Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Imaginary Jesus

Matt Mikalatos is the first person I've ever known* who wrote a novel and actually had it published. The first time I heard about Matt was through my brother, Dan, who while watching me desperately jump through hoops to get my own novel published stated, "Yeah, my friend Matt's been trying to get published too." Or something along those lines. It was a long enough time ago that I've forgotten.

So, I felt some kind of personal satisfaction when the news came through (from Matt's own blog: http://www.mikalatos.blogspot.com/) that his book, "Imaginary Jesus" was going to be published (for real).

"Imaginary Jesus" is not of a genre of books that I would normally (read: ever) read. But since I can satisfy my reading desire with the back of a shampoo bottle I knew it would be no sacrifice to jump out of my chosen genres for a few days and read the book I've been hearing about for the last so many months.

"Imaginary Jesus" is wacky and off the wall and fast moving and vastly more entertaining than the back of a shampoo bottle. Even the "Thanks page" and the random quotes from famous and non-famous people pages amused me. It's about Matt's own journey (fictionalized) to discover the real Jesus among the many "imaginary" Jesus' that we have created to suit our own purposes.

I think that thing that really caught me about the book was the idea of imaginary Jesuses**; those Jesuses that we have created in our mind to suit our lifestyles. Matt introduces us to dozens of imaginary Jesuses in his book and but I didn't recognize my own imaginary Jesus there.

As I read the book it was amazing how fast the concept of imaginary Jesuses made complete sense to me and how quickly I identified my own fake Jesus.

He's the "It's OK to sin if you have a good enough excuse Jesus."

OK, my names are not as catchy as Matt's "Magic 8-Ball Jesus" and "Testosterone Jesus," but he's real enough to me. I appreciate a book that makes me think and opens my eyes to something I've never seen before.

Great job Matt. Thanks for giving hope to the rest of us and thanks for opening my eyes to something I'd never considered before.

*As well as you know someone over the Internet.
** I have no idea if this is how you pluralize Jesus or not...

Garden: July 27

This is a picture from the front of my garden looking back. The bench was actually a swing that is now going to be made into a bench (will not remain there on the grass).
Banana tree, growing like a weed. When are you going to give me some fruit???
However, right next door my beans are coming in like crazy! My firstfruits!


I have a confession to make.

I've never really liked reading the Psalms. I know. Shhhhhhh.

But it's the truth. I think somewhere in the pride of my heart I figured reading the Psalms were for people who couldn't handle the rest of the Bible.

I'm admitting to this really shameful personality trait because I've recently had a change of heart.

This is the first year we are teaching the subject: "Psalms" in our Bible College. It's in the 2nd year curriculum. Guess who is teaching it. Yeah, moi.

I get chills almost everyday in class as I teach from the Psalms and we discuss the Word of God. I have heard the voice of God speaking to me more in the past week or two than I have in a long time. I've stepped out on faith and clung to the words of wisdom I've recent discovered in the Psalms and have sat back quietly and allowed the Lord to be the great eternal judge that He is. I've received supernatural peace in my inner being, as well as, seen transformations in the lives of other people. And I had nothing to do with it, I just reaped the benefit.
Man, I wasted a good 20 years of my life avoiding the Psalms.


I've been teaching through Leviticus in my Old Testament class the past couple days. It's one of my favorite books in the Bible, especially when teaching. I think it's because it's just such a surprise, yet so critical to the whole theme of the Bible.

My first year Bible students are doing well. Their English is weak, but their enthusiasm for the Word of God is great.

Four were sick today so we just had discussion in class instead of teaching (wouldn't want them to miss any critical teaching from Leviticus.) The students were full of questions, which believe me, is something I have not experienced in other years of teaching. Very exciting.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Karuna Land

I finally got out there to take a picture of the land we are in the process of buying for our new Karuna Children's Home.

Cows are extra.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Bought Land For Karuna Kids


After much prayer we purchased a piece of land today on which we will build a home for our Karuna Kids as well as a church and who knows what else (well, the Lord knows...)

We sold our old Karuna Home building and with that money and some money from our school we bought 10222 sq feet of land located less than 2 miles from our house. It feels good. Actually, it feels great.

Keep praying that all will progress smoothly from here on out and that we'll raise the money to build the Karuna Housing Project within this next year.

(land pictures to come...)

Friday, July 09, 2010

Three Days In

I've been teaching for the last three days in Bible College and have had a blast, although my legs hurt from standing so much. Out of the habit I guess.

I'm teaching Old Testament to the 1st Year Students. This is the third time around for me. And the Book of Psalms for the 2nd Year students - 1st time.

We're still waiting around for the new students to come. All the month of may we were unsure of whether we could take new students or not and that uncertainty lost us some time in recruiting, but they're coming in slowly but surely. Hopefully, by this Monday most of the students will have arrived.

There's no class today because our boys have to move into a different building and the the girls have to move into the building the boys are vacating. Works out well, I can catch up on some studying.

Madam Madam

In India the teachers are called "madam" by the students. Today I asked G. what her Madam's name was and she said, "Madam Madam." Makes sense - to a 3 yr old.

This reminds me a serious pet peeve, and I'm not afraid to share it.

People who have the same first name as last name.

Michael Michaels, Richard Richards, William Carlos Williams - had to look at that one on the bulletin board all 10th grade.

Have you absolutely no imagination??!! This seriously bothers me. Seriously.

Monday, July 05, 2010


I took an unplanned hiatus from blogging. Just because I didn't feel like it.

Stuff's been going on but - well, the truth is, Facebook has somewhat ruined me for blogging.

But I'm still committed. That's why I'm here. Today.

Here's some stuff that's been going on - in random order:
1. Our Bible College reopens for the new year today. This is the first year we have 1st Year and 2nd year students. Very exciting, going to make me very busy - teaching two classes a day, but it's worth it.

2. I've lost 3 birds over the last week, just keeled over dead. Searching for a veterinarian in our city. Very sad.

3. I've realized that my tomato plants are actually baby eggplant plants. Shoot.

4. Today India is "closed." I guess that means they are on strike - the whole country. O. says it's because of the outrageous inflation over here. Hence, not sure if #1 will happen today or not.