Sunday, January 28, 2007

Great Movie.

Rachel and I watched Blood Diamond the other day and it is a beautiful movie. It's one of those stories where you feel there is no hope in the world, however the acting, filming, setting, etc is all wonderful. I think it is worth watching. Cheers.


Friday, January 26, 2007


I got to do a teaching called Know Jesus the other day and it really got me thinking more about who Jesus was. I think that so many people who want nothing to do with Jesus really have no idea who he was and there are so many misconceptions about Jesus that its easier just to bugger the whole thing. I honestly think that one of the things that makes people think Jesus was super cheesy was how he has been betrayed so poorly in “christian” art. There is this town near Pretoria that we toured in last year that has a painting in the office of Jesus walking on water. He is wearing a perfectly while robe and has his hands out to the side with his thumbs turned downward. Go ahead, put your arms out and see how silly it looks, see its ridiculous. He also looks like he is floating. Why is Jesus always floating?

In the class we looked at the human side of Jesus along with the divine side of Jesus. We looked at different snapshots from his life and tried to look at Jesus as a real man and not just the arms out, thumbs down, floating Jesus. There is a picture that I love where Jesus goes to a 12 year old girls house who had just died. Jesus walks in the room where the girl is, bends down besides her, takes her hand and says “little girl, get up”. I loved this because it is such a tender moment between Jesus and this little girl. I imagine him taking that small lifeless hand and feeling the warmth come back. I imagine him smiling as she opens her eyes. It was just a beautiful picture of Jesus as a real man, a man with emotions, friends, hunger, thirst, good days, grumpy days, being tired, etc. I think we the church have done a poor job of teaching who Jesus was. If you are a person that doesn't want anything to do with Jesus because of “christians” that you have met, I would like to encourage you to try to get to know Jesus on your own, look beyond the floating Jesus and look at the man. Cheers


Saturday, January 20, 2007

My New Band.

My band got to play the other day for the first time and I think we sound pretty good. Some of the guys have never played on a click track before, but they are so close to being on time that it won't be long. My drummer is this kid who has never owned a drum kit before and has only played on borrow drums or at friends houses and he is really good. We have a drummer instructor that is amazing so I think this kid is going to be a brilliant drummer once he gets a little direction. I am super excited about his potential. Our female vocalist is a girl from Quincy, Ill named Giovanni. She is great. Plus, her voice is beautiful, so that pumps me up. So basically I was nervous about losing my band from last year, but I think we are going to sound great, after lots of rehearsal time. Cheers.


Friday, January 19, 2007

Afternoon Meltdown.

It has been so hot in the afternoons that I honestly thought I my flesh may melt off and puddle under my skeleton and fry like an egg on the hot african soil. Ok, perhaps not that bad, but its just been nasty hot. There is also no AC at work or at home here so that adds to the heat. I look forward to a nice cool drive home in the the air conditioned Corolla. Oh well, it will cool down soon, April. Cheers.


Monday, January 15, 2007

I Am So Sorry We Don't Have A Picture

Rachel and I have been discussing the possibility of getting another dog so that Guinness has a friend while we are at work for 16 hours somedays during training. So yesterday we went shopping. We drove out to the farm where we got Guinness, but they had no puppies. Then as we were driving home a friend of ours called and said that the pet store in the mall had great dane pups. So we left the farm and drove to the mall and found a beautiful little great dane puppy. She is harlequin (black and while like a dalmatian) and is so cute. Her and Guinness get along well, even though Guinness knocks her over and slides her around the tile floor. We are still deciding on a name. We started calling her Damar, which was the name of Rachel's dad and grandfathers photo shop in Savannah. Its a combination of her grandpa and grandma' names (David+Marian=Damar). It was said as a joke, but kinda fits. Other possible names are Andi, Hannah, Holstein (for the cows). Let me know what you think. I think I like Damar, however we have not made up our mind. I will get pics asap. Cheers.


Sunday, January 14, 2007

Good Bye Friend.

Some of you may have met my friend Mike Depina at some point. He and my mom met when I was a kid and starting dating and they eventually moved in together. Mike has been part of the family forever. Well, he got sick a little while back and his liver became really swollen, like big enough to poke his stomach out. They checked him in the hospital and there was little they could do so he was moved to hospice where he died last Thursday. It is really sad for me, Mike was a great man and I hate that I never got to see him again. Please pray for my mom, they haven't been a couple for a long time, but they still lived in the same house and assumed they would grow old together. She will miss him terribly. Cheers.


Thursday, January 11, 2007


At the beginning of training each year we have a day and a half of storytelling. Basically it's time where each person has 8 minutes tell the teams their life story. They can talk about good things or bad things, but typically its a time where people can really open up and share something personal with the teams. Today we went through most of the team and some of the peoples stories break my heart. I am so saddened my the number of girls on team that have been molested or been abused by a parent, relative or friend. Its so sad to see the self image issues that many of the students on team have and how they handle these issues through some sort of self-injury or eating disorder. It breaks my heart to hear stories of people that were abandoned by their parents. The good thing about it though is it shows the teams that nobody's life is perfect and we all have been through something and God has been there to bring us through. I am so happy that C-Kruis doesn't try to fake a perfect face for people, that we are a group of broken, hurting people trying to rely on God's strength to get us through life's crushing. I love the honesty of the team members. Cheers.


Wednesday, January 10, 2007

It's a Boy.

Our friends Flaps and Amanda (Flaps is the CEO of C-Kruis) had a son yesterday. They are the proud parents of Ricado van der Merwe (pronounced ree-car-doo-fun-dare-mare-va). He is healthy and has hair. Cheers.


Back in the Game.

We are back from Adventure Camp and starting training this week. The teams did well and after several days of hectic camp they are back and stronger. Our A.C. is pretty tough on the students, but they made it and we are proud of them. Cheers.


Friday, January 05, 2007

Off To Adventure Camp.

We have been doing our leadership training this past week with the Management Committee and the Team Leaders and today the rest of the team with be arriving. It's so fun to see the looks of fear on the faces of the new team members. It is also really exciting to see these young 18 year olds who will some day be the leaders of this ministry. I was so impressed during auditions with the character of some of these young adults and after spending time with the leaders this week I am very excited about the team this year. We will be back late Monday night or Tuesday. Cheers.


Thursday, January 04, 2007

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Happy New Year.

Happy 2007!!!! Ray and I got back from our hike late afternoon on the 31st and had the most boring new years I can remember. Rachel fell asleep about 11:50 and I was laying next to her reading. When I heard the fireworks going off downtown I nudged Rach with my elbow and said, "happy new year". She woke up, rolled over, and asked what I said. After I repeated, "happy new year", she replied, with her eyes have closed, "happy new year" and went back to sleep. It was kind of pathetic.

Oh well, the new year is here and we are starting with our leadership teaching today that run from 8:30 and run into the night. It's fun having the leadership from both teams together. We had a braai (cook out) last night and are ready to get this years training going.

Happy New Year. Cheers.