Leaving the Post Modern Era?

I'm not up on all things post-modern, but I do tend to believe that there is a drastic cultural shift taking place. I came across a quote from Time magazine from Alexandra Jacobs, who was one of the passengers of the Jet Blue flight that safely landed after their amazing 3 hour circling of Los Angeles. She said:

We couldn't believe the irony that we might be watching our own demise on television. That seemed a little bit post-post-modern.

I didn't know that we were progressing that quickly! ;)


My house is my house darn it!

While in Mexico, we spent a day at La Bufadora, a tourist area South of Ensenada, where you can see this giant blow hole, and do some shopping.

We decided to purchase a nice little sign for our front door that said My house is your house in Spanish.

About a week after we put it up, I came home from shopping and read the sign hanging by our front door, greeting everybody with...

Mi casa es mi casa...My house is my house? Oops.

Oh well, it makes a great conversation starter, as I've already found out with our UPS guy! :)

Yard work

Today was wonderful. Alison, my brother AJ, and two students from the youth group teamed up with Project Linkage and did some yard work.

We traveled from South Tigard to North Portland - about 20 min. - and mowed, chopped down trees, cut back hydrangea, roses and ivy, demolished blackberry bushes, and trimmed hedges. It was a great day for it. About 70 degrees.

The gentleman that we helped was a man that had a brain tumor back in the 70's. He's been fine until recently when fluid has increased in his brain, causing swelling, and pain. If fact, he was in the hospital on Friday but told them that he wanted to go home so he could make sure that we took care of the yard. Tough times for the gentlemen and his wife.

I highly recommend doing this yourself, even linking up with Project Linkage. They provide all the tools and equipment that you'll need. It only takes about 6 people and 3 hours on a Saturday.

Thanks for reading.

Hoping that we can grow in love for our neighbors.


New Cat, New counter

It's been a while since I've blogged. I see that my friends Jon, Brian, and even Chris have all out blogged me. I don't mind, but apparently Jon and Brian think it's some sort of a competition...but it doesn't matter, their blogs have all been great recently.

I thought I'd try to be cool like my friends and add a counter to my blog. So I can see how many people don't read it.

Alison and I finally moved her cat to our apartment. She is a great cat. Soft, fairly cuddly, and most of the time doesn't scratch. Her name is Misty, but Ali likes to just call her 'kitty'.


Also Tragic

How do we respond to Katrina? Of course we're going to try to find someone or something to blame...the President, the governor, the Mayor, global warming, humans developing the wetlands, and God.

But what should our response be? I tend to think that we are supposed to respond in love. Especially for those who claim to be followers of Jesus. Should we stand, mock, and condemn those who have been through the most tragic situation of their lives? Or should we respond in love by supplying for their needs? It seems obvious to me.

My friend Brian wrote a short blog about 2 churches that had very different reactions. I hope that you'll read it and that it will help your heart grasp how we should love.

You can read it at


Full update on the engagement

Okay, so I've taken the liberty, with permission, to share my moms version of the story of the engagement. Pictures are at the bottom. Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 31st, our Annie got engaged to her friend of six years...boyfriend for two... Matt Beghtel (pronounced bek'-tl) -- a wonderful Christian man.

Matt came and requested permission to ask her about two weeks ago, then on Tuesday of this week brought over a bag of props to set the scene which he visualized in our backyard.

Wednesday he took her out to dessert (both casually dressed) and he called us from there when he knew they were heading back here. Annie came in to say hi to us, and then she heard Matt calmly call her to come look out in the backyard.

She was befuddled when she saw the flickering votive candles ringing the patio, the petal strewn pathway, and the single red rose next to the bowl of candles on the tablecloth covered table. Her first thought was that we had had some romantic dinner out there! "Go on out," Matt said, pulling out a Puma shoe box. (Matt had worked in the shoe department of Nordstrom this summer and had talked about getting her some great running shoes, so when he asked her to sit down so he could try something on, she willingly complied.) "I know this looks like a lot of fuss just for shoes."

He got down on one knee and opened up the box. She was further confused when he reached into the packing-peanut-filled box and pulled out a huge ring...a paperweight "solitaire diamond ring" that they had seen while shopping last spring. Then he spoke his love for her and told how he wanted to spend the rest of his life with her, and asked if she would she marry him. Huh? He asked her again. Are you kidding? Will you marry me? he repeated. But where's my shoes? she wanted to know. The fourth time he asked it fully made sense and we heard her squeal, "YES!" He explained how he wanted her to pick out her own ring and all the pieces finally fell into place. Matt reached down and flicked on the CD player playing, "Just the Way You Look Tonight". They danced and talked in hushed whispers and finally came in to tell us about a half hour later. We had sparkling apple cider and hugs waiting.

They plan a "next summer" wedding after she graduates from the University of Oregon. Matt graduated from there and this past week started work as a Credit Analyst for Umpqua Bank in downtown Portland.

Here are some photos for your entertainment. The proposal scene is re-created 30 minutes after the real deal.

Happily and lovingly, Jan and Dan


Matt 14...uh...I mean Matt Beghtel

So I have the second best news ever (to my own engagement). My wonderful sister is engaged! Woohoo! She is engaged to Matt Beghtel. Darn cool guy. I am so happy for them. Congratulations!

Matt 13

So I'm reading through Matthew 13 now, which is all about the kingdom of Heaven, and this seems to be a big subject for Jesus. He talks about it a lot and says that those who have been taught about the kingdom are like those who bring out new treasures along with the old.

I've read the parable of the scattered seed before (Matthew 13:1-23), but maybe it is my recent brush with poverty, or my growing desire to see those in need be helped by others. But I noticed how Jesus describes the thorny soil.

He says that The one who received the seed that fell among the thorns is the man who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke it, making it unfruitful.

And I wonder how many times my "soil" has seemed real thorny, thinking only of my needs and how I can meet them. How many times have I traded my desire for things, and money, for giving to those who really need it? Am I really living out the Kingdom life that God desires? Is the vast majority of our country?

9.02.2005 thoughts...old thoughts

Well, I'm back in school. Started yesterday. I hope that it is going to be a great term. I'm taking four classes, of which the titles aren't interesting at all. One is on Monday nights from 6-10pm! Ughh... But I guess it's better than 8 am, four days a week.

I spent the last few weeks finally getting our apartment cleaned and organized. The office...formerly a gigantic junk now usable and I feel like I can function at home. So, I'm back to writing.

Down in Mexico, a great singer and missionary, Frank Grubbs, spoke to us about the 30,000 children that were dying each day from malnutrition, lack of clean water, and preventable diseases. He said that if an American plane carrying a few hundred passengers crashed, it would be a huge news story, and the people would demand an answer for why this happened, and how we could stop it from happening again.

So why don't we hear about the 30,000 children dying each day? Is that not a bigger news story? Doesn't someone need to speak out for them? What am I doing to help? That might be a better question, and a better place to start.

Hurricane Katrina caused massive devastation and over one thousand lives were lost. But a disaster 30 times stronger happens each day...and we don't hear about it. I still enjoy my clean water, need some more coffee. I must seem like a big baby.