Sunday, June 29, 2008


We see shattered glass next to vandalized cars every now and again. Heck we even see the police helicopter circle overhead searching for a home burglary suspect on occasion. But until sometime last week this has always been something that's happened "to them" and never to us. Lulled into a false sense of security in our otherwise safe neighborhood Amy and I sometimes failed to lock the door to our garage below the condo we live in. I used to think "whats there to steal down there except an old Camry and a bunch of books about the bible!" Well that and the ipod I use when studying in my make shift office in the garage, oh and the 500 gigabyte external hard drive filled to the rim with precious family memories and photos, not to mention the 350 gigabyte 'digital' library I was building to take oversees that included among other things all of my 5 years worth of seminary work! That's what there was to take. Who ever it was that took advantage of our laziness did not appear to be interested in my library but the hard drive and the ipod were taken. The guy even left the ipod cover, just so I have something to reminisce about.

Moral: don't ever assume in a sin cursed world full of the living dead (Ephesians 2:1-2) that you or your belongings are EVER safe. The wickedness of men never sleeps and neither must our vigilance concerning both the things in this world and the truth that has been entrusted to ever slumber for a moment.


Back up everything on your computer to an external hard drive and then quarterly or so burn all that stuff to a couple of DVDs. I thought I was smart following step one of my advice but quickly learned as I looked at the dust free patch on my desk where my hard drive used to be that it was not enough. Don't end up like me instead be smarter. There's no going back and undoing what was done but there is still time for the rest of you- act now!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Dr.'s, Dr.'s, Dr.s!

Most of you who read this will already be familiar with all the appointments our Noah has had and will continue to have with various doctors, but I thought I'd put a post up anyway.

Noah saw the pediatric GI doctor on May 30. He was referred to this dr. because of the problems he was having with tolerating certain foods. After taking a thorough medical history and examining Noah in his office, the doctor concluded that he was most likely dealing with an allergy problem and not a physiological problem. His reasoning was that if it was something physiological, Noah would not discriminate with the food--he would be sick with everything he ate. This conclusion was despite the fact that his blood allergy test came back negative. The doctor recommended that we see an allergist, so our pediatrician made the referral and Noah's appointment is on July 10th.

Noah had his regular 12 month check-up with his pediatrician on Monday, the 16th. We were obviously already aware of his motor development delays, but the doctor thinks Noah has some other delays as well, particularly in the areas of speech and growth. His main concern for this visit was that Noah's weight remained exactly the same since his 9 month appointment. Zero ounces gained. Some good news since the appointment: Noah is doing better in the eating department, and will now accept yogurt (good source of protein and contains more calories than regular baby food) and he is doing better drinking his liquids (though it is a very tedious process which involves a 1 mL medicine dropper. Thankfully Daddy is more than patient and happy to help in this department)!

We also got to see the pediatric neurologist at UCLA on Monday. It ended up to be an all-day event, but he evaluated Noah and ordered a myriad of lab work for possible diagnoses. He is trying to see if the problem is related to Noah's brain, muscles, genetics, or a combination of these things. He also said many times these things go undiagnosed as just a benign muscle issue and that would be the best. So, that is what we are hoping for. We had to return the next day to do all the lab work. Ten vials of blood and a urinalysis later, Noah decided that was not how he wanted to spend a Tuesday morning ever again! The poor little guy. But he did great in spite of the poking and prodding. One of the tests has to be sent out, so we will have to wait 2-3 weeks for the results. In the meantime, we wait and trust the Lord (though I am tempted to be anxious) and it is a good reminder that Noah is ultimately His child that He has entrusted to us. We will have a follow-up appointment with him in 2 months.

The pediatric GI, pediatrician, and neurologist all recommended that I contact the regional center on Noah's behalf. I don't know a whole lot about it, but it is a county-run program that provides early intervention with physical and occupational therapists. Hopefully they can set Noah on a program that will point him in the right direction for using those legs. It will most likely be about 45 days before he can actually be seen. Until then, we are continuing his exercises at home and just enjoying him for who he is.

It really does seem like Noah has taken leaps and bounds in the last couple of weeks. In the last couple of days, he learned how to click his tongue, make a 'kissing' noise with his mouth, and clap his hands with some amount of coordination. Last night he demonstrated his first recognizable 'sign'--he signed he wanted 'more' food by scratching his leg. I did it for him a couple of times, and then he did it on his own every time I asked him if he wanted more (probably 20 times in a row). He clapped his hands every time I said, "Good boy!" and smiled soooo big. He was quite proud of himself. While we continue to pray for his development and well-being, we are so encouraged to see little steps of progress along the way and we praise the Lord that our little Noah is fearfully and wonderfully made--whatever that may entail.

Saturday, June 14, 2008


Wow, it has been a year. In some ways it seems like it has gone by so quickly...but in other ways--mainly because so much has happened--it feels like a very long time. But, either way, Noah turned 1 today! Praise the Lord!
Right now, some of his favorite things are:
--"chasing" his big brother Jonah (which consists of me chasing Jonah while holding Noah...but he laughs and laughs and the way he kicks his legs when I'm running, you'd think he was the one doing all the work!)
--scooting. Backwards. But hey, he'll take mobility in any form he can get it!
--spinning around in my arms
--being tickled
Happy Birthday, Kiddo!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

New Zealand Again

As many of you may know I, Scott took the 12 hour flight to New Zealand again. I arrived in NZ on Wens, 28th and mucked around Auckland for about 8 hours. I spent my first night in NZ with Peter Somerville and his family. They were warm and gracious hosts and their many kids made me miss my own mightily. Thursday I drove down from Howick (a suburb of Auckland) to Hastings (in the Hawkes Bay region of the North Island). During this 6 hour drive Peter and I spoke about a lot of ministry ideas. We arrived in Hastings in the evening and I met up with my conference hosts from last year, Denys and his wife.

The next 5 days were spend at the 'Impact Bible Conference'. Scott Ardivanis, the pastor of Placerita Baptist Church in Santa Clarita, and Dr. Michael Grisanti from TMS were the key note speakers. Their two respective series delivered powerful sermons on the grace of God and the Holiness of God.

The Wednesday following the conference I spent the day taking a tour of the cities of Hastings and Napier. This region of the North Island is well known for wine making and its Art Deco flair. This whole region was created in 1931 when a magnitude 7.9 earthquake tore the region. Uplift in the area reached as much as 9 feet creating 48 square miles of brand new land. If you have ever seen Agatha Christie's Poirot the Art Deco imagery of the movies can be experienced in real life in Napier.

I met that evening with a number a couple of ministry leaders to discuss possible future ministry opportunities. We had a warm and engaging conversation that resulted in the opening of a more serious dialogue about where I might fit in at the Shepherds' Bible College and the Riverbend Bible Church .

I left the Hawkes Bay region on Thursday afternoon by flying back to Auckland on a little Bombardier 400. The views from the air were spectacular, es specially when we punched through a layer of clouds at 10,000 feet. The only thing above the cloud layer besides us were a couple of volcanic peaks, the biggest being Mount Ruapehu. It was beautifully other-worldly to see.

Back in Auckland I spent two nights with Jonathan McFarland at his parents house. 'Jono' as he is known by will be attending the Masters' Seminary soon. I could do a whole blog post about this guy but let it be sufficient to say here that TMS has been well forewarned! He was a great host and guide, taking me around to many of Auckland's beautiful parks and vistas. He also took me a 'Primal' meeting which is a church movement in NZ geared toward the 16-28 year old crowd. Again another blog post for this topic alone might be worth it but lets just say mix seeker sensitive with Charismatic spirit anointing with a Saturday night DJ dance club and you might approximate what the experience was like. The 21 minute sermon delivered by a 21 year old girl exhorted us to 'leave room for God' when facing life. I was crying by the end, though I'm not sure if was because I was laughing so hard at the lunacy of it all or whether it was because what I saw made my heart break. (Enough on that for now :) )
I next participated in Friday night youth night at Howick Baptist Church were Jono leads the youth program. We played a rousing game of dodge ball where I nearly knocked a guy out but had the favor returned a few games later. After adjusting my smashed up glasses off of my bashed in face, we all moved into a class room for the evenings lesson. Isn't Christian fellowship just fun sometimes!

The following Sunday I worshiped at Howick and the 200 some odd saints who call that church home. It is an amazing story, what is unfolding there (again another blog post sometime). But the Lord is working and bringing life back into that church. I had lunch that afternoon with an associate pastor named Calvyn Jonker and his family. As we consumed the world renowned South African borovos (sp?) sausage and steak, we talked about ministry in NZ and life in the States. I left lunch to meet with Peter and we worked out some ministry options if I were to come to Howick. In 4 weeks I will have an offer from the Shepherds' Bible college as well. When I do I will post some of the details on the this here blog and ask for your comments and feedback.

Whew! Then after that I flew home to Los Angeles. And here I am now typing the regaling story of my latest NZ adventure. We'll I feel that that's a good start for now. I'll post some more stuff later such as my now infamous photos of me herding sheep and what the sheep thought of that.