Saturday, June 28, 2008

We just bought a house

I will be back once things are settled.

Jim :)

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Another award (The "Free Thinker" Blog Award)

from....Diane who blogs on A Stellarlife

Here's my response to Diane.....
Wow... I am taking a break from blogging due to what's going on in my life, like buying a house, my daughter's graduation from high school, vocational school and of course a graduate of Buckeye Ranch which is a a place that help teenagers with problems. My daugther made it after after hitting bottom.

Last week, Krista graduated from high school as Valedictorian and she gave her speech about her life's struggle and how she became what she is today. I am proud of her.

My other daughter is busy dancing this weekend at the Columbus Dance Theatre.

My schedule is very tight this summer now that I am on various committees and projects. Along with my normal duties as Grants Administrator, I have a new duty that has been added to my daily work activities. This duty is basically called Cognos Report Authoring (creating reports for the agency as well as for the State of Ohio). COGNOS provides a reporting tool for OAKS (State of Ohio's Accounting System) information that use SQL-based programming which are similar to other SQL-based applications (Access, SQL Server, Oracle). They send me to school to learn more about computer based reporting technology and will be going back to school to study advance Cognos/SQL applications this summer.

At my work, I am teaching Cognos classes coming up this month (3 classes) and not sure how many next month.

On top of the above, my wife and I are in the process of closing a deal on the house. The closing date is June 30, 2008.

I will be busy between now and then.

Like Arnold said, "I will be back"...... I will be back.



Thursday, June 5, 2008


Hi, I have been busy purchasing a house, working many hours at work and of course, deep personal thoughts. I have been studying "Job" for a long time and learned about my own sufferings and learned patience through them.

Job reads like history. It talks about a man named Job. He lived in the land of Uz. It relates details about his family, his life, and his suffering. It communicates to us his friends' interest in his suffering, and the spiritual struggling with which Job dealt. What's interesting is that other biblical writers refer to Job as a real person. Ezekiel refers to Job along with Noah and Daniel (Ezekiel 14:14,20). And James draws upon the example of Job to comfort the suffering, proving the point that God is merciful. He commends the endurance of Job (Jas. 5:11). From the Book of Job, we see that God is in complete control. Satan had neither the power nor the authority to do anything without the permission of God. It was consistent with God's nature and will for him to have allowed those things to happen to Job. The Lord's point to Job, at the end of the book, is that he is the all-powerful Creator. He is the loving Sustainer. And he is the perfect Ruler. He created the Universe, and he knows how to govern it as well.

Through the book of Job, I have learned about Job's example of Faith. God made a point to the devil and to the whole world of people who have ever read that account. And the point is this, that true saving faith is not dependent on positive circumstances. God is making a point with Satan and to make the point He uses Job and the point is to show the strength and the continuity and the unwavering character of true saving faith, true love for God. The person who really loves God is not the person who loves God because of what he gets, but the person who loves God because of who He is.

There is a verse in the Bible that God promises that there won’t be anything so bad happen to me that I am not able to bear it. God does everything--He governs everything. Faith is accepting God's Will. There is confusion between the determined Will of God and a Christian's responsibility as a Christian.

From the Book of Job, we see that God is in complete control. Satan had neither the power nor the authority to do anything without the permission of God. It was consistent with God's nature and will for him to have allowed those things to happen to Job. The point of the story of Job is about God's Sovereign. Not really about Job. People always focus on Job more than God's sovereign. Jesus said clearly about a penny's worth of sparrows compare to us. Matthew 10:29: Are not two sparrows sold for a penny ? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father. If God can control with those two sparrows, then He will do the same for His children as well. In reality, the blessings are from God, the Holy Spirit-and using that person as an instrument to do God's will and plan.

God's divine intervention (i.e. trials) goes BOTH WAYS. All circumstances can turn people to God. Scriptures reveals that no trial, no disease or illness, no accident or injury reaches us apart from God's permission. Christians can answer like Joseph to his brothers who sold him into slavery, “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good.” There are some who seem to look on the gloomy side and never able to do respond in faith to life's problems, instead, they grumble about the trials that they forget God's powerful grace.

Remember the story of Joseph in the Old Testament (Genesis 50:20), Joseph told his brothers who sold him into slavery, “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good.” God will take advantage of Satan's evil desires and motives to accomplish His will. The Bible clearly teaches that God knows beforehand what we will need and He will provide beforehand according to His will. God is absolutely powerful, that God is omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent, that God is immutable, never changes, that God is all wise, perfectly just, holy, righteous. God is ruling all things to work together for our good and His purpose.

The fact of the matter is the visible providence of God has no respect of persons. It doesn't discriminate between believers and unbelievers. Plane crashes, boat sinkings, train accidents, car collisions, heart disease, cancer doesn't discriminate between a sinner and a saint, or between a sinner and a sinner.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Choosing a Church, Love and Doctrines

The clarity of a view on a given doctrinal subject is a valid consideration in selecting a church. No doctrine is more important to evangelical theology than the doctrine of justification by faith alone—the Reformation principle of sola fide. Martin Luther was used by God to develop, what theologians call "soteriology" the doctrine of salvation. He was a "soteriologist" and the truth of the matter is that the Reformation was a soeteriological reformation, that never touched the field of ecclesiology (the doctrine of the Church).

Martin Luther called it the article that determines whether the church is standing or falling. No one person is the repository of all divine truth and that all of us are made, to some extent, incapacitated because of our humanness. Paul wrote, "No man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Jesus Christ" (1 Corinthians 3:11). Christ Himself embodied or established every doctrine that is essential to genuine Christianity. The hardest thing in Bible study is to divorce myself from all my presuppositions and take every text purely on its own merit.

We have to remember that its not the scriptures that are corrupted. Its a man's heart that is corrupted. Intelligence, reason, and choice. Studying the scriptures requires the Holy Spirit which is inward, not outward. The Holy Spirit is within us believers, Christ dwells in our hearts, and "Christ in you, the hope of glory" (Colossians 1:27) is the burning core of the Christian faith.

Two-way relationship with God requires our submission, obedience and love to Him. The WORD is Jesus Christ. God's Word (the Bible) sometimes wounds us deeply and it is imperative because through the Bible, God speaks loudly. The Bible illumines the dark corners of heart and mind by exposing sin but reveals the way of rightousness. The Word of God (Bible) rebukes in order that we may see our faults. When a Christian who is saved by the conviction of the Holy Spirit, this Christian is living in a new Creature with holy conscience rather than sinful conscience. If we didn't feel the conviction and didn't have the motivation to change from "within", then we should be concerned whether we are truly saved or not. "If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit." The condition of the heart determines how receptive a person is to the gospel. The Holy Spirit is the key. Faith comes as a result of the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit-He quickens our hearts to believe. Apart from the new birth, there can be no true faith. Without the Holy Spirit, our faith and our works are NOTHING.

We can fake other people but we can't fake to God. It is important to understand that our hearts are the state of our "flesh". Our flesh search for pleasure, pride, passions and selfish motives. Our hearts are like a garden with beautiful flowers and plants. As with all gardens, the hearts must be kept free from weeds and insects. God is not impressed by our works or how we worship. In 1. Samuel 16:7, The Lord said to Samuel, "Don't judge by his appearance or height, for I have rejected him. The Lord don't make decisions the way you do. People judge by outward appearance (i.e. works), but the Lord looks at a person's thoughts and intentions (heart)."

When we argue and disagree, we will know what kind of a Christian others are and what kind of a heart they have. We always argue over things that we love, or that we disagree. If a Christian is not careful and forget. 2 Timothy 3:16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. In order to "revere" the Word of God (Bible), we are to submit to the Holy Spirit who is the Author of the Bible. Jesus said in John 6:63 The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and they are life. Everyone is different. Some may consider one extreme and the other is not while another person is the opposite. We are not to persuade people to follow certain extremist views of doctrines because only God can take care of that based on each individual as the Holy Spirit convicts their hearts. Practicing charity (love) is a toughie depending on someone's view from where they are sitting/experiencing.

Disability and Church Issue: Autistic

What to do with a child that once struck a child during mass, nearly knocks elderly parishioners over when he hastily exits the church, spits and sometimes urinates in church and fights when he is being restrained? A Minnesota Catholic church has filed a restraining order against a family that was attending their church in an effort to stop the parents from bringing their "extremely disruptive and dangerous" autistic son to church.

People with disabilities make up one of the largest minority group in the country, especially withing Christian Churches. The Bible also teaches us to bear the burdens of someone with a disability fulfills a command of scripture (Galatians 6:2). 2 Samuel 9:3-4 tells the story of David’s kindness to Mephibosheth, the lame son of Jonathan, modeling the way the church should minister. Many churches often treats disabilities, especially with the deaf community as 2nd or 3rd class citizens. A disabled Christian believer can enrich in a Christian community, Christians with disabilities – especially those in positions of leadership can serve as God's best examples of His power being made perfect in weakness.

Now...there are two major issues: safety and focus on God during church services. Of disruptions causing people losing focus on their worship and safety issues among the congregation, we have to consider them as well. When we look in the mirror, we are the part of the spiritual Church. That if we have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from His love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make our joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. (Philippians 2:1-2). People who accept and respect a person's refusal to submit must have strong influences to make things change without negative affect.

Through my own family, we have been looking for certain churches that we can fit in and there are NOT MANY out there. I was born with deafness and later in life I was diagnosed with MS. My step-daughter was born with cerebral palsy as well as mild retardation due to seizures when she was a child. My blood daughter have bipolar and personality disorder disabilities. We will try Upper Arlington Lutheran Church and go from there. We just want a special needs service for my daughter who has cerebral palsy with low IQ. Many of the Church's members are volunteers and by no means they are expected to be experts on certain issues. They are simply "Helpers", 1 Corinthians 12:28 is amplified in Romans 12:7,8 by the gifts of contributing, giving aid, showing mercy and perhaps also rendering service. This gift is the most common and perhaps very important because Peter encourages those who render service to do it "with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ" (1 Pet. 4:11).

Sometime families with disabilities are stuck and often stay home rather than dealing with issues with each local churches.

Made an offer and offer is accepted

We have been very very busy and of course stressful. Buying a house is a nervous reck for me. We made an offer and it was accepted. We are in the process of purchasing a 3 bedroom ranch house and full basement and remodeled kitchen. We will still be living in Upper Arlington which is outside Columbus not far from the Ohio State University. The closing date will be June 30. Our money saving plans and budget have paid it off. Instead of paying rent, we will be putting our money towards the house (mortgage).

Getting to work, I will be taking different bus routes which stop will be located 300 feet for Bus #60 (nearest), Bus #19 @ .4 mile and Bus #3 .8 mile from the new home. This alone has saved my family $300-$500 a month on gas, parking and wear & tear expenses.

My wife and I are planning to be more involved in the community now since we have this "sense of belonging" of a community in Upper Arlington.

We will be attending Upper Arlington Lutheran Church just before or after we move. We are getting ready to settle down.