A New Beginning

Hi friends.  Please follow me here at my new blog:

Nova Initia

Full Dark

Gone is my Facebook account.  Dang, I miss it!  Thought giving that up was enough.  Really did…


It was just the beginning – call it God’s economy.

When He wants it all, He really wants it ALL.

Challenged by my pastor, my friend Bobby who sticks closer than a brother, and an unrelenting pursuit by the Holy Spirit, I surrender.  I give up God…

Against my flesh, but in obedience to Him ,I’m going “full dark” – joining my deactivated Facebook will be Twitter and my blog.  Ouch, even hard to write.

But right now, in this season of my journey, He wants all of me.  He wants my focus, my attention, my love.  He wants that 2 hours a day that I have devoted to my blog for over 3 years now. He wants the Twitter Litter too (thanks Bobby).  I sense He has prepared for me a focused message, and it’s ready for delivery…a message that’s playing out in and thru my life right now, in real time.  I’m to capture this message in written form for some other purpose.  And to do so, I must remove the noise, even the good noise.

So call it a break from the online world.  I hope to be back…I want to be back….I dont want to leave!  But if I really mean “more of Him and less of me”……yea…it really is all about obedience – following the strange instructions of the Holy Spirit.

To those of you who were kind enough to stop by this little blog, thank you for your constant words of love and encouragement.  You blessed me.  For those interested, I hope to personally update you on my journey.

So, perhaps without this little almost daily diversion, a new season of sharing and receiving His love awaits…for you too.

The Pink Team Scouting Report

The looks are always the same – a slight tilt of the head, the mouth opens, eyes widen, and a quick burst of an exhale as the head shakes side to side….“You live with 5 women? And 4 of them are teenage GIRLS?!?!”

And I am blessed.

But any man that tells you that he understands women is a LIAR.  The best we can hope for are fairly accurate scouting reports.

My buddy told me a few days ago, that perhaps God placed me “behind enemy lines” to report back to the blue team what the pink team is really like.  The pink team has never and will never be fully scouted or figured out.  As soon as we think we’ve got ’em, they’ll just change the rules…

So blue team, here are a few insights that I have been able to recon…things I THINK I’ve figured out. These are Top Secret.  If you blow my cover we are all in trouble.

  • Women love to be taken out to eat.  It makes their day.
  • Shopping improves their mood – instantaneously.
  • Given the chance, women will smell and re-smell the scented candle display at the store.  They can do that for hours.
  • Their clothes are complicated, their shoes unforgiving, and a bathroom should always be close – always valet park.
  • Usually it’s best to just close their teenage (bedroom, bathroom, closet) door.
  • Every woman likes wedding stuff.
  • Women don’t like explosions (random, I know, but perhaps useful)
  • Always carry tissue in your Jeep console.
  • Listen – just be quiet.  Stare into their eyes and just be quiet.  Give advice only when asked.
  • She goes first – through the door you have already opened.
  • We go first – movie theater rows (to blaze the trail), revolving doors (to start the spin), cabs (so she doesn’t have to slide all the way over).
  • Fail – That’s a beautiful dress, you look great!
  • Pass – That’s a great dress, you look beautiful!
  • To Her Father – Never ever, ever, poke fun of his daughter.  EVER. It will not endear you to him. He may kill you.
  • Her Friends – We get only one friend that we can find intolerable….only one.

Easy Answers for Their Common Questions:

  • Do you like what I’m wearing? You look beautiful.
  • Do I look fat in this? Of course not.
  • Can you give me a hand? Of course.
  • Which do you like better? This one or that one? That one.
  • What is your PROBLEM?!?! I love you.

The Pink Team is mysterious.  The Pink Team is emotional.  The Pink Team is beautiful.  And if you have members of the Pink Team in your life, you too are a blessed man.

Just remember – wipe off the sink and toilet seat down….

Of Hockey Fights and Spiritual Warfare

I love a good hockey fight.  It’s the most testosterone packed 10 seconds around.

If you too are a fan of the fights, check out the website HockeyFights.  It’s an NHL player favorite, full of pre-fight info such as who is your opponent’s brawler, how much does he weigh, how many penalty minutes does he have, and most importantly – is he a righty or lefty…or BOTH!

As I read an article in Men’s Journal by Charles Coxe about fight strategies, I saw God, Satan, and our daily battles with our enemy.   Here it is from a hockey fight perspective.  Can you see any spiritual warfare parallels?

1. Study Hard – Scout your opponent

(Hockey players have hockeyfight.com.  We have the Word of God)

2. Don’t Back Down – The worst thing you can do is back down…chicken out.

(Hockey players fight for pride.  We fight to remain in the game so that we can advance the Kingdom)

3. Get a Handle – With about 10 seconds to throw punches before the ref steps in, many fighters launch haymakers off the opening bell.  But the winner is usually the one who shows restraint.  Get a good grip on your opponent’s jersey or arm. You then control his movement and power.

(Hockey players strategize, we are called to armor up every day)

4. Strike First – Once you have restrained him, hit first.  When you get stung, you think defense too much.

(Hockey players will get bloodied, so will us Christians.  Choose to go on the offensive instead of waiting)

5. Stay Balanced – If you have balance you control your enemy.

(Hockey players train their legs for max balance.  We must strike spiritual balances between spiritual disciplines to be effective)

6. Use Your Head – Sometimes you have to take a punch to give a punch.  The hardest part of your head is your forehead, so if you gotta take a hit, take it there.

(Sometimes the best strategy for both Hockey Players and us Christians is to DUCK!)

I Dare Ya~

Drop your pride – lose your agenda – and pray this:
My Lord God,
I have no idea where I am going.
I do not see the road ahead of me.
I cannot know for certain where it will end.
Nor do I really know myself,
and the fact that I think I am following
your will does not mean
that I am actually doing so.
But I believe that my desire to please you
does in fact please you.
And I hope that I have that desire
in all that I am doing.
I hope that I will never do anything
apart from that desire.
And I know that if I do this
you will lead me by the right road
though I may know nothing about it.
Therefore will I trust you always
though I may seem to be lost
and in the shadow of death.
I will not fear,
for you are ever with me,
and you will never leave me
to face my perils alone.
– Thomas Merton (1915-1968)
(Thanks Andy for sharing this from Los)

Confession – I Don’t Hunger for God…

I don’t.

How can I when I overstuff myself with the things of this world?  If I were brutally honest with myself, I would see that I overindulge in the temporal and nibble on the things of God.

Is it any wonder I’m never satisfied?

If you dont feel strong desires for the manifeistation of the glory of God, it’s because you have nibbled for so long at the table of the world, your soul is stuffed with small things and there is no room for the great. God did not create you for this. There is an appetite for God and it can be awakened. I invite you to turn from the dulling effects of food and the dangers of idolatry and to say with some simple fast, THIS much oh God  I want you. – John Piper

Take a trip with me – no, its not the beach.  Well, its kinda like the beach, but no water.  We’re going to the  Mojave Desert.  Don’t pack a thing.  Just us.  For two full days we’re sitting in the dead center of the desert.  No shade, not even a blanket to sit on – go ahead, just flop down on the sand.  Lean back on your hands.  Get comfy – we’re going to be here a while.  Feel the heat?  Wow, bright.  No, I didn’t bring any water either.  Remember, just us, nothing else….nothing else but us and God.  Talk to Him, not me.  You’re mad at me anyway for getting you into this oven of a nightmare.  24 hours later, nothing has changed,  well, other than our cracking chapped lips, incredibly parched mouths, and an overwhelming hunger.  Sun’s at high noon.  Not a cloud in the sky.  Still just us… and God, and a paralyzing thirst.

Would you trade this God time for a gallon of water right now?  Ice cold water?  I’m afraid I would…I would trade God for my need.  Ouch.  God forgive me.

I don’t have a longing for God because I have filled up on so many other things.  My soul craves something – there is an emptiness.  But this emptiness can be filled with other stuff. If I would just deny my worldly nibbles, I would find that there is this hunger for God than can be awakened. My appetite for God could actually grow.

It’s time for a major shift.  When I read the following chapter, something within my soul awakened.  Thats it!  Thats whats missing from my faith journey.

Psalm 63

1 – God—you’re my God! I can’t get enough of you!
I’ve worked up such hunger and thirst for God,
traveling across dry and weary deserts.
2-4 So here I am in the place of worship, eyes open,
drinking in your strength and glory.
In your generous love I am really living at last!
My lips brim praises like fountains.
I bless you every time I take a breath;
My arms wave like banners of praise to you.

Somehow I must get to the point in my life were I’d rather have God in the desert than a gallon of cool water. How can I be in the dessert for 2 days and long for God more than water?

For me, it’s a 2 step process:

1 – Eliminate the things of this world that I am feasting on, things that feed my selfish desires, things that I have made an idol.  I just asked the Holy Spirit and He was faithful to show me 5 immediate things.  Ask Him yourself.

The removal of these idols will create a new hunger.

2- Satisfy this new hunger with the things of God – His word, prayer, fasting, ministering His love, being obedient to His calling in our lives.

More of Him….less of me….equals an eternal satisfaction.


One of My Mentors Just Died…

This one hit real close to home.

Marv Hubbard passed away early this morning, and I am grieving.

Marv, you taught me how to love.  You taught me about truth.  You taught me how to not only speak into another’s darkness, but to pull up a chair and live with them there.

When I was most unlovely Marv, you loved me.  You loved me enough to speak truth and life into my hurting soul.

You were an artist my friend,  not only with a brush and paint, but with your carefully crafted words on the canvas of many hearts.

I’ve spent the past 2 days going back through your Blogs and Tweets.  Your wisdom…..wow.  I’m missing you so much…..

Here are a few of my favorite quotes of yours:

  • The secret to this happiness thing is to give one’s life away, plowing it into the lives of others.
  • The agape love described in scripture means that you love, expecting nothing in return.
  • A line out Switchfoot’s new CD says “every breath is a second chance.” Fortunately I have had many breaths of atonement.
  • When we clear our pipelines to God and others of the junk in our lives, we are able to sense the leading of God and the needs of others.
  • I am beginning to realize that the worst place that I can be as a Christian is thinking that I have arrived.
  • Unless we come to grips with the mortality of life, we never see the importance of a daily decision for Christ to truly live.
  • True life is in fully accepting your mortality; realizing the joy of this day by recognizing that it could be your last.
  • The secret of contentment is learning to embrace the rain that falls in all of our lives. I rejoice in the people who embrace the rain.
  • The time has come where we need to do more than speak into people’s darkness. We need to live with them in their darkness to show the light.

I miss you Marv.  Thank you for your legacy.  Thank you for your love.  Thank you for showing me what true love looks like.

Even in your death Marv Hubbard, your legacy lives on…