Friday, March 23, 2012

Next Slice of Life

It has flat out been an almighty long time since I sat down to write.


Well, anything not work related.  And even that is mostly someone else’s words to get someone else’s message out to someone else.

But for me to just let my words ramble, it’s been awhile.  Busy living life, I guess.

I bought a house.  That was a bit of a time for me.  Waiting to see if there was any possible way it could happen, waiting for the disappointment which I was sure was to come, waiting for the final straw that would break this camel’s back.

But all those black words were held back by some unseen Hand.

Instead, the mortgage was granted.  The money came through.  The miracle was known.

Then came the packing and the moving and the unpacking.

Well, the unpacking is still to be done.  I figure I have 30 years.  I can take my time.  No one else here seems to mind.

It’s different, this home ownership thing.  I like it, mostly.  I haven’t really been here much, truth be told.  I have work to do and people to see and relationships to build.  It’s a good season, but busy.

Spring has opened its door to us, too.  One day we had snow – lots of it, heavy, slushy wet and chilly snow.  Piled up hither and yon and making the world a dangerous place to drive.

The next day it was spring.  50 and then 60 and then 70 – almost 80 degrees.  We’re not even done with March, yet, and it’s practically summer out there.

But some seasons are like that.  You don’t expect them to end.  You think they are going to be here awhile and you kind of get used to them.  The crowded space gets comfortable.  The negatives surrounding you become bearable, even familiar enough that you don’t try to change them.



The season changes.

You wake up and it’s 70 degrees and you own a house with a yard and a garage.  It doesn’t seem possible, this new season, but there it is.  You can’t deny the flowers budding.  You can shut your eyes, but when you open them, the sun will still be shining.

I want to walk on this water to test it out and see if it’s real, but I’m afraid if I push too far the curtain will fall and I’ll realize it was only a short act before the final scene. 

Maybe that’s what’s kept me from writing.  Putting the words on paper gives them credence and life. 

So.  Here they are.  The words that need life.

I own a house.  I have a college degree.  I have a car.  There are two books floating around the universe right now with my name on the cover as author.  Me.  Kris A. Newman.  My kids are grown and amazing.  I have a vast, eclectic collection of friends and kids and people I love.  I have memories of incredible, frightening, hilarious, amazing times through which I’ve lived.

I crossed the bridge.

The season changed.

I’m alive.

Thanks, God.

Ok.  Let’s start the next slice of time…..

Monday, March 12, 2012

One Hundred and Forty

Below is another winner from the January blog contest hosted by my friend, Mark Showalter.  I found this piece to be particularly relevant to the times we live in.  It's a great picture of the way this generation communicates.

Kudos to Corey Boyte for taking a simple thought and giving it great depth!  Count your words wisely today.

One Hundred and Forty

The number 140 holds more power than any other number.  It limits thoughts, it is the barb-wired fence of ideas, it is the cataclysmic death to a train of words formed together to make a sentence. Unlike most other social media sites, 140 commands a person to use word combinations to prove a point in a way that requires skill, determination, and a perfunctory grasp on whatever language they speak (if you're like me, we can both forget about that last statement).  You may have a world changing idea. You may have a universally renown invention just waiting to be shared with all mankind. You may hold a thought that will absolutely revolutionize your surroundings. If it ain't 140 characters or less, baby, it ain't gonna happen. Unless of course you go ahead and post that idea and then all of your followers have to click on a link that takes them to a special page where they can view the entirety of your message, increasing the chance of picking up spam by, oh let's say, 36%. I mean let's face it. Who clicks on those links anyway? If it ain't under 140, Skippy, I ain't gonna read it.

And now they are storing every tweet. Yep. Big brother. Eagle eye. Conspiracy central. Logging. Every. Tweet. Imagine what that will look like. I wonder who's job it is to have to read and file Paris Hilton's drunken tweets, Miley Cyrus' gleeful thank yous for another sold out show, words of unspoken love that make one want to puke (hey, I’m guilty of this one), President Obama's calls for changes, or your pastor's encouraging words?  Could it be possible that the whole world that Jesus talked about in Matthew 28 may be able to be squeezed under the microscope of social media and be seen as 140 characters? And last time I checked it was in our job description to reach this whole world. Could it be done in 140 characters? The chances are looking very good my friend.

I was reminded of the power these 140 characters have several months ago after the passing of Steve Jobs. Inspiration hit. I was ready. I was determined. I whipped out my iPhone (thank you Mr. Jobs) and pecked away.  So I tweeted:

“The creator of the iPad, iPhone, iTouch, and iMac now faces the iAm.  Life is short folks. “

And that was that.

And then I got retweeted. And retweeted. And retweeted. People I didn't even know retweeted me. People who are so far out of my league in ministry. Yet they liked something I said good enough to retweet it to hundreds of other people. Would it have been effective if it had been more than 140 characters? Absolutely not.

I believe a true Christian will behave in a 140 character fashion. Concise, readable, inspiring, captivating, retweetable. Not having to look to other people to get their  "rest of the story" but rather they write their own story. And the words of their story cannot be found on the pages of black and white, phones, or computer screens. No. Their story is written in Red, dipped in the ink of the Blood of the Lamb, forever changed. Amazing grace, how sweet the sound. 

To the reader of this post, you just may be 140 characters from changing the world. Use them wisely.