“But now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how can you turn back again to the weak and worthless elementary principles of the world, whose slaves you want to be once more?” – Galatians 4:9
I particularly appreciate the part where Paul writes “or rather to be known by God.” He knew me and he knows me.
“Now you, brothers, like Isaac, are children of promise.” – Galatians 4:28
“Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted. Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.” – Galatians 6:1-2
I had a great day, actually. Around one o’clock I met up with The Preacher’s Daughter. She showed me the town. We stopped by Lake Washington and walked for a bit before she showed me some of Bellevue. Ultimately, we ended up in Redmond. We had lunch at a fancy restaurant and then went to the movie theater and saw “Pursuit of Happyness.” I enjoyed both the movie and the lunch. We were able to talk for quite a bit during the six hours we spent together. It was a lot of fun and I’m glad to have new friends here.
I watched “Love Actually” tonight. I love that movie. I first saw it on TBS a while ago and enjoyed it quite a bit. The actual version is a bit more risque, but still a good movie. It’s one of those movies that gives hope to those of us who tend to feel undeserving of it. The movie has great actors in it and the lines and plot shape up decently, too.
My night went downhill after that point, however, but I will not go into the details here.
If any world leader of recent times has deserved to die for crimes against humanity, Saddam Hussein, the former dictator of Iraq, topped the list. And now he’s been executed by hanging. A fitting end. This is the best news out of Iraq in 2006.
New York Times
And the party begins:
I compiled this list today while on lunch at Starbucks and drinking a peppermint hot chocolate. I’ve allowed them to woo me with holiday flavors during the past week. I could save for retirement with the money, but sometimes the flavor is worth it.
- new license plate
- consolidate IRAs
- pay off credit card
call The Pastor’s Daughter back
- visit the Purple House again
drinks with The Man from Kirkland
- send copy of resume to KK
- grow investments by at least 10%
- aggressively pursue 401k growth for next 15 to 20 years
- achieve merit-based pay raise in April 2007
- receive promotion by Fall 2007
- gain more experience, technical skills, and proficiency in my job functions
- retain 25% higher salary by Q3 2009
Short-term I should be able to take care of within a couple of months. The Long-Term Goals are obviously more aggressive and will take more time to accomplish. In some ways I’m a bit shocked to see myself planning towards long-term targets. I’ve never thought about my life much more than four years in advance. It’s not that I am now in all respects; I don’t know what job I’ll have in four years. However, I’m able to establish general themes and financial goals I can strive for regardless of where I live or what career I have.
I’m not sure how successful I will be. I can only do so much to achieve these things because the results will be determined by outside factors I cannot ultimately control, but I’ll do what I can do.
The coffee probably isn’t helping me reach these goals, but I’m sure somebody else is benefiting from my consumption. If I’d only bought Starbucks a few years ago.
Last night, I was an idiot. Let’s just summarize the story by saying I drank a $9.99 bottle of 2005 Australian wine. This morning I drank a lot of water and had several Tylenol in preparation for church.
Confession is a weekly part of the church service. The pastor gives us a few moments to pray to God before launching into a generic confession for all of us. I never know how to summarize all I’ve done wrong in the brief time we’re given to confess. “God… all of this…”
The assistant pastor knew I had no one to spend Christmas with so he found me an invitation to spend Christmas with a family from church. I don’t know any of them well, but they seem like a nice family. It’ll be weird being the outsider and the “new” guy, but I just want to have somewhere/anywhere to spend the day without wrapping myself in a selfish bubble of self-pity and woefulness.
I also talked to The Pastor’s Daughter after the service today. She invited me to lunch with the pastor’s family. We ate at a nice Mexican restaurant. The pastor’s wife asked a lot of intriguing questions.
“Is your family full of love and grace?”
Yes, yes they are, and I realize it more every year that passes by. And that’s why I miss them so much this Christmas.
The lunch went fairly well other than feeling awkward and out of place. It might have to do with being asked questions about love and grace when I sat there thinking about how much love and grace I was being shown despite the wickedness in my life. Going from Saturday night wine-drinking binge to lunch with the pastor is a strange transition.
Then again, everyone who passes into Christ’s love ultimately undergoes the same transition.
Well, something to think about. I want to straighten things out, but it’s hard.
Merry Christmas to you all and thanks for reading my glass-half-full musings.
Update: Irony of irony. From my landlord for Christmas I did receive a bottle of wine and some Guylian dark belgian chocolates. I’m thankful for the chocolates.