Thursday, June 21, 2007

Pandora's Box

A few days ago, I was clued into a music-site ( that allows you to enter the name of an artist or band that you like, then it will arrange a randomized play-list of groups/artists that are similar in style and sound to that artist. It is a fantastic web-site, and their name is especially apropos. I have found that once I opened this Pandora's box I have been unable to close it, only I completely enjoy what streams out. If you haven't already, check it out.

Monday, June 18, 2007


I've often been told not to settle, demand more of yourself, and never lower your expectations. As the Leafblads arrived in Mankato, I began my new job, and life begins to normalize again, I think all that advice is bunk. I need to settle. If I don't, life will settle for me, and I'll quickly find myself stretched and pulled beyond all expectations, burning myself out faster than the shortest of matches. I've decided I'm settling.

The nature of being a youth pastor is that there is always something more to do, another place to be, or another student with whom I should have lunch. The pace begins to quicken and suddenly I'm engulfed in three or four straight 14 hour days, and I begin to forget the sound of my son's cooing, the beauty of my wife's welcome-home smile, or the sanity of just stopping to watch "Deadliest Catch." When do I find time to read? To pray? To study? Am I a program director or a pastor?

Let me be clearer. The church is not forcing me into this pattern. I'm doing it. As this week begins, I'm writing out a schedule and settling in, demanding less of myself, and lowering the standard. Nothing less than that -- rather nothing more -- is required.