Thursday, December 18, 2008

Chicken Noodle Soup and 7 Up

I don't know how this keeps happening, but I keep getting sick. The latest bout started last night and continues today. This is the third time in three weeks. I'm thankful for chicken noodle soup and 7 UP and for a wife that serves both of them to me. Hopefully I'll get better soon and hopefully this is my last time getting this.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

California International Marathon

This is a great race. It has lots of things going for it:
  • Excellent organization.
  • Good expo.
  • Fast course.
  • Agreeable weather.
  • Well trained and excited volunteers.
  • And...Sacramento is a cool city.
I got up around 4:00 and had some last minute fuel: chocolate chip cookies, a Pear Apple Strudel Clif Bar, and some Lemonade Gatorade.

I took the bus to the start line. I say next to a woman in her mid 50s who has run Boston for 25 straight years. Interesting conversation.

I met up with my friend Kurt before the race. We decided to go out at 6:40 per mile. We checked our gear in and edged our way up to near the front. The start was a little hectic with many of the relay runners taking off fast during the first mile. Even the five lane road was a little crowded.

Kurt and I cruised through the first 10 miles together. Here are the splits:

1 - 6:36
2 - 6:16
3 - 6:24
4 - 6:09
5 - 6:28
6 - 6:32 (10K was right at 39:59)
7 - 6:24
8 - 6:27
9 - 6:28
10 - 6:26 (10 mile split was 64:14)

At 10 miles I started having stomach problems. No details are necessary, but running became very uncomfortable. I had to let Kurt go. Here are miles 11 to 13:

11 - 6:33
12 - 6:33
13 - 6:33 (Half split was 1:24:40)

Shortly after the half way mark I got sick. I had to stop for about 30 seconds and then got started again.

14 - 7:08

Then I felt better for a while:

15 - 6:41
16 - 6:41
17 - 6:46

I got sick again at the 18th mile. Again I had to stop for about 20 to 30 seconds.

18 - 7:18

At this point I thought about quitting. I had the flu much of the week, I was slowing down, I still had 8 miles to go, I was getting cold, I had gotten sick twice, I wasn't able to hold anything down, I had a huge blister forming on my right foot, and I just wanted to call it a day. I was thinking: How can I finish? Then I thought: How can I not finish? I had trained pretty hard for the race. Amber was waiting for me at the finish line. I had taken time off from church and travelled over a thousand miles to run. I was going to finish even if I had to walk.

I held up pretty good for a few miles:

19 - 6:55
20 - 6:55
21 - 6:51

At the end of the 22nd mile I got sick for the last time. There wasn't much left to get sick this time around. But I had to stop for nearly a minute. This one took all the energy I had left.

22 - 7:55

The last 4 miles were pretty much a death march. The blister on my right foot was screaming. Every other step was nothing short of painful. I just tried to stay under 3 hours for the race and made it by a mere 15 seconds.

23 - 7:30
24 - 7:42
25 - 7:50
26 - 7:38
.2 - 1:33 (2:59:45)

I found Amber after the race and got some much needed anti-nausea medicine. I was going to, and probably should have, taken it before the race, but I was worried that it would cause drowsiness. I had to take a couple of pills post-race. After a bath and laying in bed all day, I felt good enough to go polish off a plate of ribs and some serious ice cream.

It wasn't what I wanted from the day, but I finished. We'll try it again in Boston in four months.

I think the best part of the day was watching the marathon from our hotel room after we got back. It was so cool to see so many runners accomplishing their dreams. Some of them were out there for four, five, and even six hours. Each of them has their own story. Each of them was more than a finisher - they were a winner.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Laugh Loud: A Message of Hope

You can listen to today's message here.

1. Connect to the Source

From one man he created all the nations throughout the whole earth. He decided beforehand when they should rise and fall, and he determined their boundaries. His purpose was for the nations to seek after God and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him—though he is not far from any one of us. –Acts 17:26-27

I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. -John 15:5

O Lord, you have formed us for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they find rest in you. –St. Augustine

Belong to a Village

In numbers we are better off.

Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family. Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one.

Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ. –Galatians 6:2

Do the Right Thing

God blesses those who hunger and thirst for justice, for they will be satisfied. –Matthew 5:6

What are you hungry and thirty for? Well…if you want your hunger and thirst to be satisfied…Jesus says start with justice. Start with doing what is right. This Christmas that our hunger and thirst for life isn’t satisfied or quenched with what is under the tree.

To lend each other a hand when we’re falling…Perhaps that’s the only work that matters in the end. –Frederick Buechner

Go For Broke

Death twitches my ear. “Live,” he says, “I am coming.” –Virgi

Hope doesn’t come from sitting idly waiting for life to pass us by.

Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand. –Isaiah 41:10

Never measure the height of a mountain, until you have reached the top. Then you will see how low it was. –Dag Hammarskjold

Training Update

I have come down with a case of the flu or something and have no desire to run, eat, etc... I made it through the sermon, barely, and have been in bed since. Oh will give me an opportunity to catch up on my blog!

Sunday, November 9, 2008


Part of my legacy

I spoke about leaving a legacy this morning. You can listen here. Here are some of my notes:

Because of God’s grace to me, I have laid the foundation like an expert builder. Now others are building on it. But whoever is building on this foundation must be very careful. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one we already have—Jesus Christ. Anyone who builds on that foundation may use a variety of materials—gold, silver, jewels, wood, hay, or straw. But on the judgment day, fire will reveal what kind of work each builder has done. The fire will show if a person’s work has any value. If the work survives, that builder will receive a reward. -1 Corinthians 3:10-14

Let’s tell our young people that the best books are yet to be written; the best paintings have not yet been painted; the best governments are yet to be formed; the best is yet to be done by them. –John Erskine


“There is a critical difference between beliefs and convictions: a belief is something you hold on to, but a conviction is something that holds you. A conviction is a core value from God’s Word that anchors us, shapes us, permeates our lives, and becomes such a part of us that it’s who we are.” –Kerry and Chris Shook

The grass withers and the flowers fade, but the word of our God stands forever. –Isaiah 40:8

But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand. When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash. –Matthew 7:26-27


You can easily judge the character of a man by how he treats those who can do nothing for him. –James Miles


But Martha was distracted by the big dinner she was preparing. She came to Jesus and said, “Lord, doesn’t it seem unfair to you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work? Tell her to come and help me.” But the Lord said to her, “My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details! There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.” –Luke 10:40-42

The creation of a thousand forests is in one acorn. –Ralph Waldo Emerson

When you were born, you were crying, and everyone around you was smiling. Live your life so that when you die, you will be smiling, and everyone around you will be crying. -Anonymous

Training update

10 mile break-down run

3 miles at marathon pace
4 minutes rest
8 x 800 meters at 5K pace with 60 seconds rest between reps
4 minutes rest
3 miles at marathon pace

I felt great the entire run.

59:07 for the 10 miles - 5:54 per mile.

Saturday, November 8, 2008


I had a little problem at the wedding I did today. I made it through the first half -- no problem. I've done over a hundred, so I'm pretty good at them by now. When it came to exchange their vows, I didn't have that part in my script that was in my little leather folder. Nor did I have the part about the exchanging rings or the Unity Candle. As they looked at each other, I took a deep breath and went for it. Thankfully I have done enough weddings and I had it memorized. I was a nice wedding, thankfully I didn't mess it up.
Training Update
I ran with Gary, Dave, and Jalan from the Pedestrian Bridge to the top of the Lewis and Clark Monument early this morning. The bottom to the top of the bluff is about a mile and a half long. It is a pretty wicked hill. The view from the top is worth the climb. The temperature was a bit chilly and there was a cold north wind. We did 12 miles pretty easy.
View from the Lewis and Clark Monument

Friday, November 7, 2008

Leaving a Legacy

A few months ago, the family and I went to my mom's house in northwest Iowa. It is a little town, maybe a thousand people or so. Most are Norwegians. Many are farmers or at least want to be farmers. But times have changed. Today, the people work at a few small manufacturing plants and a food distribution center. There is a small grocery store. A couple banks and a gas station. I think there are four small churches. The people cheer for their 8 man football team in the fall. Although I haven't lived there for twenty years, when we walked through the streets or went to the local pizza place, the people still knew who I was and greeted me with a firm handshake or an occasional hug. Many of you have been to a place like this before.

There is a house one block due north from my mom's house. It is a dirty white and hasn't been painted in a long time. The roof needs replaced. A window in the garage is broken. The weeds are overgrowing pretty much everything. This is the house where my grandpa Adolf and grandma Elva used to live. The house looks much different than it did twenty years ago. It was immaculate. A big vegetable garden used to encompass much of the side yard. The lawn was mowed every few days and the flowers were watered early every morning. In the winter, smoke would come from the chimney from the wood fireplace that grandpa built by himself. During the other three seasons, many of the neighbors would gather on the front porch. You could usually smell grandma's baking as you entered the house. She kept the house spotless and sanitized. Although grandpa was born in Norway, every morning, when it wasn't raining, he would go out and raise the American flag on his white, oil-base painted flagpole.

Maybe somebody will buy the house and fix it up. Maybe not. Maybe some new family will create new memories in that house. Maybe it will just be torn down. Either way, I look at the house and part of me is sad. But thankfully, grandpa and grandma's legacy isn't that little house on First Street. Their legacy is years of investing their lives in others. Grandma was as loving and nurturing as you were going to find. She was a true servant. She embodied what grace is all about. Grandpa was hardworking and tough. He was frugal and thrifty. He was a listener and made some of the best lefse and coumpa this side of Oslo. More than anything else, he was wise.

I write this early on a Friday morning in my home office. Part of their legacy is in this house now. Part of who they are is who I am. Part of who I am is who our two boys (who are making the writing of this a bit challenging at the present time) are. Legacy isn't about stuff. It's about people. What kind of legacy are you leaving?

Fresh Lefse

Training Update

Nothing. No time. Busy day and I went to the Millard West football game tonight.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Norwegian Proverbs, Day 2

You don't know what a man is made of until he encounters hardship.
He who follows the river comes at last to the sea.
A lover should open his ears more than his eyes.
Silence is sometimes an answer.
Envy does more harm to the owner than to anyone else.
While there's life, there's hope.
Training Update
I ran 12 miles with Christy and Machelle this morning. My legs were pretty sore from helping a friend move last night. This weather is crazy. It was over 70 degrees at nine o'clock in the morning on November 4th.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Norwegian Proverbs, Day 1

If there were no fools, how would we recognize the wise?
What's done is done.
He is worth much who has learned much.
What a man sows he shall reap.
What mother and father don't teach, the world teaches.
Training Update:
8.5 miles easy around Lake Zorinsky before I picked Benjamin up after school.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Learn Humbly

This morning I spoke about suffering and humility. You can listen here. The following are my notes:

A fact of life: Pain happens and innocence is lost

I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world. –John 16:33

Sometimes what the Bible doesn’t say is just as important as what the says:

Not “IF you have trials and sorrows”
Not “You will have trials and sorrows”
It says “You will have many trials and sorrows”

Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying. –Romans 12:12

Another fact of life: Security is not found in the world

While people are saying, "Peace and safety," destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. -1 Thessalonians 5:3

You need not be afraid of sudden disaster or the destruction that will come upon the earth, for the Lord is your security. -Proverbs 3:25-26

Another fact of life: Pain and misery are not the same thing

Pain is inevitable, but misery is optional. We cannot avoid pain, but we can avoid joy. –Tim Hansel

Be Humble

Pride is concerned with who is right. Humility is concerned with what is right. –Henry Cloud

Humility is not having a need to be more than you really are.

To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. -2 Corinthians 12:7-10

Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourself. Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others too. –Philippians 2:3-4

Six Steps to humility

  1. Say you are sorry to your children, spouse, coworkers, customers, and other people in your life when you fail them.
  2. Get rid of any and all defensiveness when it occurs in you. What you are defending—the need to be more than you are—is not worth keeping.
  3. Embrace a spirit of gratitude for everything you have and any good treatment you get.
  4. When someone is hurt by you, listen. Try to understand what he or she is feeling and learn how you can make things better.
  5. Embrace your imperfections and the imperfections of others.
  6. Use failure as a teacher and a friend.

Innocence Lost. Grace Restored.

When hardship, negativity, or adversity comes into our life we can and should do one of two things:

1. We either fix the problem
2. We figure out the problem can’t be fixed and let it go.

If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude. Don’t complain. –Maya Angelou

How does one become a butterfly? You must want to fly so much that you are willing to give up being a caterpillar. –Trina Paulus

God’s law was given so that all people could see how sinful they were. But as people sinned more and more, God’s wonderful grace became more abundant. So just as sin ruled over all people and brought them to death, now God’s wonderful grace rules instead, giving us right standing with God and resulting in eternal life
through Jesus Christ our Lord. –Romans 5:20-21

Training Update:

I jogged to the Millard West track late in the evening. I hadn't done anything hard for a few days. It was warm and dark, but my legs were rested and I ran well.

2 mile warm-up

1K - 3:52 (6:16 / mile) - 600 meters jogging

2K - 7:40 (6:06 / mile) - 600 meters jogging

3K - 11:27 (6:05 / mile) - 800 meters jogging

4K - 15:19 (6:06 / mile)- 1000 meters jogging

5K - 18:58 (6:06 / mile)

2 miles cool-down

Saturday, November 1, 2008


Busy today with church stuff. Like 14 hours of busy. Thanks to Amber's parents for helping out with the kids. I wasn't able to run today. I think I'm getting slower by the day!

I did manage to catch the last half of the Texas Tech - Texas game. It was one of the best games I have ever seen!

Friday, October 31, 2008


I'm thinking that Halloween is just as busy as Christmas. David's pre-school party was at 9:30. Benjamin's party was at 2:00. Trick-or-treating started around 5:30. David was a cow. Benjamin was a Ghost Buster.

Training Update:

Because I had so much going on at the church and with the kids, all I had time for was 4.4 miles around the east lake. I'm frustrated that I didn't get a long run in this week, but my roles as dad and pastor come before my role as runner.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Thomas Aquinas

I read a little book about Thomas Aquinas last night. Here are some of his quotes to think about:
  • To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible.
  • Love takes up where knowledge leaves off.
  • If the primary aim of a captain were to preserve his ship, he would keep it in port forever.
Very insightful stuff.

Training update: No run today. I'm saving my legs for a long run tomorrow morning.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

30 Things I Would Do

I am doing a sermon series right now called "One Month to Live." The goal is to help people get the most out of this once to be lived and never to be repeated life that God gives us. If I knew I had one month to live, here is what I would try to do:
  1. Buy a lot of life insurance.
  2. Get a new picture taken of myself for the next four church bulletins.
  3. Run a 100 mile race. I have always wanted to do one.
  4. Spend a couple days having loved ones take care of me after the above-mentioned 100 mile race.
  5. Eat a lot of baby back ribs.
  6. Eat a lot of key lime pie and chocolate chip cookies.
  7. Watch a few of my favorite Seinfeld episodes.
  8. Get rid of all my alarm clocks.
  9. Spend more time thanking people.
  10. Forgive more.
  11. Spend less time worrying about what others think of me.
  12. Play more with the boys.
  13. Pray more for the boys.
  14. Listen more. Talk less.
  15. Spend a few days serving the oppressed and the marginalized.
  16. Spend a day or two at the lake hanging out with friends and tearing around on the wave runner.
  17. Be a comedian in a comedy club for a night.
  18. Play more with my dog.
  19. Sit down with AJ and write one last song.
  20. Go for one last run at Platte River State Park.
  21. Go for one last run with all my running friends and give them a sweaty hug goodbye.
  22. Preach the four best sermons I’ve ever preached.
  23. Have one last chili cook-off at the church and fix the contest so I win.
  24. Post-chili cook-off: Stand at the door and say goodbye to everybody, thanking you for sharing your life with me and thanking you for allowing me to share my life with you.
  25. Go visit my parents. Thank them and say goodbye.
  26. Write letters to both my boys and put them in a Bible. That way they would have a letter from their earthly father and their heavenly Father.
  27. Spend more time with Amber.
  28. Read the Bible more, pray more, and spend more time with God. I’ll be doing a lot of it, so it will be good practice!
  29. Invite others to do the same.
  30. Thank God for my life.

Training Update

It was a perfect day for running. I ran on the trail at Lake Zorinsky this afternoon.

1.75 mile warm-up

9 miles at my current marathon pace (about 6:25 per mile). My total time was 57:56.

I jogged .25 miles for a cool-down.

Much better than yesterday.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Waiting for Another Day

The plan today was to run 22.2 miles - 3 trips around Lake Zorinsky. The first lap was going to be at 7:15 per mile, the second lap was going to be at 7:00 per mile, and the last lap was going to be at 6:30 per mile.
After one lap I was doing great. It was easy, just like it should have been. I finished right at 7:15 per mile.
After two laps I just wasn't feeling it. I averaged 6:59 per mile, but wasn't feeling the best. I had a feeling that I couldn't do the last lap at 6:30 per mile. So, I called it a day and saved my legs for another day.
Sometimes life is like that. We have a plan and things don't necessarily go the way we want them to go. An old axiom exists: You can lose the battle, but still win the war.
Sometimes we just have to be flexible and be willing to make revisions when things don't go our way. We have to be willing to keep our eye on the final destination and not become too discouraged with the obstacles on the way. Some of the people who inspire me the most are people who overcome setbacks and move toward realizing their dreams in life!
I'll give it another try on Friday and count myself as blessed that I got to spend part of a beautiful fall morning outside.

Monday, October 27, 2008

A Sad Day

It was a sad day at the Finnestad house. Yesterday Benjamin's favorite show was:

Tonight he announced to be that he was going to watch a different show on channel 48. When I asked him how he like the new show, he said that he was digging it.

They grow up so fast.
Training update:
7.5 miles easy at 8:00 per mile, before I picked up the big boy from school.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Love Completely

This morning I continued my series: One Month to Live. The message was titled: Love Completely. It is about how to develop healthy and life-giving relationships.

Listen here.

Here are my notes:

Listen! It’s the voice of someone shouting, “Clear the way through the wilderness for the Lord! Make a straight highway through the wasteland for our God! Fill in the valleys, and level the mountains and hills. Straighten the curves, and smooth out the rough places. Then the glory of the Lord will be revealed, and all people will see it together. The Lord has spoken!” -Isaiah 40:3-5

The 3 Mountains of Relationships
  • The Mountain of “Misunderstanding”
  • The Mountain of “Me First”
  • The Mountain of “Mistakes”
We have to pray with our eyes on God, not on the difficulties. –Oswald Chambers

1. Climbing with the Rope of Acceptance

Therefore, accept each other just as Christ has accepted you so that God will be given glory. -Romans 15:7

Acceptance: Stop trying to change me and start cherishing me

Now the man and his wife were both naked, but they felt no shame. -Genesis 2:25

2. Securing Your Footing with Acts of Love

The only people with whom you should try to get even are those who have helped you. –John E. Southard


Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too. -Philippians 2:4


Before the Passover celebration, Jesus knew that his hour had come to leave this world and return to his Father. He had loved his disciples during his ministry on earth, and now he loved them to the very end. -John 13:1


For God is working in you, giving you the desire to obey him and the power to do what pleases him. -Philippians 2:13

3. Anchored by Forgiveness

Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. -Colossians 3:13

He who is devoid of power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. –Martin Luther King Jr.

We know what real love is because Jesus gave up his life for us. So we also ought to give up our lives for our brothers and sisters. -1 John 3:16

Begin Climbing the Mountain Today!

Say what you want to say when you have the feeling and the chance. My deepest regrets are the things I did not do, the opportunities missed, and the things unsaid.

Training Update

10 miles at easy at 8:00 per mile at midnight. I ran the F Street hills. A very quiet and peaceful run.

Saturday, October 25, 2008


I enjoy running by myself. I enjoy running with others even more. This morning I met with seven other guys. I kind of knew two or three of the other runners. Four or five of them are good friends of mine.
We started off at the new pedestrian bridge, crossed the Missouri River, and ran most of the 10 miles in Iowa. At 6:00 a.m. most of the running was in the dark.
A dentist, a heating and air conditioning guy, a UPS employee, a business process analyst (whatever that is), an accountant, a psychologist, and a pastor. Some of us are married. Some aren't. Some of us have kids. Some don't. Some are really fast. Some aren't. None of that stuff mattered. We just had fun. We poked fun at each other, enjoyed each other's company, and all look forward to running in Boston next spring.

Life is like that. We can do well by ourselves. But I have this feeling, and I have a feeling that you have a feeling, that God gives us each other for a reason.

I observed yet another example of something meaningless under the sun. This is the case of a man who is all alone, without a child or a brother, yet who works hard to gain as much wealth as he can. But then he asks himself, “Who am I working for? Why am I giving up so much pleasure now?” It is all so meaningless and depressing. Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone? A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken. -Ecclesiastes 4:7-12

Friday, October 24, 2008

High School Football

Benjamin, Amber, and I went to the Millard West vs. Papillion-LaVista with some friends. Three kids from our church all play for West and we wanted to see one of their games.

Although Amber is an alumni of Papillion-LaVista, we sat with some friends on the Millard West side and cheered for the second rated Wildcats.

It was a great game. Both teams played well, but Millard West played a little better as they remained undefeated.

I was thinking about teamwork after the game. It was easy to tell that the players and coaches on both teams had a special bond with each other. Something special exists in life when people can accomplish more together than they could collectively as individuals.

Training Update:

I'm running again. The legs are all better. I took it easy and just did one lap around the lake in about 50 minutes. 7.38 miles at about 6:45 per mile.

Thursday, October 23, 2008


Injury is the enemy of the runner. We are generally the unhealthiest of all athletes. We generally don't get the really painful injuries like football or hockey players. Most of ours are repetition based.
My injury wasn't from running. It was courtesy of my son Benjamin during a wrestling match. Let's call it a pulled upper leg abductor muscle and leave out any unnecessary details.
I enjoyed the extra hour the injury gave me, was thankful that I am generally healthy, and am grateful that I have a son who loves to wrestle with me.
Happy birthday to my sister Jane!

Jane is the old person on the top right. Her daughter, Alex, is the cute girl on the top left. This is what Benjamin and David looked like 18 months ago.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


As of last night, I'm injured. Not from running. But wrestling with a seven year old. I don't get injured much, but I really dislike being injured.

Patience (pā-shənz) is the state of endurance under difficult circumstances, which can mean persevering in the face of delay or provocation without becoming annoyed or upset; or exhibiting forbearance when under strain, especially when faced with longer-term difficulties.

"Let nothing disturb thee; Let nothing dismay thee; all thing pass; God never changes. Patience attains all that it strives for. He who has God finds he lacks nothing: God alone suffices." -Teresa of Avila

Patience helps us in all areas of life. It is kind of counter-cultural in the instant gratification society that we live in. But God wants to bless us with patience. Patience is a fruit of the Holy Spirit. (Galatians 5:22) Biblical patience isn't passively waiting. It is persevering towards a goal, enduring trials, or expectantly waiting for a promise to be fulfilled.

Patience isn't always easy for me. But, when I figure out how to be patient, my life seems to make the most sense. I suspect the same is true with you.

Remember this truth when times get tough: God alone suffices.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


I'm speaking about love this Sunday. Here is my article for Sunday's bulletin:

Nothing is more thought about. I don’t think anything is probably more talked about either. It is what we all long for.

It means different things to different people. The two teenagers think it is one thing. The young mother thinks it quite different. The couple celebrating their 50th Wedding Anniversary have a different perspective.

In the Bible the Greek word used for love is agape. It is interesting that agape is a verb. It’s not an adjective. It is not something we feel. It is something we do. A biblical view of love is not something like: “I am in love with him.” It is more: “I love him.” On the cross Jesus wasn’t thinking, “I’m in love with that person.” But he was able to say, “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.”

So what does this mean for us? Well, it means either nothing or it means everything. It means nothing if you want to continue to believe that love is something you feel. The problem with love as a feeling comes in a question: What happens when you no longer feel the love?

It means everything when we begin to understand that love is something we do. We do it when we feel like it. We do it when we don’t feel like it. We do it to people we feel like loving and we do it to people we don’t feel like loving. Love has nothing to do with the other person. It has only to do with our own character and integrity. Again: let me point you to our Lord on the cross.

When asked what the most important thing in the world was: Jesus said it was to love. Love God, love others, and have a healthy love of self. Paul tells us what love is and what it’s not:

Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

There is one more thing I want you to think about. Jesus says that the world will know that we are his disciples by our love. My dream for the church is simple: that we are lovers of God and lovers of people. It is the thing that we do. We invite others, we care for others, we pray for others, we serve others, we give to others, we forgive others, we encourage others, and on and on and on. And, we are blessed because we are loving. And, the world will know that we are disciples by our love.

Training Update:

2 mile warm-up.

5 miles with 400 at 5:45 pace followed by 400 recovery at 7:00 pace. Christy and I did 31:45 for the 5 miles.

2 mile cool-down.

Monday, October 20, 2008


After a week of getting ready for vacation, a week of being at Disney World, a late night (Saturday) and an early morning (Sunday) of throwing a sermon together, and a busy day on Sunday -- I was ready for some rest. Monday is usually the day I try to take off. I had a few things I had to get done, but enjoyed resting and spending time with the boys and the dog. Jesus promises that when we go to him, he will give us rest. (Matthew 11:28)

Training Update:

14.25 miles easy running at about 7:45 per mile. Running for a couple hours is rest for my mind!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Live Passionately

My sermon this morning, Live Passionately, was the second message in a series I am doing called: One Month to Live. You can listen here. I just kind of threw it together on Saturday night and Sunday morning, so here are some abbreviated notes:

1. Lessons from Expedition Everest

A truth of life is this: This biggest risk we can ever take is not taking a bunch of small risks along the way.

“Go and gather together all the Jews of Susa and fast for me. Do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. My maids and I will do the same. And then, though it is against the law, I will go in to see the king. If I must die, I must die.” -Esther 4:16

Somebody should tell us, right at the start of our lives, that we are dying. Then we might live life to the limit, every minute of every day. Do it, I say! Whatever you want to do, do it now. There are only so many tomorrows. -Pope Paul VI

2. Lessons from the Guy at the Beach

Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.

For we are God’s masterpiece. He created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. –Ephesians 2:10

3. Lessons from the Kid at the Beach

This is the day the Lord has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it. –Psalm 118:24

Life isn’t measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.

4. Lessons from the Kennedy Space Center

When you doubt that you can do something, remember that 40 years ago, that a man walked on the moon.

Jesus said: I tell you that truth, if you had faith even as a mustard seed, you could say to this mountain, “Move from here to there,” and it would move. Nothing would be impossible. –Matthew 17:20

5. Lessons from the Airplane Ride Home

In the event that our cabin pressure should change, an oxygen mask will be released from the overhead compartment. Please place the oxygen mask on yourself first before helping small children or others who may need your assistance.

Then Jesus said, “Come to me all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and you will find rest for your souls. –Matthew 11:28

You formed us for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they find rest in you. –St. Augustine

Training Update

It was nice to run in cooler and less humid weather. I ran with Samantha one more time before the State Cross Country meet on Friday. She won her districts last week and has a good chance to win, especially if she runs like she did today.

1.25 mile warm-up

800 meters, 800 meters, 400 meters, 800 meters, 800 meters, 400 meters with 60 seconds rest between each rep. The total time was 14:21.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Vacation, Day 3

Epcot Center was the destination of the day. I think you could spend a week there and not see everything there is to see or do everything there is to do.

Soarin' was probably the highlight of the day. It is an incredible ride where you fly over much of America. Incredible! Lots of other fun stuff as well. Benjamin got to help a SCUBA diver. We went on lots of rides and visited many of the countries in the World Showcase. Our dinner was at a Restaurant Marrakesh, a Moroccan restaurant. One of the belly dancers had a crush on Benjamin. I think he was quite fond of her as well.

The Illuminations fireworks / light show the most impressive fireworks show I have ever seen.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Vacation, Day 2

4:30 in the morning came pretty early. Like 4:30. I ate a blueberry Clif Bar, loaded up my gear, and drove to Disney. This race was very organized. I parked at Epcot Center and took the bus to the starting line.

It was a great race to run. It went through both the Magic Kingdom and Epcot Center. I found my place near the front at the start line. A few people, including a woman who was a dead ringer for my training partner Christy, budged in front of me. I figured I had 6.2 miles to catch them, so I was happy to spot them a few steps. I took it out in 5:45 per mile for the first 3 miles. I was in 7th place and closing on a group of three in front of me. I fell at about 3.5 miles on some wet asphalt. Nothing major. I got up. I slowed down the last 3 miles. Not because of the fall. More likely the heat and humidity, the tight turns at Magic Kingdom and Epcot Center, and a 22 mile run two days earlier. I managed to stay in 7th place out of about 3,000 runners. I won my age group and got some nice hardware.

The rest of the day was spent at the Magic Kingdom. We met up with some friends and had a blast. I think we did most everything at least once. The fireworks at night was awesome. Our favorite, probably because it was Benjamin's favorite, was Mickey's PhilharMagic. It was an incredibly fun 3-D movie. We left around 11:00 p.m. A very long, but great day!

Benjamin at Splash Mountain

Enjoying some turkey legs

Benjamin and friends

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Vacation, Day 1

Thanks to our friend Mark who was kind enough to pick us up at 4:15 in the morning to take us to the airport. Our two flights to Orlando were uneventful. We got to Orlando around noon.

I thought I would save a few bucks by renting a car from Advantage Rent-a-Car. The axiom "you get what you pay for" is generally true and is true with Advantage Rent-a-Car. Oh well, it got us around for the week.

We went to Disney World of Sports to pick up my race packet for the 10K race in the morning. Quite a nice place.

After some late lunch / early dinner at Chick-Fil-A, a restaurant that is somehow missing from the Omaha landscape, we went to check into our housing for the week. Thanks to our friend Paula for letting us stay at the Horizons Marriott. It was a great place!

That night Amber, Benjamin, and I just hung out in our villa and went swimming in the swimming pools.

Benjamin sleeping at the car rental place

Benjamin exploring our villa

A room with a view

Friday, October 10, 2008

I Need a New Hobby

I think I need a new hobby. This morning was long run day. I had to get it done before we go to Florida tomorrow. It was a beautiful morning for 22+ miles. Three laps around Lake Zorinsky. I am pretty sore right now and am at least wondering if I need a new hobby or not. Other than my calves, thighs, feet, hamstrings, and stomach I feel pretty good.

1st lap was 53 minutes in 7:09 per mile
2nd lap was 51 minutes in 6:53 per mile
3rd lap was 49 minutes in 6:37 per mile

Total was 22.2 miles in 2:32:58 at 6:53 per mile.

Glad to have it done and think I'll stick with this hobby for a while longer.

Thursday, October 9, 2008


I was super crunched for time today. I only had about 45 minutes to run and it was between 5:15 and 6:00 this afternoon. I left from my house and went to 180th and F Street. Then I turned around and went home. I did another mile or so in my neighborhood. Every step was on concrete. Not the best surface to run on. There is no give. As I ran down 180th Street I longed for a soft dirt trail surrounded by trees and wild animals. But, I took what I had available.

Life is kind of like that. I heard somebody say recently that one of the keys of a good life is to enjoy what you have and not to long for what you don't have. So when God gives you concrete or something similar...just enjoy it!

6.5 miles pretty easy at 7:30 per mile.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008


Today's workout was difficult. I met with Christy at Lake Zorinsky early in the morning and we did the following workout:

1.5 miles easy running

2.5 miles at marathon pace (15:42)
4 minutes rest
6 x 800 meters at 5K pace (2:50) with 1 minute rest between reps
4 minutes rest
2.5 miles at marathon pace (15:37)

1.5 miles easy running

I was glad to be done. The 800s about killed us!

Life is a lot like running. Difficult times make us stronger. They are not pleasant at the time, but they condition us to be stronger when adversity comes in the future.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


Grace is one of those things you can't earn but can only be given. I have been struggling in my runs lately. Probably because I have been upping my volume and intensity. Today was an exception though. It was a beautiful day. I was going much faster than normal and it was much easier than normal. What a great run on a great day. I didn't earn this hour. But I will gladly accept it as a gift from God. 9.5 miles in a little over an hour.

Instead of thinking about earning God's grace; let's be open to receiving God's grace. He has a lot of it he wants to give to us.

Monday, October 6, 2008


When I was in college, I changed my major four times. I started with history. Not practical enough for me (at the time - I see how it is practical now!). Then I tried public administration. I found it to be quite boring. Then I studied political science. I liked it, but didn't find the job prospects to be to great. So a few years later (yes, it took me more than four years) I graduated with two degrees: accounting (I wanted a job) and economics (these were my favorite and most interesting classes).

Fifteen years later I consider myself an amateur economist. Very amateur. I know enough to be dangerous and that's about it.

The subject still fascinates me. Economics is kind of like the weather -- people tend to talk about it a lot more when it is bad than when it is good. It seems that people are talking about economics more now than we have since at least the late 1970s. One of the interesting things about economics is that Jesus talked about the subject more than he talked about any other subject.

So read the following at your own risk. Here are my thoughts about the economy:
  • Long-term and historically, the stock market always increases. There has never been an exception to this rule.
  • The chronic federal budget deficits have started and will continue to take their toll on the economy. It is ethically irresponsible to borrow money from future generations. We are sacrificing long-term prosperity for short-term prosperity.
  • Certain sectors of the economy are in crisis: the airline industry (most on in bankruptcy), banking and finance (Have you read the news lately?), and American automobile companies (Have you checked the price of Ford or GM stock compared to what they were 5 years ago? Ouch.)
  • The cost of health care inflation far outpaces the general inflation.
  • For the first time in a long time, home values are dropping at unprecedented levels AND new construction is at its lowest level in over two decades.
  • With the exception of Norway and Dubai (both very small countries with large oil reserves), per person, the United States is still the most prosperous country in the world.
It will be interesting to see what happens with the economy by the end of the year with the upcoming election and Christmas season. I'll write more later.

Training Update:

5:30 A.M. - Easy 8 mile run through Elmwood and Memorial Parks with Henryiard at 7:20 per mile pace.

2:30 P.M. - Easy 6.5 mile run on the Lake Zorinsky Trail by myself at 7:45 per mile. Just beat the rain.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

A New Focus

Here is my sermon from this morning.

Here is my column from this morning:

Like many of you, I am busy. Some of you are probably a little bit busier than I am. I am probably a little busier than some of you. For many of us, it probably depends on the day. Busyness can be good. To the store owner, busyness generally means business which is good. Busyness isn’t always a good thing though. Sometimes we find ourselves spending too much time and energy on things that, in the grand scheme of things, don’t really mean a whole lot.

About a year ago I had LASIK surgery. It was an incredible experience. I remember shortly after the surgery that I peeked from under my mask because I was curious how good I would be able to see. For the first time in my life I could see clearly without my glasses. I looked at the birds in the distance and was amazed at how well I could see. The next morning I woke up and out of a 24 year habit, I looked for my glasses. I realized I didn’t have them or need them. I looked at the box on the television and I could see the numbers and they were clear. My eyes could now focus correctly and I could see.

A few days later I was getting ready to do a wedding. A small problem came up. Actually it was a big problem. Even though I could see things at a distance, my eyes hadn’t fully recovered and I wasn’t able to read. I have easily done over a hundred weddings, but don’t quite have the entire script memorized. Even if I had time to memorize the ceremony, it wouldn’t have mattered because I couldn’t read it to memorize it. I generally don’t get nervous before I speak, but I stood in front of the wedding party and the congregation without any notes. I guess my nervous energy, a few years of experience, and the grace of God got me through the wedding.

Focus is a choice and a habit. We can choose to see the birds in the distance and we can pretty much choose if we are able to read the small print. We can choose if we will let the details and duties of life distract us or if we will pour the majority of our time and energy into the things that matter most to us and, even more importantly, the things that matter most to God.

Today I am talking about focus. Next will we will begin a new series that will continue the discussion. By considering what we would do with our life if we only had a month to live – we can focus and change our lives. I’m grateful that you are along for the journey with me.

The best is yet to come…


Training Update:

Not much time for a workout today. Church in the morning. Benjamin and I sold popcorn in the early afternoon. We had small group tonight. I got the kids bathed after that.

I ran with Samantha, a fast 15 year old girl at four o'clock this afternoon. She is training for the High School State Cross Country Championships in a few weeks and has a good chance to win.

We jogged for a few miles to warm-up. We ran 2K (1.25 miles) at her 4K race pace. We got some water and jogged a half mile. We then ran a half mile at a little faster than her 4K race pace. We jogged a little bit more to recover. We finished with a quarter mile to simulate the end of a race for her. We were flying. We jogged back to our cars. Nice workout (about 5 miles total) on a warm day.

Saturday, October 4, 2008


The family and I took a drive to Iowa this afternoon to Ditmar's Orchard to get some fresh apples, a few pumpkins, and hang out together on a beautiful afternoon.
Training Update:
I had planned to take the day off from running, but decided to go for a 7.62 mile run instead of watching the 4th quarter of the Missouri vs. Nebraska football game. I think this Nebraska team may be worse than last year's team, if that is possible. It was a good run though. Nice night and I felt good.

Friday, October 3, 2008


I'm talking about focus on Sunday morning. Here is what I have come up with so far...
Focusing a camera – Creating lasting memories
He told them, “Go into the middle of the Jordan, in front of the Ark of the Lord your God. Each of you must pick up one stone and carry it out on your shoulder—twelve stones in all, one for each of the twelve tribes of Israel. We will use these stones to build a memorial. In the future your children will ask you, ‘What do these stones mean?’ Then you can tell them, ‘They remind us that the Jordan River stopped flowing when the Ark of the Lord’s Covenant went across.’ These stones will stand as a memorial among the people of Israel forever.” -Joshua 4:5-7
To change one’s life: Start immediately. Do it flamboyantly. No exceptions. –William James
How can God direct our steps if we are not taking any?
Focusing the projector – Being authentic
But Ruth replied, “Don’t ask me to leave you and turn back. Wherever you go, I will go; wherever you live, I will live. Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God. Wherever you die, I will die, and there I will be buried. May the Lord punish me severely if I allow anything but death to separate us!” -Ruth 1:16-17
Before his death, Rabbi Zusya said, “In the coming world, they will not ask me: ‘Why were you not Moses?’ They will ask me: ‘Why were you not Zusya?’”
Focusing a microscope – Being accepting
Now Jephthah of Gilead was a great warrior. He was the son of Gilead, but his mother was a prostitute. Gilead’s wife also had several sons, and when these half brothers grew up, they chased Jephthah off the land. “You will not get any of our father’s inheritance,” they said, “for you are the son of a prostitute.” So Jephthah fled from his brothers and lived in the land of Tob. Soon he had a band of worthless rebels following him. –Judges 11:1-3
If you can learn a simple trick, you’ll get along a lot better with all kinds of folks. You never really understand a person until you consider things from his or her point of view. –Harper Lee
Focusing a telescope – Keeping our eyes on God
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. –Hebrews 12:1-2
O Lord, you have formed us for yourself, and our hearts are restless till they find rest in you. –St. Augustine

Photo by Steve Wall

Training Update:

16.2 miles this morning with Christy at about 7:40 per mile. Easy running and good conversation is always a joy in 45 degree weather with blue skies and a bright sun that is beginning to warm the day. Two laps around Lake Zorinsky plus another mile and a half.

Thursday, October 2, 2008


I woke up this morning around 4:30, put on my favorite shirt: "I eat marathons for breakfast", ate a Blueberry Clif Bar, and drove to a trail head at Lake Zorinsky. The plan was to run 22 miles at about seven minutes per mile. I could tell after about 4 or 5 miles that I was going to fail this morning. My mind said "yes" but my body was saying "no". After 10 miles I decided that I would slow it down a bit and only do 15 miles. I averaged about 7:20 per mile for 15 miles.
I failed this morning. Failure is a part of life. Failure isn't a bad thing unless you just don't try or just don't care. The biggest failure in life is the failure to care enough to try. All great people are great because they failed. But they didn't let their failures define them. They risked failing, embraced failure, and learned from their failures.
Here's the deal. Failure isn't the opposite of success. Failure is better thought of as a precursor to success.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The Daddy Dental Company

For some strange reason I find that I like to pull teeth. This morning, Benjamin noted that one of his teeth was ready to fall out. I convinced him that it would be best if he let me extract it. I pulled out what a dentist would call the upper right lateral. (Yes, I had to look that up!) Anyway, I think if I wasn't a pastor I would be an oral surgeon.

Training update:

I can't believe is is October 1st already. Only about two months to go before the California International Marathon. 10 miles easy running on 180th Street and the Zorinsky trail at 8:00 per mile very early in the morning. Very lethargic and tired.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

A Thousand Words

Training Update:
Perfect weather. The temperature was in the mid 40s and it was sunny. 8.5 miles at 6:20 per mile was the goal for the morning. It wasn't too difficult, for the most part. I was just a little fast on most miles, after starting at 6:31 for the first mile. I plan to bump it up to marathon race pace (6:20 per mile) for 10 or 11 miles in a few weeks.
I rowed on the Concept 2 for about 30 minutes in the evening.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Where I Run

Here are some pictures from Corey Collmann of the trail at Lake Zorinsky where I usually run. These are some nice photos taken about a week ago.

Training Update:
10 miles pretty easy at 7:30 per mile. At Lake Zorinsky.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

A Little Bit about a Lot of Things

I talked about faith today in church. You can listen here.

We had a bunch of new people over to our house after worship this morning. I always enjoy Starting Point because I get to know new people--something that is difficult to do on Sunday morning. I love listening to people's stories and hearing about their dreams in life. Today's group of people were excited about church and a fun group to hang out with.

It was boy's night tonight at the Finnestad's. Amber went out with some friends for a well-deserved night of fun. David, Benjamin, and I had lots of fun of our own playing and wrestling.

Speaking of playing, Nebraska looked awful last night in their football game. Even though the game was close at the end, Nebraska couldn't run the ball, missed tackles, and made lots of silly mistakes. Missouri on Saturday night. If Nebraska doesn't play better, this one will be scary.

Congratulations to occasional training partner and friend, Gary, for getting his Boston Qualifier this morning at the Omaha Marathon. Congratulations as well to regular training partner, Christy, for winning the Omaha Half Marathon this morning. Happy 40th Birthday to occasional training partner Dave. We won't be in the same age group for another year and a half!

A new world record was set this morning in the marathon in Berlin. Haile Gebrselassie ran an astounding 2:03:59. That's under 4:44 per mile for 26.2 miles. Crazy.

It was good to see Lonnie Gibson in church this morning. She and her family moved to San Antonio last summer. She was back in town for a wedding. Lonnie is a frequent reader and occasional contributor to this blog. We miss having her and the family around.

Training Update:

I gave the legs a rest today and worked out on the Concept 2 Rowing Machine.

15 minutes easy rowing.
25 minutes of 1 minute harder rowing with 2 minutes of easy rowing for recovery.
10 minutes easy rowing.

14000 meters total in one hour.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

2 Weddings in 60 minutes

I did two weddings today within 60 minutes and the two weddings were about 10 minutes apart. Both weddings were great and it was a privilege for me to be a part of both of them.

At both weddings I said something like this (I figured nobody would be at both weddings, so I had no problem repeating myself. Ironically, one other person was at both weddings!):

As of today, you are no longer two, but one. You come into your marriage relationship as individuals and you will not lose your identity, rather you will use your individuality to create and strengthen your marriage relationship.

Today you promise that you will love, honor, and comfort each other to the last of your days.

Today you promise that you will cherish each other and be faithful to each other always.

Today you promise that you will do these things not just when you feel like it – but for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health – even and especially when you don’t feel like it at all.

Today you give away part of your freedom.

Today you take on each other’s burdens.

Today you bind yourselves together in ways that are even more painful to unbind emotionally than they are to unbind legally.

What is it then that you get in return?

Not very much, but the one thing you get is really cool. You get each other.

Assuming you have any success at all in keeping these promises, you will never have to face the world quite alone again. There will always be the other to talk to, to listen to. If you are blessed, even after the first passion passes – you’ll still have a kindness and a patience to depend on and a chance to be patient and kind.
There will be someone to get through the night with, to wake the new day beside.

You will both have lives apart as well as life together.

But a marriage made in heaven is one where a man and a woman become more richly themselves together than the chances are either of them could have managed to become alone.

[The above verse was mostly written by Frederick Buechner]

To Brain and Lisa and Rob and Julie -- I pray for years and years of faithfulness and fruitfulness in your respective marriages.

Training update:

20 miles at 7:30 per mile with Chris, Dave, and Dave. We started at five thirty in the morning and finished two and a half hours later at eight o'clock. We hit Elmwood Park, Memorial Park, and the Keystone Trail. Great run with some great guys.

Friday, September 26, 2008


I'm talking about faith on Sunday morning. I had a great time researching this week and can't wait to share on Sunday. Here is some of the work:

What Christian faith is not:
  1. The ability to manipulate God. This approach only sees faith as having one aim -one fruit - a life of ease and blessing.
  2. The adherence to a set of beliefs. Yet I am not ashamed, because I know whom I have believed. 2 Timothy 1:12 (NIV)
  3. A blind leap into the dark. Reason is our soul's left hand, Faith her right. -John Donne

What Christian faith is:

  1. A biblical definition: Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for. By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God's command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible. -Hebrews 11:1-3 (NIV)
  2. A gift from God. And now these (gifts) three remain: faith, hope and love. -1 Corinthians 13:13 (NIV)
  3. Faith is like radar that sees through the fog. -Corrie Ten Boom
What Christian faith means for us today:


For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith-and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God- not by works, so that no one can boast. -Ephesians 2:8-9 (NIV)


What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, "Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed," but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. -James 2:14-17 (NIV)


“You don’t have enough faith,” Jesus told them. “I tell you the truth, if you had faith even as small as a mustard seed, you could say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it would move. Nothing would be impossible.” -Matthew 17:20 (NIV)

Faith makes things possible, not easy. -Unknown

Faith is raising the sail of our little boat until it is caught up in the soft winds above and picks up speed, not from anything within itself, but from the vast resources of the universe around us. -W. Ralph Ward

Faith enables persons to be persons because it lets God be God. -Carter Lindberg

Faith can move mountains, but don't be surprised if God hands you a shovel. -Unknown


By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. -Hebrews 11:7 (NIV) and “But God remembered Noah and all the wild animals and the livestock that were with him in the ark, and he sent a wind over the earth, and the waters receded.” -Genesis 8:1 (NIV)

A little faith will bring your soul to heaven, but a lot of faith will bring heaven to your soul.

Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase. -Martin Luther King Jr.

Training Update

Another bad bad. I don't know why, but I'm just not feeling it lately. And easy 8 this morning with Dave and Dave through Elmwood and Memorial Parks long before the sun came out. 59 minutes.

Kid's Update

David on the Mac

Benjamin getting ready 50s Day at School