Category Archives: Boone FUMC


I managed to make it through this Sunday’s Sermon/Interview. I don’t think that I embarrassed myself too much and I think at least a few people were touched or were able to relate to my message.

I don’t want to re-hash the experience, but I would like to thank Jesse, Jay, Shannon, Jason, Carrie and Nader for coming to support me. I also would like to thank Lowell for being there. My family was incredibly supportive as well.

I do want to share a video that Andrea found on the internet and played during the sermon of the song No One Else Knows by Building 429. A song that is very important to me.

Of course if you subscribe to this blog via e-mail or RSS Feed, you will actually have to go to the website to see the article.

Also, even though the video credits Casting Crowns with this song, I assure you that it is Building 429’s song.

Sunday, Sunday, Sunday

My church, the First United Methodist Church of Boone, is doing a series of sermons this summer where the Pastors interview a member of the congregation. This Sunday is the second sermon of this kind. The lucky person being interviewed is me.

I’m not really sure how or why I got got chosen for this honor, but if you are awake and bored with your church (or maybe you are looking for a church) or just want to see me go down in flames, you can come to our church this Sunday and watch.

There are two worship services.

A traditional worship service at 8:55.
A contemporary worship service at 10:45.

All are welcome to come. After all, our church motto is: “Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors”


Sunday was an interesting day for me.

I started the day as a greeter for church. There were a couple unique events at church on Sunday. 4 of the churches in the area combined choirs and toured their churches. One of the other 4 churches is the Central Christian Church, so it was a rare Sunday that I got to see my grandma sing.

She is in the lower left side. She is the one that looks like my Mom. I should point out that this picture was taking during rehearsal. Normally those pews are filled up.

Lowell’s youngest Holden was baptized.

Lowell’s family with Phil

Plus I’m throwing up a bonus image of the Jesus and rice that Andrea used during Children’s Time.

A small group of us, (I will now call them my Inner Sanctum) went to the House of Bricks to see Shawn’s band Act of Gravity. They put on a good show despite not being aided by the sound guy.

There was a pretty sweet moment when Shawn was rocking the drums so hard the banner for the Albino Spiders came partially unfurled.

After Act of Gravity was done, a carnival act performed. They billed the dude as a fire eater, but I’m not convinced that I couldn’t have duplicated the same act.

He put either a sugar cookie or a pineapple (although to me it looked like pound cake) in 151 then lit it on fire and ate it. It wasn’t all that impressive.

The other interesting thing about the fire eater was that he was dressed like a drag queen, but had put enough makeup on to look like a mime. Very interesting.

After the hard rocking show, we were joined by a few other friends (that I will now refer to as my Inner Circle) at Hu Hot. I think an enjoyable time was had by most and it set up what I was hoping would be an enjoyable Memorial Day.

False Snake Hype

I have been looking forward to today for quite some time.

After church Lowell and I attended a Methodist Men board meeting. I learned a lot about our future activities. We are serving the food at the Mother-Daughter Banquet this coming Saturday. We are serving Fellowship in the month of June. We are running the Church Food Stand for some Cattle Shows coming up. We are serving breakfast during one of the days of the coming tractor rally. So there are a lot of things going on this Summer. The convenient part is that most Methodist Men activities take place on Saturdays so it won’t be a scheduling conflict with Ames on the Half Shell.

At 2 PM Teresa and I showed up for an Exclusive Series Preview of the upcoming season at Stephens. I was a little bit worried that we had wandered into a nursing home tour when we got in line to get our packet of information. We were the youngest people in the line by at least 40 years. Well by 50 years for me.

The presentation was on the stage at Stephens. I haven’t been on the stage at Stephens since High School. From the stage you can really see what a beautiful auditorium it is and can tell why it is the Building of the Century.

They did a little program and announced the upcoming season:

  • September 24 – Sweeney Todd
  • November 2 – Vanguard Jazz
  • November 6 – Movin’ Out
  • November 9 – Jerusalem Symphony
  • November 23 – Lorie Line and her Pop Chamber Orchestra
  • December 3 – Dirty Rotten Scoundrels
  • December 18 – A Skaggs Family Christmas
  • January 25 – Goodnight Moon/Runaway Bunny
  • February 8 – The Peking Acrobats
  • February 13 – The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee
  • February 20 – To Kill a Mockingbird
  • March 27 – Blue Note Records Tour
  • April 9 – The Drowsy Chaperone
  • April 14-15 – Stomp
  • May 1 – Australian Chamber Orchestra

From our preliminary discussions it seems that Teresa and I are slightly at odds as to what we want to go see. The one event I know that I want to see for sure is the Blue Note Records Tour. Teresa isn’t overly interested in that one. For some reason she thinks that Kenny G. and David Sanborn is jazz. Perhaps, I have a friend out there that likes real jazz that I might be able to persuade into going.

At the end of the presentation they asked everybody to look at the back of their folder. If you had stickers on the back you won a door prize. Teresa had stickers on the back of her folder. I was expecting some cheesy door prize based on the lousy corporate events I had attended in the past, but what Teresa won was pretty sweet. She won 2 free tickets to see the Jerusalem Symphony (over a $100.00 value) and a couple of their CDs. So on November 9th, we will be going to see the Jerusalem Symphony for free and you can’t beat that with a stick.


After the presentation we went up to Roland to check out the new house that Monica and Jeff are renting. When we got there we were warned to watch the grass because they had seen snakes everywhere in the yard. I was excited. I haven’t seen a snake yet this year. I looked all over the yard (even in a compost pile) but I didn’t find a single snake, let alone snakes. I was the victim of false snake hype.

I got the nickel tour of their new domicile. Monica, Jeff, Suzie and Cassie were painting. I grabbed a few pictures of them at work. I always love watching other people work.


Sweet Windmill. I think it needs to be sanded down and painted, but Monica thinks it looks awesome rusty. I respectfully disagree. It looks awesome rusty if you are going for some kind of Nouveau Texas Chainsaw Massacre look, but a splash of bright red would really do wonders for this thing, but it isn’t mine.

Suzie slacking off.

The bathroom color.

Jeff painting the master bedroom

Monica crawling.

Suzie playing with the master tape.

Cassie painting the living room.

I think it is going to a pretty sweet place when they are done painting.

Ames on the Half Shell

The Band Selection Committee that I was on that kind of half ass did our job and has completed its work. Here is the list of bands that are going to be playing Ames on the Half Shell.

  • May 30 – Redzband
  • June 6 – Murphy’s Law (Family Night)
  • June 13 – Burnin’ Sensations
  • June 20 – Vivace
  • June 27 – Box Brothers
  • July 11 – Saucy Jack
  • July 18 – Kountertop
  • July 25 – 3AM Band

If you can only make it to one Ames on the Half Shell event this year, I urge you to attend Kountertop. They are excellent. Unless you have small children. In that case, come on June 6 and see Murphy’s Law on Family Night. There are going to be a lot of cool things for small children on Family Night.

Olivia’s Stitching Time

I went to the church on Wednesday to take a group photo of the stitching group that Teresa started in Olivia’s name. Here is the result.


This picture is going to go in the church bulletin, so in the end it will end up looking something like this:


I took a couple candid photos of the group.







Then Becky grabbed the camera and took this picture.


Olivia’s Stitching Time meets two more times before taking a hiatus for the Summer. It is a group for people to come and work on and share their sewing projects. It meets from 6:30 – 8:30 on Wednesday nights in the Parlor of the First United Methodist Church. All are welcome to come.

I also fired off a few other random pictures in the sanctuary.




I might be prejudiced, but I think that we have a beautiful sanctuary. I’d love to seriously photograph it at some time in the future.

Usher Observations

I’ve been an usher at church the last two weeks. I usher again this coming Sunday. At first I was a little bit leery about being an usher. The main problem is that our traditional worship service begins at 8:55. That means to begin fulfilling the many usher duties (handing out bulletins, taking attendance, collecting tithes, taking compliments on how good you look in a suit and tie… the list just goes on and on) you have to be at the church at 8:20.

Getting to church that early is a bit of a struggle for me. Actually getting to church at 8:55 is a bit of a struggle for me. I’m not sure why. I don’t have to get up any earlier than I get up for work and Saturday nights are not a big social night for me. In fact, it is rather frequent that I don’t make it to the church on time. I frequently have to pull the move where I sneak in when people are shaking hands and greeting one another, which is about 5-10 minutes after the service has started.

Being an usher I can’t pull that slick move. The bulletins aren’t going to hand themselves out and who are the people going to tell that they look good “all dressed up”.

However, I have realized that their is a plum benefit to being an usher that more than assuaged my doubts about the position. More than offset my fear of screwing something up during the big time Easter service, but I need to give a bit of backstory before I explain this benefit.

I was hoping to lead of this entry with a picture of the FUMC’s cornerstone, but I just never made it down to the church to take such a photo, so I settled for the picture of our outdoor cross. If memory serves me, the church was built in 1890.

Now I don’t know how much it has changed over the last 100 or so years because I wasn’t around in 1890. However, in the Fellowship Hall, there is a picture of the sanctuary from 1893. The sanctuary has changed since 1893, but the pews in the picture appear to be the same pews that are in the church to this day.

On a personal note, I really like the picture of the sanctuary in 1893. I love old photographs. I love old photographs of places I know even better. What I don’t like is that whomever put this picture together, put the mat in wrong side out. What should be the back of the mat is facing out. It annoys me a little bit, but that is my own set of baggage.

I made a trip to Living History Farms the last time I took some vacation time from the computer mine. While I was touring the 1900 Farm, I heard a couple of guys comment to Shannon about how people were shorter back then.

This was the highlight of the tour for me. I knew what was coming. I know it is a deep felt issue for Shannon that people learn that people were not shorter back then. I had heard this information from her before.

She calmly explained to them that people weren’t shorter back then. Furniture was smaller back then. Dressers were shorter because people had less clothes. Beds were shorter because people slept sitting up.

I have no reason to doubt the veracity of Shannon’s statement. She took the time and energy to do the research. What she says is undoubtedly true. However, when I sit in our church’s 1890 era pews almost every Sunday, I have to wonder if she checked on the average height of Methodists from the 1890 era. Almost every Sunday that I’m packed into that dinky little pew, I feel like Methodists must have been shorter in 1890. I feel it in my legs and knees.

The plum benefit of being an usher is legroom. I don’t have any when I sit in the pews. It is infinite when I am an usher. I am basking in it. I’m bathing in it. If I haven’t made it clear enough yet, I’m loving every second of it.

When you are an usher you get to sit outside of the sanctuary. You could say that having to sit outside of the sanctuary is a drawback to being an usher. I don’t think it is really much different than being inside the sanctuary. When Andrea leads a prayer she says, “I invite you to be in an attitude of prayer”. I think the attitude just outside the sanctuary is the same as it is in the sanctuary.

So I’m looking forward to one more week of legroom and then it is back into the sanctuary with the rest of the sardines.

Relay for Life

Lowell and I discussed putting together a Relay for Life team for 2008 shortly after the 2007 Relay for Life event ended. Then we did nothing.

A couple of Sundays ago they announced in church the need for members for our 2 Relay for Life teams. Lowell quickly signed us up for a team.

Last Sunday after completing my ushering duties, I made my way down to Fellowship. Once there I received my packet.

Methodist Team A Relay for Life Packet

As I’ve been going through some of the information in the packet I notice that there is a Team Spirit Award this year. The team with the most points wins this award. Some of the ways that teams earn points are:

  • Hold a team fundraiser prior to the Relay
  • Sell 15 daffodil bunches during Daffodil Days
  • Buy/Sell 20 Luminaries
  • Decorate your campsite
  • Have 1 or more team members in the frozen t-shirt contest
  • Have 1 or more team members in the Miss Relay contest
  • All team members attend the Opening Ceremony
  • 8+ team members attend the Closing Ceremony
  • Team member(s) walking every hour of the relay
  • Bring a survivor to the relay who has not attended before

Some of the Fun Laps include:

  • Masquerade lap
  • Safari lap
  • Reality show lap
  • Pirate lap

Perhaps my favorite part of the handout is the “Be Prepared for These Possible Activities…” section:

  • Miss Relay Competition (for Men and Boys only!!)
  • Frozen t-shirt Contest
  • Biggest Eater Contest
  • Dance Lap
  • Biggest Eater Contest
  • Water Balloon Toss
  • Shave a Balloon Contest
  • Fear Factor Challenge

The Miss Relay Competition intrigues me. I happen to know a very successful Drag Queen (albeit retired), but that might be considered cheating. I also happen to know a Dance Machine and a person with a competitive eating title to his credit. I also know a guy that has a lead on a pretty good pirate costume. Hmmm… some planning might be on the horizon.


Today Logan and I concluded our Confirmation mentoring journey. It took 10 weeks, but now he possesses some of my wisdom and that could make him a very dangerous teenager.

We celebrated the conclusion of the mentoring program by dining at Hu Hot. Then we had our picture taken.


The only thing left for us to do is to burn the confirmation book. I know that seems strange, but it needs to be done.

God Wants to Use Us!

Perhaps I shouldn’t judge or rate the sermon’s given in my church, but there are definitely some that speak to me a quite a bit more than others. During Phil’s sermon on Sunday he gave a sermon that spoke to me. During the sermon he gave a list of people from The Bible that God used to make a powerful impact in the world. The list consisted of the person’s name and their shortcoming. Perhaps not even shortcomings, but in the ways that some people in the world might have seen them as broken. Some might have seen these as weaknesses or faults.

After the service I asked Phil for the list. He told me that it was in his folder and to go grab the list and we would make copies. I got to his pulpit and opened his folder, but I didn’t see the list, so I grabbed his folder and brought it to him.

I handed it over to him and told him that I didn’t want to go rifling through his stuff.

He said, “You don’t have to worry about that. When I let my hair down it doesn’t go that far down.”

So we went into the church office and he made me a copy of the list. The list was from an article by Dr. Robert A. Schuller. Below is the paragraph from that article with that list:

The Bible is filled with people God used who, by today’s standards of ability and nobility wouldn’t have qualified for much at all.

Noah was a drunk,
Abraham was too old,
Isaac was a daydreamer,
Jacob was a liar,
Joseph was abused,
Moses stuttered,
Gideon was afraid,
Samson was a womanizer,
Rahab was a prostitute,
Jeremiah was too young,
David was an adulterer,
Elisha was suicidal,
Isaiah preached naked,
Jonah ran from God,
Naomi was a widow,
John the Baptist ate bugs,
Peter denied Christ,
all of the disciples fell asleep while praying,
Martha worried about everything,
the Samaritan woman had several failed marriages,
Zacchaeus was too small,
Paul was too religious,
Timothy was too young and had ulcers,
and Lazarus was dead.

I think that it is a powerful list to meditate upon when we want to sit in judgment upon other people. It is a powerful list to meditate upon when we want to sit in judgment on ourselves. Who are we to do God’s work? We are who God made us to be, even with all of our faults, shortcomings and mistakes.

Somebody Bet on the Bay

I ran into and old friend by the name of Sean Clubine at Best Buy yesterday. For some strange reason we began recounting horror stories about our time spent at Wesley Woods.

Then he asked if I went to Mexico for confirmation. I didn’t.

He asked because he wanted to know if I remembered eating in a restaurant where they were holding a cockfighting match.

Now I wish I would have went on that trip to Mexico. Cockfighting wasn’t in the brochure.