Wednesday, April 30, 2008
I was sitting on a bench in the middle of the Citta Universitaria garden, waiting for my friend Juan to show up. Juan was supposed to meet me at 2:30 but because my appointment before didn't show, I was able to eat with him a little earlier. I was sitting with the sign for "Conversations in English", which I have a love-hate relationship with, when a dude walked up that looked vaguely familiar. I don't know if we had met before but he asked if I was with the English conversations group and I said yes, but we are done for the day. However, since I was waiting on a friend, I could hang out and talk with him and his girlfriend for a while.
Lauren joined us as we chilled on the lawn and began to talk about where they are from (she is Romanian, he is Italian), what they study (architecture), and what they think of Italian vs. Romanian culture. I kept checking my phone and calling Juan, and got no answer. The conversation went deeper and soon we were talking about their ideas of God. She is Orthodox and he is Catholic but both said they were not sure what they believed. In the hour and a half that we sat and talked, we got to share life. I loved it, talking about our college experience, theirs, how we grow and change, and how Christ has affected my life (and Lauren's). It was a complete gift from God to have this time open, to be able to talk about this stuff, and to be able to plan out that we are going to meet next week and read a bit of John together and talk about it. I love how God changes my plans, and makes it better. How he arranges for someone to hear the good news of Jesus Christ, when all I knew is that I was frustrated that I got stood up. God is Good. Amen.
And since I won't be able to post on Friday, here is 5 Free Death Cab for Cutie downloads
And for good measure, you can download The Weepies in a great live concert. I just bought their new cd, I dig it, and you can listen to all the songs from this concert before you download it... really, at least check it out . If you don't like it, I am not offended, I just thought it was pretty good.
Friday, April 25, 2008
The New Frontiers - I know I have mentioned this band before, but if you click on their name, you can listen to the whole album (jury is still out on the album for me) and download the song Mirrors (which I liked).
Micah Dalton : Ok, so I apologize that this is not free, downloadable music, but I have to give this guy a shout out. I have met him, man has got soul, and I just bought his new album and it was completely worth the $10 I paid. So check out his new album, Pawnshop, and listen to the songs from it on his myspace. I hope you enjoy.
Yes my friends, it is risky business to post a song I have written. Many of you do not know, but I have tried to write songs in the past. Most were horrific, one was decent and my brother wrote music for it and it was good. Well, I tried my hand at writing another song recently. Since I am still working on this epic post on the topic of redemption, here is my attempt to give you something to read... enjoy, dont be too harsh in your critique. If it had a title, I would call it "Abraham's Stars."
He saw her from afar, or at least across the room.
The beautiful girl that somehow didn't belong there.
He wasn't sure how to ask because of the butterflies,
but if that night was a cliche, he was lost in her eyes.
He got caught staring and did a guilty look away;
and thought I'm too old for this, at the age of 25.
But unknowingly she stole it, that little piece of his heart,
and he followed that theif as she went outside and that became the start;
And she danced, beneath Abraham's stars
and she laughed, sweet music to his heart
with Abraham's stars as the only light,
it began, yea it all began that night
Knowing he had to make a move, he uprooted his feet.
Picked up his jaw, his courage too, and opened his mouth to speak.
To this day, he'll still say, it was like waking from the dead.
"Yes it's true, i'll dance with you" were the words she said
And they danced, beneath Abraham's stars
and they laughed, sweet music to the heart
with Abraham's stars as the only light
it began, yea it all began that night
If it was a dream, the ending he could create.
But life's no storybook and happily ever after is only for Disney.
He couldn't control, he could only trust, when the end is out of sight
But he thought, "This is enough" as he held her close that night
Friday, April 11, 2008
My team went to Tropea last weekend, a beautiful seaside town in the south and had some great adventures. Check out the pictures below to get some idea. Hopefully soon I will have a post I am working on about redemption, something that has been on my mind a lot lately, but in the meantime, here are two encouraging stories (at least they were for me).
Me and Steve got to hang out with our buddy Big P, a Italian guy who speaks brilliant English over a beer Tuesday night. We ended up hanging out for 3 hours, laughing and telling stories and comparing observations about life and God. One of the things that stuck out to me is that P is, well, intrigued by us. He asked (for the second time) "I am not just part of your job, right? You guys just don't want me to join your club?" It was good to be able to tell him honestly that 1) I wouldnt be hanging out at 1 AM with him if I didn't want to be, so I think he is a cool guy 2) I could care less if he becomes a member of Agape and 3) I would love to see him become a Christian because I think it is the best thing in the world I can share with people. He accepted the answer and we had a great night together. It was just so cool to hang out and be able to talk about the Gospel, God's love, our Fall and the Redemption offered.
Second encouraging story is from Bible Study on Wednesday. We had two girls come (one a believer, one not) and we looked over some passages in Luke and talked about them. One of the girls, Rosa, shared her testimony about how she came to know Jesus. Her story literally caused my jaw to drop. It began with seeing Jesus in a cartoon on TV and wanting to have a relationship with this "cartoon hero" because the other little girls on the TV show said that Jesus loved them. The story is too long to tell here, right now, but needless to say it followed a journey through the Russian Orthodox Church, Catholic Church, Evangelical church into a relationship with Christ. It included being disowned and kicked out by her Muslim family, going back to them to serve them, and having one of them eventually tell her, "This God you serve must be the real God." It was an encouragement for me to hear her story but also for the other girl there to hear how Jesus Christ changes lives. Yes, Amen, Christ is alive and in the business of changing lives!
This Free Music Friday is courtesy of Ben and David. Thanks to all who have been sending me links to people they enjoy, because it makes it a little easier for me to post music for y’all…
So House of Heroes is courtesy of Ben. House of Heroes is a band hailing from
Josh Woodward is courtesy of David. Not entirely brilliant, but I liked the song I'll Be Right Behind You and I Want to Destroy Something. If you like it, go to his website and download a boatload of stuff.