.  I will do my best to keep on consistently posting... and growing in my writing as I do so.

God bless!