Saturday, March 28, 2009

Last Skate Sessions for the Year

Friday Night
My Buddy Tyler
My Buddy Kenton
My Buddy Vincent

My Cousin Scott showed up with his Church Youth Group.

Saturday Afternoon

The boys with their buddy Orrin.

It takes 88 Tires...

...two drivers, two trucks, and one huge trailer. Dad caught this on video going up past his house. Notice the man steering from the back of the trailer. There is no one driving the second rig.

Prayer Breakfast

Some men of the church gathered for some breakfast and devotions given by Tom Misch. Pictured: (left to right) Paul Klein, George Randall, Tom Misch, Tom Rodgers, and Blaine Cosner.

Wherein I Hit a Deer

Dirt Biking at the Farm

Derrick Wallace, Nicole Wallace, Alyssa, Kendra, Vincent, and Kenton riding the hills of Rayne Township.

Vincent Loves Papa's 4 Wheeler

Kenton's Jump Sequence

Derrick Wallace

Getting some air.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

The 3 Stooges Update

Larry, Curly, and Moe are doing just fine. They are not standing in order of their names but happened to line up nicely for a photo for prospective meat eaters. Just call up Kenton and he will let you know that in about 2 years they can be dripping juice onto your charcoal or gas grill.

Some Pickin and Singin'

Andy and Becky Crouch crooning away.

Under the Cover

On a recent electric job I noticed 2 Model A's and a Model T in pristine shape hiding under some plastic. Somebody has some real treasure there. No clue on the value of such things, but it made me curious.

Dehorning Heifers

WARNING GRAPHIC CONTENT: For all of those who are faint of heart, you may want to skip this post. For those who grew up on a farm it is no big deal. For those who wonder what goes on during the time the farmers are not milking, feeding, plowing, planting, haying etc.....well you can get educated. Kendra was helping Papa get the cows head tied up.

You have to look closely...their are two cows heads.
The one that is getting its horns cut is on the right.
Minus the horn.

Tom always puts clotting powder and bandages them up.

Alyssa was watching from the tractor seat.

Tom looks slightly amused at the site of the red hat he had made.

Ice Cream Run

I was itching to drive the farms new semi. It was a White with a four and a quarter CAT diesel under the hood. For those who don't know motors that is 425 horse power. The farm acquired the rig and made allot of changes and improved the looks quite a bit. Tom decided we needed to get some ice cream. It is his tradition to do everynight before heading to sleep with the grandkids. They love it and so does he. Kendra decided to tag along with us. She hopped into the sleeper and enjoyed the ride. The plan: Tom drives up to the store and then I drive back. He had not gotten a chance to drive it yet so he was happy to do so.
Kendra with her Papa

Heading across 119 to Hills of Home to get a bucket of ice cream.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Some People....

...look for handicaps to excuse themselves from work and life; this gal excuses her handicaps and and pursues work and life. A real life hero!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

It is not our Anniversary...

...but it is a special couple of days for us. I love you Julia and I hope you enjoy our getaway! Now you know why I took the wedding album to my office.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Scholar Claims Dead Sea Scrolls 'Authors' Never Existed

By TIM MCGIRK / JERUSALEM Tim Mcgirk / Jerusalem –
Biblical scholars have long argued that the Dead Sea Scrolls were the work of an ascetic and celibate Jewish community known as the Essenes, which flourished in the 1st century A.D. in the scorching desert canyons near the Dead Sea. Now a prominent Israeli scholar, Rachel Elior, disputes that the Essenes ever existed at all - a claim that has shaken the bedrock of biblical scholarship.
Elior, who teaches Jewish mysticism at Jerusalem's Hebrew University, claims that the Essenes were a fabrication by the 1st century A.D. Jewish-Roman historian Flavius Josephus and that his faulty reporting was passed on as fact throughout the centuries. As Elior explains, the Essenes make no mention of themselves in the 900 scrolls found by a Bedouin shepherd in 1947 in the caves of Qumran, near the Dead Sea. "Sixty years of research have been wasted trying to find the Essenes in the scrolls," Elior tells TIME. "But they didn't exist. This is legend on a legend." (See pictures of 60 years of Israel.)
Elior contends that Josephus, a former Jewish priest who wrote his history while being held captive in Rome, "wanted to explain to the Romans that the Jews weren't all losers and traitors, that there were many exceptional Jews of religious devotion and heroism. You might say it was the first rebuttal to anti-Semitic literature." She adds, "He was probably inspired by the Spartans. For the Romans, the Spartans were the highest ideal of human behavior, and Josephus wanted to portray Jews who were like the Spartans in their ideals and high virtue." (See pictures of disputed artifiacts.)
Early descriptions of the Essenes by Greek and Roman historians has them numbering in the thousands, living communally ("The first kibbutz," jokes Elior) and forsaking sex - which goes against the Judaic exhortation to "go forth and multiply." Says Elior: "It doesn't make sense that you have thousands of people living against the Jewish law and there's no mention of them in any of the Jewish texts and sources of that period." (Read "Is This Jesus's Tomb?")
So who were the real authors of the Dead Sea Scrolls? Elior theorizes that the Essenes were really the renegade sons of Zadok, a priestly caste banished from the Temple of Jerusalem by intriguing Greek rulers in 2nd century B.C. When they left, they took the source of their wisdom - their scrolls - with them. "In Qumran, the remnants of a huge library were found," Elior says, with some of the early Hebrew texts dating back to the 2nd century B.C. Until the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, the earliest known version of the Old Testament dated back to the 9th century A.D. "The scrolls attest to a biblical priestly heritage," says Elior, who speculates that the scrolls were hidden in Qumran for safekeeping. (See pictures of Jews and Muslims in the Holy Land.)
Elior's theory has landed like a bombshell in the cloistered world of biblical scholarship. James Charlesworth, director of the Dead Sea Scrolls project at Princeton Theological Seminary and an expert on Josephus, says it is not unusual that the word Essenes does not appear in the scrolls. "It's a foreign label," he tells TIME. "When they refer to themselves, it's as 'men of holiness' or 'sons of light.' " Charlesworth contends that at least eight scholars in antiquity refer to the Essenes. One proof of Essene authorship of the Dead Sea Scrolls, he says, is the large number of inkpots found by archaeologists at Qumran.
But Elior claims says these ancient historians, namely Philo and Pliny the Elder, either borrowed from each other or retailed second-hand stories as fact. "Pliny the Elder describes the Essenes as 'choosing the company of date palms' beside the Dead Sea. We know Pliny was a great reader, but he probably never visited Israel," she says.
Elior is braced for more criticism of her theory. "Usually my opponents have only read Josephus and the other classical references to the Essenes," she says. "They should read the Dead Sea Scrolls - all 39 volumes. The proof is there."

Pizza with Paul

This is Paul's door at the high rise.
If you ask him how he is doing he will say "Normal".
He made 3 awesome pizzas.

Julie took all the pictures and did not get in any.

Boys will be Boys

What can I say? My wife titled this post. The kids loved it!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Breakfast at Old Country Buffet

A Great Article by Dan Glick

When Desire Comes Knocking
Resisting the Appeal of Immorality

“He who commits adultery lacks understanding; he who does it destroys himself”
Proverbs 6:32(ESV)

Several years ago while flying I was assigned to a seat between two women; I soon discovered that they were related. The woman to my left was the daughter-in-law to the woman (the mother-in-law) on my right. Looking to generate a little conversation after settling into my seat, I asked one of the ladies what she believed was the greatest problem facing women today. That question sparked no small amount of conversation. For the next several hours these women unburdened their hearts. I learned regrettably that the daughter-in-law’s husband, a doctor, was having an affair with a nurse in her twenties. The mother-in-law felt great shame for her son’s behavior and was intensely empathetic with her daughter-in-law!
While not sounding bitter or unforgiving, the wife, who was a Christian, felt deeply the betrayal of her husband. In my estimation, she was between 40-45 years of age, quite attractive and had two teenage children. The children totally despised what their father was doing. His years of moral instruction were being washed away by the raging waves of his own self-destructive behavior. He appeared to them to be a hypocrite of giant proportions. The truth is—he was.
As I listened to these two grieving women, their words were a stark reminder and a grave warning. No sexual liaison with any woman, be it Miss Universe, could possibly be a good exchange for the shame, heartache and devastation that this man was producing, both for his family and for himself. Sin always has its payday, and for this man that day had dawned.
The husband was now trying to piece some of the parts of his life back together, but things were not going well. He was discovering what remorseful adulterers often come to realize; affairs of this nature tend to run their course, and then neither party knows what to do with the other. The situation turns bitter; life becomes awkward and extremely difficult. And while redeemable, things are never quite the same.
Living, as we do in a sex-saturated society, how is it possible to overcome the appeal of immorality? It is safe to say that all of us will feel at some point the power of wrong attraction. Desire happens, and it is a mark of great foolishness to think that we are above such appeal. From the pages of Scripture we learn that Samson, Solomon, and David were all troubled by wrong attractions and their subsequent choice to indulge. The strongest man, the wisest man, and the most devoted man in the Old Testament were thus brought into captivity by the influence of illicit desire. That is reason enough for all believers, even the most pure-minded among us, to avoid being cozy with the thought that we are not susceptible to failure.
But what is the path to purity? How can we resist through an entire lifetime the appeal to sexual immorality? The following is an attempt to answer that question.
Faith in God

Immorality, like all sin, begins with a lack of trust in God. We fail to trust the goodness of God as it is expressed in the commandments of God, especially when those commandments conflict with our desires and emotions. This gives an opening to Satan who can deceive us, like he did the first couple, into believing that God is a kind of cosmic sadist, crafting laws which restrain us from experiencing the good, rather than saving us from what is inherently flawed.
To successfully resist temptation, we need to believe that God’s commandments are given not to limit us, but to save us; not to restrict our good, but to enhance it. God labels immoral behavior evil precisely because He knows it will always result in evil—for everyone involved. Failure to believe what He says and to acknowledge His goodness as reflected in His restrictions lies at the heart of all moral failure.
The problem with the immoral is that when they revolt against the commandments of God and act upon their lust, they believe they are acting in their own best interests. Immorality, however, is never in one’s self interest. It may appear to be, but it will always prove opposite. This is why immorality is more than just sinful behavior; it is stupid behavior. It does nothing to promote one’s own good. On the contrary immorality is a self-demolition project of great proportion. It is essential that faith be exercised in a good God who is acting in our self-interest when He forbids it.
Focus on the consequences
The wise sayings of Solomon inform us that the adulterer lacks sense or understanding. This is true for two reasons: first, the adulterer holds the misguided belief that lasting pleasure can be realized without bothering to pursue holy behavior, and secondly, because the adulterer fails to sufficiently comprehend the deadly outcome of such action. In twenty-seven years of ministry, I have never met an immoral person who was either happy after the adultery or who had sufficiently counted the cost of such behavior before the adultery.
Some years ago a young man asked me if I thought it was a good practice to enumerate the ways that immorality would adversely affect his life and use that information to fight his temptations. Not only did I encourage such thinking, I offered to be of assistance. Here is at least a partial list:
Adultery betrays the trust of the offended spouse and forces him/her to deal with a mountain of issues—bitterness, forgiveness, disillusionment, destroyed self-esteem, fear—to name a few. It is generally easier to deal with the death of a spouse than with marital infidelity. Adultery murders the spirit of the faithful spouse.
Children will be deeply disappointed and will find it difficult to believe in the parent again. The opportunity is gone forever to look children in the face and encourage them to follow the moral example of the parent.
Friends will feel awkward and not know how to respond to the offender.
The church will be forced to rescind membership and take away ministerial credentials if the offender is ordained.
A good name and reputation will be soiled if not permanently damaged. Scripture warns of this consequence. “A wound and a dishonor shall he [the adulterer] get and his reproach shall not be wiped away” (Proverbs 6:33).
Conscience will be defiled, relationship with God severed, and in the place of God’s blessing—judgment. “For God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous” (Hebrews 13:4).
The claim of “love” which the adulterer usually professes will be seen for the lust and the spite that it really is. Dragging a person into guilt, shame, and defilement can hardly be considered anything but the antithesis of true love.
Possibilities for the future may have been promising, but now they will be seriously diminished, if not forfeited.
How could any illicit sexual relationship be worth reaping a harvest of such heartache and devastation? Focusing on a list like this, especially during times of temptation, could prove to be preventative.
Flee temptation

Paul’s advice to believers is that they should “flee from sexual immorality” (I Corinthians 6:18). To the young minister, Timothy, he wrote “flee youthful passions” (II Timothy 2:22). Temptation is not something with which to argue, reason, or play; it is that from which we should flee. The Old Testament character Joseph is an excellent illustration of one who did just that (Genesis 39:12). When pressed by Potiphar’s wife to engage in an illicit relationship, he quickly and rightly fled the house.
There will be situations in life that call for this sort of radical action. A friendship may need to be terminated; a place of employment changed; a cherished entertainment abandoned, a trip alone canceled, a computer set in an open place. Any of these actions could very well represent what Paul meant by his admonition to “flee temptation”.
In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus also spoke in radical terms (even if they were figurative) when he said that an eye should be plucked out and a hand cut off if they are the means by which one is led into sin. Something very cherished may have to be deserted in order to keep one’s purity, but for the Christian the loss of virtue always trumps the loss of the tangible and the temporal.
Filled with the Spirit

Any message on overcoming the appeal of the immoral would not be complete without consideration being given to the importance of staying filled with the Holy Spirit. In spiritual matters, we simply cannot afford to run on empty. Without inward joy, and contentment, and spiritual satisfaction, any Christian can become vulnerable to the appeal of the flesh. The antidote to immorality is spirituality and the inward fullness of the Holy Spirit. St. Paul’s advice is to “Walk in the Spirit” and we “will not fulfill the lust of the flesh” (Galatians 5:16). One cannot walk in the Spirit unless one stays filled with the Spirit, and living and walking in the Spirit is our strongest defense against sensual appeal. When our inward joy exceeds the outward allure of sin, it is not difficult to resist. Deeply satisfied within, we will not be looking for something to satisfy without.
Jason and the Sirens is a story from Greek mythology that is illustrative of this point. The Sirens and their fatal attraction are described in many ancient writings. The Sirens were seductive “bird-women” who lived in a flowery meadow on an island called Sirenum Scopuli. This island was surrounded by rocks and cliffs that proved deadly to any crew whose ship ventured too closely to the shore. The Sirens had a beautiful, captivating song by which they were given the power to destroy men.Unlucky seaman who came a little too near the island inhabited by the Sirens would become so enthralled by their irresistibly beautiful music and seductive voices that they would shipwreck against the rocky coast and subsequently drown.
In Homer’s Odyssey, Odysseus and his crew had to pass by the island inhabited by the seductive Sirens. Odysseus knew that if extra measures were not taken, he and his crew would lose their lives. Odysseus had his men’s ears plugged with wax. He himself was curious about what the song and voices of the Sirens sounded like, so he had his men tie him tightly to the mast instead, to prevent him from steering the ship into the rocks as he listened. Upon hearing the Siren’s song, he begged to be released, but his crew held fast and would not let him go. Soon, they passed the island and out of range of the Sirens.
When Jason and the Argonauts had to traverse closely to the island, he followed a wiser strategy. Having been forewarned of the Sirens, he asked Orpheus to play loud and beautiful music on his lyre when they passed by the island so that his men would not hear the captivating song of the Sirens. Orpheus did as Jason directed and the men captivated by their own music, never heard the seductive call of the Sirens.
I suppose there are several ways to fight temptation. One way is to strive in one’s own strength, heroically struggling against the flesh, doing the equivalent to plugging one’s ears or tying oneself to the mast of the ship. A better and wiser course would be to stay so filled with the inner music of the Holy Spirit, finding such joy and satisfaction in Jesus Christ, that the appeal of the flesh is greatly diminished, while virtue and purity are preserved.
All Four Are Important

In answering the question, “How may we overcome the appeal of the immoral?” it is important that we give due consideration to all four of these areas. It is needful that we place total faith in a loving and wise God who points us to the good life and away from disaster by way of His commandments, that we focus on the negative consequences of immoral actions, that we flee temptation when it comes knocking, and that we stay filled with the Holy Spirit. Each one of these areas is vital, and taken together, they form a strategy that will keep us empowered to remain sexually pure and faithfully committed to our spouse “till death do us part.”

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Indy Convention Pics

Opening of the convention: Jerry Glick leading singing, Rowan Fay, Mark Cravens, Dwight Rhine, and Clair Sams.

Rowan Fay - Mr. Bus himself! Don't you love his tie.

Union Bible College Choir ready to sing.

Panel discussion: James Plank, James Southerland, John Petit, Chris Cravens, and Craig Dahler.

Rowan Fay speaking on contagious leadership.

A new favorite restaurant.

Tom Rodgers couldn't get enough!

At Cracker Barrel

Jerry and Janiece Cooper
Another new favorite!

Daryl Muir, Marilyn Muir, Dustin Muir - hiding behind Marilyn, Valerie Rice, Elizabeth Rice, and Bruce Robson.

Tom Rodgers ready for a snooze you will see a picture of later!

Fresh custard being made.

Waiting at the last service for a set of CD's.

You see the jacket Duane Quesenberry is wearing?

I could not find mine....

I did not realize my jacket was that large...
Sorry Duane - I could not resist!

Tom caught Blaine Cosner trying to get some shut eye.
Here is Tom Rodgers loudly sawing wood.
We could hear him clear across the hall.

On the way home Daryl making a racket as well.

Dad faithfully drove us from Dayton home,