Monday, April 27, 2009

Man Crush 101

Yes I have a man crush. Who you ask? Zach Efron! I can’t tell you when it was…whether it started with his small acting roles in shows like ER, Firefly, Dear Abby, CSI Miami, or his larger roles in the High School Musicals, HAIRSPRAY, or his most recent role in 17 teen again. It doesn’t matter when my crush started as long as you know I have one now!

So let’s talk about 17 Again, with Zach Efron and Matthew Perry, which was awesome! I don’t know if I was blinded by the Zach Efroness of the film to know if the plot made any sense or if the other actors pulled it together, but it seemed like the best movie ever!! The film touched on all his great abilities, dancing, acting, singing, and basketball. It wasn’t like a high school musical film, but the director carefully crafted different parts in the movie to flatter Zach’s many talents! If you haven’t seen it you must! Don’t think less of me because I have this crush, but come along side with me and realize that Zach Efron is the man, and one day him and I will be friends!!

Go to this Youtube site and watch a clip from Hairspray! Maybe this will spark a crush you never knew you had :)

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


So I was at Tim's Ciccones house last night to watch 24. Which was insane by the way!! Jack Bauer is sooo going to die, but that's not why I am writing this blog :) I walked down stairs looking fly as could be with this old navy sweater on and black shorts. I brought Chiplote to eat, so I sat at the table and started munching away. Alicia looks back at me and on my sweater the letters ON standing for Old Navy are in the upper left and she says, "Hey why does your shirt say ON." Laurey listening in on our convo right after says, "Because his pants say OFF!" Everyone in the basement starts cracking up. I thought this was the funniest thing ever. She is soo freaking funny. Because his pants say off. Does anyone else find this funny, and clever/a little inappropriate:)

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Life Lesson from a Teenager

Part of my job as a youth pastor is to watch kids at different events. Ranging from soccer games to swim meets. Today I had the chance to watch two of my favorite girls (Emma Tyler and Madison Haverty) pole-vault.
I got there during their warm ups and preparation prior to there actual jumps. It looked pretty fun, and also very hard. They got to do about 4 or 5 practice jumps and took time to work on there techniques. Emma asked one of her friends for help when she felt like her jump wasn’t the best. This process took about 20-30 min and then they started their judged jumps.
The bar was set up and you had to clear it at 6ft with out having it fall over to move on to the next height. A couple girls from other schools went and they had some real difficulty. Emma and Madison were not exception. They both scratched their first jumps, but I knew they just had to get rid of their nerves. Then they scratched their second, and then they scratched their third. You are only given 3 chances to move on to the next height and they missed all 3!
I was really sad when they didn’t land their last jumps. They have to wait around for a couple of hours to do their event and it can be over sooo quickly. As the girls walked over to me smiling a sort of defeated smile, I was thinking of some encouraging things to say. I started to say some nice things like you will do better next…and before I could finish Emma stopped me and said,


I told her, “I just want to say something encouraging to you guys.”

“You don’t have to TJ.” “If you have to tell us something, tell us we need to work harder and practice more.” With a smile on her face she said that, and I couldn’t help but smile to.

I was like WOW! That’s pretty simple. Tell us work harder and practice more, and maybe one day we will be good. I was looking for some empty words to comfort these girls, but what about straight forward honesty. Huh, what about that! How about you shoot me straight bucko. Wow what a thought to be honest with someone and they take it in a good light and see a way to better them selves. I learned a lesson from those girls today. Weather it was that a good friend just like the bible says in Proverbs 27:17 as iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. Or that honesty is as much a characteristic of God as love is I defiantly learned something today.
And as the week goes on and I go to an orchestra concert tomorrow, and a swim meet on Thursday, and a track meet afterwards, or freedom fire with a group of kids on Friday I will look for…

Life Lesson from a Teenager

PS: Maybe one day I will compile these lessons and put them in a little book as a reference, but until that day keep your eyes open ;)

Sunday, April 12, 2009

God has gifted me, so His name will be glorified

Matthew 13:51-52
“Have you understood all these things?” Jesus asked
“Yes,” they replied.
He said to them, “Therefore every teacher of the law who has been instructed about the kingdom of heaven is like the owner of a house who brings out of his storeroom new treasures as well as old.”

Do you understand or are you at one with the crowds? How important is it for us to understand the mysteries of the kingdom if we are going to instruct others and further the kingdom! The people of the church during this time were like scribes who drew from the storeroom of their Christian and pre-Christian knowledge new treasures and old. A scribe comes to Jesus with a lifetime of study of the law and of all its commandments. The background helps us understand. But after we have been taught be Jesus, you have the knowledge, not only of the things you used to know, but of things you never knew before, and even the knowledge which you had before is illuminated by what God has told to you. Christ does not come to erase all that we gained in life before we met him. He comes to enrich it. Every man comes to Jesus Christ with some gift and with some ability. Jesus didn’t ask that we give up our gifts. So many people think that when a man declares for Christ he must give things up and concentrate upon the so-called religious things.

But a…
Scholar does not give up his scholarship when he becomes a Christian: rather he uses it for Christ.
A business man need not give up his business; rather he should run it as a Christ would.

One who can sing, or dance, or act, or paint need not give up his art, but must use it like Christ would.

Here we see Jesus telling men, not to abandon their life, but to live it more wonderfully in the light of the knowledge which he has given us.

This was a final point that I gave in a talk with the high school a couple of weeks ago. This is a really important concept for us to understand I believe. When I first got this new job of being the youth pastor at the Blue Valley site I was very excited, but I found myself a little sad as well. I was a 3d computer animation major and I was sad because I thought I was losing my art. I thought with this new position that I wouldn’t be able to express myself anymore in the way of art. One of my favorite things to do is draw, and I felt like I had to move on from that and focus completely on being a “Youth Pastor”. Wrong!
When I spoke that Sunday about heaven I drew some pictures of heaven, to help the kids image what a great place it will be. (You can see some of the images in the post “Heaven it’s real…I’ve seen it!” Once I was done speaking people were leaving and one of the girls in the youth group asked if I had drawn the pics. I said yes, and she said that I shouldn’t stop doing art. I hadn’t told her about what I was feeling about losing my art, but that really spoke to me. Why would I ever stop drawing because I am a “Youth Pastor”. There is no reason! God will use that ability just like he has used me being able to relate well with kids, my humor, speaking ability etc. This isn’t a post on how awesome I am, but to encourage you guys to continue with the things that make you happy. Don’t become a Christian and give up your talents thinking God needs them, but instead realize that God gave you those talents and will use it for his glory.
So for me to rekindle that passion I once had for art I am deciding to draw one picture a week, and to keep art a real and valid way to do youth ministry. Here are some pictures that I drew a while back. Keep your passions, and desire for God. When your in his will, he will use you in new and exciting ways!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

The Last Supper

Today my friend and roommate came to Hillcrest Covenant Church Blue Valley. I asked him a couple weeks ago if he wanted to speak and he said, “Yes!” He did a great job! Greg and I lead worship and Daniel spoke. It was kind of cool seeing all of us doing different things for the Lord this morning. All leading ministry in one way or another, and God working through all of our gifts and talents to help teens understand a little more about Him. Daniel said some great things and really challenged the kids. He spoke on Ephesians 2:1-5 you should read it. He did a great job, but that’s not what this blog is about.
After church we all went to Pepperjack Grill for lunch. While we were eating Daniel told us that he was moving his bed today, and that he would be sleeping at his parents house the rest of the week. This took us by surprise to say the least. Knowing this was our last meal with Daniel before he leaves for Texas was a sad an emotional thing.
So we shot this little video letting you guys know how we feel about Daniel, and Daniel sharing a little something…

Thursday, April 2, 2009

I'll See Ya in a Future Life...ha

Wow! It has been almost been 14 months of living at Meadowlark Hill Apartments. I have had a great time with my roommates! My brother moved in about September and has been living with us for about 9 months. It has been really great, but it’s time for some of us to move on. Daniel is moving out of town, my brother is moving down to Arizona, and Greg and I are still maybe thinking of getting a place together, but where ever Greg and I move we won’t be staying at Meadowlark Hill Apartments.'s a tricky thing.
One of the things we have to do in leaving these apartments is give a 60 day notice. If you don’t give that notice they will start a whole new lease, and you will have to pay money to get out of it. Greg a few months ago gave our notice to the front office which was a great idea. Do it early so we don’t get stuck. Daniel went to the office like a month later to tell them we weren’t stay another year just to double check. We had a friend here who got stuck for another year even though he had told them he was leaving with plenty of notice (we are just a little paranoid). When he went in and asked if they had our notice on file they didn’t, so he told them again and more sternly that we weren’t staying!
Another couple of months passed and it came to the 61st day before the end of our lease. My mom called the day before and reminded us that we needed to give the 60 day notice. I told her, "We had done it twice." She said, "To better make sure!"
So on March 31st I went to the office and video recorded me talking to this lady. I thought it might be good to record it just in case they said we didn’t come in. I would be able to wip out this video and show them...ha!! I wanted to post this yesterday so that my blog would read April 1st, and they would know it was taken 60 days before we had to leave, but April 2nd isn't that bad :)

Go ahead and watch and my roommates laughed pretty hard. If you know any of us you should find it pretty funny.