Sunday, May 27, 2007

Junia Charlotte Morrow

I am writing this from the hospital room. Our beautiful daughter has been born. She is a big girl and is 8 lbs, 14 oz. She was born on Saturday at 12:18 PM. More to follow on the event, but here are some pictures.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

The Marker of Confusion...

Sorry, that is not our child, even though I am bit angered that you thought our child would be that awkward looking.

Our daughter is due today and like 90% of all people who get pregnant, the baby has not come on the due day. I am realizing an element of my pettiness and desire to control everything as I have this desire to just have the doctor induce Erica because it would fit better in our lives and then I could finally meet this girl. We have walked probably 15 miles in the last couple days (mostly in malls which is the most depressing experience ever, but on the upside I do know more about fashion, and particularly Madras shorts, than a few days ago, they are VERY in right now) in hopes of helping the baby along out of the cervix. So, no such luck. I have been praying that God would bring the baby soon and also praying that God's will would be done and not mine, but I have this sneaking suspicion that God knows I would prefer my will to be done. It is truly a struggle to desire one thing and hope for the will of God while also hoping that His will is the same as mine.

One final note, which relates to the title of this post, is how oblivious people are if they have not gone through a pregnancy close to others. We were at the eye doctor's office today and the woman asked when Erica was due and she said "today" so the doctor naturally freaked out and pretty much asked us to leave because she didn't want to be in charge of dialing 911 if Erica went into labor. Hmm... Also, I told our realtor today that the baby was due and he asked why we weren't at the hospital and I gently explained that you don't go unless the baby actually arrives.

Well, pray that the baby comes soon and if God tells you His will is something different please tell me even if I get mildly irritated.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Christ is REALLY Victorious!!

Over the past month I have had the wonderful privilege of hearing sermons on the topic of Christus Victor. In conjunction with this profound act of God, my staff pick at the bookstore for the past month has been Gustaf Aulen's Christus Victor. In honor of this rare coming together of all things good and beautiful I thought I might provide some links for any and all who are interested in listening to these sermons. I shall call these my annotated links:
This is my brother-in-laws blog with sermons from the church he pastors and his May 9th sermon is a comparison between the temptation of Jesus and the authority given to the disciples in the Great Comission. I would highly recommend this to you all.
This link will take you to Mars Hill church in Michigan. If you know me at all, you know that I have been rather infatuated with Rob Bell for about the past 5 years and this sermon is the bringing together of 2 wonderful things: Rob Bell and Greg Boyd. Boyd does a masterful job of elucidating the main ideas of Christus Victor in the April 29th sermon. Sit back, relax, and enjoy.
This was a sermon done yesterday at our home church. We attend an amazing Anglican church and this week we were celebrating the ascension and our pastor connected the idea of the ascension to Christus Victor. I really like this church and greatly appreciate its passionate heart to be doers and learners of the Word of God. A bit less refined than Boyd's, but who isn't less thought through than Greg Boyd (feel free to respond if you totally disagree with that statement).

Finally, my friend Ryan told me that his church, Pathways, will be engaging the topic of Christus Victor this coming Sunday. Here is the link where it will be:

If you have thoughts on this topic I'd love to know your reservations or other thoughts (I just noticed that the calculater we use in the bookstore is made by a company called "Victor." If that isn't the sovereignty of God I am baffled). Cheers

Friday, May 18, 2007

Who are you going to vote for? Does it matter?

One of my favorite discussions to have with my friend Ryan are related to politics. If you know Ryan you are well aware that he has serious Mennonite leanings that usually pull him out of the political debate. I struggle a lot with this issue, not least because I graduated with a Political Science major in undergrad and spent a summer in Washington D.C., but I am attempting to determine what the role of Christians should be in that political arena. I truly believe that it must be seen as a double-edged sword that must be understood carefully. On one hand, the Kingdoms of this world, and specifically the United States, is not representative of the Kingdom of God and when it gets misconstrued in that direction we have a serious problem. On the other hand, we have to pay taxes (unless you're like the militia group I was reading about in the latest Jack Reacher novel who avoid taxes, but also stockpile arms and kill lots of people. They have more problems than could be mentioned here. If you are part of a militia group please respond and we can sort through these things.). These tax dollars go to a government and this government sometimes asks my opinion for how to spend that money. In light of that I feel as though I would be remiss to not take advantage of the change to share what I think.

More specifically, I grew up in a home that voted consistently Republican and have been shaped by that, but am in the midst of struggling through that issue. For this blog I want to focus on the main Democratic candidates, Barak and Hillary. Who would you vote for? Why? Is it difficult to get around the abortion issue in the midst of candidates who seem to cry out against the unjust loss of life in the other areas? I looking for help on this...

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

"Killing Floor" and other wonderful novels

I graduated from seminary this past Saturday and it was a joyous occasion. My parents were in town which was excellent and I got to have lunch at P.F. Changs with 11 of my favorite people (I had the double pan fried noodles with beef which was spectacular). Upon graduating and finishing all of the academic requirements necessary for graduation I have been doing what all graduates would do: READING NOVELS. My dad told me about an author named Lee Child. He has written numerous novels that revolve around the character, Jack Reacher. Reacher is a military burn-out who is now a loner, but seems to continually get caught up in fantastic stories of espionage and political suspense. Anyway, I love them. It is so refreshing to read a book without a pen in my hand and a worry that I am going to get tested on the contents (can I get an AMEN!). I am on my third of these books and would highly recommend it for those of you who, like me, spend most of your time in non-fiction books that hurt to read after about ten pages because you can't remember the argument that began 100 pages ago. This is also a friendly and necessary reminder that the biblical story is supposed to be read as a novel in many cases. Reading the stories of Abraham, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Saul, David, Solomon, Jonah, Esther, Ruth, etc, are supposed to be read on the edge of your seat. I truly need to re-discover these texts for the first time in order to truly experience the intrigue and suspense of these stories that are supposed to draw us into the text and, ultimately, closer to God. Praise the Lord for novels.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Just breathe ... it'll be okay George

It's hard to be annoyed at George Steinbrenner anymore, he's just so consistently irritating that if one were to be annoyed each time by his antics I imagine ones life would be considerably shortened. As noted in a previous post, I have personal issues with the New York Yankees, specifically with Derek Jeter (who, by the way, I struck out five times in one game while playing my game cube, and yes, you guessed it, Johan Santana was pitching to him for a complete game shut out against the Yankees). The Yankees just signed Roger Clemens for a ridiculous amount of money (I believe a conservative estimate is that he will be paid $40,000 per pitch). I honestly don't have much against Clemens, other than the fact that he has signed on more than once with the evil empire. I have come to the conclusion that it is time for God to step into this disturbing little world and have the Yanks finish below five hundred. I also believe that the Twins stadium should start sending around an offering plate at each game in hopes of raising enough money to keep Santana at the end of the year. Ok, all for now.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Oh Joy, graduation...

I am three days away from graduating from Denver Seminary. My thoughts right now are filled with immense joy and mixed with a incredible fear over what is to come in the next couple months. Here is my short list of to-dos:

1. Graduate sucessfully
2. "Assist" in the birth of our daughter (i.e. try really hard not to faint)
3. Figure out how to get the contents of our house to Minneapolis soon after the closing of our house on June 25th
4. Find a job that will provide financially for the fam along with feeling like I am being used in a meaningful way (also so we have some sort of income and can qualify for a loan on a home)
5. Locate a house that meets Erica's criteria (lots of character, really cute, built-ins, in the city, built before 1950) and my criteria (won't fall apart and cost lots of money to maintain)
6. Try to re-learn how to be in the same city with family and meet all the many expectations

So, that is my minor whining, but whenever I dwell too long on those realities I am quickly struck with our place in life right now. We "randomly" made it to Denver Seminary where we have met so many friends that we will be exceedingly sad to leave. Erica "randomly" got a job where she can be a worship leader, mentor for young women, drama director, choir director, and use her degree. We "randomly" bought a house out here in a 3 day weekend over 3 years ago that happens to be within 10 minutes of both the seminary and Erica's job. We "randomly" showed up at Mission Hills church and found some of our dearest friends.

Praise God from whom all blessings flow. "Why do you worry?... seek first the Kingdom of GOd and all these things will be added to you!" It is my prayer that these next months might be a time to become drenched in the Kingdom.

Thursday, May 3, 2007

What would I really say?

My friend Josh just recently had their first baby and he had written some thoughts on his blog that he would like to share with little Roy. So, in honor of that and in thinking through our own child could arrive any time now I thought I might try the same exercise.

Dear ...... (I know your name, but we're keeping it a secret)

Here are some basic ground rules of my life and I would greatly appreciate if you might be obliged to consider them important also. First, I try really hard to love Jesus and out of that love to take care of other people in the world. One of the things I am particularly passionate right now, which will probably have repercussions in your life, is the desire to get out of United States in order to show you that this place is not the normal way of existence. To be honest, I fail a lot at this goal, but I do pray that my life might be a small guidepost of what it means to love Jesus and pour that love to others. Second, I love your mom a lot. She and I have known each other for about seven years now. Our first year was filled with sadness for me because she was dating some guy (whose name shall not be mentioned), but she finally came to her senses. I know that you will grow to love and respect her because she is passionate about life and loves to envision a better and more profound world. You are really lucky. Third, the rest of your family is really anticipating your arrival. You have more clothes and toys than most people would ever need, particularly when they are still unborn. I hope that you take the time to know them because you will learn a lot and be challenged. They are a joyful group that embodies hope, joy, fortitude, passion, intelligence, and love. Fourth, I love to learn new things. This has actually a bit of an obsession for me lately, I am writing this while working at a bookstore. We just packed up the books in our house and it was about 30 boxes of books. You WILL like books because I will force them on you. I have heard it is not good to force things on your children, but this will just have to be the exception. Don't worry, I will not read you irritating books by angry people, but some of them might be a bit above your age. It'll be good for you. Fifth, our family roots for the Minnesota Twins. I guess this is probably another non-negotiable. I am ok if you don't root for the Vikings, Timberwolves, and Wild, but the Twins are an essential part of our unit. We particularly enjoy when Johan Santana is pitching in the second half of the season. You will understand what I mean when you are a teenager and he is about to win his 15th Cy Young award! Finally, I am not perfect. I know this will come as a shock, but I thought I should get it out of the way early. I have failed in many ways and will continue to do so in my life, but you need to know that I will always love you as well as I know how. I promise to respect you and be your advocate. I promise to be your protector and bestow worth upon you. I want our relationship to be one rooted in honesty so I thought I would initiate that here.

I love you and can't wait to meet you.