December
17
Filed Under (church, Life) by Justin on 2007-12-17

It’s quite timely for me to see Dean’s post about being debt-free this morning, as we just made our final payment on our credit card debt last Monday.
BoA Paid off
We still have a little ways to go, but we are highly motivated right now. I’ve been just devouring as much information as I can get my hands on. I’ve been reading Free and Clear by Howard Deyton of Crown Financial Ministries, listening to Crown’s 30-minute daily show, and most recently, getting on the Dave Ramsey bandwagon. I’ve even decided to teach Dave’s Financial Peace University at Crestview starting in January and I am pumped up about it. I can’t wait to get started helping other folks catch the fever to “Live like no one else so that later, they can live like no one else!”

I think listening to the radio programs everyday has been more helpful than anything else. It’s not just hearing the success stories that motivate me though – it’s the utterly depressing stories of people that are so much worse off than we’ve ever thought about being. Bonnie and I are truly blessed. I have a wonderful job that I absolutely love and the fact that I can get paid at all for doing it is still amazing to me, let alone the fact that I can get paid well for it.

If we can stay on track through the Christmas season, we’ll be paying off our cars within the next three or four months and then we’re attacking my student loans. About the time we pay that off, Bonnie’s will come out of deferment and we’ll start cranking on that. On paper, it looks like two years from now – Christmas 2009 – will be a VERY Merry Christmas for us.

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December
14
Filed Under (Geekspeak, Missions) by Justin on 2007-12-14

I thought I’d take a few minutes and update everyone on my mission team’s plans for March of next year.

As I’ve mentioned before, we’ll be visiting Moscow the last week of March and we’ve been working hard making sure that we’ll have the funds needed. We got some coverage in the local newspaper and have been pursuing additional local fund raising opportunities. In just the past eight weeks or so, we’ve raised over $17,500 of the estimated $28,000 that we will need to go. We are well past our end-of-year goal and we’re now hoping to reach the $20,000 mark before December 31.

I really appreciate the support from everyone who has sent in a contribution, but more importantly, we appreciate the prayers. The fact that we’ve raised this much in such a short period of time is truly a God-thing and we give Him all the glory for it.

P.S. – Check out the new Yahoo! Shortcuts plugin if you’re a WordPress user… It rocks. If you’re not using WordPress already, this would be a good time to REALLY think about switching… You know who you are…

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December
13
Filed Under (Geekspeak) by Justin on 2007-12-13

If you’re an OpenOffice.org user, you might have some interest in the launch of Ulteo’ss new online version.

However, I do find it to be more than just ironic that the filters in Gmail tagged my sign-up confirmation email from Ulteo as spam. Anyone else think that’s a little strange? I do use a lot, and I mean a lot of Google in the course of my day, but some days I think they really are starting to act a little more like some other big, large, filthy rich tech company we all love to hate.

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December
13
Filed Under (Geekspeak) by Justin on 2007-12-13
img_1884

img_1884,
originally uploaded by wantmoore.

Ian posted a link to this lolcats post a few minutes ago in IRC, and I just want to say, BOO! That last cat is so not #000000. Apache, on the right, is #000000. Pixel is somewhere near #555555 I think.

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December
12
Filed Under (church, CITRT, Geekspeak) by Justin on 2007-12-12

Dave Ramsey’s Quote of the Day from yesterday: Your talent is God’s gift to you. What you do with it is your gift back to God. – Leo Buscaglia

I couldn’t help but reflect on how true that is, especially in the Church IT circle. To all my peers – thanks for the gifts you’re giving back!

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December
10
Filed Under (News, Politics) by Justin on 2007-12-10

The video comes from Focus on the Family Action’s CitizenLink, and it’s right on target.

Go out of your way this week to say MERRY CHRISTMAS to someone.

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December
06
Filed Under (church, Politics) by Justin on 2007-12-06

The following started out as a reply to Roger’s comment on my post The Truth Hurts, but it got a little lengthy, so I thought I would post it here for everyone to see and comment on. If the subject matters of religion, politics, and war interest you, I’d urge you to go back an read that previous post and all associated comments, then come back here to continue the discussion.

Roger, first of all – thanks for stopping by.

Telling people to leave if they don’t like it was really more tongue-in-cheek than anything else.

You don’t have to like what Bush is doing, and you’re certainly allowed to believe whatever you want about the legality or ethics of it, but even Jesus Christ himself said that such wars are inevitable. I really don’t want to turn this into a debate about religion, but I do want to take the opportunity to spell out what I believe and back it up with some scripture. Have a look at Matthew 24:

You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places.

Now I admit, you’ve got my brain working hard this morning with the statement “I think of Christ as a man of peace.” While I almost agree with it on the surface, after thinking for a few minutes, I can’t. I may be wrong, and I’m definitely going to be thinking about this some more, but while our Lord and Savior is the Prince of Peace, I think there are just too many instances in the Bible where God did send Christians out to be offensive and to right something wrong in the world. He even stated in Matthew 10:34 that He didn’t come to bring peace, but a sword.

So what would Christ have done? I don’t know, but I like Mike Huckabee’s answer from the CNN/YouTube debate.

In closing, and with all the Christianity-related stuff above aside, I’ll argue to my grave with anyone who disagrees with the fact that Iraq, Afghanistan, the United States, and the rest of the world is a safer place today than it was six years ago. Much safer.

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December
03
Filed Under (News, Politics) by Justin on 2007-12-03

I’ve posted a lot about Mike Huckabee in recent months, and I’m more excited everyday to see the progress his campaign is making. This is hot off the wire from Rasmussen:

Today, in the first full round of national polling completed since last week’s “debate” among Republican Presidential hopefuls, Huckabee has pulled to within three points of the frontrunning Rudy Giuliani. Heading into the debate, Giuliani led Huckabee by twelve.
[snip]
Not only that, new polling data released today shows that Huckabee has pulled to within a single percentage point of Hillary Clinton in a general election match-up.

If you haven’t paid much attention to the election coverage so far, it’s about time to start, and I urge you all to take a hard look at where Huckabee stands on the important issues. If you have been following, I hope you’re becoming increasingly frustrated like I am with the schoolyard arguing and bullying tactics among some of the other frontrunners and will also give Mike a look.

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