Thursday, December 20, 2007
My good friend Mr. Justin Holzgrove is now an official "published author."
For all of you wanting to read his first major published piece, you need to do nothing more than drop 3 quarters in your nearest Mason County Journal purchasing spot and open up to the advent message.
Posted by Ryan at 10:15 AM
I know, I know... you people are sick of hearing about Ron Paul... I try and keep it to a minimum. But this video is just too hilarious to pass up. It's pretty sad at how obvious the news casters are TRYING to push one candidate, when on the other hand it's just as obvious who the people actually support. I thought the supporters in this video did a GREAT job, they didn't scream and shout and allowed the newscaster to do her job, but at the same time, I think they made a pretty powerful statement.
Every time I watch this movie, it makes me laugh, and makes me encouraged to know just how much support Ron really has, even if the "polls" tell us otherwise.
Posted by Ryan at 9:50 AM
Sunday, December 16, 2007
So what does our illustrious presidential candidate Mike Huckabee bring to the table? Why nothing other than the very thing that landed Mike Vick in jail for 23 months. It turns out his son hung a dog, slit it's throat, and then stoned it to death. It was reported to authorities but because he was the governers son no charges were filed.
I am not one for digging to much into someone's family, you can't control who you are related to. But having your son (not some weird strange distant relative) get busted for doing the same thing that Mike Vick did, and then using your influence in politics to have the charges totally dropped... well thats pretty shady in my book.
For more on what happened you can get most of the info here: http://digbysblog.blogspot.com/2007/12/thats-my-boy-by-digby-im-not-big-on.html and it contains links to multiple sources backing this story up.
I've been saying all along the Huckster has benefited from not being put under the spot light, turns out that as soon as people start investigating him we find out he is an economic socialist with a sketchy family history... no thanks.
Posted by Ryan at 7:37 PM
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Friday, December 07, 2007
So it's not often I refrain from posting, or even bother to think about what I post. Most of the time whatever hits this blog is a pretty raw and unfiltered "from my brain to the keyboard" connection. Thats why sometimes I go back, read what I have wrote, and immediately put my head in my hands and wonder what drugs I was on when I wrote THAT post.
This post is different.
I have spent 3 days thinking on this, contemplating this, and really trying to wrap my brain on how I want to communicate my feelings. We will see how this goes.
So the other day Justin was down helping me with my truck and as we were getting to try it one last time, I made a comment that we should pray for the truck, and then in jest I said that HE should be the one to pray since he is a pastor and obviously God would hear his prayer better than mine (again, this was in jest, bad theology is bad).
I am going to have to paraphrase because I don't remember the exact words he used, but it was along the lines of "I don't think prayer should be treated like rubbing the voodoo rabbit's foot" implying that sending a prayer up to God was merely like some sort of "good luck charm" in this situation. We had a brief conversation about sovereignty and I think there was some really good conversation to be had, but it was raining, my truck wasn't working, I was on a break from work, and we had a loooong way to push the truck. So sadly the situation went mostly ignored.
But I went home that day and thought about what Justin said, and for the last 3 days it has really stuck in my head. I have come to the conclusion: I couldn't disagree more with Justin's comments.
I know Justin believes in prayer, and believes in the miraculous power of God, that isn't the issue, I think the issue probably (and I am hoping to elicit some response and discussion here, so hopefully he can correct me if I am wrong here) comes down to what is and isn't "frivolous" prayer. I know people pray for medical healing, believing that God can heal a sick child/parent/friend etc (Jeremiah 30:17), and I know people pray if they have a loved one that is lost, etc. So why would we say "God can heal people" (either via miraculous healing or via doctors insight) and "God can find my lost child" (again either by bringing the child in to safety or by leading rescue workers to find him) but in the same breadth, we dismiss "praying for healing of a vehicle" or "praying to help me find my lost keys."
I believe that God is all powerful, nothing is out of his realm. I also believe that unlike us, issues never tax him. So the thinking that "I don't want to bother God with this little thing" is wrong, nothing bothers God (1 John 5:14). If he had the time to count the number of hairs on my head or grains of sand on a beach or stars in the sky (all things we know he knows), I am pretty sure finding my keys isn't a big stretch. If he can heal the blind, make the lame walk, and cure leprosy I am pretty sure whatever is wrong with my man made engine isn't going to befuddle him.
And I think there is very real value in small prayers or as I my wife would deem it "praying selfishly." (2 Kings 20:5-6) [Although on this note, we must understand that prayer is only answered when we pray in God's will, not ours (James 4:3)] The simple fact is, Christ came and died so that we would have access to the father. Outside of being the ultimate sacrifice, the next biggest thing Christ did was creating a conduit for us to communicate with God the father directly (1 Timothy 2:5). And Christ implores us to communicate with him daily/hourly/minutely/continously (1 Thessalonians 5:17). While I don't believe God is the great "slot machine in the sky" and you just put in a prayer and out pops the prize there is VERY REAL value in communicating with God your hopes, your dreams, your desires, your fears, your concerns, etc. Often times those things are manifested in the little aspects of your daily life.
Back to the original example, my truck. When I am asking for prayer for my truck, I am implying that I have a fear about it not working, and that means I am going to be out both a car and money, which leads to fear about providing for my family and uncertainty over the future. While "fixing my truck" seems like a frivolous thing to us humans and we don't understand why God would be interested in it, what we are really dealing with when praying for things like that we are praying the exact thing God wants us to surrender to him - control (Phillipians 4:6-7).
When you lose your keys and you are frantically running around the house looking for your keys, racking your brain to try and remember where you (or your daughter) left them, if you stop for a minute and offer up a prayer to God, what exactly are you praying for there. The prayer might be "God help me find my keys" but since God knows our heart, what exactly does HE see? He sees his child who has feelings of helplessness, frustration, lack of patience, worry, etc... and I don't think it's a stretch of the imagination to think that God hears that prayer as a prayer of "God help me learn patience" or "help me not to worry" or "help me to know you are in control of everything" or a million other lessons that God wants to teach us daily.
is that we are learning to communicate and practicing speaking with him daily. Do I think God ONLY wants to hear how he can help us? Of course not! When Jesus taught his disciples how to pray (Matthew 6:9-13), he taught them to communicate thanks, reverence, and requests. As we learn to come to God with our requests, I also believe we will learn to come to God with both thanks and reverence as well.
I believe that God wants us to be thankful for the frivolous as well (Ephesians 5:20). When I see Maddie take her first step, or speak her first word or any other major milestones I am reminded how much I am thankful to God for this major blessing in my life, and I communicate that to him (as I believe most parents often communicate in prayer to God how thankful they are for their children). But what about when you find a dollar in your pocket or you hit all the green lights, or any other "minor" thing... were those out of God's control? I don't believe so (Revelation 4:11). And as such, I need to be thankful to God for those things as well, and by coming to him with EVERYTHING, no matter how little or insignificant we might think it is, we are teaching ourselves to communicate with our father.
So while those of you out there disagree with me and don't feel like "bothering God" with the little things in life, that is fine, or if you think some things are just too small for God to care about that is fine... but I for one don't think God is EVER bothered by us coming to him and just like nothing is too big for our God, nothing is too small for him either. So I am going to continue to "rub the magic voodoo rabbits foot" and I am going to continue to tell God how thankful I am for the many blessings he bestows on my life.
And when I finally get my head around the fact of just how big God is, not because of how he created all the big things like mountains and rivers and trees and what not, but because of the fact that he has control over all the little things, like where my keys are... I am going to be forced to fall on my knees and marvel at how awesome and powerful God is, fulfilling the last thing God wants us to express to him... reverence (Psalm 147:11).
Posted by Ryan at 8:45 AM
Monday, December 03, 2007
Where to start....
I spent the day answering phone calls and talking to over 400 customers (per my agent stats) explaining to them that we were trying to get the power back on as fast as possible, I didn't get lunch (too busy answering phones) and didn't get to stop talking on the phone until 5:15. Then I immediately went over to the "other side" of the outage center and had to assist them in bringing SCADA back on line since we were re-energizing the sub stations... so of course the craptastic Digi boxes we use didn't come back up which mean I had to drive down to Mason Sub. Shalisa wanted to know when I was going to be home so I thought to myself "Just drive your truck to Mason Sub, and then head home from there."
So I hop in my truck, run down to Mason Sub, hop in the control station, reboot the boxes, call to confirm they did indeed come back up, and hop in my truck to head home. I head out along whatever that front street is downtown that runs right in front of Simpson, I get about 100 feet when I realize I am driving through some pretty serious water, before I realize it the water is LITERALLY coming up over my hood... so I sorta panic and take a left down the next street to try and get out of the puddle... but it's too little too late *cough* *cough* *sputter* *sputter*.... dead truck. So now I am sitting in a puddle... no wait, LAKE in a truck that won't do anything. So I have to open my truck door, luckily the water was only about a half inch BELOW the door line, so no water gets in the truck. I then put the truck in neutral, take off my shoes, hike up my pants, and push my truck 250 feet along the street to get it out of the water... where I have to call my boss and ask him if he will come pick me up.
Of course he immediately CAN'T find me (since you know, downtown Shelton is so big) and I have to call him again and direct me to where I am (in his defense [and mine as to how I ended up in this lake] all of the lights were off downtown so you couldn't see jack crap). He finally shows up and helps me get the truck pushed off to the side of the road. My friend Sam swings by and listens to the truck as I try and start it and tells me my cylinders are all full of water. This isn't a HUGE deal, as I can pull the plugs and then crank it over and it should pump the water out... but it still remains to be seen if that can be done (we decided to abandon it until tomorrow to try). So I had to get a ride home from John. So tomorrow I have to try and take the Santa Fe to work, then tow the truck to the PUD, try and get it fixed, take the Santa Fe home at lunch, pick up Shalisa, ride back so I can take the truck back at the end of work... ugh.
And to top it all off, Tom Brady hasn't thrown any touchdowns and threw an interception, which means I will probably lose this week in fantasy sports... a perfect end to a perfect day.
Ugh, I am ready for this day to be over, hopefully tomorrow will be a bit better. We REALLY need the truck to get fixed... so if people wouldn't mind praying that it gets fixed without trouble tomorrow I would appreciate it.
Posted by Ryan at 7:22 PM
Sunday, December 02, 2007
And obviously looting wood, which I am sure was going to be used for nefarious activities like "heating" and "cooking" and "lighting" is punishable by the complete end to your livelyhood. Also, if were really out for justice, why exactly wasn't the wood returned, instead of, you know, running over it.
I know not all, most, or probably even a minor amount of soldiers act like this, but the simple fact that we have numb nuts like this out in foreign countries representing us is yet another reason we just need to come home.
And we wonder why they don't like us...
Edit: Also, can someone explain to me why they shot the car first? Were they trying to "put it down" or something so it didn't run away? I mean I don't think a few bullet holes are really going to tip the car over in to the "unrepairable" state after it gets run over by a tank.... three times, I am pretty sure it's not gonna be salvagable after that with or without the bullet holes, but thats just a guess.
Edit2: Is my blog getting too "heavy" for regular readers, do I need to get back to blogging about more "life" stuff (as in whats going on in the smith home) vs things that strike me? Lately I have been on a politics rant, not because I am trying to push an agenda, but it's just what I have been interested in... but I also realize not everyone is interested in it and most of you want to see more pictures of Maddie and more whats going on in Shalisa and I's life, and maybe you don't care as much about what is going on in the world and can get that elsewhere. If people would like, I will try and refocus these next few days on more "family" related topics.
Posted by Ryan at 6:27 PM
So we had a bit of snow up here... I built 2 snowman originally, Mr. Snowman and Mr Roof-Santa (he was visiting Maddie outside her window).
Then after that, while Maddie was napping I went out and built Mr. Snow-monster. I had to do it by myself so I couldn't reach my goal of 10 feet... and had to settle for 8 foot 1 inch.
Would love to see other peoples snowman, anyone top 8 foot 1 inch? And next time there is some snow I need a couple of burly men to come over and assist me, I think I have a pretty good system (seriously, engineering marvels should do a show at my house for snowman construction) and I think we could probably do 12 footer (5 foot base, 4 foot middle, 3 foot head) pretty easily if I just had a few more hands. Trying to roll a 5 foot ball by yourself is pretty exhausting.
Posted by Ryan at 2:00 PM