Buy this book…

January 19, 2009 — Leave a comment

I want to recommend a great book to you. The book is Beauty is Calling by Randy Elrod. Some of you know Randy through his blog, Ethos.

Here’s what I wrote a review about Beauty is Calling on Amazon:

I recently received my copy of Randy Elrod’s book, “Beauty is Calling.” Being familiar with Elrod’s watercolors, I was looking forward to a feast for the eyes. “Beauty is Calling” did not disappoint. “Beauty” is a fantastic collection of beautiful art combined with a selection of quotations from everyone from Cicero to Lady Bird Johnson. As I spent time with each new work as I turned the page I was transported. Elrod’s art does that to you. My two personal favorites in the book are “Beauty” and “Dreamin’.”

Another great thing about Elrod’s book is that proceeds from the sale of the book go to support Kalein, an artist development center. Kalein “offers artists and leaders a creative and passionate environment of encouragement and mentorship to better discover, develop and discipline heir dreams” (from the Forward).

I would highly recommend this wonderful book. It will take you to another world – a world of beauty. Not only that, but when you buy the book you can feel good knowing that you are supporting the arts and developing the next generation of artists.

So take a look at Beauty is Calling. I really believe you will enjoy it – and you’re money will be going toward a great cause!

Oh yeah… if you’re in the Nashville area, join Randy for a book signing – he’s calling it a “Book Tasting” – this Friday evening, Jan.23 from 5-7 p.m. at Landmark Booksellers in historic downtown Franklin, TN. Complimentary wine & cheese and a free wine glass and signed print if you buy a book(s).

Ever wonder what the #1 song was on the day you were born? Wonder no longer! Check out THIS SITE.

The #1 song for May 22, 1966: When a Man Loves a Woman, by Percy Sledge.


Where’ Waldo?

January 14, 2009 — Leave a comment

I just realized two things:

One, it’s been two weeks since I’ve posted. And two, almost all of my recent posts have been video related.
So… here’s another video: Uncle Jay Explains the News.

Here’s the new bumper I just finished for the sermon series (Backstory) we start this Sunday at New Covenant Community Church in Fresno, CA.

Check out the high quality version HERE.

Quote of the Day…

December 31, 2008 — Leave a comment

This one is from Steve Jobs:

“The problem with Microsoft is they just have no taste. They have no taste and I don’t mean that in a small way, I mean that in a big way. They don’t think of original ideas and they don’t bring much culture into their product… I am saddened, not by Microsoft’s success. I have no problem with their success. They’ve earned their success (for the most part). I have a problem with they fact that they just really make third-rate products.”

Little Drummer Boy…

December 24, 2008 — Leave a comment


Heart-Warming News…

December 23, 2008 — Leave a comment

The following is from The Life of Reilly by Rick Reilly of ESPN:

They played the oddest game in high school football history last month down in Grapevine, Texas.

It was Grapevine Faith vs. Gainesville State School and everything about it was upside down. For instance, when Gainesville came out to take the field, the Faith fans made a 40-yard spirit line for them to run through.

Did you hear that? The other team’s fans?

They even made a banner for players to crash through at the end. It said, “Go Tornadoes!” Which is also weird, because Faith is the Lions.

It was rivers running uphill and cats petting dogs. More than 200 Faith fans sat on the Gainesville side and kept cheering the Gainesville players on—by name.

“I never in my life thought I’d hear people cheering for us to hit their kids,” recalls Gainesville’s QB and middle linebacker, Isaiah. “I wouldn’t expect another parent to tell somebody to hit their kids. But they wanted us to!”
And even though Faith walloped them 33-14, the Gainesville kids were so happy that after the game they gave head coach Mark Williams a sideline squirt-bottle shower like he’d just won state. Gotta be the first Gatorade bath in history for an 0-9 coach.

But then you saw the 12 uniformed officers escorting the 14 Gainesville players off the field and two and two started to make four. They lined the players up in groups of five—handcuffs ready in their back pockets—and marched them to the team bus. That’s because Gainesville is a maximum-security correctional facility 75 miles north of Dallas. Every game it plays is on the road.

This all started when Faith’s head coach, Kris Hogan, wanted to do something kind for the Gainesville team. Faith had never played Gainesville, but he already knew the score. After all, Faith was 7-2 going into the game, Gainesville 0-8 with 2 TDs all year. Faith has 70 kids, 11 coaches, the latest equipment and involved parents. Gainesville has a lot of kids with convictions for drugs, assault and robbery—many of whose families had disowned them—wearing seven-year-old shoulder pads and ancient helmets.

So Hogan had this idea. What if half of our fans—for one night only—cheered for the other team? He sent out an email asking the Faithful to do just that. “Here’s the message I want you to send:” Hogan wrote. “You are just as valuable as any other person on planet Earth.”

Some people were naturally confused. One Faith player walked into Hogan’s office and asked, “Coach, why are we doing this?”
And Hogan said, “Imagine if you didn’t have a home life. Imagine if everybody had pretty much given up on you. Now imagine what it would mean for hundreds of people to suddenly believe in you.”

Next thing you know, the Gainesville Tornadoes were turning around on their bench to see something they never had before. Hundreds of fans. And actual cheerleaders!

“I thought maybe they were confused,” said Alex, a Gainesville lineman (only first names are released by the prison). “They started yelling ‘DEE-fense!’ when their team had the ball. I said, ‘What? Why they cheerin’ for us?'”

It was a strange experience for boys who most people cross the street to avoid. “We can tell people are a little afraid of us when we come to the games,” says Gerald, a lineman who will wind up doing more than three years. “You can see it in their eyes. They’re lookin’ at us like we’re criminals. But these people, they were yellin’ for us! By our names!”

Maybe it figures that Gainesville played better than it had all season, scoring the game’s last two touchdowns. Of course, this might be because Hogan put his third-string nose guard at safety and his third-string cornerback at defensive end. Still.

After the game, both teams gathered in the middle of the field to pray and that’s when Isaiah surprised everybody by asking to lead. “We had no idea what the kid was going to say,” remembers Coach Hogan. But Isaiah said this: “Lord, I don’t know how this happened, so I don’t know how to say thank You, but I never would’ve known there was so many people in the world that cared about us.”

And it was a good thing everybody’s heads were bowed because they might’ve seen Hogan wiping away tears.

As the Tornadoes walked back to their bus under guard, they each were handed a bag for the ride home—a burger, some fries, a soda, some candy, a Bible and an encouraging letter from a Faith player.

The Gainesville coach saw Hogan, grabbed him hard by the shoulders and said, “You’ll never know what your people did for these kids tonight. You’ll never, ever know.”

And as the bus pulled away, all the Gainesville players crammed to one side and pressed their hands to the window, staring at these people they’d never met before, watching their waves and smiles disappearing into the night.

Anyway, with the economy six feet under and Christmas running on about three and a half reindeer, it’s nice to know that one of the best presents you can give is still absolutely free.


You can read more from Rick Reilly HERE.

Fun for Everyone…

December 20, 2008 — Leave a comment

Another funny one from Anjelah Johnson…

Fun for the Ladies…

December 20, 2008 — Leave a comment

The girls in the office find this hilarious!