Tuesday, January 23, 2007

What's New in the Life of the Rusted One?

What’s new in the life of the Rusted One? Here’s the summarized version: school started back up, I got a promotion at Starbucks, I will probably start new training at AmFam, still workin for AOMin, teaching the junior high class at church, and I decided to start swing dancing again! I’m still looking for a wife, getting ready for the OOTP and Relient K’s new album.

Yes, it is true, I am now a Shift Supervisor for the Starbucks Coffee Corporation. I’m finished with training and have run one successful shift. I’m surprised by how much responsibility they’ve given me. I run the store when I’m a Shift which is way exciting. My store has great Baristas, so it is super easy to do my job.

I had a rough rough practice shift: computers were down for two hours straight, someone called in sick, one person was late during which time we got crazy busy, I had to go to another Store to pick up product, and I stayed an hour late. Noooot the best first experience =). But that is not a normal shift, so yay for that.

While I’m in school I want to continue progressing, and make a possible career move by continuing training at American Family Insurance. Stay tuned for updates.

My junior high class at church is now in chapter 2 of Romans, and we are movin right along. They are comprehending the material which is rewarding for me to see. I love those kids so much.

Swing dancing. I haven’t gone yet, but I am planning on it. I love it. But I do need some major practice before I step one foot on that dance floor. I’m hoping Heather might be willing to spend some time with me =)

Yes, still looking for a wife. If I know you well, feel free to keep an eye open for me.

OOTP comes on July 13th. Uber excited about that one. I’m gonna reread the series before it comes out.

Finally, Relient K’s new album comes out in March, which I’m sure will r0x0rz. Relient K is officially my favorite band of all time.

That’s it for now.

Casey of Basey

The Mercy of God

Deuteronomy 4:31, “For the LORD your God is a merciful God; he will not abandon or destroy you or forget the covenant with your forefathers, which he confirmed to them by oath.” (NASB).

God has been merciful, He is merciful, and He will continue to be merciful. The mercy of God has been a theme in my life in recent weeks. On more than one occasion, this has been the topic of conversation amongst friends.

Just last night I was talking on the phone with a dear brother, Eli. We were reminiscing over the years that we’ve known each other when he paused and said, “You know, God sure has been good to us, Case. Think of what He has brought us through. He has spared us from so many things. He has protected us and kept us firm in the faith.”

This is so true for me especially over the past 4-5 years. But through it all, through all the changes in life, God has remained faithful. The Potter has molded me as He saw fit, and I am able to marvel at his perfect plan.


Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Thanks to this Bill I Deserve a Raise =)

“Tackling a top priority, House Democrats pushed a $2.10 an hour increase in the federal minimum wage toward passage Wednesday, calling it only a partial restoration of purchasing power for America's lowest-paid workers.

As their second bill since taking control of Congress, the Democratic-written legislation would raise the federal wage floor from $5.15 to $7.25 an hour in three steps over 26 months. The federal wage hasn't budged for 10 years.” (http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,242742,00.html)

Democrats took control of Congress and said they would raise the national Minimum Wage. Welp, they are doing just that! I guess they can be said to keep their word … at least in this case? (Hey, I’ve got to say SOMETHING nice about the Dems. Right?) It boggles my mind why people continue to live in this fantasy world that by raising the minimum wage, America’s economy will suddenly come to life? Let’s think this through: the minimum wage is raised $2.10/hr. While this may help the nation’s 16-year-olds, how does this help the economy? This sudden boost in the minimum wage means that everyone earning more than minimum wage is now earning a lesser value.

What is the motivation in upping the minimum wage in the first place? Liberals argue that they want to “help the working class of America!” Well la-dee-freakin-da! Sure sounds nice doesn’t it? And it would be nice if they were actually helping the working class of America. But are teenagers really America’s working class? And another thing: aren’t minimum wage jobs supposed to be jobs when one first starts out. Minimum wage jobs (bagging groceries, etc) are meant to be a transition job, aren’t they?

Democrats act like they are saving America when in reality they are hurting our economy. Once this bill goes into effect, I would actually expect a raise at both of my jobs. Why? Because I don’t work at minimum wage jobs, and therefore my wage needs to increase to counterbalance the increase in minimum wage work. Inflation inflation inflation!

I’ve got a question for anyone more familiar with economics: how long will it take for our economy to properly adjust to this drastic raise in minimum wage?

The conservative in me wants to smack the Democrats upside the head for this bad idea. Why not let businesses determine their employees’ pay? Demand and competition do work, ya know?
Anywho, let’s pray our economy doesn’t get too messed up.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Some sad news to report

EmergentNo informed me of some very sad news today: a few ECM leaders are having a conference with TD Jakes. Among the ECers is Mark Driscoll. I pray that our God grants repentance unto Pastor Driscoll to turn away from the ECM and from cooperating with anti-Trinitarians.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Happy Freakin New Year!

*innocent grin*

On New Year’s Eve, my church replaced our evening worship service with our New Year’s Eve celebration. As always, it was an amazing time of fellowship, food, singing, prayer and a brief message. Pastor Fry’s sermon was refreshing. He taught from one of my favorite passages of Scripture: Romans 8:28-39,

“28And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. 29For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; 30and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified. 31What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us? 32He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things? 33Who will bring a charge against God's elect? God is the one who justifies; 34who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is He who died, yes, rather who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes for us. 35Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36Just as it is written,"FOR YOUR SAKE WE ARE BEING PUT TO DEATH ALL DAY LONG; WE WERE CONSIDERED AS SHEEP TO BE SLAUGHTERED." 37But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. 38For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (NASB).

This passage has been a favorite for the Saints of God down through the history of the church, and for good reason! O how marvelous are these words! O what comfort they bring! I cannot recall how many times the Holy Spirit has used these words to assist me in my time of difficulty. I was so very pleased when my pastor began preaching from this section in Romans.

Beginning with verse 28, Pastor Fry reminded me that everything that happens in life happens at the predestinated purpose of the almighty Lord of heaven and earth. Then there’s the Golden Chain of Redemption, found in verses 29-30 – those choice words that cause every believer to rejoice. But what really struck me were Paul’s words in verse 31: “What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us?” Pastor Fry brought out that we have many enemies in this world: the Devil, and an unending number of unregenerate men. But you know what, none of that matters because the all-powerful God of the universe is for us. He is more powerful than our adversaries.

Whenever the Lord brings trials into your life, whether in the form of difficulty, or opposition to the gospel of Christ, be comforted because God is bigger and stronger than all things. More than that, He has good intentions for His children.

Paul was convinced that nothing can separate us from God’s love. And that matters above all else. I praise God for this! He is merciful upon those who deserve to face His wrath. As my dear friend, Simon Escobedo, so often prays, “Thank thee, Lord, for making us trophies of your grace.” Amen. Thank you, Lord.

After Pastor Fry’s sermonette (shorter sermon), we spent some time in prayer, singing and sharing words of testimony. As I looked around the room, I realized that I knew every person by name. Many of those I knew very well, and have had many laughs with. I was surrounded by people who have had a great impact on my walk with God. Two men who shared brought me to tears. The first was Rich Pierce, President of Alpha and Omega Ministries. He expressed his thanksgiving to God for providing new facilities for AOMin. Even though the facilities have a long way to go before they are fully refurbished, he is thankful nonetheless. The second was by our Deacon, Jim Broyles. He expressed God’s faithfulness to him and his wife as they had a full-term still-born child this past year. I cannot tell you how I encouraged I have been to see a man who lost a son stand before the people of God and thank God for His faithfulness through it all!

I left with a renewed wonder towards the grace of Christ, and with the resolve to increase in my sanctification in 2007.