Saturday, October 29, 2005

Grand Opening

There are those who read this blog who have been a little upset with me. I can understand their frustration. I have been living in Osaka for two and half months and yet not a single blog has been about my time here. Till recently the most exciting entries have been regarding fish and books. I would be miffed too.

Well, be miffed no longer. There is a enter blog devoted to this year in Japan. It is full of thoughts, touristy sight-seeing days, cultural oberstavtions, my own culture shock and experiences, plus pictures and super cool "Word Ups".

That’s right, the Top Secret Blog is open to public viewing:
Melvin and My Adventures in Japan

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Half Birthday

I am exactly 24 and a half today, in six months I will be 25. Life seems to be going faster now. I have six months to reach my goal of running in a 10-km race. That is starting to look more and more like a reality. This week I’ve been running 5-km. Wonder what else will happen between now and April. Everything seems is unknown. Maybe I’ll be fluent in Japanese, that seems highly unlikely. My only hope at this moment is that I will be closer to God. In the next moment my goals might be more selfish and self-seeking. But for now I desire a hunger for God.

In other news....start the countdown on Oct 30th the top secret blog will be unveiled. Yes, just four days till the grand opening.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Maybe…

The responses to "The Ideal" has caused me rethink my first question. Originally I was asking what is the ideal community would be. Perhaps what I am truly seeking are the principles that should be at the core of Christian fellowship/community/church.

Having an idea of what Christian fellowship should look like would give us a guideline to strive for, not that we could ever reach it on this side. Yet, outside appearance can be fake and not a true representation of the heart of the matter. It is the core values and principles that motivate seen actions.

The easy answer could be love. The highest value of Christian community should be love. But what does that mean? I hear "its all about love" (and yes i have Dave Klob singing 'its all about love, all about love' going through my head right now) but what does that mean? What does that mean for small groups, a Sunday school class, a D-group, a church body?

I find it hard to define love. Such a small word means so many different things depending on its use. For this situation, I would like to suggest: desiring the best for others, seeking unity, and enjoying being together, crying together, laughing together, and food -Eating food together is very important! Sharing coffee, pizza, cookies…pie. mmmm pie. I am hungry now. I am going to go find something to munch on. What would you add or change to this definition of love?

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

The Ideal

I’ve had a lot of thoughts in my head lately about community, fellowship, and what the body of church is and should look like. A recent conversation started the all pondering (and yes Jen, I have even mused). During the talk I reflected on my experience as a youth in the Church, saying: "Everyone was too busy telling us the rules and trying to prove they were good little followers that too few would be real enough to show clay feet…we all need to see more followers of Christ without masks." And later "There are just too few examples of communities being love in action." My own harsh judgements* has left me struggling with more questions then I have answers for. The more I reflect on the subject the more the topic seems to grow. But I have been able boiled my thoughts down to the four questions. I hope to look at each question individually. My questions are:

1) What is the ideal community?
2) What are the flaws or things that hinder the ideal?
3) What would this community look like when considering the flaws and the messy world we live in?
4) How do we make this practical community a reality?

Currently my thought of what the church should be (or the ideal community) is: "People coming along beside each of other to walk in the mud and filth that comes of living in this very fallen, messy world and helping restore us as we live with the consequences of our choices"
How would you define the perfect/ideal Christian community?

*I realise that both statements are sweeping and stereotypical and not a 100% true for every church or Christian. Nor was my overall experience in the church as a teen negative; if it was I probably would not be where I am now.

Monday, October 17, 2005

And the goo comes out

I like goo -when its not my brain transforming into goo.

With this hatred for brain-goo, I am determined to battle my writer's block. It might be a nasty war. With much toil, tears, and sweat (I thank Winston Churchill for the inspiration). But I will fight no matter the cost. The only thing that makes me a little said is that I think it will mean death to my procrastination…and I like procrastinating.

The battle plan is a combination of of everyones suggestions, so thank you friends. First, there will be a set deadline for each week. Right now it will be Monday, before I go to bed. I give Robin White permission to kick my butt if I am late, since it was his suggestion for the deadline. I also am going to try and publish on Thursdays…not as set deadline. We’ll see how that goes. Second, I will just write, and hope that it’s somewhat understandable. Last, a notebook/journal. I do find it easier to write in a book then to type while my eyes glaze over from the computer screen. The challenge with the notebook is that most of my thoughts seem to come to me while I am out running. Makes it hard to write them down. We'll see how it goes

So there is my strategy, let the war begin.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Speechless

I seem to be suffering from a serious bout of writer’s block, or something of that nature. Over the past two months every time I’ve sat down to write my mind goes blank. Blank mind = no blogging. It is not that I don’t have any thoughts. I’ve been contemplating a few different issues like Christian community, temptation, and art of eating of sushi. I would love to share my thoughts and hear others opinions. But as soon as I sit in front of the computer everything goes to goo. I’ve tried to type nothing seems to fit or sound right, (again it all turns to goo). It is frustrating. I am sure not just for me. You the readers have had to put up with the dull news about my fish and reading habits, which are okay subjects when mixed with other stuff. But a steady diet of just that is not stew –its pathetic.

My question to you: “how does one get over writer’s block?”

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Tragedy Strikes –again

Honey committed suicide.

Honey and the three remaining fish were in a bowl waiting to return to a freshly cleaned tank. The fish tank was in process of being cleaned and I was in class when the stupid fish jumped out of the bowl and under my bed. It was a sad thing.

Now there is only Godzilla, Sushi, and Bookshelf.